Cliffs at Santa Justa Beach

May 23, 2008

052308 copy

Provided by: Gabriel Gutierrez-Alonso, Universidad de Salamanca, Spain
Summary author: Gabriel Gutierrez-Alonso 

The photo above shows the rocky, coastal cliffs at Santa Justa Beach, Spain, located near the village of Ubiarco in Cantabria, Spain. These cliffs give geologists an opportunity to study limestone outcrops, which were formed when Cretaceous sediment was folded into an anticline. The more friable layers were located in the core of the anticline. Eventually, wave action created a void in the cliffs, and this convenient cavity has been used as a religious shelter since Roman times. In the twelfth century, it was dedicated to Santa Justa. The unique “geological church” filling the void was built in the sixteenth century. Each year on July 19, a huge fiesta (Romeria) is held at this location.