24 Trips to Explore in 2024See the List
Duration
10 days
Activities
  • self guided walk
Accommodation
  • 9 nights in a combination of charming hotels and Paradors
Meals
  • 8 Dinners
  • 9 Breakfasts

Price

$2190USD

 
 

Overview

Trip Code: CPI

Trip highlights


  • Experiencing the historical significance of the pilgrim trail, one of the world's great walking experiences
  • Staying in charming hotels, manor houses and paradors for maximum comfort
  • Reaching the fabled Santiago de Compostela cathedral on foot
  • Enjoying the camaraderie of hikers and pilgrims along the trail

Following the well worn Camino trail in northern Spain is one of the world's great walking experiences. This trip provides the perfect option for those who want to experience the trail and stay in a mix of charming hotels and Paradors along the way, often in historic buildings updated inside for maximum comfort. As you are walking more than 100kms, you are eligible to receive the official Compostela certificate. Along the walk, gain a wonderful appreciation of the historic significance of the trail while reflecting on the meditative role that walking offers the pilgrim. Passing through mixed landscapes, there are numerous reminders of the pilgrims past who travelled the route including crosses, statues and grain silos. The gates of Galicia lead on to the fabled Santiago de Compostela with its famous cathedral, site of the tomb of St James.

Trip Grading

moderate

More info about grading system

Traveller Rating

 

Make your way to Villafranca del Bierzo and check into the Parador for 2 nights. The Parador has great views of the northwest of the region of El Bierzo and the south of the Ancares mountain range. The town has a rich monumental heritage and its old centre has been declared Property of Cultural Interest.

Meals:  D

This morning you will be transferred to Herrerías to start your Camino. You will walk via La Faba to Laguna de Castilla, where you will find a wonderful example of a functional Galician 'palloza'. This traditional structure has stone walls with a conical, slanting roof and is a typical dwelling of this region. Continue through the scrub land to reach O Cebreiro (at 1330m) where you will meet your 4pm transfer to take you back to Villafranca for your overnight stay. Distance 8km/5mi

Meals:  B,D

Transfer back to O Cebreiro to start your walk. Early morning mists give way to ethereal hilltops that look like floating islands and along the way you will encounter amazing views in every direction. In Hospital de la Condesa take the time to visit the Iglesia San Juan with its unusual stone roofed belfry and the cross of Santiago. Pass through the village of Triacastela on your way to Samos for your late afternoon transfer to Monforte de Lemos. Distance 30km/18.6mi Optional excursion: You have the option to add a day to the trip and take a tour of the Ribeira Sacra including wine tasting lunch, cellar visit, catamaran journey on the river and vineyard experience. This is a full day excursion. It must be requested at the time of booking and the excursion supplement plus an extra night in Monforte apply.

Meals:  B,D

An 8.30am transfer will take you back to Samos to commence your walk. Samos has as its centrepiece an enormous monastery founded in the sixth century, The Monastery of St Julian, an active Benedictine monastery. From here you will pass through Sarria and on to Barbadelo, following a winding path between the river and railway to cross a stream. Climb up through ancient woodlands to meet your 4pm transfer back to Monforte. Distance 17.5km/10.8mi

Meals:  B,D

Transfer to Barbadelo this morning to continue your walk. You are now experiencing rural Galicia at its best following a well-worn path along granite stepping stones and narrow laneways to stay above the flood prone area below. Gently climb to Ferreiros and Vilacha before descending steeply to the bridge spanning the Miño river. Overnight in Portomarin. Distance 16.5km/10.2mi

Meals:  B,D

Today you will find varied terrain on your journey to Palas de Rei. You will commence with a climb up a woodland path to then make numerous crossings over the main road. If you have time, take an optional detour from Portos to Vilar de Donas where you will find the Church of San Salvador, constructed in the middle of the 12 century. After another gentle climb around the side of Rosary Heights you will descend to Palas de Rei. Afternoon transfer to Vilamaior Distance 25km/15.5mi

Meals:  B,D

Return to Palas de Rei to commence todays walk. The terrain becomes easier today as you walk through the villages of Casanova and Leboreiro past eucalyptus trees. There are many places along the way to stop for coffee and lunch. Crossing over the River Seco on the Magdalena Bridge you will reach Furelos and Melide. Continue to your comfortable lodging in Arzua in the province of La Coruña. Distance 29.5km/18.3mi

Meals:  B,D

Today’s walk will bring you to the small town of Rua which has a population of only 50 people. The walk is lovely, passing large green fields and rural landscapes. Meet your transfer at 4pm to take you to your overnight accommodation. Distance 18km/11.2mi

