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    • Day12

      Azqueta to Los Arcos

      September 29 in Spain ⋅ ☁️ 11 °C

      We had a great breakfast at La Perla Negra ( never saw Jack Sparrow), granola, yogurt, fresh fruit, cheese, plus the usual toast and jam. Plus big coffee mugs, instead of tiny espresso cups. And Helena encouraged us to put apples and bananas in our pockets.

      Weather is wet, but not bad. Heavy mist early this morning . Followed by occasional light drizzle, but no heavy rain!

      Another shorter day of walking, little more than 14 km to Los Arcos. Just one village other village, a 2km climb to Villamayor de Montjardin at the base of the big hill. There was a Fronton there!

      Then a 12 km walk through an isolated valley with hay fields, vineyards, olive groves, and asparagus fields. There were signs of wild fires from August here, about 1.5 miles of hillside were black trees with no undergrowth!

      We made it to Los Arcos for lunchtime!
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    • Day11

      More Old Camino to Azqueta

      September 28 in Spain ⋅ ☁️ 17 °C

      After our stop at the Blacksmith shop, we hiked back up to the Old Camino and hiked 3 or 4 kilometers until the turnoff from Azqueta, our stop for today.

      It is a very tiny town, only one Alberque, and it is the only place in town that serves dinner too. We had a quick lunch at the bar/cafe, then check-in at La Perla Negra ( no sign of Captain Jack Sparrow yet.

      The last two days we have been steady approaching a pyramid shaped hill. As we got closer, we has it has a castle on top and we began to fear our village was up there. Fortunately, we are at the bottom of the big hill.
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      Beautiful. I have been meaning to ask -- did you contract with someone to transport your larger packs from place to place for the entire (or much of) the trip?

    • Day10

      Bar Lara

      September 7 in Spain ⋅ ⛅ 26 °C

      Puente La Reina- Villatuerta
      We left PLR the earliest yet 7am after a breakfast and a wonderful dinner the night before - separate bedroom with a bunk bed - no ladder - just a little lower then most.
      18 kms to V. nice walk a little over 5 hrs. What a nice and friendly place here. The hospitalier told use to go for lunch at the Bar Lara and we brought extra food home for maybe dinner and breakfast.
      Think we did several crossings over mountain passes today.
      Someone setup a help yourself water and homemade snacks along the way- Camino Experience- was wonderful as the water was cold.
      We came across more almond, olive, and fig trees.
      Some snails eating the weeds…
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      Sounds like a great day. Love the scenery and the wonderful stories.


      these are beautiful pictures. wondered if there are fires nearby or what is the air quality. enjoying it all


      There are fires quite away in eastern Spain. This area was burnt about two months ago. But this is early morning so maybe some haze….


      we are having glorious weather, leaves only starting to change, few people at the park now, great for e biking



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    • Day11

      On the Old Camino

      September 28 in Spain ⋅ ⛅ 14 °C

      Our Albegue host Jordi encouraged us to walk the Old Camino, through the hills above the valley. The route changed in the 1200,'s, when the Monastery on the hill complained to the King of Navette, too many Pilgrims we're walking to Santiago. The route was changed to the valley.

      This morning we hiked through the hill, past a boat load of sheep and great views.

      We took a short detour, half mile, Down to the valley route, tho visit the Irache Wine Fountain.

      It is 5 O'clock some where!

      Back up to the Old Camino, then on to our next stop. A short day today, only about 12 km I think, with the detour.
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      Jim, you really should not scare the poor sheep. 🤣


      Ok was reminded of the old Folk Singer/Comedian Bruce Utah Phillips, who described Utah as, "The place where men are men, and the sheep are scared!"


      Mint jelly



    • Sep18

      Puente la Reina to Villatuerta

      September 18 in Spain ⋅ ⛅ 24 °C

      We left the Apostol Albergue about 8 am after breakfast.

      Shorter day of about 17km with a few stops whenever we felt like it.

      Weather started quite cool but was sunny and warm soon enough. We walked through lots of fallow fields and also vineyards and olive groves.

      Coffee con leche in Maneru; a foot cooling boots-off stop in a nice olive grove with views to Cirauqui. The latter is a very picturesque walled city built on a hill.

      Stopped there for a cold drink and bumped into various pilgrims we’d met earlier.

      Also spoke to some Brazilian coffee farmers from Poços de Caldas in Minas Gerais, the scene of a rather dramatic TGA incident of mine (K).

      Next stop was where the Camino crosses the river Salado. The water looked tempting so we dipped our feet in the frigid water. It apparently flows out of the bottom of a dam further up the hill.

      Feet refreshed for the 2nd time, and John’s blister re-dressed, we hoofed it on into Lorca for lunch.

      But not before stopping at the free-for-pilgrims snack table setup somewhere before Lorca. Chilled water and toast soaked in olive oil. Good fuel.

