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LIVE from the Camino BP on the Requena June 2022

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Bad Pilgrim

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
Yes
Hello everyone and welcome back to my channel!

In less than a week I travel to Valencia to start the Camino de la Requena. It is an alternative to the Ruta de la Lana. The Camino de la Requena starts in Valencia and joins the Lana in Monteagudo de las Salinas.

Why? Because the Lana is my favorite camino so far, so... why not check out the variants?

The Lana is one of the less traveled routes to Santiago, and the Requena even lesser. Here is a little bit of information about the Requena, to spark some interest:

A video of the Requena, all the way to Burgos: Video
The guide for the stretch Valencia - Cuenca: Guía
Another guide that looks up-to-date: Guía
Of course, brave pilgrims have already posted about the Requena, such as @Joe McDonald here.

I plan to post live from this Camino, until (if) I reach Cuenca where I will stop this time.

Accomodation seems to be tricky especially for the first stages out of Valencia. As in Joe's report above. (I wonder if @JLWV can help me out here.) I also have had trouble with a leg since I started to prepare for walking, which has caused me not to do any long walks at all before leaving. I wonder what I have gotten myself into. But that I wonder before every Camino, so...

Stay tuned.

/BP
 
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Bad Pilgrim

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Yes
Yay,

I have been talking to señor Juan José from the Asociación del Camino de la Lana. It is always nice to get in contact with helpful people right from the get-go!

There seems to be place(s) to stay in Loriguilla (1st stage) after all. Anyway, I plan to stay my first night in Manises (barely out of Valencia) and then carry on to Loriguilla the second day. Since I have had next to no training this time, I thought it would be best to start slowly.

So my humble itinerary for the first 2 days are:

Valencia - Manises (8 kms)
Manises - Loriguilla (13 kms)

And even if there would be nowhere to stay in Loriguilla I can take the commuter train back to Valencia, sleep there, and then go back to Loriguilla the following day.
 
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Bad Pilgrim

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Past OR future Camino
Yes
OK, so I am leaving tomorrow and I still have got a million things to do!

Like... going for walks to prepare for the Camino. I have had NO time for this. Or carrying my (new) backpack (which I try to keep as light as possible).

Oh well, I will give it a try and see how far I get this time.

Hopefully I will post here tomorrow evening, when I reach my hostel in Valencia.

If you have any tips& tricks/knowledge about the stages I am walking, feel free to tell me.

To be continued :eek:
 

Bad Pilgrim

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
Yes
I made it!

I am in my luxurious hostal B&B Mercat (34 euros) in central Valencia and I got it all sorted out for tomorrow's walk to Manises. Except that my B&B is a hostal without a reception, so I don't know how to get my credencial stamped. I guess I have to ask at a random café, at least that proves that I have been to Valencia.

I was here 8 years ago to start the Levante, but I don't really remember much of the city. I went to the Cathedral to see if I could spot any arrows and sure enough I caught 2 of them on camera (see below). I have no idea if they belong to the Levante or the Requena...! Who knows where I will end up tomorrow.

There are 3 places to stay in Manises according to the guide. Hostal Avenida had horrible reviews so I didn't bother. I then called Restaurante Pepe but he doesn't have rooms any more. So I booked Hotel Manises (35 euros).

It will only be 8 kms tomorrow but I have to start slowly...

This evening's pictures below.
 

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John Brierley 2022 Camino Guide
Get your today and start planning.
I went to the Cathedral to see if I could spot any arrows and sure enough I caught 2 of them on camera (see below). I have no idea if they belong to the Levante or the Requena...! Who knows where I will end up tomorrow.
Well... if you follow the arrow in your 2nd arrow photo, you'll be on the wild Camino BarZone 😊

Wonderful photos @Bad Pilgrim ! I look forward to following along with your posts!
 

Bad Pilgrim

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
Yes
Impossible to find stamp. People in these touristy cafés have no clue what I am talking about... I visited the churches that were open in the Old town, earlier today, cause I thought someone would help me out. But I didn't see any staff so no stamp from church either... I have been awake and travelling since 4 am so I need to sleep now...

Tomorrow: suburbian walk to Manises...

Good Night 💤💤💤
 

OzAnnie

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
2020
Hi @Bad Pilgrim
Following your posts. I’ve been home 6 days now but seeing your plan I’m already missing it.
Great plan to give yourself time at the start .. it’s tempting to overdo it at beginning; but sometimes we burn ourselves out.

(((((( quote from @Bad Pilgrim - #13. /
Impossible to find stamp. People in these touristy cafés have no clue what I am talking about.)))))))


With the sellos …. I found on one or two occasions; when asking for one -(on the lesser travelled routes) that the ‘penny dropped’ if I showed them my credencial with the selection of stamps…. Aha!!! They could see what I was after.


Buen camino
 
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Bad Pilgrim

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
Yes
The invisible staff at my self-service hostal (or the A.I. that responds to my text messages) advised me to go to the Cathedral-Sacristía in the morning with my credencial. And voilà: I got stamp!! (Luckily by a real staff, not an artifical one. The church is not fully automatic yet) 🤗

It is already so hot... And all these tempting suburbian cafés make me wonder of I will ever reach Manises ☕ yum yum...!
 

Bad Pilgrim

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
Yes
Day 1: Valencia (centro) - Manises, 8 kms

... So I got my first stamp at the sacristía. The two arrows I spotted yesterday (see above) were indeed the first of the Requena. Next to the Cathedral and the Plaza there is a small garden with an information panel about the Spanish civil war and air raids: that is where you start! And after that there are arrows every 50 mtrs all the way to Manises so you can't actually go wrong. This is the easiest way out of a large city I have ever done on a Camino, and Valencia is the 3rd largest city in Spain! I didn't need to check any map.

So I am still in the suburbs. But luckily there are cultural thingies to see. There is a Ruta de la Cerámica here, that shows you the mosaics and sculptures that Manises has been decorated with. So it is not your typical industrial suburb, at least. As I had to deviate from the Camino to search for my Hotel Manises (35 euros), I think I stumbled across more of the street art than the regular pilgrim going straight to Loriguilla. Some pictures below.

I am currently waiting to check in at the hotel (no earlier than 2 pm). If 35 euros is too much, you can take the metro back to Valencia and stay the night there. I think Manises could also be a good starting point on the Camino, as it is next to the airport. That will shorten the first stage to Loriguilla with 8 kms, leaving 13 more to be done. Which is what I will be doing tomorrow.

But it is so hot 🥵...!

Tag along!
 

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Bad Pilgrim

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Past OR future Camino
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I hope your room has aircon then.
How hot is it outside?

Tks for the detail and the pics.

30C but it feels hotter... Perhaps I am not used to it yet.

I always look for accomodation with AC... Since I always walk in Summer. My albergue days are over - that is why I end up in these places that are 30+ euros!

Juan José from the Asociación told me that the lodging tomorrow in Loriguilla is also 30 euros - or the deportivo (sports hall), which I assume is free.
 

