The road to Santiago

Today’s journey started with some rain and a lovely path through a eucalyptus forest. Have I mentioned how wonderfully refreshing that smells?

There were a lot more pilgrims on the road today and we met a few we hadn’t seen in a few days. Some of the Belgian kids were limping and suffering nasty blisters. We caught up to Rita and David who were on their last day of over a month and 900 kilometres. They were feeling tired and ready to go home.

The rain let up for a few hours and the walk was pleasant with a nice cool temperature and a bit of a breeze. The wind picked up but still it was pleasant as we had a few good hills to climb. Just outside Santiago we were investing some interesting rock creations through a locked gate when a man came and let us in. We walked around for a bit, took some photos, thanked him and carried on.

Upon entering the city of Santiago we got excited, thinking the end was near ….but it went on and on and on. Santiago de Compostela is huge. Finally we entered the old city and the rain started again. We covered in ponchos and carried on.  It was nice to have the Belgian teachers there greeting the students as we felt welcomed as well. 🙂

The church is massive and we had no idea where to go to get our compostela or certificate of completion so we asked, wandered and eventually found the pilgrim’s office. Then to find our hotel in the mass confusion of steps, streets and alleyways that is the old city of Santiago.  There are still “portes”  which were once gates in the wall that surrounded the 11th century city. When we finally found our hotel we were pleasantly surprised by the size of our “apartment” on 2 floors and we each get our own room.  Like everything in the old city, it had 2′ thick stone walls, shutters on the windows, heavy doors and wood ceilings.

After settling in, we met with Wiktoria of Camino travels. She wanted our feedback and was happy we’d thoroughly enjoyed the experience. We went out together and enjoyed an empanada, Spanish tortilla and of course, red wine. By the time we got back we were thoroughly exhausted and ready for bed.

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Entering Santiago....but still 5 km or so to go.

Entering Santiago….but still 5 km or so to go.

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Strange plant in someone’s garden

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Chickens on the bottom. Grain on the top.

Chickens on the bottom. Grain on the top.

Eucalyptus forest

Eucalyptus forest

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Statue for pilgrims on the hill before entering Santiago

Statue for pilgrims on the hill before entering Santiago

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Odd sculptures created out of granite

We can see the Cathedral! Almost there....

We can see the Cathedral! Almost there….

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The Cathedral

The Cathedral

Inside the incredible Cathedral

Inside the incredible Cathedral

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