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I DID IT!!

Camino(s) past & future
Camino Portugués
#1
I Just finished my first Camino from Porto to Santiago! I want to thank anyone who gave me advice on here! Everything helped. I did the coastal route up until Vila do Conde then went inland to join the Central route and it was amazing!! Id be happy to offer any help or tips to anyone who'd like. Id just like to give back like the ones that helped me!!
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Portugués
#3
Awesome! Not sure what the weather will be like in Oct but My 5 tips are:
1: Keep hydrated
2: Don't think of it as a race, plan enough days to sight see without feeling hurried to get to your next stop
3: wear a hat to shield from the sun
4: protect your feet, I used a brand of sock recommended to me on here called "Wright" I did not have one blister!!
5: Do test hikes, nothing will prepare you for cobblestone streets but, if you do some long distance hiking before you go itll give you a sense how long you can go each day. (my first 2 days consisted of about 30K and that was about my max
6: Bonus: Carry cash with you, not every café along the way will accept Debit or Credit cards. I carried about 100 euros and was fine with that amount.

hope this helps!
 

Anamya

Keeping it simple
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2015)
Camino Portugues (2017)
Lebaniego (Planning)
#4
Congrats, Blake! It is indeed a great route and an awesome achievement!
I walked last year and fell in love with Portugal.

1: Keep hydrated
2: Don't think of it as a race, plan enough days to sight see without feeling hurried to get to your next stop
3: wear a hat to shield from the sun
4: protect your feet, I used a brand of sock recommended to me on here called "Wright" I did not have one blister!!
5: Do test hikes, nothing will prepare you for cobblestone streets but, if you do some long distance hiking before you go itll give you a sense how long you can go each day. (my first 2 days consisted of about 30K and that was about my max
6: Bonus: Carry cash with you, not every café along the way will accept Debit or Credit cards. I carried about 100 euros and was fine with that amount.
These are very good tips indeed :)
I totally second number 4 and 5 - I wore very cushioned trail runners to help avoid the impact of cobblestones. Another tips as well:

1) If you go to restaurantes in Portugal, politely refuse all the "extras" they start bringing to the table (such as bread, olives, dips, etc). They are not included in the dishes price and you may end up with a much higher bill than expected. "Nao precisa, obrigado" (pronounced 'Noun Prey-ceesa, obreegadow") means "no need, thanks".

2) After you cross the bridge from Portugal to reach Spain, remember they do the siesta on most Spanish cities. EVERYTHING closes from 2pm to 5pm. Then they re-open until late.

3) Food is brilliant, even on the cheap Menu del Dia options. Try Port wine and Francesinha (a croque monsieur on steroids) in Porto and Pimientos de Padrón (peppers) in Caldas de Reis or Padrón. Also try Pastel de Nata, available everywhere in Portugal. I tried the latter about 25 times while I walked, as I wanted to be really sure about liking it. I think i do, but I may try again to be sure ;)
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Portugués
#5
The food and drinks are greatness. While in northern Portugal make sure you try the Vinho Verde wine. Its refreshing after a long walk. I found that most locals in Galacia drink beer. My fav over Estrella was the 1906 Especial.

Very correct about the bread and olives they are a couple euros extra. Padron peppers are a must try! Bacalao is a Cod fish that is in about every restaurant along the way. I suggest giving it a try, almost everytime it is served with fries and rice so itll fill you up for the next day!!
 

Anamya

Keeping it simple
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2015)
Camino Portugues (2017)
Lebaniego (Planning)
#6
The food and drinks are greatness. While in northern Portugal make sure you try the Vinho Verde wine. Its refreshing after a long walk. I found that most locals in Galacia drink beer. My fav over Estrella was the 1906 Especial.

