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Camino del Ebro from the mouth of Ebro to Gallur April / May

bjorgts

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
In Spain, France, Portugal, Germany since 2003
A report from Camino del Ebro from Ebro's estuary to Gallur in April / May.

General: The best thing about walking this route in April / May was the nature. It was so intensely green! And the flowering along the roads was amazing! There are many memorials from the Civil War from Tortosa and four to five days ahead. The Battle of Ebro was a terrible event in this area.

Here are comments on some points along the way. I say something about accommodation, but be aware that we did not stay in albergues this time. We are now 70 years old and have stayed at more than 200 albergues, so we prefer other options. J I will also comment on good places to eat.

Important point that you will find near the end of this description: The stretch Velilla de Ebro to Quinto! There is something confusing and something dangerous!!!

Ebro estuary: There is no public transport to the Ebro estuary. We took a cab. For me, it is important to start at the beginning. On this route, this beginning is the Mediterranean. We walked out to the Mirador del Zigurat with a nice view.

Deltebre - Amposta: The route goes via Sant Carles de la Rápita on the coast, but we chose to follow the Ebro from Deltebre directly to Amposta. We crossed the bridge in Deltebre and followed a walking path up the left side of the river. It was a nice hike! Good picnic areas down to the river along the way. Good Menu at La Sifoneria in Amposta.

Amposta - Tortosa: The route follows the irrigation canal. This canal ensures the lushness of the area, and gives all the orange groves enough water. No villages in between. Following a recommendation from “Peregrina 2000”, we stayed at the Parador in Tortosa. We have never done that in our 20 years of camino hiking, but when the pandemic hit us, I promised myself that if we ever returned to hiking in Spain, I would stay at the Parador in Tortosa!

Tortosa - Xerta: The route goes in city-like areas on the left side of the river upwards until you cross the railway in Jesús and are back at the irrigation canal. We went up for a lunch break in Aldover. There is a bar. Good Menu on the plaza of Xerta. We had planned to stay at Albergue Assut, but they only opened for groups, so it was closed. Then we ended up, as «Bad Pilgrim» did a year ago at Casa Ximenes - another day of luxury.

Xerta - Gandesa: The best day, but strenuous! Most of the long tunnels had lights now. Fontcalda did not have an open bar / restaurant. Too early in the spring? None of the other places along Via Verde were open either. When you leave the small river some distance after Fontcalda, there are some confusing arrows, but it went well. Stayed and ate at Hotel Piqué in Gandesa. I recommend the museum about the battle of Ebro. That was interesting.

The landscape that began with rice fields and orange groves now became Terra Alta with vineyards, almonds, olives, grain and some barren heather landscape. That also meant good local wine for our Menú del Dia in this area. J

Gandesa - Batea: We visited the museum in Gandesa before we left in the morning. It fit nicely with a short day. Nice scenery this day. Good Menu at the entrance to Batea, Miravall Restaurant. Batea has a very nice old town. See it!

Batea - Fabara: Varied, beautiful landscape as the day before. This is a low rainfall area, so they are dependent on the water from the irrigation canals. Some are from the days of the Arabs. Bar Sport on the plaza in Fabara made good Plato Combinado for us, and breakfast the next morning. Some young people said there was another accommodation option, but we only found Teresa Martin's apartment (687 292 532). It was fine to stay there. Fabara has a text on the memorial to the Civil War outside the church which was which was for reflection. Look at it if you know a little Spanish. The city also has a Roman mausoleum outside the city. We chose not to go there.

Fabara - Caspe: This day goes first in the heights of the Sierra de Caspe, then down a long valley and a little up again to Caspe. Nice pilgrim monument on the hill before the city. Stayed and ate well at Hostal Surtidor.

Chiprana: Here we stayed quite cheaply and very good in Las Saladas, run by two sisters. There was fiesta in town the day we were there and no bar or restaurantes were open, but the sisters made good Plato Combinado when we arrived, bocadillos for the evening and breakfast the next morning.

Chiprana - Escatrón: Note that early this day, when you have crossed the bridge some distance after Chiprana, and have turned left from the main road, there was a stone with a yellow arrow that was in the opposite direction of where we were going. But it is relatively obvious that it is wrong. This day you walked through one of Europe's largest solar parks. In Escatrón we stayed at Pension Mayor. We ate our Menú down by the river at Club Náutico Escatrón.

