September - October 2017
  • Day28


    October 3, 2017 in Spain ⋅ ☀️ 18 °C

    Well, I made it! I arrived in Santiago yesterday afternoon. The walk to Santiago from Pedrouzo was through beautiful woods with many eucalyptus trees. That was the first part. I also saw the sun come up over the trees, which seemed and felt like a nice beginning to the last day of walking. The rest of the route was nothing special and ofcourse very crowded. I am really a bit appalled at how the French camino is littered and the indication signs are all written or graffitied on. Echt humans!

    When I arrived at the Praza do Obradoiro, which is the plaza in front of the cathedral, there was not really a feeling ....... Some people said that I would feel happy, some said sad, some said proud etc etc... I didn't really feel anything. There was a little bit of ...... Hmmm ... Is this it.... And ....... Ok where is my hotel 😂.

    But all in all I am very happy and proud of myself to have made it all the way here, it took some doorzettingsvermogen sometimes, but I am happy that I pushed through and did the last 100 km too 😁. Now I don't have to come back 😂😂😂😂.

    Santiago is a nice city and I spent the whole day today walking through it little streets and alleys. At the end of the day, I was touristed out and was happy to meet with my dutch friends Hugo and Yolanda for dinner. They arrived this afternoon. Wow, we had a great tapa's dinner. I am really full!!!

    Tomorrow, I might take a tour to Finisterre and Muxia by bus. Let's see of I can wake up 😬
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  • Day26

    This is the end......

    October 1, 2017 in Spain ⋅ ☀️ 20 °C

    My last night in an albergue! Yess! I am in Pedrouzo and walked about 29 KMs today. I wanted to shorten my walk tomorrow into Santiago, so I have more time to enjoy my PRIVATE room..... Did I mention that I booked a private room in Santiago 😂😂😂😂

    Today's walk was interesting! I started my walk alone, leaving the quiet albergue in Boimorte. I didn't meet a single pilgrim the first 10 kms... Just some locals and some cows on the street.
    Then I arrived in Arzua..... OMG! In Arzua, the Camino del Norte meets up with the very popular Camino Frances...... Uffffff ..... I immediately noticed, from there on I wasn't the only pilgrim on the camino anymore. Also, the camino frances has more bars and restaurants along the way and more albergues.... This town I am staying in has 8! Albergues..... Versus the one or two on the Norte.

    I am very happy that I chose for the Norte, I would not have enjoyed the Frances, too many people and no coast. Plus too easy 😂.

    Tomorrow I (and many others) will be walking into Santiago de Compostela. The route is not supposed to be special, actually some call it ugly, so I am not expecting much beauty, except at the end.......... My private room 😂😂😂

    In all seriousness though, tomorrow when I arrive, I will have to go to the pilgrims office to register. Now at the office they ask u if you did the camino out of religious reasons or other reasons. If you say religious, you get the oorkonde ( dont know what it is in english) and if u say other, you don't get the oorkonde.
    This leads many people to lie about their reason, saying they did it for religious reasons.... You all know me..... I think you know my answer to that question tomorrow.....
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  • Day25

    Tinto de verano.....

    September 30, 2017 in Spain ⋅ ⛅ 10 °C

    Last night was a very gezellige night. We are in a small albergue in A Roxica, which holds 12 people max. And ofcourse, in the middle of nowhere, so the hospitalera cooks for us. We were 10 at the table, 4 spanish, 3 dutch, 2 german and 1 french. It got pretty loud, extra bottles of wine were ordered ....... It was fun.....
    Needless to say....... It was also en extra snoring fest ..... I think half of the room was snoring! I will surely not miss that part of the camino!

    Yesterday was a very nice walk, but also quite long, 26 km. I want to do the same today, and will probably separate half way from Hugo and Yolanda, who I have been walking with the past few days. They want to be in Santiago on Tuesday, so a bit slower.

    We will see what the day brings. Happy weekend to all 😘
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  • Day23

    KM 100

    September 28, 2017 in Spain ⋅ ☀️ 25 °C

    Unbelievable but true, Santiago is now only 100 km away! I want to be there on monday, so 4 more days of walking. Yesterday, I walked from Castromaior to Vilalba, which wasn't a very long walk, about 13 km..... Great for my feet!

    But ever since I have turned land inward towards Santiago I have been having mixed feelings. The question, should I continue or not keeps popping in my head......
    I keep thinking, maybe I should use the time I have left in Spain to go to the coast, which I love so much....

