Routes in Spain

The first three of the French routes meet just north of St Jean Pied-de-Port in the foothills of the Pyrenees, which the path then crosses via the valley of Roncesvalles (c. 740 km from Santiago).  The Arles route crosses the mountains by the Somport pass (ca 840 km from Santiago) to Jaca, and joins the other route at Puente la Reina, a little south-west of Pamplona.  Thereafter the Camino Francés (more details here) runs through Logroño to Burgos; then across the Castillian meseta to León; and finally over two more mountain ranges to reach Galicia. There is accommodation for pilgrims at frequent intervals all along this route, and it is thoroughly waymarked.

The subsidiary Ruta del Norte or Camino de la Costa runs along the north coast of Spain (more details here), with branches at intervals down to the Camino Francés e.g. via the San Adrian Tunnel to Santo Domingo de la Calzada (more…) or from Oviedo to Lugo (more…), and thence to Palas do Rey. Much of the route follows roads. The waymarking is generally good, and the accommodation is not as plentiful as on the Camino Frances, but is adequate.  For more detailed information about the coastal routes, visit Eric Walker’s website.

The Vía de la Plata  runs north from Seville via old tracks and roman roads to join the Camino francés at Astorga (734 km from Seville).  It is well waymarked, and there is adequate  accommodation, though very few refugios (more info here). For a full description, visit the Amigos del Camino de Santiago de Sevilla’s Via de la Plata website.  The popular variant route, the Via Sanabriense, which runs directly through Galicia via Puebla de Sanabria and Ourense is also fully waymarked.  The Camino Mozárabe runs from Granada (more..)  or Málaga (more…) to join the Via de la Plata at Mérida. The Camino Portugues de la Vía de la Plata (more ..), a variant route from Zamora, runs through the northern part of Portugal, via Bragança and Verín, to rejoin the Via Sanabriense at Ourense.

The much shorter Camino Inglés runs from La Coruña and Ferrol to Santiago: it is the route which British and other pilgrims arriving from northern countries by sea followed to reach Santiago. The waymarking is good on the two main branches of this route. Click here for more details.

The route from Madrid (676 km from Santiago) runs 320 km via Segovia to join the Camino Francés at Sahagún (More details here).  For a full description of the route (in Spanish), with details of facilities available, visit the website of the Amigos del Camino de Santiago de Madrid.

The Cami de Llevant or Camino de Levante runs from Valencia via Albacete, Toledo, Avila and Zamora to Santiago (1300 km) (More details here…). Click here for a useful Spanish website, and  click here for a variant of the route starting in Alicante.

The 85 km. path from Santiago through the mountains to Finisterre and on to Muxia (Sanctuary of  Our Lady of the Ship) is now well waymarked. (More info here)

You will find fuller descriptions of all the Spanish routes (in Spanish) on the website of the Spanish Federation of pilgrim associations.

(Confraternity Guides to all the main Spanish routes are available from our online shop)

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