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2nd time on Camino Portuguese this summer: need advice!

Bernard000

New Member
Time of past OR future Camino
many!
Bom dia dear pilgrims,

I plan on returning to Portugal this summer, after walking the Salvador + Primitivo. I have a few questions:

- What is the easiest way to get from SdC to Coimbra? I assume train to Tui, walk to Valença, and then train to Porto + Coimbra?
- 2 years ago, I did: Porto - SdC (via senda litoral + spiritual variant), SdC - Fisterra & Muxia - SdC - and then back to Porto, on foot, using the same route (senda litoral + spiritual). 31 days.

This year, I will start in Coimbra. A few questions:

- I assume the road from Coimbra to Porto is straightforward, and takes about 6 days?
- I am unsure what to do after Porto. I highly doubt I'll take the coastal again (Villa Cha, Esposende, Viana do Castelo). I have a friend who lives in Barcelos, I might go visit him. Or should I do Braga way? I am open to all ideas.
- Between Porto & Galicia, is it easy to 'switch' trails and go from inland to the coast, or vice versa?

Have an excellent day!
 
€2,-/day will present your project to thousands of visitors each day. All interested in the Camino de Santiago.
I found the bus was more convenient getting from SDC to Coimbra. If you take the SDC-Lisbon service, you don't change buses, but there is a break in Porto (at Campanha).

When I walked the CP in 2022, it took me six days from Coimbra to Porto. It is about 127 km, so that was just a bit over my target of 20 km/day. I could be walked in less.

I walked the Central route from Porto, so like you, I would probably look at another route. I have considered going through Braga, but won't have to firm that up for a while yet.

Swapping routes may not be all that easy. There are a couple of routes from Vila do Conde to Arcos. Brierley's guide shows one, and I think Wise Pilgrim shows a slightly different route. Otherwise, I don't recall there being other convenient routes from the Costal/Litoral across the the Central. Going the other way seems to have a better range of options. Occasionally, someone posts a very useful map of the many options that are available.
 
I found the bus was more convenient getting from SDC to Coimbra. If you take the SDC-Lisbon service, you don't change buses, but there is a break in Porto (at Campanha).

When I walked the CP in 2022, it took me six days from Coimbra to Porto. It is about 127 km, so that was just a bit over my target of 20 km/day. I could be walked in less.

I walked the Central route from Porto, so like you, I would probably look at another route. I have considered going through Braga, but won't have to firm that up for a while yet.

Swapping routes may not be all that easy. There are a couple of routes from Vila do Conde to Arcos. Brierley's guide shows one, and I think Wise Pilgrim shows a slightly different route. Otherwise, I don't recall there being other convenient routes from the Costal/Litoral across the the Central. Going the other way seems to have a better range of options. Occasionally, someone posts a very useful map of the many options that are available.
Thank you!
For the bus, do you know which company operates it, and around what the price is? I assume I can buy those a day before in Santiago?
 
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I travelled with ALSA, but there are others. I bought tickets online or there is a ticket counter at the bus station. There is also a ticket counter at the Pilgrim Office, but it wasn't open when I was there.
The earlier one books, the cheaper the ticket, and there are cheaper times to travel. Expect somewhere between 25€ and 45€.
 
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his year, I will start in Coimbra. A few questions:

- I assume the road from Coimbra to Porto is straightforward, and takes about 6 days?
- I am unsure what to do after Porto. I highly doubt I'll take the coastal again (Villa Cha, Esposende, Viana do Castelo). I have a friend who lives in Barcelos, I might go visit him. Or should I do Braga way? I am open to all ideas.
- Between Porto & Galicia, is it easy to 'switch' trails and go from inland to the coast, or vice versa?
I too think that taking the bus is the easiest way to go. I did it a few years back when I met my daughter in Porto after I finished a camino.
When it comes to route planning I would send a message to @jungleboy. He may see this post and respond without messaging. If you really want to get some detailed information I know he is the man to speak to. I doubt there are even a handful of people who know the routes in Portugal as well as he and his wife do.
 
I walked the CP September 2023. Stayed on the coastal route for a few days, up to Fao, and then we switched over the Central. We took a $22 Euro taxi from Fao to Barcelos because a few members of my group were pressed for time. Alternatively, I understand that there is an eco via cycling path that runs from Pavoa de Varzim (starts near the train station) over to Rates on the central route. The path is easy to follow, relatively flat and there are no cars.
 
