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Duration
15 days
Activities
  • guided walk
Accommodation
  • 14 nights in 2-4 star charming hotels
Meals
  • 11 Dinners
  • 1 Lunch
  • 14 Breakfasts

Price

$5699USD

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Overview

Trip Code: CCT

Trip highlights


  • Sample local gastronomic delights including the famous 2 Michelin star Casa Marcial restaurant & 1 Michelin star restaurant A Tafona
  • Enjoy cooking demonstrations and samplings
  • Walk on the original pilgrimage route to Santiago through superb scenery
  • Explore the magnificent cities of Leon and Santiago with their impressive architecture and cathedrals.
  • Enjoying the camaraderie of fellow food enthusiasts, walkers and pilgrims
  • Experience comfortable and welcoming hotels including two paradors (former palaces)

This unique approach to a classic pilgrimage route combines a passion for good food and produce, with the incredible history of the trail crossing northern Spain. With fully supported day walks on the best sections of the pilgrimage trail paths, including the original route from Oviedo, the essence of the pilgrimage is retained. The walking is combined with cooking demonstrations and numerous samplings of the local cuisine from the heart of Spanish modern cuisine in the Basque region to the small rural villages on the Camino, as the pilgrimage is commonly called. In the company of a local gastronomic expert, there will be many insights into the local culinary scene, two Michelin Star restaurant dining experiences.

Trip Grading

introductory to moderate

More info about grading system

Traveller Rating

 

On arrival into Bilbao transfer to your hotel and check-in. At 1pm you will meet with your tour leader. Later we visit the impressive Guggenheim Museum before sitting down to our first special gourmet dinner at a men’s cooking club (sociedad gastronómica).

Meals:  D

We'll transfer from Bilbao to Pamplona to enjoy a local coffee and stroll along the Camino trail passing sites including Cafe Iruna. Lunch is at leisure in a well-known tapas district. In the afternoon we will walk from Uterga to Puente de la Reina. Passing through the village of Obanos with its strong links to the pilgrimage in the Middle Ages. After the walk we'll drive an hour to Logroño, with a short stop in Cirauqui to take in the ruins. In Logrono, our local guide will introduce you to the Camino history and recommend some of the best spots for tapas. The choice is yours as to where you wish to dine this evening. (10km/6.2mi, ±150m/492ft)

Meals:  B

The day will be spent enjoying a guided visit and wine tasting at Marqués de Riscal Winery and enjoying this special wine region before transferring by vehicle to Nájera, the former capital of La Rioja, for lunch. Our walk from Nájera to Azofra, across a classic Riojan landscape of wheat fields, sunflowers and vineyards, will build your appetite for the anticipated dinner at Echaurren Tradición, famed for its exceptional interpretation of local Rioja cuisine. Before that there will be time to explore Santo Domingo de la Calzada, visiting the impressive cathedral and well known 15th century gothic henhouse (yes there is still live poultry)! (6km/3.7mi max, ±190m/623ft)

Meals:  B,D

A short drive this morning before embarking on a walking route close to San Millan de la Cogolla. Alternatively, you can ride on the bus to visit the monasteries of Yuso (where Spanish was first written) (Baroque) and Suso (Romanesque). We will reach Burgos around midday and check into our hotel situated in an impressive 500 year old palace, before heading out for a traditional lunch at Ojeda Restaurant. After lunch stroll with your guide to the fabulous Gothic cathedral where El Cid is buried, and visit a traditional bota bag (wine skin) workshop. Dinner is at leisure, we suggest enjoying delicious tapas at the Old Quarter. (9km/5.6mi, +200m/656ft, -585m/1919ft)

Meals:  B,L

This morning we drive to Leon (2hrs) where we’ll take a fascinating guided tour of the spectacular Basilica of San Isidro and the stunning cathedral, famous for its incredible stained glass windows. Following lunch in the tapas district (not included), we take a short walk along the Camino through part of the city before a driving (2hrs) into Asturias and the town of Cangas de Onis. To Spaniards, "Asturias" means rural, green, friendly, tasty and authentic. This is the place to relax, walk, swim and sample fresh products, straight from the garden, mountain meadows or the sea. Thanks to a relatively mild and humid climate, temperatures are pleasant, even in the height of summer, and the landscape is green year round. Rural Asturias is a patchwork of walled pastures, dense forests and farming villages, bordered by a magnificent coastline to the north and steep limestone massifs to the south. A rich cultural tradition, vibrant historical towns, pre-Romanesque churches and superb regional cooking combine to make travellers feel at home instantly. Accommodation this evening is an idyllic old monastery. On clear days, from this historic building on the banks of the Sella River we see distant views of the snowy summits in the Picos de Europa. Dinner tonight is in the renowned Michelin- 2 starred restaurant run by chef Nacho Manzano, Casa Marcial, situated in the nearby tiny village of La Salgar. (2.5km/1.6mi, ±100m/328ft)

