- Wednesday 22 October, 2014
- Santiago: San Martin Pinario Hospederia, €23 (pilgrim room on the 4th floor incl private bathroom and breakfast)
- Total distance: 126.8km, recorded using a Garmin 62s GPS
It was a very frosty morning when I left the casa rural at 8:30am and still quite dark. I was straight onto a forest track and being covered in flying spiderwebs, actually these long “flying” spiderwebs will probably be my strongest memory of this camino… Each day I tried to eat an apple whilst walking, I always ended up with mouthfuls of spiderwebs!
It was forecast to be another warm day so I tried to walk as quickly as possible in the cool morning to get as many kilometres behind me before it got too hot.
The way marking had been absolutely terrific all the way from Ferrol except for a couple of places today. The first spot where I noticed a lack of arrows was in a forest just after the small town called Calle de Poulo. There were a few junctions in the forest with no arrows, so I looked at the csj guide and it said to just keep on heading straight, which I did and eventually came to an arrow. The csj guide has been a brilliant guide and even though the path is very well way marked, I wouldn’t do this walk without this guide. Whenever I was uncertain (only a few times) I pulled it out and it was so thorough with the descriptions that I knew exactly where I was and which direction to head. It’s also useful for the locations of bars, fountains and all accommodation options along the way, well done to the volunteers who put this wonderful guide together!
I lost an arrow or two in the town of Sigueiro and then I also missed an arrow pointing to the track behind the church on the outskirts of the town. A passing car stopped and told me I was heading the wrong way (having passed the church) and that I needed to go “arriba” … I think my legs just wanted to go down and not up!
Other than a couple of hills it was a relatively easy walk into Santiago, but I was glad I only had ~30km and not the 40km stage that the Cicerone guide proposed for day 4. I had no idea which direction (other than north!) that I was entering Santiago and didn’t recognise anything until the Church of San Francisco was on my right and then I was just a few hundred metres from the cathedral. Entering Santiago today on a sunny, hot day was a stark contrast to the day I had 1 week ago when I entered Santiago at the end of the camino Primitivo in the cold, heavy rain! Thank you Santiago!
I went straight to Praza do Obradoiro and took my selfie with the cathedral behind me, then checked into the Hospederia San Martin Pinario (my favourite pilgrim accommodation in Santiago), all clean and showered I headed over to the pilgrims office and queued for about an hour to receive the Compostela, then I went into the cathedral to hug and thank Santiago, and then I went to my favourite tapas bar (A taberna do Bispo) and restaurant (Casa Marcelo) to fill up on delicious food and Albariño wine… My appetite is back, so it was time to celebrate 🙂
The camino Ingles is a nice track with views of the sea, plenty of forest trails, minimal road walking, and lots of solitude. I never saw any other pilgrims each day that I was walking but I did meet 3 the first night in the Albergue in Pontedeume and then 3 more the second night in Presedo. If you have 4 or 5 days available and want to walk to Santiago, then this is the walk for you!