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Camino Must See

Richard DeMerchant

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Portuguese Coastal Route (2019)
Camino Frances (July 2020)
We are hiking the Camino Frances from SJPDP to Santiago starting June 28th. In our research, we have come across a few "must-see" places and things on the Camino or just off the trail. I was hoping to get some suggestions from other pilgrims of places and things to see. For example, we would like to see the octagonal church at Eunate which is a bit off the path from what we can tell. Any suggestions?
 

Richard DeMerchant

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Portuguese Coastal Route (2019)
Camino Frances (July 2020)
Hi David. Eunate is not really off the path. Yes, you have to walk about 2km to the left, from Muruzabal, but once you can tear yourself away, you just follow the Aragonés route that meets there, into Puente la Reina. Buen camino!
Thank you. That is helpful.
 
Camino(s) past & future
CF SJPdP to SdC
(May 2015)
CF Sarria to SdC
(May 2016)
CF SJPDP-SdC
(Apr/May 2018)
VdlP (2022)
Hi David. Eunate is not really off the path. Yes, you have to walk about 2km to the left, from Muruzabal, but once you can tear yourself away, you just follow the Aragonés route that meets there, into Puente la Reina. Buen camino!
We did that last time. A really nice detour!

It's hard though to recommend things. It depends what you like. maybe suggest some 'elements' you'd like to experience?

The Cathedral in Leon? That kind of left us cold sadly. It's more like a Museum full of tourists.
The small churches along the way provided much more memorable moments for me.

Food? The Roast Lamb in Burgos!
Though the cafe on the corner in Zubiri does good lamb too. or did last year...

Places to stay? Depends on budget.
A must for me is San Zoilo Monastery! Just google it.

Though places to stay and eat, can change over time.
Depends on the staff, time of year etc etc.

But don't fret. It's all magical.
And if you feel you missed something...........keep going back ;)

Meeting David Vidal en route to Astorga.
Is he still there folks, or did he really finally leave last year?
 

jungleboy

Nick
Camino(s) past & future
Francés 2017
Primitivo 2018
Madrid 2019
Kumano Kodo 2019
Firstly, just one thing to be aware of is that walking a camino, especially your first one, is not easy. You may find that you have expectations of arriving in a town and doing all this sightseeing but that you're just too exhausted and need to rest instead. That often happened to my wife and I and we are 'cultural tourists' (for lack of a better term) in general. The Eunate detour is an example of something we wanted to do but just didn't have the energy, especially as my wife was struggling with plantar fasciitis.

That said, apart from the usual Burgos/Leon etc sights, two other places that really stood out for me were the ruins of the monastery of San Antón (the most evocative place on the Francés for me, just before Castrojeriz) and the church of San Martín in Fromista with its amazing Romanesque capitals.

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Some other less famous, and slightly random, sights that I also remember enjoying included: a small, octagonal church (Romanesque with Mudejar elements) that we passed on our seventh day from SJPdP but whose name I did not record; the ruins of the pilgrim complex outside Navarrete (great for reflection); and the ruins of the Roman settlement at Castromaior in Galicia (great at sunrise when you're the only ones there!). There are also some beautiful Romanesque sandstone churches on the Meseta apart from San Antón and San Martín. I remember writing at the time: "As the landscape becomes more and more monotonous, the churches become more and more interesting."

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Kathar1na

Member
Camino(s) past & future
To Santiago and beyond (from home; Voie de Tours; Camino Francés; Biskaya; Manche; Via Brabantica)
Some other less famous, and slightly random, sights that I also remember enjoying included: a small, octagonal church (Romanesque with Mudejar elements) that we passed on our seventh day from SJPdP but whose name I did not record; the ruins of the pilgrim complex outside Navarrete (great for reflection);
It's the Iglesia del Santo Sepulcro in Torres del Rio. The ruins of the Hospice of San Juan de Acre are just before Navarrete. I liked it that you put a spoiler alert on your links, @jungleboy. When one has already seen detailed photos of these monuments and sites on the screen numerous time beforehand, a lot of the joy of discovery and the joy of seeing with one's own eyes for the first time is taken away from the experience.

To anyone who is into that kind of thing, I'd recommend the excellent guidebook by Gitliz and Davidson. Brierley is pretty useless for this kind of information, and so are many of the other popular Camino Frances guidebooks. They will of course list major sites like San Martín in Fromista and Eunate but provide little information or little accurate information. Gitliz/Davidson exists in electronic form, with a wealth of information, and the more important stuff is marked in bold. Recommended.

It always amuses me a little when posters say that they were "playing tourist" for a while or refer to themselves as also being "cultural tourists". I understand that people frame their camino walking quite differently from each other and that's ok for me, they don't have to stare at old stones as far as I am concerned. @jungleboy mentioned the ruins just before Navarrete and called it a great place for reflection. I, too, walked down to the small complex and sat there for a while and tried to figure out, with the help of G/D and the info on site, what it looked like when it was whole, who lived there, who travelled through there, the passing of time and the changes it brings, lots of things to reflect upon. It's often small places like this where you have a chance to connect to what this Pilgrimage Road once was and why it is still there.

Sorry for writing a long comment instead of posting a succinct list of my favourites, @Richard DeMerchant. What I'm trying to say is this: there are no "Must Sees" on the Way to Santiago. Don't make a list to tick off the "important sites" or the "hidden treasures". Leave room for making your own discoveries from one day to the next. I can tell you from my own experience that you can't see and experience everything you would have wanted to see and experience anyway. Buen camino!
 
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Kathar1na

Member
Camino(s) past & future
To Santiago and beyond (from home; Voie de Tours; Camino Francés; Biskaya; Manche; Via Brabantica)
BTW, Eunate looked very tempting, it still does, but the direct path to Puente la Reina with fewer kilometres looked even more tempting. The shorter path won. Santo Domingo de Silos and Samos didn't make the cut either. I survived it.
 

Stroller

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Norte (2015), Frances (2016)
I will refrain from recommendations except that, one of the delights of walking lies in serendipity, the accidental finding of things, letting small wonders reveal themselves shyly at the speed of travel, a human speed. Too much research spoils the mystery of what lies around the next corner.
 

biarritzdon

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF11, CF12, CP13, CF14, CA15, S.Anton15, CF&CI15
Ditch Pig16, CF&CP17, CdN18, CM18, CF18, LePuy19
The ruins of Castro de Castromaior near Ventas de Naron as well as the Roman villas in the Meseta near Ledigos. The best of the Roman villas is the farthest one off of the path but has some well preserved mosaics.
 

jefferyonthecamino

http://www.barrerabooks.com/ - Guidebooks
Camino(s) past & future
Francés (1994) & (2013 - 2019)
Portugués (2015 - 2019)
de Madrid (2019)
Argentino/Inglés (2020)
We are hiking the Camino Frances from SJPDP to Santiago starting June 28th. In our research, we have come across a few "must-see" places and things on the Camino or just off the trail. I was hoping to get some suggestions from other pilgrims of places and things to see. For example, we would like to see the octagonal church at Eunate which is a bit off the path from what we can tell. Any suggestions?
pretty much everything to see, you will run into, or there will be lots of signage taking you there.

that said, many pilgrims miss out on some awesome experiences because of time, budget or other.
For example: staying at least once at a Parador is an awesome experience, and there are five on the Camino Francés. or visiting a wine bodega in the Rioja region (you are guaranteed a lot of wine at the follow up tasting), or visiting the Atapuerca archaeological site, or going on a proper pintxo-spree in Pamplona with the locals (and tourists), or visiting the Panteón de los Reyes in León, or going the extra mile and spending 30 euros on a proper lunch/dinner, or visiting the Castle in Ponferrada, or finding time to swim in the river at Molinaseca or Villafranca...
 

amancio

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances, Norte, Primit, Salvador, Portug, Arag, Ingles, VdlP, Leban-Vadin, Fisterra, Invierno, LePuy
BTW, Eunate looked very tempting, it still does, but the direct path to Puente la Reina with fewer kilometres looked even more tempting. The shorter path won. Santo Domingo de Silos and Samos didn't make the cut either. I survived it.
Santo Domingo de Silos is a looong way from the Francés, I am afraid, not a detour. You might be referring to San Millán de la Cogolla in Rioja, perhaps?

