Spain
Sarria

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

42 travelers at this place:

  • Day29

    Triacastela to Sarria

    May 18, 2018 in Spain ⋅ ☀️ 57 °F

    Good evening from Sarria, Spain. Sarria is the starting point for hundreds of people per day that wish to walk to Santiago and earn the Compostela certificate. According to the “rules”, a person must walk the last 100 km to earn the certificate which is 62 miles. I have already walked around 270 miles but it doesn’t mean anything, I must walk the last 62 into Santiago to qualify. Now, having said all that, I couldn’t care less if I get the Compostela or not...it is in Latin so I can’t read it anyway. I also only marginally care if I see Santiago but I would like to see what all the fuss is about when it comes to Santiago. I am simply interested in finishing what I started. So, here is the deal. I really need to be in Porto, Portugal by next Thursday as my flight leaves for home on Friday morning. I really should arrive in Portugal on Wednesday to give myself some breathing room. Sooo...that means I need to cover 18 miles a day for the next four days so I can be in Santiago on Tuesday. I have been slowed up with my knee issue so it has put on more pressure. I have dumped all of the weight out of my pack to lighten the load. Bare necessities at this point. Anything that I could do without got dumped. Tent...clothes except for the bare minimum...flashlight...anything that weighed anything...it’s only stuff. But, I still don’t know if I can pull this off. I do risk not having a tent if I cannot find a bed but I can find someplace to throw the sleeping bag down under cover if I have to. I will tell you that the past couple of days, with the leg issues, that it has been tempting to jump on a train to Portugal and lay on the beach for the next few days but I haven’t given up yet. So, out the door at 0600 in the morning and we will see how it goes. That is it from Spain tonight, I hope this finds everyone well.Read more

  • Day142

    Sarria - July 21

    July 21, 2018 in Spain ⋅ ☁️ 66 °F

    July 21

    We have been walking for a month! Only 11.5 miles today through more beautiful countryside. The hike went by easily even though we climbed a bunch more and then had to descend steeply at times. It was a relaxing hike...farms, cows, roosters, foggy air, and good company.

    Quite a few from our group walked a little further than we did today, so it’s possible we won’t see them until Santiago...hoping sooner, but we will see 🙂

    We rented a room in an apartment right near the older part of town, and Alan was excited to see they were having an urban downhill bike event. After sharing a huge pizza, we walked along the route and watched the riders zoom down stairs, around corners, and over jumps...very cool!

    Now that we are in Sarria, we have to get two stamps a day in our pilgrim passports to earn our Compostela (The “Compostela“ is the accreditation/certificate of the pilgrimage to the Tomb of St. James). A lot of people start here in Sarria because you must walk at least 100 kilometers to earn a Compostela. Since the number of pilgrims has now really increased, we made the decision to just book our own place to stay for the rest of the way, so then we can walk without worrying about getting a bed 🛏.

    Can’t believe we will see the 100 kilometers left mark tomorrow! When you start something that is 800 kilometers long, it seems the end will never happen. I will try to remember to take a picture of it.
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  • Day10

    Von Fonfía nach Sarria

    July 30 in Spain ⋅ ☁️ 16 °C

    Der Abstieg von den 1330 Metern war nicht ohne. Es ging einige Male wieder ordentlich bergauf. Die letzten Kilometer waren wirklich nur sehr schwer zu ertragen. Kaum in Sarria angekommen nahmen wir die erste Herberge die zu unserer verwunderung ziemlich leer war. Um die Schmerzen zu besänftigen liefen wir einen weiteren Kilometer zur Apotheke in der Stadt. Dort wurde erstmal ein Ibuprofen-Paracetamol-Koffein-Alkohol-Nikotin gemisch dem Körper zugeführt um die Schmerzen zu besänftigenRead more

  • Day11

    Pilgrims and People

    May 29 in Spain ⋅ ☀️ 23 °C

    The Camino is full of people and of gossip. The first week where we walked with 'our Camino family' of pilgrims, you meet people with their own stories and share the stories of others you've heard on the way. Everyone becomes a legend. You overlap with people as you leap-frog from town to town, all trudging to Compostella.