Meals:  B,D

You are transferred back to Rua at 9am this morning to commence your walk. Today you will pass many ancient sites including monuments, chapels and bridges – all have a story to tell. Follow country lanes and forest paths through increasingly populated countryside. The last day on the trail is always a special one. Walk into the city - the Parador is adjacent to the cathedral. Arriving in the fabled Santiago de Compostela, there is plenty to see and do – or you can simply relax and celebrate the end of the journey. Dinner is not included tonight so you can try one of the many restaurants in town. Distance 20km/12.4mi

Meals:  B

Trip arrangements conclude after breakfast

Meals:  B


Map

Elevation

The map and elevation chart are for illustrative purposes only and meant to provide general guidelines.
On self guided trips, actual route information provided before departure will be more detailed.


Inclusions

  • 9 breakfasts, 8 dinners (no dinner in Santiago): 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 chicken, red meat, fish or a pasta dish & finishing with a dessert of fruit or cakes.
  • 9 nights in Parador, manor houses and charming hotels on a twinshare basis
  • Luggage Transfer, 1 piece maximum 20kg, supplement applies for excess
  • Transfers on days 2 - 9
  • Digital information pack including navigational app with route notes, maps & GPX
  • Pilgrim Passport
  • Visitor tax
  • Emergency Hotline

  • Travel to Villafranca del Bierzo and from Santiago
  • Meals not listed as included, drinks
  • Travel insurance
  • Entrance fees
  • Guide - this is a self guided tour
  • A supplement will apply if you are travelling solo or book a single room
  • Transfers not listed as included
  • Excess luggage
  • Items of a personal nature
  • An optional full day excursion in Ribeira Sacra is available at Monforte (where you stay on days 3 & 4) - must be requested at time of booking and an extra night in Monforte is required. Note does not operate on a Wednesday. Details of the day trip: 11.30am Pick up from your hotel, transfer to Ribeira Sacra for a cellar visit and wine tasting followed by a 3-course lunch with drinks included, then a boat trip on the Sil river. Transfer back to the hotel in the early evening (5pm). Inclusions: Private transport (Mercedes type), guided activities only in the wine cellar and during the boat trip. Minimum of 2 people. A supplement applies for the tour plus the extra night at Monforte - please ask our consultants for details.

Accommodation


Grading

moderate  

The walking is graded moderate (3). Daily walks are between 8 and 30km on well marked trails over diverse terrain – from relatively flat to mountainous. This is a well worn path where route finding will be reasonably straight forward (refer below for further details on self guided adventures). 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 from 1 Mar to 15 Nov

Notes

Note:
Departures in November are likely to experience wetter and colder conditions than at other times with snow possible. 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, towns are quieter with some shops and restaurants closed, and hotel closures are possible which may require a change in overnight towns.

Want to organise a private group?

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

Priceper person from

$2190USD

Options & Supplements*
  • Fisterra Day Trip ex Santiago - departs daily from 14 April to 31 OctoberUSD$70
  • Optional Ribeira Sacra excursion daily except Wednesdays (pp, min 2, max 4) - plus extra night MonforteUSD$170
  • Single SupplementUSD$580
  • Solo Traveller SupplementUSD$1060
*Prices listed are per person

Frequently Asked Questions

The walking is graded moderate (3). Daily walks are between 14 and 24km on well marked trails over diverse terrain – from relatively flat to mountainous. This is a well worn path where route finding will be reasonably straight forward (refer below for further details on self guided adventures). 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.

In order to secure your place on the trip we recommend you book as soon as you are ready. Bookings open for the following year in mid September.

The closest airport is Santiago de Compostela, from the airport you need to take a bus to Sarria (with one change). Some people prefer not to fly into Santiago de Compostela and instead choose to fly into Madrid. From Madrid you can take the train to Sarria, the journey takes approximately 6 hours.

We are able to cater for gluten free diets, however at times, choices are limited. Breakfasts served at the hotels are generally continental style and we suggest bringing your own gluten free breads or cereals. We also recommend bringing your own snacks. Generally in Europe it is quite easy to purchase gluten free foods from supermarkets and shops, but can be harder in restaurants.

This trip can be booked from 1 February to 15 November. The summer months tend to be busy months on the Camino Trail and the weather can be quite hot. In our experience starting the trip in late April or May, or from September to early October, is the best time to travel. The trail is less busy and the weather is cooler. Galicia experiences rain year round.