Very correct about the bread and olives they are a couple euros extra. Padron peppers are a must try! Bacalao is a Cod fish that is in about every restaurant along the way. I suggest giving it a try, almost everytime it is served with fries and rice so itll fill you up for the next day!!
Wow, wow, wow, I can't agree more. How do I like this post multiple times?
I walked this trail with my husband, and one portion of Bacalhau was enough to feed both of us. I'm very small, but he is a strong army dude. He also seconds the good beers.

Another thing: it is not common to tip in restaurants over there, as the service tax in already included in the price. But if you love the food, you can always round the final bill up and they will be happy.

And I just remembered another detail: Some major churches may ask you to leave or cover yourself if you are wearing shorts or sleeveless shirts. It is a matter of respect for them. It is not enforced everywhere, but happened in a few places in Spain to me (when wearing walking shorts).
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances Sept-Oct 2018
#7
Awesome! Not sure what the weather will be like in Oct but My 5 tips are:
1: Keep hydrated
2: Don't think of it as a race, plan enough days to sight see without feeling hurried to get to your next stop
3: wear a hat to shield from the sun
4: protect your feet, I used a brand of sock recommended to me on here called "Wright" I did not have one blister!!
5: Do test hikes, nothing will prepare you for cobblestone streets but, if you do some long distance hiking before you go itll give you a sense how long you can go each day. (my first 2 days consisted of about 30K and that was about my max
6: Bonus: Carry cash with you, not every café along the way will accept Debit or Credit cards. I carried about 100 euros and was fine with that amount.

hope this helps!
Which Wrightsock did you use? The anti-blister, double or the regular one? They look great!
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances Sept-Oct 2018
#8
I Just finished my first Camino from Porto to Santiago! I want to thank anyone who gave me advice on here! Everything helped. I did the coastal route up until Vila do Conde then went inland to join the Central route and it was amazing!! Id be happy to offer any help or tips to anyone who'd like. Id just like to give back like the ones that helped me!!
Congratulations! I'm really jealous of the food! Next time I do Portugal!
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Portugués
#11
If you appreciate food and Caminos, you can't miss the Portuguese route. It is beautiful, historical and delicious! :D
Agreed!! One of the coolest historical sites is in Padron. It sits behind the old armory on top of the hill. You cant miss it. If you make you way around the back of it youll find a big pile of rocks with a cross on it. It designates the spot where St. James gave a sermon. Not to many people know its there. If you use the John Brierley guidebook he uses it for the cover of the book. I snapped this picture when I found the site :)
 

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martyseville

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
a/a
#14
Blake, great! Congrats! Forever your memory of a wonder walk.

Do you know the name of the town/albergue that is a few days from O Porto.

It ls a two story new Albergue. Has washer and dryers in small room in the rear. Down stairs was couch in a common area.

This place was locate located to a church. At the intersection of a major highway.

When leaving this Albergue you had to turn right. Go down the highway for a bit, then turn right on the highway.. Then down to your left.

The intersection is a "T" down the street from the alberque

Across the street was a very good place to eat.

I have been trying to recall the name of this town/Albergue ?????

Do you know the name of the town? Albergue??

Thanks
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Portugese (2018)
#15
Congrats, Blake! It is indeed a great route and an awesome achievement!
I walked last year and fell in love with Portugal.



These are very good tips indeed :)
I totally second number 4 and 5 - I wore very cushioned trail runners to help avoid the impact of cobblestones. Another tips as well:

1) If you go to restaurantes in Portugal, politely refuse all the "extras" they start bringing to the table (such as bread, olives, dips, etc). They are not included in the dishes price and you may end up with a much higher bill than expected. "Nao precisa, obrigado" (pronounced 'Noun Prey-ceesa, obreegadow") means "no need, thanks".

2) After you cross the bridge from Portugal to reach Spain, remember they do the siesta on most Spanish cities. EVERYTHING closes from 2pm to 5pm. Then they re-open until late.

