- Follow in the footsteps of millions of pilgrims and over 1,000 years of history on the world’s greatest historical trail
- More than half of your walk is along the ancient Camino Primitivo – the original Camino trail from over 1000 years ago
- Walk the final 100km of the Camino Trail and qualify for your Compostela
- Santiago – finish in this historic city and visit the final end point of your walk at the Cathedral
- Self-guided trip allows you to set your own pace while we look after your accommodation and luggage transfers
- Dedicated local support person in Spain for reassurance
Walk a section of the world famous Camino De Santiago with your first two days of walking being along the Camino Primitivo – the original path followed by pilgrim back in the early days of the Camino, more than 1000 years ago.
Starting in Lugo marvel at Spain’s only Roman-walled city then enjoy two days of very quiet trails before joining the Camino Frances which is now the main route used by most modern Pilgrims.
Following scenic country roads and forest tracks crossing old villages and cities born from the Camino trail, it is difficult to imagine a better way to enjoy Spain’s rich legacy of history, culture, food and art than to follow your own Camino. Join people from all walks and life and nationalities as they embark on this great adventure, you don’t have to be religious just a keen walker!
Extend Your Holiday – City Breaks
Double your holiday experience by including a stopover on your journey! A city break is a great way to explore another place, indulge in some extra shopping, dining or sightseeing and is a great way to break up a long flight. Our fabulous array of RAW Travel city breaks can be tailor made to your requirements and usually include an arrival transfer, 2 nights accommodation and a city sightseeing tour.
Are you a first-time or solo traveller?
We’ll support you all the way! View our preparation and training resources.
Day 1: Arrive in Lugo
Welcome to Lugo, the starting point for your exciting journey! If you arrive in the morning on this first day you can spend exploring the city of Lugo and all it has to offer.
Lugo, located on a hill on the banks of the river Miño, preserves major remains of its Roman past, among them its ancient wall, declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. Inside the walls, the city conserves quiet pedestrian streets, wide squares and spacious gardens, where buildings such as the Cathedral, the Archiepiscopal Palace, and the City Hall stand out. The historic quarter also houses some of the best restaurants in Galicia, where it is possible to sample the excellent fresh meats and fish which have earned Lugo’s gastronomy recognized acclaim. Many bars in town will serve free tapas, when you order a drink. Apart from culture and cuisine, one can breathe nature in Lugo. For hydrotherapy lovers, at the foot of the river Miño you will find the historic spa, where the remains of the ancient roman baths can be visited.
Day 2: Walk Lugo to Ferreira (26km)
Leave Lugo by the oldest gate in the wall, down to the roman bridge, which spans the Miño River. Moving further away from Lugo, we come to San Vicente do Burgo, where there was once a pilgrim hospital. This section of the stage offers striking panoramic views of the city receding in the distance. The route continues through San Pedro de Mera and San Romao da Retorta that offers delightful examples of the Romanesque style. and where there is a Roman milestone – evidence that the Primitive Route follows the path of an ancient road. From here onwards, the trail follows ancient paths that are still much in use and connect an endless of small rural villages.
In Ferreira, apart from the medieval bridge, there is also a Romanesque church dating from the late 12th century, which was part of Vilar de Donas.
Day 3: Walk Ferreira to Melide (28km)
The walks today takes you through beautiful farmland and forest, passing small villages and crossing lovely arched stone bridges.
The route continues on to Augas Santas with its curative springs, As Seixas, and the border between the provinces of Lugo and A Coruña. Cross the Careón Mountains, an area of great ecological value where flora and fauna that have grown scarce in Galicia have been preserved. The highest peak, O Careón, rises to 798 m. Continue through Vilouriz to Vilamor.
The Primitive Route converges with the French Route at the historic town of Melide, a busy town founded in the 13th century which has many historic buildings and churches including the Capilla de San Pedro and San Roque next to which stands a 14th century stone cross said to be the oldest in Galicia. The museum and the buildings around the Plaza de Convento are well worth a visit. Melide is also famous for Pulpo Gallego, octopus cooked Galician style and reputed to be the best in Spain. From here you join the Camino Frances, now the most popular route to Santiago.
