Spain
Villafranca del Bierzo

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

39 travelers at this place:

  • 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

  • Day140

    Villafranca

    July 19 in Spain

    We hiked back up into some wine country today ending in Villafranca. Tomorrow, we will try to go about 18 miles ending with the climb to O’Cebreiro. The weather may be wet with some thunderstorms, so we will see if we get that far. ☔️🌩

    Tonight, we had a fun dinner with our friends from the Netherlands, England and Japan. The chickpea soup, that some ordered, ended up having intestine and some other unidentifiable bits which caused lots of uncontrollable laughter...good times. Thank goodness I had the pasta salad!!!

    We are at a stage of our journey where some of our group may go faster or slower to get to Santiago, so we hugged and talked of looking out for each other at the end in case we don’t see each other after tonight. I’m going to think positively and say we will see each other in Santiago, if not before! 🙂

    We have 113 miles left to go.
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  • 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

  • Day43

    It is now 9 pm and we have now had dinner...usually I write up the day on arrival, after showering, but today I just relaxed and finished my book. And there was no huge incentive, as the wifi here is extremely weak, as we are down in the valley, and everywhere has bad reception I gather. However, I will write the words and go down near the dining room and see if it will upload...

    So we are now at Villafranca del Bierzo, a picturesque town, with many huge churches, set on the side of a hill. And we are staying at the end of the town as we leave tomorrow, near a bridge over the river, with a view from our window of the water...we left Ponferrada just before 8, and soon got into step with Janette and Brigitte which was lovely. We accidentally walked along the road out of town, not the “picturesque “ way, but we were not unhappy, as it was urban sprawl wherever you went really, and this saved us 2.5 kms!!! But once we left town, it was a spectacular day...through lovely little villages, and finally up through the vineyards of the Bierzo. This is where we saw the grape harvest time, and we saw that exact spot...no picking there today, but we could see activity on hills around. And today again was a cloudless bright day...cool for the morning, but certainly did heat up as the afternoon wore on. But it was so breathtaking we hardly noticed, just a beautiful panorama everywhere. (Last time it was misty until afternoon, totally different scene!).

    At about lunchtime we stopped at a small town and had a really good lunch with Janette and Brigitte...pimientos de Padron, and patatas with blue goat cheese dip. The potatoes were freshly finely sliced and fried...looked like potato crisps, but oh so different, and the blue cheese was hot and amazing! A highlight!! Then we went on, reinvigorated, and walked through the vineyards till we finally arrived at Villafranca.

    After the showering procedures, (and leaving a bag of our filthy clothes to be washed and sun dried for €8!) we had down time, then went to the plaza Mayor where the girls, plus the Canadian sisters (Judy and Dorothy ) were staying...we had lost them for a couple of days..and we had a pre dinner drink. Then we went back to our casa where we have dinner included, and had one of the best meals of the Camino so far!! Highlight being peppers stuffed with cod....it was just amazing!! And when Amr mentioned that we had been here at the hotel 5 years ago she immediately withdrew the carafe of wine she was bringing for us and replaced it with a good bottle of Bierzo!! How nice!

    All so good! Don’t feel as tired today as yesterday (probably was the strenuous downhill), even though today was almost 24 kms. Tomorrow we have chosen the easier flatter path, which I think is wise, and it is only about 15 kms. We did the alternative over the top route last time, which had spectacular views, but feel this time we’ll be conservative! And the next day, we truly have a climb to the little Celtic village where we spend 2 days...so we’ll save our strength for,then. Not going to try to send the spectacular views of today yet...will send them probably tomorrow when hopefully the wifi works, but hope to send this now.
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  • Day26

    Villafranca del Bierzo

    June 24, 2017 in Spain

    Back in wine country!! Though I'm not going hard... Recovering from yesterday and getting rest in before the last big hike up a hill tomorrow. Can't believe how fast time has gone...
    Another great walking day even with tired legs and feet. Last night's celebrations had nothing to do with it of course! 😉

  • Day30

    Made the decision this morning to pause the Camino journey for this year. Eric is in too much pain to continue. Seems like Villafranca is the perfect place to pause. At this Church of Santiago there is the Door of Forgiveness where pilgrims could receive the certificate needed to receive their absolution (which they referred to as jubilee, as in Leviticus 25) if they were not well enough to continue.
    -----
    We walked 428 km (265 miles). Crossed the Pyrenees mountains, walked through multiple regions, across some of the meseta, and walked up the highest points on the camino. I look forward to finishing up another time, perhaps with more friends and family.
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  • Day36

    Ponferrada to Villafranca - 25 kms

    October 27, 2017 in Spain

    I was in a room with three others, an Italian, one from Hong Kong, and the other from Tiawan. Those guys snore too. Had to use my ear plugs to get some sleep.