3) Food is brilliant, even on the cheap Menu del Dia options. Try Port wine and Francesinha (a croque monsieur on steroids) in Porto and Pimientos de Padrón (peppers) in Caldas de Reis or Padrón. Also try Pastel de Nata, available everywhere in Portugal. I tried the latter about 25 times while I walked, as I wanted to be really sure about liking it. I think i do, but I may try again to be sure ;)
Ah, the Francesinha ... now that’s something memorable. Haha. Takes care of a day’s calories in one sitting. Mine came with French Fries.
 
#16
I Just finished my first Camino from Porto to Santiago! I want to thank anyone who gave me advice on here! Everything helped. I did the coastal route up until Vila do Conde then went inland to join the Central route and it was amazing!! Id be happy to offer any help or tips to anyone who'd like. Id just like to give back like the ones that helped me!!
Good job!! How did you find the route from Villa do Conde back to central? I’ve read different views. Thank you and Bom Caminho!
Rosemary
 
#17
Agreed!! One of the coolest historical sites is in Padron. It sits behind the old armory on top of the hill. You cant miss it. If you make you way around the back of it youll find a big pile of rocks with a cross on it. It designates the spot where St. James gave a sermon. Not to many people know its there. If you use the John Brierley guidebook he uses it for the cover of the book. I snapped this picture when I found the site :)
Very cool! I leave in two weeks starting in Lisbon. Can’t wait!!
 
Camino(s) past & future
CF (4/2017)
CP (5/2019)
#18
I used the antiblister double. It worked well with my trailrunners I wore. Cant recommend them enough.
Agree!

I wore it on my Camino Frances. It is a pair of Wright Sock with a "Camino Shell" on it, which guarantees no blister. I got it from MEC.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Portugués
#19
Blake, great! Congrats! Forever your memory of a wonder walk.

Do you know the name of the town/albergue that is a few days from O Porto.

It ls a two story new Albergue. Has washer and dryers in small room in the rear. Down stairs was couch in a common area.

This place was locate located to a church. At the intersection of a major highway.

When leaving this Albergue you had to turn right. Go down the highway for a bit, then turn right on the highway.. Then down to your left.

The intersection is a "T" down the street from the alberque

Across the street was a very good place to eat.

I have been trying to recall the name of this town/Albergue ?????

Do you know the name of the town? Albergue??

Thanks
Hello!

Sorry, I’m sure I may have passed it. It I don’t recall what the name of it is.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Portugués
#20
Good job!! How did you find the route from Villa do Conde back to central? I’ve read different views. Thank you and Bom Caminho!
Rosemary
It was waymarked well so I didn’t get lost. But it was mostly on asphalt and city roads til you got passed Acros
 

Socalgal

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Norte 17
#21
Hi there, thanks for posting all this info, I am in gathering information mode! I have a couple of questions to ask if you don't mind. Did you take the aqueduct route or the river route to the central route? How many days did it take you? What was your itinerary? Did you stay in albergues or private accommodation. I am doing this route in September and am really looking forward to it!
 

Anamya

Keeping it simple
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2015)
Camino Portugues (2017)
Lebaniego (Planning)
#23
How many days did it take you? What was your itinerary? Did you stay in albergues or private accommodation.
I did Central route all the way, so I don´t know about aqueduct or river. The other two questions I can give my 2 cents. :)

1) Porto - Santiago took me 10 days via Central route. Average 22-25km/day.

2) I stayed in both, but I believe the majority were private accomodations. For two reasons: many times I was not stopping where traditional 'stages' are, and walking very slowly, so it was easier to find places on privates. I was also walking with my husband, and the price of 2 albergues or a private room for 2 was very similar - we forked the extra euros to have silent nights of sleep. However, we would always try to book small inns owned by locals, we did not stay in any hotel chain or big place.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Portugués
#24
Hi there, thanks for posting all this info, I am in gathering information mode! I have a couple of questions to ask if you don't mind. Did you take the aqueduct route or the river route to the central route? How many days did it take you? What was your itinerary? Did you stay in albergues or private accommodation. I am doing this route in September and am really looking forward to it!
Hello!!