As to the general topic of this whole thread, detours worth the detour.... I would recommend just keep your eyes open, you cannot organize a Camino as in the movie "If It's Tuesday, This Must Be Belgium ", let it flow before your eyes, just keep your eyes open and give some room to surprise!

To me, the most amazing detour ever was "Foz de Lumbier" in camino aragonés, and I did not even know such a detour existed two days before reaching it!

Buen camino, whichever way you decide to make it!
 

Kathar1na

Member
Camino(s) past & future
To Santiago and beyond (from home; Voie de Tours; Camino Francés; Biskaya; Manche; Via Brabantica)
Santo Domingo de Silos is a looong way from the Francés, I am afraid, not a detour. You might be referring to San Millán de la Cogolla in Rioja, perhaps?
No, I did indeed mean Santo Domingo de Silos as it is probably THE monastery I would have liked to visit, possibly by bus, taxi or car there and back. Although I'm an every-step-of-the-way-on-foot person I also felt that S.D.d.S. is pretty much part of the Pilgrimage Road to Santiago, despite the fact that it's a 1 hour car ride to the south of Burgos. My consolation prize is the cloister of the church San Pedro de la Rúa in Estella ...
 

Camino Chrissy

Take one step forward...then keep on walking..
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 2015;
Norte/Primitivo 2016;
Frances 2017;
Le Puy 2018;
Portuguese/FishermanTr. 2019
Meeting David Vidal en route to Astorga.
Is he still there folks, or did he really finally leave last year?
I have read in recent months here on the Forum that David is back! The friend who had taken over for him in his absence had left, so David returned. I hope this information is accurate. A favorite stop for me on my way to Astorga...like an oasis in the desert!
 

MarkyD

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Francés 31/08/2018 - 20/10/2018
We did that last time. A really nice detour!

It's hard though to recommend things. It depends what you like. maybe suggest some 'elements' you'd like to experience?

The Cathedral in Leon? That kind of left us cold sadly. It's more like a Museum full of tourists.
The small churches along the way provided much more memorable moments for me.

Food? The Roast Lamb in Burgos!
Though the cafe on the corner in Zubiri does good lamb too. or did last year...

Places to stay? Depends on budget.
A must for me is San Zoilo Monastery! Just google it.

Though places to stay and eat, can change over time.
Depends on the staff, time of year etc etc.

But don't fret. It's all magical.
And if you feel you missed something...........keep going back ;)

Meeting David Vidal en route to Astorga.
Is he still there folks, or did he really finally leave last year?
Hi Robo, I popped into Camp David around Easter 2019, en route to visit some of my family by car (trip from home, Madrid, to Villafranca del Bierzo via León, Hospital de Órbigo, Astorga, Cruz de Ferro, Molinaseca, Ponferrada). There was nobody in residence at the time, but a man and his mother were also visiting, they owned the land (or some of it) and told me that David had left a few weeks prior to their visit. They told me another person was thinking of taking over the role of the camp resident, but wasn't due for a few weeks, an Italian man I believe. The camp was still there, but closed up and in need of TLC.
Hopefully, since then someone has taken over as the ambassador of Camp David to once again spread the love and joy that David had done for several years. It certainly was a special "pit-stop" when I stopped there for an hour on the 2nd October 2018, David was really taking care of the place and all who chose to stop there. The hammocks at the back were a wonderful way to rest and chill out and just watch the pilgrims coming and going through the camp.
 

Camino Chrissy

Take one step forward...then keep on walking..
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 2015;
Norte/Primitivo 2016;
Frances 2017;
Le Puy 2018;
Portuguese/FishermanTr. 2019
The Eunate detour is an example of something we wanted to do but just didn't have the energy, especially as my wife was struggling with plantar fasciitis.
I really wanted to get to Eunate too, on both my Frances walks. Although in no no pain from any injuries, I was still too pooped from walking and couldn't muster the perseverance to take the detour. Reading that the church was closed didn't help.

Another detour I've failed to do both times is the detour to Samos...a regretable decision.

That said, in Castrojerez I hiked to the castle at the top of the steep hill and was rewarded with awesome castle ruins and outstanding views! I did it after we'd checked in to the albergue for the night. Although tired, the day's walk was already behind me, which I think helped my attitude.
 

Kathar1na

Member
Camino(s) past & future
To Santiago and beyond (from home; Voie de Tours; Camino Francés; Biskaya; Manche; Via Brabantica)
I have read in recent months here on the Forum that David is back! The friend who had taken over for him in his absence had left, so David returned. I hope this information is accurate.
I vaguely remember having read (on a reliable source) that David of the Casa de los Dioses came back for just a short time around Easter 2019 and then returned more permanently this autumn 2019. I just watched two short videos on FB, posted in November 2019, where he plants a tree and stands on top of his roof and talks about repairing the roof. He's got a beard now.

It is one of the places where I wish I had not read and seen so much about beforehand. Although we exchanged a few words and he gave me a good-bye hug, all this knowledge about him and his place that I had already acquired before it finally appeared on the horizon made it feel much like a routine stop ...
 
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Camino Chrissy

Take one step forward...then keep on walking..
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 2015;
Norte/Primitivo 2016;
Frances 2017;
Le Puy 2018;
Portuguese/FishermanTr. 2019
Good to know, @Kathar1na. Thanks for adding the additional information! David is loved by many.
 

Camino Chrissy

Take one step forward...then keep on walking..
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 2015;
Norte/Primitivo 2016;
Frances 2017;
Le Puy 2018;
Portuguese/FishermanTr. 2019
Sorry to disagree but the Cathedral of León is beautiful, and also many of its buildings, all in all a most beautiful city
I totally agree with you! Leon and its outstanding cathedral were true highlights for me and has provided great memories for me! The tour was fascinating with interesting tidbits of information!
 

Camino Chrissy

Take one step forward...then keep on walking..
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 2015;
Norte/Primitivo 2016;
Frances 2017;
Le Puy 2018;
Portuguese/FishermanTr. 2019
BTW, Eunate looked very tempting, it still does, but the direct path to Puente la Reina with fewer kilometres looked even more tempting. The shorter path won. Santo Domingo de Silos and Samos didn't make the cut either. I survived it.
Your story is my story.
 

