Castille and León

Here you’ll find travel reports about Castille and León. Discover travel destinations in Spain of travelers writing a travel blog on FindPenguins.

137 travelers at this place:

  • Day17

    The Camino de Santiago. I read about it, I watched videos about it but nowhere in my research let me know how hard it is to do. Your feet hurt all of the time. But through the hurt, things are happening physically that are really good. First, I think that I have lost 15 lbs and a pant size already. Cardiovascular wise? I can actually make it up a long hill now without huffing and puffing and feeling like I want to die. I am drinking between 3 & 4 liters of water each day. I have made some adjustments which makes things stuffing my IPad..which is my camera...under my chest strap for easy access, putting my fanny pack on my side instead of my front so it doesn’t impede my stride....little things like this help. Another story from the Camino: I met a guy volunteering at the Albergue a couple of towns ago...he has hiked the Camino 23 times. His dad...hiked the Camino 30 times starting in 1957. I just want to make it through it once...that’s hard enough! It’s interesting when it comes to the locals response to you as you walk through their towns. Some people are really indifferent and show no signs of even noticing you. Others however, give you a big smile and say: Hola! Buen Camino! The Camino is a big deal to a lot of Spanish seems and they respect you for making the trek. I have met a fair amount of Spanish people that are looks very good on a resume here apparently. Maybe some are doing it for that reason, maybe for deeper meaning...not really sure. It’s funny though...I have walked through bad neighborhoods, past gang type people but it’s like an unwritten rule here...don’t mess with a pilgrim and they leave you be. I find myself tonight in a small town, I am in a little pensione which compares to a small b&b in Maine. A nice room, shared bathroom and just overall, quaint and classy. I face an uphill climb of 5.6km up over a mountain in the morning. I stopped here because I just couldn’t face that hill at 2pm and already tired and sore. So I head out in the morning, packing the meal I cooked tonight...a full water bottle and hopes that I make it up and over before it gets to hot. Thank you for checking in as usual! I hope this finds everyone well!Read more

  • Day24

    Leon to Ponferrada

    May 13 in Spain

    Hello from Ponferrada, Spain. First off, Happy Mother’s Day to my Mom...thank you for all of your support! I took it easy today and got myself to Ponferrada. I stayed in a small hotel last night so, unlike an albergue, check out time was not until noon. That enabled me to sleep in and take my time this morning. I also got my flight booked to come home this morning. I have an 8:30 am flight on Friday the 25th out of Porto, Portugal landing in Boston at 1:20 pm. An 11 hour flight but I lose 6 hours with the time difference. I will take the train or bus to Portland and Connor is picking me up there. I met up with two older gentlemen from London last night in Leon. They had just arrived and begin walking to Santiago today. They are taking the easier method of walking the Camino....they walk until they are tired and call someone from their booking agency to drive them to the next town. We met up at a cafe and when they learned I had been walking for almost three weeks, they wanted to here some of my stories. As it turned out, we had dinner together and had a great political discussion among other topics. The really great part?...they bought the wine!...which was the really good stuff! I arrived at the bus depot in Ponferrada at around 3pm. I had a 2mile or so walk to find the Camino path and a place to stay around 4:30. I ended up in a small albergue. I had dinner tonight with an engineer from Frankfort, Germany and a physician from Barcelona, Spain. Again, great discussion and food. Tomorrow, I am on the trail again...15 miles to the next town. I will enter the province of Galicia in the next couple of days. Galacia is very mountainous and the scenery is stunning I have been told so the photos from here on in to Santiago should be great. Galacia also has a huge Celtic influence so that should be interesting to see. It is also known for its seafood...especially octopus and I will be trying that out for sure. It is also very mountainous, so I will be grinding up and down huge hills once again. That’s it from here...I hope this finds everyone well!Read more