Elena peregrina

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VdlP, Portugues, Norte,primitivo,Madrid, Invierno, Ingles , Arles, Aragones, Olvidado, Salvador
Got his phone number. Now, I am one sturdy pilgrim who can fend for himself. But it feels safe to have a lifeline should something unexpected occur...!
I agree! Juan Jose (Juanjo) was an amazing support when I contacted him recently to help a pilgrim we met on the Lana who had an accident resulting in a fractured foot. He organised local people to provide all the help needed to get the pilgrim back to UK. Can’t thank him enough.
 
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Bad Pilgrim

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Past OR future Camino
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I agree! Juan Jose (Juanjo) was an amazing support when I contacted him recently to help a pilgrim we met on the Lana who had an accident resulting in a fractured foot. He organised local people to provide all the help needed to get the pilgrim back to UK. Can’t thank him enough.
I am glad it all ended well for this pilgrim! Actually there are quite a few of us who have had problems on the Lana, it is almost a recurring theme. I hurt my foot in 2017 and had to stop for a week.

The fact that the pilgrim got help rapidly does not surprise me. The Lana hosts some of the most active and helpful hospitaleros/members of a Camino association, in my opinion. Joaquín, Mónica, Pepe& Antonio, Luis... Yet another reason why I like the Lana so much.
 

peregrina2000

Moderator
Staff member
I have been talking to señor Juan José from the Asociación del Camino de la Lana. It is always nice to get in contact with helpful people right from the get-go!

BP, do you have the contact info? Is it via this website:


Their contact page lists a lot of options, but I’m assuming you were in touch with the first one on the list — via email?

I’m asking because I am now going to suspend my judgment about whether my next camino will be the Lana from Alicante/Villajoyosa or the Lana from Valencia. You are injecting way too much doubt with these early posts. And I do love Valencia!
 

Elena peregrina

New Member
Past OR future Camino
VdlP, Portugues, Norte,primitivo,Madrid, Invierno, Ingles , Arles, Aragones, Olvidado, Salvador
BP, do you have the contact info? Is it via this website:


Their contact page lists a lot of options, but I’m assuming you were in touch with the first one on the list — via email?

I’m asking because I am now going to suspend my judgment about whether my next camino will be the Lana from Alicante/Villajoyosa or the Lana from Valencia. You are injecting way too much doubt with these early posts. And I do love Valencia!
I used this phone number to contact him The incident happened in Atienza 1655050703289.png
 

Bad Pilgrim

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
Yes
BP, do you have the contact info? Is it via this website:


Their contact page lists a lot of options, but I’m assuming you were in touch with the first one on the list — via email?

I’m asking because I am now going to suspend my judgment about whether my next camino will be the Lana from Alicante/Villajoyosa or the Lana from Valencia. You are injecting way too much doubt with these early posts. And I do love Valencia!

At the bottom of the page there is a space to fill in, to send questions to them. So I didn't need to choose a recipient. Juan José answered, within minutes!

I know there are many contending starting points in the area. I prefer Alicante, but that is just me. These valencian suburbs don't have any free-roaming pigs!!
 
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Bad Pilgrim

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Past OR future Camino
Yes
Day 2: Manises - Loriguilla, 13 kms

Manises is the last suburb before reaching the countryside. There are fincas and factories scattered all around, and part of the walk is next to the airport and a highway. Most of it on asphalt. People starting in Valencia and going straight for Loriguilla as a first stage will be walking almost exclusively on asphalt the first day. As I remember it, the Camino de Levante also has a lot of tarmac when it leaves Valencia.

Earlier in spring there were heavy rainfall and floods in the region of Valencia. No trace of that today. It was hot, dusty and dry as far as the eye could see. But a lot of mosquitos. A consequence of the previous floodings?

I found yesterday's walk in the suburbs much more interesting than today. All in all the stretch from Manises to Loriguilla reminded me of the first stage from Alicante. But there you have the Ermita de San Pascual to look forward to, as a little pilgrimage in its own right. Today was quite uninspiring. I saw a dog in a skirt for the first time in my life (first picture below). That's about it.

I am staying at señora Itziar's apartment in Loriguilla. It is not 7 euros as stated in the guide, but in fact 35 euros (!!!). Señora, what did the pandemic do to you? This is my 3rd consecutive 30+euros-accomodation. But most people won't stay in Manises, I think, so I am spending more money than the average pilgrim right now. That's the inconvenience of moving like a turtle 🐢!

On the bright side, the apartment is worth its 35 euros. AC, kitchen, fridge, bathroom, wifi... you name it (last picture below).

Tomorrow I plan to stay in Chiva, 17 kms from here. Trying to add a few kms from day to day, slowly getting used to longer stages. And there are heatwaves coming up, according to the news...
 

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Bad Pilgrim

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Yes
The new(ish) church is interesting because of its ultra-modern bell tower, complete with a small viewing platform. I wonder if it is open to the public for a bird's eye view. Did you try to get in to climb, @Bad Pilgrim? I never pass a bell tower without at least trying to go up.

No I didn't know! I just got back from there, as I got the stamp from the Ayuntamiento. Oh well, I will check it out in the evening. Right now I am clutched to the AC and I don't want to go anywhere... ❄️❄️
 

OzAnnie

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
2020
So my humble itinerary for the first 2 days are:

Valencia - Manises (8 kms)
Manises - Loriguilla (13 kms)

Tomorrow I plan to stay in Chiva, 17 kms from here. Trying to add a few kms from day to day, slowly getting used to longer stages. And there are heatwaves coming up, according to the news..

IMO I think you are being a ‘good’ pilgrim .. or ‘responsible’ ? one that is .
…… assessing the weather & your readiness to gradually increase the days walk. You’ll be able to gauge your own water requirements.
Your accommodation tonight looks very comfortable & cool 😎 .

Buen camino
 

Bad Pilgrim

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
Yes
Day 3: Loriguilla - Chiva, 17 kms

As my stages get longer, I gradually slip into Camino mood. Especially today when the scenery was wonderful. Although it was getting a tad too hot when I reached Chiva at noon. I got hold of Hostal-restaurante El Canario. 20 euros for a room with no AC, but at least an electric fan.

Another day on the asphalt. I should have walked on a dirt road for several kms before Cheste but the arroyo was flooded (first picture below). I tried to find safe spots for my shoes: impossible. I could see the dirt road pretty close, but who knows if there would be more water after this? My feet started to sink through the soggy ground and I didn't feel like taking my shoes and socks off. I waded back to the tarmac, soaked from my calves and down. I felt this was the safest option. Sure enough, when the road approached the Camino again before Cheste I could see another river crossing that I would have had difficulties navigating through. As for my shoes, I felt them cold and soaked for a couple of kms, but on the heated asphalt they were soon boiling together with the rest of me so after a while I didn't feel them being wet at all.

In Cheste I saw the first Camino mosaics so far: on the walls and on the pavement. And the church was beautiful. Someone must have given it a good swab with the mop because the facade looked super clean. Not that it was shining marble or anything, but it looked nice. And above the portico, a shepherd with his... bull. Although the best view of the church is from inside the panadería across the street, where I indulged in napolitanas and café con leche before heading out for 5 more kms to Chiva.

