Trip Overview

Travel to Spain with AdventureWomen during a rare holy year for a nine-day hiking trip in 2021 on the Sanabrés Route in Galicia, a portion of the historic Camino de Santiago route walked by centuries of pilgrims. Travel over ancient bridges, visit local churches and monasteries, then relax in thermal baths with spa treatments and enjoy the warm hospitality of northwestern Spain.

Join AdventureWomen on this iconic hike on the Camino de Santiago alongside other intrepid women who share your interest in exploring this storied part of pastoral Galicia, a walk made richer by hiking together. 2021 is a holy year on the Camino, which happens whenever July 25th falls on a Sunday; there are only 14 holy years each century. The Puerta del Perdón, a door into the Cathedral of Santiago at the Plaza Quintana, is only open during a holy year. As you travel the Sanabrés Route, also known as the Mozárabe Route, you’ll cover an average of eight miles a day as you watch for symbols and relics left by 800 centuries of the passing faithful. Since the 1st century AD, spiritual pilgrims have humbly walked the Camino de Santiago to reach the tomb of the Apostle James resting under the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela, and they were cared for along the Way by compassionate locals. This trail continues to attract millions, and residents still offer hospitality to those making the long trek across Spain.

Meet your fellow AdventureWomen travelers in Porto for a lively welcome dinner and share stories to learn about why each of you is excited to walk the Camino. Get to know your local guide versed in the history, culture, and cuisine of this sacred region. You are also accompanied by an AdventureWomen Ambassador, committed to helping make your experience a fun and personally rewarding adventure, and cheering you on as you reach beyond your comfort zone to take on new challenges in your own unique way!

Begin in the “thermal city” of Ourense, where a bathing suit is as important as boots. Ourense is best known for its thermal baths, heated Mino River, and pure drinking water pouring from stone fountains. Pick up a pilgrim’s pass, Credencial del Peregrino, in Ourense and make sure to have it stamped along the Way. Enjoy comfortable lodging and a luxuriating dip in the As Burga and Outariz Burga thermal baths, then strike out over ancient cobblestones, rocky trails, and occasional asphalt to Tamallancos, a funky mix of centuries-old stone and modern buildings. Here, the hosts at your comfortable guest home will follow tradition in the morning by ensuring that each AdventureWomen traveler has enough delicious food and plenty of water for the day. On your way to Cea, you’ll cross the 13th century stone Sobreira Bridge of Sobreira over the Barbatino River and continue the hamlet of Faramontaos. The bread of Cea is the only bread of Spain to receive a Protected Geographical Indication by the European Union. Be sure to visit a bakery to learn about the bread-making tradition with recipes that have been passed down since the 13th century. Visit Dozon, a truly charming farming village where you can indulge your trail-tested body with a well-earned massage or body wrap!

The next day, muscles loosened and energies restored, cross Silleda Ponte, a colossal moss-crowned bridge, into fragrant woodlands of eucalyptus and past thriving farms to reach Silleda, soaking in the reverent feeling as you walk the Way.

Refuel with Bandeira’s famous empanadas, stop to contemplate Pico Sacro, Galicia’s most sacred mountain, then continue past many small churches, villages, and hamlets to reach Ulla. Here you’ll get your Camino de Santiago credentials stamped as a “Hiker of the Way”! End your day with a dunk in the waterfall and swimming pool near the elegant 18th century country home near Lestedo where you’ll spend the night.

From Lestedo, it’s just eight miles more to reach the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela. Get your Camino de Santiago pilgrim’s certificate first, then tour Santiago before a fantastic farewell dinner. You each may have had a different reason for hiking the Way, but everyone can agree that walking Camino Sanabrés together made this special experience one for the ages!

Main Attractions

  • Hike the less-traveled Sanabrés Way on the famous Camino de Santiago during a holy year
  • Enjoy spectacular woodlands while you walk this ancient pilgrimage path
  • Soak in natural thermal pools & enjoy spa treatments along your hike
  • Indulge in the delicious local Spanish food in Galicia
  • Earn your pilgrim’s certificate after successfully reaching the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela 

What You'll See and Do

  • Anthropology
  • Architecture
  • Cooking Class
  • Cultural Exploration
  • Hiking
  • Historical Sites
  • Hot Springs
  • Local Delicacies
  • Spa Element
  • Walking
  • Wine Tasting

If you're curious about this trip, we would be happy to answer any questions you might have.

Call us ~ 1.800.804.8686

Trip Itinerary

Day 1

Arrive in Porto
Welcome to Portugal and Spain! 2021 is a rare holy year on the Sanabrés Route in Galicia, a portion of the historic Camino de Santiago route walked by centuries of pilgrims. Travel over ancient bridges, visit local churches and monasteries, then relax in thermal baths with spa treatments and enjoy the warm hospitality of northwestern Spain.