Day 4: Walk Melide to Arzua (14km)
From Melide you will notice the path is much busier, filled with pilgrims on the Camino Frances. The path winds through woodlands of oak, pine and eucalypt, passing over several valleys though Boente, Castañeda and then Ribadiso from where you can see the Hospital San Anton, one of the oldest pilgrim hospitals in existence. From Ribadiso follow the country road on a steep uphill climb and through the outer suburbs before entering Arzua.
Arzua with a population of around 7000 is the last large town before you reach Santiago. The 14th century Capilla de la Magdelena is the town’s main monument. Arzua is most famous for its local cheese, Queixo, a smooth creamy cheese made from cow’s milk which most restaurants feature in some way and is definitely worth trying. The town also celebrates its cheese with a Queixo Cheese festival every March.
Day 5: Walk Arzua to O Pedrouzo (19km)
The majority of today’s walk to O Pedrouzo is through wonderful pine and eucalyptus scented woodland. The path is mostly level, passing through three shallow river valleys with a gradual climb up to Alto de Santa Irene at 404m. The country lanes and woodland paths pass through many small hamlets. The final section climbs steeply to a main road, into eucalyptus woodland and onto A Rua and the village to O Pedrouzo. O Pedrouzo /Arco do Pino is a small but busy town with plenty of shops, restaurants and bars and the staging point for the last section of the Camino before entering Santiago de Compostela.
Day 6: Walk O’Pedrouzo to Santiago (20km)
Today’s route will be a busy as pilgrims begin the last stage of their walk into Santiago. The pilgrims mass at Santiago Cathedral begins at midday so you will need to leave early to arrive on time. The first section of today’s route passes through eucalypt forests with most of the route on quiet roads and pathways before the final kilometres and a climb to Mount Gozo before descending into the suburbs of Santiago. The path runs alongside the airport and you will see many crosses of twigs and branches used by pilgrims to decorate the fence.
Lavacolla village is where pilgrims traditionally washed to purify themselves before entering Santiago and Lavacolla literally means to wash your tail. At Monte Gozo, Mount of Joy, you will first sight the stunning Catedral de Santiago spires.
The final section is well signposted into the old quarter with its wonderful historical buildings and narrow shop filled alleyways, until you finally reach the Praza Obradoiro and the wonderful ancient Cathedral.
Day 7: Free day in Santiago
Today you have the whole day to enjoy and explore historic Santiago with its many enticing tapas bars and restaurants. You can attend the midday pilgrims mass and look around the famous Cathedral of St James which forms the city’s heart and watch the steady stream of pilgrims arriving into the square as they finish their epic journey.
Day 8: Depart Santiago
You are free to check out of your hotel any time before 10am. If you would like to explore Santiago further you are able to leave your bags with reception.
Self-guided trips offer flexibility, independence and choice. Set your own agenda while someone else worries about the logistics. Our self-guided walking holidays are fully flexible which means you can normally start your walk on any day during the season and customise by adding extra days for resting or sightseeing. As you’re walking independently, you’re free to follow the trail at your own pace. You set your own speed as you are not limited by the constraints of group travel.
Note that if booking for a trip that leaves in 30 days or less, please be aware we cannot guarantee that your departure will be possible unless we have confirmed this via email first.
- 7 nights excellent accommodation including historic hotels and character country houses.
- Private en suite rooms on a twin share basis
- Daily breakfast
- Luggage transfer each day from hotel to hotel (1 x 15kg bag per person)
- Full Camino guidebook with maps (one book per two people in twin/double share)
- Pilgrim’s passport per person
- Spanish phrase book (one book per two people in twin/double share)
- Document case
- Daily luggage tags
- Maps of your hotel locations
- Local and Australian emergency contact numbers
- Pre-trip Camino guidance and planning
- Dedicated local support person in Spain for reassurance
- Single supplement $350 extra
- Travel insurance
- Flights to/from Spain
For an extra indulgence, upgrade your hotel in Santiago to a Parador for only $135 per person/per night twin share, when booked 6 months in advance (subject to availability).
For an unforgettable birds-eye view of the city and the cathedral interior, add the Rooftop Cathedral Tour for $25 per person.
RAW Travel also offer tailor-made arrangements and can adapt this itinerary to suit your needs – just ask us about this and we can advise on how to best vary the itinerary to suit your needs. Please note that tailor-made arrangements incur higher costs due to the extra work involved.
Map & Guide
Lynn James, Cronulla (NSW) – August 2018
The accommodation was superb and the transfer of baggage went without a hitch – it was always waiting for us at the end of the day.