    However, now that I have hit the 100 KM mark, I have made up my mind. I will make it to Santiago, and I want to get there on monday.
    That means I will have to walk 25 km the coming 4 days! Gaat helemaal lukken 😂

    I loved today's walk! Again in doubt, I started walking, the trail was really nice and all of a sudden we walked by a house and a doggy was sitting outside... And when I passed she came running to me tail wagging..... So cute, she wanted me to pet her, so ofcourse I did 😁.

    After that another dog, and another...... The first dog just made my day, soooo cute.....
    Hmmm, I think I miss my pets 😂😂😂.

    I am now in Baamonde, in an albergue that has beds for +90 pilgrims. I think we are about 40 and tonight is an ear plug night for sure. I guess, I will have to get used to it, because the last 2 days of my camino will be on the camino frances, which is much busier than the one I am on (+500 pilgrims a day).
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  • Day21


    September 26, 2017 in Spain ⋅ ☀️ 22 °C

    Pffff, wat een day, what a day!
    Actually let's start with yesterday, it was the day that I walked the most km's in one day up to now. A whopping 29 km! I left in the morning from Ribadeo, where I had spent the night in a hostal, because the albergue was just to cold and gross for my taste. I ended up sharing a room with a woman from Madrid, who was ending her camino in Ribadeo.
    If only I knew about the camino when we lived in Madrid! I am sure a lot of our vacays would have been on the camino, with little Luna and Noah 😂.
    Back to the present...... So yesterday was a pretty nice walk. I was having mixed feelings, because from now on the camino is inland so no more sea, but I must say I enjoyed the walk and even had some extra energy to go a bit further than usual. The last few km's I walked with Yolanda and Hugo, so that also made it a bit easier. We ended in Lourenza, which is a small town with a very beautiful cathedral. I had reserved a bed for the 3 of us in a hostal, and we all had a good night's rest.

    Much needed turns out!! Today's stage was about 26 km's but with a lot of uphill climbs! I died a couple of times 😂😂. Anyway, it was also a nice route but a lot of asphalt, so my feet weren't too happy. When we finally came to the town we had to be in, there was a sign with the name of the albergue I had booked, saying 6 km........ Uhm excuse me????
    6 km by car is nothing, but walking it is 1,5 hours..... I had made a mistake in the location of the albergue...... But no harm done! I called the owner and she came and picked us up.

    Wow, this place is beautiful! They even have a pool, the hospitalera is cooking for us, lentejas my favo, and we have our own room, yolanda, hugo and I. O yeah, and we have 6 kms less to walk tomorrow! Only good things! Love it 😃
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  • Day19

    Bienvenido a Galicia, my first time

    September 24, 2017 in Spain ⋅ 🌙 15 °C

    Today my journey toke me from Asturias to Galicia. I have never been here before, but I just love the accent here. The accent is a bit musical. Very nice.

    I am not so happy with the camino of the past 2 days though. A lot of the stages of the past 2 days was on asphalt or next to the busy road, which was murder on my feet.

    Yesterday, I left Otur, the camino was almost all alongside the road, and my feet just couldn't deal with that. So finally, after having a coffee and some local pastry with the three french ladies, Elisabeth, Brigit and Silvie, I went to the bus station to grab the bus for the last 10km to La Caridad. The french ladies walked and I would see them later in the albergue.

    I booked the private albergue in La Caridad for myself, Yolanda and Hugo (the dutch Couple) and the three french ladies. It was called La Xana, which means the girl. They had a beautiful cat, whose name was ...... Xana 😂.

    It was a good albergue, nice and clean, beds were good. I was the first of the group to get there, ofcourse, because I cheated......
    Then came Hugo and Yolanda and an hour or so later, the french ladies. They were very excited because it was going to be their first time ever in an albergue 😝😝😝.

    They will never forget it! They had gin tonics, then ate in an underground dingy restaurant and were fortunate to be able to enjoy a major snoring feast during the whole night! They all woke up with a headache, but still in good spirits. It was their last day today and we said our goodbyes after breakfast.

    I had already decided that I wasn't going to walk the whole stage today. So after breakfast, I ordered a taxi and he brought me to Tapia de Casariego. From here I walked and took the coastal route and ended up seeing many beautiful beaches. At the last beach I also went pootje baden. I hadn't realized it, but after this stage there is no more costa. From now on we turn land inwards and I am not really feeling it!
    Tomorrow I will walk and see how I feel about it.