Kathar1na

Member
Camino(s) past & future
To Santiago and beyond (from home; Voie de Tours; Camino Francés; Biskaya; Manche; Via Brabantica)
Your story is my story.
I hiked up to the castle of Castrojeriz, too. And also up to the castle of Monjardín.

It looks like David returned in September 2019 and took over from the Italian guy Luca. This is one of the places that you won't "discover" if you take the other option to Astorga along the road which quite a few people did when I walked.

Casa de los Dioses.jpg.
 

NorthernLight

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Le Puy to Santiago via the Frances 2012-2013. EPW2015
Aragonese & Frances 2016
Burgos to Muxia 2017
... the Roman villas in the Meseta near Ledigos. The best of the Roman villas is the farthest one off of the path but has some well preserved mosaics.
Where are these? I don’t see them marked on either of my go-to maps but perhaps I’m not looking in the right place.

BTW, Eunate looked very tempting, it still does, but the direct path to Puente la Reina with fewer kilometres looked even more tempting. The shorter path won. Santo Domingo de Silos and Samos didn't make the cut either. I survived it.
The next time, do the Eunate variante and plan to stay in Obanos rather than Puenta la Reina. That saves you the daily km.

Likewise Samos can be viewed as a night stop rather than just extra km to Sarria.
😊
 

VNwalking

Wandering in big circles
Camino(s) past & future
Francés ('14/'15)
San Olav/CF ('16)
Baztanés/CF ('17)
Ingles ('18)
Vasco/CF/Invierno ('19)
BTW, Eunate looked very tempting, it still does, but the direct path to Puente la Reina with fewer kilometres looked even more tempting. The shorter path won. Santo Domingo de Silos and Samos didn't make the cut either. I survived it.
Eunate is an easy detour, and SDdS is a bit harder.
Both are wonderful, well worth a visit. Samos was (for me) less evocative.
What you can do for SDdS is plan to arrive in in Burgos with enought time to take the 5:00 PM bus to SDdS, which gets you there in time for vespers. Spend the night, and take the morning bus back to Burgos. That way you'll have the whole day ahead of you in Burgos if you plan a day of rest there - or just keep walking.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Us:Camino Frances, 2015 Me:Catalan/Aragonese, 2019
The detour to Eunate is about 2.5 km and then it is about 2.5 km along the Camino Aragonese to the Camino Frances again. That keeps you from walking about 2 km on the CF and so the trip adds only about 3 km to your walk to Puente la Reina.

In Leon there is the gothic cathedral of course but during the camino I found a great appreciation for the romanesque period. The camino in Leon passes the Basilica of San Isidoro and attached to that is a museum that conatains books and other objects of that period but there were two things that absolutely fascinated me, the Royal Pantheon and the chalice of Dona Urraca, one of the Holy Grails that Europe is so full of. The Royal Pantheon is sometimes called the "Sistine Chapel of Romanesque art" and a recent book documented the chalice (and did such a job that it might be off display for awhile.)
 

Camino Chrissy

Take one step forward...then keep on walking..
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 2015;
Norte/Primitivo 2016;
Frances 2017;
Le Puy 2018;
Portuguese/FishermanTr. 2019
I have posted this before, but in my tour of the Leon cathedral the fact that has stayed with me the most was this...Because of structural damage repairs needed in the interior ceiling that started a few hundred years ago, all of the thousands of pieces of stained glass were removed, marked and boxed up for fifty years, then reassembled again to what we see today. The patience that was needed to accomplish such an overwhelming task is totally amazing to me!
 

biarritzdon

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF11, CF12, CP13, CF14, CA15, S.Anton15, CF&CI15
Ditch Pig16, CF&CP17, CdN18, CM18, CF18, LePuy19
I have read in recent months here on the Forum that David is back! The friend who had taken over for him in his absence had left, so David returned. I hope this information is accurate. A favorite stop for me on my way to Astorga...like an oasis in the desert!
I think he was in Rabanal helping Kim do some work on the Stone Boat.
 

biarritzdon

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF11, CF12, CP13, CF14, CA15, S.Anton15, CF&CI15
Ditch Pig16, CF&CP17, CdN18, CM18, CF18, LePuy19
Where are these? I don’t see them marked on either of my go-to maps but perhaps I’m not looking in the right place.
The lesser of the two is in Quintanilla de la Cueza (you can see the location on Brierley's Stage 17 map) it is near the N-120 and if I remember correctly there is a very small sign showing the detour going south from the Camino before Ledigos. The grander of the two is Villa de la Olmeda north of the Camino detouring between Ledigos and Terradillos de los Templarios towards Saldana (located at Latitude 42* 28' 50" and Longitude 4* 44' 11") It is spectacular peak at the lavish life on the Meseta in the 4th c., the Romans apparently had wild animals they imported from Africa as well as indoor plumbing.
 

NorthernLight

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Le Puy to Santiago via the Frances 2012-2013. EPW2015
Aragonese & Frances 2016
Burgos to Muxia 2017
The lesser of the two is in Quintanilla de la Cueza (you can see the location on Brierley's Stage 17 map) it is near the N-120 and if I remember correctly there is a very small sign showing the detour going south from the Camino before Ledigos. The grander of the two is Villa de la Olmeda north of the Camino detouring between Ledigos and Terradillos de los Templarios towards Saldana (located at Latitude 42* 28' 50" and Longitude 4* 44' 11") It is spectacular peak at the lavish life on the Meseta in the 4th c., the Romans apparently had wild animals they imported from Africa as well as indoor plumbing.
The first of these I’ve contemplated as you could follow the fairly busy N-120 from Carrion to get there. The other I now need to read up on. Thank you.
 

Richard DeMerchant

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Portuguese Coastal Route (2019)
Camino Frances (July 2020)
We did that last time. A really nice detour!

It's hard though to recommend things. It depends what you like. maybe suggest some 'elements' you'd like to experience?

The Cathedral in Leon? That kind of left us cold sadly. It's more like a Museum full of tourists.
The small churches along the way provided much more memorable moments for me.

Food? The Roast Lamb in Burgos!
Though the cafe on the corner in Zubiri does good lamb too. or did last year...

Places to stay? Depends on budget.
A must for me is San Zoilo Monastery! Just google it.

Though places to stay and eat, can change over time.
Depends on the staff, time of year etc etc.

But don't fret. It's all magical.
And if you feel you missed something...........keep going back ;)

Meeting David Vidal en route to Astorga.
Is he still there folks, or did he really finally leave last year?
Thanks for the info. We have a wide range of interests and appreciate your suggestions. We did the Coastal Route last year but did not sightsee much and wanted to have a list of potential things to see and do on this trip. Our local Canadian Company of Pilgrims group here has been good for ideas but always nice to get more prospectives.
 

Richard DeMerchant

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Portuguese Coastal Route (2019)
Camino Frances (July 2020)
Firstly, just one thing to be aware of is that walking a camino, especially your first one, is not easy. You may find that you have expectations of arriving in a town and doing all this sightseeing but that you're just too exhausted and need to rest instead. That often happened to my wife and I and we are 'cultural tourists' (for lack of a better term) in general. The Eunate detour is an example of something we wanted to do but just didn't have the energy, especially as my wife was struggling with plantar fasciitis.