€2,-/day will present your project to thousands of visitors each day. All interested in the Camino de Santiago.
When it comes to route planning I would send a message to @jungleboy. He may see this post and respond without messaging. If you really want to get some detailed information I know he is the man to speak to. I doubt there are even a handful of people who know the routes in Portugal as well as he and his wife do.
Thank you, you are too kind!

I saw this thread but was hesitant to jump into it because I didn’t love the Coimbra to Porto stretch (I much preferred Tomar-Coimbra). If @Bernard000 is set on starting in Coimbra, there is an alternative for the second half of the way from the Moinho Garcia albergue (the owner can give you all the details), which goes along the coast towards Porto rather than through the urban sprawl of the official route. In any case that albergue, while a detour off the camino, was one of our main highlights of this stretch, so it is well worth staying at.
 
Thank you, you are too kind!

I saw this thread but was hesitant to jump into it because I didn’t love the Coimbra to Porto stretch (I much preferred Tomar-Coimbra). If @Bernard000 is set on starting in Coimbra, there is an alternative for the second half of the way from the Moinho Garcia albergue (the owner can give you all the details), which goes along the coast towards Porto rather than through the urban sprawl of the official route. In any case that albergue, while a detour off the camino, was one of our main highlights of this stretch, so it is well worth staying at.
I can't argue with your assessment of the camino from Coimbra. But when I am asked I never tell people this because I fell in love with Coimbra when I walked from Lisbon. I think it is such a special place. We stayed two nights there. One evening I went out on my own and got completely lost. I didn't have my cell phone either. I ran into about 10 of the university students and asked directions. Instead of just directions we stood and talked and then they walked with me all the way back to my albergue. We had a wonderful conversation about life and how different their lives are facing graduation and the world from when I graduated 42 years earlier. This and a few other experiences plus how wonderful and liveable that city seems puts it at the top of the list for me in Portugal. Not too kind at all just speaking the truth about you and my respect for you and your wife and your generosity in imparting your knowledge.
 
set on starting in Coimbra, there is an alternative for the second half of the way from the Moinho Garcia albergue (the owner can give you all the details), which goes along the coast towards Porto rather than through the urban sprawl of the official route. In any case that albergue, while a detour off the camino, was one of our main highlights of this stretch, so it is well worth staying at.

The reason I'm starting in Coimbra is because I wanted to re-walk the Portuguese and walk a different way to Santiago. Also, with the number of days I had, I figured I could add 6 days more, so I figured Coimbra. In any case, I can't find anything about the Moinho Garcia albergue, is there a website you could share?

Thanks for your precious information!!!
 
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In any case, I can't find anything about the Moinho Garcia albergue, is there a website you could share?
 
Bom dia dear pilgrims,

I plan on returning to Portugal this summer, after walking the Salvador + Primitivo. I have a few questions:

- What is the easiest way to get from SdC to Coimbra? I assume train to Tui, walk to Valença, and then train to Porto + Coimbra?
- 2 years ago, I did: Porto - SdC (via senda litoral + spiritual variant), SdC - Fisterra & Muxia - SdC - and then back to Porto, on foot, using the same route (senda litoral + spiritual). 31 days.

This year, I will start in Coimbra. A few questions:

- I assume the road from Coimbra to Porto is straightforward, and takes about 6 days?
- I am unsure what to do after Porto. I highly doubt I'll take the coastal again (Villa Cha, Esposende, Viana do Castelo). I have a friend who lives in Barcelos, I might go visit him. Or should I do Braga way? I am open to all ideas.
- Between Porto & Galicia, is it easy to 'switch' trails and go from inland to the coast, or vice versa?

Have an excellent day!

We also started in Coimbra. We took a bus from Porto.So you could take a bus from SdC to Porto and then onwards to Coimbra
We did 2 days in the coastal route up to Vila de Conde and went in to Rates and on to Barcelos in the central route. We are now in the Spiritual variant (off Pontevedra) and will arrived in SdC next Saturday. Bueno Camino
 
You can take the train from Valença do Minho to Coimbra see the (today’s) itinerary of Comboios de Portugal aka CP or the Portuguese raiway system.
I took two screenshots because the first one did not cover the whole screen of my IPhone .

I walked from Lisbon to Santiago once by Coimbra and stayed there 2 nights
Interesting is the university area with the famous medieval library and the Fado show just opposite the cathedral
It is not the Fado in the way of women are singing like Amalia Rodrigues or others but sung by a group of male student singers dressed in black capes. Very tastefull music .
We liked the walk from there to Porto .

Bom caminho
 

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