Distance to the camping: 5 Km.
Set in a privileged location on this abrupt coastline, and declared Historic-Artistic Monument in 1931, Santa María de Oia Monastery is a clear example of the Cistercian austere architecture and it is the only one of the sort in this area. Built in 1132 under King Alfonso VII, it was an important defensive fortress against constant maritime invasions, such as the invasion of the Turks in 1624, repelled by the monks, a fact that resulted in King Felipe IV awarding them more privileges.
In 1835, after the Mendizábal’s laws of Ecclesiastical confiscations it became private property. During the Spanish Civil War, it was used as a prison. Nowadays visitors can only enter the temple area.
With the appearance of a fortress, it has a Latin cross plan, with three naves separated by large pillars and covered with pointed barrel vaults. An impressive star vault supports the 16th century choir. In the inside, the five rectangular chapels on the front are presented in an escalated manner, a rare example that invokes the French style of the religious order. Visitors can also enjoy the frescos representing King Alfonso VII and his son Sancho IV. The door through which monks used to enter the Church is located on the wall of the North wing but it is currently blocked off.
Outside the monastery keeps the Romanesque style of the time it was built. In the Baroque façade from the 18th c., visitors can spot the figure of the Virgen del Mar (Our Lady of the Sea).
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