  • Day23

    Castrojeriz to Leon

    May 12 in Spain

    Hey, from the city of Leon, Spain. So, today, reality took over. I woke up this morning in a small town on the meseta in central Spain. I knew as I have known for days that as much as I walked, I would not have enough days to get to Santiago. My choices were to ask for two more weeks off so I would have the time to complete this trip or to travel forward by bus or train. I decided that I cannot ask my coworkers to cover me for an additional two weeks and to be honest, I have no desire to be out here for an additional two weeks anyway. So, instead of slogging through the rain on the meseta with no realistic goal in sight, I decided to catch a bus to Leon. I have a difficult time with this as I set out to complete the whole 500 miles but will fall short of that goal. But, at the same time, I do realize that I set very difficult goals for myself. I thought I could bang out the 16 miles a day pace without rest days and complete this in 32 days. To the contrary, I have discovered that unless you are a marathoner, young and in shape, that is not a realistic goal. My son could do it in that time frame being 19 and in shape from a lacrosse season, but not I. Soooo...I will start again on the trail from Ponferrada on Monday morning. That is 128 miles from Santiago. I have been averaging 12 miles per day for the past 2 1/2 weeks. I will need to average 15 miles per day to get to Santiago, give myself time to get to Portugal and get my ass on a plane back home on the 25th of this month. But, at least this is an obtainable goal. I will settle for the 328 miles walking...short of my goal...but okay in my mind. I have already accomplished what I set out to do when I started this. Also, there are many ways to do this trek. Many people send there pack forward by courier....I have chosen to grind it out with my pack on my back the whole I will continue to do till the end. Not many photos today as it was more a travel day and a logistical planning day for me. Goodnight from Leon.Read more

  • Day25

    Good morning from some small village west of Villa Franca del Bierzo where I woke up this morning. I left Ponferrada yesterday morning around 7am and arrived in Villa Franca del Bierzo at around 3pm. The walk was through a few small towns and I am back into vineyards once again. I stayed in a new albergue last night. I was referred to this place by another albergue who was nearly full. The lady who owns it is struggling to make it even though it is a nice place. It was nearly empty except for 3 other people. She doesn’t have a cafe/bar and her WiFi is terrible so it turns a lot of people away. But, she was a very nice lady in her late 60’s I would guess. She even did my laundry for me...washed/dried and folded. And the fact that there were only 3 other people in the large bunk room, I slept very well which is first for an albergue for me. Other than all that, I am just knocking out the miles to Santiago. I hope everyone is well!Read more

  • Day20

    Burgos to Tardajos

    May 9 in Spain

    Greetings from the small town of Tardajos....just west of Burgos on the Meseta. The Meseta is known as the high plateau in central Spain. Whatever it is or whatever it is called, it is a week of no shade and high temps. I left Burgos this morning and headed west. It took some time to get out of the city but one point of interest to me...I came to this place in the road and recognized it immediately when I saw it which is odd because I have never been here before but it was a spot where a big scene in the movie “The Way” was filmed. As I said, I landed in this small town of Tardajos...population 950. I am not sure where everyone is because I have only seen about 10 locals. A lot of the town is boarded up as are a lot of these small Spanish towns. I checked into a pretty modern albergue for $13 for the night complete with a nice cafe/bar and laundry facilities. Some albergues have a washer and dryer but they want around $10 to use them. They also offer hand washing sinks and clothes drying racks for free, which is the option I chose as most people do here. I am sharing a room tonight with 2 German guys, two sisters from Arizona and a young girl from Australia. A very nice bunch as most people are that are walking. I had the “pilgrim meal tonight which is a 3 course meal with wine...for a decent price and the portion size is always very good as well. The hard part about albergues is that you need to be out by 8am...rain or shine. The price you pay for cheap lodging I suppose. That’s it for now, off to sleep in a few. I hope everyone is well! Thank you for checking in!Read more