The scenery was all I ever hoped for. There are 5 easy kms on a quiet, flowery country road between Cheste and Chiva. The views reminded me of the landscape that I know from the first stages of the Lana, or the Levante. For the first day since Valencia I had the feeling of actually walking a Camino again.

Chiva has several laundromats. Good for me, as my clothes need a harsh treatment after my encounter with the wetlands today. Who knows what ungodly creatures I captured in my socks 😱!

Maybe I will post more pictures of Chiva later, when I go for a walk in the afternoon. Both Cheste and Chiva are pleasant towns!
 

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Bad Pilgrim

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Past OR future Camino
Yes
... I went for a walk, now that the temperature has dropped. I wanted to scoop out the way before tomorrow. No luck: Chiva is a maze, albeit a beautiful one. Back at my hostal I noticed the arrows right outside my door... El Canario is practically right on the Camino.

El Canario won't win any housekeeping awards, but it is totally ok for 20 euros. My wallet needed that. I just called Casa Rosa at my next stop in Siete aguas, which is unfortunately 55 euros according to señora Rosa. But I could hear her husband shout in the background that he would make me a "buen precio" since I was a pilgrim. What that means remains to be seen. Either way, I will have to pay more than the 15 (!) euros listed in the guide. Someone needs to update those documents!

More photos of Chiva below!
 

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Bad Pilgrim

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Yes
Day 4: Chiva - Siete Aguas, 28 kms

What a day. I am not used to 28 kms. To make a long story short: last part of it was hell. When I got to the first bar in Siete Aguas I felt sick, to the point of throwing up. But now I think it is ok.

First I walked from Chiva to Buñol. About 12 kms in the same, lovely countryside as yesterday. There was one or two junctions where I went wrong, because the arrows had faded. Otherwise the waymarking was excellent, as before. I reached Buñol early around 8 am.

Buñol is famous for its Tomatina: a tradition where the inhabitants - nowadays also tourists - throw tomatoes at each other. Words cannot describe it, so I will link a video here. You thought running with the bulls in Pamplona was crazy? Think again.

Luckily this happens only once a year. I was not greeted with rotten tomatoes as I entered town. There were no signs of previous veggie-wars either. I can only imagine how much time and money is needed to clean up the mess afterwards...!

Today, Buñol was a tidy, picturesque town at the bottom of a valley, kind of. Not as striking as Alcalá del Júcar, of course, but it did remind me of said town. With water flowing from the hills, there are many drinking fountains sprinkled across town, beautifully decorated. The town must be a tourist magnet even when there is truce between tomato warriors.

There are fantastic views of Buñol and its castle when you walk up the hill on your way to Siete Aguas. Unfortunately my deplorable body was not prepared for the ascent, nor for the heat, and I agonized all the way to Siete Aguas. That said, the scenery is spectacular. The highest point is about 850 mtrs above sea level.

You need to bring water because there is nothing for 16 kms. I did bring it, but it was boiling in the heat and I reluctantly drank from it. If I could I would have grabbed the garden hose in one of the fancy houses along the way: I was that desperate. Oh and I had no cellphone reception for a while so I wondered what I had gotten myself into. Those mere 16 kms are listed as a separate stage in the guidebook. Now I understand why.

In Siete Aguas, Señora Rosa charged 35 euros for a room that is 55 euros on Booking. No AC so I might have to ask for an electric fan or something.

Siete Aguas is just as cozy as previous towns. Check out the enormous fountain with seven heads (see below). Hey I don't even need Wikipedia to figure out that those are the Seven Waters - Siete Aguas - that lent their name to the town. Please don't tell me I am wrong... 😖

Tomorrow there are 23 kms to Requena. I will pay anything for a room with AC!!
 

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Isca-camigo

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Various ones.
What a day. I am not used to 28 kms. To make a long story short: last part of it was hell. When I got to the first bar in Siete Aguas I felt sick, to the point of throwing up. But now I think it is ok.
Hope you keep well, these temps are unreal. I'm in Andalusia in the mountains and the sun is like a hammer, a maximum of 15 minutes outside for me at the moment. I have been in hotter but these rays seem to have extra oomph.
 

Bad Pilgrim

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Past OR future Camino
Yes
Hope you keep well, these temps are unreal. I'm in Andalusia in the mountains and the sun is like a hammer, a maximum of 15 minutes outside for me at the moment. I have been in hotter but these rays seem to have extra oomph.

Oh,

Where in Andalucia are you? Yes it was ok when I was close to the sea, but now temperature rises as I move towards Castilla - La Mancha... I heard it was even worse in Extremadura so I wonder if people on the Vía dlPlata are ok.
 
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Isca-camigo

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Past OR future Camino
Various ones.
Oh,

Where in Andalucia are you? Yes it was ok when I was close to the sea, but now temperature rises as I move towards Castilla - La Mancha... I heard it was even worse in Extremadura so I wonder if people on the Vía dlPlata are ok.
I'm about 25 km inland from Malaga, it's cooler than the rest of Andulicia but it still feels extreme.
 

Bad Pilgrim

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
Yes
Day 5: Siete Aguas - Requena, 23 kms

Most of today's walk was on a country road for the first time since I left Valencia. Shortly after Siete Aguas, the Camino joins other hiking trails in the area. Before Rebollar I entered the paraje natural Villingordo (I think that is what I read on an information panel). A paraje natural is basically: nice surroundings and hiking trails; Caminos naturales. I walked on a broad dirt road and arrived comfortably in the hamlet of Rebollar, half-way to Requena.

There is a truck stop-restaurant in Rebollar, but it is not accessible from the Camino. I had to walk through Rebollar and follow the motorway in a loop, over the highway, to get there. At the end of the bridge there are steps that bring you down immediately in the direction of the restaurant so there is some kind of shortcut. The walk to the restaurant and back is about 1 km, I think. Ironically, when I was back on the Camino the regular bar in Rebollar was opening. That one is right on the Camino, so if you find it open there is no need to make the detour to the truck stop.

I was not prepared for the beauty on the second part of this stage! From Rebollar, the Camino mostly follows the camino natural of Turia-Cabriel. The scenery kept changing every km: from open fields to pine forest, to a small river, to rocks and vertical cliffs à la Sigüenza, to vineyards... Always among rolling hills that were shining green in spite of the dry summer. I fished out my cellphone more than once to take pictures (see below). Later I discovered I had actually walked an alternative route, as described by the guidebook. But I just followed the arrows. I guess a lot of people will end up there as well, and I don't think they will complain.

I was tired but happy when I reached Requena. The town looks interesting. I am sure I will make more use of my cellphone this evening. Castle and churches abound. I saw the entrance to the Museum of Requena: maybe I will visit them later.

There is an albergue de peregrinos here, but I need to be sure there is an AC and I doubt I will find one there. I opted for Hotel Avenida, 35 euros. There is a cheaper alternative but a few kms outside town (Motel Sol, 30 euros).