    Tonight I am staying in a hostal in Ribadeo, with a girl from Madrid as my sleeping mate. It was also her last day today. I met her on the way to the hostal. I had stopped by the albergue first to see if I could stay there, but the place was cold and looked like bed bug heaven. No way I was going to stay there!

    Bueno people, Bon Siman! Let's see what this week brings 😁
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  • Day18

    Carpe Diem!

    September 23, 2017 in Spain ⋅ 🌙 13 °C

    Last night I had a wonderful dinner here in Otur. We were six, a dutch couple, Hugo and Yolanda, who were my sleeping mates in the apartment in Villademoros a day ago, and three french ladies, whom I met on the way to Soto de Luina, during their lunch break. They let me try some of their french cheese, which was actually quite nice, not too old and stinky 😁.

    We had a good time during dinner and dinner was fabulous. We took the menu del dia, which gave the option of ensalada mixta or sopi marisco as a starter. Half of us had the salad and half the soup. All of us were delighted and impressed! Wow it was delicious, and a lot. As a main meal everyone had filete de ternera (yes, even I, the forever aspriring vegetarian) It was a big and thin peace of meat, with the best taste and so mals with home- made patatas fritas, wow, everyone was again delighted. As a postre some of us had home made flan, or arroz con leche, and yes again, super! Then, coffee and then the bill....... 13 euros per person! Wow, you gotta love Spain! Did I mention that wine was also included 😁

    Yesterday's walk was nice, a lot of mud though, which always makes it a challenge...... How do I get through without getting my shoes dirty.... Hey, it keeps you busy 😁.

    On my way, I stopped in the coastal town of Luarca, Beautiful! While walking on the main square, two spanish men I have been meeting on the camino for the past two days, were waving and calling at me and they invited me for a drink. Turns out, one of the men speaks dutch and very well too! He used to have a dutch girlfriend and he works a lot with dutch people. They live in Benidorm! Salvador and Fernando, and according to Fernando they are famous there.... Hmm, I will have to look it up 😁. After my cafe con leche, I said goodbye and walked the last 7 km to Otur, where Yolanda and Hugo were already having a beer at the bar. Last night, I stayed in a hotel room all for myself, just 16 euros! Heerlijk!

    I am a day away of reaching the border of Asturias and Galicia and kind of sad about it.
    I just don't want it all to end, and unfortunately the end is in sight....... Ok..... I still have about 2 weeks to I will keep telling myself to enjoy the moment and make the most of the day! Carpe diem!
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  • Day16


    September 21, 2017 in Spain ⋅ 🌧 16 °C

    Super super tired, but I did want to leave a footprint, because I didn't yesterday,
    I am staying at an apartment in Villademoros.
    I have a room all to myself and sharing the apartement with a very nice dutch couple, Hugo and Yolanda.

    I really enjoyed today's walk. It is so surprising how a day can go so different from what you expect. This morning when I woke up in the albergue in Soto de Luina, I was really not looking forward to walking.
    I guess because I didn't really enjoy my walk yesterday from Muros de Nalon to Soto de Luina. I felt hansha yesterday and not at ease. The route wasn't really spectacular either and I felt kind of lonely.

    So with that in mind and the fact that the weather was going to be blah, I wasn't really looking forward to today's stage.
    Yesterday, the hospitalero of the albergue, came to explain today's stage.

    There was a choice to be made, or go through the mountains, or the coastal route.
    Ofcourse I chose the coastal, and wow, what a beautiful route it turned out to be today!!

    Yes, it did rain half of the stage, but I really enjoyed my walk todAy. Very beAutiful setting, nice views, a lot of ups and downs, not a lot of asphalt, it was good!

    And tonight I sleep alone!!!! I have my own bedroom, no one snoring ( last night was the worst everrrrrr)!
    Sweet dreams people 😘
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  • Day14

    Cheater cheater

    September 19, 2017 in Spain ⋅ ⛅ 18 °C

    I keep cheating on this trip. And today I counted the stages and the days I have left to walk, and I am going to have to cheat if I want to get to Santiago by the 5th of October.

