A Moureira was a traditional seafaring district of great importance in the 16th century, associated with the salting tradition and the export of fish. A Moureira comprised the space located between the walled town and the coast, from the Burgo bridge to the mouth of the Gafos river and sheltered the facilities and infrastructures necessary for the development of maritime and port activities, as well as the sailors’ dwellings.
Houses of the Moureira neighborhood
During the Middle Ages and most of the Modern Age, the port of Pontevedra was the most important of the Rías Baixas. But it was from the 19th century onwards when this tradition linked to the sea was gradually lost.
Some street names and other locations are still related to the seafaring architecture of the neighbourhood, such as the travesía dos Peiraos, the plaza do Peirao, the rúa Sardiña or the rúa Pedro Sarmiento de Gamboa. Juan Villaverde Street is one of the few streets in the area that still preserves its seafaring character with typical buildings and stairs carved in rock. The Campo da Torre, where the bullring is nowadays, was the working place of the neighbours of the neighbourhood. In this same place stands the chapel of San Roque, initially built in the Avenida das Corbaceiras, and rebuilt in 1901 in the place it occupies today. Its location is not by chance, since San Roque is the lawyer against the plague, hence its location in the old seafaring quarter of the city.
Campo da torre
It was one of the great public spaces, place of work of the neighbours and on which the bullring would be built. Stories indicate that since the 17th century bullfights were held in the Herrería square, which was enclosed with wooden fences. In 1892 a wooden bullring was built which took the name of ‘San Roque’ because it was close to its chapel. Later it was demolished to build the definitive one, inaugurated on August 12th, 1900.
Juan Villaverde Street
It is one of the few streets in the area that is preserved practically the same as two centuries ago, maintaining the old feel and look of the buildings, and highlighting the stairs carved into the rock.
Chapel of San Roque
Initially erected in the Corbaceiras, it underwent several changes of location over the centuries, until it was rebuilt in 1901 on the site it occupies today. It is a modern building to which medieval elements from other temples were incorporated.
Its location is no coincidence, as San Roque is the advocate against the plague, so it was located near the peiraos where the ships arrived to protect the residents of the neighborhood against these epidemics.
Ribeira dos peiraos
Here were the peiraos-wharves and piers located at the mouth of the river Gafos, until a few years ago preserved the seafaring construction trend, of which there are still some examples.
In this place the “hospitalillo” is conserved, a construction in which an enclosed courtyard stands out, supported by high quadrangular pilasters. This building was witness, from medieval times, of the different plague epidemics that the city suffered, Gafos means leper.
In Hermanos Nodales Street on the corner of Avenida de las Corbaceiras we can see an example of what were once salt warehouses to preserve sardines, now restored for housing purposes.