Catalonian Modernism in Cantabria

In the Western coast of España, is the modern city of Comillas, Cantabria. Visit our page on the history of Comillas if you wish to learn about its beautiful monuments. Another interesting alternative is the active tourism options that are detailed in the plans specializing in active tourism in the province of Cantabria page. And now, where to sleep, what to eat, and what are the best restaurants in this area.

Plan your stay in Comillas

Comillas is one of the most beautiful localities in Cantabria. Things to do in Comillas will not take you more than one day. Among them, we can highlight: The Capricho of Gaudí, Sobrellano’s Palace and San Cristóbal’s cemetery. Besides, you can also visit some near localities such as Santillana del MarSan Vicente de la Barquera or Oyambre Natural Park. Comillas was declared a Historic-Artistic Site in 1985 and it has gorgeous façades that you cannot miss.

Do you want to visit this place?

In the old town, the plaza can be traced back to the middle ages. It is surrounded by different houses with lookouts. The Town Hall exhibits several interesting façades and it houses the Interpretation Center from the town. San Cristóbal Church (17th century), built by the inhabitants of Comillas themselves. Its southern façade has the shields of Comillas and from the crown. The Campíos Corro is the traditional meeting place used by the people from Comillas. Some other interesting spots are the New Town Hall (19th century) and Ocejo House, where the king Alfonso XII stayed during the summer of 1881, turning Comillas into the capital of Spain for one day. You cannot go inside the building (Gaudí designed a chimney and the living room) but you can admire its gorgeous façade. The Three Caños Fountain symbolizes one important episode in our history: it was Comillas the first town in Spain where electric light was installed.

The Espolón (1804), classicist in style, is an interesting building to see in Comillas. It was meant to become a school but it is nowadays a cultural center. Outside Comillas, in Santa Lucía viewpoint, we can enjoy some views of the beach. Here we can find a chapel housing an image of a saint to which fishermen prayed before sailing. Comillas also stands out because of its modernist buildings, fostered by Antonio López, first marquis of Comillas. It was him who hired Lluis Domènech i Montaner and Gaudí. The latter was in charge of designing El Capricho (1883-1885): a whim among trees, exemplifying the blending of art, music and nature. It is a summer residence which can be highlighted because the sunlight illuminates the different rooms of the construction depending on the day. El Capricho was declared a Historical-Artistic Site in 1969.

Next to El Capricho we find the Sobrellano’s Palace (1882-1888), neo-Gothic in style. The Mausoleum-Chapel is part of this building. The furniture was also designed by Gaudí. In La Cardosa hill, we find the Old Pontifical University, meant to teach Spanish. San Cristóbal Cemetery is another main sight that attracts many visitors. It is built upon an old Gothic church and it has several modernist mausoleums. Finally, the Comillas’ port is one of the Cantabrian ports devoted to capture whales.


Practical Data


43° 23′ 13″ N, 4° 17′ 22″ W


Santander 48 km, Santillana del Mar 16 km, Madrid 458 km


27 m


2374 (2013)

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