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Camiño dos Faros: The Lighthouse Way (8 days)

Camino Frances Final Stage: Sarria to Santiago

Tour details

Rating
Average rating:   5,  2 reviews
Country
Spain
Activity type
Self Guided Walking, Camino Tours
Duration
7 days & 6 nights
Difficulty
Moderate
Accomodation
Comfortable
Availability
April - October

Itinerary

Day 1: Sarria
Day 2: Portomarin
Day 3: Palas de Rei
Day 4: Arzua
Day 5: A Rua
Day 6: Santiago de Compostela
Day 7: Departure


Overview for Camino Frances Final Stage: Sarria to Santiago

Walk the last 100 km of the classic French Way (Camino Frances) of the Camino from Saria to Santiago de Compostela (the minimum required to earn your Compostela). This final section of the walk takes you through the region of Galicia in Northern Spain to Santiago for a unique experience you’ll treasure forever.

Note: This tour is available from 1 April until 31 October. If you are looking at winter dates, please consider our Winter Programme.

Itinerary for Camino Frances Final Stage: Sarria to Santiago

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Day 1: Arrive at Sarria

Arrival by public bus or private transfer to Sarria. Sarria is a small town in Galicia and the last place from which you can start your Camino and collect your Compostela. If you arrive early, we strongly recommend to take a taxi to Samos and visit the Monastery that was founded in the 6th century and has welcomed pilgrims since then. The optional walk from Samos to Sarria is 13.8 km. You can also book an extra night at Sarria in order to do this beautiful section of the Camino between Samos and Sarria.

  • Walking for the day: 14 km, 3-4 hours – optional walk in case of early arrival
  • Overnight in a hotel in Sarria (Roma or similar), breakfast included

Day 2: Sarria – Portomarin

Setting off for Portomarin you pass Sarria Castle and start your first walk of the Camino, mainly along small country roads and a few pathways. Most of the roads are tree-lined and will provide good shade in the sun. There are hamlets every kilometre or so. You will not have to worry about water or food and whenever you sit down and take a short rest, you will hear interesting stories from other pilgrims.

  • Walking for the day: 22 km, 5-6 hours, ↑200 m ↓300 m
  • Overnight in a hotel in Portomarin (Pousada Portomarin or similar), breakfast included

Day 3: Portomarin – Palas de Rei

Walk downhill along Portomarin’s main street; leaving Palas de Rei, the Camino crosses the Minho river and then steadily climbs upwards, before passing through Gonzar and Castromaior, where the tiny Romanesque Church of Santa Maria is situated. Continue along country roads edged by bright yellow gorse, pine and oak trees to reach the high point of today’s walk at Sierra de Ligonde (750m), then descend to the old hamlet of Ligonde, once a popular resting point along the Camino. For the last 3 km leading into Palas de Rei, you will walk on a dirt track alongside the main road. Upon arrival, the hotel owners will pick you up and drive you to your accommodation in Pidre.

  • Walking for the day: 24 km, 6 hours, ↑450 m ↓300 m
  • Overnight in A Parada das Bestas, breakfast and dinner included

Day 4: Palas de Rei – Arzua

Short morning transfer from Pidre to Palas de Rei (10 minutes) to start one of the longest but technically very easy sections of the route. Pilgrims consider this section the start of the countdown because shortly after Coto there are stone markers at the side of the path with the distance to Santiago marked. Much of the day is shaded and shortly after Melide, you will walk through oak and eucalyptus forests. Melide is where the Camino Primitivo merges with the Camino Frances. You can also ask your hosts to be taken to the Pambre Castle in the morning and take a shortcut to Coto, away from the busy roads. Relax on the river bank at Ribadiso, before ascending to Arzua.

  • Walking for the day: 29 km, 7 hours, ↑225 m ↓400 m
  • Overnight in hotel in Arzua (Pazo de Santa Maria or similar), breakfast and dinner included

Day 5: Arzua – A Rua

Upon leaving Arzua perhaps pick up some delicious cheese for lunch; then continue through the old quarter of the town as the walk leads past sturdy oak trees which give way to lush meadows.  Visit the medieval shrine at Santa Irene and the Baroque fountain of healing waters. While not as spectacular as on the previous day, today’s walk will enable you to make many new friends among the pilgrims going to Santiago.

  • Walking for the day: 18 km, 4-5 hours, ↑200 m ↓225 m
  • Overnight in a country hotel (O Acivro or similar), breakfast and dinner included

Day 6: A Rua – Santiago de Compostela

Your final stage! You will walk mostly through rural settings and eucalyptus groves. At Monte del Gozo, pilgrims historically make one last stop at the spring in Lavacolla, to wash face and feet before presenting themselves before the Saint. Enter the ancient city of Santiago de Compostela and relish the end of your journey at the Cathedral.