That said, apart from the usual Burgos/Leon etc sights, two other places that really stood out for me were the ruins of the monastery of San Antón (the most evocative place on the Francés for me, just before Castrojeriz) and the church of San Martín in Fromista with its amazing Romanesque capitals.


Some other less famous, and slightly random, sights that I also remember enjoying included: a small, octagonal church (Romanesque with Mudejar elements) that we passed on our seventh day from SJPdP but whose name I did not record; the ruins of the pilgrim complex outside Navarrete (great for reflection); and the ruins of the Roman settlement at Castromaior in Galicia (great at sunrise when you're the only ones there!). There are also some beautiful Romanesque sandstone churches on the Meseta apart from San Antón and San Martín. I remember writing at the time: "As the landscape becomes more and more monotonous, the churches become more and more interesting."

These look awesome. Thanks for sharing. We loved the architecture in Portugal last year.
 

Richard DeMerchant

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Portuguese Coastal Route (2019)
Camino Frances (July 2020)
The detour to Eunate is about 2.5 km and then it is about 2.5 km along the Camino Aragonese to the Camino Frances again. That keeps you from walking about 2 km on the CF and so the trip adds only about 3 km to your walk to Puente la Reina.

In Leon there is the gothic cathedral of course but during the camino I found a great appreciation for the romanesque period. The camino in Leon passes the Basilica of San Isidoro and attached to that is a museum that conatains books and other objects of that period but there were two things that absolutely fascinated me, the Royal Pantheon and the chalice of Dona Urraca, one of the Holy Grails that Europe is so full of. The Royal Pantheon is sometimes called the "Sistine Chapel of Romanesque art" and a recent book documented the chalice (and did such a job that it might be off display for awhile.)
Thank you. I had not heard of these.
 

biarritzdon

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF11, CF12, CP13, CF14, CA15, S.Anton15, CF&CI15
Ditch Pig16, CF&CP17, CdN18, CM18, CF18, LePuy19
The first of these I’ve contemplated as you could follow the fairly busy N-120 from Carrion to get there. The other I now need to read up on. Thank you.
If you are worried about the N-120 from Carrion, there is the alternative path I suggested someplace before Ledigos or you could back track on the N-120 from Terradillos, it's not that far to go.
 

lindam

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances, VDLP, Invierno, Portuguese, Madrid, Ingles, Fisterra, Muxia, Catalan/Aragones/Loyola Norte
When you get to Villafrana del Bierzo, you will have three different options. If you are feeling energetic, I would highly recommend that you take a route known as the Dragonte. It is a wonderful, but challenging, route not to be missed! Certainly remains as one of my all-time favourite days while walking many Camino routes. You can find very up-to-date and detailed information about this route on the FB group page: Friends of Dragonte. I walked this route in 2018 and still have vivid memories of the spectacular views and beautiful surroundings with very few fellow pilgrims. If you decide to walk this route, I can highly recommend that you stay in Albergue Leo in Villafranca del Bierzo as they are quite knowledgeable about the route and have been involved in the route's regeneration. As a bonus, when we told them that we were referred to them by the FB group, they gave us complementary drinks on arrival!
 

Richard DeMerchant

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Portuguese Coastal Route (2019)
Camino Frances (July 2020)
It's the Iglesia del Santo Sepulcro in Torres del Rio. The ruins of the Hospice of San Juan de Acre are just before Navarrete. I liked it that you put a spoiler alert on your links, @jungleboy. When one has already seen detailed photos of these monuments and sites on the screen numerous time beforehand, a lot of the joy of discovery and the joy of seeing with one's own eyes for the first time is taken away from the experience.

To anyone who is into that kind of thing, I'd recommend the excellent guidebook by Gitliz and Davidson. Brierley is pretty useless for this kind of information, and so are many of the other popular Camino Frances guidebooks. They will of course list major sites like San Martín in Fromista and Eunate but provide little information or little accurate information. Gitliz/Davidson exists in electronic form, with a wealth of information, and the more important stuff is marked in bold. Recommended.

It always amuses me a little when posters say that they were "playing tourist" for a while or refer to themselves as also being "cultural tourists". I understand that people frame their camino walking quite differently from each other and that's ok for me, they don't have to stare at old stones as far as I am concerned. @jungleboy mentioned the ruins just before Navarrete and called it a great place for reflection. I, too, walked down to the small complex and sat there for a while and tried to figure out, with the help of G/D and the info on site, what it looked like when it was whole, who lived there, who travelled through there, the passing of time and the changes it brings, lots of things to reflect upon. It's often small places like this where you have a chance to connect to what this Pilgrimage Road once was and why it is still there.

Sorry for writing a long comment instead of posting a succinct list of my favourites, @Richard DeMerchant. What I'm trying to say is this: there are no "Must Sees" on the Way to Santiago. Don't make a list to tick off the "important sites" or the "hidden treasures". Leave room for making your own discoveries from one day to the next. I can tell you from my own experience that you can't see and experience everything you would have wanted to see and experience anyway. Buen camino!
Great advice. We don't plan to have a big list but there are some sites we wish we would have known about on the Coastal route last year so we could have chosen to see them. We really enjoyed the Variante Espiritual for example which we did not plan to take but found out about just before we left. Thanks for the post.
 

NorthernLight

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Le Puy to Santiago via the Frances 2012-2013. EPW2015
Aragonese & Frances 2016
Burgos to Muxia 2017
If you are worried about the N-120 from Carrion, there is the alternative path I suggested someplace before Ledigos or you could back track on the N-120 from Terradillos, it's not that far to go.
3.4 km from Calzadilla de la Cueza by footpaths according to maps.me
 

biarritzdon

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF11, CF12, CP13, CF14, CA15, S.Anton15, CF&CI15
Ditch Pig16, CF&CP17, CdN18, CM18, CF18, LePuy19
The Iglesia del Santo Sepulcro in Torres del Rio is only open at certain times each day. It is a spectacular structure used as light beacon a night for early pilgrims to follow. It is one of the Templar's finest building based on the octagonal plan of many early Christian chapels throughout Europe and the Middle East.
 

Hugh Larkin

Perpetual Wanderer
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 2014
Sanabria 2018
Pieterpad 2018
Kumano Kodo (202??)
So much to see and soooo little time to experience it all. I also recommend downloading the ebook version of Gitlitz and Davidsons’ book, “The Pilgrimage Road to Santiago”. I used it daily for making notes for the next day’s walk so we could enjoy the Camino’s history on a local basis.
Buen Camino,
Hugh
 