Tomorrow is the peak of the heatwave, at least in this area. I need to plan carefully...
 

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Past OR future Camino
Latest: Rota Vicentina '19; Portuguese '19.
The first half of your day sounded a bit of a drag, so was glad to read the second half was a delight.

P.S. A very nice variety of pictures you've posted.
 
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Bad Pilgrim

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
Yes
The first half of your day sounded a bit of a drag, so was glad to read the second half was a delight.

P.S. A very nice variety of pictures you've posted.

It was a varied scenery, especially after Rebollar! And very quiet. Except for a couple of sport planes, since there is a hangar next to the Camino (close to Rebollar). They closed in on me while I was walking, probably just for fun. Yes this was the best stage so far...!
 
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Bad Pilgrim

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
Yes
Take care. For purely selfish reasons, my desire to read more about your journey, I am keen to see you take good care of yourself travelling in the heat.
Thanks, I do my best to be out early in the morning. I am also prepared to walk shorter stages than planned. To think I originally calculated 10 days between Valencia and Cuenca...! I have completely abandoned those plans now. In this weather, I should be glad if I can get to Cuenca at all...
 

Bad Pilgrim

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
Yes
I am having trouble to find a place to stay in Caudete de las Fuentes tomorrow: restaurante las Viñas doesn't pick up the phone. I may have to stop in Utiel which would be a really short stage. Oh well, maybe it is time for a short stage again.

In the meantime: sightseeing in Requena in pictures below. But the museum was closed, unfortunately. The albergue de peregrinos is in one of the photos.
 

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Bad Pilgrim

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
Yes
Beautiful pictures — what are those broken arches?

I have no idea. They are next to the carretera a couple of kms after Siete Aguas. They are huge and I looked for an information panel but saw nothing. I don't see anything on Google Maps either. Maybe they are not as ancient as they look!
 

Bad Pilgrim

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
Yes
Being the officious intermeddler again, I WhatsApped them and got a response in minutes. They don’t have rooms and they say there is no place in town with rooms. Looks like a short day for you tomorrow, BP!

Thanks Laurie, you're an angel. As soon as I read this I decided to stay in Utiel. I already arrived... I am nibbling on a croissant as I write.

Utiel is a large town so I am sure there are cheap options, but I chose hostel El Vegano just because it appeared on Booking (40 euros). I did call the Casa rural El pollo de enmedio first (15 euros in the guidebook, but probably much more by now) but no answer.

Oh yes: the hostal El Vegano. I wonder if they will go through my belongings and confiscate my chorizo at arrival...! 😱
 
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Bad Pilgrim

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
Yes
Day 6: Requena - Utiel, 15 kms

It is difficult to plan for the days ahead when accomodation is scarce. Seems I have to walk 15 - 17 - 32 kms for the next three days. But temperatures should start to drop from now on.

Today was an easy walk. First from Requena to San Antonio, where I had breakfast. San Antonio is a functional town centered around the carretera that runs straight through it, with a lot of bars and restaurants on both sides of the road. After breakfast I continued towards Utiel, next to the highway and among the vineyards.

Utiel has a small medieval town centered around the church. As I arrived early I strolled through the narrow streets, watching the merchants put up their tents for the street market. Next to the church is a bomb shelter from the civil war: picture below. The entrance was locked. I wonder if it is possible to visit...! The information panel only spoke about its history though.

I stay in hostal El Vegano, 40 euros. Too tired to check if there are cheaper alternatives in town. I wondered if the staff would search my pockets and investigate my rucksack for animal products. But when I went to the restaurant El Vegano, next to the hostal, what I saw in there was certainly not vegan!! 😵 It may just be that the guy who lent his name to the block - and I saw some sort of mural painting or information on my way here - is named Vegano, with no connection to food at all. I think I made a fool out of myself again...

Here the municipal museum opens at 5 o'clock. I think I will check it out, and at the same time ask them how to enter the bomb shelter...!

Pictures, mostly of Utiel, below.
 

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Bad Pilgrim

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Past OR future Camino
Yes
BP, I am curious about what that tall modern looking "tower" in the first two photos is; rather strange looking. Do you have any idea?

It looks like something they built to have easier access to the top of the fortress. Since it seems to be connected to the fortress with a bridge. But I don't really know.
 

peregrina2000

Moderator
Staff member
I think I will check it out, and at the same time ask them how to enter the bomb shelter...!
I hope you were able to enter the bomb shelter. I remember we took a tour of the shelter in Almeria and it was really fascinating. A testament to the human spirit and resilience. There was even an underground “hospital”. I’m sure there was a lot of sadness in that makeshift hospital, but it is also where a number of babies were born.

Looks like works to restore and open the shelter started almost 3 years ago, so hopefully they’re open!

 
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Bad Pilgrim

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
Yes
I hope you were able to enter the bomb shelter. I remember we took a tour of the shelter in Almeria and it was really fascinating. A testament to the human spirit and resilience. There was even an underground “hospital”. I’m sure there was a lot of sadness in that makeshift hospital, but it is also where a number of babies were born.

Looks like works to restore and open the shelter started almost 3 years ago, so hopefully they’re open!


The tourist office offers guided tours! If the info is still accurate.

If it wasn't so dang hot outside 🥵...!
 

Bad Pilgrim

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
Yes
*** INTERMISSION: CULTURAL EXPLOIT! ***

In the evening I went to the tourist office and signed up for a guided tour of the bomb shelter. I also decided to visit the museum of Utiel.

I chose the right day to visit Utiel. There is a festival the 17-19 of June with many activities in town. Now I understand why there were so many tents at the street market, so many tourists, and so many people from the Ayuntamiento working in the streets - for example building a stage in front of the church.

I was the first one at the refugio att 6.30 where I met up with a guide who was very nice and talkative! More people appeared; eventally we were a group of 15 who walked straight down into the underground in a tunnel from 1938. If you have claustrophobia this is not for you. But I was mezmerized. There are parts of the system that are filled with sand, but enough of it has been restored. The tunnels were actually there from the beginning, in medieval times, and when the war started people lengthened them. There are even more tunnels under Utiel - the bodegas - and the guide urged me to visit those as well. But there was no time, since I have to go to bed early.

I did have time to go to the local museum. Of course it was all about the history of Utiel, from Roman times until today: coins, pottery, handicraft, paintings, tools... I liked it: there was a lot to see.

The staff told me that there would be a piano concert at 8, then a movie (directed by Berlanga who spent his summers in Utiel) outside in the garden. All free of charge. I was REALLY tempted to see the movie! But 9 o'clock is when I go to bed, since I rise early. I just can't risk my sleep when I have to walk 26 kms tomorrow. The place in Fuenterrobles is closed permanently, at least according to Google. I have to push on to Camporrobles and the Casa rural El Roble (18 euros).

Don't go anywhere!
 

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Bad Pilgrim

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
Yes
Day 7: Utiel - Camporrobles, 26 kms

Well that was interesting.

Two things made this stage different from the others: 1) unclear waymarking and 2) talkative people in the villages. Guess which one I prefer...

