Trip Overview

Travel to Spain for a nine-day hiking trip in September 2020 on the Camino Sanabrés 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. As you travel the Sanabrés Route, also known as the Mozárabe Route, you’ll cover 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.

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 four-star 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. Cross the 13th century stone Sobreira Bridge to reach Oseira Monastery. Visit Dozon, a truly charming farming village where you can indulge your trail-tested body with a complimentary one-and-a-half-hour spa circuit, 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 for an overnight in a renovated 14th century home.

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
  • 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
  • Natural Hot Springs
  • 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

Friday, September 18, 2020 – Arrive in Madrid
You will be met at the Madrid airport and transferred to your hotel, near the Plaza Mayor. If you’d like to arrive before the trip starts, please let us know and we can arrange to extend your hotel stay. We recommend coming a few days early!

If time allows this afternoon, enjoy a short guided tour of Madrid.

Enjoy a lively welcome dinner, tapas style, 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: TBD

 

Day 2

Saturday, September 19, 2020 – Madrid to Ourense
Have an early breakfast before setting off for Ourense, which is a 5.5 hour drive. You’ll drive across the Meseta, a vast plateau in the heart of peninsular Spain. After driving through farmlands for about four hours, stop at Puebla de Sanabria, a typical fortified town between Spain and Portugal. This town is on a plateau overlooking the valley as well as the Cabrera and Segundera mountains, which are snow-capped most of the year. This strategic point, which connects Catile and Galicia, has been the object of fierce disputes between the two regions and Portugal. Have a coffee break and a small snack before finishing your drive to Ourense.

You’ll arrive in Ourense around 2:30pm – the perfect Galician lunch time, so 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! The restaurant is a two minute walk from your hotel.
Breakfast, Dinner

Overnight: Hotel Francisco II

 

Day 3

Sunday, September 20, 2020 – Ourense to Cea
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.
Breakfast, Dinner

Overnight: Eurostars Monumento Monasterio de San Clodio

Distance: 11 miles

Day 4

Monday, September 21, 2020 – Ourense to Dozon
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.
Breakfast, Dinner

Overnight: Pazo de Bendoiro Hotel

Distance: 12 miles

Day 5

Tuesday, September 22, 2020 – Dozon to A Laxe
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.

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!
Breakfast, Dinner

Overnight: Casa Grande de Fuentemayor

Distance: 9.5 miles

Day 6

Wednesday, September 23, 2020 – A Laxe to Bandeira
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, each of you will have the chance to enjoy a 30 minute massage and a one hour spa circuit including baths, saunas, pools, and showers. Flip flops and bathing caps are required.

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

Overnight: Hotel Via Argentum

Distance: 11 miles

Day 7

Thursday, September 24, 2020 – Bandeira to Lestedo
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.
Breakfast, Dinner

Overnight: Gran Hotel Los Abetos

Distance: 12.5 miles

Day 8

Friday, September 25, 2020 – Lestedo to Santiago de Compostela
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!

Check into your hotel, and then meet again late this afternoon to receive your Compostela, or Certificate of Achievement of the Camino de Santiago. Learn about the history of Saint James before attending the Pilgrim Mass this evening.

After the Pilgrim Mass, have a celebratory dinner with your new AdventureWomen friends. Toast your incredible achievement and the end of a spectacular adventure. A wise pilgrim once said that “the real Camino starts where the Camino de Santiago finishes but I will not be afraid because the Camino will always be there for me.” We hope the Camino has helped you find what you were looking for, or that you have found something unexpected along the way!
Breakfast, Dinner

Overnight: Hotel Rua Villar

Day 9

Saturday, September 26, 2020 – Depart Spain
Say goodbye to your new AdventureWomen friends as you transfer to the airport for your flights home.
Breakfast

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/Departure Information

Arrive: Arrive in Madrid, Spain (MAD) on September 18, 2020 before 12:00pm.

Depart: Depart Santiago de Compostela, Spain (SCQ) on September 26, 2020.

We are happy to help you make your flight and travel arrangements. Please contact us at:

(800) 804-8686 or (617) 544-9393
email: info@adventurewomen.com

 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

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 at: https://fitfortrips.com/partners/adventure-women/

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 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 page about Spain.

Money

The currency of Spain is the Euro. Visa/MasterCard are generally accepted for purchases over €15. For snacks and lunches on the Camino, you should budget €15-20/day. For meals in Madrid and on the last day in Santiago, you should budget €50/day.

Suggested Gratuities: All of your guides, drivers, hotel, and restaurant staff are well-paid and no gratuity is required on this trip but if you feel the person has gone the extra mile a small tip is always appreciated.

  • Main guide: €5 to €10 per person per day
  • Drivers: €5 to €10 per person per day

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) on or before June 20, 2020. A maximum of $1,500 per person can be put on a credit card, which includes your deposit.

 

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 based on double occupancy
  • Meals as noted in the itinerary
  • All transportation throughout the trip
  • Luggage transfers from hotel to hotel
  • All activities as listed in the itinerary
  • English-speaking guide throughout the trip
  • Gratuities for hotel and restaurant staff
  • One AdventureWomen Ambassador

Not Included

  • Round-trip airfare
  • Meals not specified in itinerary
  • Alcoholic beverages, unless otherwise specified
  • Items of a personal nature
  • Gratuities for guide(s) and driver

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

TBD
You will stay in a comfortable hotel near the Plaza Mayor.

