PORTUGUESE CAMINO – Big Cities (6 – Final)


This is our last post on this series of the big cities on the Portuguese Camino. On this stage of the Camino, we walked only 121.6km in 6 days to finally reach Santiago de Compostela – the last big city and end of our Portuguese Camino.

Here’s a reminder, one last time, of the big cities we’ve covered on our Portuguese Camino:

  • Lisbon was the starting point of our Portuguese Camino in March 2018. This was a great city to introduce us to Portugal and we have fond memories of Lisbon. You can read about our first big city on the Portuguese Camino here.
  • Tomar is a medieval city that we wish we had more time to walk around here (if it wasn’t for my swollen ankle). It’s definitely a city we wouldn’t mind returning to. You can read about our second big city here.
  • Coimbra has some of the most beautiful church buildings and there is certainly no shortage of bars and restaurants. And don’t be like us – go visit that lovely old university. You can read about our third big city here.
  • Porto was a highlight on our Camino. Even in rainy weather we fell in love with this city. It’s no secret that we would love to visit Porto again. You can read about our fourth big city here and here.
  • Tui is the first Spanish city on the Portuguese Camino. There is not much we can say about this city as it took us a full day (and 44km) to walk from Caminha in Portugal to Tui in Spain. And that’s how we will remember Tui – a long challenging day to cross the border to Spain. You can read about our fifth big city (and the hiking of that day) here.

You will probably see a trend emerging in this post – there are quite a few hiking trails through forests and we end each day with a beer. Here are some of the highlights of our last six days on the Portuguese Camino:

Day 21: Porrino (18.4km):

Our first day of walking in Spain was a short day through woodlands and forests. One could describe it as a leisurely walk – it was almost as if the Camino wanted to give us time to reflect on our journey.

Scenic walk through a forest

Medieval stone bridge (Puente Orbenlle)

We saw so many horses on this Camino

It was a short day on the Camino and we arrived in Porrino at lunchtime. It is a small town with approximately 18,500 inhabitants. We did our laundry, enjoyed lunch and a beer, rested, walked around in the late afternoon while drinking another beer … and after that it was time to rest some more.

The small town of Porrino

(You can read about the hiking of Day 21 here)

Day 22: Redondela (16.1km)

It was an even shorter day than Day 21. There are beautiful routes through several small villages and green farm fields. We ended our day with an almost vertical descent before reaching Redondela.

Vertical descent (left) and a look back at the hill when we got down (right)

Our host for the evening, the very friendly Jose, invited us to join him later that evening to watch the sunset at Vigo Bay. And then it was time to enjoy a beer before bed.

Sunset at Vigo Bay

You will struggle to find better beers than the ones on the Camino

(You can read about the hiking of Day 22 here)

Day 23: Pontevedra (20.2km)

With only three more days of walking ahead of us, there were still beautiful sights to see on the Camino. We crossed the old stone bridge (Pontesampaio) over the Verdugo River in Arcade. This bridge was built in 1795 over earlier foundations.

Old stone bridge in Arcade, Pontesampaio

We were also privileged to walk on the ancient stone-paved pilgrim’s path (Brea Vella da Canicouva).

Ancient stone-paved pilgrim’s path

Scenic riverside walk

Pontevedra is the regional capital and has beautiful buildings. One of those buildings we just had to visit was the Santuario da Peregrina (Pilgrim’s Chapel). This beautiful 18th century pilgrimage chapel was built in the Baroque style. And then we ended our day … yes, with a beer!

Pilgrim’s Chapel

Beer time

(You can read about the hiking of Day 23 here)

Day 24: Caldas de Reis (22.2km)

We saw beautiful bridges on the Portuguese Camino – remember the ones in Porto? But for some reason the bridge just outside of Pontevedra was my favourite. The beautiful 12th century Burgo Bridge was picture perfect in the glory of the early morning sun.

Burgo Bridge

Walkways through green fields

On our route today we ran into soldiers. It was unexpected, because you rather expect pilgrims on your way. We think they might have been doing a training session (well, we hope they were). After reaching Caldas de Reis, our destination for the day, we saw them marching across the bridge.

Soldiers (and not pilgrims) on the way

In Caldas de Reis, along the shady banks of the Umia River, is a lovely botanical garden. We spent some time here while sipping a glass of wine.

Botanical garden next to the Umia River

Wine time

(You can read about the hiking of Day 24 here)

Day 25: Padron (19.1km)

This was our second last day on the Portuguese Camino. And we walked it with a heavy heart … it was hard to think that our journey had to come to an end. But I was quickly cheered up when I saw a woman with sheep on a leash. I have never seen sheep walk so obediently!

Sheep on a leash

Streams in a forest

Padron is only 20km south of Santiago de Compostela and we found many pilgrims in the town when we got there. This was no surprise as it is the last town before we reach our final destination of the Portuguese Camino.

Interesting trees in Padron

Beer time (again)

(You can read about the hiking of Day 25 here)

Day 26: Santiago de Compostela (25.6km)

After walking 620km for 25 days, it was our last day on the Portuguese Camino. It was great to walk in sunny weather on our last day … long forgotten are those rainy days now!

Church and Cemetery in Iria Flavia

Beautiful country lanes at Faramello

After Faramello we came across one of the oldest wayside crosses in Galicia. The forest paths were beautiful and it was such a peaceful walk. In our original post about this day, I wrote that it was the perfect route to follow on our last day. We actually felt ready to end our trip now and were looking forward to standing in front of the Cathedral in Santiago again.