The way out of Utiel was no problem because I saw the arrows when I visited the museum yesterday. Unfortunately waymarking would not be so good for the rest of the day. And I think it can lead to some confusion on this stage.

First of all, a couple of kms after Utiel there is a split in the Camino. I could see bright yellow arrows in the direction of Las Casas, and an easy-to-miss faded arrow pointing towards Caudete. Pilgrims who want to go to Caudete could easily miss this and end up in Las Casas instead, so be careful. Anyway, it seems that they want to steer pilgrims to Las Casas, with the guidebook and with the fresh arrows. Perhaps because there is no longer a place to stay in Caudete, as restaurante Las Viñas no longer has rooms.

I still went to Caudete because it looked larger than Las Casas on the map, so it should be easier to find breakfast there. Caudete has several bars and restaurants down by the road, but only Las Viñas was open this Saturday morning.

There were no arrows when I left Caudete which was odd. I had to check the guidebook several times. Waymarking would continue to be scarce, and I had to rely on GPS to get through the vineyards. Once the Camino joined the route coming from Las Casas, things improved. The terrain became more rugged as I approached Fuenterrobles, with cliffs and hills as a backdrop to the vineyards. I was never alone as there were many cyclists coming from every direction... They seemed to have put up their base camp in the bar in Fuenterrobles, where they were arriving and taking off non-stop as I relaxed with a café con leche.

Two men at the bar asked if I was a pilgrim. A lengthy chat ensued! One of them had walked the Camino Francés four times. We chatted about the Camino, about the heat and about this and that. Then I headed out for my last stretch to Camporrobles. It was hot, but not unbearably. Only occasional arrows. I relied on cairns in the junctions were there was nothing else to follow. I ended up on the road, where a car slowed down and asked me if I wanted a ride into Camporrobles. He thought I was suffering in the heat. I gracefully declined: there were only a few kms left.

In Camporrobles I had trouble finding the Casa rural El Roble. The owner had to send her son to "pick me up". Well he arrived on a bike so I walked beside him. He had walked four Caminos, of which he laid out the details as if I was someone who was totally clueless about the Camino de Santiago. I could have told him a little something about my experience, but chose to bite my tongue.

The casa rural is equipped with everything I need. I haven't paid yet: could I have misinterpreted that this would only cost me 18 euros?? It seems to good to be true. And tomorrow only 13 kms to Mira and to another casa rural. There is an albergue de Peregrinos in Mira, but I have to get hold of the Ayuntamiento and they are closed today and tomorrow. I should have thought about this before!

After Mira there is a whammy of 33 kms coming up *gasp* !
 

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Bad Pilgrim

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
Yes
Day 8: Camporrobles - Mira, 13 kms

Yesterday I talked with the owner's daughter when she came to stamp my credencial and to do some chores around the house. I wrote that it was a casa rural, but it is actually an apartment. There was a casa rural El Roble in town (now closed) which I mistook for this (alojamiento rural). The daughter also runs a hostal in Navarra (if I understood correctly) on the Camino francés so we chatted lengthily about the different Caminos. She has hiked the Appalachian trail, during five months, among other things! What an interesting person - and what a nice house! Breakfast was basically included since I could take whatever I wanted from the fridge, and she had bought bread. This was 18 euros. I strongly recommend future pilgrims to stay in Camporrobles.

I slept longer than usual as I was up to a short stage today: 13 tiny kms to Mira. Well it was probably closer to 15 kms as I got lost. After leaving Camporrobles I knew from the guidebook that I should turn right onto a road called Buitrón. When I got there, there was no indication whatsoever that I should take this road. This time I went right, but it is an example of how bad the waymarking is in the area.

Sure, the border to Castilla-La Mancha is a stone's throw away from Camporrobles. From there on there are robust, light blue mojones showing the way (see picture below). But it turned out I couldn't rely on them either. There was a sign to turn left, then nothing... I realized I was walking away from Mira. I had to take a shortcut through the dry woods on an ungodly trail that looked like it hadn't been used since the Inquisition. I must have walked a couple of kms extra until I stumbled upon the waymarks again. I suggest you pay attention and have a map handy on this stage.

In Mira, I missed the Corpus Christi festival that ended yesterday. People were wrapping up their tents and carrying away chairs and tables from the streets. It must have been fun, with a lot of activities like in Utiel a few days ago. As for the bars, they were all closed. Sundays are not my favorite day on the Camino...

Surprisingly, when I got to the casa rural El Castrón, the adjacent bar Carlos was open and full of costumers. It turned out that the bar is the casa rural, with rooms above the bar. So it is basically a hostal. 40 euros for this room is too much. Not clean, a weird smell, sockets falling out of the wall... More like 20 euros. There are only two good things about the room: there is 1) a fridge and 2) a fan. Well I just broke the fan so I only have the fridge now.

I wonder if I have to pay for the broken fan. Everything falls apart in here anyway so how can you not break things... If I could I would have stayed in the Albergue de Peregrinos.

Tomorrow: 33 kms in a not so flat terrain. I have no idea how I will make it but I have no other choice.
 

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Maxsmart

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Camino Frances (2015), Camino Frances (2022)
Wow, such a different experience than a “typical” Camino. It looks like you are the only pilgrim most days? Love the pictures, especially of the museum. I can never pass up a museum!
 

dick bird

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
Plata, Ingles, Madrid, Norte, Primitivo, Invierno, Aragones, Olvidado, Chemin D'Arles
Well done. The photos are great and I admire your persistence. You’ll be passing through Monteagudo. Sandra will be hard to contact unless you have Movistar, but her little house is excellent and she will show you where the shop is. Don’t worry about the ‘blocked’ finca just after the village - the gate isn’t locked and the two large dogs who come bounding towards you are mainly interested in sniffing your nether regions. The two bed albergue in Fuentes is very basic - they are redecorating but the nice lady in the ayuntamiento will let you in. The last stretch into Cuenca is uphill and down dale so think about the road option. Luis will probably be waiting on the steps of the albergue in Cuenca having been advised of your approach by a friend or associate. He is a prince amongst Hospitaleros. We’ve just finished the Lana from Alicante so feel free to PM if you have any questions. Buen Camino.
 
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dick bird

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Plata, Ingles, Madrid, Norte, Primitivo, Invierno, Aragones, Olvidado, Chemin D'Arles
Just curious, @dick bird — would your recommendation be to go with Movistar for the Lana?
We had Vodafone and there were a couple of places where we needed coverage and didn’t have it . Monteagudo was one and Villar de Trabaque was another. Both times a local was kind enough to lend us their phone and I believe Movistar is what they had. If there is anyone reading this thread who can give better info, please let us know the best SIM to get for coverage.
 

Bad Pilgrim

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Yes
Wow, such a different experience than a “typical” Camino. It looks like you are the only pilgrim most days? Love the pictures, especially of the museum. I can never pass up a museum!
Oh yes, it is different. I haven't met a single pilgrim since Valencia! Maybe when I join the other branch of the Lana in Monteagudo de las Salinas in two days. But I think the heat scared away most of them!
 