    We hear of an Irish man who is walking his 3rd Camino this year. His mum always wanted to walk The Way but passed away before she got a chance. He walked it first for her and placed a stone at Cruz de Ferro in memory of her. It is tradition to drop a stone at Ferro - originally this stone represented a sin that you would leave near the end of the Camino, discarding before reaching the Church of St James. As tourists are, now there is apparently a pile of stones and trinkets left here.  The Spanish poor and gypsies collect anything left of value, such as baby's shoes for the miscarried, or necklaces and rings offered as tokens of love, lost. Every few months the pile of rocks and trinkets gets so high, a truck clears the spot so the sins can be replaced by other pilgrims'.  He walked the Camino a second time for himself and realised that the stone he had left for his mum had been carted away and was so angry about this that he decided to make a plaque in honour of her and will affix it at the cross so 'the bastards can't take it away'. He says this in Irish jest apparently, but for him I'm sure it is all a long grieving process. He would have probably spent more time this year on Camino than he has at home.  I hope after he places the plaque he can find peace.

    There's Takeshi the Japanese man. The one non-Christian-heritage man I've met who has walked perhaps 7 Camino. Seeking a different life than that prescribed in Japan he lives now in Spain. When people ask where he is from, he replies 'from everywhere'. Besides Japanese and Spanish, he speaks decent French and English. When we ask him why he repeatedly walks the Camino he replies in accent 'for the miracles'. It's hard to expand on his answer, so we change the topic and buy him another beer.

    We hear of a man who walked the camino with a dog. Depending on the story, he either had a pack of dogs or adopted a husky puppy. The alburge refuse to house him and his dog, so he camps by rivers on the outskirts of town. Over the meseta plains the dog overheats so he walks the distances at night. A 750km walk - the ultimate holiday for a dog and his man.

    Beautiful Pieter from Bourdeax has a wife from Romania, at home with his daughters. We bump into him by the Puente La Reina Bridge, eyes closed in the setting sun. I see him again in the church boarding in Estella, applying tiger balm to his feet which are suffering from tendonitis. I ask him if it helps and he replies 'not really' and shrugs. We pass him in Logrono, crossing the square eating ice cream. Of all pilgrims I've met, he seems the most at ease and the most calm. I've never seen him walking, but when in town he doesn't hide in the alburge or fumble for a nap and shower. He enjoys the travel and what the town has to offer.  The last I saw him he was leaving our table to catch another Romanian pilgrim, to practice his wife's language.

    The Canadian with the bright eyes and separated- toed runners has a quick break in a roadside stop. Although everyone looks at katrinas thongs in shock (our feet ache from our boots so our aussie sandals are a blessing) he points and yells that she is doing an amazing walk. He wants to walk the Camino next time in bare feet, giving himself double the time to make the pained distance. We walked with him briefly in Estella, where we nearly have to jog to keep up with his pace. He originally flew in to Barcelona with the intention to mountain climb, but on the plane he heard of the Camino and left his gear in a locker and headed to do the walk. He doesn't have much time so is jogging the whole thing - hoping to complete 30-60km a day, depending on the terrain. Although he wants to complete it, he is already disappointed he will never see the same faces again as he outstrips us on his way to Compostela.

    Mike from Canada and Paul from Ireland walk the Camino together. They met on a past walk and now, though both so different, repeat the walk together. Mike is a self proclaimed embodiment of the Camino - always offering advice on how to stretch sore legs, or which alburge have the most authentic experiences, or what to carry in your pack. He shares stories of grandure from his past travels, translates the menu, and repeats his anecdotes. In Pamplona, the first big city, Mike enters the bar and pulls the pilgrim to one table. Last year when he walked he came into the same bar and had a grest party, he wants to recreate it. The other Aussie girls, tired from the walk, leave to find a quiet dinner, but we stay to fulfil Mike's dream. He shows us his Camino tattoos and remarks how a real pilgrim carries his pack and starts walking before dawn. Paul sits quietly, sending the odd work email. He has done many Camino and looks so well with a glint in his eye and both feet on the ground. Patient, one foot in front of the other.

