Salto do Coro was kind of our waterfalling break as we made the long drive between Santiago de Compostela and Ribadeo. Although it wasn’t big (probably 10-15m tall), it had a lush and intimate setting as it seemed like this was one of the more unknown waterfalls to people not familiar with this part of Galicia. Indeed, Julie, Tahia, and I were the only ones here throughout our time spent away from the car on this excursion. Further adding to the scenic allure of this place was that this falls was located near the town of Mondoñedo, which itself was a charming town featuring an attractive cathedral as well as a charming center in a somewhat understated setting, and there were also caves in the vicinity of town.
While I was hoping that our waterfalling excursion would be quick, it turned out that reaching this falls was a little bit tricky because there weren’t signs for it until the very end. I actually had to spend an hour or so just finding the info center (which was pretty much reachable only by foot in the center of town), then figuring out where I was on the map before finding the correct driving route to the falls.Anyhow, the hike to the falls from the unofficial car park or trailhead (see directions below) was said to take only 10 minutes in each direction according to the tourist literature I was given (and according to the signage here as well). However, I would caveat that by saying that the trail could be a little overgrown in places, and given the tendency of this part of Spain to rain a lot, the trail could also be a bit on the slippery side as well as a little less defined in spots (though it was still quite simple to follow).
The trail meandered gently uphill amidst a dense canopy of vegetation befitting of a temperate rainforest. It seemed like the trail managed to get enough use to at least discern the footpath, but I can easily envision how quickly the vegetation can grow and cover up the worn sections thereby concealing the trail if there were no visitors for a while. Anyhow, the trail would continue climbing while getting a bit steeper of a climb the further up it went. Eventually, the trail reached a bridge traversing the creek responsible for the falls (called Regueiro de Argomoso), and then the trail would climb steeply up some partially concealed stone steps. It was this section that I thought could be slippery and potentially hazardous if not careful.
Finally at the top of the steps, the path ended shortly thereafter at the plunge pool and base of the Salto do Coro. Despite what the signs had said, it took us 50 minutes round trip to cover the hiking and the picture taking.
While driving up to the trailhead, I also noticed that quite a few people were either riding bikes or walking from town to other destinations around the Mondoñedo area. If Salto do Coro was to be walked from town, it would be 9km in each direction, which I’d imagine would take the better part of a day.
From Santiago de Compostela, we drove about 60km on the AP-9 (a toll autovía) then headed east on the A-6 for about 48km. Then, we took the A-8 north for about 42km before getting off the autovía at exit 384 to get onto the N-634 road. We then followed the N-634 road into the town of Mondoñedo.
Once in the town’s perimeters, we followed the Travesia de Carlos Folgueira to a roundabout to Avenida de Bos Aires (right). We then followed this road as it eventually entered the Barrio Dos Muiños (heading in the southeast direction; turning right after 200m, then another right after 800m, then left after another 200m). The Barrio Dos Muiños was the key to getting to Salto do Coro from Mondoñedo.
Once we were on route to the Barrio Dos Muiños, we followed the Barrio Muiño road for about 1.4km passing a bridge along the way (by now we finally started seeing signs for “Salto do Coro”), and then down a narrow dirt road with grass growing up the middle of it for the final 600m. The trailhead didn’t have much room for parked cars (maybe one or two tops) so I wasn’t sure if it was a sanctioned spot to stop.
If you were like us and happened to be inside the center of Mondoñedo, then the key to finding Barrio Dos Muiños was to take the signed road by an old fountain (Fonte Vella) near the turnoff for the cathedral and the Casa natal de Alvaro Cunqueiro. From this intersection, the road would directly join up with the route to Barrio Dos Muiños. I actually had to walk around the center of town to find the tourist info center, then get some advice by the worker there about how to get to the falls from where I was at.
By the way, it took us about 50 minutes to get from Salto do Coro to Ribadeo along the N-634 and A-8 routes so that’s something to consider if coming in the other direction.
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.
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