Nancy Crombie

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Portuguese (2015), Camino Ingles (2019)
We are hiking the Camino Frances from SJPDP to Santiago starting June 28th. In our research, we have come across a few "must-see" places and things on the Camino or just off the trail. I was hoping to get some suggestions from other pilgrims of places and things to see. For example, we would like to see the octagonal church at Eunate which is a bit off the path from what we can tell. Any suggestions?
If you're wanting a quieter Camino, I would recommend taking a backroad of the Camino and staying a night at the albergue municipal in Calzadilla de los Hermanillos. This detour is between Mansilla de las Mulas (El Burgo Ranero) and Calzada del Coto (Sahagun). I was a hospitalera there in late May, and we were never full up. There's a great restaurant in town, a small church, some Roman ruins, and a nice little store where you can pick up supplies.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Lots ;0)
St. Jean Pied-de-Port: * Les Pyrénées
Huarte: P: Asador Zubiando
Ilarratz/Urdaitz: ** El Molino de Urdaniz
Pamplona: Rodero; Europa; B Abaco; P Letyana; P Baserriberri; P Enekorri; P Alhambra; P Guria; P Bodegón Sarria.
Logrono: * Ikaro; Kiro Sushi; B La Cocina de Ramón; P Umm; P La Galeria; P Tastavin; P Tondeluna;Restaurante Marqués de Riscal
Santo Domingo de la Calzada: P Los Caballeros
(Ezkaray, 14km Santo Domingo de la Calzada): ** El Portal P Casa Masip; Echaurren Tradición
Burgos: * Cobo Vintage; B La Fábrica; P Puerta Real; P Blue Gallery; P Casa Ojeda; P La Favorita
Fromista: P Hosteria de los Palmeros
Villacázar de Sirga: P Mesón de Villasirga
Leon: * Cocinandos * Pablo B Becook B LAV P Koi P Clandestino
Astorga: B Las Termas
Castrillo de los Polvazares: P Casa Coscolo
Carracedelo: P La Tronera
Santiago de Campostella: * Casa Marcelo; A Tafona; B A Horta d’Obradoiro; B Ghalpón Abastos; B Café de Altamira; P Manso; P Auga e Sal; P A Maceta; P Taberna Abastos; P Don Quijote; P Pedro Roca.


I've left my favourites off this list for obvious reasons otherwise it would include La Curiosa in Mansilla de las Mulas ;)
 

MarkyD

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Francés 31/08/2018 - 20/10/2018
We are hiking the Camino Frances from SJPDP to Santiago starting June 28th. In our research, we have come across a few "must-see" places and things on the Camino or just off the trail. I was hoping to get some suggestions from other pilgrims of places and things to see. For example, we would like to see the octagonal church at Eunate which is a bit off the path from what we can tell. Any suggestions?
As you walk through the village of Castrojeríz, it's easy to not notice "La Casa de Silencio" - as I did in 2018. However, while working as a volunteer in an albergue in Castrojeriz in September 2019, I found time to explore the town in more depth. As well as the wonderful churches, the local people, the plaza mayor, the castle on the hill and walking through he ruins of San Anton and speaking to the Hospitalero of its albergue donativo (about 2km before reaching Castrojeríz); the jewel in the crown for me was spending hours of quiet reflection in La Casa de Silencio.
 

trecile

Camino Addict
Camino(s) past & future
Francés (2016 & 2017), Norte (2018), Francés-Salvador-Norte (2019), Portuguese (2019)
If you're wanting a quieter Camino, I would recommend taking a backroad of the Camino and staying a night at the albergue municipal in Calzadilla de los Hermanillos. This detour is between Mansilla de las Mulas (El Burgo Ranero) and Calzada del Coto (Sahagun). I was a hospitalera there in late May, and we were never full up. There's a great restaurant in town, a small church, some Roman ruins, and a nice little store where you can pick up supplies.
You must have been hospitalera there right before my friend Nan. I knew that she was going to volunteer somewhere on the Camino, but didn't know when or where until the I received an email from a mutual friend the night that I was in San Nicolás del Real Camino telling me that she was in Calzadilla de los Hermanillos. I hadn't been planning to take that alternate route, but of course I had to with my friend there! I really enjoyed my stay at the little municipal albergue. There were only three of us peregrinas that night, so we each had our own "room".
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Francés (Sept-Oct 2015)
Camino Portugués (Sept-Oct 2017)
Camino de San Salvador (Oct 2020???)
As you walk through the village of Castrojeríz, it's easy to not notice "La Casa de Silencio" - as I did in 2018. However, while working as a volunteer in an albergue in Castrojeriz in September 2019, I found time to explore the town in more depth. As well as the wonderful churches, the local people, the plaza mayor, the castle on the hill and walking through he ruins of San Anton and speaking to the Hospitalero of its albergue donativo (about 2km before reaching Castrojeríz); the jewel in the crown for me was spending hours of quiet reflection in La Casa de Silencio.
Could not agree more. https://jimfriedrich.com/2014/04/24/hospital-for-the-soul/
 
Camino(s) past & future
CF SJPdP to SdC
(May 2015)
CF Sarria to SdC
(May 2016)
CF SJPDP-SdC
(Apr/May 2018)
VdlP (2022)
Hi Robo, I popped into Camp David around Easter 2019, en route to visit some of my family by car (trip from home, Madrid, to Villafranca del Bierzo via León, Hospital de Órbigo, Astorga, Cruz de Ferro, Molinaseca, Ponferrada). There was nobody in residence at the time, but a man and his mother were also visiting, they owned the land (or some of it) and told me that David had left a few weeks prior to their visit. They told me another person was thinking of taking over the role of the camp resident, but wasn't due for a few weeks, an Italian man I believe. The camp was still there, but closed up and in need of TLC.
Hopefully, since then someone has taken over as the ambassador of Camp David to once again spread the love and joy that David had done for several years. It certainly was a special "pit-stop" when I stopped there for an hour on the 2nd October 2018, David was really taking care of the place and all who chose to stop there. The hammocks at the back were a wonderful way to rest and chill out and just watch the pilgrims coming and going through the camp.
Good to hear.

I was last there in May 2018, with my wife Pat.
It was quite funny.

She's a bit of a cynic, and was not that impressed when I said leaving Hospital de Orbigo "today we'll meet David".

She didn't really show much interest at all.........even as we walked up that little rise to his place.

Then as she took off her pack..........she glanced at me and said........

"There's something here isn't there"? I just smiled.

She ended up having pictures with David and thought him a very special person! ;)
 

Kathar1na

Member
Camino(s) past & future
To Santiago and beyond (from home; Voie de Tours; Camino Francés; Biskaya; Manche; Via Brabantica)
Yes. This is a must do. A large wall of gold. Navarette was much larger and more important than now. And somehow the church is larger inside than out.
The altar piece or retablo of the church in Navarette is a good example to support the claim that there are no "Must dos". Just "This might interest you" or "This might appeal to you to see". Ask a variety of people for their reaction to it and you may get surprises.
 

Kathar1na

Member
Camino(s) past & future
To Santiago and beyond (from home; Voie de Tours; Camino Francés; Biskaya; Manche; Via Brabantica)
St. Jean Pied-de-Port: * Les Pyrénées
It took a few seconds before I realised that these are not places with a "must see" but a "must eat" 😊. And possibly a "must eat" for people with pockets that are not too shallow? I know that some ;) people won't approve of my suggestion but we've got really delightful results from consulting TripAdvisor, especially TripAdvisor in all languages including Spanish.

And I have a feeling that people are not making much use of another excellent option: ask your local host for a local recommendation! But beware: Say "Where would you go?" to avoid being sent to the nearest place with the cheapest pilgrim menus.
 