Escatrón - Alborge: If you have time, the Monasterio de Rueda just after Escatrón is worth a visit. We were given a tour by a very good guide. Ebro is a long collection of turns in this area, and you walk over a ridge and down again to the river at Sástago. Since we were going to stay in Alborge, where we could not count on buying food, we ate Menú in Sástago at Hostal Restaurante Monasterio de Rueda. Alborge has a Casa Rural. There is also a bar-shop, so you can probably get some basic food.

Alborge - Quinto: Here's a problem and a danger. But first: Alforque had a closed bar. Velilla had two closed bars. We could have gotten something in Gelsa.

The problem: From Velilla we got problems. According to the guide and my map of Spain, we should walk on a camino to the left of the main road just after we had left the Velilla. The place where we were going to go down to the left was easy to find. We also saw an old arrow. But then it was nothing. We tried a fairly long distance to follow the position, but there was no path / camino, only mounds of grass, mounds of earth, machined soil. Hopeless! Luckily we finally made up our minds and got back up (to the right) to the main road (CV 661). When we followed this road to Gelsa, we saw that the entire large agricultural plain between Velilla and Gelsa had been cultivated. The old dirt roads, which I saw on my map, and which you can also still see on Google Maps, was no longer there, including the one we should walk on. The agricultural areas were much larger now. I also had a GPS track that went much further out to the left where we tried to take off. It looks like it might be on the edge of the field, all the way along Ebro, but we saw no arrows. I have not found any info that the route has been changed, but it must be. Has anyone else found anything about this?

The danger: Once you have crossed the bridge over Ebro after Gelsa, a new bridge will cross the railway. We looked and looked for arrows, because it was quite clear that we should not walk up the bridge towards Quinto, but we found none, so we went over the bridge. DO NOT DO IT! It was narrow, lots of traffic and dangerous! It did not get any better on the stretch further on to Quinto. This is what we should do - arrows or no arrows. Exit on the left side of the road just before the bridge and go under it (A-221). Follow the gravel road that goes on the right side of the railway almost into Quinto.

Quinto: Stayed at Pension Plaza. We looked for a place to eat, but saw nothing. A man was friendly and showed us the way to Bar Restaurante Arco Iris. It was packed, but we got a seat. We like the restaurants where workers eat their Comida. There you can count on getting a good and affordable Menú.

Quinto - Fuentes de Ebro - Burgo de Ebro - Zaragoza: To and from along the railway. Hostal Texas in Fuentes had nice rooms and good Menú, plenty of workers eating there too. The next day we walked to Burgo de Ebro and took a bus to Zaragoza.

Zaragoza - Alagón: A day with many small towns. Great willingness to lead us on dirt roads outside the most inhabited and trafficked areas. We took a rest in Sobradiel on a bench by the church, nice place. In Torres de Berrelllén, we had tortilla on the plaza.

Alagón - Gallur: Three small towns along the river with about 4 km between each. In Luceni there are several bars, so there we had a lunch break. In Gallur, the Camino Castellano-Aragonés begins, which we continued on. Look for comments on the first days of this route, and photo video https://www.caminodesantiago.me/community/threads/gallur-tarazona-may-2022.74965/

In a few days you will be able to see my photo video from Camino del Ebro here.
 
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Bad Pilgrim

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
Yes
The problem: From Velilla we got problems. According to the guide and my map of Spain, we should walk on a camino to the left of the main road just after we had left the Velilla. The place where we were going to go down to the left was easy to find. We also saw an old arrow. But then it was nothing. We tried a fairly long distance to follow the position, but there was no path / camino, only mounds of grass, mounds of earth, machined soil. Hopeless! Luckily we finally made up our minds and got back up (to the right) to the main road (CV 661). When we followed this road to Gelsa, we saw that the entire large agricultural plain between Velilla and Gelsa had been cultivated. The old dirt roads, which I saw on my map, and which you can also still see on Google Maps, was no longer there, including the one we should walk on. The agricultural areas were much larger now. I also had a GPS track that went much further out to the left where we tried to take off. It looks like it might be on the edge of the field, all the way along Ebro, but we saw no arrows. I have not found any info that the route has been changed, but it must be. Has anyone else found anything about this?

I know exactly where and what you mean. I did the same thing last year! I followed the arrows - then the camino evaporated in front of my eyes, amongst those "mounds of grass" that you mention. I walked in late June, so I imagine the vegetation to be even worse then. Nope I didn't see any other arrows either. I also got back to the main road because there was no alternative - at least no one that I could see.
 

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