Did you also enjoy the Netflix hit-series “Stranger Things”? Well, Hawkins, Indiana, is not the only place in the world where the “upside-down” presents itself. This is my third blog based on Netflix-titles under the Covid-19 lock-down. Today, I reveal my own top-5 of “Stranger Things” in Asturias…
1. Bufones de Pria
A place where the upside down literally seems to burst out of the ground! The Bufones de Pria look a bit like geysers. However, they are cracks and chimneys formed through erosion of limestone by sea- and rainwater. Especially at storm surges, water escapes with high pressure into the air. This results in meters-high water jets.
Thus, be as brave as Eleven and Mike and visit the Bufones during a stormy day!
2. Gigantic Dinosaur Footprints
Admittingly, few people would like to meet a “Demorgorgon”, the monster from Stranger Things. But a 12 m tall Tyrannosaur Rex is scary enough, right? And what to think about Sauropods with a footprint diameter of 1.25 m? You can find these footprints and other Jurassic fossils at nine different places along Asturias’ coast, between Gijon and Ribadesella.
3. La Cuevona
Do you remember the scene where Chief Jim Hopper enters the Hawkins Tunnel System and has no idea what to expect? I had a similar feeling when driving to the village “Cuevas” with my family. We were planning to hike the “Mill Route”. However, before entering the village, we suddenly found ourselves driving through a long tunnel. And not a “normal” tunnel with nice, smooth walls. On the contrary, “La Cuevona” is a 300 m long natural tunnel, shaped by continuous erosion.
Eager to meet stalactites, stalagmites and columns named “the Devil’s tongue” or “Santiago’s beard”? You can drive through the tunnel, but it’s more fun to park your car in the small parking before entering and explore the Cuevas Tunnel System on foot.
4. Gulpiyuri and Las Acacias beach
How would Dustin scientifically describe a beach? Something like: A sandy land alongside the sea, right? Well, you can find over 200 beaches like this in Asturias. However, there are two Very Special beaches with even more interesting names: Gulpiyuri and Las Acacias. They are both inland beaches and declared Natural Monuments.
Las Acacias beach lies 100 meter inland from the Cantabrian sea. It is connected to the sea by two underground channels. Its water is only 1 meter deep, so perfect to visit with kids. However, some exercise is required beforehand, since Las Acacias can only be reached on foot.
Gulpiyuri is a 40-meter long inland beach along a sinkhole. Its water levels are entirely dependent on the tide. High tide? Then it is flooded by seawater that enters from the underground caves and rocks. Low tide? It disappears!
5. Arnao Submarine Mine
What do you get when you combine a wild seacoast with an abundance of carbon waiting to be mined? A submarine coal mine, of course! Actually, this is not that obvious. The submarine mine of Arnao is the first, and only one of the few, European mines built below the seafloor.
When visiting the museum, the local guide takes you 20 meters underground to the mines’ original galleries. Here, you’ll hear stories about blind mules, jumping miners over 80 meters deep mine shafts, galleries that were excavated 1 km under the seafloor and Asturian goblins that robbed the poor miners…
Too scared to visit Arnao submarine mine on your own? We organize guided tours to the mine, including a visit to the nearby “workers village” Arnao and a fresh seafood lunch in a local restaurant!
Discover more “Stranger Things” in Asturias
The above mentioned places are only some of the “Stranger Things” I found in Asturias. I am sure there are much more to discover! For example, I did not even talk about the Trasgus and Xanas. These are figures from the Asturian mythology who sneak into your house (or hotel room!) at night or sing seductive songs along brooks in dark woods…
If you visited Asturias before, you might have encountered some “Stranger Things” yourself! I am curious to hear about them! And if you are planning on visiting Asturias and want to discover some of these “Stranger Things” with us, we are happy to take you on one of of our Guided Tours!