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1st stage out of Porto

Camino(s) past & future
Portuguese in September 18
#1
Hi everyone I'm starting from Porto on Wednesday I'm just wondering does anyone have any feed back on the Porto to villarhino stage. Is it really built up and industrial? I've read the cobblestones and concrete make it tough ...Also read that it's nicer to take the coastal route out of Porto but does this join up with the central within the first day?

Apart from this I'm ready. Pack is 7kg...So I'm working at shaving a bit of that off and have decided to take sleeping bag and no liner.

Exciting times
 

Pieces

Veteran Member
#2
I walked the first bit also (inland route) Yes the beginning is through town and industrial bits, but thet is where the camino is so I walked it. I did find that people were exceptionally kind and gave me small gifts and things to bring to Santiago on this first bit, maybe because most take the bus so I was sort of a rarity :D

I walked the all the way to Santiago with a displaced ankle so all stages were hellish painwise, I do not remember this as being more than the rest. Took me a few days to meet the first people though but I think now there is more traffic...
 
Camino(s) past & future
Norte/primitivo (15)
#3
Hi everyone I'm starting from Porto on Wednesday I'm just wondering does anyone have any feed back on the Porto to villarhino stage. Is it really built up and industrial? I've read the cobblestones and concrete make it tough ...Also read that it's nicer to take the coastal route out of Porto but does this join up with the central within the first day?

Apart from this I'm ready. Pack is 7kg...So I'm working at shaving a bit of that off and have decided to take sleeping bag and no liner.

Exciting times
From the airport we took the train to povoa de varzim. When we returned we stayed at a hotel near the airport so we decided to walk some to see what we missed. Taking the train was the right decision for us.
 
#5
The long walk out of Porto is tiresome walking, especially once you are out of the historical district and the buildings around you become less interesting. That said, it is nothing overly onerous – just less than ideal. For most people who are starting their Camino in Porto, high spirits that go with the first day of their walk generally overcomes any negatives associated with the long roadside walk out of the city.

Personally, I much prefer following the river out of the city and then going up the coast, switching back to the Central from Vila do Conde (joining at Rates). Note, though, that the road from Vila do Conde to Rates is often fast-moving and many pilgrims have told me they don't like walking alongside it.

Best wishes regardless of which way you go. Have a great Camino!
 

gittiharre

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF Austria Czech Le Puy Geneva RLS V. Jacobi V. Regia V. Baltica/Scandinavica Porto Muxia
#6
I recommend walking out of Porto along the river and up the coast staying at Angeiras campsite in a cabin the first night and having dinner in one of the many little fish restaurants in the authentic old little port on the beach. Then on to Vila do Conde, nice new albergue and nice little town. Then head inland from there.
 

Walking Lover

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
CdS from Leon to Santiago, June 16, 2016 to June 30, 2016.
#7
Hi everyone I'm starting from Porto on Wednesday I'm just wondering does anyone have any feed back on the Porto to villarhino stage. Is it really built up and industrial? I've read the cobblestones and concrete make it tough ...Also read that it's nicer to take the coastal route out of Porto but does this join up with the central within the first day?

Apart from this I'm ready. Pack is 7kg...So I'm working at shaving a bit of that off and have decided to take sleeping bag and no liner.

Exciting times
Absolutely, take the Coastal.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (1989 and 2016), Portugues - central from Porto (2018 - planned)
#9
Interior...case da Fernanda...not to be missed!
Technically, Casa sa Fernanda is on the Central not the Interior, which is a route even further east.

There seem to be four routes north from Porto. From west to east they are:
- the Litoral which is right along the coast
- the Coastal which is a bit central but regularly connects to the coast and the Litoral
- the Central which is between the Coastal and the Interior the most traditional and popular (although the Coastal is catching up)
- the Interior, which is even further east and, I believe has the least pilgrim traffic (such that most of the guide books don't cover it, though they may acknowledge it).

A lot of people recommend walking along the coast as one leaves Porto, but what they are really recommending is walking on the Litoral. The "Coastal" route, at least as the guidebook shows it, heads north and not immediately along the coast. It joins the Litoral at Vila do Conde. At the same time, you can leave the Litoral/Coastal at Vila do Conde and join the Central at Arcos.

That last is what you'd do if you want to start with a nice walk along the coast and then head inland for Casa da Fernanda. It is what I'm doing. :)

The Interior is a whole other kettle of fish.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Portuguese Coastal Route(2016), Del Norte (2017) Camino Portuguese Litoral Senda (2018)
#11
I liked the litoral as a first stage so much that I took it all the way.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Leon to Santiago Oct 2016
Porto to Santiago Oct 2017
#12
I wondered what to do about this too. As I packed up my first morning I decided that I was there to walk, so started walking.
I am so glad that I did.
I enjoyed seeing a bit of local town life and met a fellow pilgrim whom I walked with often after that.
It is well marked with many good cafes.
Also I did feel it helped my transition from busy city mode to country, almost as if I earned it by walking through it.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Frances*3, Ingles, Primitive, Finisterre and now Portuguese
#13
I walked this stage in July. It is REALLY tedious until the river just past Vilarinho. At the river, the Caminho totally transforms and becomes magical. We didn't stay in Vilarinho but walked on to the absolutely lovely village of Arcos. The Caminho from then on was beautiful. Arcos is a great halt.
 

long trails

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances June 2016
Portugues April 2017
#14
Be aware of drivers in Portugal. They are some of the craziest on the planet. Even walking through the narrow, cobbled streets of a village I was almost run over by someone probably doing over 60kph.

I really enjoyed the PT camino except for this reason. I have just completed a few weeks campervanning around PT and my feelings about the local drivers have not changed.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Portuguese in September 18
#16
In the end I got the train to Maia forum outside of Porto and walked to vairo avoiding most of the industrial estate. It was a nice stage which improved the further you went nice little villages and I really loved staying at the monastery. As for the central route I found it to be absolutely stunning....I was so overwhelmed by the beauty of the countryside an unforgettable trip
 

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