The Pilgrim's Passport or 'Credencial' is included on this trip and you will receive one locally. The Pilgrim's Passport makes a great souvenir and way to track your walk. You can ask to have your Pilgrim's Passport stamped at churches, your hotels and many other places along the route.

The Compostela is a certificate of completion of the Camino de Santiago and you must walk at least the last 100km into Santiago to receive it. This trip starts in Sarria which is 110km from Santiago, so you will be able to receive your Compostela at the end of the walk. To show that you have walked the last 100km you will need to have at least 2 stamps per day in your Pilgrim's Passport.

The Camino Trail is exceptionally well waymarked, with yellow arrows and markers used frequently throughout the route. It is nearly impossible to get lost on this walk.

It is possible to book an extra night at any of the hotels we use which would allow you to have a rest day. However, this does need to be advised at the time of booking.


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. 

Videos

Walking the Camino de Santiago with UTracks
Join Newsletter
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/ADS.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Adventures South"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Adventure South</div>
Adventure South NZ is unrivalled in their geographic coverage, originality and overall quality of adventures holidays in New Zealand. Choose from walking, cycling, winter or multi-activity holidays, on either the North or South Island.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/AWH.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Australian Walking Holidays"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Australian Walking Holidays</div>
Australian Walking Holidays specialises in small group guided walking adventures. Since 1982 we have been guiding small groups of travellers on Australia's finest walks across our tropical, coastal or red centre landscapes.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/GCT.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Great Canadian Trails"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Great Canadian Trails</div>
Great Canadian Trails specialises in active holidays in Canada. With both guided and supported self-guided options available, our unique itineraries draw upon some of Canada's most inspiring parks, trails and landscapes from coast to coast.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/HUM.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Humac Challenge"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Huma Charity Challenge</div>
Huma enables those with adventurous spirits to challenge themselves and make a difference for a cause close to their heart. Travel, fundraise and meet life-long friends on one of Huma's meaningful and unique challenges around the world.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/WB.jpg?v2' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Walkers’ Britain"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Walkers' Britain</div>
Walkers' Britain (formerly Sherpa Expeditions) have specialised in walking and cycling trips in the United Kingdom and Europe since 1973. Explore iconic trails and destinations on a self guided or small group active holiday with Walkers' Britain.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/WB.jpg?v2' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Walkers’ Britain"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Walkers' Britain</div>
Walkers' Britain (formerly Sherpa Expeditions) have specialised in walking and cycling trips in the United Kingdom and Europe since 1973. Explore iconic trails and destinations on a self guided or small group active holiday with Walkers' Britain.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/TAS.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Tasmania Expeditions"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Tasmanian Expeditions</div>
Tasmanian Expeditions is the most experienced operator of treks and adventure travel holidays in Tasmania. We own and operate the most comprehensive range of adventure holidays available across Tasmania's varied landscapes.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/UTX-new.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Utracks"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>UTracks</div>
UTracks are the active European holiday specialists. Whether you prefer cycling or walking, 2-star or 4-star, small groups or self guided, land, river or sea – UTracks can help you to explore Europe exactly the way you want.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/WYA.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="World Expeditions Schools"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>World Expeditions Schools</div>
World Expeditions Schools is our specialist division dedicated to organising tailor made overseas school group adventures. Specialists in Service Learning projects, choose from more destinations than any other school group provider.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/YOM.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Yomads"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Yomads</div>
Yomads offers adventures for the 20s and 30s on six continents. Designed as a way to bring young and likeminded travellers together, Yomads caters to those interested in lightly structured and active trips that allow freedom to roam and explore.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/ACT.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Australian Cycle Tours"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Australian Cycle Tours</div>
Australian Cycle Tours specialises in high quality self guided and guided cycling experiences in a selection of the most beautiful regions in Australia.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/WEX.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="World Expeditions"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>World Expeditions</div>
The pioneers of original, worldwide adventure travel holidays since 1975
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/TJX.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Trail Journeys"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Trail Journeys</div>
Self-guided cycling experts on New Zealand's Otago Rail Trail and more
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/BMAC.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Blue Mountains Adventure Company"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Blue Mountains Adventure Company</div>
The original Blue Mountains canyoning, hiking, climbing and abseiling experts
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/GWNZ.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Great Walks of New Zealand"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Great Walks of New Zealand</div>
Explore New Zealand's most spectacular wilderness regions with the self-guided hiking experts
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/NAA.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="North America Active"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>North America Active</div>
USA Canada hiking & cycling tour specialists, choose from self-guided or guided trips