Santoña's history has been always tied to the sea, up to such a point that is the first port in the conserves industry of the Cantabrian sea. Santoña is known for its tuna and anchovies in olive oil.
Geographically, Santoña is divided in two differentiated well zones: a plain, where settles itself the urban part of the city and a mountainous zone where raises the hillside of the "Brusco"and the "Buciero".
The history of the villa is tied to the Monastery of Santa Maria of the Port, which after lead to the Romanesque church of Santa Maria of the Port.
The military fortifications are also very significant which are grouped around the "Buciero" mount , showing the strategic importance of the port. Obviously, the products of the sea and the conserves of fish are the base of the gastronomy.
Nevertheless, maybe the more significant sign of identity of Santoña is the Natural Reserve of the Marshes (in mouth of the river Asón). This is a protected area that relies on rich and varied ecosystems, crucials to shelter a big variety of aquatic birds.