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3
moderate

Traveller Rating

 

Activities
  • self guided walk
Accommodation
  • 11 nights in comfortable hotels
Meals
  • 9 Dinners
  • 11 Breakfasts

12 Days£1240GBP

Overview

Trip Code: PC4

Trip highlights


  • Enjoying a quieter pilgrimage route
  • Experiencing culinary delights
  • Enjoying the mix of scenery from the coast to the greenery of Galicia
  • Walking to the fabled church of Santiago de Compostela

The Portuguese Coastal Route is one of the quieter Camino paths and it offers a wealth of history. From the town of Viana do Castelo, not far from the city of Porto, the journey travels north through small hamlets, past eucalyptus and pine woods, over ancient bridges and along stunning coastal scenery. Throughout the journey there are ample reminders of past pilgrims and the route offers many insights into the religious significance of the Camino. Crossing the Spanish border and walking the last 100kms through Galicia to the holy city of Santiago ensures you qualify for the Compostela certificate upon your arrival at the cathedral.

Countries:

Portugal, Spain

Starting Point:

Viana do Castelo

Finishing Point:

Santiago de Compostela


Itinerary

Make your own way to Viana do Castelo and check in to the first hotel. Viana do Castelo is a beautiful city located in the Minho region in North Portugal. With an appealing medieval centre, the 5th Century Cathedral and the Basilica of Santa Lucia, and beaches just outside the city there is plenty to see this afternoon.

Meals:  Nil

The walk today is a gentle one, and you'll be sure to enjoy the sea-air as you walk along the coast. Your destination for the day is the small but charming town of Praia de Ancora. This afternoon you can take the opportunity to swim in the Atlantic ocean. Overnight Praia de Ancora.

Meals:  B,D

As you leave Villa Prais de Ancora you'll continue onto the beach of Praia de Moledo. You then leave the coast slightly, walking through forest and back to a boardwalk before reaching Caminha, the last town before crossing into Spain on your ferry trip. You will need to take the ferry to A Guarda where you will overnight (ferry tickets to be purchased locally).

Meals:  B,D

Leaving from A Guardia this morning, the trail takes you around the peninsula, with ample opportunities to stop for a coffee or lunch and enjoy the magnificent beach scenery before continuing your walk to the lovely small village of Oia. Overnight Viladesuso or Oia.

Meals:  B,D

The walk today is a real feast for all senses. For the first 10km the route takes you along a coastal footpath away from the main road. You then continue along picturesque coastline, walking along the boardwalk, all while enjoying stunning views of the Atlantic Ocean. On a clear day you should be able to see the Cies islands. Overnight Baiona.

Meals:  B,D

As you leave Baiona you will walk alongside sandy beaches for most of the day. There is also plenty of opportunities to take a break in a lovely seaside cafe along the way. This afternoon you will arrive in Vigo, a typical Galician town with a wide sandy beach. Walking along the harbour you'll arrive at your hotel for the night. Overnight Vigo.

Meals:  B,D

The route as you leave Vigo is mainly uphill. The uphill walking will reward you with specatacular views of the city and harbour. Continue walking though to Redondela where you will join the main Portuguese Camino route and then on to Arcade. Overnight Arcade.

Meals:  B,D

On today's walk you will cross a Romanesque bridge which is where Napoleon was defeated by the Spanish during the War of Independence. As you arrive into Pontevedra you will head through the narrow streets before reaching the 13th Century church of Santa Maria. Overnight Pontevedra.

Meals:  B,D

Most of this stage is through woodland and countryside along gentle river valleys with virtually no climbing. Closer to Caldas de Reis the route crosses the N550 and follows this road for short sections. Located between the Umia and Bermana rivers, the town of Caldas developed as a result of its thermal waters and continues to be a major health spa. The botanical gardens next to the river are lovely for some respite from the walk. Overnight Caldas de Reis. As of mid July the O Burgo bridge in Pontevedra is closed to pedestrian traffic, there is a temporary diversion of the Camino via the As Correntes bridge before returning to the usual route in A Santiña. The diversion is signed and local businesses and accommodation are aware, if you need to ask for directions.

