Friday, 29 May 2009

Santiago De Compostela

Terry is exploring Santiago.

When he gets back to the UK next week, he will be putting up some reflections and comments on his pilgrimage. He has seen so much worth sharing with others - which may encourage them to make their own pilgrimage.

A picture of Terry in the Tee-shirt, a leaving gift from Buckland Tout Saint´s church. If you haven´t seen it it says on the front "From Exeter Cathedral" and in large print on the back "To Santiago De Compostela". Too hot to take off the hat, even the pigeons were in the shade!!!

The glorious west front of the Cathedral, it really is something worth seeing.

Terry is supporting Farm Crisis Network (now Farm Community network). You can read more about it here.

Thursday, 28 May 2009

Santiago De Compostela

Terry arrived in Santiago today at 11:00 after doing the last 18 kilometres! Here are the photos:

The city boundary sign meant there was only two miles or so to go - the
boring part. The outskirts of one city are just like all others. Different
when you get into the old part though.

A kind American family took this for me. I had literally just arrived -
nearly in tears after more than 5 weeks "in the Way".

My Compostela - Given by the Cathedral authorities to those who have
made their pilgrimage "for spiritual reasons". "Tourists" get a
certificate to show that they have done it.

More details of Santiago to follow...

Wednesday, 27 May 2009

Arzua to Pedrouzo-Arca: - & Melide to Arzua

14:00 Terry is in Pedrouzo-Arca. He is staying in a pension which he booked by phone last night.

He has about 20 km left to Compestella!

The Camino Frances leaving Arzua Wednesday morning. It is like getting
onto the motorway after driving for miles and miles across Dartmoor!
Suddenly the "Way" is wide, well marked and full of people. Completely
different with folk to walk with and talk to if you want.

Lunchtime Wednesday - there are now people around who are happy to take a photo! Began with a cheese omlette, then chicken and chips. This was in a wayside bar-cafe with another 6 kilometres to my lodging.

Not an instrument of torture but an old Spanish hay-cart.

Tuesday 26th May

Melide to Arzua

13.00 Arrived in Arzua and staying in the Pension Teodora. A fine sunny day.

Sileage clamps near Arzua. The vegetables appear to be growing on the run off!

Please continue to pray for all farmers and for Farm Crisis Network. (Now Farm community Network)
You can read more about FCN here.
If you would like to donate to FCN's work you can so here.

Monday, 25 May 2009

Ferreira to Melide

15.30:Terry is in a cheap and cheerful 'pension' as the albergue was full. There are a good number of pilgrims on this route. It has rained all day but he was soon showered, warm and dry.
He said" Granite tors were part of the scenery over the top today, 720 mts high and in the mist again.
Hospitales was the site of a pilgrim hospice in the middle ages, near Roman de Retorta in the middle of the 'moor'. A kind woman made me a hot coffee - it was bucketing it down with rain and the cloud was down on the hill tops."

The view is above Hospitales

Galician maize store

Sunday, 24 May 2009

Lugo to Ferreira

14.00: Terry is at the Casa da Ponti in Ferreira, also known as Mosteira, where he was met at the door.
Relatively easy walking today as there were no mountains! It was raining for the last 2km, but Terry had oiled his boots again yesterday so they were fine, and his cape is now drying in the shed.
He left Lugo over the Roman bridge and walked here on the Roman road, Via Romana Lucus Iria Flavia, now a forest track
Only 23km, still on the Roman road, to Melide where the Camino Primitivo joins the Camino Francés.

The paw print was interesting -someone may know what it is - great
dane or similar??? It was too big for a wolf and not round enough for a bear.
I saw it on the Roman road. Glad I didn´t meet it whatever it was.
(Identified - see post 'Safe home' June 6th.)

Roman Milestone replica,
the real one is in a museum
at San Roman de Retorta.

Granite buildings, just like dartmoor

The cooperative sign was on side of barn.

Saturday, 23 May 2009


It is very quiet in town this morning, I am the only one in the
internet cafe - have to pay but only 1.00eu an hour.

The Porta San Pedro is the old gate used by pilgrims
into the city. King Alfonso was the first to use the Camino Primitivo on
his visit to Compostela just after the discovery of the saint .
The stone is at the gate a reminder that the Camino Primitivo is just that
- the oldest pilgrim ´way´ on record.

The Porta Santiago is the way out of the city from the west front of the
Cathedral. I will, I hope be going out that way early tomorrow morning.