Hotel Francisco II
Francisco II is located in a quiet area of central Ourense, just a short walk from the city’s famous thermal baths and the Old Town. Ourense Cathedral is a five minute walk from the Francisco II; this is the perfect place to begin your Camino walk.

Eurostars Monumento Monasterio de San Clodio
The Eurostars Monumento Monasterio de San Clodio Hotel & Spa is a 12th century Cistercian monastery that has been refurbished to be a comfortable hotel. Its walls are steeped in history. This was the home of Cistercian monks, later of Benedictine friars. Nowadays, it throws open its doors so that you can revel in the peace and quiet of its cloisters, its cells, and the marvelous surroundings.

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!

Casa Grande de Fuentemayor
This charming rural farmhouse was built in 1708 by the priest Don Jose de Cobas. It has been fully restored by the 7th generation owners using traditional materials of granite, oak, and chestnut, and is surrounded by beautiful gardens.

Hotel Via Argentum
The rooms at Hotel Via Argentum offer excellent views of the surrounding countryside. The hotel's spa offers a variety of treatments, including wraps, massages, and facials. The thermal circuit features an active pool, dry sauna, steam bath, and several types of showers, perfect for weary feet and legs

Gran Hotel Los Abetos
The Gran Hotel Los Abetos is set in the San Lazaro neighborhood, offering impressive views of Santiago de Compostela. It has an outdoor swimming pool during summer as well as 2 saunas and a gym. The hotel’s restaurant offers a good range of regional dishes, and a well-stocked wine cellar.

Hotel Rua Villar
Hotel Rua Villar is located in the historic center of Santiago de Compostela, just a stone's throw from the cathedral. This restored 18th century house maintains original features such as the wooden beams and impressive central skylight. It also exhibits many great paintings by celebrated artists such as Miró and Tàpies.

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 to Bring

As you get ready to pack for your adventure, have a look at The AdventureWomen Store - we have picked out our favorite travel clothes and outdoor gear to help make packing easy for you. You can also see our recommendations for this trip on the AdventureWomen Pinterest page.

The weather mid-September should be sunny and pleasantly warm during the day and cool at night. The temperature can be fairly unpredictable, with cool and rainy weather one week and temperatures in the 90s the next week. The average daytime high is 72°F, with an average low of 53°F overnight. Because Galicia is at the most western point in Continental Europe and on the edge of its time zone, you will enjoy daylight about two hours later than the rest of Europe. Expect daylight to last until about 8:30pm - part of the reason dinners are so late!

You are allowed one checked bag with a maximum weight of 55 pounds and you should carry a day pack. The best clothing for the Camino is made of wicking materials which dry quickly, such as synthetic materials or merino wool. Avoid cotton as it takes much longer to dry and does not wick sweat away from the body.

Clothing and Gear:

  • 1 small suitcase/duffel bag
  • 1 day pack with rain cover
  • 1-1.5 liter water bladder or two water bottles
  • Medium-weight, waterproof hiking boots (make sure they are broken in!)
  • 4-5 pairs wool hiking socks
  • 2-3 short sleeve shirts (quick dry recommended)
  • 1-2 long sleeve shirts (quick dry recommended)
  • 1 medium weight fleece sweater/ jacket for cool evenings
  • 1-2 pairs of pants
  • 1 pair of shorts
  • 1-2 sets of nicer clothes for dinner
  • 1 bathing suit
  • 1 GoreTex, waterproof rain jacket
  • 1 pair GoreTex, waterproof rain pants
  • Hat for sun protection
  • 5-7 pairs underwear (quick dry recommended)
  • Sleepwear
  • Trekking poles (must be in checked baggage on flights, so be sure they collapse and fit into your luggage)

AdventureWomen Essentials:

  • Travel documents (passport, airline tickets, money)
  • 2-3 spare passport photos (in case of lost passport)
  • Write down/print out travel insurance number
  • Locks for your suitcase/duffel bag
  • Travel alarm clock with spare batteries
  • Headlamp or small flashlight with spare batteries
  • Binoculars (optional; 8x40/42 models are excellent choices; center focus models are easiest)
  • Digital camera, memory cards, battery charger
  • Power adapters/power bank
  • Sunglasses, case, and strap
  • Spare glasses, contact lens- es, cleaner, saline,
  • Money belt or neck pouch
  • Sunscreen and lip balm with SPF
  • Mosquito repellent
  • Hand wipes/hand sanitizer
  • Toothbrush/toothpaste
  • Soap, shampoo, and conditioner
  • Small packet of tissues
  • Tampons and panty liners (avoid plastic applicators)
  • Earplugs: We recommend Mack’s Pillow Soft White Moldable Silicone Snore Proof Available at most drugstores or at www. earplugstore.com

Personal First Aid Kit:

  • Prescription medicine you usually take (in original containers)
  • Personal epi pen (if you need one, don’t forget to pack it!)
  • Bandages, Gauze, Ace bandage, blister prevention
  • Antiseptic wipes/spray
  • Antibiotic ointment
  • Cotton-tipped applicators
  • Oral rehydration tablets/ packets
  • Antidiarrheal medication
  • Mild laxative
  • Antacid
  • Cold remedies
  • Ibuprofen/acetaminophen
  • Eye drops
  • Tweezers, scissors (travel size), safety pins

If you prefer to buy a complete kit, we recommend the Smart Travel first aid kit.

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

Call us ~ 1.800.804.8686