  • Day18

    Hello from Ages, Spain...a small town, population 65 that is just east of the large city of Burgos. I left my very comfortable pensione this morning around 8am and after a long walk through a forest, I arrived in Ages at around 2:30. There were no hotels with inexpensive rooms..only albergues, which are getting tiresome because of the whole bunk room situation. So...I decided to haul the tent out of the bag and give that a try. I went to the local church...the 16th century Iglesia de Santa Eulalia....complete with a very large stork nest at the top. There was an elder Spanish woman who was apparently the overseer of the church and after explaining, mostly with sign language, that I wished to set my tent up in the courtyard, she was very happy to let me do so. This is the way that the Camino was done in the old days before the whole albergue infrastructure was in place....people stayed in church courtyards, hay lofts etc. As I write this, I am getting some dinner at a local cafe and using their WiFi. That is about it for now....tomorrow, I walk into Burgos. Take care all and thank you for checking in!Read more

  • Day19

    Ages to Burgos

    May 8 in Spain

    Good morning to everyone. I packed up my tent and left Ages at around 7:30 am in the morning. I walked a couple of miles and came across a place for breakfast. After a coffe and an apple pastry, I was on my way again. The walk to Burgos took me up over a mountain, which was quite steep I might add, and the path ran along a Spanish military base. Once at the top, I could see Burgos...still a 4 hour walk off in the distance. I have officially walked 180 miles of the Camino but with the added daily walking within the towns to find lodging, walking to find food....I beilive I am actually approaching 200 Miles. I had a nice hotel in Burgos...very inexpensive by American standards...with breakfast, my own room and shower. You really start to appreciate all these things when you can find them. Living and sharing facilities in an albergue gets old. I went to the huge church in Burgos....I have never seen a church so vast in my don’t do it justice. It took me 15-20 minutes just to walk around the structure on the outside. It was built from 1221-1260 I think. I can’t believe that building so huge and so ornate would be possible with the tools and means of that time period. But huge it is. That’s it for now...I hope this finds everyone well!Read more

  • Day11

    Ninth stop - Hontanas

    May 9 in Spain

    Burgos -> 31km -> Hontanas
    Entered the Meseta region of Spain, which is known for it's plains and long roads. Beautiful walk, although seemed never ending at one point 😂 Hontanas is a lovely discovery, not noticeable until the very last moment 👌🏻

  • Day21

    Tardajos to Hontanas

    May 10 in Spain

    Hello everyone from Castrojeriz, Spain. I was not able to post yesterday due to the WiFi situation in Hontanas. Apparently there was no internet working in the town. When I say in the town, I mean the two or three albergues that cater to pilgrim travelers because other than that, there were no signs of life. The walk through the meseta was cold and blustery but fortunately, it was a east to west wind so it was at my back all day. I arrived in Hotanas at around 3 pm and there were not many beds available so I grabbed up one. Like I have said, albergues are not my favorite but it was threatening rain and there was no shelter for my tent. I ended up in a room with a guy from Georgia, one from Boston and a guy from Germany. It was a decent night all in all. They served a pilgrim meal at one big table for all of the travelers which consisted of chicken paella, salad, dessert and all the red wine anyone could ever want. The chicken paella was delicious which they served in a huge wok shaped pan on the table. One unique thing about Hotanas is that you approach it for miles and can’t see it until you are on top of it and you start down into this little valley. That’s all I’ve got for now, I hope this finds everyone well and thank you as usual for checking in!Read more

  • Day26

    Hello from Laguna de Castille...a small town up in the Galician mountains. I arrived last night into Las Herrerias, a small town of 30. I found a small pensione with a private room for a little more than an albergue so I grabbed it up. The walk was pretty uneventful and not real scenic from Villafranca del Bierzo to Las Herrerias. The hike followed a stream and a highway most of the day. Today is a very scenic day through the mountains and I will send out an update tonight if I have decent WiFi. Take care and thank you for checking in!Read more

You might also know this place by the following names:

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