Friday, 22 May 2009


I am enjoying a day as a tourist. I have also collected two stamps here for my pilgrim's passport. One is from the hotel and the other from the Cathedral. I met their Pilgrim's Warden who was delighted to meet an English priest and took me for a cup of coffee and some cake. He was very impressed that I had come on the Camino Primitivo and said it was 'quite an achievement', which has really encouraged me.

Views of the Roman walls

The photo of the walls that is on all the postcards - I took
this one!!

Thursday, 21 May 2009

Cádabo to Lugo

31 km
16.00: Terry has walked past Castroverde and is now in the Hotel España, Lugo. The Roman walls are wonderful. The only complete Roman walls in Europe! He is so pleased to have arrived here 'early' and will stay until Sunday. Plenty of time for a rest and to look round.

He feels so sorry for 3 pilgrims who injured themselves yesterday on the bad section of track - twisted ankles and knees. He saw them this morning catching a bus as they had to be in Santiago on Sunday. Terry said he himself was walking like a little old man, depending on the support of his pilgrim's staff to avoid slipping backwards down the hill. (Its length is also useful going downhill as it reaches forward to give support.)

Walking westward.
A shadow of myself! Early morning with the sun at my back near Castroverde.

The tower is the old keep in Castroverde. The Camino goes round the back of town. Pilgrims were keeping out of the way of the 'gentry' in the castle which was also the site of the district gaol- all the more reason for keeping your head down!

Wednesday, 20 May 2009

A Fonsagrada to Cádabo

16.00: Terry has arrived in Cádabo and booked into the hotel - supper in the bar.


Fonsegrada town name plaque

View from the hostal in Fonsagrada

The old ruined hospital at Montouto was the pilgrim refuge, dating from the 1380s until the 1700s. It was built by Pedro 1 (Pedro the Cruel). The dolmen was nearby.

The path today was hard walking, especially for 6kms between A Lastra and Cádabo, as it was washed away in places; all big stones and water! Terry needed his pilgrim's staff for support as it was very slippery.

Not only that but just outside Cádabo, there were beehives on one side of the track and a swarm on the other. Terry crept past and then took the photo looking back! He says, "What other perils are there?"

He had a bar lunch (very salt cheese, ham and bread) with three French pilgrims he had met previously in Grandas, and another good supper tonight (soup, steak and chips and caramel flan). He says he needs to eat well as he doesn't have any spare weight to lose.
Lugo tomorrow, all being well. Terry is planning a long stop there as he wants to see the Roman walls as well as have a rest, so will stay 3 nights in Lugo itself before moving on to Mosteira on Sunday.

Tuesday, 19 May 2009

Grandas de Salime to A Fonsagrada

15.30 Terry is in Fonsegrada staying at the Hospedaje Cantabrico (20eu with bathroom).
There were many roadworks again, as earlier on the walk..
Keeping his priorities right he booked supper for 20.30, then went for a shower and a rest.
"I walked with my shirt sleeves down today because the sun was so hot - enough breeze to be comfortable.
Frogs!!! dozens of them making such a din! I wondered what the noise was and then saw the pond!
Old Fonsagrada would have been a hilltop fortified town. Nothing left to see but the fact that the ground falls away all round.
There are a number of road works between the border pass (Asturias /Galicia) and Fonsagrada, so much so that at one point I had to walk round the hot tarmac which they were spreading across the "Camino". I didn't want to burn my boots. When they have finished the camino will run alongside the road as shown in the 'Fonsegrada' photo. It is even railed off so that you can't fall over the edge. It doesn't have the feel of the old track which goes over fields and moorland.
The old Camino kept to the high ground because the valleys were full of trees and bandits! It does mean that to cross streams etc. there is a steep drop down and then an equally steep pull back up the other side!"

In Fonsegrada the internet is all new equipment - about 20 sets!! Paid for by EU.

The Way passes along the side of the new road

The view is looking back from Fonsegrada.

There were dozens of frogs in a pond by the Camino.

Monday, 18 May 2009

Grandas de Salime

Terry moved into the Hotel La Barra at lunchtime. He says it is cold but dry and his washing is out on the balcony drying. He has also had his boots oiled.
The Casa Cultural is closed, so there is no internet except in the hotel, if you have your own laptop. Also closed on Mondays is the Museum, but Terry had a quick look round yesterday. They have a very good website at (you need to be able to read Spanish) with plenty of photos and a virtual tour.
Yesterday evening he had supper with three Italian pilgrims he had met in the albergue on Saturday night. They have gone on today as they need to be in Santiago this weekend.