  • Walking for the day: 22 km, 5-6 hours, ↑175 m ↓175 m
  • Overnight in a hotel (A Tafona or similar), breakfast included

Day 7: Departure

Arrange extra nights in Santiago or enjoy breakfast and then make your way to Santiago Airport. If you have time, explore the old city of Santiago de Compostela before you leave.

Hotels for Camino Frances Final Stage: Sarria to Santiago

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Accommodation is in very nice, simple but comfortable hotels, located close to the route of the Camino. All of them have private en-suite rooms and offer a warm welcome to walkers, traditional hospitality and delicious local food. We have carefully hand-picked all places and regularly monitor their quality. We have tried to choose accommodations that offer friendly service, clean and comfortable rooms and local flavour.

*Hotels are subject to availability. In case a particular hotel is fully booked for your desired dates, we will replace it with a hotel of equal or higher value and quality level. We will provide exact accommodation details to you upon booking confirmation.

Meals

Breakfast is included (usually buffet breakfast/coffee and toast/bread/croissant) on all days, as well as 3 dinners. When no restaurant location is available on the route, lunches and snacks should either be bought from local shops, or packed lunch can be pre-ordered from your hotel the night before. Where no dinner is included, most places serve hearty pilgrim menus – you can get a 3-course dinner including wine and water for GBP 10.

Travel for Camino Frances Final Stage: Sarria to Santiago

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You are best to fly in and out of Santiago de Compostela. An alternative airport is A Coruña.

Please note that flight information can change rapidly, and not all flights run daily. Please do check directly with the airlines’ websites or Skyscanner before finalising any booking with us. Please do not book your flights before we have confirmed your booking.

Transfers to/from Airports

Arrival in Sarriá

The best way to reach Sarria is to fly into Santiago de Compostela airport and first get a shuttle bus to the central bus station of Santiago (with www.empresafreire.com; every 30 min). From there you can travel to Lugo with the same company (Freire) or with ALSA www.alsa.es and then take another local bus from Lugo to Sarria (35 min; at least 6 services a day). Check up to date timetables at www.monbus.es.

On workdays (Mon to Friday) there is also a direct bus from the Santiago de Compostela central bus station to Sarria with the company Monbus. But remember that you first have to travel into town to the central bus station as described above. You can also book private transfers with us.

Departure from Santiago de Compostela

There is a shuttle bus to the airport of Santiago from the centre of Santiago with different stops in the city (check www.empresafreire.com) or you can book a private transfer with us.

Baggage Transfers

All hotel to hotel luggage transfers on walking days are included (maximum one piece of 20 kg per person). When arriving at hotels, sometimes your luggage will have been taken to your room awaiting your arrival. However, don’t be surprised if in some places your luggage is waiting for you at the reception desk. Please politely ask someone from the staff if you need assistance to bring it to your room.

Travel Insurance

A comprehensive and reputable travel insurance policy is essential to your enjoyment and peace of mind while on an active holiday. It is highly recommended when booking with us that all group members have valid travel insurance which includes cover for all activities included in your trip. We have teamed up with World Nomads Logo to offer you adequate cover at a great value from a reputable insurer, and it takes only a few minutes to buy online.

Buy travel insurance online

Country Info

Up-to-date travel advice on Spain is available here.

Trip Info for Camino Frances Final Stage: Sarria to Santiago

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Difficulty Grade: Moderate

This walk is graded moderate and includes walks of 20 km per day on average (the longest one is 29 km); the terrain is flat or hilly (read more about difficulty grades) without steep ascents or descents. You will follow a mixture of dirt roads, woodland paths, minor roads and some busier roads close to the bigger towns and cities.

Route Navigation

The routes are well waymarked, and the itinerary is very easy to follow. The route is marked with yellow painted arrows and a yellow shell on a blue background. We strongly advise you to follow only marked trails and never try to shorten the path through the unknown and unmarked terrain. We will provide you with detailed road notes and maps, and you can call our 24/7 local assistance phone number anytime. More detailed info on route navigation will be included in your holiday information pack.

When to Go

This trip is available from April till the end of October. Best months to visit are April – June and September – October as in summer months it may become too hot (and crowded). The flexibility of self-guided holidays means that there are no fixed dates and you can start your trip on any date during the season. If you are looking at winter dates, please consider our Winter Programme.

Compostela/Pilgrims Passport

You can obtain one at the start of your walk in the pilgrim’s office or the local church in town. You need to get the passport stamped in churches, restaurants or hotels along the way. At the end of the walk in Santiago de Compostela, you can obtain your Compostela Certificate (only if you have walked the last 100 km finishing in Santiago).

Important: Due to the large influx of pilgrims during summer, and to avoid long waiting times, the Pilgrim Office in Santiago has installed a numbered ticket system for issuing pilgrim certificates (the Compostela). This new system allows pilgrims to collect their ticket and, using a QR Code, to check the status of the queue and estimated waiting time to obtain the Compostela. However, the number of tickets per day is limited so on days with high numbers of pilgrims arriving, there is a possibility that not all pilgrims will be able to collect their certificate on the day of arrival and will have to return for it on the following morning.

