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Duration
36 days
Activities
  • self guided walk
Accommodation
  • 35 nights in 2-3 star hotels, farmhouse B&Bs and guesthouses
Meals
  • 33 Dinners
  • 35 Breakfasts

Price

SPECIAL OFFER

$4490USD

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We've initiated extra cleaning and hygiene protocols on all trips

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Social distancing comes naturally when exploring Europe’s countryside

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Overview

Trip Code: SC1

Trip highlights


  • Walk through stunning scenery, visiting mountain villages
  • Experience the history of the trail marked by crosses, statues and grain silos
  • Enjoying the camaraderie of fellow hikers and pilgrims
  • Arrival into Santiago and experience the satisfaction of reaching the end of the ‘Camino’

Traverse the centuries of time as well as Northern Spain on the medieval Camino de Santiago pilgrim trail. This trip offers a chance to walk the entire length of the Spanish Camino, from St Jean Pied de Port in France, across the Pyrenees and onwards to Santiago. The entire trip can be done over a month, or you can break it down further as this itinerary comprises of our separate self guided walks along the Camino in the Pyrenees, to Logroño, Burgos, Leon and Santiago de Compostela. The fascinating route will bring to life the unique history that you'll discover along this famous pilgrimage trail. Known as 'The Way of St James' in France, the Camino de Santiago winds its way across borders, following in the footsteps of thousands of medieval pilgrims through the beautiful Sierras of Navarre and Aragon. The route passes a multitude of churches and monasteries that mark the Compostela Trail, resembling a travelling museum of Romanesque art.

Trip Grading

moderate

More info about grading system

Traveller Rating

 

Make your own way to Saint-Jean-Pied-de-Port, the capital of the Basse-Navarre and the Pays de Aze. It is also one of the three remaining French provinces of the old Kingdom of Navarre. There is time in the afternoon to take a stroll along the cobbled streets and up to the town lookout. You can also explore the many arts and craft shops. We recommend that you purchase supplies for lunch tomorrow as you will only pass one café/bar on the route. You should also collect your pilgrims stamp from the Pilgrim Office or the Tourist Office.

Meals:  D

The Camino begins with crossing the old roman bridge over the River Nive. Today is quite impressive as you climb towards the Franco-Spanish border. The first section you will be hiking through pastoral lands with impressive views of the Pyrenees. You will cross three cols today, and this is quite an exposed stage so remember your hats, sunscreen and water. Arrive in Roncesvalles with its historic monastery, or continue to Burguete (dependent on availability). An optional return transfer is available if you're booked at Burguete - please ask for our rates. We recommend an early start as today is quite long.

Meals:  B,D

The trail crosses undulating green hills and passes through typical Basque country villages. These villages are quite small surrounded by cultivated fields, animal barns and meadows. You will walk through lovely wooded areas consisting of beech, oak, maple, hazel and holly trees. Continue to Zubiri or, dependent on availability, further along the trail through the town of Larrasoana to Akerreta.

Meals:  B,D

The walk consists of a few ups and downs however there is a shorter distance to cover. Pass through Zuriain then up the side of Mount Narval to reach the Santa Marina Hermitage in Arleta. From the old town of Buriin, a village that disappeared in the 14th Century, there is a steep descent into Villave. The route then connects to Burlada and leads you to the final climb into Pamplona – a wonderful walk into this truly historic city. Dinner is not included tonight so you are free to sample the local pinxtos (tapas).

Meals:  B

Leaving Pamplona you make your way to the Jacobite city of Puente la Reina, a city of museums. From the main square you will be able to see the Camino signs to navigate your way out of the city. The route takes you from the old town to walk through parks in the modern part of the city before the landscape opens out. You can take a short detour that will allow you to view the octagonal chapel of Eucate, one of the Roman jewels of the trail of Aragon. A steep climb passing the wind farms of Zariquiegui takes you out of the Pamplona basin. You will then descend to your hotel in Puente la Reina.