Meals:  B,D

This is a beautiful walk through the Bermana river valley before dropping down into the Valga valley, one short climb. Two short stages of main road, leaving Caldas and entering Padron. The town is lovely, set on the banks of the Sar and Ulla rivers, with some St James relics to be seen at the Igrexa de Santiago (church). Overnight Padron.

Meals:  B,D

The final day takes you through pine, oak and eucalyptus wood, then approaching Santiago the route follows some sections of main road. Arrival in the historic city of Santiago. Overnight Santiago.

Meals:  B

Trip arrangements conclude after breakfast. If you'd like to stay an extra night in Santiago please ask for our rates.

Meals:  B


Inclusions

  • 11 breakfasts, 9 dinners. Breakfasts are usually continental inclusive of breads, cheese, ham, tea, coffee & juices. Dinner will consist of 3 courses, usually starting with a salad, followed by a chicken, red meat, fish or pasta dish & finishing with a dessert of fruit or cakes.
  • 11 nights in comfortable hotels on a twin share basis with ensuite facilities
  • Luggage transfer (max 1 piece of 20kgs per person)
  • Information pack including route notes, maps and guidebook per room booked
  • Emergency hotline
  • Pilgrim's Passport

  • Travel to Viana do Castelo and from Santiago de Compostela
  • Lunch and drinks throughout, dinner in Santiago and Viana do Castelo
  • Items of a personal nature
  • Transfers not advised as included
  • Tour guide – this is a self guided walking trip
  • Entrance fees
  • Travel insurance - mandatory
  • Ferry ticket on day 3

Suitability

moderate

3

Daily walks are between 13-26km (8-16.2mi) on well marked trails over diverse terrain – from relatively flat to hilly. The trail takes you along quiet rural roads, occasionally on the verges of roads with traffic. Some of the route is on walking trails away from the road and there are often alternative routes available. Route finding is reasonably straight forward following the yellow arrows and granite pillars (showing distance to Santiago), however you still need to be vigilant as markers from other trails such as the GR11 can be confusing (refer below for further details on self guided adventures). However our notes include hints and pointers to help you navigate the route. The route will inevitably cross main roads close to cities and towns, although the majority is on side roads and walking trails. The main areas to concentrate on route finding are arriving and leaving towns and cities. The accent is on keeping a steady pace to take in all of the attractions, with time to stop and take photos. You will need a good level of fitness to participate fully in this adventure.


Departure dates

Daily

Notes

DN1
Option to upgrade hotel in Caldas de Reis, and to the Parador in Santiago de Compostela - supplements apply. Must be requested at time of booking. Upgrade to Parador in Baiona, Cambados (20min from Caldas de Reis) or Pontevedra - available on request, please ask our team.
DN2
Subject to availability over the Xmas and New Year period and during local festivals.
DN3
Departures from November to February are likely to experience wetter and colder conditions than at other times. Winter can be a magical time to experience the Camino with fewer people and more local encounters, but the walking day is shorter. In addition, hotel closures are possible which may require a change in overnight towns.

Total Priceper person from

£1240GBP

Options & Supplements*
  • Upgrade supplement - Caldas de Rei - twinshare pp HBGBP£29
  • Fisterra Day Trip - 09:10 to 18:30 (operates daily from 15 Apr to 31 Oct)GBP£35
  • Upgrade supplement - Caldas de Rei - single HBGBP£43
  • excess luggage (per piece, max 20kg in weight)GBP£140
  • Single SupplementGBP£390
  • Single Traveller SurchageGBP£470
*Prices listed are per person

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Our well priced trips offer great value for money. Included in your package are comprehensive route notes, maps & guide books along with bag transfers and locally run accommodation. We take the stress out of organising your holiday.

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Caminhos de Santiago | Ways of St. James