Bad Pilgrim

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Past OR future Camino
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Well done. The photos are great and I admire your persistence. You’ll be passing through Monteagudo. Sandra will be hard to contact unless you have Movistar, but her little house is excellent and she will show you where the shop is. Don’t worry about the ‘blocked’ finca just after the village - the gate isn’t locked and the two large dogs who come bounding towards you are mainly interested in sniffing your nether regions. The two bed albergue in Fuentes is very basic - they are redecorating but the nice lady in the ayuntamiento will let you in. The last stretch into Cuenca is uphill and down dale so think about the road option. Luis will probably be waiting on the steps of the albergue in Cuenca having been advised of your approach by a friend or associate. He is a prince amongst Hospitaleros. We’ve just finished the Lana from Alicante so feel free to PM if you have any questions. Buen Camino.

Yes! I remember now: my phone went on strike last time I was arriving in Monteagudo! I had phoned Sandra from Campillo de Altobuey so I knew I had a room. But when I got there I couldn't call her. The guys in the bar phoned her for me. I don't think I can change anything about my phone right now, but you reminded me I need to tell Sandra about this problem before I get there.

As for the last stretch into Cuenca: do you mean from Melgosa? Yes I have always been tempted to take the road N420-N320, but it looks so dangerous!! I imagine the cars will be mad at me. It sure would be shorter to walk there, than doing all those extra kms out in the fields before Cuenca. Did you walk on the road and how was it??
 

Bad Pilgrim

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
Yes
I must be senile... I wrote this myself three years ago:

My phone also went on strike, so I couldn't call to tell Sandra I was approaching. The man in the (only?) bar helped me to get hold of her. Apparently, the whole village is connected to Movistar. If you don't have Movistar you can't use your phone. (Have anyone else had this problem in Monteagudo??)
 
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dick bird

Veteran Member
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Plata, Ingles, Madrid, Norte, Primitivo, Invierno, Aragones, Olvidado, Chemin D'Arles
Yes! I remember now: my phone went on strike last time I was arriving in Monteagudo! I had phoned Sandra from Campillo de Altobuey so I knew I had a room. But when I got there I couldn't call her. The guys in the bar phoned her for me. I don't think I can change anything about my phone right now, but you reminded me I need to tell Sandra about this problem before I get there.

As for the last stretch into Cuenca: do you mean from Melgosa? Yes I have always been tempted to take the road N420-N320, but it looks so dangerous!! I imagine the cars will be mad at me. It sure would be shorter to walk there, than doing all those extra kms out in the fields before Cuenca. Did you walk on the road and how was it??
We followed the arrows, that’s how I know. It was a hot day, nothing was open and we just felt we were being led all over the hills just for the sake of it, but if you have gas in the tank you might find it a pleasant option (until you get to the outskirts of town), it’s not a lot further but the arrows disappear on the edge of town. Otherwise, the road has a wide shoulder and I think Alan Sykes did it. Cuenca is worth a rest day. The Monteagudo bar is only open at the weekend.
 

Bad Pilgrim

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
Yes
Day 9: Mira - Cardenete, 33 kms

Since I broke the fan yesterday I slept bad. It wasn't that hot outside, but the room got heated during the evening. I moved my bed next to the open window... I was glad to leave that room in the morning. If that place wasn't overpriced, I don't know what is.

The day started with a horrible climb out of Mira, through the winding streets that would never end... I was so tired when I reached the top. I must have sleepwalked for a while. I came to my senses on a steep descent with rocks and gravel, before the hamlet of Narboneta. There was a dangerous path yesterday as well, to get down to Mira, but this one was worse. I was conscient of every step I took - still I slipped and fell. Luckily I fell backwards and landed on my backpack so I wasn't hurt. It took me a long time to reach the bottom of the hill, where there is a fountain.

The Camino doesn't enter Narboneta and there is no bar there. I walked on the road for a while until the next ascent started, which was the hardest one of the day. I huffed and puffed and swore all the way up the hill. I saw another fountain, but it said "No potable". All in all I was very isolated. The terrain felt harsh and rugged, and the 22 kms between Mira and Villora seemed endless.

When I reached the ridge I entered an area that must have been devastated by fire. The trees were naked, black and withered all around me. I have never walked through such a place before. It was rather eerie. It wasn't all dark though: there were green grass and bushes already taking over on the ground. The colors created a sharp contrast that I tried to capture on camera, without success. The fire cannot have been that long ago though. I touched the branches on the trees as I walked by: they felt like coal to me, and my palms went black from ashes.

On the way down to Villora nature went back to normal. Even more rocky paths followed, all the way down to a creek where the guidebook says there is no other way than to wade through. It looked messy. I looked around and saw a stick, then a couple of stepping stones hidden in the rye. I used the stick to keep my balance and got over safely. I threw the stick back to the other side in case future pilgrims would like to use it. But in spring or autumn there must be even more water here. Guidebook says you should ask about the conditions of the creek before, and possibly take the road to Villora.

In Villora there is a bar next to a majestic medieval tower. I rested for a while, then started the third ascent of the day, this time on asphalt. I had to dodge cars and trucks for almost 9 kms, then a stretch on a dirt road into Cardenete.

Finally an albergue de peregrinos, free. The keys are with the Ayuntamiento. It is clean, about five beds, and I can wash my clothes. But there is nothing else, except for 1 thousand flies inside. I already phoned Sandra for her luxurious Casa rural in Monteagudo de las Salinas where I go tomorrow. The Valencian branch of the Lana is thus over, as the two variants (Alicante and Valencia) joins in Monteagudo! I still plan to walk two more stages, to Cuenca, since it is easier to connect to other cities from there.

Cardenete is dead today. All the restaurants and bars along the the main street are closed at 7 pm. Only the grocery store is open. I will make a new try now but the town looks empty. - Edit: El hogar del pensionista (bar) at the main square is open in the evening!

To be continued
 

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Past OR future Camino
Latest: Rota Vicentina '19; Portuguese '19.
BP, your pictures are very nice and blue sky is a plus, but your day sounds like it was a living nightmare! Hopefully tomorrow will be an improvement for you as I'd think it can only go up from here!
 

Bad Pilgrim

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
Yes
BP, your pictures are very nice and blue sky is a plus, but your day sounds like it was a living nightmare! Hopefully tomorrow will be an improvement for you as I'd think it can only go up from here!

It was also very long! But it feels good to be able to walk 30 kms now, as I started out with 8 kms a week ago!

I slept for 3 hours in the afternoon today so I was reeeally tired though... 💤

Tomorrow is 28 kms so I should be able to pull it off. But there might be storms tomorrow 😱
 

peregrina2000

Moderator
Staff member
Sounds like a good rest, BP!

When you are on one of your long stretches with big sky, no towns, and lots of time to ponder, you could think about this question — if I could only walk the Requena from Valencia to Caudete OR the Lana from Alicante to Caudete (continuing on the Lana from Caudete), which would I do? Inquiring minds would be very interested to hear your take on it. :p
 
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Bad Pilgrim

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Sounds like a good rest, BP!

