The Horse Lighthouse In Cantabria And Its Secrets

The Horse Lighthouse in Cantabria and its secrets

Join us on this trip to one of the most incredible corners of the Spanish geography. We refer to the Faro del Caballo in Cantabria, a magical place full of secrets that offers impressive views of the Cantabrian Sea. 

To be exact and specific, we have to say that the Faro del Caballo in Cantabria is located precisely in the beautiful town of Santoña, famous for its excellent coasts and its magnificent anchovies, unique in the world for their incredible flavor.

We continue to specify the location of the Faro del Caballo and in this case we are talking about Monte Buciero, a steep and rough terrain on the coast that makes access to this peculiar architecture really difficult, since to get there you have to go down a narrow staircase of more than 680 steps. However, the effort is really worth it.

Horse Lighthouse
Lighthouse of the Horse – Jose Luis Lopez / Flickr.com

However, it is not the only access found to reach the walls of the Faro del Caballo in Cantabria. Intended for access by sailors who arrived by boat, there is a staircase of more than 100 steps to climb from the coast. Of course, it is in this case the Cantabrian Sea that will give its final judgment, since at high tide, this structure disappears under the swaying of the waves.

How is the Horse Lighthouse in Cantabria

Let’s see below some details of this unique Cantabrian structure. The Lighthouse of the Horse is built with a façade made of masonry and plastered masonry. In addition, it is divided into a couple of blocks, of which the first was intended for the home of the person in charge of the proper functioning of the structure, that is, the lighthouse keeper.

As is often the case, the Faro del Caballo in Cantabria has a cylindrical shape, crowned by a large glass lantern under the spherical roof. Inside, a narrow corridor leads to the top, about 24 meters above sea level.

Horse Lighthouse View
Lighthouse of the Horse – Raúl Hernández González / Flickr.com

History of the Horse Lighthouse in Cantabria

The history of the Lighthouse of the Horse in Cantabria consists of more than 150 years since this spectacular building was erected. In fact, its operation and start-up took place in the distant August 31, 1863  and it was fully operational until 1993, when the activity ceased due to the complexity of accessing it.

It is curious that, today, it is the only lighthouse that remains inactive as such in the entire region.  However, it has found a new life as a pilgrimage center for the bravest hikers and adventurers, who come up the steep cliffs of Monte Buciero to admire this fantastic Cantabrian work.

Another curiosity,  the irregular staircase that leads down to the lighthouse was built many years ago by the inmates of the Dueso prison, very close to the place. Difficult work for those deprived of liberty that today helps us to access a beautiful corner of Santoña.

Access to the Horse Lighthouse in Cantabria

Thus, accessing the Faro del Caballo in Cantabria on foot is an adventure reserved for the most daring. Crossing the roads that lead to it, you can enjoy impressive and deep cliffs seasoned with strong defenses that once served for the maritime defense of the place.

However, the audacity of accessing the Faro del Caballo in Cantabria is worth it, since the 40-minute journey to reach the structure through the 682 steps are truly spectacular due to the impressive views.

Stairs to El Caballo Lighthouse
Stairs to the El Caballo Lighthouse – Sergio Gutierrez Getino

And if nature is your thing in its purest form, you can always follow your route from the Caballo Lighthouse to the Protected Area of ​​the Santoña, Victoria and Joyel Marshes Nature Reserve, a beautiful place full of migratory birds, whose unique species you will only be able to see in that area.

But if your thing is to sail the seas on sailing or motor boats, you can also access the Faro del Caballo in Cantabria along the coast. We already said that there is a staircase of 111 steps to follow this route, so you can join the many boats that decide to reach this picturesque place sailing through the waters of Santoña.

Coast of Santoña
Coast of Santoña – José Antonio Larrasoaña

So, don’t forget that in Santoña you have one of the most magical corners of the north coast of Spain. The Horse Lighthouse in Cantabria is well worth the effort of every visitor to enjoy its impressive views in its imperial location.

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