Today we depart Newark Airport for our overseas flight to Portugal. Dinner and breakfast will be served on board.
Today you will be greeted by our Tour Escort and tranfered by airconditioned motorcoach to our hotel. You will be staying the next couple nights in a modern 3* hotel in the town center of the monumental City of Tui. Tui is a walled cathedral from which in Medieval time emanated cultural, economic and military life, just on the Spanish side of the border with Portugal. If your time of arrival allows and before your first dinner with us in your hotel, visit Valença do Minho on the other side of the Portuguese border about a 3h walk return. This impressive 13th century fortress with stunning views onto the whole region will help you understand the huge battles that took place between Spain, Portugal and France in the region for control of the strategic River Miño and the visit will allow you to cross a very photogenic bridge between the two country.
Finally, the day you start your pilgrimage on the Portuguese Way starting from the beautiful town of Tui. This area has been occupied since the Lower Paleolithic and has been a strategic defense point since the 6th century. So, before you leave, take your time to marvel at the old town architecture and visit the Cathedral to get your first Camino stamp. Today's walk is easy, mostly downhill all the way to O Porriño. The first kilometers will be exiting Tui through an old village. Half way to O Porriño, make sure you follow the new “Camino Natural” signs which will bring you through forests and joins a pretty riverbank, instead of the old alternative route that goes through an industrial area (even if recommended by locals). After the walk, give our driver a call to drive you back in 15min to Tui for another night in the same hotel as the night before.
As you continue your adventure slightly uphill through peaceful forest paths, you will pass by some of the most interesting examples of Galician architecture: the church of Santa Eulalia del Monte and the Pazo de los Marquess in the parish of Mos. Enjoy on your left, beautiful views onto the City of Vigo, its bay, the Rías Baias and the Cies Islands (known for having some of the best beaches in the world). After a few hours walk, you will reach Redondela. If you still have time and energy, go for a walk along the boardwalk to see the end of one of the Rías Baixas. Your hotel for the night is another 3 km along the Camino de Santiago and has stunning views onto the Ría de Vigo and the Island of San Simon. You can decide to walk to the hotel along the Camino or ask for a pick up from Redondela.
Today, expect two sceneries: half the day will Bay and the second part will be downhill through peaceful oak forests. You will pass the infamous bridge of Ponte Sampaio, where during the War of Independence, Napoleon's army suffered one of its greatest defeats and cross several quaint medieval villages. You are heading to the a 3* hotel in the center of the old town of Pontevedra, the Roman built city which has been dedicated to the Virgen Peregrina (the Pilgrim Virgin). In the afternoon, and before dinner in your hotel, take a walk through the well-preserved old quarter of Pontevedra, most of which has been pedestrianized, and visit Santa María la Mayor Basilica, a jewel of Gothic Renaissance architecture, and La Virgen Peregrina Church, a chapel with a scallop-shaped floor plan and beautiful night lighting.
Today's stage is one of the most beautiful of the Portuguese Way. You will walk through vineyards, small rural hermitage, chestnut groves and eucalyptus forests. About 8 km before Caldas de Reis, your destination for the day, make a 500m detour to see Muiñada De Barosa, a beautiful natural enclave with waterfalls and a lovely restaurant. Your hotel tonight is right in the town center by the river and near the roman baths. To reward you for walking so far, tonight you will get a complimentary thermal bath in the hotel spa (don't forget your swimsuit and cap).
Today, the path enters the beautiful Bermaña Valley and its centennial forests towards the emblematic town of Padrón, where according to legends, the stone boat containing the remains of the Apostle moored. Padrón is also famous for their mild green peppers that are sold all over Spain as Pimentos de Padrón and for its Sunday Market. You will stay in a hotel in the town center whose restaurant attracts customers from Santiago de Compostela.
This is it! Only 24 km separates you from your goal: the resting place of the Apostle Saint James in the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela. The Camino will bring you through charming villages and hamlets as well as the Baroque sanctuary of An Esclavitude. You will get to walk by the mysterious, abandoned ruins on the hill-fort of Castro Lupario, of the castle A Rocha Vella and the Chapel of San Martiño were one of the most ancient Cruceiros of Galicia stands. Then, finally, from the hills of Agro dos Monteiros, you will get our first glimpse of Santiago de Compostela and start walking into the city of the Apostle. This day can be cut in two to let you stay in a beautiful Galician Manor near Faramelo or you can make it straight to Santiago. As you enter the town a couple routes are offered to you, we recommend following the River Sarela instead of entering through the new town. Soon enough you will reach the Plaza del Obradoiro, where the Cathedral will present itself to you, majestic and beautiful. Stop here for a while and breath in this moment, do whatever feels right. You still have a few things to do today, after your check-in at your hotel just a couple minutes' walk away - get your pilgrim certificate, attend Pilgrim Mass, enjoy a farewell dinner at & marvel at the architecture of our beloved City.
After breakfast transfer to airport for our return flight home. A wise pilgrim once told us “the real Camino starts where the Camino de Santiago finishes, but I will not be afraid because the Camino will always be there for me.” We hope the Camino has brought you whatever you were looking for and wish to see you again soon in Galicia!
Early Booking Discount:
$100 discount with deposit by July 5, 2020
or $50 discount with deposit by January 5, 2021
• Round trip air from Newark Airport
• 7 nights in ensuite accommodations in 3 to 4 star hotels on the Camino
• A Pilgrim Kit per person including an official Pilgrim Passport (Credential), a waterproof zip bag, a scallop shell, poncho, a sweet, luggage tags & detailed John Briely guidebook
• Luggage transfers from hotel to hotel
• 7 early morning and extended breakfasts and 7 three course dinners. The included dinners are excellent including local wine, beer and water. (may be buffet for larger groups)
• Daily Mass
• Farewell dinner
• Transfers to and from the Camino and hotels if they are not directly on the Camino and accessible by foot
• Emergency support from our local team
• Transfers to airport
• All taxes and gratuities for hotel
• Tour guide
• Single Room - $325
• Travel Insurance
Fr. Mino • 768 Ocean Avenue • Jersey City, NJ 07304
Cell: 201-303-3960 • email@example.com
Fern Ciraolo • Regina Tours
1-800-CATHOLIC ext 232 • 1-800-228-4654 ext 232
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