Meals:  B,D

On this stage you will walk through the countryside with olive, almond and oak trees. The route follows the banks for the Agra River where you can see the township of Bargota which was inhabited until the 11th Century by the mission of the Orden del Temple and later, the Hospital of St John. From here you follow a sheltered path to Maneur through an agricultural landscape of crop fields, vineyards and wooded areas before arriving in Estella.

Meals:  B,D

This short stage allows a detour to discover the imposing Irache Monastery and its ‘wine fountain’ – choose to fill your water bottles with either wine or water! Today’s walk is mainly through open fields, you will not pass through any villages reaching Los Arcos early in the afternoon. This is a very small town with a couple of cafes/bars.

Meals:  B,D

Your day's walk passes many places of historic interest as you walk from Navarre to the well-known wine centre of Rioja. Not far into the walk you will reach the village of Sansol where you can stop to buy some refreshments or lunch before crossing the San Pedro River and continuing through farmlands and onto Logroño. You will walk around the town before descending to the stone bridge which leads the way into Logroño. Make your own way to the hotel in Logroño, in the centre of the Rioja wine region. It is a beautiful city with a lively tapas district.

Meals:  B,D

Today you will start your walk on the historic Rúa Vieja road out of Logroño, and walk through the park of La Grajera to the village of Naverrete and the ruins of the 12th century San Juan de Acre pilgrim hospital. The route then takes you via the Monte de San Antón to Nájera.

Meals:  B,D

From the Monastery of Santa Maria la Real, the trail continues to the hilltop town of Azofra, in the centre of the Cañas valley. After this it is an easy walk to the historic town of Santo Domingo de la Calzada, where you will learn about the legend of the rooster and the hen.

Meals:  B,D

This stage of the walk is on fairly flat terrain. Grañón, Redecilla del Camino and Castildelgado are just a few of the villages you will find along the way to Belorado.

Meals:  B,D

Today's walk is long and requires a considerable ascent to the Montes de Oca, but once there you will enjoy unbeatable views. Walk to either San Juan de Ortega (where you will overnight) or further along the trail to Atapuerca (where you will be transferred to your accommodation in Burgos).

Meals:  B,D

From San Juan de Ortega or Atapuerca you will pass through a series of villages to reach Burgos, with its impressive Gothic cathedral and the Monastery of Las Huelgas. Your accommodation is in a central hotel just a stone's throw from Burgos' many attractions. (*If you walked to Atapuerca yesterday, your day will start with a return transfer from the hotel in Burgos back to Atapuerca where you continue walking).

Meals:  B,D

The next stage of the Camino takes you from Burgos to the rural Meseta landscape through fields of wheat, barley and oats to Hornillos. In the afternoon, a short 2km transfer (included) will take you to your overnight accommodation in Isar, or alternatively you can walk to Isar.

Meals:  B,D

A morning transfer (included) will take you back to Hornillos, where you continue your Camino. Today the walk leads you through wheat fields as far as Hontanas. On the way, you will pass the Convent of San Antón. Just under 5km along a flat stretch will see you arriving at the pretty village of Castrojeriz.

Meals:  B,D

Once you leave Castrojeriz, the path leads you uphill to the Alto de Mostelares, from where you will descend towards the river Piserga. The last part of today's walk is along the Canal de Castilla into the historic town of Frómista.

Meals:  B,D

The first part of this stage will lead you towards Villalcázar de Sirga and its beautiful 13th century church. Shortly afterwards you will reach Carrión de los Condes and its impressive collection of monuments.

Meals:  B,D

This stage is short, so you can make the most of your time in Carrion de los Condes before starting your walk to the small village of Calzadilla de la Cueza.

Meals:  B,D

From Calzadilla de la Cueza the first couple of kilometres are uphill. You will then walk through Lédigos, Terradillo de Templarios and Moratinos, before arriving at one of this journey's most interesting villages, Sahagún.

Meals:  B,D

You will leave Sahagún by crossing the bridge over the river Cea. Once you arrive at Calzada del Coto, the Camino divides into two paths. Follow the path to the left through Bercianos del Camino to reach El Burgo Ranero (just off the main route). At 3pm you transfer back to Sahagún for overnight accommodation.