Terry had his main meal at lunchtime with a snack for supper, so as to get an early night. Breakfast is promised for 7.45 and he wants to be on the road at 8.00. He will walk to A Fonsegrada, about 28km, as there does not seem to be anywhere to stop before that. Up over 1030mts again tomorrow, then down to 930mts before the next stop at Cádavo. After that it is lowland walking until Melide next week.

The public barbecue at Grandas.
Terry was impressed with the Barbeque and seating
set-up. No doubt they use it for their fiestas - also in Grandas.

Sunday, 17 May 2009

Berducedo to Grandas de Salime

13.10: Terry is in Grandas de Salime and booked into the hostal, but they can only do one night. (He sent a text later to say he has been able to book a room in the hotel for Monday night and will move there at mid-day.) A good meal again of soup with pasta, milanesa (bread-crumbed, spiced steak) and yoghurt.

Today's walk had to be on the road because of the weather. Very low cloud on the mountain tops made visibility too poor to use the tracks. The Way drops into the valley and crosses the hydro electric dam; then there is a very long (5km) steep climb back up to Grandas.
Salime itself is under the waters.

Rest day tomorrow and then 2 more stops before Lugo. They will be long days.

Saturday, 16 May 2009

Pola de Allande to Berducedo

14.30: Terry arrived and booked in at the albergue in Berducedo. The phone signal is very weak here, but he managed some news.
It has been raining all day and very wet, so a shower and dry clothes were first on his list; then he cooked some pasta etc. The albergue is very good; 10 beds - all filled up by this evening. The heating was on and everyone's things were drying nicely.

Today's walk took Terry higher still as he headed towards Berducedo. He took a photo at the pass 1140 metres up, but the visibility was only about 50 mts That's life!
He is aiming for Grandas de Salime tomorrow and planning to stay in the hostal there for two nights. A rest day on Monday (and maybe the internet). Then there are only 3 possible stops before Lugo.
The landscape and towns/villages of the past week remind him of Dartmoor, around Princetown and Two Bridges. Some 'villages' have only one or two houses.

View at the pass

Friday, 15 May 2009

Campiello to Pola de Allande

13.30: Terry is now in Pola de Allande. A lovely day; he has been up to 815mts again today, but fairly easy walking. Higher tomorrow over the pass.
He is staying in the 'hostal'; bed and breakfast, with supper promised for tonight. The albergue in town opens tomorrow! For lunch he had the 'menu del dia' Prawn Soup. The prawns still had their shells on, and were floating around with the spider crab claws. Terry says he'll try anything once, it was interesting! but he wouldn't really recommend it.
So far he has walked over 400km and has 'only' 220km more to go. He is beginning to believe that he can do it! The next two days will be hard walking, but he would like to reach Grandas de Salime on Sunday and then have a rest day on Monday. Hopefully there will be internet access so that he can send some more photos.

Terry continues to value your your prayers for determination and safety on The Way, and also for farmers and Farm Crisis Network (FCN)."
If you wish to make a donation to FCN please give on-line at :-
Just Giving - FCN. Thank you.
You can read more about FCN (Farm Crisis Network) at :-

PS: Supper was good. Soup with chorizo in it, chicken+veg omelette, meat+veg wrapped in a cabbage leaf, followed by Italian sponge cake. Like a python, going to sleep!

The pass at Levadoira

Thursday, 14 May 2009

Tineo to Campiello

11.50: Terry has reached Campiello, just before Borres, he is now 900 metres above sea level. He has decided to stay here in a Casa Rural (25eu for bed and a meal and very pilgrim friendly), rather than have to carry food on up to the albergue. The bar/shop is all part of the Casa.
It has been raining this morning, but he was able to take shelter so has not needed his cape. It was very wet for a few minutes.
13.30: He has gone into the bar/shop for his lunch. The sign in the shop says 'open 25 hours' !! He says it is like 'Open all Hours' - literally. They sell everything, all in together; dried cod, soap flakes, fruit,cheese etc. Herminia, the owner was happy for Terry to take the photo below.
After soup, steak and chips, bread yoghurt and a glass of wine he thought a siesta woould be good.
He had some supper there too and has spent the evening talking to the locals.
Tomorrow he is expecting to walk to Pola de Aliende and his hostess has said that she will give him breakfast before he leaves. She says he should not go before 9.00 as it may be cloudy/misty, and anyway he will arrive there by mid-day, so why hurry?! He is enjoying the mountains and does not want to hurry, and also local advice is always worth folowing, and he says he is 'listening to the Camino'.

