Fervenza do Ezaro

Santiago de Compostela / Galicia Region, A Coruna, Spain

About Fervenza do Ezaro


Hiking Distance: < 1km round trip
Suggested Time: 30-45 minutes

Date first visited: 2015-06-09
Date last visited: 2015-06-09

Waterfall Latitude: 42.91264
Waterfall Longitude: -9.1163

The Fervenza do Ezaro (or Fervenza do Ézaro with the accent) was a pleasant waterfalling surprise for us as it was a high-volume waterfall set amidst a windswept rocky landscape all within close proximity to the Atlantic Ocean.

The contrasting rocky backdrop even allowed us to spot a seal on the other side of the river, which further added to the naturesque atmosphere that still remained here.

Ezaro_096_06092015 - Fervenza do Ezaro
Fervenza do Ezaro

As you can see from the photo above, this 40m falls performed quite well even as our visit occurred in early- to mid-June 2015.

Indeed, it was hard to believe that as recently as 2010 and before, this waterfall was not allowed to flow unless there was an excess of waterflow on the Río Xallas.

This was because a hydroelectric plant that was built in the middle of the 20th century pretty much cut off the flow of the falls except for specific times or special occasions.

It wouldn’t be until 2011 after pressure from environmental groups (like Rivers with Life among others) when the authorities decided to let the river run with “ecological flow” to at least allow wildlife to recover minimally.

Ezaro_041_06092015 - Looking upstream from an overlook revealing a dam controlling the flow of the Rio Xallas, which is the cascading upper tiers of the Fervenza do Ezaro in this photo
Looking upstream from an overlook revealing a dam controlling the flow of the Rio Xallas, which is the cascading upper tiers of the Fervenza do Ezaro in this photo

As a result, the falls was allowed to perform naturally again, but I’m sure this tug of war between development and environmentalism will persist as such pressures between profit and preservation are ever increasing.

Experiencing Fervenza do Ezaro

Our visit to the Fervenza do Ezaro was a very simple affair.

From a car park near the hydroelectric plant (see directions below), we merely walked along the river towards the facility.

Then, the walkway continued around the building and some associated hydro contraptions before entering a boardwalk with a few miradores of the falls along the way.

Ezaro_063_06092015 - Julie and Tahia walking towards the hydroelectric facility, which they would have to skirt by to reach the Fervenza do Ezaro
Julie and Tahia walking towards the hydroelectric facility, which they would have to skirt by to reach the Fervenza do Ezaro

Eventually, the boardwalk would proceed past a “stage” area where there were steps leading down to the rocky embankment opposite the large plunge pool of Fervenza do Ezaro.

It was from here that we were able to capture the photo you see at the top of this page.

By the way, that “stage” might have been where performances or events would cater to a small audience (though this is totally a guess).

Given the high volume of the river’s flow, it would be foolish to enter the water without the risk of being swept away or pulled in by the undertow.

Ezaro_115_06092015 - The trail led us to stairs that brought us to the rocky banks of the Rio Xallas before the Fervenza do Ezaro
The trail led us to stairs that brought us to the rocky banks of the Rio Xallas before the Fervenza do Ezaro

There were also frothing bubbles accumulating on the banks of the river, which led me to think that perhaps it might be a little on the polluted side.

After all, the presence of the hydro facility, boats, and possible waste from the neighboring town might conspire to keep the water from being as clear as it could be.

Eventually, the Río Xallas would join the Atlantic Ocean as a small scale estuary.

At that estuary, we noticed there were calm beaches full of bright white sand that seemed very friendly for families under good weather.

Ezaro_218_06092015 - After visiting the Fervenza do Ezaro, we went further downstream to check out a beach fronting the town of Ezaro
After visiting the Fervenza do Ezaro, we went further downstream to check out a beach fronting the town of Ezaro

We certainly took advantage of it after our waterfalling experience.

Our visit only took about 50 minutes, but a large part of our time here was spent taking pictures.

The walk itself was probably no more than 10 or 15 minutes in each direction.

Authorities

Fervenza do Ezaro resides near the town of Silleda in the province of Pontevedra, Spain. It may be administered by the town of Ezaro or the municipality of Dumbria. For information or inquiries about the area as well as current conditions, you may get leads from this website.