    Yesterday I left beautiful Gijon ...... At 2!!
    What happened, welllll check out at the hostal was at 12, so I had to take advantage of that, and when I was ready to leave, Kristien sent me a msg that she was on her way to Gijon, because her slipper!! (Aka flip flop) had broken!!! Just before starting one of the most difficult stages of this camino! 😂😂😂 This girl is a hoot! She is too funny!
    So I decided to wait for her to say hi and ended up walking through half of the city to find a room for her for the night. She ended up staying at the hotel with the dinosaur 😬.

    So I went on my way en route to Aviles. The road out of Gijon was ugly, but interesting. A lot of heavy industry, like ArcelorMittal. Then a long walk through the woods, only the lonely, and finally for the last 5 km, I took a train. It was already after 6, my foot was hurting and I just wanted to get to the albergue.

    Finally in Aviles.... Another nice town... I just love Spain..... I arrive at the albergue, and there is Lina sitting in the kitchen. She offered me leftover pasta, which was heeeeeeeerlijk! So thankful! Only thing left to do was take a showet and go to bed! Slept hopi bon, af en toe awake and a snore here and there, but all in all a good night.

    This morning, I had already decided that I was going to take a train to the beach, so I would skip the industrial outskirts of Aviles. I had a tortilla with bread at the beach, heerlijk. A lady came to talk to me to ask if I was doing the camino and offered me cafe at her house, but it was all the way on the other side..... I had to be on my way anyway.... I started my camino around 11:30 and arrived here at Morus de Nalon around 4:30. It was a nice camino today, very peaceful, although sometimes when I am walking in the woods all alone, it is kind of scary. But then I think, there is probably always a peregrino/a not far away, walking behind me.... Not such a good thought, when you are with your bare ass in the air because you have to pee for the 100th time ...... 😝😝

    Btw, I walked the whole route on sandals today and it went well! So happy I bought them last year. Ciaoo
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  • Day12


    September 17, 2017 in Spain ⋅ ⛅ 16 °C

    Wow, another beautiful Spanish city, Gijon, capital of Asturias. I would like to tell you that I successfully completed one of the most difficult stages of the Camino del Norte today, but helaas...... I cheated AGAIN 😂😂😂.

    Yesterday, I was kapot when arriving in Villaviciosa from La isla. I had walked more than 20 km, it had rained off and on, my shoes were wet and I had pain in my right foot. So much so that I took off my boots and walked the last 2 km's on slippers. So when I read last night, thAt the etapa Villaviciosa to Gijon was one of the most difficult, I said....... No way Jose!

    But let's go back to Villaviciosa, on my way there I stopped in a little town called Colunga, which was about half an hour from the town where I had stayed the night (La Isla). It was raining off and on again and according to the forecast, it was going to rain the whole day.

    Once in Colunga, I had a choice to make, do I take the bus to Villaviciosa (half hour ride) or do I walk five hours. Eventually I decided to walk, motivated by the fact that Lina, the german girl I had left La isla with had walked on and also I didn't want to quit walking just yet.
    So after having lit a candle in the church of Colunga for Mimi, I went on my way.

    After about an hour, I get a msg from my friend Lina, with her location......... She was in Villaviciosa already!!!! 😳😳😳😳
    Turns out, while walking, another german pilgrim she got to know, who was going to Villaviciosa by taxi! (Speakin of cheating 😝) passed her and stopped, and she decided to hop in the taxi !!!!! Pffffff

    Anyway, I don't regret having walked, it was nice and didn't rain too much. It is just at the end that I really had to take off my boots.

    When I arrived in Villaviciosa, I went to the appartement where my friend Mari-jose and her boyfriend Vasile were staying. They took such good care of me, I wasn't allowed to do anything (no complaints from my side 😁😝😜), I took a warm shower (finally) and they cooked for me! We talked and talked and talked! It was so great seeing them again, such nice people! I stayed with them at the appartment and slept like a baby.

    In the morning, we had breakfast and all of us had to pack. They were also leaving today to Madrid. Our buses both left at 12, so no one was left behind feeling sad.

    I arrived in Gijon at around 1 o'clock and followed a german pilgrim I met the day before, who was also on the bus, to the hotel he was staying at to see if there were still rooms available........ I am happy to say that tonight I am sleeping al alone, i have my own bathroom, heeeeeeeeeeerlijk 😂😂😂. Ofcourse, first things first, I took a siesta, after that I washed my clothes and then I went to enjoy this beautiful city. Echt de moeite waard!
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