The Way of St James
Footloose- 9 Nights/10 Days
As seen in The Listener. The very first pilgrims’ way to Santiago de Compostela dates from the early Middle Ages when devotees coming from northern Europe traversed the Iberian Peninsula on their way to the holy shrine.
This unguided walking holiday follows part of the coastal St. James Way in green Asturias, through picturesque fishing villages, hilly landscapes dotted with Pre-Romanesque churches – and combines cultural heritage, folklore and nature.
The northern area of Spain is known as 'Green Spain'.
Itinerary and Highlights
- Day 1 Arrive Oviedo Airport and transfer to the coastal village of Ribadesella.
- Day 2 Ribadesella to Prado (15km/5hrs or 20km/7hrs).Cross over the River Sella and join “El Camino del Norte”, the famous pilgrims way. Walk green meadows bordering the scenic coastline or take a longer up “Pico de la Forquita” (340m) for panoramic views of the Sierra del Sueve and the Cantabrian Sea.
- Day 3 Prado to Pernus (5hrs). Descend towards the coast and pass your first waymark which bears the blue/yellow St James shell. Follow the pilgrim’s way across green meadows bordering a coastline of white sandy coves.
- Day 4 Pernus to Villaviciosa (6hrs). We leave the coast behind and head for the green hills. Our path contours rural villages and hamlets of typical Asturian houses with wooden balconies and “hórreos”, before reaching the famous ancient church of Priesca (AD921), a jewel of the Pre-Romanesque architecture. Crossing the delta and tidal river “Ria Villaviciosa”, a nature reserve and breeding place for migratory birds from the north, we follow a small stream and cross the valley before reaching the lovely country town of Villaviciosa, your accommodation for the next two nights.
- Day 5 Circular Walk (4hrs). A pleasant walk via the hilltop Monte Cubera from where beautiful views over both the Cantabrian Sea and the surrounding Sierras to the little town of Villaviciosa can be had. Coats of arms or “escudos” on the medieval houses in the old part remind us that it was here where Emperor Charles V first set foot on Spanish soil. Alternatively, by public transport or a taxi, charming neighbouring fishing villages like Lastres or Tazones can be visited.
- Day 6 Villavicosa to San Justo. Cross the heart of the cider region with its traditions and folklore. Many farms have their own cider bodega with presses and wooden barrels for storage.
- Day 7 San Justo to Oviedo – a short transfer back to the seaside. Follow a coastal trail past white sand beaches that can only be reached on foot, till you join the promenade around the bay of San Lorenzo to Gijon. Travel by local train to Oviedo, the cultural center of Asturias.
- Day 8 Transfer by coach (not included in tour price) to Santiago de Compostela for two nights.
- Day 9 Day free, visit the shrine of St. James.
- Day 10 Walking trip arrangements terminate.
- Day 11
- Day 12
- Day 13
- Day 14
- Day 15
- Day 16
- Day 17
- Day 18
- Day 19
- Day 20
Extension to – – 0 Nights/0 Days
Itinerary and Highlights