When you are on one of your long stretches with big sky, no towns, and lots of time to ponder, you could think about this question — if I could only walk the Requena from Valencia to Caudete OR the Lana from Alicante to Caudete (continuing on the Lana from Caudete), which would I do? Inquiring minds would be very interested to hear your take on it. :p
Oh,

First of all there are two different Caudete: Caudete on the Lana/Sureste, and Caudete de las Fuentes where I was a few days ago! Maybe that is what you mean and I am slow at understanding 😞!

If you mean that you choose between starting the Lana in Valencia or Alicante, I must say I now prefer Valencia: because of the scenery along the way and the charm of most of the towns!
 

Bad Pilgrim

Veteran Member
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Yes
Day 10: Cardenete - Monteagudo de las Salinas, 28 kms (+ 6 kms)

I was excited this morning. I would join the Lana from Alicante and arrive at the luxurious El Rincón de Sandra in one of my favorite places on the Lana: Monteagudo de las Salinas. I had many things to look forward to! Unfortunately, my excitement would soon give way to anger, disappointment and despair. At least for a while.

It started out good with a hill after Cardenete, from where I could look out over undisturbed mountains and woods. I passed the hamlet of Yémeda, and walked by the peculiar buildings of the old balneario that is being restored next to the river. It must look cool when it is finished.

After the balneario, an arrow pointed me up the hill on the asphalt. Only after having walked 3 kms on the road, and having reached the top, did I realize I should have turned right at the balneario and not walked up the hill at all. This section of the Camino is flat flat flat. I had just climbed a mountain. I was heading towards Paracuellos de La Vega, on the "other" Lana! I walked down to the balneario again, furious, adding a total of 6 kms to the day's walk. The explanation is that a road sign with an arrow was overgrown. Pilgrims beware.

I had planned to walk 28 kms, not 34. I now thought I would be dead before reaching Monteagudo. The scenery soon distracted me: this stage is one of the most scenic on the Lana from Valencia. The Camino meandered along the bottom of the hills (that I had just climbed) next to a river and through the woods. Mostly in the shadow. I was mesmerized and went ooh and aah at every turn, trying to capture at least some of the beauty with my deplorable cellphone.

The middle part of the stage is also spectacular. The Camino leaves the river and goes uphill through a landscape with rocks and boulders in strange formations. No shadow any more, but breathtaking views all around. I reached the ridge, where I walked in the breeze for a while. Today would be only 28C in Monteagudo. It is the coolest weather I have had so far.

The last section goes through the pine woods and the open fields that I recall from my earlier visits on the Lana from Alicante. Soon I reached the spot where the two routes merge. It felt special to me, and I was back on familiar ground. The rest was an easy walk to Monteagudo.

The castle of the town, on top of a hill - or rather a mound - is visible a couple of kms before you get there. It looks like a Mexican pyramid. The arrival to Monteagudo offers one of the most majestic views of a town on the Lana in my opinion. The town only has 150 inhabitants but is imbued with Camino history. The branches of Valencia and Alicante meet here, and the "proper" Lana starts here as indicated by a monument. Three pilgrims started from Monteagudo de las Salinas in 1624 to fulfill their promise to walk to Santiago de Compostela.

There is some sort of albergue in town. But who can resist the charm of El Rincón de Sandra? 25 euros. Sandra and her husband waited for me at the door and she recognized me, just as she recognized me three years ago. They must think I am crazy running around like this in the area.

The bar is only open on week-ends now, but there is a grocery store. You have to ring the bell for the señora to open it to you, which is what I will do later in the evening. I hope she is home!

It started to rain while I wrote this. A cool night I hope. Tomorrow: Fuentes or Cuenca.
 

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Past OR future Camino
Latest: Rota Vicentina '19; Portuguese '19.
BP, looks like you had a very good day overall except for your one wrong turn. Your photos of the rock outcroppings are interesting. An added picture of your special lodging at El Rincon, would be a nice addition.
 

Bad Pilgrim

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
Yes
BP, looks like you had a very good day overall except for your one wrong turn. Your photos of the rock outcroppings are interesting. An added picture of your special lodging at El Rincon, would be a nice addition.

I will go for a walk in the rain - what a change! - and see if I can catch some photos of Monteagudo. I will also post pictures of the casa rural!
 
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Bad Pilgrim

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
Yes
Here is a tour of Monteagudo de las Salinas - and of the casa rural (my pictures below).

Sara Dhooma vlogged from the Lana. You can see the inside of the casa rural when she filmed this stage:
 

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peregrina2000

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First of all there are two different Caudete: Caudete on the Lana/Sureste, and Caudete de las Fuentes where I was a few days ago! Maybe that is what you mean and I am slow at understanding
I should have looked at a map — I just assumed that when you said you were walking to Caudete, that you were talking about the Caudete near Villena. Thanks for that clarification.

If you mean that you choose between starting the Lana in Valencia or Alicante, I must say I now prefer Valencia: because of the scenery along the way and the charm of most of the towns!

Wow — that recommendation coming from one of the forum‘s biggest cheerleaders for the Lana, that is incredibly high praise!

Looks like the route from Valencia is about twice as long as the Alicnte option — by twice as long, I mean twice as long to theh point where they merge. I’ll have to do some more comparisons! Thanks, BP
 

Bad Pilgrim

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
Yes
Day 11: Monteagudo de las Salinas - Cuenca, 42 kms

I made it to Cuenca! 🥵

I hadn't phoned for a place to stay either in Fuentes or Cuenca since I didn't know where I would stop today. I thought I would wait and see how I felt when I got to Fuentes (23 kms from Monteagudo).

Enough have been written about the stages Monteagudo - Fuentes, and Fuentes - Cuenca by many pilgrims. I don't know what to add. There are 23 silent kms to Fuentes, where you may run into wild boars or deer of you are lucky. I have walked this stage before so I threw away my maps and just relaxed!

New to me was the dog at the farm Navarramira, the only inhabited place on this stretch. He came running at me, standing on his hind legs with his paws on my chest to greet me. He jumped around me, or blocked my way so I had to shove him away to be able to proceed. That is when he would yank my hand with his jaws to get my attention. It was all for play, but if I was a doggo-phobe I would have dropped dead.

He ran off into the bushes from time to time, then ambushed me further down the road to repeat the procedure. I tried Vete (go away), A casa (go home) and Ya basta (that's enough) and he would momentarily calm down: he has heard those words before. He proudly walked with me all the way to the gates. He must have followed many a pilgrim already. Not a puppy, but probably a young one (2-3 years old) since he was playful and I haven't seen him before. If this is the new acquisition of the farm's owner to keep pilgrims off the property (along with the sign at the gates about police surveillance, ninjas and missile systems), he failed miserably. That dog won't hurt a fly.

See one picture below: the dog is oblivious about the deer in the fields!