    Had a pretty good breakfast with yogurt, cofffee, OJ, and pastries, then packed and left in the dark. The sun does not rise until well after eight (8:56 tomorrow to be exact) and with no roosters and dogs to worry about, got a pretty good night's sleep once the ear plugs went in. Think I will alternate between the traditional albergue and the private room route. A private room is much nicer and quieter.

    Passed the castle on the way out, and if I recall the movie (The Way) correctly, it was in Ponferrada where the backpack was stolen, then the next day the son carried the pack to the city gates. No gates, but a pretty park. I think the attached picture is of the walkway. If not, then it is quite pretty anyway.

    Unusual trail markers and it's pretty difficult to get lost with something like that to point out the camino.

    Passing through one small village, it appears that Halloween is a big deal here, unless there is something I do not umderstand. We'll assume that it's all about Halloween.

    Fall is here. Not sure about where you are, but here it is fall. Met a group from Australia walking along and also ran into the Canadian individual that has walked this way several times. Guess she does not mind doing her laundry (but I do and I think that is the worse feature of the camino. Just love it when I can find machines or someone that will do it for a modest fee). Today I found a very nice albergue with several private rooms and the owners were willing to do my laundry for five euros. That is what I call a deal!

    The last picture is a view of the mountain I will be on for the next couple of days, then as far as I am concerned, it is all downhill. Once I reach Sarria, the trail becomes a known entity and the goal is in sight. I will pass through Sarria on the 4th day of walking (beginning tomorrow).

    I ate light tonight as I had a huge lunch and still trying to digest it. Yogurt is very healthy you know.

    Tomorrow, one more time, on the road again.
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  • Day29

    Walked in and instantly loved the church. The last few days of hiking have been on some sorts of shale and we began to see more and more stone houses of cut shale. The last few towns have had houses roofed with black shale. The church walls were made of cut shale and the vaulted ceilings used black shale. It felt very much like a church that fit into the village as opposed to being built of imported stone.Read more

  • Day36

    Villafranca to Herrerias - 22 kms

    October 27, 2017 in Spain

    Today was one of those days that occur all to infrequently. The morning was clear and brisk. As the sun rose and I could see more I realized that this just might be the best day of my camino. It will really take something to top it. Scenery was fall beautiful.

    Breakfast of yogurt, coffee and juice, and pastries paved the way for a perfectly delightful walk. While most of it was along an almost empty road, other parts were along a country lane with trees turning color, fields full of animals (think sheep and cattle) and streams keeping the woodsy noise pleasant and relaxing. It felt great to be alive!

    The trail had a steady uphill angle to it, and given that I still have to climb over 600 meters in about seven kms tomorrow, I want to leave early tomorrow and climb while it is cool. It will be really "cool" to arrive at O'cebreio and see the sunrise (I need a rooster tomorrow with an accurate clock).

    I had a second breakfast, then passed through a hamlet and noticed a house with an unusual in-law suite...on the third floor. So when the owner tires of his in-laws he just invites them to enjoy the view from the patio by stepping out the door and wala, all in-law issues are solved.

    The pilgrim stature made me realize that I still have a good distance to navigate, but have come a long way. If this wonderful fall weather continues, making Santiago by November 5 should not be an issue.

    Hope you enjoy the pictures. Lots of detail so please expand and see the sights.

    Lunch was a ham and egg omlet. A bit salty, but I was hungry and probably needed the salt. Plan to loaf around this afternoon and enjoy a Menu del Dia for dinner. I'm sitting outside the cafe enjoying the afternoon sun chatting with a pilgrim from Germany on her last day...no more vacation.

    My room has a window that opens onto the street. Kids are playing, adults are chatting, and I'm thinking about a beer. Haven't had one in several days due to not feeling totally up to par, but today is a different day. Yep, I'm going down and grab a cold one.

    And it was really good! Also found out that dinner at seven is ok, so I'll enjoy an early dinner tonight.

    Dinner was a very large salad with tuna, chicken with French fries, and a navel orange for dessert. They gave me a very dull knife to cut it up. Anyway, very filling and am calling it a night.
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Villafranca del Bierzo

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