Walk the last 100 km (the minimum required to earn your Compostela) of the French Way from Saria to Santiago de Compostela in nine walking days at a leisurely pace and take your time to explore the beautiful villages along the route, the local culture and the Galician cuisine.
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 (not included) 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 Sarria
Day 2: Sarria to Morgade
Setting off to Morgade, you pass Sarria Castle, walking mainly along small country roads and forest tracks.
- Walking for the day: 12 km, 3 hours
- Overnight Morgade
Day 3: Morgade to Portomarín
Another easy walking day, taking you from Morgade to the town of Portomarín. Along the way, you will spot many Galician traditional hórreos (granaries).
- Walking for the day: 12 km, 3 hours
- Overnight Portomarín
Day 4: Portomarín to Ventas de Narón
Today you will walk from Portomarín to the hamlet of Ventas de Narón. The Camino crosses the river Miño (Galicia’s longest river) and rises uphill steadily towards the beautiful Serra de Ligonde.
- Walking for the day: 13 km, 3-4 hours
- Overnight Ventas de Narón
Day 5: Ventas de Narón to Palas de Rei
Today you will take an easy walk from Ventas de Narón to the market town of Palas de Rei.
- Walking for the day: 12 km, 2-3 hours
- Overnight Palas de Rei
Day 6: Palas de Rei to Melide
The Camino trail continues downhill, passing the village of Casanova and the delightful village of Leboreiro. Once you arrive in Melide, you should try octopus, Galicia’s most classic dish, in one of the town’s pulperías. Melide is where the Camino Primitivo merges with the Camino Frances.
- Walking for the day: 14 km, 3-4 hours
- Overnight Melide
Day 7: Melide to Arzúa
Much of the day is shaded and shortly after Melide, you will walk through oak and eucalyptus forests. The Camino crosses several streams and follows a forest track bringing you to the village of Boente and the church of Santiago. Next is the pretty medieval hamlet of Ribadiso and finally the town of Arzúa, famous for its local cheese where you should visit the churches of Santa María and A Magdalena.
- Walking for the day: 14 km, 3-4 hours
- Overnight Arzúa
Day 8: Arzúa to Rúa-Pedrouzo
Today you will take a bit longer walk from Arzúa to the hamlet of Rúa-Pedrouzo along easy forest tracks and country roads.
- Walking for the day: 19 km, 4-5 hours
- Overnight Rúa-Pedrouzo
Day 9: Rúa-Pedrouzo to Lavacolla
Today you will take walk along a mix of well-marked country roads and forest tracks from the quiet hamlet of Rúa-Pedrouzo to Lavacolla – the traditional last stop before Santiago, where pilgrims in older days would wash their feet in the river in preparation for their arrival in Santiago de Compostela.
- Walking for the day: 10 km, 2 hours
- Overnight Lavacolla
Day 10: Lavacolla to Santiago de Compostela
Your final stage! Rows of tall eucalyptus trees line your journey to Monte do Gozo and it is from here that you will catch your first glimpse of the spires of the cathedral in Santiago. When you arrive in the city, explore this UNESCO World Heritage Site’s architecture and delight in the wonderful atmosphere of this spiritual and cultural city.
With only 10 km to walk today, you should be in Santiago in time for the pilgrim mass (12 pm). After visiting Santiago Cathedral and recovering from your walk, take time to explore this gem of a city, small and vibrant. Its old town will enchant you. In Santiago the Compostela you will find not only pilgrims but also locals and students, enjoying a few bites and socialising over a glass of wine in the many bars, restaurants and cosy cafes.
- Walking for the day: 10 km, 2 hours
- Overnight Santiago de Compostela
Day 11: Departure
Enjoy a leisurely breakfast before heading back to the airport. We highly recommend booking additional nights in Santiago de Compostela to explore this fantastic city.
Accommodations on this tour include a mix of welcoming country inns and comfortable 3-star hotels, located close to the route of the Camino. You will always have a private room and en-suite (attached) bathroom. In the larger cities, you will stay in larger 3-star hotels; the other nights will be in a mixture of rural hotels and inns, all with private rooms and en-suite bathrooms. They have been carefully selected for their location, atmosphere and/or unique services. Below you can see some samples, but please note that the Camino is a very popular destination and the hotels in your final booking confirmation may be different from the ones pictured below. Extra nights can be booked at any of the accommodations along the way.
*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.
Breakfast is included (usually buffet breakfast/coffee and toast/bread/croissant) on all days. 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.
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.
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.
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 to offer you adequate cover at a great value from a reputable insurer, and it takes only a few minutes to buy online.
Up-to-date travel advice on Spain is available here.
Difficulty Grade: Easy to Moderate
This itinerary is relaxed version of our standard 8-day programme and includes walks of 10-12 km per day on average (the longest one is 19 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.
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 all year round, but the 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 walking holidays means that there are no fixed dates and you can start your trip on any date during the season.
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)
- 10 nights in nice hotels in private en-suite rooms (mostly 3-star)
- 10 breakfasts
- Detailed journey documentation and practical information (roadbook, destination manual), all provided in digital formats prior to the departure date
- Luggage transfers from hotel to hotel on all walking days (up to 20 kg per person)
- 24/7 phone assistance by our local office/representative
- 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
- Flights and airport transfers
- Travel insurance
- All lunches and 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