Meals:  B,D

At 8:30am you have a transfer back to El Burgo Ranero. This stage leads you to Mansilla de las Mulas, not far from León. You will come across very few villages on today's walk. Mansilla is where the two branches of the walk reunite.

Meals:  B,D

Cross the bridge over the river Esla to leave Mansilla, and then the river Porma in Villarente. From the Alto del Portillo you will enjoy great views over the city of León, dominated by its cathedral. A short and steep descent will lead you into the city centre. Leon is one of the most historic towns of Old Castile, a large province bordered by Galicia, Asturias, Palencia and Zamora. There is evidence of Roman occupation as well as the Moors; however it was the knights of Templar who built the castles and fortifications in the middle Ages. Ensure you take the time to visit the old city. One of Leon’s glories is without doubt the Cathedral. Constructed from the 13th Century for a period of 200 years the Collegiate Church of San Isidoro houses an impressive collection of early manuscripts. The Town Walls are of Roman and medieval construction. Overnight Leon.

Meals:  B,D

Leaving Leon, the route will take you right through town until you reach Virgen del Camino, where legend states that the Virgin appeared in front of a shepherd in 1506, and asked him to build a shrine. This section will be quite exposed as you cross the Paramo (desert). Ensure that you carry plenty of water and use sun protection. You will pass through some small villages so you will be able to pick refreshments up along the way before arriving in the village of Villadangos del Paramo. This town of Roman origin was the site of a battle that took place between the Queen Dona Urraca of Leon and her husband, Alfonso I of Aragon in the year 1111. Take a quiet walk around the streets and visit the Parish Church which contains an image of the Apostle Santiago from the 18th Century. Note: you may choose to shorten the walk today by 9km by taking a bus from Plaza Santo Domingo to Virgen del Camino. Buses leave every 30minutes and the fare is around €1.

Meals:  B,D

The countryside becomes more agreeable as you make your way to Puente de Orbigo. As you progress, the landscape gradually changes with mountains appearing on the horizon. Walking across a fabulous stone bridge you will pass Le pont de Hospital de Orbigo probably one of the most famous buildings along the way. You will walk by the Santo Toribio stone cross near San Justo de la Vega and will see Astorga in the distant valley.

Meals:  B,D

The walk today is a steady climb to Rabanal Del Camino so we recommend that you start early to avoid the hottest part of the day. Walk through the village and follow the tree lined pavements before passing a polar grove and the River Jerga arriving at Murias de Rechivaldo. You will walk through the village of Santa Catalina de Somoza and onto El Ganso. The landscape will change into densely populated oak trees, heather and conifers as you ascend “los Montes de Leon” before reaching Rabanal Del Camino (1200m), a charming mountain village.

Meals:  B,D

Passing through broom, heather and other plant species you will continue your ascent to the famous “Mount Irago”. By the mountain pass you will see the “Iron Cross” (1490m) and you will now be surrounded by mountains. The route continues downwards to Bierzo. Passing by a coniferous forest you will come to Cruz de Ferro and the Hermitage of Santiago. From Manjarin you will be able to see the valley floor and the Leon Mountains. A descent into the Ponferrada Valley passes the quaint village of Acebo before you arrive into Molinaseca with its slate roofs and wooden balconies.

Meals:  B,D

Today's terrain is relatively easy as you continue across the Valley of Ponferrada. You will see the Templar castle before walking through a well-watered valley to Villafranca del Bierzo. The region of Bierzo is situated in a low lying area whose agreeable climate allows for the cultivation of many fruits and vegetables.

Meals:  B,D

Your final day spent in the area of El Bierzo is one of the most beautiful and the most challenging. The route passes through woodlands of chestnuts, conifers, oaks, heather and bracken. You will pass through the narrow valley of the River Valcarce before tackling the challenging ascent of O Cebreiro (1300m), situated between the ranges of Los Ancares and La Sierra Do Courel.