I took the river route from Vila do Conde to Acros and met up with the central route there.

It took me 11 days total from Porto to Santiago.

I stayed In Pensions mostly which I booked the day before each stop.

Itinerary was: Porto-Vila do Conde-Barcelos-
Hi there, thanks for posting all this info, I am in gathering information mode! I have a couple of questions to ask if you don't mind. Did you take the aqueduct route or the river route to the central route? How many days did it take you? What was your itinerary? Did you stay in albergues or private accommodation. I am doing this route in September and am really looking forward to it!
Hello!

I followed the river to Acros then to the central route

It took me 11 days to go from Porto to Santiago.

I mostly stayed in Pensions and booked them the day before my stops.

My itinerary was: Porto—Vila do Conde—Barcelos—Ponte de Lima—Rubiaes—Valenca—Porrino—Redondela—Ponteverde—Caldas de Reis—Padron—Santiago
 

Socalgal

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Norte 17
#26
Thanks for the detailed response. One other question if you don't mind ..... Was there much road walking overall? Thanks
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Portugués
#27
There was more than I expected. I would say about 50/50. But the majority of road walking was through the little towns and villages. They try to keep you off main roads as best they can.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Caminho Portugues (2017)
#28
I Just finished my first Camino from Porto to Santiago! I want to thank anyone who gave me advice on here! Everything helped. I did the coastal route up until Vila do Conde then went inland to join the Central route and it was amazing!! Id be happy to offer any help or tips to anyone who'd like. Id just like to give back like the ones that helped me!!
Blake, Congrats on your Camino Portugues! I walked it last summer and it was one of the most memorable experiences of my life - deeply spiritual and emotional. Met wonderful people. Awesome scenery. Fabulous food. Sounds like yours was just as memorable. Buen Camino
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances 21 October 2014
Portugese Way October 2018
#30
I Just finished my first Camino from Porto to Santiago! I want to thank anyone who gave me advice on here! Everything helped. I did the coastal route up until Vila do Conde then went inland to join the Central route and it was amazing!! Id be happy to offer any help or tips to anyone who'd like. Id just like to give back like the ones that helped me!!
Hi Blake thanks for the tips. I'm doing my second Camino in October and have decided on Tui to Santiago. Did you have any trouble with signage? And, did you deviate from the track at any stage? I've read where you can avoid some industrial areas along the way but not sure if this is marked.

Congratulations - it's an amazing feeling reaching the Cathedral steps isn't it?

Lindy
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances 21 October 2014
Portugese Way October 2018
#31
Hi Blake thanks for the tips. I'm doing my second Camino in October and have decided on Tui to Santiago. Did you have any trouble with signage? And, did you deviate from the track at any stage? I've read where you can avoid some industrial areas along the way but not sure if this is marked.

Congratulations - it's an amazing feeling reaching the Cathedral steps isn't it?

Lindy
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Portugués
#33
Hi Blake thanks for the tips. I'm doing my second Camino in October and have decided on Tui to Santiago. Did you have any trouble with signage? And, did you deviate from the track at any stage? I've read where you can avoid some industrial areas along the way but not sure if this is marked.

Congratulations - it's an amazing feeling reaching the Cathedral steps isn't it?

Lindy

Hello

The waymarks in Spain were very clear and easy to follow. I did take a couple alternative routes and they were all marked and easy to follow as well. Good luck and Buen Camino!!
 
Camino(s) past & future
Caminho Portugues (2017)
#34
Thanks for the detailed response. One other question if you don't mind ..... Was there much road walking overall? Thanks
If I can add to Blake’s response, I walked the Portugues last summer. There were a couple of spots along the freeway that I did not like. One in particular just south of Arcade - very busy road and the cars whizzing past - barely any room on the shoulder of the road. So be careful there. On the whole, those bad stretches were more than compensated by beautiful stretches through forests, vineyards villages and farmland. One overlook was particularly memorable. See pic.
 

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