Camino de Santiago - The Way of St James

Walk northern Spain`s pilgrimage route to Santiago




From $1,350 Land only

Book this holiday

Holiday Overview


  • On foot to the majestic Santiago de Compostela Cathedral
  • Guided with full baggage support & hotel/guesthouse accommodation
  • Qualify for your Compostela certificate by walking the last 100km
  • Great value with all meals but 1 dinner included in the price

Also known as the ‘Way of Saint James', the walking the Camino de Santiago is one of the world's oldest pilgrimages. Our version of this famous route takes us from Sarria all the way to Santiago de Compostela, over the last 100 kilometre stretch that qualifies us for the ‘Compostela' - the pilgrimage certificate. From the pretty, tree-shaded streets of Sarria, we follow the iconic scallop-shell way-marks, beside waterways, through woodland and by way of scattered, picturesque villages. Finally arriving at the ancient town of Santiago, with its cobbled streets and welcoming cafes, we have the chance to visit the impressive Baroque Cathedral, now a shrine to Saint James. During our walk along the Camino de Santiago, we stay in small family run hotels and our baggage is transferred for us. Involving some long days on easy terrain, this fully guided walking holiday is steeped in the religious history of this 1000 year-old pilgrimage route.

Is this holiday for you?

This hotel & guesthouse based walking holiday week involves 6 days of walking along well marked and good paths which can be anything from forest tracks to cobbled pathways. The route is signed with the classic scallop shell of the route. Most of the walking on these days are along undulating or relatively flat paths. Each of these days has between 4 - 7 hrs of walking, some days are 23km and others are only 15km. The holiday is fully guided and includes baggage transfers on all days.

Brief Itinerary

View in full
  • Meet at the group hotel in Sarria. A single timed transfer from Santiago Airport is provided.
  • Walk from Sarria to Portomarin, via Pena dos Corvos (660m).
  • Walk to Palas de Rei, via the Sierra Ligonde (720m). Visit the church at Vilar de Donas en route.
  • Walk to Melide via the traditional villages of San Xulian, Leboreiro and Furelo.
  • Walk to Arzua via Boente and Casteneda.
  • Walk from Arzua to Rua.
  • Arrival into Santiago de Compostela.
  • Departure day. A single timed transfer to Santiago Airport is provided.
Sun 03 Apr - Sun 10 Apr Code CDS /01/16/ Adult$1,350 Status 2 more to guarantee Book now
Sun 08 May - Sun 15 May Code CDS /02/16/ Adult$1,350 Status Available Book now
Sun 22 May - Sun 29 May Code CDS /03/16/ Adult$1,350 Status Available Book now
Sun 04 Sep - Sun 11 Sep Code CDS /04/16/ Adult$1,350 Status Available Book now
Sun 23 Oct - Sun 30 Oct Code CDS /05/16/ Adult$1,350 Status Available Book now
Sun 02 Apr - Sun 09 Apr Code CDS /01/17/ Adult$1,350 Status Available Book now
Sun 07 May - Sun 14 May Code CDS /02/17/ Adult$1,350 Status Available Book now
Sun 21 May - Sun 28 May Code CDS /03/17/ Adult$1,350 Status Available Book now
We sell this holiday on a Land Only basis and recommend that you book your flights to Santiago de Compostela. Please refer to the 'Joining arrangements and transfers' section of the trip dossier for further details.

Flights SHOULD NOT be booked until you have received your booking confirmation and the trip is showing 'Guaranteed to Run' or 'Limited'.

If flying from the UK Ryanair will be the best low cost airline offering flights to Santiago de Compostela. Ryanair who have flights from London Stansted. Other airports may be available. Click on the 'Flight information' link below for further information on booking low cost airlines. Alternatively if you would prefer to book a 'flight inclusive package' using scheduled airlines from the UK please contact our flights department for a quote. Whilst flight prices are likely to be more expensive you will benefit from full financial protection.

BOOK WITH KE CONFIDENCE - No surcharge guarantee*

* Against Land Only services.

Map & Itinerary

The Route

  • airport
  • point
  • trip direction
  • transfer
  • trek

Holiday Itinerary

  • Meet at the group hotel in Sarria. A single timed transfer from Santiago Airport is provided.

    Rendezvous at the group hotel in Sarria. KE Land Only package services begin with a single timed group transfer from Santiago airport on Day 1 timed to meet the arrival of the specified flight. The transfer is approx 1-2hrs. KE group services begin with evening meal. Overnight Sarria.