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MarkyD

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Francés 31/08/2018 - 20/10/2018
When in Navarette go in the church and put a euro in the box to see the beautiful gold alter light up.
I had a very powerful emotional experience in that church, I came out sobbing like a child. Part of my many cleansing and healing experiences while walking my first Camino in 2018, I will never forget that day.
The gold bothers me when I think of what poor people had to suffer to get it, which still continues to this day. Yes, it is beautiful, but it makes me sad to think of the reality that often hides behind it. However, I do marvel at the craftsmanship and dedication required to fashion such ornamental works of art. It's a strange feeling of wonder and wishing for something more simple, more humble, less exploitative and less opulent. Maybe I'm missing the point for many, but that's how it makes me feel, sorry if this might upset anyone here.
 
Camino(s) past & future
frances 1998, 2000, 2013
As you walk through the village of Castrojeríz, it's easy to not notice "La Casa de Silencio" - as I did in 2018. However, while working as a volunteer in an albergue in Castrojeriz in September 2019, I found time to explore the town in more depth. As well as the wonderful churches, the local people, the plaza mayor, the castle on the hill and walking through he ruins of San Anton and speaking to the Hospitalero of its albergue donativo (about 2km before reaching Castrojeríz); the jewel in the crown for me was spending hours of quiet reflection in La Casa de Silencio.
St. Jean Pied-de-Port: * Les Pyrénées
Huarte: P: Asador Zubiando
Ilarratz/Urdaitz: ** El Molino de Urdaniz
Pamplona: Rodero; Europa; B Abaco; P Letyana; P Baserriberri; P Enekorri; P Alhambra; P Guria; P Bodegón Sarria.
Logrono: * Ikaro; Kiro Sushi; B La Cocina de Ramón; P Umm; P La Galeria; P Tastavin; P Tondeluna;Restaurante Marqués de Riscal
Santo Domingo de la Calzada: P Los Caballeros
(Ezkaray, 14km Santo Domingo de la Calzada): ** El Portal P Casa Masip; Echaurren Tradición
Burgos: * Cobo Vintage; B La Fábrica; P Puerta Real; P Blue Gallery; P Casa Ojeda; P La Favorita
Fromista: P Hosteria de los Palmeros
Villacázar de Sirga: P Mesón de Villasirga
Leon: * Cocinandos * Pablo B Becook B LAV P Koi P Clandestino
Astorga: B Las Termas
Castrillo de los Polvazares: P Casa Coscolo
Carracedelo: P La Tronera
Santiago de Campostella: * Casa Marcelo; A Tafona; B A Horta d’Obradoiro; B Ghalpón Abastos; B Café de Altamira; P Manso; P Auga e Sal; P A Maceta; P Taberna Abastos; P Don Quijote; P Pedro Roca.


I've left my favourites off this list for obvious reasons otherwise it would include La Curiosa in Mansilla de las Mulas ;)
Excellent selection, I would only add a restaurant that I have known for almost 20 years, with a pilgrim menu price but with a menu of authentic restaurant, the Xacobeo Complex in Triacastela. The quality is incredible, Galician cuisine very difficult to overcome ..., a good reason to stop in Triacastela.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2017); Camino a Muxia (2017)
We are hiking the Camino Frances from SJPDP to Santiago starting June 28th. In our research, we have come across a few "must-see" places and things on the Camino or just off the trail. I was hoping to get some suggestions from other pilgrims of places and things to see. For example, we would like to see the octagonal church at Eunate which is a bit off the path from what we can tell. Any suggestions?
I found the Monasteries of San Millan de la Cogolla to be very fascinating. Monastery Suso, founded in the 6th century, gave me an understanding of how a pilgrimage site could originate from the simple cell of a hermit who developed a following and who was reported to preform miracles. And the transformation of this hermitage into a larger monasterial institution in the 11th century is showcased by Monastery Yuso. San Millan is also important as the cradle of the Spanish language through the writings of Ganzalo de Berceo who first wrote poetry in the Castilian vernacular. I walked to San Millan from Ventosa via Najera, spent the morning of the next day touring the monasteries and caught a bus back to Najera that afternoon.
 
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Kathar1na

Member
Camino(s) past & future
To Santiago and beyond (from home; Voie de Tours; Camino Francés; Biskaya; Manche; Via Brabantica)
Maybe I'm missing the point for many, but that's how it makes me feel, sorry if this might upset anyone here.
It shouldn't upset anyone and you made a good point, even if it wasn't your intention: we have emotional reactions to what we see and experience. How we react emotionally is not a question of whether we "get it" or not but it depends on our individual current situation, on our expectations or hopes, on our past experiences, on our factual knowledge etc etc.

San Antón is a good example. I enjoyed exploring it and looking at it for what there is to explore and look at but it would not have occurred to me to mention it here. I had seen too many photos beforehand and that was counterproductive. San Antón wasn't as isolated as the photos had implied, there was a man in a car trying to make us buy stamps and pilgrim gadgets under the "donativo" scheme ... and while I was thinking about this today I realised that long before I had reached San Antón I had passed another Gothic abbey in ruins, much larger than San Antón and with many external walls still standing. I had spent quiet time totally on my own there and I hadn't even known about it until I was literally in it. The imprint that it left on me (wherever, soul, mind or memory ☺) probably conditioned my reaction to San Antón.
 
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Kathar1na

Member
Camino(s) past & future
To Santiago and beyond (from home; Voie de Tours; Camino Francés; Biskaya; Manche; Via Brabantica)
Out of curiosity, I checked a few popular guidebooks that I have acquired over the years to see what they say about Navarrete:
  • guidebook 1: one of the most stunning Baroque retablos in all of Spain
  • guidebook 2: the imposing Church of the Assumption occupies a commanding position overlooking the top square and below it is a Turismo [tourist office] (no mention of anything else about the church, and that's a very popular guidebook)
  • guidebook 3: the elaborate baroque altar is worth seeing
  • guidebook 4: [I ripped out the pages about the Navarrete section and may have lost them during transit in Bilbao]
  • guidebook 5: Navarrete where you can stamp your credential at the Iglesia de la Asuncion (no mention of anything inside the church)
OK, I now understand why I saw camino walkers walk straight past it all and that this thread may have a purpose ☺, especially if you don't own an edition of Gitliz/Davidson. BTW, none of the guidebooks mentions where the gold came from. Unfortunately, I knew.
 
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trecile

Camino Addict
Camino(s) past & future
Francés (2016 & 2017), Norte (2018), Francés-Salvador-Norte (2019), Portuguese (2019)
It shouldn't upset anyone and you made a good point, even if it wasn't your intention: we have emotional reactions to what we see and experience. How we react emotionally is not a question of whether we "get it" or not but it depends on our individual current situation, on our expectations or hopes, on our past experiences, on our factual knowledge etc etc.

