Holidays

The Route of St. James - Portuguese Route or Caminho Portuguêe

The Route of St. James - Portuguese Route or Caminho Portuguêe

Purpose: Faith, PIlgrimage
No. of days: 14 days - 13 nights
First & Last Cities: Oporto, Santiago
Other cities: Vilarinho, Barcelos, Ponte de Lima, Rubiães, Tui, O Porriño, Redondela, Pontevedra, Caldas de Reis, Padrón
Starting cost: On request

The Portuguese Way is an important route that links Portugal and Spain. Discover what this path is like and the cultural assets you will visit. Remember that to do the Camino de Santiago you don't have to walk the entire route. You can make your choice and depart from any point on the route. Make as many steps or kilometers as you like. 100 miles on foot is enough to qualify you to receive the Compostela, the pilgrim's certificate, upon your arrival at the Cathedral of Santiago.

 

Day 1: Oporto

After arrival formalities at Oporto airport, your guide will transfer you to your hotel. Here you start the Caminho Costal on your quest for Saint James (Santiago). Dinner and overnight at the hotel. [D]

 

Day 2: Oporto, Vilarinho (16.5 miles)

This stage is one of the longest: we can finish in Vilarinho or spend the night at an intermediate point, for example Maia, which is 8 miles from Porto.

 

Day 3: Vilarinho, Barcelos (20 miles)

We can walk leisurely between Vilarinho and Barcelos, to reach the city of the famous rooster and one of the capitals of handicrafts in Portugal. Not to be missed: the Igreja Matriz, the iconic medieval bridge over the Cávado river, the Paço dos Condes de Barcelos and the Porta Nova Tower. Barcelos is one of the cities with the most Jacobean tradition, which you will feel as you walk through its streets and, after all, the famous legend of the Galo de Barcelos has a pilgrim from Santiago as the protagonist. If you want to take the opportunity to get some souvenir, walking around the city offers you more than one opportunity to take the famous rooster, a symbol of national tourism and an identity icon of the Portuguese nation.

 

Day 4: Barcelos, Ponte de Lima (21.5 miles)

We are close to the border with Galicia, and we will start the way to Ponte de Lima. This village, known for being the oldest in Portugal (obtained this title in 1125), is characterized by its medieval architecture and the surrounding area, bathed by the river Lima. In fact, it is a mandatory stop for its tasty cuisine, especially the lamprey, the sarrabulho rice or the pork rojões.

Note: This is a long stage and marked by several gaps. If you decide to spend the night somewhere in between, you can choose Vitorino dos Piães, where you can visit numerous forts.

 

Day 5: Ponte de Lima, Rubiães (11 miles)

At this point we should make an intermediate stop in Rubiães, as Ponte de Lima and the border city of Valença do Minho are separated by almost 40 miles. We will walk along the river Labruja, and experience a very torn part of the Portuguese Way: the climb to the Serra de Labruja, where the famous Cruz dos Franceses is located. If you travel by bike, you may have to carry it on the slopes or follow the path along the M-552 and then the N-201. If you take the climb calmly, you will be able to overcome one of the main stages of the Portuguese Way to Santiago.

 

Day 6: Rubiães, Tui (12 miles)

If you decide to spend the night in Rubiães, today's stage will be short. We have two options: sleep in the beautiful border city of Valença or cross the International Bridge over the Minho River, enter Galicia and spend the night in the city of Tui. If you stay in Valença, you should watch the sunset from one of the strongholds of the Fort, and visit the Church of Santa Maria dos Anjos and the Igreja Matriz de Santo Estevão. In Valença you can also taste good Portuguese cuisine, which you will soon have to change to Galicia. We recommend the Bacalhau de São Teotónio, Cabrito à Sanfins, roasted lamb or green broth.

Day 7: Tui, O Porriño (8 miles)

We are already in Galicia, getting closer and closer to Santiago de Compostela. Visit the historic center of the city of Tui, its Cathedral of Santa Maria, the Convento das Clarisas or the church of Santo Domingo, and start the stage with strength, as you have a short itinerary ahead of you with smooth and well-marked routes. We are 115 miles from Santiago and the Way will take us along the course of the River Minho to pass through a mixture of woods and vines. An important part of the stage will be by road: it is recommended to make yourself visible, wearing light clothes or retro-reflective material.