“Cruceiro do Francos” – one of the oldest wayside crosses in Galicia

Last few kilometers through a forest

We started at 620km. Now it was less than 10km to Santiago

Which way? Oh well, both are leading to Santiago

After following the exact route that pilgrims from Portugal have walked since the 11th century (1078), we walked up to the Cathedral. And all I can say, is to repeat what Berto said on that day back in April 2018: “We did it … again”.

Cathedral in Santiago de Compostela

The end of our Portuguese Camino

We sat on the ground in front of the cathedral for quite some time – quiet and just watching all the pilgrims and tourists who came and went. At first there were only a few people, but as time went by, more and more people arrived.

When we arrived, there were only a few people

The square in front of the Cathedral quickly filled with people

Front door of one of the oldest and most luxurious hotels in all of Spain, the Parador de Santiago de Compostela

Engraving on the wall of the Parador Hotel. It was originally built in 1499 as a hospital for the sick and weary pilgrims

No, we didn’t stay in the Parador Hotel, but in a rather modest hostel further down the road. Although not as luxurious as the Parador Hotel, it had a lovely green lawn. We put our backpacks and shoes aside and then walked across the soft grass to the river where we sat with our feet in the water.

The green lawn in front of our hostel

After a while, we checked into our accommodation and then walked through the Old Town of Santiago to enjoy our very last beer on the Camino.

Walking through The Old Town of Santiago

Walkway in The Old Town

The ultimate beer

Back at our hostel, we stood on the terrace from where we could see the Cathedral’s towers. It was such an amazing journey – one we will never forget.

The Cathedral’s towers

Thank you for walking the Portuguese Camino with us one last time. It was nice to have you all with us.

(You can read about the hiking of our final day, Day 26 here)


38 thoughts on “PORTUGUESE CAMINO – Big Cities (6 – Final)

    1. Ha, jy’s reg … ons het regtig al die seisoene ervaar. Ek weet nou dat ek nie eintlik baie daarvan hou om in die reen te stap nie! Kan jy glo – die skape op ‘n leiband!! Ek sien al ons boere hier in SA wat hulle skape op leiband sit 😅. Dit was ‘n wonderlike ervaring – eendag is ons dalk gelukkig om weer so iets te doen, wie weet?

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Haha 😁, the sheep on a leash was exactly what I needed to see that day … we had such a good laugh! And yes, we also thought the hotel was a church at first – apparently it’s really nice inside. But our pilgrim wallets were a bit thin to stay there for a night!

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Jy’s reg Aletta, daar is soveel mooi plekke … en dis veral die klein plekkies wat jy net sal sien as jy stap. Alhoewel, die kus gedeelte vanaf Porto kan mens maklik met ‘n motor of bus verken (en dit was ook die mooiste gedeelte van die Portuguese Camino). Soms voel dit onwerklik dat ons so ver gestap het – maar dis net weereens ‘n bewys dat mens baie meer kan doen as wat jy dink moontlik is.


    1. The last few days of walking through the forests were just what we needed to calm down before arriving in Santiago. Of course, there are many ways to get to Santiago … fly, bus, train, car, bicycle (and as my brother would say: “on foot when none of the above are available” 😁). You are so close (well , closer than me anyway) – I hope to read about your visit to Santiago de Compostela one day.


  1. You had some beautiful weather on those last few days to match the beautiful scenery 🙂 And I bet those beers looked pretty beautiful to you too after each day’s walking 😆

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh Sarah, we were so happy to walk in sunshine for the last week! The world only looks different when the sky is blue (and your clothes are dry) 😉. I’d be lying if I told you I didn’t look forward to a glass of beer at the end of each day!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. All your photos are lovely but I particularly like the first one of Berto in the forest and the old stone bridge. What a great way to thoroughly see a country; if my joints were in better condition I’d love to walk the Portuguese Camino.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes, the bridges on the Portuguese Camino were so beautiful (I think we easily have 100 photos just of all the bridges 🙃). We’d love to do another Camino one day … but you’re not getting any younger, right. Maybe, if we walk another Camino, we should stick to 10km a day!

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you very much. It’s so much more than we ever thought we could do. It was definitely a mind changer (in a positive way). Our lives are much simpler these days, but we are so much happier (and more content).

      Liked by 1 person

    1. It was definitely epic Marion 🙂. Tough at sometimes, but we have the most beautiful memories of Portugal. Oh, staying in the Parador Hotels sounds wonderful … I can’t wait to see photos of when you stay there!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Corna, al hierdie fotos en mooi herrinneringe wat julle het om met ons te deel, wat ñ voorreg! Ek sal nou altyd aan Portugal dink met julle twee wat daar iewers aan die stap is.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I was very happy about the sunny weather (funny how quickly you forget about those rainy days when the sun shines so nicely) 😄. And thank you Linda that you also walked with us all the way … I feel like I need to rest a bit now!

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Baie dankie Christa. Beide Portugal en Spanje is pragtige lande en daar’s hope geleenthede om mooi foto’s te neem. Ek dink nie ek sal nou maklik weer so ver kan stap nie – hopeloos te onfiks – maar dit sal lekker wees om weer so ‘n avontuur aan te pak … miskien eendag.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. You are right Diane, those last few days of walking through the woods were such a wonderful end to our Camino. What can I say … we have so many beer photos 🙃. Thanks for reading about our last major city on the Portuguese Camino.


  4. Thank you for the amazing shares and for taking me along to experience Camino walk through your wonderful writing. Such a beautiful way to end and reflect about your journey, wow!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m so glad you walked with us Henrietta. To some extent, I’m glad I stopped writing about our Camino’s now … it just gave me itchy feet 😄. Thank you very much for reading (and walking) along, it was lovely for us to share this journey with you.


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