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If you want to make this centuries-old pilgrimage, but don’t fancy the idea of walking, then this is the perfect tour for you. Though the journey has traditionally been a religious one, nowadays the Camino is done by thousands of people from all over the world, for many different reasons. Our guides will take you on a ride along the ancient route, starting in Burgos into the plains of Castilla and Leon, through picturesque countryside and stunning, historical cities, towns, and villages like Burgos, Leon, and Santiago de Compostela. Oh, and the food! The region boasts arguably the finest cuisine in the country. Needless to say, you’ll be sampling it all. Plus, you’ll also be staying in luxury hotels and charming guest houses along the way.
Our clients will be greeted at the airport Madrid Barajas or at your hotel in Madrid at 10 am. From there we travel by minibus to Burgos – transit time approximately 3 1/2 hours with a short coffe break. Excellent lunch in Burgos. Upon arrival there will be time for a stroll around the city, visiting the cathedral and collect our Pilgrim’s Passports by bike. Optional supper in town at the well-known restaurant “Pancho” – serving tapas and typical Castillian cuisine. Dating back to 884, Burgos rises from the banks of the Rio Arlanzón, and is one of the most outstanding examples of Spain’s gothic architecture. This is one of the most important cities along the Camino and is the point of departure for our tour.
Following a solid buffet breakfast, we leave Burgos cycling towards the villages of Hontanas, Castrojeriz and Boadilla del Camino. We pass the famous 12th century bridge of Fitero crossing the river Pisuerga. After lunch in Hontanas we continue cycling to Frómista with its church dedicated to San Martin and one of the finest examples of the Spanish Romanesque style. We pass through more charming villages before arriving in Carrión. Here, we spend the night and have supper in the Hotel Real Monasterio de San Zoilo, associated with the order of Cluny. This town is home to three national monuments, including the Iglesia de Santiago, with one of the best examples of Romanesque sculpture. The monastery’s cloister is a jewel of the Renaissance style.
Bicycling start after breakfast, we head for Sahagún, pausing at some small villages along the way. After lunching there, we take the minibus to arrive at the mediaeval city of Leon – founded in the year 68 a.d. – staying at the magnificent Hotel Parador Hostal San Marcos, with its splendid Renaissance facade, a convent and pilgrims’ hospital dating back to the 16th century. We will have ample time to stroll around this ancient city and visit its impressive gothic cathedral boasting 125 unique stained glass windows. We will dine at the Parador which offers an excellent choice of the regional cuisine, after visiting the “Barrio Húmedo” in the old part of the city.
Morning departure by minibus towards Astorga, the point of confluence of two original Pilgrim routes, the French way, and the Vía de la Plata (the Roman route). Here, we visit the cathedral, the pilgrim´s hospital and A. Gaudi´s Episcopal Palace which is a pilgrims museum. From Astorga, we bicycle on to Rabanal where we remount our cycles and begin an uphill climb, to reach the Cruz de Ferro (Iron Cross) followed by a long descent towards the territory known as El Bierzo, stopping for a hearty farmhouse lunch at El Acebo, a charming mountain village. After visiting the main city of Ponferrada and its dominating Templar Castle, we proceed to Villafranca where we spend the night at the Hotel Parador Villafranca del Bierzo.
From our hotel we will cycle approx. 18 miles to “La Herrería” where we decide whether we want to tackle the steepest climb on the “Camino” to O’Cebreiro. At the summit, we will enjoy exceptional views into Galicia accompanied by a a hearty lunch of regional specialities. Our cycling route will start some miles further on at Monte de Poio, taking us through Atlantic forests, scattered with small villages, finally stopping in the village of Sarría. From there, we will take the minibus along the Miño valley and arrive at the day’s end at Portomarín. We will be lodged at the Posada de Portomarin in the new village overlooking the reservoir and the green valley of the Miño river.
The minibus will provide our transportation as far as Arzúa, where we will be bicycling the last 28 miles. These are the hardest, as we are faced with repeated, but modest uphill climbs. The “Façade of Glory” – Pórtico de la Gloria- awaits us. Crossing the Plaza de Obradoiro we dismount our bicycles, and shake hands and embrace each other to celebrate our journey`s completion and adventures. It’s time to pay homage to Saint James and get our final passport stamps at the pilgrimage office to obtain the “La Compostelana” certificate. Our accommodation is at the 5 star hotel Palacio del Carmen or at the Parador Hostal Reyes Católicos, and we dine later at the Parador restaurant. Santiago de Compostela, in the middle ages, the third most important city of Pilgrimage after Jersualem and Rome, attracts pilgrims from all over the world.
After breakfast, we returm to Madrid by minibus, pausing for lunch around mid-day. The approximate transit time is 7 hours. Our Evening on arrival at Madrid is free.
Breakfast at the hotel and transfer to airport for groups.
|Duration||8 days/7 nights|
|Price per person||
|Departure for guided tours 2019||
|Included services in the guided tour||