Walk the end of the Road of St. James pilgrimage route. Follow in the footsteps of countless pilgrims who have followed this route to Santiago de Compostela, the “Field of Stars”. The Road has something for everyone: a physical challenge, cultural learning, a group experience, a personal journey… what will you discover along the way?
Highlights of this route: Talking with the pilgrims from all over the world. Soaking up the special feeling of the thousand-year-old Road, rich in cultural and spiritual traditions (the Way of St. James is a UNESCO World Heritage Site). Looking for “horreos” – traditional wooden corn cribs that come in different styles. Octupus in a certain bar in Melide – it’s good elsewhere, but this is one of the best places, with the traditional wine in pottery saucer-cups. First sight of Santiago. The thrill of reaching the “0” kilometer marker in front of Santiago’s beautiful Cathedral. And if you dare…. take a tour of the Cathedral’s rooftops!
Best times of year: May, June, September
Best group size: 6-10 people.
Trip description: Walk the last 103 kilometers, from a little west of Sarria. Most pilgrims do this in 5 days but we do it in 6 days (challenging) or 7 days (fairly easy). This distribution allows staying in simple hotels right on the Road (instead of bussing off), and gets us to Santiago by about noon on last walking day, so pilgrim office is not so crowded and we have all afternoon to explore one of Spain’s prettiest cities. Accomodation in hotels (not pilgrim hostels), luggage transported so you only carry a day pack.
Terrain : Galicia is rolling, with lots of small to medium ups and downs. Nothing huge, and not difficult if you pace yourself right. Most of the last 100 kms is on good dirt road or asphalt, with some trail. Some places can be muddy if it’s rained recently, good to have dry socks with you at all times. We’ll be in and out of forest, first oaks then eucalyptus: some days are quite shady and others quite sunny.
Weather: Galicia is one of Spain’s cooler and wetter regions. In May-June temperatures will probably be in the twenties celsius / seventies farenheit, though it could be cooler or warmer. There is some chance of rain (where not?) but rain in Galicia is usually a soft, intermittent drizzle, not a downpour, and would probably not be all day nor every day.