Museo del Bierzo

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8 travelers at this place

  • Day23

    Back to Ponferrada

    June 25, 2019 in Spain ⋅ ☁️ 14 °C

    I had a really tough but almost always enjoyable walk today up to Peñalba De Santiago, one of the most beautiful villages in Spain. It’s tucked way up in the mountains and has been inhabited since the tenth century when the hermit saint Genadio set up some caves for hermits. The walk was very remote and I even walked in some of the channels made by the Romans to get water over to the hills with gold nearby. I got there just in time for a very interesting visit to the 10th century church. After walking around, I pondered my situation.

    My plans were to stay in Peñalba tonight and then take a more remote path tomorrow to connect to the Camino Invierno.

    But three things made me change my mind. First I had had no cell service almost the whole way and tomorrow would be no better. Second, I had inexplicably forgotten to download tracks for tomorrow on my GPS. And third, even though I was able to get offline tracks onto my phone, the battery would have died about half way through.

    Now I love a challenge as much as the next guy, but this seemed stupid. So a very nice couple from Madrid drove me back to Ponferrada. And I will start the Invierno tomorrow from the proper place.
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  • Day22

    Into Ponferrada

    June 24, 2019 in Spain ⋅ 🌧 15 °C

    This walk turned out to be a lot longer than I thought —another 30 km somehow. It must have been the tracks I followed, since I was taking a “cheating walk” rather than following the official Camino Olvidado to the end.

    The first cheating was when the arrows pointed me up to a sanctuary high above the reservoir. Since I was walking in pea soup and since the church is relatively modern, (why walk an extra km or two to see a modern church?!) I just shaved a km or two of ascent off the day. The rest of the day was foggy and humid but good walking weather. No particularly stunning scenery —over and around a dam/reservoir and through a couple of pine forests.

    At one point my GPS was taking me through some really overgrown mess and I saw a track going up and heard voices up there. So I thought that was the better option. Sure enough there was a group of cyclists with diabetes doing a Spain-Germany cycle. They pointed me in the right direction and within a few hours I was in Ponferrada.

    Soon after I arrived, it started to rain —lucky me to have missed it all on the walk. Doing a little legal work this afternoon, and I’ll then meet up with some others who are going to walk the Camino Invierno too.
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  • Day25

    Rabanal del Camino-Ponferrada

    May 13, 2019 in Spain ⋅ ☀️ 14 °C

    32 km de marche. Ce matin, Martin a décidé d’aller rejoindre sa famille pour la mort de son beau père. J’ai décidé de poursuivre l’aventure pour lui et pour moi. De retour dans les paysages à couper le souffle.Read more

  • Day19

    Sixteenth stop - Ponferrada

    May 17, 2018 in Spain ⋅ ☀️ 20 °C

    Villares de Óbrigo -> 15km (+52km by train) -> Ponferrada
    After yesterday's beautiful diner, which was a real melting pot of nationalities, today we walked to Astorga, where we visited the beautiful Cathedral and walked around town. From there we took a train (and skipped a huge storm it seems) to Ponferrada from which we will continue the road tomorrow!Read more

  • Day25


    August 26, 2019 in Spain ⋅ ⛅ 20 °C

    Wie immer tauchen natürlich auch heute wieder einige bekannte Gesichter (Alessio, Carla, Martin, Cecile,...) in der Unterkunft auf, ohne das man sich irgendwie verabredet hätte. (Und es gibt unzählige Herbergen in Ponferrada) Aber das ist hier halt so. 😂

    Nach Dusche und Waschen besichtige ich mit Martin gemeinsam die Tempelritter Burg und gehen anschließend gemeinsam mit Cecile zum Abendessen.
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  • Day27

    Ponferrada 26 km

    September 26, 2017 in Spain ⋅ ☀️ 27 °C

    Mit leichtem Nebel ging es Richtung Chruz de Fierro. Sehr Eindrücklich und mit Gänsehaut durfte ich nach über 2000 km zu Fuss meine mitgebrachten Steine ablegen. Danach ging es meisten abwärts bis ins Ziel. Superschöne Natur durfte ich geniessen.Read more

  • Day33


    October 29, 2016 in Spain ⋅ 🌙 13 °C

    To reach Ponferrada we had to climb up into a mountain range which would take us to the highest point on the Camino, a place called Cruz de Ferro. At 1500m elevation, we had walked up through forested mountains again dotted on their ridges and peaks by wind turbines- out only markers, like sentinels, the larger they loomed, the closer we knew we were to the top!

    Cruz de Ferro is an iron cross at which pilgrims leave something of themselves ( usually a stone as a symbol) behind at the foot of the cross to symbolise this part of their pilgrimage. It was a very quiet and peaceful place surrounded by pines and wooded glades. We stood and remembered those who had gone before us and all those we loved.

    We also had a local sheep dog befriend us on the path up the mountain. See pic. These dogs were traditionally used by local farmers to protect their sheep and cows from mountain wolves. He stayed with us for about 8k and led us up the mountain path, which was single file through scrub and trees. Every now and then he would stop to turn and check on us as we puffed up the rocky path after him. Whoever said that a companion on the Camino had to be human! I will never forget this lovely affectionate Camino dog who made it his business to look after us on The Way.

    Inevitably, 'what must go up- must come down!' echoed in our ears as we commenced a very steep descent of 900m in 11k. This steep descent pocketed by villages along the way led us out of the mountains and down to the city of Ponferrada which is the capital of the El Bierzo region In Castille de Leon. It is hemmed in by mountains and sits at the head of a very long valley stretching out ahead of us like a canvas. It would take us the next 3 days to walk the length of it!

    Ponferrada's history was both Roman as it was an important settlement and also Medieval. Its name derives from its bridge built in 1082, the first to be built of iron. Hence, Pons Ferrata became Ponferrada.
    It also has a most magnificent castle with an interesting history and was declared a national monument!

    In the 1100s the Templar Knights were made custodians of Ponferrada by King Fernando in 1178. Having inherited the original fort here, the Templar Knights built it into something much larger. Not long after they were, sadly dissolved. The castle stands as a monument to them and their protection of the city and especially the pilgrims who travelled through it on their way to Santiago.See Pic.
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You might also know this place by the following names:

Museo del Bierzo