      Then a few hot sunwashed kms into Villatuerta. We’re in a “casa rural” called the “643KM”. That’s the remaining distance to Santiago. Almost there! Very nice room.
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      Did you speak Portuguese with the Brazilians?

      Kevin Esler

      Sim, bastante. I’m finding my Portugnol handy occasionally too.

    • Sep19

      Rest day in Villatuerta & Estella

      September 19 in Spain ⋅ ⛅ 13 °C

      We decided not to walk today and checked in for a second night in our casa rural in Villatuerta where we both had a great night’s sleep.

      We took a taxi up the track about 5k to Estella, a beautiful medieval city of 14000 people.

      Breakfast and then a stroll around the older parts of town. Saw the magnificent church of San Pedro and its adjacent cloister.

      Then we walked the Calle Mayor, the main street dating back to medieval times, very narrow and lined with 5-6 storey buildings with shops on the ground floor. Coffee and cake in one of them.

      Bought a better SIM (K), a few supplies for blister wound amelioration, and snacks for a planned early start tomorrow. Best to stop walking by 2pm. There is a very good reason the idea of “siesta” developed.

      Did a leisurely loop through the beautifully shaded park near the river, then found a sandwich for lunch and booked the next two nights’ lodging. A taxi back to Villatuerta after attempting a bus ride. Alas Google Maps lied about the bus schedule. No big deal.

      Tomorrow is a longish haul to Los Arcos so we plan to begin at 6am.

      Feeling better after a rest day.

      No restaurants open here in Villatuerta, it being Monday, so we will buy ingredients and throw something together in the kitchen.
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      Meanwhile … the rest of the world watched others doing a special ‘slow march’ … what an incredible event …

      Hi John, thanks for the link we are enjoying your commentary and photos. Cheers Roger and Penny Phillips [Roger]


      I like the shadow pictures you take !

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    • Day10

      Puerta la Reina to Villatuerta

      September 27 in Spain ⋅ ☁️ 16 °C

      I'm going to do this post backwards from where we are now to where we started this morning. We are in the coolest albergue tonight. Abergues are lodging that have large dorm-style rooms and also a few private rooms, often with shared bathrooms & showers. Kitchen and spaces to relax with others are also common.

      Albergues are fairly inexpensive & usually very basic. This albargue is lovely. Recently renovated & decorated very creatively. The owners shared their story with us. All of the furniture was left behind or purchased at used furniture places. Just feels welcoming, homey & comfortable after a tiring day.

      We met up with Jim & Sandy after lunch they walked with us our last 3 miles.

      Found out the berries we've been seeing along the road are actually the berries that Sambuca is made from. Also saw a huge field of asparagus!

      The soil through much of today's walk is very red and clay-like. There are lots of grapes going here. We're not into Rioja country yet though. Just as aside, the local wines are very good in this Navarre region. The are light & the alcohol content is much less than what we have when we buy red wines at home.

      Met Annabell formerly after we passed each other for the hundredth time over the past 3 days.

      We left before the sun was fully up at 8am this morning. Albergues tend to want their pilgrims out early so they can clean & prepare for the next wave of pilgrims that will be spending the night.
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      lovely area and lodgings


      I love this place!


      what a great albergue...... that is a wonderful place to rest


      Cheers Jim, or "Prost" we say in Austria

    • Day6


      April 28 in Spain ⋅ 🌧 10 °C

      Trotz Regen und Fuß - aua, vier Stunden Schlaf......... Die Reise - meine Reise muss weitergehen.

      Ich mach mich auf den Weg Richtung Ende des Ankommens.

      So ging es im Regen los, heute mal alleine.

      War verwundert dass ich so viel Energie hatte und war ziemlich zügig unterwegs und den ganzen Tag eigentlich mit Musik auf den Ohren.

      Coole Tour und am Ende waren es heute wieder 24 km mit vielen Eindrücken,Gedanken und da war ich echt bei vielen Themen und bei euch, mit wem ich wann, seit wann und welche Erinnerungen mit daran verbundenen sind🤭🤭😋

      Wollte gern mal sagen, schön dass es auch gibt 😍und hier mit dabei seid.

      Im ersten Ort endlich ein Frühstück und weiter. Normale Route heute aber durch den Regen viel schlammig. Zudem den Weg immer gefunden und kein Zeichen übersehen.

      Ziemlich viel auch an Gefühlschaos gehabt, viele Eindrücke aufgenommen und wirklich schöne Orte gesehen. In mir vieles geordnet und einen wirklich einzigartigen Moment gehabt, wo ich beide Arme zur Seite gestreckt habe, aufs Tal zugelaufen bin und dachte das Panorama zu umarmen und einfach das Gefühl aufkam "Freiheit und alles ist möglich" und war total mir selbst nahe. Gänsehautmoment.

      Irgendwie bin ich heute stolz auf mich 😊

      Jetzt bin ich platt und fühle mich emotional völlig durcheinander, war heute eben auch viel hoch und runter.

