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9 days
  • self guided walk
  • 8 nights in a mix of 3 star city and comfortable rural hotels and village pensions
  • 5 Dinners
  • 8 Breakfasts





Trip Code: UPV

Trip highlights

  • Walking sections of the original route to Santiago de Compostela
  • Enjoying the camaraderie of fellow hikers and pilgrims
  • Visiting the fabulous cities and towns of Lugo, Tineo and Oviedo with their wealth of religious and historic treasures
  • Staying at comfortable city and cosy rural hotels and enjoying delicious local dishes

The pilgrim's trail to Santiago de Compostela is one of the great historical 'long distance footpaths' through Europe. According to legend, it all began in the 9th century when the bones of the apostle St James, beheaded in Palestine, miraculously appeared in a village in what is now Galicia. Word spread around the Christian world, reaching (among others) King Alfonso II of Asturias. He undertook the pilgrimage, travelling through dark woods and daunting mountains, from Oviedo to Lugo to Santiago and invited fellow kings and noblemen to follow in his footsteps. The 'original' route became very popular in the early Middle Ages when areas south of the Cantabrian mountains were continuously at war. Walked by millions of 'peregrinos' over the centuries, this self-guided walk reveals the beautiful natural settings, captivating historical monuments, gorgeous rural farmland and authentically friendly villages of northern Spain. Near Lugo, the 'Camino Primitivo' joins the more popular French route.

Trip Grading


More info about grading system

Make your own way to Oviedo, capital of Asturias. If you arrive early in the afternoon, make sure you visit the Gothic Cathedral devoted to San Salvador, the historic holy site where the Camino begins. This evening you can enjoy the city’s lively atmosphere and explore the charming lanes in the old town and traditional cider houses around the corner from your comfortable hotel.

Meals:  Nil

Setting out from the cathedral, you'll follow the brass Camino shells through the city centre and out into the green Asturian countryside. Quiet lanes and ancient footpaths take you past peaceful villages, some with historic pilgrims’ hostels and inns. From Puerma you will follow the main road to Grado. From Grado a short transfer will take you to your charming rural hotel. Overnight in Sama de Grado. Walking: 6.5-7hrs, 250m/820ft ascent, 375m/1230ft descent.

Meals:  B,D

Today starts with a transfer to La Espina, to avoid the most recent “Camino” - a new motorway! There will be a short section walking on tarmac before you move into more serene landscapes on the way to Tineo, the capital of dairy production in Asturias. Overnight in Tineo, where our usual hotel has an indoor pool and spa. Own arrangements for dinner tonight. Walking: 4hrs, 240m/787ft ascent, 240m/787ft descent

Meals:  B

From Tineo you will traverse forested terrain to reach the monastery at Obona, the region’s first School of Latin and a retreat for scholars in the Middle Ages. You then follow woodland tracks and quiet tarmac lanes to reach the village of Campiello and your overnight accommodation. Walking: 5hrs, 300m/984ft ascent, 340m/1115ft descent

Meals:  B,D

Transfer in the morning to La Mortera, where your walk begins with a tough ascent on the High Route - “la Ruta de los Hospitales” - traversing steep slopes on barren mountainsides to reach the pass at Puerto del Palo. This section has always been one of the most treacherous, due to extreme winter weather, and you’ll see ruins of centuries-old pilgrims’ hospitals on either side of the pass. Enjoy superb views from the top before the last section, on tarmac, leads to your hotel. Overnight in Berducedo. Walking: 8.5hrs, 520m/1706ft ascent, 450m/1476ft descent. The lower route recommended in case of weather: transfer to Pola Allande to start walking - arrangements to be made locally. Walking: 7hrs, 18km/11.25mi It's also possible to arrange your pickup at El Palo and transfer on the last section, also to be arranged locally.

Meals:  B,D

From Berducedo, the route makes a slight detour to skirt a modern-day reservoir which effectively 'erased' the historic Camino in the mid-20th century. Follow a steep path down through lovely woodlands, then cross the dam to reach your charming hotel overlooking the water. Overnight in Grandas de Salime. Walking: 6.5hrs, 330m/1083ft ascent, 970m/3182ft descent

Meals:  B,D

Today starts with a 30 minute transfer to avoid a long section on tarmac and on the drive you leave Asturias and enter Galicia. Your walk begins in Fonsagrada or the nearby village of A Proba de Burón. This is one of the most ancient sections of the Camino Primitivo, among green meadows and fields, past the ruins of the historic pilgrims’ hospital at Montouto. Your walk ends in Paradavella where you'll transfer to your charming lodgings near Castroverde. Walking: 4.5hrs, 400m/1312ft ascent, 650m/2132ft descent

Meals:  B,D

A morning transfer takes you into Castroverde, then today's walk is a celebration of quintessential Galician countryside. Walking along quiet country lanes and farming tracks from one hamlet to the next, you'll pass well preserved traditional architecture, from stone barns to historic “pazos”. If you don't fancy walking so much, your hosts can drive you beyond Castroverde, to shorten the stage. Your comfortable hotel is located in Lugo’s historic town centre, just 100m from its splendid Roman walls, a UNESCO World heritage site. Walking: 4.5-5hrs, 200m/656ft ascent, 400m/1312ft descent

Meals:  B

Trip concludes in Lugo after breakfast.

Meals:  B


  • 8 breakfasts, 5 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 chicken, red meat, fish or a pasta dish & finishing with a dessert of fruit or cakes.
  • 8 nights in a combination of quality hotels, farmhouse B&Bs and guesthouses on a twin share basis generally with ensuite facilities
  • Transfers as described (days 2, 3, 5, 7 and 8)
  • Digital information pack including smartphone app with maps and guidebook per room booked
  • Luggage Transfer, 1 piece maximum 20kg, supplement applies for excess
  • Visitor tax
  • Emergency hotline

  • Travel to Oviedo and from Lugo
  • Meals not listed as included, drinks
  • Travel insurance - mandatory
  • Guide – this is a self-guided walking holiday
  • A supplement will apply if you are travelling solo or book a single room
  • Entrance fees not listed as included
  • Transfers not listed as included
  • Transfers by taxi or public transport if you need to skip a stage
  • Excess Luggage
  • Items of a personal nature



The walking is graded moderate (3). Daily walks are between 11 and 24km on well marked trails over diverse terrain – from relatively flat to mountainous. Daily ascents are between 200-800m. The trip is graded 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 good level of fitness is required. 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.

Departure dates

Daily from 1 Apr to 25 Oct


High Season
High season is from 1 to 31 Aug, supplement applies
This trip can be combined with our "Sarria to Santiago" walk (trip code CT6)
This tour will NOT entitle you to the Compostelana, as the official pilgrimage certificate requires completion of the last 100km on foot (or 200km by bike) into Santiago. If you are intent on getting the certificate, you can extend this trip with a 4-day walk from Lugo to Santiago (no taxi transfers). Your luggage will be transferred while you walk from hotel to hotel, getting your pilgrims’ passport stamped regularly. Please ask our consultants for details.

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


Options & Supplements*
  • Single supplementUSD$600
  • Solo traveller supplementUSD$710
*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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