 

Day 8: O Porriño, Redondela (10 miles)

New smooth stage with reduced unevenness. The only difficulty is in the climb that joins the Albergue de Mos with the chapel of Santiaguiño. Once this point is passed, the Way continues down until we reach Redondela. In this lifetime, you will be able to experience the best of its cuisine: cuttlefish. In the waters of San Simón Island, there is an abundance of this cephalopod, from the squid family, which you can taste with rice, in its own ink or in a pie.

Day 9: Redondela, Pontevedra (12 miles)

A short stage, with reduced slopes -only two steep ascents on the way out of Redondela-, it runs alongside the beautiful Ria de Vigo. It is worth stopping to discover the heritage gems of Redondela, such as the Castle of Soutomaior or the Roman bridge of Pontesampaio. The most convenient thing is to finish the stage in Pontevedra, as the city has a great historical heritage and very lively streets. Don't forget to visit the Sanctuary of the Pilgrim Virgin, symbol of the city and dedicated to pilgrims. And when it comes to gastronomy, don't miss the opportunity to try seafood, shellfish or fish dishes, especially oysters, mussels, clams and zamburiñas. And for dessert, puff pastry filled with almonds.

 

Day 10: Pontevedra, Caldas de Reis (12 miles)

This stage crosses paths and typical villages of the beautiful Galician countryside. You will pass through several points on the national road (N-550, which joins Pontevedra and Santiago de Compostela) to zigzag through plantations, fields and villages all the way to Caldas, a town with a millenary history known for its hot springs. Be sure to visit its Romanesque churches and put your feet in the thermal waters of the Burgas fountain, as they are well worth it! If you haven't tried it yet, try the Galician empada. There are lampreys, berberechos (cockles), sardines or meat... You will find authentic delights on the stages of the Portuguese Way that cross Galicia.

 

Day 11: Caldas de Reis, Padrón (11 miles)

In this stage we will change the province of Pontevedra for the province of A Coruña, to arrive at Padrón, where is the parish of Iria Flavia, one of the most important as far as the Jacobean tradition is concerned. In this place stood the ancient Roman city of the same name, which had an important port. Legend has it that it was in Iria Flavia where the apostle Santiago landed for the first time in peninsular lands, and it was there that his disciples Theodore and Athanasius disembarked, sometime later, in the stone boat in which their mortal remains were transported from Jerusalem. We're pretty close. The stone, or pattern, to which the boat was attached is currently placed on the altar of the Church of Santiago de Padrón. Padrón is also the birthplace of the most international Galician poet, Rosalía de Castro, and in the village, you can visit her Casa da Matança. By the way, you must try the famous Padrón (or Herbón) peppers, with tortilla, with raxo or alone... They are very tasty, but remember: "some are spicy and others not".

 

Day 12: Padrón, Santiago de Compostela (13.5 miles)

Today is the big day! This is the last stage of our journey, and in it we will walk over the steps of Teodoro and Athanasius, the disciples of Santiago the Major who clandestinely collected his remains and, in a stone boat, started a sea crossing to Iria Flavia and later they continued their way to present-day Compostela. This route will be what you do in this last stage, crossing villages and towns until you reach the capital and the most monumental city in Galicia: Santiago de Compostela. In a few hours you will be at Praça do Obradoiro, where emotions will inevitably emerge without warning: on the one hand, you will be eager to hug Santiago so much, but on the other hand, you will not want the Camino to end. But rest assured that the Way will live on in you, pilgrim's word.

 

Day 13: Santiago de Compostela

Santiago de Compostela has drawn for thousands of years pilgrims to the tomb of Saint James from all over Europe because of its miraculous origins and subsequent renown. Great Saints like St. Francis and St. Bridget of Sweden have also made pilgrimages to Santiago. At the Cathedral are housed the relics of St. James and a gigantic thurible or censer, known in Spanish as botafumerio, which will incense the entire church and congregation. After the Holy Mass for the pilgrims, embrace the bust of St. James, which has been hugged for centuries by pilgrims. All of these pious practices assist in creating an unforgettable spiritual experience. [B/D]

At the end of pilgrimage after covering 100 km (62 miles), pilgrims can obtain a ‘certificate’ from the office of Pilgrims verifying the completion of the pilgrimage up to the tomb of the apostle. Make sure you keep stamps along your route in order to obtain your certificate.

