Covalanas Cave

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Site type:
Site function:
Decor cave
43.24, -3.45

The Covalanas Cave is a cavity located near Ramales de la Victoria, Cantabria, Spain. Its access is about 700 m from the N-629 road, in a wall formed by the Calera River. It is included in the list of UNESCO World Heritage since July 2008, within the set "Cave of Altamira and Palaeolithic rock art of the Cantabrian coast".​

The cave is one of those that make up the archaeological zone of Ramales, which makes up a unit according to its chronology, typology, and situation and defines an outstanding aspect of the Cantabrian culture.

It was discovered, like so many others in the area, by Hermilio Alcalde del Río and the priest Lorenzo Sierra, in 1903.

The cave as such has a large shelter for the mouth, and from there arise two practically parallel galleries. The one on the right -as you go down- is the one that contains the cave manifestations that have made the cave famous. From the speleological point of view, this gallery has hardly any formations and, therefore, lacks interest in general lines.

The gallery on the right contains a large number of red figures, among which deer predominate, of various sizes and oriented both inside and outside the cave. The technique to perform them, in general, is buffering. In addition to the nearly 20 deer, there is a horse, an aurochs, some parts of unidentified animals, such as a head or torso, and some signs whose meaning is unknown.