Ezaro_003_06092015 - Looking upstream towards the hydroelectric dam holding up the Río Xallas from the Miradoiro do Ézaro. This was seen during the inland drive leading down to the town of Ezaro
Ezaro_011_06092015 - Looking down at the estuary of Ézaro from the Miradoiro do Ézaro
Ezaro_025_06092015 - Some unusually-shaped rocks at the Miradoiro do Ézaro
Ezaro_126_06092015 - Looking towards the Fervenza do Ézaro while we were approaching the hydroelectric facility
Ezaro_065_06092015 - The view of Fervenza do Ézaro from the first lookout spot as we walked closer to it
Ezaro_118_06092015 - Looking back at the boardwalk leading past the hydroelectric facility to the Fervenza do Ézaro
Ezaro_073_06092015 - Closer look at the Fervenza do Ézaro from one of the closer lookout spots
Ezaro_082_06092015 - Looking across the wide plunge pool at the Fervenza do Ezaro
Ezaro_130_06092015 - Looking back towards the Fervenza do Ézaro as we were leaving the falls for town
Ezaro_132_06092015 - Focused on the Fervenza do Ézaro seen from the road leading back to the town
Ezaro_145_06092015 - The narrow road between the hydroelectric plant along the Cp-2308 towards the town of Ézaro

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Fervenza do Ezaro was near the seaside town of Ezaro.

There are many ways to get from Santiago de Compostela to Ézaro, but generally speaking there was a boring inland path and a more interesting coastal path.

So to try to cover both methods, we’ll describe our own driving route, which was somewhat of a loop path that started with the inland route and returned on the coastal route.

By the way, you can easily do the drive in reverse if you don’t like the order we did it, or you could forsake one option in lieu of the other in both directions.

The choice is really up to you.

The Inland Route between Santiago de Compostela and Ezaro

From Santiago de Compostela, we drove west on the AG-56 / CG-1.5 autovía for roughly 32km.

We left the autovía to go onto the AC-550 road due north for about 1.3km until we reached a fork with the AC-554 road.

Ezaro_017_06092015 - Looking at the context of the car park and the overlook towards Ezaro from the Miradoiro do Ezaro
Looking at the context of the car park and the overlook towards Ezaro from the Miradoiro do Ezaro

We followed the GPS, which had us go right to continue on the AC-550 road for another 3km going into the town of A Serra de Outes, where we then kept right to go onto the Cp-3404 road.

We’d then follow the twisty and narrow Cp-3404 road for about 12km before turning left onto the AC-400 road at O Pino de Val.

The GPS had us take the relatively tame AC-400 road for another 9km due west before making us turn right onto another narrow road Estrada Paxareiras.

We followed this road for the next 11.4km to the Miradoiro do Ézaro (note: the road underwent a series of name changes – Barrio Curro, Estrada Barrio Noveira, Estrada Barrio Fiero, Estrada de Santa Uxia a Fieiro, then finally CP-2308).

After descending CP-2308 from the mirador, at the bottom, we then turned left towards the hydroelectric plant.

Ezaro_061_06092015 - Looking towards the Fervenza do Ezaro and hydroelectric plant from around the public parking spaces just before we started the walk to get closer
Looking towards the Fervenza do Ezaro and hydroelectric plant from around the public parking spaces just before we started the walk to get closer

This was where we found public parking so we could walk the rest of the way to the Fervenza do Ezaro.

Overall, this drive took us roughly 90 minutes though I wondered whether the GPS suggestion was really valid at all.

The Coastal Route between Ezaro and Santiago de Compostela

Anyways, on the return drive, we merely followed the CP-2308 towards the ocean.

Then, we turned left onto the AC-550, which we would take all the way around the coast for about 57km (passing by attractive beaches and coastal towns like Carnota, Lira, and Muros among others along the way).

We would eventually return on the AG-56 / CG-1.5 autovía back to Santiago de Compostela.

The return drive took us a solid 90 minutes though we took our time not passing slower drivers throughout the entire route.

Finally, for some geographical context, Santiago de Compostela was 74km (about an hour drive) south of A Coruña, 426km (over 4 hours drive) northwest of Salamanca, 607km (about 6 hours drive) northwest of Madrid, and 332km (3.5 hours drive) west of León.

Checking out the falls from various viewpoints near its base


Looking over the town of Ezaro as well as the dam and parts of the Ezaro Waterfall, including its hidden upper tiers

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Tagged with: santiago, compostela, galicia, a coruna, spain, waterfall, portugal, atlantic, rio xallas, hydroelectric



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Johnny Cheng

About Johnny Cheng

Johnny Cheng is the founder of the World of Waterfalls and author of A Guide to New Zealand Waterfalls. Over the last 2 decades, he has visited thousands of waterfalls in over 40 countries around the world and nearly 40 states in the USA.
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