    • Accommodation Hotel

    • Meals d

  • Walk from Sarria to Portomarin, via Pena dos Corvos (660m).

    Sarria with its Celtic origins was a major medieval centre for pilgrims and today is a popular starting point for those with limited time but still wanting to gain a ‘Compostela’ certificate at the cathedral in Santiago. We bid our farewells to Sarria crossing the beautiful Bridge of Aspera to climb up along a ‘corredoira’ through delightful ancient woodlands. Passing many rural stone hamlets, orchards, vineyards and pretty forests we reach the high point of our route today, Pena dos Corvos (660m) which with panoramic views over the reservoir, highlights rural Galicia at its best. Descending into the Rio Mino valley our route is on quiet country roads and natural pathways. We can visit the delightful hamlet of Mercadoiro with an official population of ‘one’! A modern bridge over the deep Mino basin announces our arrival into Portomarin. In the 1960s this town was moved brick by brick to higher ground as the original area was flooded for the reservoir. The imposing church of San Nicolás, in the main square and the smaller church of San Pedro were moved stone by stone from the old to the new Portamarín. It is still possible to see the numbers on the stones. Overnight Portomarin.

    • Accommodation Hotel

    • Distance 22km

    • Meals bld

  • Walk to Palas de Rei, via the Sierra Ligonde (720m). Visit the church at Vilar de Donas en route.

    From Portomarin we have a varied day of landscapes as we contour round the reservoir, Embalse de Belesar, which we saw from the high point of yesterdays walk. This area was the scene of a bloody battle in 840 between the Moors and Christians, and we will pass the tiny stone chapel Capela de Magdalene. Climbing the ridge beyond the tiny hamlet of Ventas de Naron, we arrive at the high point of our route in the Sierra Ligonde (720m). Having enough time and energy we can make a small detour to the Romanesque church of El Salvador at Vilar de Donas, which is a national monument and ancient seat of the Knights of Santiago. The church is primarily 14th century and its effigies and frescoes are particularly impressive. A gentle climb around the side of Rosary Heights drops down to our overnight stay at Palas De Rei. Overnight Palas De Rei.

    • Accommodation Guesthouse

    • Distance 24km

    • Meals bld

  • Walk to Melide via the traditional villages of San Xulian, Leboreiro and Furelo.

    Today we have a slightly shorter day as we cross successive river valleys through beautiful farm countryside dotted with traditional villages. Soon after leaving Palas De Rei a woodland path brings us to the classic camino village of San Xulian with its tiny 12th century church, close to the banks of the Rio Pambre. Climbing gently through ancient oak woods we ascend the Pass of the Oxen (Porto de Bois) the scene of a bloody battle and reach Campanilla (515m) the high point of the day. Crossing a medieval bridge we enter the quintessential camino village of Leboreiro with its 13th century Romanesque church and attractive carvings over the main entrance. A large monument of the sword of Santiago starts a short section which crosses the Rio Furelos into another very traditional village, Furelos. It’s a final short climb through modern suburbs before we cross into the old quarter of Melide. Huddled around the central square is the austere church, Sancti Spritus, once a 14th century Augustinian monastery. Melide is a delightful spot to spend some relaxing time, with its narrow winding streets and many little cafes and restaurants serving local specialities such as the renowned octopus, pulpo a Galega. Overnight Melide.

    • Accommodation Guesthouse

    • Distance 15km

    • Meals bld

  • Walk to Arzua via Boente and Casteneda.

    We leave Melide on a cobbled pathway past St Mary’s Romanesque church and San Lazaro where many years ago there used to be a leprosy hospice. As make progress across several river valleys the wooded forest vegetation of oak and chestnut slowly transforms to eucalyptus and pine. The village of Boente, has an interesting church, Igrexa Santiago, with a friendly priest who offers blessings to passing pilgrims. Further on is the village of Casteneda, which used to fire stones for their lime, which would then be used in the building of the Cathedral at Santiago. After a short climb up to 440m we drop down crossing the attractive Rio Iso over its historic bridge and arrive in the medieval village of Ribadiso and into Arzua. Arzua has 2 churches to visit, Santa Maria and La Magdalena and is the last major town we will visit before we arrive in Santiago, Aruza is famous for it local cheese. Overnight Arzua.

    • Accommodation Guesthouse

    • Distance 14km

    • Meals bld

  • Walk from Arzua to Rua.

    A lovely ancient track from the historic quarter of Aruza town, leads through attractive woodland and streams interspersed with the tiny hamlets of Raido, Cortobe, Fondevila and Ponteladron. