(* Remember that the check-In date is the night before starting walking)
The Camino Primitivo starts in San Salvador Cathedral In Oviedo. In the first kilometers we will get to Santiago de Paniceres and to the Carmen Chapel. We will continue along a sinuous path that goes across small villages without many services for pilgrims up to reach the top of El Escamplero, the only difficulty part of this day. In the last part of the stage we cross the Andallón river to reach Premoño, L´Arache and Peñaflor before arriving at Grado.
From Grado, after a steep climb, we will reach San Juan de Villapañada.Then, we go up to the Sanctuary of the Virgen del Fresno. From here, we begin the descent that will take us to San Marcelo and Doriga, with its Church of Santa Eulalia de Doriga and the Palace. We cross the Narcea River and we will have arrived at the monastery of San Salvador where we will have a little break before facing the top of Santa Eufemia. The final part of the stage takes us through Quintana and the church of Santiago de Villazón before arriving at Casazorrina and Salas with its charming old town.
After visiting the Palace of Valdés, we continue our route up to the top of Porciles. We go through the district of Bodenaya to reach the towns of La Espina, La Pereda, with its Chapel of Cristo de los Afligidos and El Pedregal. In Santa Eulalia we still can visit an old mansion that was a hospital for pilgrims, still preserved. The end of this stage is located in Tineo where the pilgrims will find all the services they need.
The next stages are a little bit harder since we will leave behind the smooth valleys and we will start walking in the mountains, some of which overcome 1000 meters high. We leave Tineo by the Camino de la Sierra that leads us to the viewpoint of Letizia. Then we go down to Piedratecha and the monastery of Santa Maria Real de Obona. We will find different villages and we will finally arrive at Borres. The final part of this stage takes us to the top de Lavadoira and the village of Ferroy before reaching Pola de Allande.
This is one of the most beautiful stages of the Camino Primitivo but with some difficulties as well. In this case, the ascent to Puerto del Palo is a tough climb that will take us up to reach 1100 meters high. The scenery is spectacular and we could see both the way we have already walked and the way that remains for today. In the second part of the day, we will go down very carefully by the villages of Montefurado, Lago, Berducedo and Mesa, which is the end of this beautiful stage.
Short but no less complicated stage, since we have a strong descent until arriving at the reservoir of Salime. We won´t find many services in the Camino today. Before leaving La Mesa, we may visit the church of Santa Maria Magdalena and then go to Buspol. Here, we will start a sharp descent among trees up to arrive at the reservoir. After crossing the reservoir, we continue our way to Grandas.
We will arrive in Galicia during this stage of the Camino Primitivo. We leave Grandas after visiting the ex-collegiate of San Salvador and start an easy climb that will take us through villages without no very many services for pilgrims. We will get to the Alto do Acebo, which represents the great difficulty of the day due to its 1100 meters high, but it offers a gorgeous panoramic view from up there. Then, we will continue to the villages of Cabreira, Fonfría, Barbeitos, Silvela, Paradanova and finally, A Fonsagrada. We can visit here Fons Sacrata, the church and the old hospital.
The stage between A Fonsagrada and O Cádavo runs through forest trails with the beautiful mountain landscapes of the province of Lugo. We will pass through small villages with its ancient "pallozas" and with no very many services for pilgrims with the exception of the bar in Paradavella. We will also see the Hospital of Montouto, which was the last hospital active for pilgrims. In the last part of this stage, we will have to overcame the rather hard ascent to A Lastra and Alto de Fontaneira before reaching O Cádavo; the end for today and with all services available for walkers.
This stage will takes us to Lugo in a continuous going down, but before, we will have to face the last high part of the Camino Primitivo, Alto da Vaqueriza. From there, the descent leads us to Castroverde, with all services necessary for the pilgrim, and then we will walk along many Galician rural villages. We will arrive at Lugo in a very confortable way without making a great effort. We have to go across the river and surround the spectacular Roman wall.
The landscape changes from Lugo to the to the confluence with the French Camino in Melide. We leave the city by the Roman bridge over the Minho River. We have left the mountains behind and now we set out in a quite flat land walking along local roads through typical Galician villages, so we won´t find many services for pilgrims with the exception of San Vicente de Burgo, where there is an Inn. From there, we will arrive at San Romao de Retorta, a great Jacobean tradition place, where we can visit a replica of the Roman milestone. We will finish in Ponte Ferreira.
We leave Ponte Ferreira to find the French Camino. In Melide we will join our adventure with those who are travelling the busiest Camino. But before, we will go along the villages of Guntín, Palas de Rei, Toques and Melide and we will have to go across Serra do Careón which divides both provinces. This stage has not very many services up to arrive at Melide
Once in Melide, we advise you to visit the old part of this town so tied to the Jacobean Tradition. We will start walking along beautiful forests up to Arzua. We will see the typical villages as well as the local people so accustomed to the slow walking of the pilgrims. We will reach Arzua after going across the medieval bridge over the Diso river.
Santiago is getting closer and that fact will make us feel excited to arrive and a little bit sad at the same time. The way leaves Arzua through some villages full of farms where it is produced the delicious local cheese. From Salceda we continue our way near the national road to Santa Irene, Rua and Pedrouzo.
The last stage starts walking along paths within eucalyptus forests until arriving Cimadevilla and San Paio. In the village of Lavacolla, the medieval pilgrims stopped to wash themselves before embracing the apostle. In the last kilometers we go through San Marcos before reaching the Monte do Gozo, from where we can already see the Cathedral. We get into Santiago de Compostela by the distrtict of San Lazaro. Plaza del Obradoiro is the end of this journey which will not leave anyone indifferent.