San Antón is a good example. I enjoyed exploring it and looking at it for what there is to explore and look at but it would not have occurred to me to mention it here. I had seen too many photos beforehand and that was counterproductive. San Antón wasn't as isolated as the photos had implied, there was a man in a car trying to make us buy stamps and pilgrim gadgets under the "donativo" scheme ... and while I was thinking about this today I realised that long before I had reached San Antón I had passed another Gothic abbey in ruins, much larger than San Antón and with many external walls still standing. I had spent quiet time totally on my own there and I hadn't even known about it until I was literally in it. The imprint that it left on me (wherever, soul, mind or memory ☺) probably conditioned my reaction to San Antón.
On my first Camino it was a hot day so I got a very early start from Hontanas. I arrived at San Anton just as the sun was coming up, and it had quite a magical feel to it. The second time was in full daylight, and I wasn't nearly as impressed.
 

tomnorth

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances: September 24 - October 31 (2015)
I will refrain from recommendations except that, one of the delights of walking lies in serendipity, the accidental finding of things, letting small wonders reveal themselves shyly at the speed of travel, a human speed. Too much research spoils the mystery of what lies around the next corner.
Amen to this! The most amazing sights I saw wouldn’t have made anyone’s top ten list.
 

yakremark

Sister Kay Kramer CDP
Camino(s) past & future
CF (Sept. 2012)
CF (Oct-Nov. 2014)
No, I did indeed mean Santo Domingo de Silos as it is probably THE monastery I would have liked to visit, possibly by bus, taxi or car there and back. Although I'm an every-step-of-the-way-on-foot person I also felt that S.D.d.S. is pretty much part of the Pilgrimage Road to Santiago, despite the fact that it's a 1 hour car ride to the south of Burgos. My consolation prize is the cloister of the church San Pedro de la Rúa in Estella ...
I took the local bus from Burgos to SDdS and loved every minute of it. Joining the musically renowned Benedictine monks for Mass and the Liturgy of the Hours was an experience I will always cherish.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 2016, del Norte 2019
Excellent selection, I would only add a restaurant that I have known for almost 20 years, with a pilgrim menu price but with a menu of authentic restaurant, the Xacobeo Complex in Triacastela. The quality is incredible, Galician cuisine very difficult to overcome ..., a good reason to stop in Triacastela.
Loved this restaurant so much that we went there for lunch and returned for dinner!
 

marylynn

Ontario Canada
Camino(s) past & future
2011-2019 CF, Arles/Aragones
2015 & 2017 HærvejenDK
Meeting David Vidal en route to Astorga.
Is he still there folks, or did he really finally leave last year?

On October 8, 2019, the refreshment stand was open and very well-stocked, and David was there when I stopped for a break while on my way to Astorga. He was talking with visitors and looked good, but a bit tired. It was nice to see him again!
 

Richard DeMerchant

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Portuguese Coastal Route (2019)
Camino Frances (July 2020)
The crucifix in the Igrexa de San Xoán de Furelos - shortly before you get to Melide.

HIS last days on Earth, your last days on the Camino.
Thanks for this tip. We recently saw the movie "Footprints: The Path of Your Life" and it was the side trip they took to see part of the cross that was the original reason for the post. We were not sure if there are detours may just miss. We are not doing a lot of planning on the way other than booking the first two nights in SJPDP the rest will be what it will be. That being said it does not hurt to know about items like the crucifix you mention as our journey will be a spiritual one.
 
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biarritzdon

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF11, CF12, CP13, CF14, CA15, S.Anton15, CF&CI15
Ditch Pig16, CF&CP17, CdN18, CM18, CF18, LePuy19
On my first Camino it was a hot day so I got a very early start from Hontanas. I arrived at San Anton just as the sun was coming up, and it had quite a magical feel to it. The second time was in full daylight, and I wasn't nearly as impressed.
I spent a few weeks being a hospi with Ollie and trust me, you can wilt in the afternoon. We cleaned from 8 to 11 and then moved our chairs around to be out of the sun.
 

Kathar1na

Member
Camino(s) past & future
To Santiago and beyond (from home; Voie de Tours; Camino Francés; Biskaya; Manche; Via Brabantica)
The crucifix in the Igrexa de San Xoán de Furelos - shortly before you get to Melide.
I wondered why the Furelos crucifix isn't mentioned in Gitlitz/Davidson. I learnt now that the sculpture dates from the 1950s. That's one drawback of their guidebook: anything of a very recent date, in particular after they had published the book, is not included.
 

Jeff Crawley

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Currently on a "Virtual" Camino and striding out across Castile y Leon!
Thanks for this tip. We recently saw the movie "Footprints: The Path of Your Life" and it was the side trip they took to see part of the cross that was the original reason for the post. We were not sure if there are detours may just miss. We are not doing a lot of planning on the way other than booking the first two nights in SJPDP the rest will be what it will be. That being said it does not hurt to know about items like the crucifix you mention as our journey will be a spiritual one.
You don't have to do a side trip for this one, you cross the bridge and literally walk straight past the front door:

1578180002403.png

Easy to miss though - it hardly looks like a church, does it?
 

Jeff Crawley

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Currently on a "Virtual" Camino and striding out across Castile y Leon!
I wondered why the Furelos crucifix isn't mentioned in Gitlitz/Davidson. I learnt now that the sculpture dates from the 1950s. That's one drawback of their guidebook: anything of a very recent date, in particular after they had published the book, is not included.
Speaking as somebody of the same age as the crucifix I thank you for refering to it as a "recent date" ;)
 
Camino(s) past & future
CF SJPdP to SdC
(May 2015)
CF Sarria to SdC
(May 2016)
CF SJPDP-SdC
(Apr/May 2018)
VdlP (2022)
The ruins of Castro de Castromaior near Ventas de Naron as well as the Roman villas in the Meseta near Ledigos. The best of the Roman villas is the farthest one off of the path but has some well preserved mosaics.
Where the ruins near Ledigos ?
 
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (2019)
We are hiking the Camino Frances from SJPDP to Santiago starting June 28th. In our research, we have come across a few "must-see" places and things on the Camino or just off the trail. I was hoping to get some suggestions from other pilgrims of places and things to see. For example, we would like to see the octagonal church at Eunate which is a bit off the path from what we can tell. Any suggestions?
I did the detour to Eunate and it did seem like a nice church from the outside but I arrived well before it opened and I didn't fancy hanging around until it opened and so I walked on without seeing inside.
 

YogaAnabel

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2015)
Via de la Plata (2017)
I vaguely remember having read (on a reliable source) that David of the Casa de los Dioses came back for just a short time around Easter 2019 and then returned more permanently this autumn 2019. I just watched two short videos on FB, posted in November 2019, where he plants a tree and stands on top of his roof and talks about repairing the roof. He's got a beard now.

It is one of the places where I wish I had not read and seen so much about beforehand. Although we exchanged a few words and he gave me a good-bye hug, all this knowledge about him and his place that I had already acquired before it finally appeared on the horizon made it feel much like a routine stop ...
I completely agree. All the blablabla on social media creates a set of expectations before people even set off. It's especially unfair in the case of David (or any individual who's turned into a "Camino legend" by the guide books or people blabbing online) who's just doing his thing and people arrive there anticipating seeing him and having unrealistic expectations about what the experience will be like.

A.
 

Kathar1na

Member
Camino(s) past & future
To Santiago and beyond (from home; Voie de Tours; Camino Francés; Biskaya; Manche; Via Brabantica)
the Roman villas in the Meseta near Ledigos. The best of the Roman villas is the farthest one off of the path but has some well preserved mosaics.
Wow, these are quite something. Thank you for mentioning these two sites, @biarritzdon. If they have ever been discussed on here before, the information is buried in this huge pile of posts that is the forum. Not really related to medieval pilgrimage but from what I've seen on their website, I would say if someone has even a remote interest in the Romans and their world and has never visited Roman sites of this kind before and is unlikely to visit any such sites in the near future, don't miss this opportunity!