During your adventure, you’ll get to know your expert local guide versed in the history, culture, and cuisine of this sacred region. You are also accompanied by an AdventureWomen Ambassador, committed to helping make your experience a fun and personally rewarding adventure, and cheering you on as you reach beyond your comfort zone to take on new challenges in your own unique way!

You will be met at the Porto Airport and transferred to your hotel. One group transfer is included (time TBD); private transfers at other times are available for an additional fee. (If you’d like to come in early, we can extend your stay at your hotel, but these hotels fill up early, so please ask us as soon as you can!)

Enjoy a lively welcome dinner as you get to know your fellow travelers this evening. Share stories and learn about why each woman in your trip is excited to walk the Camino!
Dinner

Overnight: Carris Hotel Porto Ribeira

Day 2

Porto to the Sanabrés Route
Take the morning to explore the town of Porto on your own. Head to the lighthouse in Foz de Douro for a spectacular view (accessible by tramway) over the ocean and take your time to discover the city’s hidden gems such as its train station, the Lello library, and its Cathedral.

You’ll arrive in Ourense in time to head out for lunch on your own after checking into the hotel.

For those who want to visit the hot springs, meet at 5:00pm and head out for an hour-long soak in the thermal baths.

Head to the Cathedral of Ourense, a 12th century Roman Catholic Church dedicated to San Martiño for the 8:00pm Pilgrim Mass. Receive your first stamp of the Camino!

You’re in Spain, so head out for a special dinner at 9:00pm!
Breakfast, Dinner

Overnight: Hotel Barcelo

Day 3

The Sanabrés Route
If you didn’t get your first stamp last night, be sure to get it from the hotel or the Cathedral before you leave. You need the stamp to get your Compostela, the Certificate of Achievement, upon arrival in Santiago.

Drive to the outskirts of Ourense where you’ll start your hike. There are two routes today, but you will take the slightly longer one to Tamallancos, as it avoids a difficult climb on asphalt. Stop for lunch on your own in Tamallancos, where there are a few options to choose from.

On the way to Cea, you’ll pass the 13th century bridge of Sobreira over the Barbatiño River and continue to the hamlet of Faramontaos. Arrive in Cea this afternoon, a small village that is famous across Spain for its bread!

The bread of Cea is the only bread of Spain to receive a Protected Geographical Indication by the European Union. The bread can only be made using flour, water, salt, and yeast in wood-fired stone ovens. Visit one of these bakeries to learn about the bread-making tradition with recipes that have been passed down since the 13th century.

Drive 20 minutes back to Ourense where you’ll have some free time before dinner this evening.

Today’s Hike: 11 miles
Breakfast, Dinner

Overnight: Hotel Barcelo

Day 4

The Sanabrés Route
Depart your hotel and drive about 20 minutes to where you will start today’s hike. Walk for about three hours and arrive at the Oseira, where you will enjoy a guided tour with one of the few resident monks who live at this 12th century Trappist monastery dedicated to the pilgrimage to Santiago.

Within the monastery there is a room dedicated to Hildegard von Bingen, the woman who founded scientific natural history in Germany. Learn about her work and how it was used in the monastery at the time.

Enjoy lunch on your own before continuing your hike. Continue on for about six miles through forests toward Castor Dozon. There will be more ups and downs in this section.

Enjoy some free time at your hotel and have dinner as a group this evening.

Today’s Hike: 12 miles
Breakfast, Dinner

Overnight: Pazo de Bendoiro

Day 5

The Sanabrés Route
Drive from your hotel back to Dozon in the morning, where you’ll start your hike through farmlands and walk past several medieval hamlets. The beautiful oak woods of the interior of Galicia greet you as you enjoy the mostly downhill walk from this point all the way to Santiago. There will be a few small climbs, but most of the path is downhill.

Enjoy lunch on your own by the Lalin train station about four miles before A Laxe.

Drive back to your hotel in Dozon. Take some time this evening to learn to cook some regional specialties with your new AdventureWomen friends. After you try your hand with local recipes, enjoy what you’ve cooked as a group for dinner!

Today’s Hike: 9.5 miles
Breakfast, Dinner

Overnight: Pazo de Bendoiro

Day 6

The Sanabrés Route
The walk today is easy and pleasant, through woodlands, farmland, and small villages. Later in the day, you might find that there is a bit more asphalt than you’ve come to see; you will have to border an industrial estate for a mile or so before reaching Silleda. There are a lot of wonderful options for lunch in Silleda.

This evening, head to a local spa to enjoy the baths and pools. Flip flops and bathing caps are required.

