Want to see all the iconic highlights on the Camino Frances in just two weeks? Walk from St Jean Pied de Port in France over the mountainous region of the Pyrenees across the flat plateau of Northern Spain to Logrono. To top it off, you will walk the famous last 100kms through the undulating hilly landscape of Galicia, finishing in Santiago de Compostela
This trip createstonne(s) of CO2, we offset it for free
Your first stop on the Camino Frances is the quaint French town of Saint-Jean-Pied-de-Port – the traditional starting point of the Camino Frances. Before you set off through the Pyrenees, explore this scenic gem and soak in the excitement of the town as pilgrims flock to start their pilgrimage.
Logrono is the capital city of La Rioja. However it owes its prominence in the region to the Camino de Santiago which has passed through its cobbled streets since the Middle Ages. The Puente de Piedra is the oldest bridge crossing the river Ebo into Logrono and is still used today by pilgrims. Sampling the local wine when here is a must do but also is trying some of the local dishes in one of the many bars and restaurants you will discover as you wander the historic centre where you will also encounter the Cathedral of Santa María la Redonda where there is a painting of the Christ on the Cross by Michelangelo.
Santiago de Compostela
Just before arriving to Santiago you will pass the Mount of Joy, here take time to get a stamp at the small church but also go over to your left to visit the Pilgrim Statues pointing at the city. It is here that you will get your first glimpse as the Cathedral in the distance. There are few feelings like the one of arriving to Praza do Obradoiro in front of the Catedral de Santiago de Compostela after your long pilgrimage. Once in the city, you can explore the bustling medieval streets, filled with market stalls, restaurants, bars and buskers, as well as the many interesting museums and Alameda Park for a relaxing stroll if you haven’t had enough of walking!
Saint Jean Pied De Port to Santiago De Compostela
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SAINT JEAN PIED DE PORT (Arrival)
You’ll be booked into a hotel in the heart of the small town. The rooms are en-suite.
Day 2 24.3km
SAINT JEAN PIED DE PORT
This first day is considered the most difficult as the Camino crosses the Pyrenees. The ‘Camino Napoleon’ kicks off with a steep climb, on through orchards and past country houses and then, later, through Alpine-style meadows, before weaving its way alongside leafy beech woods towards the Spanish border and the descent into Roncesvalles. The Valcarlos Camino mainly follows the road which runs through the valley alongside the River Nive or River Valcarlos. Don’t miss the Collegiate Church in Roncesvalles.
NOTE: If you would like to walk at a more relaxed pace, we can arrange an alternative route (though not as rewarding) that splits this walking day into two stages (12km and 14km), staying overnight in the village of Valcarlos. Here you will be staying in a two-star hotel. This is route through Valcarols is no the usual Camino itinerary and the walk is not as rewarding as it follows the main road. IMPORTANT: The Napoleon Route over the Pyrenees is closed for Pilgrims from the 1st November until the 31st March. Pilgrims need to use the alternative route via Valcarlos if they are travelling within these dates. Travelling on the Napoleon Route at this time is forbidden and all pilgrims going over the Pyrenees and having to be rescued before that time will be fined €5,000.
Day 3 21.4km
The Camino crosses two beautiful mountain passes and continues on through beech and oak woods and meadows before coming to Espinal, where the panoramic views of the countryside, with the Pyrenees in the background, are a sight to behold. The River Arga runs alongside this part of the Camino and continues its course all the way to Larrasoana.
Day 4 21.3km
The Camino runs along the River Arga, at the foot of a group of hills covered in beech, oak and Scots pine. As we approach Pamplona, the landscape shows more signs of civilisation, with its reforested conifers and farmlands.
Day 5 23km
PUENTE LA REINA
When leaving Pamplona behind, you are also leaving behind the Atlantic area of Navarra. From here onwards, the landscape will be dominated by cereal crops, Holm oaks and Mediterranean brushwood. The Pamplona basin is left behind too when you cross the “Alto del Perdon”.
Day 6 21.6km
PUENTE LA REINA
The Camino to Estella is very uneven and quite agricultural. Small towns and villages are dotted amongst cereal fields, vineyards and olive trees.
Day 7 21.9km
Today you go through the Rioja area of Navarra. Enjoy the olive trees, cereal fields and, most importantly, the vineyards. From Villamayor de Monjardin to Los Arcos, you will cover 12km without coming across a single village.
Day 8 28km
Today we leave Navarra and journey into Rioja. Expect a pleasant hike into undulating countryside. On this route you will pass the stunning ruins of Clavijo castle. Finally we come to the town of Logrono, strategically situated on the border between Alava and Navarra.
An option to split into two days 17km /10km days, with a stop over in Viana. Here you will be staying at a charming 2* hotel
Day 9 274.91km
Private transfer from Logrono to Sarria with stopover in Leon for lunch (not included) & 1 hour sightseeing
Day 10 22km
Expect a peaceful walk in shady oak woods and pretty villages on quiet country roads. The village of Barbadelo (580m) has a beautiful Romanesque church that is worth a visit. The next significant village is Ferreiros. When you arrive in Portomarin (550m) you can relax on one of the numerous terraces of the main plaza.
Day 11 24.2km
PALAS DE REI
From the village, the Camino crosses the river Minho and climbs steadily uphill. On your way, you’ll be crossing Gonzar and passing the Romanesque Church of Santa María, Castromaior. The calm of the Galician Cemetery in Ligonde on a sunny day is a rest in itself. In Eirexe, the Romanesque portal of the church is a beauty, featuring a sculpture of Daniel and animals, as well as a statue of Santiago de Peregrino. You will then arrive in Palas de Rei (565m).
Day 12 29.1km
PALAS DE REI
Today, the Camino continues slightly downhill, passing the village of Casanova and the charming village of Leboreiro. At Melide (454m), stop in one of the many restaurants to try some local specialities. Later today, the Camino will follow a forest track and cross several streams bringing you to the village of Boente with its church of Santiago. Then, you’ll encounter the medieval village of Ribadiso, and finally Arzua (389m). This small town has two churches that you can visit, Santa María and La Magdalena.
NOTE: An option to split into two days 14km /14km
Day 13 17.6km
This shaded section of the Camino will pass through woods, along streams and through sleepy villages. Take your time and visit the chapel of Santa Irena, with its unique statues of Santiago. The rest of the way to Rua-O Pino is on a quiet country road. Rua (310m) is one of the less crowded stopping points before Santiago de Compostela.
Day 14 20.5km
SANTIAGO DE COMPOSTELA
You’re nearly there! The next stage will be Lavacolla where pilgrims traditionally washed in the river before reaching Santiago de Compostela. The tall eucalyptus trees line your way to Monte del Gozo (368m), or Mount of Joy. From here, you can see your goal – the Cathedral of Santiago! After a descent to the city (264m, population 80,000) you’ll be able to witness this UNESCO World Heritage Site up-close. Marvel at the architecture and relish the wonderful atmosphere in this cultural and spiritual mecca.
SANTIAGO DE COMPOSTELA
After breakfast, we bid you farewell.
If you wish to stay in the area, we recommend that you:
– Take your time and visit the magnificent historic centre
– Continue with us along the wild “Camino Fisterra” (Finisterre Way), and stay overnight at the 2* hotel in the light house!
– or take a bus to Fisterra. (Bus to fisterra: 9am, 10am, bus back in Santiago 16:45 & 19:00. takes 3hours)
– Visit the unspoilt sandy coves and beaches of the west coast. With very few tourists, you are guaranteed a very special experience.
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