 

Day 14: Santiago the Compostela, USA

After breakfast you may have some free time before your transfer to the airport for your connecting flight back home. [B]

 

[B] = Breakfast | [D] = Dinner | [B/D] = Breakfast and Dinner



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1-855-55
TOURS

Tour includes

·  Airfare USA/Oporto//Santiago/USA

·  Arrival and departure transfers

·  13 nights’ accommodation:

o Oporto 1 night

o Vilarinho 1 night

o Barcelos 1 night

o Ponte de Lima 1 night

o Rubiães 1 night

o Tui 1 night

o O Porriño 1 night

o Redondela 1 night

o Pontevedra 1 night

o Caldas de Reis 1 night

o Padrón 1 night

o Santiago de Compostela – 2 nights

·  Meals

o Breakfast daily

o Dinner daily

·  Visits as described in the itinerary

·  Reception, explanation of the program and distribution of credentials

·  Private transportation daily from the arrival point of the Route to the accommodations in a rural house or hotel and vice versa

·  Luggage transportation from step to step

·  Guided tour of the city of Santiago

·  English speaking guide during the tour

·  Technical assistance during the program

·  Document pouch and technical assistance

Not included in tour

·  Airport and security taxes and related fees

·  Travel Insurance

·  Beverages

·  Gratuities

·  Extras and anything not mentioned as “included”


Hotels in your Tour
City Accommodation Name Tripadvisor
Mixed Classes
Oporto Dukes Corner Guest House 4.5
Vilarinho Guesthouse n/a
Barcelos Bway Guest House 4.5
Ponte de Lima Graciosa Guest House 4.5
Rubiães Ninho Albergue n/a
Tui Albergue Ideas Peregrinas 4,5
O Porriño Guesthouse n/a
Redondela Casa Rural As Chivas 4
Pontevedra Hotel Room 4
Caldas de Reis Pension Caldas 3.5
Padrón Camino Portugues 5
Santiago de Compostela Pension Residencia Fornos 4

MEAL PLAN: Normally we include daily breakfast and dinner for all groups. However, the meal plan may vary depending on the organizer's request

·  All hotels will be requested after discussion with the group Organizer


Tour Pricing

The price for the group will be quoted based on the number of passengers, season, hotel type and meal plan.

Group organizers always travel for free if the group has 15 or more paying passengers.

Inclusion of tour conductors must be considered at time of request.

·  If you wish to use this program for your group please either call us (1-855-55-TOURS or use the web Group Quote Request.

·  In either case our specialists will work with you to refine all the details and they will get you a quote with 2 business days. Quotes may be obtained for the air and land portions of just for the land journey.

·  Booking both air and land with us will represent savings for you because of our special Leisure Fares, buying power and longtime relationship with the airlines.

·  We will also may have the choice between regular fares and special leisure fares not available to the public.

 

Tour Code: SJ02OPO22XX


Options

·  Lunches and dinners can be arranged for groups at top restaurants or any restaurant requested by you.

·  We can revise the itinerary to spend more time and provide more depth in those areas that you are interested on.

·  Any other changes to the itinerary will be accommodated depending on the facilities available in the area.


Others

What to pack in your backpack to do the Portuguese Way?

Get a comfortable backpack, anatomically adapted, with adjustable padded shoulder straps and reinforcements on the chairs, chest, and adjustable padded waistband to avoid overloading the shoulders. The backpack should have a size that makes it manageable (30-40 L) and better if it is waterproof. If not, you will have to get a waterproof cover to cover it. The weight of the clothes and objects that we carry must be balanced so that the backpack accommodates well to the body. So, when filling your backpack, place the heaviest items -shoes, pants, warm clothes, books...-, close to your back, and place the sleeping bag at the bottom for cushioning. In the outer pockets, place the material you will use the most and try not to take superfluous things with you. It is recommended to bring:

 

Clothing

Three sets of clothes suitable for walking, that is, light, breathable and quick-drying: in summer short pants and long pants, or pants with detachable legs; in winter, clothes for the cold.

 

Indispensable

Personal hygiene products

Small first-aid kit

Sunscreen and after sun lotion

Flashlight

Metal bottle for water

Knife (a Swiss Army knife is ideal)

Hiking shoes adapted for walking

Other comfortable shoes for visiting cities and towns