Day 17 – Arzua to Santiago

Waking up the following morning, we found that our bikes were still locked in the enclosed outhouse so we had to wait until 8.00 before we could get back on the road. Although we would often start off before having had anything to eat, this morning breakfast before leaving seemed like the best solution. SpeciallyContinue reading “Day 17 – Arzua to Santiago”

Day 16 – Portomarin to Arzua

Now the route was becoming pretty crowded the closer to Santiago we got. As we only had 98 kilometers (60 miles) to go before reaching Santiago, this was hardly surprising. The current distance required for a pilgrim to achieve a Compostela is 100 km for walkers, 100 km for those on horseback, and 200 kmContinue reading “Day 16 – Portomarin to Arzua”

Day 15 – Alto do Poio to Portomarin

We had learned to respect the weather in Spain which can change very rapidly and the marked difference between the early morning temperature and that later in the day was striking. Having already ridden in excess of 650 kilometers (404 miles) from our original starting point at Bayenne – we had experienced bitter temperatures (theContinue reading “Day 15 – Alto do Poio to Portomarin”

Day 13 – Santa Catalina de Somoza to Ponferrada

For some time now, we had been slowly climbing, having left the Mesita behind. However, this morning we found the terrain much steeper, and we made a slow pace until we reached Rabanal de Camino. We had to stop here because the albergue has direct links with the Confraternity of St James back in theContinue reading “Day 13 – Santa Catalina de Somoza to Ponferrada”

Day 12 – Leon to Santa Catalina de Somoza

The following morning, we left the monastery while it was still quite dark and rode through sleepy streets to find somewhere we could have a spot of breakfast. We eventually came across a café near the river bank which had just opened, so we were their first customers of the day. We ordered croissants andContinue reading “Day 12 – Leon to Santa Catalina de Somoza”

Day 10 – Fromista to Sahagon

After a blissfully quiet night’s sleep, we set off, riding on an almost traffic free P980, and still running parallel to the walking path. Still on the Meseta the roads were again flattish with precious little between the small villages that dotted this area. Many of them seemed to be almost deserted and certainly noContinue reading “Day 10 – Fromista to Sahagon”

Day 8 – San Juan de Ortega to Burgos

We had managed more than a week’s riding. I couldn’t believe it. When we were both younger, we’d joined our local cycling group in Oxford, England. Apart from the Sunday rides, we’d occasionally head for mainland Europe, in particular France. We have fond memories, but these holidays were never more than seven day’s at aContinue reading “Day 8 – San Juan de Ortega to Burgos”

Day 7 – Azofra to San Juan de Ortega

Fortunately, a good night’s rest meant that John’s sore toe was slowly healing, helped no doubt, by the cream that we had brought along for such emergencies. And the voltarol was beginning to work on my tired leg muscles. After the previous day’s traumas we were wary of following the trail again. So we waitedContinue reading “Day 7 – Azofra to San Juan de Ortega”

Day 5 – Estella to Logrono

After a hasty breakfast, and before leaving the albergue behind, we spoke to a young family who had begun their Camino at Roncesvalles. The mother and father were carrying most of the gear as their young daughter and even younger, rather disgruntled, son were both finding the trail difficult. I couldn’t help wondering if theyContinue reading “Day 5 – Estella to Logrono”

Day 4 – Cizur Menor to Estella

The moment we left Cizur Menor behind, fortified by a good breakfast and a welcome night’s sleep, we started to climb. We were on the NA6000, a tarmacked road that had seen better days, but at least it was very quiet, as we followed it through farming countryside. To our left, some distance away, weContinue reading “Day 4 – Cizur Menor to Estella”

Day 3 – Roncesvalles to Cizur Menor

Another early start. Although many of the walking pilgrims had already set off, we waited until it was light enough to ride before leaving the albergue behind. It was foggy and surprisingly cold, although after a few hours the fog cleared. John began to complain, which he put down to the water from the streamContinue reading “Day 3 – Roncesvalles to Cizur Menor”

Setting out – from Home to Bayonne, France

Early on the morning of July 5 the wind was a south easterly, which meant that we would have it behind us literally all the way to Milton Keynes where we would stay overnight before boarding the European Bike Express. This coach operates between the UK and France in the summer months, and is aContinue reading “Setting out – from Home to Bayonne, France”