In Fuentes I felt fine and decided to continue to Cuenca (21 more kms). I know about the albergue in Cuenca, but I understood I would be tired at arrival so I swiftly booked a hostal for a little more comfort. I know the albergue has its facilities as well. But running around searching for the keys, or waiting for someone to arrive with them... After more than 40 kms... I am lazy. I chose Hostal Residencia Castilla, 28 euros on Booking.

The stage Fuentes - Cuenca is also beautiful. Especially the first part with the lagoons outside Fuentes. Then a short walk uphill to a farm - the only ascent on this stage - where you must remember to look back at the lagoons and the rolling fields...

There is no more bar on this stage, as the bar in La Melgosa is closed and for sale. There are fountains in the small villages of Mohorte and La Melgosa. (I didn't try the one in La Melgosa though.)

I should have walked even longer but I decided to try the road: a shortcut into Cuenca. Outside La Melgosa, I was a bit hesitant towards this option. I thought I would get hit by a truck, cows would chase me, the Guardia Civil arrest me... But nothing happened. It is a walk on asphalt into an industrial suburb, and then another slog to reach the center of Cuenca. It must be a couple of kms shorter than the real Camino which makes a detour in the fields to avoid the carretera. I don't know... The asphalt option is clearly shorter than the Camino option. But you have to ask yourself if you want to do a slog on tarmac for more than 6 kms, at the end of a stage, while dodging the cars. Anyway, the shoulder is broad enough for walking and occasionally there is gravel on the left to step aside when the cars come hurling at you.

Here ends my Lana this time! I am already familiar with the rest, from Cuenca to Burgos. It is time to try something else...

Thanks for reading and I will be back soon! Bye!

Edit: I will make a summary and a final judgement of the Camino de la Requena further down!
 

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It was all for play, but if I was a doggo-phobe I would had dropped dead.
I am a doggie-phobe as I was bit by a rottweiler in the upper arm several years ago, and would have been petrified, if not dropped dead being alone with a rambunctious dog. That said, I love and enjoy friendly dogs, especially if they are with their owners.

But running around searching for the keys, or waiting for someone to arrive with them... After more than 40 kms... I am lazy.
Lazy?...I think you were just emotionally spent and tired!
I've been enjoying your lovely photos as I kind'a doubt I will ever be doing the Lana myself.
 

Bad Pilgrim

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
Yes
Ok, let’s start the guessing game. Since you say “new” that limits the choices. Maybe the Geira or the Caminho Portugues Interior? But somehow I think you are more of a “Spain guy”,so maybe the Olvidado?

I edited *new to else - English is not my forte (I keep editing my posts all the time...) Yes it will be in Spain and I am travelling today!

Finding train tickets in this country is a mess! I think I got the ones I need now. But with my usual bad luck, who knows where I will end up this evening, or where I will sleep.

My next route is pretty well travelled so I don't know if there is a need to post on the Forum. Even I get tired of my rambling sometimes... Maybe a shorter thread restricted to practical info.
 
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nycwalking

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
Ourense to Santiago (2019), CF: (2014, 2004, 2002, 2001). On to Fisterra, (2002, 4, 14).
I edited *new to else - English is not my forte (I keep editing my posts all the time...) Yes it will be in Spain and I am travelling today!

Finding train tickets in this country is a mess! I think I got the ones I need now. But with my usual bad luck, who knows where I will end up this evening, or where I will sleep.

My next route is pretty well travelled so I don't know if there is a need to post on the Forum. Even I get tired of my rambling sometimes... Maybe a shorter thread restricted to practical info.

Post next route: Please.

I am caregiving for foreseeable future. “Live on Camino” threads keep me going.

Add pics if you are able.

Buen camino.
 
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Bad Pilgrim

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
Yes
Camino de la Requena: Final verdict

General impression: I would definitely walk this Camino again! The towns are charming and the scenery is varied. It was even more entertaining than the walk from Alicante. Buñol, Requena and Utiel are beautiful towns.

Designation: Whenever I told the villagers I was walking the Camino de la Requena, they shook their heads and corrected me: it is the Camino de la Lana (from Valencia). According to them, the Requena is some other trail in the area. I like the thought of just calling it the Lana, to put it on par with the Lana from Alicante.

Planning: I had planned to walk it in 10 days as suggested by the guidebook. Finally I did it in 11. I would like to return to walk the stages I had intended to do. For example, Valencia - Loriguilla - Buñol - Siete Aguas would be a better way to divide the first three stages. I think 10 stages is adequate for a reasonably fit pilgrim. This makes the Camino de la Requena about as long as the branch coming from Alicante (11 stages to Monteagudo according to the guidebook).

Distances: The longest stage without accomodation is Cardenete - Monteagudo de las Salinas (28 kms). The pilgrim can divide the stages as he/she wishes during the first days from Valencia. This becomes more tricky the closer you get to Monteagudo de las Salinas. At the end I had no choice but to do stages of, for example, 28 or 33 kms. Then I walked even longer from Monteagudo to Cuenca, but there is no need to do this as you can split that in two stages.

Waymarking: Pretty good. I got lost only one or two times. More arrows are needed after Utiel; Fuenterrobles. There are cairns where previous pilgrims led me in the right direction and I made my contributions to thank them. We are not talking about heaps of stones that can deface the Camino but discreet, functional signs that are helpful in the hour of need.

Budget: I spent more money than I needed since I prefer private accomodation. Normally 30-40 euros, occasionally 20-30 euros. From Requena (half-way to Monteagudo de las Salinas) there are albergues de peregrinos on every stage. But I don't know what they look like except for in Cardenete. I don't want to scare away future pilgrims with the prices I have mentioned above. This Camino can be walked with less expenses.

From Monteagudo de las Salinas, the Camino continues to Burgos where it connects with the Camino Francés.

Bye for now!
 
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norelle

Member
Past OR future Camino
Camino Frances (2011 April, 2014 March) San Salvador, Primitivo, Finisterre, Muxia (June 2015) Del Norte (Sept/Oct 2016)
Thank you BP for sharing your journey!
Buen camino 👣
 
Past OR future Camino
Latest: Rota Vicentina '19; Portuguese '19.
Yes, thank you, BP. I enjoyed following along as you shared the wonderful, the good, and a few not so good moments. Glad you loved it overall and it sounds like you would have no hesitation in repeating it in the future.
 

Bad Pilgrim

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
Yes
Yes, thank you, BP. I enjoyed following along as you shared the wonderful, the good, and a few not so good moments. Glad you loved it overall and it sounds like you would have no hesitation in repeating it in the future.

I already miss it!

I should try it with more preparation, not in the heat of summer, and staying more dutifully in the albergues!

My wallet has been severely traumatized by this Camino. I have decided to focus on the albergues from now on...
 

Bad Pilgrim

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
Yes
Post next route: Please.

I am caregiving for foreseeable future. “Live on Camino” threads keep me going.

Add pics if you are able.

Buen camino.
Oh,

A few picks then. I will be back tomorrow in a new thread!

Tonight I sleep in a dorm!!! *aaaargh* 😱😱😱 Or a shared bedroom? Dormitory? It has been so long I don't even remember what it is called!
 
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