The Camino odyssey is almost over. One more sleep. I’m conflicted about it coming to an end. What an amazing experience. I want to remember all the special moments and my favorite things of this journey. There are so many and my brain is overfull!
You might remember I wrote a blog discussing my favorite things from the first half of the journey. So here today, with only one day to go, are some special memories from the second half.
Leon – by the time we hit Leon our bodies were in the groove and we were feeling great but we still enjoyed a day off in this town. The ancient city and the wonderful food and wine of Spain made Leon
a great memory
Possibly my favorite historic site of the whole Camino was the spectacular Puente de Orbigo bridge with its 19 arches that inspired the story of Don Quixote.
I loved the little town of Rabanal del Camino where
we went to vespers in a crumbling ancient church and then watched the sunrise the next morning over the village as we hiked up to Cruz de Ferro.
Cruz de Ferro was a touching moment. Monumental in reaching it, and emotional too. A quiet and spiritual place for many pilgrims.
cathedral in Astorga and the castle in Ponferrada both were unforgettably beautiful and ancient.
We didn’t need a day off
physically but are glad we took an extra day in the great valley village of Villafranca where I soaked my feet in the Rio Burbia on a gorgeous sunny day. We also had a fabulous and memorable authentic Spanish meal here.
Ever since our very cold and wet crossing of the
Pyrenees on Day Two we have been prepared to get wet crossing the final mountain range into Galicia. But Mother Nature has been so kind to us and our ponchos have stayed in the pack. Our two day crossing of the Galacian Mountains could not have been more spectacular.
The historic village of Portomarin and the story of how they moved the town and flooded the valley for a reservoir during the 1960’s was fascinating. Because of Spain’s drought the reservoir was empty and the remains of the medieval village visible. One of the craziest things I’ve ever seen.
Traversing Spain on foot gives a unique opportunity to live and breathe the unique and varied cultures of this country. Learning about the indigenous Basque people as well as the surprising ancient Celtic history of Galicia has been just fascinating.
The same goes for the variety of scenery and topography we have conquered and enjoyed. Mountains to plains, forests and seas, Spain is a wealth of beauty blessed by Mother Nature.
We have also learned so much about the vast
Spanish agricultural life, and it has been a unique and beautiful time to walk through Spain, as corn and grapes and wheat and beets and nuts and so much more are harvested from this rich land.
And so our journey ends. Tomorrow we arrive in Santiago. I’m not sure how I feel about it coming to an end. I know I will need a few days to process it – and then I promise to share some final thoughts. But until then, one more day. #onemoreday
477 miles walked. 12 miles to go.