Baiona Town, Galicia

The Tourist Office is very helpful and provided the map below. The town was interesting but did not seem particularly concerned about its past, although several buildings were being renovated. People were friendly and I found a jeweller who replaced my watch battery (it stopped the moment I landed in Porto!) for a tiny fraction of what it would have cost in London.

Map of Baiona (Tourist Office)

There were many religious buildings in the town: a Dominican Convent (an order founded to preach the Gospel and also referred to as Black Friars), a Collegiate Church, i.e. non-monastic, with priests who lived a communal life, a sanctuary (was this a particularly Holy place?), a Brotherhood devoted to community care, and a religious hospital. Why so many, I wonder.

The Dominican Convent of 1547 (no.2) was firmly closed and it was difficult to get a sense of a religious building. The Convent had a Chapel, farm and orchard, and an aerial view on Google shows a large open space behind the walls.

The Mercy Chapel (no.4) was originally inside the fortress but moved into the town in 1656, and on our visit was firmly ‘under renovation’. The Chapel was the headquarters of the Brotherhood of the House of Peace and Mercy founded in 1574.

The Mercy Chapel

The Mercy Chapel

Lorenzo Correa was the Mayor of Cuernavaca, Mexico, and he built his house (no.5) in Baiona in 1757 (why?) The coats of arms represent the Correa, Sotomayor (The 1st Count of Gondomar‘s father was a Sotomayor), and Troncoso de Lira families. It is now the City Hall.

The Sancti Spiritus Hospital (no.7) dates from the 16C. (Was this meant for Pilgrims?)

St Liberata’s Sanctuary (1695) (no.9) is situated at one of the three gates into the town, and has some interesting shields on the front of the building. (Stories about St Liberata are not consistent, except that she was the first Christian woman to be martyred through crucifixion.)

St Liberata's Sanctuary

St Liberata’s Sanctuary

TheSantuary of St Liberata

The Sanctuary of St Liberata

Opposite the Sanctuary is the Collegiate Church of St Mary (no.10) which dates from 12C-14C. The church was built with assistance from the Cistercian Monks from Oia and must have been one of the earliest buildings in the town, together with the fortress.

The Collegiate Church of St Mary

The Collegiate Church of St Mary

The Collegiate Church of St Mary

The Collegiate Church of St Mary

Down the hill the 17C Chapel of St John (no.8) is closed all year apart from Easter and St John’s Feast Day.

The Chapel of St John

The Chapel of St John

The Holy Trinity Stone Cross, (no.11) on the opposite side of the town, stands at another gate, and on a Roman Road. However, it was firmly under wraps. (Photograph from here.)

 Dean Mendoza’s House (no.12) was built in 1768 and is now a hotel.

Dean Mendoza's House

Dean Mendoza’s House

And a last book at the town across the marina.

Baiona

Baiona

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