Lastres, in the municipality of Colunga, the 2014 spring has been added to the select club of «Most beautiful villages in Spain». It still houses one of the most famous port prints in Asturias. Fishing boats with the stepped bottom of a beautiful fishing village, they are one of the most representative images of the maritime essence of the region.
Streets mostly narrow and narrow, cobbled like those of before and always on slope, are the thousand and one small arteries through which the social life of some homes that seem to hang towards the abyss and that they have always had in the sea the exact reflection of their own inclination. The beautiful balconies stand out everywhere and the proximity of the houses to each other, which seem to have been built to protect each other from the beams of the Bay of Biscay. The labyrinth is of white walls, saltpeter and capricious symmetries. There are more angles and perspectives in Ballasts than in any other village nearby.
The port of Lastres
Almost from any point you can see the beautiful harbor lastrino. Currently, around fifty boats dock there. After being remodeled in 1995 with the construction of a jetty of 55 meters, it is located at the head of activity in the eastern coastal strip. The approximately 400 tons of fish per year, with 8 tons per month of hake, 6 of conger and 5 of monkfish and red mullet, continue to allow the confraternity latrine to balance the accounts and the town to continue presuming to live facing the sea, as usual.
In the whale circles always occupied Lastres a prominent place, also served as a fortress against possible invasions by sea. Hence, it once had a fort, known as "El Castillo", of which some of its walls are still preserved.
Nowadays the fishing tradition continues to feed its legend. The marine species, once they are landed in port, go on sale in a popular auction which, day after day, happens in the fish market. Fishmongers come from all parts of the region find a guarantee for their sales in the marine activity of a locality with a seasoned experience in inshore and high seas fishing.
Recently, and to give greater impetus to its own marine reality, glimpses of canning recovery with an initiative of artisan character integrated in the facilities of the wharf and that already brings to the market 3.500 kilograms of anchovies to the year.
The new company feeds exclusively on the catches of local boats, and its artisanal and laborious process will be destined to the delicatessen shops. There is thus a first step to counteract the flight of fishing capital and rescue part of the importance achieved by the local canneries at the beginning of the 20th century. At that time 10 Ballasts were counted in companies of this type, whose vestiges and ruins are still visible in the vicinity of the dock.
In the port of Lastres, in spite of the dwindling figures of the fishing that are spoken of day after day, the possibilities that can still be expected from the sector are not thrown overboard. The demands of nautical tourism and the new commercial perspectives that are opened in the region, also place this rich village in the maritime realm of eastern Asturias.
The village of Lastres
Ballasts is declared A Historic, which also makes it a point of tourist interest. It is definitely a good stay. To the grateful sea breeze and to the beautiful formation of the urban nucleus, it is possible to add a good number of gastronomic arguments, since they continue having presence restaurants specialized in all type of fish. The kitchen latrine It owes its port, the nets, pots and hooks, but also the culinary knowledge of the houses, which for centuries have had the first and tastiest of their dishes in fish. A good fish dish is a guarantee here and we will eat it by our own conviction.
If you have time, get close to Clock Tower, an emblematic tower that combines the functions of belfry and watchtower, built in 1751, and rebuilt thanks to the efforts of a group of women. Also interesting is the visit to the parish church of Santa María de Sábada, of 1751, which mixes the classic and baroque styles, or the hermitages of San José, San Roque (where a beautiful viewpoint of the port and the Colungués coast is located) and Good Success Casonas and palaces like that of the Victorero family, from the 18th century, that of the Robledo family, from the beginning of the 18th century, and that of the Vallados, from the 18th century, is another richness, of a cultural nature, that this town has.
Lastres and its adjacent coast also settle on the cliffs with more history of the region. The Tertiary lands of the Jurassic are another possible alternative to get closer to here, including the beach of the Greekwith imposing dinosaur footprints.Text: © Ramón Molleda for desdeasturias.com