      Eine Tagesetappe hab ich schon aufgeholt und wenn die Energie, Zeit und Geld ausreicht, dann schaffe ich es vielleicht auch noch ans Meer von Santiago de Compostela nach Finistere.

      Hoffe bei euch ist alles gut 💋
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      Lieber Klausi, ich drücke dick und schicke dir ganz viel Energie für den Tag nach Spanien.




      Nur Mut solche Tage müssen sein sie reinigen die Seele. Lg Johanna 🙋‍♀️😘

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    • Day8

      Day 8: Estella

      September 17 ⋅ ⛅ 73 °F

      We hiked 25 beautiful kilometers between our lodging in Obanos and our hostal in Estella, with a few very steep inclines along the way.

      Obanos and Puente de la Reina were glowing in the early morning light.

      Between the towns, we saw a farmer irrigating his crops, and a blue tractor rolling down the road. Red peppers, green tomatoes, and leafy greens were visible along El Camino, giving way to plots of grape vines and olive orchards as the day wore on.

      Fields with hues of brown and gold are becoming prevalent as we move south and west.

      After Puente de la Reina, the path became quite steep leading up to Mańeru.

      It didn’t take long to traverse Mańeru itself, and we could soon see Cirauqui beckoning from its hill. We arrived at that village with a group of Spanish women we’d met at our albergue in Pamplona. They are on their sixth annual weeklong walk on the Camino, and they are a fun, boisterous group. They put on an impromptu 15-minute song and dance fest in front of a Cirauqui cafe before we continued on toward Lorca. Along the way, we sampled fresh fruit from a donativo stand before losing track of our Spanish ladies.

      Lunch was a quick bocadillo and a slice of tortilla in Lorca, with about 9 kilometers to go to reach tonight’s lodging in Estella.

      By the time we arrived, our feet were protesting! Tomorrow we’ll walk 19 kilometers to Los Arcos.
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    • Day12


      September 16 in Spain ⋅ 🌙 18 °C

      Kolejny piękny dzień. Do tej pory żaden dzień nie był łatwy wręcz przeciwnie każdy zaskakuje przeróżnymi trudnościami głównie fizycznymi i również tym że nie można niczego zrobić szybciej, więcej lub lepiej, niż możliwości twoich nóg. Wprowadzenie sie w taki stan wymusza bardzo pokorne myślenie. Pomału oddalają się emocję i troski, które są mało ważne, a krystalizuje się prawdziwy cel tej pielgrzymki. Próba odnalezienia poprzez drogę Jakuba drogi do Boga jest niewątpliwie dużym wyzwaniem ale bardzo potrzebnym dla mnie. Myślę, że znalazłem swoje Camino w końcu.
      Mijaliśmy piękne miasteczka, niektóre zachowane prawie bez zmian z czasów średniowiecza, czasami droga prowadziła poprzez pozostałości dróg rzymskich, gdzie tylko szczątki budowli dawaly znać, jak to było dawno i fakt, że jeszcze można to dotknąć daje piękno w głowie.
      Pierwsze miasteczko Puente La Reina. Nazwane tak od mostu. Później poprzez malutkie osady zwykle osadzane na stromych górkach dotarliśmy do Estella. Za dawnych czasów to była taka mała Pamplona. Dzięki pielgrzymom tętniła życiem. Były głównie 3 osady: Franków, Nawaryjczykow i Żydów. W 1328 roku populacja Żydowska zmniejszyła się prawie do zera na skutek rzezi. Również w XIV wieku miasto skurczyło się do połowy dzięki ospie.
      Otoczona była zamkami obronnymi i pilnującymi porzadku i bezpieczeństwa a prowadzonych przez Joannitów i Templariuszy. Niestety z zamków nic nie zostało. Estella również ma święto biegania z bykami ale jest pod patronatem Sw. Andrzeja w sierpniu Miasto jest położone nad rzeką Eba. Bardzo urokliwe.
      Po drodze mieliśmy dużo okazji do kosztowania fig, jerzyn i winogron.
      Jutro czeka nas fontanna z winem.
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      Most La Reina z XI wieku to podobno najpiękniejszy most romański w Hiszpanii (i największy?). Łuki odbijające się w wodzie tworzą urzekającą całość. Niesamowite wrażenie wywierają też miasteczka (wioski?) o zwartej zabudowie i wąskich uliczkach (w górę, w dół... :) Nie mówiąc już o budowlach sakralnych od zewnątrz i wewnątrz (szczególnie tych z surowym wystrojem). To wszystko stwarza zapewne, poza olbrzymim trudem pokonywania własnych słabości w czasie długiej pieszej wędrówki, sprzyjający klimat do głębszego poznania swojego wnętrza i odczucia bliskości Boga.




      Piękne zdjęcie🤩

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    You might also know this place by the following names:

    Estella-Lizarra, Естела, Lizarra, Estella, エステーリャ, Stella, Estela, 31200, Эстелья, Естелья, Estella - Lizarra, 埃斯特利亚

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