Descent of the Sella, tradition and adventure

La Sella is a small river located in the north of Spain which flows into the Cantabrian Sea. Throughout the year, any nature lover can come and enjoy this river and the magnificent landscapes that surround it along its entire length, in addition to the unmissable descent of the Sella by canoe, an adventure in which you can travel the river in a course of about 15 km divided into sections with stops.

Traditionally, since 1930, an international canoeing event known as the Descent of the Sella has taken place.

On the first Saturday of August, as long as 1, 2 or 3 does not fall, the International Descent of the Sella River has been taking place for more than 90 years between the bridges of Arriondas (Parres) and Ribadesella, a canoe- very prestigious kayak, which accompanies a great party throughout the weekend.

The 20 km event has become a great celebration of international tourist interest where participants of various nationalities arrive.

Without a doubt, it is one of the most popular activities in Asturias.


Characteristics of the Sella River

The Sella River has its source in the Picos de Europa in the hell fountainat a place Jonseyabelonging to the town and municipality of Oseja de Sajambre (province of León) and flows into the Cantabrian Sea forming the Ribadesella estuary.

In total, it is only 56 kilometers long, with an average flow of just over forty cubic meters per second and a basin of 1,284 square kilometers.

Of incomparable beauty, this river invites you to navigate it and enjoy the best views of its course from the water.

La Sella is considered a fast river but that should not intimidate us since the difficulty of navigating it is very low. It has faster, but safe parts.

Due to these characteristics, the descent of the Sella is a Ideal activity to do with the family.

Where does the Sella descent begin?

The canoe descent of the Sella for tourist and recreational purposes begins in Arriondas and ends in Ribadesella.

This long section lasts approximately between 2 and 4 hours, depending on the stops made or not along the way.

These stops have the option of getting out of the canoes to take pictures, take a swim in the river, or walk a bit.

There are also several “chiringuitos” where it is possible to eat and drink something to regain energy. It is therefore possible to spend the whole day enjoying this ride.

Descent of the Sella by canoe

Who can do this activity?

It is the perfect activity for those who love nature and adventure. It can be done by groups of friends, schoolchildren, couples or families with children from 5 years old (or taller than 1.15 meters)

You don’t need to be in the physical condition of an athlete to be able to canoe down the Sella. It is a moderate to low activity, since the same current of the river naturally accompanies the descent.

But yes, one of the conditions is to know how to swim since, even if you navigate with a lifejacket, it is possible to fall into the water in some fast parts of the river and it is better to prevent accidents.

When is the best time for this activity?

The summer months are the best to do the descent of the Sella to get wet without problems and fully enjoy the route.

Although in summer it does not have its maximum flow, the river offers numerous rapids along the way that guarantee an adrenaline rush.

The crystal clear waters allow you to appreciate the depth of the river at any time and thus prepare for the obstacles that will arise.

The rest of the year, and if the weather is nice, it is possible to take the walk at Easter and from July 1 to October 31. It is advisable to check with the companies that take care of these visits the availability of the activity.

There is no doubt that the descent of the Sella is a complete activity that guarantees fun for everyone in an incredible natural setting.

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