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The Valley of Balboa

The valley of Balboa is one of the four valleys belonging to the region of Los Ancares in Leon. It is situated on its most occidental part and was declared Biosphere Reserve in 2006 through the UNESCO.

On top of its landscape the Valley of Balboa is particular for its Pallozas (traditional houses with a straw roof) , its church and its castle.


The village of Balboa is a departing point for the interesting hiking routes to Cantexeira, Castañoso, and the Olive fountain. In summertime one can enjoy its beach on the river. On St James Day, a celebration of its Celtic night is organized as well as a famous Reggae Music Festival (please look for the exact dates).
You can start the route in the Casa de las Gentes (House of the People), which is a cultural space close to the river Balboa and the traditional palloza, which opened back in 2010 and which is also the Tourist Office. In front of it you can visit the Church Santa Marina, dating XVI century, and its nice baroque altarpiece.

You can also visit the castle of Balboa and its tribute tower. Its origins are dating back in the XIII century, with the family Rodríguez de Valcárce. Here is celebrated, on Saint James (San Juan), the Noche Mágica (Magical Night), a celebration declared of Regional Interest in Castile and Leon.

It is said that the "Palloza of Cantejeira or Cantexeira" is one of the oldest pieces of the region. You can now enjoy having a drink or a good meal inside while seeing a large exhibit of fantastic and Celtic sculpture.  There is another collection of Pallozas and Hórreos de Teito (traditional constructions where the harvest was kept) outside of the village and some few more with their roofs covered with metal panels.

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