thought to post my stages of viejo, to help people
organize their camino a little better. my guide
purposefully avoids this, to give as much freedom
of planning as possible, but I know that sometimes
some people prefer a bit less choice (like the popular
stages on frances). and, let's face it, I need a
good dose of camino memories!
pamplona - villanueva de arakil, 31km via irurtzun
fairly long day on sometimes difficult former gr21
(waymarks removed). requires some orientation skills.
casa rural irigoen with superb treatment, atmosphere,
and food. HP for 27E. two houses with blasones with
scallops in the village.
villanueva de arakil - monasterio zamartze, 8km
unplanned stay, excavations in monasterio (roman
waystation and medieval graves, some with scallops),
and a car visit to santuario de aralar. but monasterio
zamartze doesn't usually accommodate people - perhaps
that might change in the future? otherwise, I would
recommend going as far as alsasua (29km).
monasterio zamartze - puerto de lizarraga, 23km
majestic day almost literally straight up from huarte
arakil to beriain (1000m climb in less then 6km)
with a superb view all around, fog permitting, then
a solitary and somewhat longish descent to puerto
lizarraga. the only water in huarte arakil! hostal
in puerto lizarraga 50E per room.
puerto de lizarraga - alsasua, 20km
walk on panoramic ridge then a descent through beautiful
forest to alsasua. in albergue juvenil ring the
right bell. 17E.
alsasua - salvatierra, 24km
the plain of vitoria-gasteiz, past a stunning dolmen.
pension hose mari with special pilgrim price, 15E.
now there should also be pilgrim albergue. superb
tourist info office.
salvatierra - vitoria-gasteiz, 28km
long day if you want to see at least a few must-sees
in vitoria (catedral, casco antiguo, museo naipes,
many churches). pension la paz, special price 25E.
but there is now albergue in the centre.
vitoria-gasteiz - puebla de arganzon, 22km
and down portillo san miguel. albergue with microwave.
puebla de arganzon - miranda de ebro, 19km
care after estavillo to go right (for burgos, not
santo domingo de la calzada), then after arminon
there are two options, left newer and passing a
dolmen, right older and the last kms before miranda
not waymarked anymore. both more or less the same
in length. albegue juvenil with microwave. BB 11.50E.
miranda de ebro - banos de sobron, 24km
gr 99 ruta del ebro. the first canyon. hostal durtzi,
banos de sobron - quintana martin galindez, 21km
opted for the road, gr 99 goes up and down the mountains.
hostal valle tobalina, 30E. there is now albergue,
too, a bit out of town.
quintana martin galindez - trespaderne, 23km
bridge, town, castle, panorama of frias, recommended
for a rest day. in trespaderne there is only hostal
jose luiz, 28E.
trespaderne - quintana de valdevieso, 24.5km
magical gorges, a fantastic romanesque church, and
friendly people. be persistent for a dorm bed in
albergue arte y natura, at first they tried to sell
me the most expensive double. 18E.
quintana de valdevieso - pesquera de ebro, 23.5km
superb example of roman/medieval/old raised road,
a curious dolmen with a round chambre and a fine
view of canon del ebro. casa rural arco, 42E.
pesquera de ebro - orbaneja del castillo, 25km
canon del ebro, very picturesque orbaneja, superb
panoramas. casa rural abuelo very friendly and with
kitchen, but buy supplies in pesquera. 25E.
orbaneja del castillo - polientes, 18.5km
canon del ebro, another fine romanesque church.
friendly pension sanpatiel came with free laundry
done by the lady of the house, 30E.
polientes - villanueva de la nia, 16km
are expensive options further on if this is too
short. another fine church. good food in posada
cazador, the only in the village, 24E.
villanueva de la nia - aguilar de campoo, 27.5km
ebro and gr 99, not waymarked. after the climb out
of the valley vast plains. hotel villa de aguilar
in centre, 35E. hostal cortez may be cheaper if
they answer the phone.
aguilar de campoo - cervera de pisuerga, 27.5km
camino olivdado and yellow arrows. but lost them
after quintanilla de corvio, should keep more to
the left. in cervera very friendly tourist office.
albergue is further 1.5km north and was full. hostal
pineda, 20E (ask for low price).
cervera de pisuerga - castrejon de la pena, 21km
a detour to valle de tosante and an almost roundabout
route via traspena de la pena because I wanted to
see the cruceiro and the church (which was open!).
got a special offer in casa rural uncar, 25E.
castrejon de la pena - guardo, 23.5km
or less joining the main road. albergue is 1.2km
further on the route west of centre, call ahead.
in centre pension garmar not too recommended. lodged
by a super friendly couple.
guardo - punete almuhey, 15km
the main road an ok waymarked stretch through woods.
friendly casa rural muria, 25E.
puente almuhey - cistierna, 25km
goes north to santuario velilla, but I opted for
the main road because I had a sick afternoon and
night. for albergue key go to ayuntamiento or call
a phone number posted on the door.
cistierna - bonar, 23.5km
short 'detour' south with ruta vadiniense, but the
split clearly waymarked. then the route follows
a minor road which I eluded by a mountain bike route.
in bonar also albergue. hostal ines, 20E.
bonar - la robla, 31km
long day with lots of main road walking. the second
part which is off the road might be blocked because
of the new railway construction. for albergue call
in advance, or stop by the tourist office (open
till 14h), it's 500m north of the route. has kitchen.
la robla - pandorado, 32km
long day with lots of main road walking. construction
of the new industrial buildings at magdalena obliges
you to stay on the main road. after leaving the
road after riello you need sharp eyes to spot the
very few arrows on the first 500m of the climb.
call ahead to casa rural resthy to arrange for a
two-night stay and transportation back and to fasgar.
it has a kitchen. 60E.
pandorado - fasgar (pandorado), 26km
tracks, still lots of side road. practically no
supplies, only two bars on the route, but a few
fountains. again casa rural resthy in pandorado,
60E + 30E for the transport.
fasgar - iguena, 20km
beautiful day up to campo de santiago de martin
moro then down, here a bit stony and precarious,
to iguena. enough springs. hostal here closed! call
ahead for casa rural begona, with kitchen. 30E.
iguena - bembibre, 27.5km
quintana de fuseros and its fountain a long and
lonely stretch to labaniego where all fountains
were dry but there were poeple to ask for water.
after it watch out for an arrow where you have to
descend right to go to losada. I went left and ended
in bembibre. hostal carmen, 25E.
bembibre - ponferrada, 18km
followed the main road because I didn't know there
is a much more beautiful path from san miguel de
duenas on. albergue in ponferrada has fountain,
showers and wcs in the courtyard open all day.