    Rachael from America is walking alone. A younger girl who has finished biology and is now studying dentistry. She is lovely and down to earth. She travelled to France with her boyfriend but now walks across Spain on her own. She tells us how in America, the poor children have such bad teeth because all their parents can afford is coke and Macdonalds. The rich kids also come in with holes in their teeth because their parents don't believe in fluoride. The poor and the privileged. She is walking because although she is smart, her parents paid for her college. She is doing the Camino for herself, so she can be proud of her own achievements. For someone so young, and travelling so alone, I'm already proud of her.

    One night we spent in an alburge in Zubiri, an old man came in who looked like he'd walked further than the two days from Saint Jean to Zubiri. Perhaps because of his age he had taken longer than most to cross the Pyrenees mountain? In the bar later that night over beers we hear that he is The Dutchman, who left his home in Netherlands to walk the camino, the whole way by foot. He left two and a half months ago and has only just crossed the boarder of Spain. Desperate, we want to speak to him, to shake his hand and ask him how his feet are. By daybreak he has gone.

    I have learnt, twice in my life now, that I have no real desire to conquer mountains or to trek for the sake of a stamp. Despite the repeated conversations and the constant search for enlightenment, I miss our original group of pilgrims the most. For as busy as the French Way is, the characters you meet on the way do form part of the legacy of the Camino.
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  • Day15

    The Best Day's Walking So Far

    October 2, 2018 in Spain ⋅ ☀️ 24 °C

    After our quiet evening in the hills at Herrerias de Valcarce we awoke to a freezing morning. With a clear starry night the temperature in these mountain quickly dropped to near freezing point. After breakfast we took a short transfer to another mountain top start where the views down over the surrounding hillsides were absolutely breathtaking. Some of the valleys were still filled with white fluffy clouds which had not been burnt off by the low sun.

    The region we are now in is the mountainous province of Galicia. This is a huge contrast to the flat landscapes we had been hiking through a few days earlier. Although the walking is harder, it is infinitely more rewarding. Apart from the glorious views, the cool, clear mountain air made us all feel much fresher.

    Another feature of this region is stone houses with slate roofs. Some of the roofs were tremendous examples of the workmanship of the tilers, almost a work of art in themselves.

    Although we started at around 1400 metres in elevation and knew that we had to finish the day in Sarria at only 400 metres, the descent did not actually begin in earnest until long after the half way point had been reached. In fact we had a significant amount of steep climbing to complete before we could face the additional challenge of the steep downhill.

    Fortunately the path itself was in much better condition than the treacherous rocky paths that had been such a challenge yesterday. In addition we had the benefit of liberal shade along the way.

    When we felt that the steepest of the climbing section had been completed (at around the 10 km point), we took advantage of a lovely hilltop cafe to celebrate with a hot coffee. This was also the perfect location to sit, admire the views and appreciate just how far we had climbed. I believe that anyone undertaking a walk like this one simply must take the time to savour the journey. Especially in this region, the surroundings are just so magnificent, that it would be a crime to just hurry through without stopping time and time again to appreciate the beauty that is all around us.

    Although we might have been expecting an immediate descent to begin, the path actually continued along a saddle for some kilometres. Sometimes there was a small drop, but this was quickly followed by another rise. Apparently this is a classic feature of the Galician mountains. It often means that you can never get into a rhythm.

    It was not until we had reached the 16 km mark that the serious descent began. On this terrain you feel your toes squashed into the end of your shoes. The backs of your legs start to feel the constant strain and you need to pay close attention to every footstep, lest you take a tumble.

    As we descended we pass through a couple of tiny villages. At one time we found ourselves in the middle of a small herd of cows. At the front of the her a cattle dog was making sure they went the right way, and at the rear, the owner was making sure they kept moving. The houses crowded on either side of the path. Some of these looked like they were danger of collapse, while others had been heavily restored.

    With about 6 km to go we caught our first glimpses of Triacastella, nestled neatly in the bottom of the valley. We continued to descend steadily and each glimpse of the town showed that we were slowly getting closer and closer.

    When we noticed an enticing looking cafe we decided that it would be a nice spot to have a drink and rest before completing the walk to Triacastella. There were several young pilgrims already resting there. It so happened that two of our team members were celebrating birthdays today. Christine Swistak was turning 59 and Allan Barlin was celebrating being born exactly 10 years prior to Christine.

