As its own name suggests, the town of Caldas, at only 9 kilometers from the capital of this region, is a unique thermal village. Linked since the 18th century to its spa, the environment still keeps that magic and nostalgic essence of those thermal places. It was connected to health and bourgeoisie's leisure time during the 19th century. It was also a source of romantic legends, a cradle of intellectuals and above all, it is today a privileged place for relaxing. This spa answers to all of our daily needs.
The town of The Caldas, apart from its warm water, is a perfect environment very close to the main urban center of this region. Here we find different protected places, green roads, vast native forests and a splendorous Asturian landscape.
The small urban center of this village is perfectly shaped in every corner. Its architecture and walks go together with its quiet life in the outskirts. Nowadays, after decades of abandonment, The Caldas tries to pick up its old "vacation pulse" with a great investment of money in its spa. The first building work will go over 44 millions of euros and the first phase of it is thought to be open to the public by the summer of 2007. The whole building work will be carried out over an area of 32.000 square meters. In this space a five star hotel with 171 rooms will be built for conventions with different services and with a great spa. This plan aspires to build a spa that could be a good referent for the whole country. And old jewel building that will keep its original physiognomy.
The history of The Caldas
The history of the spa of The Caldas started in 1722 with a plan that put the canalization of thermal water into practice, the construction of a building of bathrooms and rooms for sick people who could use this healthy water. In the 19th century it was reformed and reached its highest peak. Although from the first third of the 20th onwards it underwent to progressive decline that kept The Caldas only opened during summer time. In 2004 it closed its doors definitely.
The current concept of healthy tourism conceives thermal spas not only as therapeutic centers but as preventive ones ideal for relaxing and leisure time. This new view has favored the interest to open this center eleven more. The water from The Caldas would serve again for general health and beauty thanks to its oligomatalic, calcic, magnesic, bicarbonated and radioactive properties especially suitable for rheumatism, respiratory system diseases and neurological problems.
The natural environment of The Caldas
Apart from the baths, the natural environment of this village well deserves a quiet visit. The architectonical Castle of Priorio placed over a hill and over the valley of Nalón, is a legendary fortification with two high towers and it is also semi hidden by a deed forest and surrounded by the river Gafo. This castle was built in the 19thcentury over the ruins of an old historical building of the times of Alfonso II. This was a property of the diocese of Oviedo and today it is a private property.
The temple of San Juan of Priorio is an excellent example of the Romanesque Asturian art. From it we can highlight its front, unique in Asturias. On it is carved the vision of Maestas according to biblical texts. Christ is sat down on a throne, as the unique sovereign of the world, imposing his blessing and using it for his index, middle and thumb fingers.
The Cave of Caldas is another important attraction of this village. This is a protected space of 600 meters of depth that serves as a habitat for a colony of bats which are in danger of extinction. This cavern, as a result of the excavations of the 60's, has been qualified as one of the most important archaeological sites from the Superior Paleolithic of this region.
Near The Caldas, the town called "Fuso de la Reina" has become an important point for those walking lovers and cyclists who ride by a pedestrian path which used to be the old train station. It is a green that follows 25 kilometers between the councils of Oviedo and Tuñón. In order to complete this route we will have to cross 8 tunnels and 3 bridges. This route links the Green Via (Via Verde): the path of bears at the point of Fuso (we can get there following the old train's route and a number of rural paths). In some points in this route we will have a good meal at some wooden tables and chairs that have especially been there to have lunch or supper.
In Caldas as well we can spend a good time at its leisure centers such as the golf course and its public swimming-pool.
If you are interested in more information about spa and wellness in Asturias ...Text: © Ramón Molleda for desdeasturias.com
Information of interestIf accessed from the A-66 (Oviedo-León) in regard to Oviedo , 8 Km. Before reaching Oviedo take exit 36 that connects with the N-630, direction Soto Ribera -Morcín-Riosa. At the first crossroads that we turn left, heading Soto Ribera - Mieres. We follow the N-630. At 800 meters turn right towards Soto Ribera for the AS-322. After a level crossing to a signal that indicates the direction of Las Caldas.
If accessed by the A-66 (Oviedo-León) from Gijón, Avilés and Santander must, before reaching Oviedo, at the fork located 5 Km. take the Oviedo Ronda Interior, Leon and then take exit 31 Grade-La Espina. Once there, we take exit 4, N-634, Oviedo West. Cross two roundabouts where we continue towards Grado-La Espina. At 300 meters turn left: direction Las Caldas, by the As-322