The Portuguese Camino

9 – 23 of August

This summer we’re going to do el Camino Portugues, walking from Porto to Santiago de Compostela, taking the litoral path most of the time and breathing the fresh air coming from the Atlantic ocean along our way.

Sunday, August 9: Travel Day

We’re going to take a direct flight from Valencia to Porto, which leaves at 16:25 and by 6pm local time we should already be in Porto. That will give us some time to explore the city and have dinner in a nice restaurant.

Accommodation: Porto Trindade Hotel

Monday, August 10: Porto – Labruge

As the tradition goes, we are going to start our journey from the cathedral of Porto – La Sé. Many big cathedrals are named la Sé, and it is no coincidence. The name is derived from Látin word sedere (to sit), as it used to indicate where the power of the city resides (sits).
We’ll take a path along the river, which will take us to the ocean and then walk along the coast the rest of the day, finishing in Labruge. Many paths here have boardwalks which rise above the sand and facilitate walking, plus add additional value to the views.
Length: 24km

Notable sights along the way:

Accommodation: Casa da Praia Guest House

Tuesday, August 11: Labruge – Póvoa de Varzim

Second day of walking, and we continue following the coastline, with many boardwalks helping us with that. As this is the Atlantic coast, the shoreline is quite rugged, with very few sandy beaches or coves.
Length: 15km

Notable sights along the way:

Accommodation: Luso Brasileiro

Wednesday, August 12: Póvoa de Varzim – Esposende

A lot of what used to be windmills await us on this day. Nowadays most of them are private used as summer houses. We’ll start with the paved promenade of Póvoa de Varzim, to later get out of urbanized areas into agricultural lands and summer houses. Towards the end of the day’s trip we’ll get on a nice path along Cávado river, which forms a part of Litoral Norte Nature Park.
Length: 19km

Notable sights along the way:

Accommodation: HI Ofir – Pousada de Juventude

Thursday, August 13: Esposende – Amorosa

This is one of the stages in whici we’re going to be moving inland, but that is a welcome change of scenery with very green and wooded area and a really picturesque bridge crosssing Neiva river.
Length: 20km

Notable sights along the way:

Accommodation: Hotel Areias Claras

Friday, August 14: Amorosa – Vila Praia de Âncora

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The day starts in the beach town of Amorosa, then we’ll cross Limia river by boat and get to the jewel of this stage – Viana do Castelo. Once there we will take the funicular up to Santa Luzia church where we can also explore the views of the whole city and the river.
The stage continues along the river bank passing by Santiago da Barra fort, and then along the coast till we reach Vila Praia de Âncora.
Length: 26km

Notable sights along the way:

Accommodation: Albergaria Quim Barreiros

Saturday, August 15: Vila Praia de Âncora – Oia

Another stage with lots of different activities throught the day. First we’ll continue walking along the coast until we get to Caminha. Once there we can explore the town and then take another boat trip to get to the other side of Minho river, which will also mean leaving Portugal and getting to Galícia. The day does not end there though as we’ll pass a very pretty town of A Guarda and walk along the rugged coast until Oia.
Length: 24km

Notable sights along the way:

Accommodation: Casa Toñi

Sunday, August 16: Oia – Baiona

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The Camino takes us along the cycling path between A Guarda and Baiona, with pleasant detour over a hill just before reaching our destination for the day. Baiona is a tourist town with a medieval historical center situated by the outlet of the Vigo Bay, with lots of interesting places to visit inside.
Length: 19km

Notable sights along the way:

Accommodation: Hotel Vasco da Gama

Monday, August 17: Baiona – Vigo

This staged is marked by the presence of Cies Islands – a beach paradise with crystalline waters, in a natural environment that makes it a unique wildlife observatory, always visible on left hand side. The path takes us to another big fishing port of Galícia – Vigo, with a charming old town and a castle on top of the hill.
Length: 25km

Notable sights along the way:

Accommodation: Hotel Oca Ipanema

Tuesday, August 18: Vigo – Redondela

One of the most scenic stages of Portuguese Camino with splendid views of the estuary from the hills surrouding Vigo. The way takes us to Senda del Agua – and old trail, that was used to bring water from the mountains to the village. Very green and foresty path all along the way.
Length: 18km

Notable sights along the way:

Accommodation: Hospedaje Bahía de San Simon

Wednesday, August 19: Redondela – Pontevedra

This will be the time to leave the Atlantic coast and walk into Galician hills and forests as we are getting closer to Santiago de Compostela. To make it even more interesting we’ll take the fluvial trail in the last third of the stage to get away from traffic and enjoy nature to the fullest. Pontevedra is certainly a gem of the Camino, with it’s medieval old town, which is actually the second largest in Galicia.
Length: 21km

Notable sights along the way:

Accommodation: Hotel Virgen del Camino

Thursday, August 20: Pontevedra – Caldas de Reis

Camino Portuguese Day 8: Pontevedra to Caldas de Reis

Most of this stage takes place on asphalt and cobblestone, but there are a few natural pathways mixed in to keep our legs from feeling too beat up. That being said, the entrance to Caldas de Reis is one of the most beautiful approaches on the Camino Portuguese.
Length: 22km

Notable sights along the way:

Accommodation: Hotel Sena

Friday, August 21: Caldas de Reis – Padrón

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This is another short and easy stage that can be finished in less than five hours. Even though the camino mostly follows the axis of the N-550 road, it is a very beautiful stage overall. The church of Santiago de Padron is also a very important stop for pilgrims. Inside the church, under the altar, we can find the Pedrón, a granite block that was tied to the boat that carried apostle St James.
Length: 19km

Notable sights along the way:

Accommodation: Hotel Rosalía

Saturday, August 22: Padrón – Santiago de Compostela

The final stage of the journey, arriving at the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela. This is the day when we’ll probably meet more people doing the Camino than ever, with the our destination getting closer and closer with every step. We’ll arrive in Santiago around lunchtime which will give us plenty of time to explore the city, rest and have dinner together.
Length: 23km

Accommodation: Hotel Universal

Sunday, August 23: Travel Day

Time to return to Valencia! As there is a direct flight at 12:10, we won’t even need to hurry and have the chance to get a good night’s sleep, recovering after the journey. Since the flight takes just over an hour we can be in Valencia by lunchtime.

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