My first foray into Spain was into the drab and gloomy port of Vigo. I say this because this was my first impression. Not a lot of color to the buildings. Upon entering the port, its just a short walk into the town center. No need for a shuttle. There may be 2 or 3 ships in port with you.
The first interesting thing you see as you amble toward town is a very unique art installation of a man with his face to the ground, legs behind him. Its very unique and sits directly at the edge of the port and town. I did some research and found out that this sculpture is by Francisco Leiro and called the Swimmer (El Nadador) to honor the achievements of swimmers. Later, as I walked around Vigo, I discovered another sculpture of a swimmer. This one called the Jump (El Salto). I may have these mixed up because I don’t speak Spanish, ha.
Walking up into the town, through the gray walled buildings of the historic district and out the other side is the commercial center of town. The main street stretches for many miles and is packed with modern shops. At the center of this thoroughfare is another rather interesting sculpture, perched high and overlooking the city. El Sireno, also by Francisco Leiro, looks like a giant male mermaid. Walking further into the city, I came across a statue to honor seafaring workers pulling a net. This statue is plopped in the middle of a busy street at the intersection. I needed to investigate the world of Vigo sculpture even more, so I took a right turn and walked several kilometers until I came to a roundabout featuring horses galloping to the sky! Wow, the public art in Vigo is amazing and sets off the rather dreary buildings . I’ve been to Vigo several times, and its a sharp contrast to other Spanish cities I’ve visited. Mainly a gray, washed out look offset by some amazing public sculpture. Vigo is located in the northwest part of Spain, directly north of Portugal.