After some relaxation time, enjoy dinner with your group before getting a good night’s sleep.

Today’s Hike: 11 miles
Breakfast, Dinner

Overnight: Pazo de Bendoiro

Day 7

The Sanabrés Route
As you approach Santiago de Compostela, enjoy a pleasant walk along a beautiful path, taking in views of successive crosses, bridges, and chapels. Pass the church of San Miguel de Castro, an impressive railway bridge, and walk by the hamlets of Noveledo and Hundían. There will be a sharp descent into Ponte Ulla; be sure to take the time to visit the old castle and the Church of Santa Maria da Magdalena. Get your stamp for the Camino in the albergue.

Have lunch on your own in Ponte Ulla. End today’s walk at the foot of the great mountain, Pico Sacro. You’ll be driven up to the top where you can enjoy spectacular views of the countryside. Learn about some of the legends of Queen Lupa, the Dragon that transformed into this great mountain.

Enjoy free time at your hotel until dinner this evening.

Today’s Hike: 12.5 miles
Breakfast, Dinner

Overnight: Hotel Congreso

Day 8

The Sanabrés Route to Santiago de Comopostela
This is it! Only eight miles separates you from your goal – the resting place of the Apostle of Saint James in the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela.

Walk past the hamlets of Ardariz and Rubial before entering Marrozos, the first village in the council of Santiago. You’ll notice the City of Culture on the top of Mount Gaiás, an extravagant architectural and cultural project that includes a huge library and museum themed around the Camino. Join the Camino Real de Angrois and enter the Santiago neighborhood of Sar.

You’ll get your first glimpse of the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela as you enter the historic center of Santiago through the Porta de Mazarelos, the only original remaining door to the medieval walled city. Reach the Plaza del Obradoiro where the Cathedral will present itself to you, majestic and beautiful. Take a breath and pause – you’ve made it!

You will be presented with your Compostela, or Certificate of Achievement of the Camino de Santiago given by the Pilgrim Office. The Cathedral of St. James is currently undergoing renovations, so you can visit the Cathedral but there are not currently services for pilgrims to attend inside the Cathedral. (Note: the Cathedral should be open for 2021 as it is a Holy Year. Stay tuned)

Enjoy a farewell dinner to toast the end of a spectacular adventure. We’re sure that the Camino has helped you find what you were looking for, or that you have found something unexpected along the way!

Today’s Hike: 8 miles
Breakfast, Dinner

Overnight: Hotel Compostela

Day 9

Depart Spain
Enjoy one last morning in Santiago before heading home.

Say goodbye to your new AdventureWomen friends as you transfer to the airport for your flights home. One group transfer is included; private transfers at other times can be arranged for an additional fee.

If you’d like to stay longer in Santiago, we can try to extend your hotel reservation, but please do not wait. 2021 is a Holy Year, and the hotels will fill up extremely early.
Breakfast

Please note: AdventureWomen will attempt to adhere to the itinerary as much as possible. However, certain conditions (political, climatic, environmental, and cultural) may necessitate changes in the itinerary. AdventureWomen reserves the right to alter any itinerary at any time, if necessary. We will attempt to notify participants of changes as far in advance as possible. Costs incurred by such changes will be the responsibility of the participants. 

If you're curious about this trip, we would be happy to answer any questions you might have.

Call us ~ 1.800.804.8686

Traveling to Spain



Arrival and Departure Information

May 28th Departure:

Arrive in Porto, Portugal (OPO) on May 28, 2021 before 12:00pm. One group transfer is included (time TBD); private transfers at other times can be arranged for an additional fee.

Depart Santiago de Compostela (SCQ) on June 5, 2021. One group transfer is included (time TBD); private transfers at other times can be arranged for an additional fee.

September 17th Departure:

Arrive in Porto, Portugal (OPO) on September 17, 2021 before 12:00pm. One group transfer is included (time TBD); private transfers at other times can be arranged for an additional fee.

Depart Santiago de Compostela (SCQ) on September 25, 2021. One group transfer is included (time TBD); private transfers at other times can be arranged for an additional fee.

We are happy to help you make your flight and travel arrangements. If you’d like to do anything prior to or following the AdventureWomen trip, we’d be delighted to help you arrange any trip extensions you’re interested in.

Note: The recent trend in travel is for travelers to finalize their plans much closer to departure time than was customary in the past. While we try to be as flexible as possible booking last-minute registrants, we must release hotel rooms two to three months prior to departure! Please keep this in mind when making your travel plans.

Passports and Visas

Citizens of the United States must have a passport valid for six months beyond your travel dates with at least two blank facing pages. If you do not have a passport, please apply now!