Meals:  B,D

This morning we drive to the coast to walk a picturesque section of the Camino Norte, between the towns of Ribadesella and Colunga. The views today are quite spectacular as we walk from beach to beach along the limestone cliffs. After the walk we will drive to Oviedo, the regional capital, where the original camino trail Camino Primitivo begins. Here we will have an afternoon guided tour of the historical centre. Later, dinner will be tapas-style taken at a cider bar, with an opportunity to taste this special beverage. Accommodation for the next two nights is an iconic establishment in Asturias with over 200 years of history within its walls. (13-15km/8-9mi, ±100m/328ft)

Meals:  B,D

Oviedo is a beautiful city, boasting Gothic Cathedrals as well as pre Romanesque UNESCO World Heritage listed monuments. You can choose to spend the day exploring the sights or walk on the Camino Primitivo, the original pilgrims’ route to Santiago. Jacobean copper shells will lead walkers through narrow lanes and busier avenues, and out into the green Asturian countryside. Tarmac lanes and old footpaths will take us between quiet villages, some of which still have pilgrim hostals and historic inns, to Premoñu. A transfer will take us back to our hotel. Own dinner arrangements. (17km/10.5mi, +200m/656ft, - 300m/984ft)

Meals:  B

This morning we transfer to Salas and visit a small museum with pre-Romanesque art in the Valdes Palace, then pick up lunch supplies, before continuing to the start of our walk at El Pedregal. The trail takes us through beautiful countryside to reach the abandoned monastery of Obona, which was an important school and retreat for scholars in the Middle Ages. We'll take a break mid walk to try some freshly baked Asturian empanadas from a small local bakery that still uses a woodfired oven. From here we have a short transfer (30minutes) to Corias, where we settle in at our comfortable accommodation, the historic newly renovated monastery Parador de Corias, (16km/10mi, +350m/1148ft, -250m/820ft)

Meals:  B,D

From Corios we drive to La Mortera, from where we have challenging ascent along one of the most famous stretches of the Camino. Our walk will take us along sections of the original high "ruta de los hospitales" and crosses steep slopes toward Puerto el Palo. Due to extreme winter weather, several pilgrims' hospitals were built on either side of this challenging mountain pass. Superb views will reward our walking efforts. If the weather is not clear we'll take the lower route, which passes tiny valley villages. This evening, regional specialities at the renowned Nueva Allandesa. We will stay overnight in Lake Granadas. (13km/8.3mi, +600m/1968ft, -150m/492ft, 4.5 or 5hrs)

Meals:  B,D

This morning we shop for picnic supplies in Grandas before setting out. The ancient Camino has been almost entirely surfaced between Grandas and Fonsagrada, so we avoid this section by driving (45mins) into Galicia to continue from Paradanova. We’ll walk an ancient section of the pilgrims’ trail, across high green pastures and fields of heather to reach Póboa de Burón, a small village formerly of monumental importance. Our walking day ends in Paradavella before we transfer to our welcoming rural accommodation near Castroverde, where we stay for two nights. (12.3km/7.6mi, +450m/1476ft, -675m/2215ft)

Meals:  B,D

Today is a free day with several options: you can walk the Camino, rest at the accommodation or walk into Castroverde. A morning transfer to Paradavella is available for those who are walking the Camino, and the route follows rural tracks through woodlands, with some short sections on the main road. Afternoon transfer from O Cádavo back to our casa rural. After dinner, we’ll be treated to a unique tradition: the “queimada”, a ritual followed in preparing this tasty beverage of coffee infused with liqueur (the Galician speciality called “orujo”, an eau-de-vie distilled from grape skins after they’re crushed to make wine). Overnight Castroverde. (9km/5.6mi, +300m/984ft, -250m/820ft)

Meals:  B,D

Our last day of walking is a delight, as we enjoy the pastoral Galician countryside following quiet tarmac lanes and rural tracks from one hamlet to the next. Beautiful examples of traditional architecture such as the well-preserved 'pazos' and 'casas grandes', impressive buildings in stone and wood often turned into modern-day hotels. From Góndar we drive into Lugo, where the Camino Primitivo blends with the French Route. We'll stop here for the night to enjoy its impressive Roman Walls and outstanding tapas bars. This evening we’ll enjoy a stroll on Lugo’s Roman walls, then meet our local expert to explore the city’s pleasant town centre. We’ll learn about regional wines and classic Galician cooking from our expert guide and a local restauranteur. Dinner will be at a pulpería where they prepare the traditional dish “pulpo a feira” (Galician-style octopus) among other delicacies. (17.5km/11mi, +200m/656ft, -400m/1312ft)

Meals:  B,D

A treat for the senses today, with wine tasting in the Ribeira Sacra region. We'll have a short stop in the lovely town of Portomarin before continuing to our winery visit. Here we'll have a guided tour and tastings (3 wines). We will also visit a small family-run, award winning dairy before having lunch in or around Lalin. Later we drive to our lovely pazo in the country, on the Camino Sanabres (Via de la Plata) not far from Santiago de Compostela, which gives us easy access to the city tomorrow morning.

