The current division of Ribadeo into twelve parishes dates from 1843. The 19th century, therefore, marks a decisive turning point between the ancient Ribadeo and the modern one, a fact that is accentuated with the disappearance of the ancient wall, which marked the life of Ribadeo during the previous centuries.
Until that time, Ribadeo passed through several territorial divisions, caused mainly by his belonging to the old Galician province of Mondoñedo, in the time when Galicia had seven provinces in the mid-sixteenth century: A Coruña, Lugo, Santiago, Ourense, Betanzos, Tui and Mondoñedo.
These parishes, formed by almost 130 cores, give an idea of the dispersed population of the municipality, with the exception of the villages of Ribadeo and Rinlo (only urban center outside of the center of the town). In these recent years, Ribadeo has been absorbing some neighborhoods of Ove (Garitos, San Lazaro) and Vilaselán (Os Galos), and his urban center has increased.
The parishes near National Road - 634 and the dual carriageway, the density of population is increasing. In the more rural parishes (Arante, Cedofeita and Vilaosende), the density decreases except in Cubelas and Couxela in which this density is about of 40 people/km2, similar to the coast