What would be really useful would be a list of sites and monuments that would update what is in Gitlitz/Davidson. I would put these two Roman villas and the Museum Evolución Humana in Burgos on such a list.
 
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Kathar1na

Member
Camino(s) past & future
To Santiago and beyond (from home; Voie de Tours; Camino Francés; Biskaya; Manche; Via Brabantica)
As @biarritzdon has already said, the nearest site (La Tejada) is a few km from the Camino Frances and the other one (La Olmeda) is about 20 km from Carrion de los Condes. G/D describes La Tejada as the best Roman ruins along the Pilgrimage Road and not to be missed. La Olmeda is described elsewhere as one of the most important archaeological sites in the Spanish Roman world! Both sites were only discovered in the 1960-1970s, and since then there's not only been excavations but they have also made the sites accessible to visitors and provided information etc on site.

Here's some visual information about the location of the two Roman villa sites, in addition to what @biarritzdon has already provided:

Roman villas.jpg
 
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Derrybiketours

A journey of 500 miles begins with one step!
Camino(s) past & future
SJPdeP-FIN(09/2018)
PORTO-SANT(11/2018)
Caminho Da Fe(01/2019)
SJPdeP- SANT(09/2019)
Madrid(7/2020)
On October 8, 2019, the refreshment stand was open and very well-stocked, and David was there when I stopped for a break while on my way to Astorga.
On 20th October 2019 I stopped to talk and share a delicious pomegranate and oj concoction David made for us. The light in his eyes was magical and we made a lovely connection. He's returned as Luca wasn't being received very well by passing pilgrims and now with his girlfriend who's name escapes me. 🤠
 

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Mima1965

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Norte/Primitivo/Frances (2021)
St. Jean Pied-de-Port: * Les Pyrénées
Huarte: P: Asador Zubiando
Ilarratz/Urdaitz: ** El Molino de Urdaniz
Pamplona: Rodero; Europa; B Abaco; P Letyana; P Baserriberri; P Enekorri; P Alhambra; P Guria; P Bodegón Sarria.
Logrono: * Ikaro; Kiro Sushi; B La Cocina de Ramón; P Umm; P La Galeria; P Tastavin; P Tondeluna;Restaurante Marqués de Riscal
Santo Domingo de la Calzada: P Los Caballeros
(Ezkaray, 14km Santo Domingo de la Calzada): ** El Portal P Casa Masip; Echaurren Tradición
Burgos: * Cobo Vintage; B La Fábrica; P Puerta Real; P Blue Gallery; P Casa Ojeda; P La Favorita
Fromista: P Hosteria de los Palmeros
Villacázar de Sirga: P Mesón de Villasirga
Leon: * Cocinandos * Pablo B Becook B LAV P Koi P Clandestino
Astorga: B Las Termas
Castrillo de los Polvazares: P Casa Coscolo
Carracedelo: P La Tronera
Santiago de Campostella: * Casa Marcelo; A Tafona; B A Horta d’Obradoiro; B Ghalpón Abastos; B Café de Altamira; P Manso; P Auga e Sal; P A Maceta; P Taberna Abastos; P Don Quijote; P Pedro Roca.


I've left my favourites off this list for obvious reasons otherwise it would include La Curiosa in Mansilla de las Mulas ;)
🍷🍷🥂🍾
 

Gailsie

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances Fall '09 ;
This will not answer the specific question that the poster asked, but in the ten years since my camino, it is not the buildings that I remember but the geography and the beauty of the route. When I close my eyes even now that is what I remember. Oh, I enjoyed the churches and ruins but the beauty of the land and the variety of what I saw is what stays with me. And also I remember the kindness of the people, the old men and women sitting out front of their houses wishing me a buen camino or asking a Santiago?
 

Sharonstavroff

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
May (2013), April (2014), May (2016)
We are hiking the Camino Frances from SJPDP to Santiago starting June 28th. In our research, we have come across a few "must-see" places and things on the Camino or just off the trail. I was hoping to get some suggestions from other pilgrims of places and things to see. For example, we would like to see the octagonal church at Eunate which is a bit off the path from what we can tell. Any suggestions?
I created a list of must-see places of the places I only heard about from fellow pilgrims during my 2013 journey. In 2014 I visited them all without any regret. My most favourite places/sites are: Pamplona-pinchos. Monasterio Irache, Torres del Rio-12th century church Iglesia de Santo Sepulcro (linked to Knights Templar), Ranchos (lamb dish) in Vianna. Logrono is one of the most fought-over cities in Spain with few relics remaining, however, the tapas/pinchos especially Soriana is fantastic. Najera-The Royal Pantheon with tombs of nobles at Monasterio Santa Maria de la Real (one of my top 5 favourites), San Millan and monasteries of Suso and Yuso (one of the earliest know monastic communities in Europe from the 6th century and the birthplace of the Spanish Language. Belorado-the ancient cave dwellings of hermits behind the Church of Santa Maria and it's fine altarpiece. Burgos-Cathedral is spectacular with a discount for pilgrims with passport, the quiet church and unique altar of San Nicolas (situated at the top of the steps behind the cathedral), The Museum of Human Evolution is a world-class museum which helps to explain Atapuerca more clearly. Castrojeriz- castle ruins. Itero de la Vega-Ermita St. Nicolas 12th century pilgrim hospice. Villalcazar de Sirga-home of the Templar church of Santa Maria with tombs of nobles and royalty and is a national monument. Leon-Cathedral, roman walls, Parador/Cloisters San Marcos. Santibanez de Valdeiglesia-5 km past David of La Casa de Los Dios (you'll see for yourself). Astorga-Gaudi's Palacio Episcopal and Museo de Los Caminos. Side route to Castrillo de Polvazares-traditional Maragato village with stone streets and houses that were rebuilt by local artists. Traditional Maragota meal is huge if you are hungry. Ponferrada-knights templar castle. Villafranca del Bierzo-the more modern Parador with excellent facilities (including long bathtubs, pools, sauna and wonderful kitchen and buffet)and more affordable than the renovated historical Paradors. O'Cebriero-overnight stay to experience the sunrise through the fog in the morning and enjoy breakfast by the wood fire in Venta Celta (ask for their honey and cheese). Samos. Melide-Pulpo. Monte del Gozo-two pilgrims pointing to Santiago (this is over the field behind Monte del Gozo about 1 km away. It's worth the little walk to sit and contemplate before your descent into Santiago). Santiago-tapas is spectacular. Muxia-beautiful and dynamic, a great way to end your Camino Frances.
 

Krista Rogman

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2016), Camino Portugues (2017)
We are hiking the Camino Frances from SJPDP to Santiago starting June 28th. In our research, we have come across a few "must-see" places and things on the Camino or just off the trail. I was hoping to get some suggestions from other pilgrims of places and things to see. For example, we would like to see the octagonal church at Eunate which is a bit off the path from what we can tell. Any suggestions?
When I walked th Camino
Frances the things which stood out for me were the little surprises. Those things which you see coming around a corner, walking past a charming yard, having a plesant conversation with a local or another pilgrim. Yes of course, visit the cathedrials but don't forget to be aware of the small blessings which come your way.
 

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