Camino del Norte – Day 11 – Santoña to Güemes, 25km

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18th September, 2019

  • Day 11: Santoña to Güemes
  • Distance: 25km
  • Weather: Overcast and mild
  • Accommodation: Albergue La Cabaña del abuelo Peuto, € donation

We had a room for the five of us again last night, so we wake early and pack together. I don’t mind leaving in the dark when I’m walking with others, especially as the afternoons are so hot. We first pass a prison and then after Berria, take the coastal alternative to Helgueras and Noja. The coastal path takes us abruptly uphill and there’s some scrambling involved. The rocks are slippery, I wouldn’t want to do this in bad weather.

Taking the beach path to Noja

Taking the beach path to Noja

Sunrise views looking back at Playa de Berria

Sunrise views looking back at Playa de Berria

Taking the coastal alternative to Helgueras and Noja

Taking the coastal alternative to Helgueras and Noja

And another, after climbing a bit higher

And another, after climbing a bit higher

Once back down at sea-level, we celebrate with a selfie!

Fun times with Diane, Patrick, Linda and Ted

Fun times with Diane, Patrick, Linda and Ted

Pilgrims walking along Playa de Noja towards Noja

Walking along Playa de Noja towards Noja

Sunrise on the beach on the Camino del Norte

We walk along the beach and just before arriving in Noja, seemingly out of nowhere, the heavens open and we have to stop and don our ponchos. Arriving into Noja a little wet, we stop for breakfast and coffee. Thankfully we stay long enough for the rain to subside. There’s a weekly market in the square selling everything from fruit and veg, to clothes and I spot a pastelería in the corner. Having quite the sweet tooth, I can’t resist, and buy an apple pastry.

Somewhere after Noja I passed this sweet looking house with a lovely manicured garden

Somewhere after Noja I passed this sweet looking house with a lovely manicured garden

Eucalyptus tree

Eucalyptus tree

We walk together on and off for the rest of the day to the albergue. On arrival, we’re greeted with smiling volunteers who ask if we’re hungry. Always! We’re told to take off our packs and are ushered to a long table. Seconds later, a big bowl of chickpea soup arrives, along with bread, water and wine. What a lovely welcome. After eating, we check in, get our credentials stamped and then are shown to a large cabin with a row of single beds. We’re told there will be an evening service with Father Ernesto at 7.30pm, followed by dinner.

The entrance to Albergue La Cabaña del abuelo Peuto in Güemes

The entrance to Albergue La Cabaña del abuelo Peuto in Güemes

Our cabin room at Albergue La Cabaña del abuelo Peuto in Güemes

Our cabin room at Albergue La Cabaña del abuelo Peuto in Güemes

Between doing Camino chores and the evening welcome meeting, I have time for a snooze on the lovely green lawn. There’s 101 people here tonight and I only recognise about 10! Father Ernesto speaks to everyone briefly and a lady translates. He has certainly had an interesting life.

Dinner is chicken noodle soup, followed by pasta and yoghurt and I’m sat between Oscar (from Spain) and Linda, and opposite Daniel from America. I feel incredibly welcome and am grateful for the hospitality.

Father Ernesto Bustio welcoming pilgrims in the evening at Albergue La Cabaña del abuelo Peuto in Güemes

Father Ernesto Bustio welcoming pilgrims in the evening at Albergue La Cabaña del abuelo Peuto in Güemes

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6 responses to “Camino del Norte – Day 11 – Santoña to Güemes, 25km

  1. I love all your blogs but reading this one is sure making me nostalgic. I started in Irun as well but my real camino I feel began in Noja when the hospitalera was rude to me and I decided I did not want to support this albergue/staff so me and a Belgium kid decided to wild camp on the beach. After a while we met a German couple carrying 25 kilos each ! They had a tent for four, candles, beer, wine, wine opener, fire starter. They were only walking 5 days but they were so excited about everything that their delight rubbed off on all of us ^^ then just as the sun was setting two italians joined our wild camping. The night involved a lot of mosquito, a beach cleaning machine and being woken by the police lights. We stood up quickly at 3am to get out because we thought we were in trouble since wild camping is strictly forbidden there but they raced right past us straight to some guys who were night fishing. We were all puzzled and confused but tired so just went back to sleep only to be woken by a thunderstorm 40 minutes later. We ran for cover under a closed shop. I had met all five of these people that very day but there we were all snuggled together next to a rubbish bin trying to escape the rain at 4am and having an uncontrollable laughing kick. Sweet memories

    Liked by 1 person

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