Meals:  B,D

The day begins with an ascent through the pine covered slopes of Monte Poso e Areas before joining the track in the direction of Linares. You will walk through forested areas before arriving at Padornelo where you can fill your water bottles at the fountain. After the village of Fonfria the trail passes through birch forest which takes you to Biduedo, from where you descend to Triacastela. Continue on to Samos where you can visit its impressive monastery, one of the oldest in Spain.

Meals:  B,D

A shorter day today to allow you ample time to visit the monastery. Continue in the afternoon towards Sarria. You will not pass through any other villages so pack some snacks. Sarria is located on a hilltop with a river on either side affording you great views of the region.

Meals:  B,D

We recommend before leaving town that you take the time to visit the Church of the Convent of La Magdalena. Over the “Meseta lucense”, the Lugo Plateau, you will pass through many hamlets dotted along areas of cultivated land, grazing pastures and woodlands and view the first “horreos”, typical raised grain silos. A relatively easy walk until your descent, crossing the Dam of Portomarin where you can see ruins of the ancient flooded village, and into the town for your accommodation.

Meals:  B,D

The route takes you through the brooms which have a magnificent fragrance. Along the path you will pass charming hamlets and calvaries. Over this stage you will pass through Ventas de Naron where you can fill your water bottles, over the gentle Sierra de Ligonde, then downhill through Previsa, Lameiros and Ligonde where will find a church dedicated to the apostle St James. Emperor Charles V stayed here in the modest village of Ligonde, on the 24th of March 1520.

Meals:  B,D

The terrain becomes much easier today as you walk through the villages of Carballal, San Xuilan do Camino and Lebereiro and past Eucalyptus trees. You will be able to stop at one of many villages for lunch. Crossing over the River Seco on the Magdalena Bridge you will reach Furelos and onto Arzúa in the province of La Coruña.

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 today is lovely, as you pass large green fields and rural landscapes.

Meals:  B,D

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. Continue downhill to the city. On arrival 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.

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

  • 35 breakfasts, 33 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. Dinner is not included in Santiago or Pamplona.
  • 35 nights in 2-3 star hotels, farmhouse B&Bs and guesthouses on a twin share basis generally with private facilities. Occasionally facilities may be shared with one or two other rooms.
  • Information pack including route notes & guidebook per room booked
  • Luggage transfer (1 bag of 20kg max pp - additional bags and excess weight will attract a surcharge)
  • Transfers as noted in itinerary on days 14, 15, 20 and 21
  • Emergency hotline
  • Pilgrim's Passport

  • Travel to St Jean de Pied de Port and from Santiago de Compostela
  • Items of a personal nature including drinks
  • Entrance fees
  • Lunch, snacks daily, dinner in Pamplona and Santiago
  • Tour guide – this is a self guided walking trip
  • Transfers unless specified
  • Travel insurance - mandatory
  • Excess baggage charges - please advise us if you will have more than one bag weighing a max of 20kgs as extra charges will apply for additional pieces of luggage. Please do not tie smaller bags onto your main luggage as we only include one bag and they will be charged as an extra bag. Charges will be higher if not paid when final balance for your trip is due.

Grading

moderate  

Daily walks are between 12-30km on well marked trails over diverse terrain – from relatively flat to mountainous. Some of the route is on paved surfaces – you should pay particular attention to your footwear to ensure that it is suitable to avoid blisters. This is a well worn path where route finding will be reasonably straightforward (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. Taxi and bus services operate between towns in the event that you are unable to walk on a particular day.


Departure dates

Daily from 1 Mar to 31 Oct

Notes

DN1
Price for departures during San Fermin, the running of the bulls in Pamplona (5-14 July) on application.

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

$4490USD

Options & Supplements*
  • Fisterra Day Trip - 09:00 to 17:30 (operates daily from 15 Apr to 15 Oct)USD$44
  • Upgrade to superior hotel in Arzua - twinshare ppUSD$60
  • Upgrade to superior hotel in Arzua and Santiago - twinshare ppUSD$100
  • excess luggage (per piece, max 20kg in weight)USD$440
  • Single SupplementUSD$1370
  • Single Traveller SurchargeUSD$1670
*Prices listed are per person

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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.  

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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.

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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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