The Prehistoric Park in Teverga houses the most relevant collection of Cave Art in Europe and it has between 10.000 and 40.000 years of antiquity. When visiting it, we can enjoy a wiser view about the Palaeolithic. Our visit will lasts for two hours and during this time we will be informed about the life of the primitive man, mainly focusing on its hard reality, and sharing its way of seeing the world.
In this same place, the Prehistoric Park of Teverga, we can also interpret more wisely all this cultural treasure, overall the wall paintings.
It was 40.000 years ago when the first Homo Sapiens Sapiens came to Europe. They were moving towards the Neanderthal lands and at that time they became the dominant species. They used to live in caves and they also used to wear natural coats in this last phase of the Glacial Age. They were the first inhabitants endowed with a symbolic mentality and for that, they were also the first artists. The Cantabrian area (North of Spain) was a privileged scene for this kind of art, since after the last glaciation most Europe was inhabited to be fully covered by the ice. The Palaeolithic was then subscribed to mountains formed of limestone where there are lots of caves and, in Asturias have been found up today forty stations of Palaeolithic art, some of them really exceptional. Here we can find all types of prehistoric paintings in the Asturian caves, since the most remote to the magdalenian style found in the famous Cave of Tito Bustillo.
Where is the Prehistoric Park?
It is placed only at 40 kilometers from the city of Oviedo, in the locality of San Salvador of Alesga (Teverga). This Prehistoric Park is the biggest of replications of that stage of Humankind, with exact copies of the main European deposits of Palaeolithic painting and movement art, all these selected upon a rigorous scientific criteria. These are wonderful reproductions, copies, recreations, photographies, models and reconstructions. The replicas, very reliable to the original ones, are organized according to a didactic and enjoyable aim.
The location of this park is in a valley of great ecological value and surrounded by a natural wonderful landscape far from human settlements. This museum is under the ground, in this way we get closer to daily life of cave men. There are 25 virginias down Peña Sobia, just in the middle of the Natural Park of the Ubiñas.
What can we discover in the park?
This museum is formed by three buildings. In the first one there is the reception and the Café. After a short walk and crossing the river Paramo over a new bridge, we can see another building shaped as a half moon, covered with vegetation and called The galery. Then we are entering in a space of more than one thousand square meters. Inside we can find a complex audiovisual circuit, documents, painting reproductions and different engravings of the Superior Palaeolithic, such as the one of the horses of Chauvet and the black cow of Lascaux, both in France. On the central ceiling we find the Altamira bisons (made by the same people who made the replica of the Altamira Caves in the Altamira museum, and those works lasted for two years in order to get an exact reproduction of the paintings). Inside this room we can also find replicas of the Camarín de deers in Covalanas (Cantabria), the Bear Groute in Ekain (Basque Country), The Bisons of La Covaciella in Cabrales (Asturias), the sign panel in the cave of Llonín in Peñamellera Alta (Asturias), and different old tools and figures from Spain, France, Germany, Austria, the Czech Republic or Russia.
In this artificial gallery we can understand better why the Palaeolithic art emerged, who and which techniques were used in cave paintings, and what is the real meaning that has been given to them in the last two hundred years by scientific searchers. From each cave most important paintings have been chosen, in order to show more clearly the prehistoric artist's motivation.
Some theories link these paintings with spare time, fertility, hunting but others try to prove shamen did them under certain altered states of consciousness. This could be based on the idea that they were venerating some animals, so they would draw them on the walls, creating at the same time a signed codified language. The cave would be female, symbolizing all her ulterior world.
The third building, next to the previous one, is called "Cueva de Cuevas" and this name is due to its relevant three cave galleries. These are exact copies made of natural diers, the same used in those ages. The limestone of the walls and ceilings has the same appearance as in those times, with some cracks and light reflections and its structure, humidity, darkness and silence have been also kept. In a 25 minute visit We can go through these three places, beginning by the Gallery of Horses of Tito Bustillo where we can appreciate the richness of horse representations. From this cave we move to the replica of The Cave of Niaux (the original is in France) to contemplate the Black Site, where we find the most well figured drawings. From this second building we come back to Asturias to observe the reproduction of the Camerin of the Cave of Candamo where we explained how these first artists looked for an image, and after they drew it on their cave walls attending to their reliefs. Along this visit we are walking down to irregular and uneven ground as if they were inside the original caves. In some cases we may follow a lantern light because of its interior darkness.
To sum up we can say that The Prehistoric Park of Teverga is unique and its replicas are of extraordinary realism. This is the opinion of Jean Clottes, responsible for the scientific research in the cave of Chauvet. He is the general curator of the French patrimony and today he is the current president of the International Committee of Cave Art.Text: © Ramón Molleda for desdeasturias.com
Information of interestLocations:
San Salvador de Alesga, s / n.
33111 - Teverga
Contact telephone: 902 306 600 - 985 764 739
How to get there?
From Oviedo: A-63, direction Trubia Km 9
From Trubia: AS-228 direction Window Port.
GPS: 43º 8 '21,41 "N, 6º 4' 29,81" W
From 1 to 28 February and from 1 December 2016 (low season) 31:
Wednesday through Friday from 10: 00 to 14: 30 and 15: 30 to 17: 30 hours.
Saturdays, Sundays and holidays from 10: 30 to 14: 30 and 15: 30 to 18: 00 hours.
Monday and Tuesday closed except 5 and 6 December.
Closed: 1 to January 31 and 24, 25 and 31 December.
From March 1 to June 30 and from September 1 to November 30, 2016 (midseason):
Wednesday through Friday from 10: 00 to 14: 30 and 15: 30 to 18: 00.
Saturdays, Sundays and holidays from 10: 30 to 14: 30 and 16: 00 to 19: 00 hours.
In November, the weekend schedule will be from 10: 30 to 14: 30 and 15: 30 to 18: 00 h.
Monday and Tuesday closed except 28 and 29 March, May 2, October 31 and November 1.
From 1 July 2016 to August (high season) 31:
Every day, from 10: 30 to 14: 30 and 16: 00 to 20: 00 hours.
General: 6,12 €
Reduced: 3,57 €
Groups of more than 20 people, kids from 4 to 11 years old, large families, people with disabilities accredited, people older than 65, ICOM members.
Entry + workshops:
* General: 7,72 €
* Reduced: 5,17 €
Educational Workshops: 1,60 €
Activities on reservation: prehistoric birthday, courses and seminars and thematic workshops weeks.
Variety of workshops for all public well suited for family holidays, weekends and holidays in low and middle season, and every day in high season. Duration 30 minutes. Limited places.
For group visits, both children and adults, as we have workshops for the group. Duration 1 ½ hours (1 hour 30 minute visit and workshop). Participants: minimum 10, maximum 30.