Meals:  B,D

Time and weather permitting, today we walk from Lavacolla or Monte do Gozo, joining other joyful pilgrims as we approach St James Cathedral. On arrival in Santiago there's free time to explore the city, then we'll meet for a scrumptious farewell dinner at one of Santiago’s highly-acclaimed restaurants serving cutting edge innovative cuisine based on traditional products. The perfect way to complete the tour. (8km/5mi, +300m/984ft, 2hrs)

Meals:  B,D

Farewell your fellow travellers as the trip concludes after breakfast. We recommend staying an extra day in Santiago as there are many things to do in this fabulous city. You can also add the Fisterra day trip (supplement applies, see trip code FDT).

Meals:  B


Map

Elevation

The map and elevation chart are for illustrative purposes only and meant to provide general guidelines.


Inclusions

  • Tour escort throughout and local gastronomic experts at points through the trip
  • Accommodation at carefully selected hotels (twin share basis) including all breakfasts (continental style)
  • 4 very special gourmet dinners (wine not included): Men’s cooking club in Bilbao (day 1), Restaurant Echaurren Tradición (day 3), Casa Marcial in Arriondas (day 5) and A Tafona in Santiago de Compostela (day 14)
  • 4 authentic meals featuring regional cuisine: lunch: Roasted lamb Castilian style at Ojeda Restaurant Burgos (day 4), dinners: Tapas Asturian style at an authentic cider house in Oviedo (day 6), Creative cooking with ancestral recipes at Hotel Grandas in Grandas de Salime (day 9) and classic Galician cooking (day 12)
  • 4 dinners featuring home cooking (3 course set menu served at your accommodation) in: Corias (day 8), near Castroverde (day 10 & 11) and Andeade (day 13)
  • 9 guided visits: Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao (day 1), Logrono (day 2), Marqués de Riscal Winery (day 3), Bota bag workshop (day 4), Cathedral and Panteón in León (day 5), Oviedo Historical Centre (day 6), Lugo (day 12), Dairy (day 13), and Winery in the Ribeira Sacra (day 13)
  • 2 wine tasting sessions: Marqués de Riscal (day 3) and Ribeira Sacra (day 13)
  • Guided or self guided walks as per the program
  • All transfers according to program

  • Travel to Bilbao and from Santiago de Compostela
  • Lunches except on day 4, dinners not noted as included and drinks (except house wine on many nights)
  • Dinner on days 2, 7 and 15
  • No drinks are included at the Casa Marcial in Arriondas (dinner on day 5) - a 2 Michelin star restaurant - wine pairing costs EUR45 pp (subject to change), however good wines at reasonable prices are available by the bottle - allow EUR20pp
  • Travel Insurance
  • Items of a personal nature
  • Arrival and departure transfers - available on request (supplement applies)
  • Storage of luggage
  • Tips - allow EUR 2-5 per evening meal, EUR50-80 for the guide and EUR40-50 for the driver.

Accommodation


Grading

introductory to moderate  

INTRODUCTORY TO MODERATE – GRADE 2 This is a leisurely paced guided walk with average daily stages of 3.5 to 7 hours. The trip is graded introductory to moderate as it is mainly on well defined trails, with a few off path sections only. There are many ups and downs and walking poles are definitely a good idea. A reasonable level of fitness is required to complete all the walks. As with all of our trips it is important that you are well prepared. We suggest that you undertake regular exercise – swimming, cycling, and jogging, two to three times a week for three months prior to your departure. As the trip is fully supported there is the option to skip some of the walks and ride with the support vehicle.


Departure dates


Notes

DN1
Prices valid for 2022 departures only

Want to organise a private group?

Fundraising events, sporting groups, family treats; learn how you can organise a Private Group from just 6 travellers.

Total Priceper person from

$5699USD

Options & Supplements*
  • Single SupplementUSD$760
*Prices listed are per person

Trip reviews


Why travel with us

Making Europe Affordable

We offer different levels of accommodation and comfort so that even the most budget conscious can treat themselves to active holidays on Europe's most celebrated tracks and trails. Our trips are great value for money because you only pay for what you want.  

Self-Guided Specialists

Our wide range of self-guided itineraries embody the UTracks philosophy of exploring Europe your way. We handle the logistics so all that's left for you to do is enjoy exploring Europe at your own pace. Most depart daily with a minimum of two people, meaning maximum flexibility.

Our Wide Range

With close to 400 trips in almost 50 countries, including the largest range of bike & boat holidays in Europe, we're confident that we can organise an Alps walk, Camino de Santiago or Via Francigena experience, Food Lovers' trip or a tour in a lesser-known pocket of Europe that you will love. 

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