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Walking Camino de Santiago  2 Pax          

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ALONG THE CAMINO DE SANTIAGO
2012
9 days/8 nights


Private escorted tour for 2 Pilgrims. Walk the last 100km to gain your Certificate of Pilgrimage/the Compostela. Tour supported by English-speaking driver/guide and cell phones.


Sat.             LEÓN • ASTORGA • PONFERRADA • VILLAFRANCA2 Hikers
Meet in León this morning. Walking tour of the two great monuments associated with the pilgrimage years—the frescoes at San Isidoro Church and the Cathedral compared to Chartres. Depart León for the  Via de la Plata/Silver Route to Astorga; see the Roman excavations, Gaudí’s bishop’s palace, and taste the famous cakes of the Maragatas.  Light lunch en route. Cross the fertile El Bierzo Valley, criss-crossed by vineyards. Stop to see the Door of Forgiveness in Villafranca, then continue to your overnight stay in the vineyards. Sample the wines of the newly emerging appellation el Bierzo over Welcome dinner. Overnight: country inn     B L D


 Sun.            VILLAFRANCA • O CEBREIRO • TRIACASTELA
Over breakfast, study your walking maps, and lace up your boots. Ascend the pass to O Cebreiro by vehicle, site of one of the great miracle stories of the Camino; explore the Celtic thatched village and visit the shrine church. Continue to Alto do Poio, which marks the highest pass; below the pass lies the Capilla San Roque, and below that Fonfría, from where you’ll begin walking, with your cellphone and picnic in your daypack. Glorious views stretch out beneath you as you descend to Triacastela/ three castles; no castles remain in this 9th c village but a lovely 18th c church still stands  at the end of the path. Meet your guide at trail’s end for a detour to visit the Monastery at Samos before continuing to your overnight outside Triacastela in a manor house hotel. Dinner in the village. Overnight: country inn     B PICNIC D     14KM


Mon.            TRIACASTELA • SARRIA • PARADELA
After breakfast, your guide will take you back to the outskirts of Triacastela, near San Xil, from where you’ll set off for the walk to Sarria. At Furela, a finely carved capital can still be seen, dedicated to San Roque, one of the patron saints of pilgrims. On arrival in Sarria, proceed to the Calle Mayor, a beautifully preserved medieval street in the heart of the old village. Your guide will meet you at the Parish Church of El Salvador, a Romanesque structure, built in the 11th c.  Beyond you have the fortress of Sarria, dating to the 14th c, and the Magdalene convent, which once housed a hospital. From here, continue to Paradela and your overnight stop in another countryside hotel. Dinner at the manor house. Overnight: country inn   B  D   15KM


Camino WalkTues.            PARADELA • SARRIA • PORTOMARIN
After breakfast, your guide will transfer you back to the outskirts of Sarria, at Mouzós, to walk the Camino to Portomarin. Along the Way today you have the beautiful Romanesque portal on the Church of Santiago at Barbadela. At Marzan, you’ll pass a molino/mill. The village of Brea is mentioned in the Codex Calixtinus. You’ll pass the ruins of the Monastery at Loio, seat of the Knights of Santiago in the 12th c. When you reach Portomarin, you cross the River Miño on a Roman bridge and ascend to the 12th c village, moved stone by stone when the river was diverted to flood the plain. San Nicolás Church stands as a 13th c fortress, and belonged to the Order of St. John of Jerusalem. Meet your guide at the inn, unless you need a transfer earlier. Relax over dinner at the inn with a river view. Overnight: Pousada Portomarin    B D     15.6KM


Wed.            PORTOMARIN • GONZAR • VENTAS DE NARÓN • LAMEIROS • PIDRE
Set off after breakfast from the inn.  Today Gonzar is a ghost town, but was a parish seat in the Middle Ages. Castromaior is so named as the site of another castro/Celtiberian hill fort; today you can see a Romanesque church in the village. Hospital is  named for its medieval hospital, offering both refuge and care to pilgrims. Ventas de Narón is mentioned in the Codex Calixtinus, site of a 9th c battle between the northern Christian kingdoms and the Arabs. Stop to see the hermitage of Santa María Magdalena at Ventas. From here, call your guide, then walk on the last stretch to Lameiros, and meet at the chapel dedicated to St. Lazarus.  Detour to see the lovely Church of Vilar de Donas, with frescoes, before continuing to your rural guest house. Dinner in the countryside. Overnight: country inn    B  PICNIC D     14.7KM


Thur.            PIDRE • PALAS • MELIDE
After breakfast, your guide will transfer you back to the Camino, to Palas,  conclusion of the 12th stage of the Way according to the Codex Calixtinus. Walk on, from Palas to Melide. Meet your guide at the 12th c Church of San Pedro, with its distinctive Roman­esque portal. Since the Middle Ages, this town has been an important market center.  From here, drive on to your rural guest house and dinner. Overnight: country inn    B  D     15.2KM


Fri.            MELIDE • ARZUA
After breakfast, your guide will drop you back in Melide to begin walking. As you cross the River Iso, watch for the ancient hospital, so welcome to medievalpilgrims. Call your guide as you approach Arzua. Transfer to your guest house for dinner and overnight. Overnight: country inn     B  D     13.4KM


Sat.           ARZUA • LAVACOLLA • SANTIAGO
After breakfast, your guide will transfer you along the Camino to Lavacolla, where pilgrims traditionally bathed prior to entering the Holy City. Your guide will meet you in Santiago at the Cathedral. Stand in front of the Portal of Glory in the early afternoon sunlight and contemplate Daniel’s beautiful smile before you enter the church.  After a visit to the Cathedral and light lunch, settle into your luxury hotel built as a hospital by Queen Isabel of Spain for the royal pilgrims. Enjoy an afternoon walking tour of this UNESCO World Heritage city before a Taste of Galicia on the pilgrim’s street tonight—Vinos y Tapas from the Northwest.  Overnight: manor house near Cathedral     B  D   13KM


Sun.            SANTIAGO MADRID
Tour ends with breakfast.     B

 

 


INCLUDED:
Hotels or similar, double occupancy, w/breakfast
Meals per itinerary
Entrances and tours per itinerary
Fully escorted by English-speaking driver/guide

 

PRICE: Please call
Airport/train transfers in & out León &Santiago
Walking maps & Cell-phone


 

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