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Slight detour after Allaríz

alansykes

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Except the Francés
The southern version of the Sanabrés is strangely neglected. I like the northern one very much, and think the section on the high ground round the Venta de Teresa after A Gudiña has some of the loveliest few hours of any camino I know.

But I don't see why so few people head for Verín, which is a fine town with good food looked down on by the archetype of a fierce border castle. Apparently I was about the 100th person this year to stay in the excellent huge xunta albergue of Villaderei 20-odd pleasant km further on, which is silly.

Allaríz is another handsome friendly town. Quite nearby, and only about 500m off the official camino into Ourense, is the little village of Santa Mariña de Augas Santas, almost but not quite unpopulated. It's on a ridge looking down on the Miño valley and Ourense - when I was there this Monday the valley below was partly full of clouds, but Santa Mariña was in bright sunshine, very lovely.

Anyway, Santa Mariña was a chaste young Christian about the time the Emperor Hadrian was building his wall near where I live. She attracted the attention of the local Roman prefect, Olibrio, from nearby Armea, who had evil intentions. She rejected his advances, which annoyed him to the extent that he had her whipped and tortured, without changing her mind. He then got fed up and ordered her to be burned in a nearby oven. St Peter personally put out the fire, and she washed off her ashes in the nearest fuente, now the Auguas Negras as a result. Olibrio, by now presumably very pissed off, ordered that her head should be cut off, which it was - St Peter must have moved on by then. Her head bounced three times, and in each place a holy fountain appeared, the current Augas Santas, just next to the Romanesque church in her honour, complete with rose windows. Nearby you can see the unfinished basilica of the Ascensión, built over the forno da Santa, which she was incompletely burnt in. And on the Roman road leading back on to the camino you can see part of the well-excavated remains of the town of Armea.

The village also has the handsome old summer palace of the local Bishop, guarded by a pair of very fine lions, who remind you of the Iraqi poet al Mutannabi's line "when the lion shows his teeth, do not imagine he is smiling at you."

An easy detour, and well worth it, I'd say. And very tasty cool (holy) water.

_20191121_203305.JPG
 

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)
The lions (and their pseudo-friendly smiles) made me chuckle out loud. Very enticing @alansykes, as usual. Your way with words keeps getting me in trouble - and guarantees that regardless of how picky I try to get, the list of caminos I want to walk will never run out. Gracias!
 
Camino(s) past & future
Frances Portuguese Finisterre Muxia Ingles Mozarabe VldP Sanabres Serrana Salvador Norte Espiritual
The signage in A Gudiña doesn't market it very well ...
228.555 por Verin
195.953 por Laza

... and there's that restaurant in Rionegro.

View attachment 66914
But that "me gusta comer" is before the split in A Gudina. And I still dream about the food experience there!!!
 

KinkyOne

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
I'am not perfect, but I'm always myself!!!
The southern version of the Sanabrés is strangely neglected. I like the northern one very much, and think the section on the high ground round the Venta de Teresa after A Gudiña has some of the loveliest few hours of any camino I know.

But I don't see why so few people head for Verín, which is a fine town with good food looked down on by the archetype of a fierce border castle. Apparently I was about the 100th person this year to stay in the excellent huge xunta albergue of Villaderei 20-odd pleasant km further on, which is silly.

Allaríz is another handsome friendly town. Quite nearby, and only about 500m off the official camino into Ourense, is the little village of Santa Mariña de Augas Santas, almost but not quite unpopulated. It's on a ridge looking down on the Miño valley and Ourense - when I was there this Monday the valley below was partly full of clouds, but Santa Mariña was in bright sunshine, very lovely.

Anyway, Santa Mariña was a chaste young Christian about the time the Emperor Hadrian was building his wall near where I live. She attracted the attention of the local Roman prefect, Olibrio, from nearby Armea, who had evil intentions. She rejected his advances, which annoyed him to the extent that he had her whipped and tortured, without changing her mind. He then got fed up and ordered her to be burned in a nearby oven. St Peter personally put out the fire, and she washed off her ashes in the nearest fuente, now the Auguas Negras as a result. Olibrio, by now presumably very pissed off, ordered that her head should be cut off, which it was - St Peter must have moved on by then. Her head bounced three times, and in each place a holy fountain appeared, the current Augas Santas, just next to the Romanesque church in her honour, complete with rose windows. Nearby you can see the unfinished basilica of the Ascensión, built over the forno da Santa, which she was incompletely burnt in. And on the Roman road leading back on to the camino you can see part of the well-excavated remains of the town of Armea.

The village also has the handsome old summer palace of the local Bishop, guarded by a pair of very fine lions, who remind you of the Iraqi poet al Mutannabi's line "when the lion shows his teeth, do not imagine he is smiling at you."

An easy detour, and well worth it, I'd say. And very tasty cool (holy) water.

View attachment 66908
OK, OK, I promise I'll do it next time (because I did A Gudina - Laza and onwards already twice and it's really beautifull) :D
 

Raggy

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
2017, 2018, 2019
But that "me gusta comer" is before the split in A Gudina. And I still dream about the food experience there!!!
You're quite right - It's possible to eat in Rionegro and take the Verin variant.
You miss Rionegro if you follow Alan Sykes example and walk the VdlP Portugues from Zamora. I was hoping do that earlier this year but my companions wanted to walk the Sanabres. I'll do it one day.
 

peregrina2000

Moderator
Staff member
Just to add a little more about Allariz and its environs. It is an absolutely wonderful area for exploring the part of the Sil River that the Invierno does not reach. I spent a long weekend in the area, first night in Celanova to visit the monastery and a visigothic church, Santa Comba de Bande, along with a Roman fort. Then to Allariz, for the visit described in the link below, and finally to the jaw-dropping parador Santo Estevo where I had a ridiculously low rate. From there, I visited two pretty amazing places, San Pedro de Rocas and Santa Cristina, along with plenty of stops along the river to see the gorge. This part of the Sil River is even more beautiful than the part we walk on the Invierno, and though it isn’t on any camino, if you have time, there are plenty of GPS tracks that take you around the area on foot. I was in a car for most of it, but I did take a 8 km (?) circle walk from San Pedro along with a few 5-8 k walks from the Parador. Also from Parada de Sil, there are many walking options.

Hoping to get back some day and do more serious walking!


And just re-reading Alan’s posts, I remember that Miguel told me that the fornos where Santa Marina was burned, under the church, had been pretty definitively identified as pre-Roman saunas. It is so interesting how each era incorporates what they find to mold their own myths. Thanks for elaborating on the story, Alan.
 

Donna Sch

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
VdLP-Sanabres-Fisterra (Summer 2015); Levante-Invierno (Feb/Mar 2019);
England Camino routes ?2024
My 2015 day to Verín was very memorable. Despite getting lost a few times and walking too many km, the route is stunning and the people lovely. I walked it on the hottest day during a heatwave which made it interesting. Verín to Laza is a lovely walk up the valley. Are there any ugly routes in this part of the world?
 
Thread starter OLDER threads on this topic Forum Replies Date
R Via de la Plata 11
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