Camino Francés Stage 4

The medieval town of Astorga is an important crossroads on the Camino – the Camino Francés and the Ruta de la Plata meet here.Don’t miss the Episcopal Palace, designed by Gaudi now home to the Museo de los Caminos.This walk will take you through the pretty town of Molinaseca; Ponferrada, built by the Templars in the 12th century; the green pastures of the Vall de Valcarce with the stunning climb up to O’Cebreiro and past the “pallozas” – ancient Celtic thatched houses – before reaching the bustling market town of Sarria.

Highlights

  • The Gaudi designed Episcopal Palace in Astorga
  • The interesting and varied countryside
  • The quaint village of O’Cebreiro with its restored pallozas
  • The camaraderie of fellow walkers
  • Excellent local food and wine

What is Included

  • Return flights Dublin Santiago (This tour is based on a specific airfare – a surcharge may apply if the fare is unavailable at time of booking)
  • 8 nights accommodation on a bed & breakfast basis
  • Luggage transfers throughout while walking (maximum 2 bags - one large/one small – per person)
  • Services of local English-speaking agent (emergencies only!)


What is Not Included

  • Single room supplement €215.00 for the duration of the stay
  • Travel insurance €38.00 (+66 years double premium applies)
  • Checked in bag max 15 kg €70.00 currently
  • Private transfer Santiago/Astorga and Sarria/Santiago airport €320.00 per person (transfer rates based on a minimum of 2 people)
  • Pilgrim passport €12.00


Itinerary Details

Day 1: Astorga

Dublin to Santiago and private transfer (optional) to Astorga.

Day 2: Astorga - Rabanal (20.2 km)

You are now heading into the mountains where it will be mostly uphill and through an area known as the Maragateria where the locals have their own very distinctive customs, traditions and music.

Day 3: Rabanal - Molinaseca (24.8 km)

The first part of this stage is uphill climbing past the iconic Cruz de Ferro or the Iron Cross a popular stop for photos.Some pilgrims bring a rock or stone from home to leave on the existing pile here – it symbolises leaving a burden behind.Continue past Irago, the highest point on the French Way at 1,515m before the long decent to the lovely mountain village of Molinesca with its Romanesque bridge over the River Meruelo.

Day 4: Molinaseca - Cacabelos (23 km)

Today the Camino goes through the wine region of Bierzo and passes the ruins of the Templar Castle and through Ponteferrado, an attractive medieval city and the last of the bigger cities on the way to Santiago de Compostela.You will pass through a number of small villages quite close to each other before reaching the larger town of Cacabelos which has an interesting Archaeological Museum.

Day 5: Cacabelos to Ambasmestas (22.4 km)

You will pass through the villages of Pieros and Valtuille de Arriba before reaching the delightful town of Villafranca del Bierzo.It has an impressive 12th century church.

Day 6: Ambasmestas - O Cebreiro (13.4 km)

This is a quite a difficult stage with the last part involving a 600m ascent which starts after the village of Las Herreias de Valcarce to O Cebreiro. There are some very small villages along the way. The climb through a chestnut woodland on a rocky path takes you to the picturesque village of O Cebreiro – you are now in Galicia.

Day 7: O Cebreiro - Tricastela (20.8 km)

You now start to descend from the mountains passing through several small villages and even smaller hamlets before reaching the town of Triacastela – the town of three castles.

Day 8: Tricastela to Sarria (24.4 km)

You have the option today of taking the longer (6.5 km), flatter and very scenic route through Samos or the short one with a 200m climb bypassing Samos.Samos was traditionally an important stop on the Camino with a monastery dating back to the 6th century.Samos is just 15 km from the bustling market town of Sarria.

Day 9:

Private transfer (optional) from Sarria to Santiago Airport for your return flight to Dublin.

Accommodation

Your accommodation will be in 2/3* hotels/pensions while walking. Your en suite room will be simple, basic and clean. Facilities generally consist of a reception area and a breakfast room. Some have restaurant facilities. Breakfast is usually of the continental variety - coffee and croissants – anything else is bonus! As we use a wide range of accommodations in the various overnight locations you will be advised of names of all accommodation with your travel documents.

Proposed Flights

Carrier

From / To

Departure Time

Arrival Time

Aer Lingus

Dublin / Santiago

13.10 hrs.

16.20 hrs.

Aer Lingus

Santiago /Dublin

11.15 hrs.

12.25 hrs.

Dates & Prices

Start Date

End Date

Price PPS

Sat 18 May 2019

Sun 26 May 2019

€850.00

Sat 01 Jun

Sun 09 Jun

€945.00

Sat 15 Jun

Sun 23 Jun

€945.00

Sat 06 Jul

Sun 14 Jul

€945.00

Sat 13 Jul

Sun 21 Jul

€945.00

Sat 03 Aug

Sun 11 Aug

€945.00

Sat 17 Aug

Sun 25 Aug

€945.00

Sat 07 Sep

Sun 15 Sep

€945.00

Sat 21 Sep

Sun 29 Sep

€945.00


Other departures can be organized on request from May to September

Important Information

  • Walking grade: Moderate
  • Walking each day: you are “independent” which means you have maximum flexibility – set off walking in the morning whenever you are ready, walk at your own pace, choose when and where to stop for lunch en route and plan the day around your own agenda. You simply leave your packed luggage at reception and it will be awaiting you on arrival in your next accommodation!
  • If you cannot continue walking? – have no worries, public transport and/or taxis are available. Simply call our local partner in Spain who will be happy to assist – he speaks fluent English!
  • We can tailor-make your Camino to suit your personal preferences – pick your own dates, decide how many days walking you would like and even add in rest days along the way.

How to reserve a place(s): a completed booking form with deposit of €250.00 (+ cost of insurance if required) per person - payment by cash/cheque/debit or credit card - should be sent directly to MAP Travel. The balance will be due 10 weeks prior to departure - payment by cash/cheque or debit card only