Therefore, if obtaining a pilgrim certificate is important to you, and if you plan to undertake the Camino between April 15th and October 15th, we recommend that you arrange the return travel in such a way that you will be in Santiago de Compostela during the morning after your arrival. Better still, we encourage you to book a second night in Santiago so that you can collect the certificate without rush and enjoy the charms of the city!

What to Bring

We recommend that you travel as light as possible – airlines might charge you an extra fee, and during ground transfers, the place might be limited. Ideally, you should bring one piece of luggage weighing no more than 20 kg (to be checked in) and a daily pack (15 – 20 l rucksack) for your everyday essentials (snacks, drinking water, camera, etc.). Below is a non-exclusive list of what you should bring to this trip. More detailed info will be included in your holiday information pack. If you need further advice, please contact a reputable outdoor retailer or us.

  • Good hiking boots or trail running shoes
  • Hiking socks
  • Several t-shirts (preferably breathable/fast drying)
  • Packable waterproof and windproof jacket with hood
  • Synthetic mid layer or warm fleece
  • Trainers and/or sandals – to relax and wear inside the accommodation
  • Sunglasses, sunscreen and lip salve
  • Hat/Baseball cap
  • Personal First Aid kit (wet wipes, flu remedies, stomach remedies)

Included for Camino Frances Final Stage: Sarria to Santiago

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  • 6 nights in nice hotels in private en-suite rooms (mostly 3-star)
  • 6 breakfasts
  • 3 dinners
  • Detailed digital holiday information pack including GPS-checked and regularly updated route descriptions, road notes and maps. Please note that the info pack is emailed to you prior to departure and no printed documents are mailed or provided on site
  • Luggage transfers from hotel to hotel on all walking days (up to 20 kg per person)
  • Return transfer from the trail to the Day 3 accommodation
  • 24/7 phone assistance by our local office/representative

Supplements

  • Single room supplement applies to members of a group who require a single room
  • This holiday is available for solo travellers; as costs are not shared, there is a solo traveller supplement to the standard price.

To see the price of the holiday for your desired dates, including the cost of different options and supplements, please click the CHECK AVAILABILITY button above.

Other Trip-Related Costs

  • Entrance fees for attractions and museums

Excluded

  • Flights and airport transfers
  • Travel insurance
  • All lunches and 3 dinners
  • Personal expenses such as snacks, drinks, phone calls, extra transfers, tips, etc.
  • Any items not specifically mentioned as ‘included’ in the programme

Extensions and Optional Extras

  • Extra nights along the trail are bookable upon request
  • Airport transfers

Gallery for Camino Frances Final Stage: Sarria to Santiago

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Reviews for Camino Frances Final Stage: Sarria to Santiago

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Camino Frances Final Stage: Sarria to Santiago
Average rating:  
 2 reviews
by Janice W on Camino Frances Final Stage: Sarria to Santiago

Maria was very helpful every step of the way and always answered my questions promptly. Excellent company, organised well. Stayed at some lovely places. Will book again. Many thanks!

by Liz K on Camino Frances Final Stage: Sarria to Santiago




[THE MOST MEMORABLE PART OF THE HOLIDAY WAS] MEETING OTHER PILGRIMS AND THE EXTRAORDINARY KINDNESS OF THE PORTUGUESE PEOPLE. AS A SOLO TRAVELLER, IT CAN BE A BIT LONELY TO STAY IN HOTELS. BETTER TO DO THIS WITH A FRIEND. I WOULD LOVE AN OPTION WHERE YOU COULD CHOOSE TO STAY IN PRIVATE HOSTELS OR PRIVATE HOMES, RATHER THAN IN SUCH FANCY HOTELS. IT WAS KINDOF ISOLATING.

Rate (on a scale 1 to 5, 5 for excellent, 1 for poor):
- the booking process and our customer service 5
- the info pack 4.5. I WOULD APPRECIATE A BIT MORE INFO ON THE MAJOR LANDMARKS - SOME WERE ENTIRELY ABSENT.
- our local representative 5
- the trails and waymarking 5
- the smartphone app / GPS tracks DIDN’T USE
- the accommodations 5. FAVORITE: QUINTA IN ARCOS. LEAST FAVORITE: HOTEL IMPERIO DE NORTE IN BARCELOS. I AM GRATEFUL THAT ALL WERE RIGHT ON OR VERY NEAR THE CAMINO SANTIAGO
-holiday overall 4.9

Dear Liz,Thank you for your feedback and I am glad you enjoyed your holiday overall! Most of our clients choose our itinerary because of the better accommodation compared to dormitory rooms in the auberges, but I agree that this way you miss some of the local flavour. Regarding the materials, we will take your advice into consideration and add more info about local landmarks, places to see etc.

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