Saturday, 21 April 2018

Plans and changes for 2018

Our journey is still planned but with some minor variations as to the route.

We will visit Suances, Naves and Soto de Luiña as planned; then a Casa Rural near the Estacas de Bara before going to Mondoñedo; after that we head east to Pravia before going to Corao; then finally Ongayu which is not far from Suances as we return home.

Sea view - Suances

Monday, 5 February 2018

Walking in 2018

Planning is going well for walking a few sections of the Camino del Norte and also the Camino do Mar. This latter is the route from Ribadeo heading west towards Ferrol which we walked in 2015.

So far we expect to stay in Suances (off Camino); Naves (near LLanes); Soto de Luiña; Viveiro (Camino do Mar); Mondoñedo; then head east again to Carao (on the LLanes to Covadonga link) and finally the Picos de Europa on our way home.

Church of Nuestra Señora de los Dolores,
near Barro - Camino del Norte

Saturday, 16 December 2017

A record number of pilgrims in 2017

This year to date there have been 300,000 Compostela certificates issued in Santiago de Compostela.
These are to pilgrims who have walked at least the final 100kms on one of the many Camino routes into Santiago.
Personally we are glad that we walked when it was quieter. Although the increase in numbers is in many ways welcome for helping the economy of the region it does mean that there are greater crowds, particularly in Santiago itself.
We look forward to walking the quieter sections of the Norte and beyond next year without planning to reach Santiago itself.

Sunday, 23 July 2017

Mestas de Ardisana and Ardisana

Mestas de Ardisana has many narrow twisting streets and a number of differing types of hórreo. We spent time walking through the village looking at these as well as the houses themselves, crossing the stream on the stepping stones.

While in Posada de Rengas we had learnt that strictly speaking hórreos have a single spike and usually just 4 staddles, one at each corner. The larger stores are paneros with two spikes on the roof and 6, or occasionally 8, staddles. Both types have the access steps detached, to prevent rats entering the granary.

Our final trip in the area was to take the car up out of the valley to Ardisana itself and ride along the hilltop to look across at the views. There is a narrow road up from the valley which it would be possible to walk if time allowed.

Mestas village


Hórreo (left)

Panero (right)

Mountain views

near Ardisana

Wednesday, 19 July 2017

The Camino del Norte again - May 2017

We took a ride back up to the coast west of LLanes passing the church of Nuestra Señora de los Dolores, across the estuary. After lunch in Nueva we took a short walk along the Camino. Then we went on by car to the church San Pedro de Pria. Here we saw some pilgrims walking the road uphill to reach the church from the rear, adding about 2kms to their walk. The Camino is well marked across the fields with access points through the wire fencing. The albergue has the phone number on the door and the Camino passes below it and the church to continue at the far side.

Church of Nuestra Señora de los Dolores

Camino in Nueva

The road behind San Pedro de Pria

The track up the field to the church

San Pedro de Pria

The albergue

Tuesday, 18 July 2017

Mestas de Ardisana

From Mestas we walked the route signed uphill towards Teyeu.This walk is along part of the old Roman road and the route through from LLanes to Covadonga. It started along the river side and then along the road with views of the mountains. Passing through the village of Teyeu it continued along the road which then became a good track. The track was crossed by a stream which was passable, but in wet weather could be a problem. We continued along the track until we reached a small farm where time meant we needed to turn back.

Puerto de Pajaro

We took a ride through Campomanes and on up to Puerto de Pajaro, where the Camino de Salvador reaches its highest point (1378mts). The track passes through the field with the cows and the yellow arrows appear to be double-headed here. One way passes through the barrier to the very steep descent parallel to the road. Much steeper than we would want to try, but it was well worth the visit for the views. On the ride back down we stopped just outside Campomanes for a very good menu del dia before returning to the hotel.

Tuesday, 11 July 2017

Santa Cristina de Lena

After the heat and thunderstorm of the afternoon the next morning was good for walking again. The upper track to the church starts 200mts downhill from the Hotel Santa Cristina, and turns uphill again before levelling out for about 500mts. The church opens at 11.00am and the lady came up the old track we had walked up yesterday.

Outside the church has a shell carving over one window and various carved window lattices. Inside photography is allowed but no flash. It is possible to go up the steps to the king's gallery to see down into the nave. The sanctuary is also up steps (entry forbidden) and the altar front is carved with various motifs.

For anyone walking the Camino de Salvador it is well worth making time to visit this lovely little pre-Romanesque church.

Tuesday, 4 July 2017

Pola de Lena

From Cangas del Narcea we moved on to Santa Cristina de Lena, staying at the hotel there, 200mts from the car park for the church path. On our first day we followed the yellow arrows to walk on the Camino de Salvador into Pola de Lena. We walked down from the hotel, past the little parking area to the bridge. Here we picked up the arrows which turned us up an ancient path. This went steeply uphill to pass the church of Santa Cristina and then down again to eventually cross the river before entering Pola de Lena. All the turns were very well marked, especially the river bridge.

After lunch we took a taxi rather than walking back as we intended to visit the church in the afternoon. However the heat made us change our minds so we drove instead to Puerto de Pajaro leaving the church for next morning.

Road below the hotel


Ancient path

View at the church

Church of Sta Cristina

Track down from the church

View from the track

River at the turn into Pola

Sunday, 2 July 2017


From Cangas del Narcea we took a trip round onto the Primitivo. Passing through Pola de Allande we followed the road to Campiello and stopped at Herminia's for coffee. We had seen her new cards at Grado and were very impressed by the new cafe-bar/shop etc. The old house and shop is closed and the new buildings are at the opposite side of the road. It was good to see Herminia again and to hear that she and her family are doing well.

Then we drove on to Tineo where we had lunch at the same restaurant we visited when walking before continuing on to Cangas del Narcea past the Parador at the Monsterio de Corias.

Casa Herminia
The old house
and the new

Photos from the car

The view near Tineo

Parador de Corias

Tuesday, 27 June 2017

Barrio Entrambasaguas

This is the oldest part of Cangas del Narcea and is slowly being restored. The church was having the gutters repaired and was being repainted when we walked past. Other houses too had been repaired and repainted even in the last year, and the old mill had been partially re-roofed. The streets are cobbled and traffic is not allowed over the bridge. There is then a fairly steep climb up past other old buildings (many of which still need repair) into the centre of Cangas del Narcea itself.

Houses in Entrambasaguas

Capilla del Carmen

The bridge

Restored house
after the bridge