Gijón (khi-hon), Spain is a working city right on the Atlantic coast in the northern Spanish region of Asturias. Separated from the rest of Spain by high mountains, this part of the country has a flavor and climate very different to what you’ll find in Mediterranean areas. Gijón,Spain is a coastral city on the Bay of Biscay and is Asturias’ largest city.
On Saturday (Nov. 1), we headed for Gijón, Spain, by bus. The bus ride was uneventful with a few too many stops and a bit cramped, but the incredible scenery made up for any discomfort.
Gijón seemed like a great place to stop on our way to San Sabastian. We both wanted to see more of the north coast and we were getting out of more predicted rain in Santiago. Although we only spent one full day in Gijón, we made the best of it and played tourist for the day by visiting the widely acclaimed Gijón Aquarium and the botanical gardens. At the end of the day, we felt we made great choices. We also enjoyed lunch at an outdoor cafe near the water and seeing so many families out on a Saturday, enjoying the sunshine and sea air. John topped off the day with the ’hard cider experience’ that everyone who visits Gijón should have.
I have been loving the city scapes (with and without people). So much character in Gijón’s Old Town.
Jardín Botánico Atlántico is the only botanical garden in Asturias, opening in 2003. The park is in four different zones, each with a very different environment.
I have many great photos of the Botanical Gardens where we spent over two hours. I will save the best photos of the gardens and the aquarium for a separate post.
John’s run in with Asturias Cider (and Jack Daniels)
The information below is from: https://www.shermanstravel.com/advice/11/18/how-to-experience-the-asturias-cider-trail-in-spain/.
Sherman tells the story much better than I could.
“There is great pomp and circumstance in consuming Asturias cider -- an alcoholic drink that officially can be made from only 22 apple varieties as designated by the European Union. First, you must order a whole bottle, so it's a great time to bring along some friends (or make new ones). Second, you'll have to let an Asturian bartender open and correctly pour for you. Sidra must be poured a great height so that bubbles are naturally added, through aeration, and bartenders hold the bottle above their head and aim into a glass below their waist. The glass is tipped at an angle for proper bubble-making. And, yes, it's as difficult as it sounds; don't try this at home.
Once you have your glass in your hands, Asturias cider is meant to be consumed quickly, because the taste will change when the bubbles escape. This, after all, isn't a sipping drink. It's more for gulping. Finally, watch where you step when you're all done and on your way out. Unfortunately, in the midst of this journey, a heart-breaking amount of cider inevitably escapes the glass, ending up on the floor and likely the bartender too.”