    When I suggested we could sing another round of Happy Birthday to Christine, a young German pilgrim immediately produced a ukulele and began to sing. She had a lovely singing voice and for an all too brief moment, we all felt united in the spirit of the Camino. It is these completely unplanned events that for me, make travel so magical.

    Soon we all wished each other yet another "Buen Camino" and continued on or way. A short time later we were in Triacastella and the day's walk had been completed. With a final total of 22 km, it had been one of the longest of our trip so far, but somehow it did not seem too hard at all. Perhaps we are all getting stronger, but I think it was more like being carried along on a wave of positive energy.The slightly cooler weather certainly helped also.

    We arrived at Triacastella around 3 pm - just in time for lunch. This might seem a little strange in Australia, but in Spain the rhythm of life is completely different. It is not at all unusual to have lunch late in the day and dinner much, much later. Dinner is seldom eaten before 8 pm, and often as late as 10 pm.

    After a brief stop at the huge Samos Monastery, we continued by bus the final few km to Sarria. The main claim to fame of Sarria would appear to be that it is the closest point to Santiago that you can begin a Camino and still qualify for your Compostela (certificate). I guess that makes it a popular starting point for those will not much time or energy to devote to a longer pilgrimage.

    My first impression of Sarria was slightly underwhelming as it appeared to lack the charm and history of so many of the other towns we had passed through over the past 10 days. We are booked for one night at the Hotel Alfonso IX. I guess that if it was good enough for the Fonsie, it will be good enough for us. And it was.

    It is hard to believe that in just two day's time our Camino will be complete and we will have arrived in Santiago. Tomorrow we have another long stage to complete, but I already sense that the group is really looking forward to it. Since Santiago is now almost on the horizon we are expecting to be sharing the path with a much higher number of pilgrims.
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  • Day32

    Sarria

    September 18, 2016 in Spain ⋅ ☀️ 63 °F

    This is where many people start the Camino because it's just over 100 km from Santiago, and in order to receive a Compostela you must walk the last 100 km. That means that the Camino will probably be more crowded from here.

  • Day30

    Sarria 26 km

    September 29, 2017 in Spain ⋅ ☀️ 20 °C

    Im Moment sieht es fasst wie in der Schweiz aus. Ein paar wenige Regentropfen hatte ich heute. Schöne Wege durch Waldfpfade durfte ich durchpilgern.

  • Day42

    The sad fate of Samos

    June 4, 2017 in Spain ⋅ 🌙 8 °C

    Founded by the Desert Fathers before even the IXth C church was begun, this was one of the largest houses in Spain. Now alas, the Monestario San Julian de Samos is reduced to 8 monks and 2 novices. Even with government aid, listing as a national monument and bus loads of tourists they have struggled to survive.
    But the monks are nothing if not resourceful and they have learned a lesson from European companies. Yes folks, Chinese capital.
    Profiting from the long association with Oriental guests, here for example is a statue of Confucius on pilgrimage, the monestary has been renamed (for what one hopes was a sizeable sum.) In return, the ancient sage will be risen to sainthood and the PRC government will have the right to build a replica with working monks in a location still not announced.
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  • Day32

    Day 30. SARRIA!

    October 4, 2018 in Spain ⋅ ☀️ 29 °C

    The official start of the last 100kms (needed to complete to receive the official completion certificate) here we go.

    I must say, today was my day. We left later, something I wasn't sure I wanted to do at all, but I stayed back from the group to walk by myself and it was just what I needed. I feel like I owned today, it was a hard day (lots of up and down mountains) but for me it was my easiest, I didn't struggle mentally to get though the day and before I knew it, we where in Sarria.

    Now after a shower, lunch and a big walk around town (as if a 20km walk here wasn't enough 😂😂) a rest in bed before I pack my bag for the morning and head out to dinner.

    Only 5 walking days to go, 5 days, I can't believe we are at this point already.

    Today I am more proud of myself then I have ever been !!

    Buen Camino!!
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You might also know this place by the following names:

Sarria, サリア, Сарриа, Саррія, 萨里亚

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