Doña Herminia, owner of the shop and the Casa Rural, Campiello

Wednesday, 13 May 2009

Bodenaya to Tineo

700 metres above sea level:
12.30: Terry has booked into the albergue in Tineo. It is very big, clean and tidy.
This morning was fine, but clouds were building up after lunch. Nearly all the way today was on tracks. There was some mud and water but nothing above the laces level on his boots.
He has walked alone, but 4 other pilgrims have come into the albergue this afternoon. Salad and pizza for lunch and a tin of peaches, bread and chorizo tonight.
His e-mail said "Tineo is good, so different to Salas!" Terry says he would walk from Grado to Cornellana, then Bodenaya and miss Salas if he came this way again (he obviously was not keen on the place!).

The Camino into Tineo

View from the Camino towards the mountains

Between Tineo and Lugo it might be difficult to update daily, apart from estimating where Terry should be. It will depend on the availability of phone signals and the internet.

Tuesday, 12 May 2009

Salas to Bodenaya

Terry has stopped at Bodenaya, on the way to La Espina. He saw the albergue and the owner was on the road. They got talking and Terry decided to stay for the night as he liked the look of it. He says the albergue is lovely, all new and also 'donativo' only.
By 13.30 he had his washing done and hung out. The internet café did not have broadband, so he will look again tomorrow in Tineo. He should be there in good time as it is only about 12km.
After a fine morning the afternoon turned damp, so he took his washing inside. By supper time it was pouring with rain and his washing was in the drier!
19.00: The fire was lit and Terry was sitting in front of it with a glass of Vino Tinto.
20.15: Had supper, fideos and ensalada, which the hospitalero cooked. He will also get breakfast here before setting off again. his comment "I wish all albergues were like this" Certainly worth a visit and a good donation.

The 'jovenes' (young people) take 10 days from here to Santiago (253km), Terry plans to take 18, stopping in all the albergues he can find on the way to Lugo - 10 or 11 days walking. There is no snow now and none is expected so he will be going through/over the mountains.

Leaving Bodenaya

Monday, 11 May 2009

Grado to Salas

15.30: Terry has walked to Salas today. There were two diversions round roadworks and he arrived in the rain. He has had his full wet weather gear on as there was a thunderstorm. Effective, he was dry underneath it.
There would have been nowhere to dry anything in the albergue so he has gone up the road to the hotel, cost 15 euros. He thought it was worth the extra 10 euros to get things dry. He has hung his poncho and over-trousers up in the en-suite bathroom and put his boots on the window sill. He wiped some reproofer over them in Oviedo so his feet are nice and dry too.
Away from the coast it is much cheaper for overnight stops, and hopefully also for meals. He had found both accomodation (even albergues) and food quite expensive up to now.

When he can find an internet café there will be some more photos. He tried to send some photos in Oviedo, but without success, so will try again when possible.

Sunday, 10 May 2009

Oviedo to Grado


16.00: Terry says he has reached Grado and is staying in the hostal for the night, where there is a café below. The albergue is 3.5km further on and does not have food.
(Various friends told him to make sure he was well fed! This is the reason for the frequent comments on pizzas etc. Terry recommends the Bacalao a la Vizcaina* with ensalada mixta - which could have been enough for two!)
It has been hard and thirsty work walking because of the humidity. (2 litres of water plus coca cola and coffee.) Also Terry prefers the rural walking and way-marking. He got lost briefly leaving Oviedo and, as a result, went round the Plaza de Liberación twice before leaving town.
In Grado it is still very humid with thunder in the mountains, but only a few drops of rain so far.

*Cod in a tomato based sauce

Leaving Oviedo

Saturday, 9 May 2009


Terry has had a good rest. This morning he had a good lie in, and then has only pottered about, giving his feet a rest and his clothes a good wash. A 10" pizza for lunch; bread and goat's cheese for supper, to be followed by an early night.
Terry is enjoying talking to the locals in the various places he has passed through. The farmers with their cows; the people in the varous shops and cafés as well as the hospitaleros etc. Apparently Spanish milk cows like to listen to Radio 2!
He has also heard as he has walked of the problems facing tourism. Here in the province of Asturias tourism is 60% down on last year and some places have closed down. Along the Camino it is better, but there are few peregrinos (pilgrims). It is not only the farmers who need our prayers.

