“The first stage of the English Route to Santiago de Compostela.”
— Jessica Darago
Need to Know
Peregrinos looking to shorten the route sometimes cross the bridge at Avenida das Pias, which quick-hops you from mile 4 to mile 13. Keep in mind, you need a total of 100 km to receive a Compostela for your walk, so don't take short cuts lightly.
One of the traditional medieval pilgrimage routes to the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela, called the Camino de Santiago (or, in English, The Way of St. James).
Originally, pilgrims from England would sail from Portsmouth to A Coruna and begin the journey there; the modern route begins at Ferrol to meet the 100 km requirement for receiving a Compostela (certificate of completion). The recommended route takes 5 or 6 days. This is Day 1 of the 5-day version.
The Camino begins near the tourist office in Ferrol. As of October 2017, the trail is poorly marked through the city, but make your way to the cathedral via the Rua San Francisco, and you'll see a marker on the left side of the road. From there, take the pedestrian Rua Real through the city to the waterfront, where the markers pick up. As long as the water is on your right, you're fine.
What begins as an urban run becomes a beautiful countryside stroll. There are plenty of services along the route. The midway point at Xuvia is a big town and a good place to stop for lunch. The only really challenging section begins around mile 13.5, as you head into Pontedueme.