Activity Level

We rate this trip as High Energy. Our High Energy adventures are designed for women who enjoy a physical challenge and crave being on the go! You should be prepared for itineraries that include (but are not limited to): a full day of biking on rolling terrain, hiking 5-8 miles on moderate to steep trails, being active at high altitudes, whitewater rafting, or skiing. Please note that this is a general description of what you might encounter; for specific details about your trip, please consult the itinerary.

We recommend training before your trip (with your doctor’s permission!) to make the most of your adventure. We have a partnership with FitForTrips, a company that will design an individualized fitness plan for you with this itinerary in mind. Best of all, AdventureWomen guests get a 25% discount with the code FITWOMEN. Learn more on the FitForTrips website.

You should come with a flexible, adventurous, and enthusiastic spirit, and a wonderful sense of humor that adventure travel requires.

Health Considerations

Make an appointment with a travel clinic. There are no immunization requirements for travel to Portugal or Spain, however your local travel clinic may have recommendations for you based on your age, health, and past vaccination history.

For more health information, go to www.cdc.gov/travel and navigate to the pages about Portugal and Spain.

How to Register

Call the AdventureWomen office at (800) 804-8686 to determine space availability and register for this trip. We can complete your registration, including taking your credit card deposit over the phone.

If you prefer, you can register online by clicking “Sign Up for this Trip” on the trip page.

Please be sure to read the AdventureWomen policies before registering!

Preparation and Packing

Once you register for your adventure, we will send you a comprehensive preparation guide including weather information, gratuity suggestions, and a packing list.

As a reference, AdventureWomen typically suggests $200-250 for gratuities on most trips. Detailed information will be provided to you prior to departure.

Forms and Final Payment

The deposit for this trip is $800, and is nonrefundable and nontransferable. Once you book, you will need to fill out and return to AdventureWomen:

  • Information Form
  • Booking Conditions Form
  • Copy of Flight Information
  • Copy of Issuing Page of Passport (Photo Page)

Final payment is due to AdventureWomen in a cash form (check, money order, or wire transfer). A maximum of $1,500 per person can be put on a credit card, which includes your deposit.

May 28th Departure Final Payment Due Date: February 27, 2021

September 17th Departure Final Payment Due Date: June 19, 2021

If you're curious about this trip, we would be happy to answer any questions you might have.

Call us ~ 1.800.804.8686

What's Included

Included

  • Accommodations as per itinerary based on double occupancy
  • All meals as listed in the itinerary
  • All ground transportation
  • One group transfer on arrival and departure days
  • Luggage transfers from hotel to hotel
  • Fully-guided sightseeing as indicated in the itinerary
  • English-speaking hiking guide throughout the trip
  • Drinking water to refill personal bottles
  • Gratuities for baggage handling, waitstaff, hotel staff

Not Included

  • International airfare to Portugal and from Spain
  • Optional activities
  • Meals not specified in the itinerary
  • Alcoholic beverages (unless otherwise specified)
  • Fees for passport, visas, immunizations, or travel insurance
  • Cost of hospitalization or evacuation
  • Items of a personal nature
  • Gratuities for guides and drivers

If you're curious about this trip, we would be happy to answer any questions you might have.

Call us ~ 1.800.804.8686

Accommodations

Carris Hotel Porto Ribeira

This renovated historic building in the Ribeira district of Porto offers a comfortable room to begin your Camino adventure. Enjoy exploring Porto on foot from this well-located hotel.

Amenities:
Coming soon

Hotel Barcelo

This hotel is in the heart of Ourense, christened by the Romans as the “city of gold”. The streets of this Galician capital, famous for its thermal springs, reveal its fresh and modern character, evident in its extraordinary cuisine and in the warmth of its people.

Amenities:
Coming soon

Pazo de Bendoiro Hotel

Located in Bendoiro and surrounded by greenery, Pazo de Bendoiro hotel offers a garden, a terrace, and a beautiful swimming pool. Built of wood and stone, this elegant property features rustic and classic style dècor. Book a massage if you'd like!

Amenities:
Coming soon

Hotel Congreso

The Hotel Congreso, located just a ten-minute drive from Santiago de Compostela, offer the best facilities for an unforgettable stay. Enjoy the pool and gardens while you rest here before finishing your walk on the Camino.

Amenities: Coming soon

Hotel Compostela

Hotel Compostela is in Galicia Square, union of both the old city with its historical center and the new city with its hustle and bustle. Close to the hotel you can find the Alameda, a park from which you can enjoy some of the better views of the cathedral. There is a public market nearby where you can see and purchase the best ingredients of Galician cuisine.

Amenities: Coming soon

Please note that all amenities were current when written and are subject to change at any time.

If you're curious about this trip, we would be happy to answer any questions you might have.

Call us ~ 1.800.804.8686