The Cathedral of San Salvador, Oviedo

Friday, 8 May 2009

Pola de Siero to Oviedo

13.10: Terry has reached Oviedo and has been to visit the cathedral of El Salvador and the earlier church, the Cámara Santa.
He plans a rest day tomorrow and to walk on again on Sunday. He has walked the section this week (from Llanes) quicker than he expected, but will keep his 'spare' day 'in hand' in case he needs to take longer further along the Way.
A decision on the Lugo or coast option will have to be made early next week, but he still hopes that the weather forecasts and snow line will permit him to go via Lugo. It was damp but warm this morning, fine this afternoon.
Terry says (as he did in an earlier post) "I would appreciate your prayers for determination and safety on The Way. Please pray also for farmers and for the work of Farm Crisis Network (FCN)."
You might wish to make a donation to FCN. If you can, please give on-line at :-

Just Giving FCN. Thank you.
You can read more about FCN (Farm Community Network) at :-

Leaving Pola de Siero
The way markings are set in the pavement.

Thursday, 7 May 2009

Villaviciosa to Pola de Siero

Terry arrived here at 16.00, and has booked into a hotel for the night. It was a hard walk up to the pass (400m) at La Campa. This morning was damp and there was mist at the top of the pass. From there the Way was along the road to Pola.
Just 17.5 km to Oviedo and a rest day on Saturday.

Misty Mountains 10 km from Villaviciosa - looking back to the Valdediós monastery

Wednesday, 6 May 2009

La Isla to Villaviciosa

I arrived in Villaviciosa at 15.30 and am staying in the hostel here.
Omelette sandwich for lunch and coca cola. That will keep me going until supper time.
Today was hot again, and very humid when it was cloudy. It was cloudy in the morning and clear in the afternoon, as it has been on other days.
The cows, near La Llera, were part of the biggest milk herd I've seen, 60 or so. They were cutting grass with a motor scythe and picking it up with tractor. Very modern. Most 'farms' seem to be part time. Some are still cutting grass by hand and talking it in to the cow with horse and cart.

Cows near La Llera

Last view of the estuary before turning inland to Villaviciosa

Tuesday, 5 May 2009

Llames to La Isla

Terry has walked an amazing 32km today, past Leces to La Isla and is in the albergue (hostel) there for the night.
It has been sunny all day. He arrived at 17.00 and by 17.50 he had his washing hung out and was going for a drink.
He is really pleased to have come so far today. He is expecting to reach Oviedo on Friday or Saturday, for another rest day. Then he will have to decide whether the weather permits turning towards Lugo. If not he will return to the coast on the train to pick up his route again as near as possible to where he left it.
The old 'Camino Real' comes off the beach at La Vega. Obviously the original 'way' and still had paving in some places, in others holes full of mud!! Everything was closed at La Vega except for a small 'kiosko' where the young chap made me a sandwich! Cheese and choritzos in a loaf of bread!!

An old bridge on the Camino Real

La Vega - the white kiosk is in front of the long dark building in the centre of the photo

Monday, 4 May 2009

Llanes to Nueva (near Llames)

No, it is not a spelling mistake!
Llames is on the coast, near Nueva which is 17km from Llanes. There is no food near the hostel, which is 1.5km further on, but here in Nueva there is a restaurant on the corner nearby, although it doesn't open until 20.30 tonight.
Terry set out at 9.15 wearing poncho and trousers and arrived at Nueva at 13.30. Near Barro he spoke to two very friendly farmers who were TB testing their cows (similar to Jerseys with long horns). Here they blame deer for the spread of the disease. They moved 5 cows off the road to let Terry through.
Part of the track along the cliff tops has collapsed into the sea. The route in one place now goes down onto the beach for several yards, then back up some steps. (OK if the tide is out!!) Along the road some cars and lorries give a cheerful toot as they pass. Encouraging - 'be kind to Pilgrims' .
Bread and cheese from the shop for lunch, and the lady in the shop gave Terry directions to a bed for tonight. Up an outside staircase to the 'front door' and then he was shown up to a very nice attic room, one of 5 with a shared bathroom. By 14.50 he had booked a bed for the night.
After the hectic week-end everything is shut today! he got a snack when the shop re-opened at 17.30 and then had a wander round to check out the start of the route for tomorrow. Supper will be at about 21.00 tonight.
He hopes to get past Ribadesella (8km) tomorrow and on to Leces (another 8km).

The 'shell' window at San Pedro de Prial, near Nueva
You can see the shell carved at the top of the arch

(click on the photo to enlarge it, then 'back' to return here)

Sunday, 3 May 2009


A rest day. Plenty of time to wander around the old part of Llanes with my Crocs on instead of boots. A beautiful place. If I wasn't needing to walk on I could stay here for a week quite happily. The Camino goes out of town past a tower in the old walls and I shall be going towards Ribadesella further along the coast.

Llanes and foothills of the Picos de Europa

Llanes harbour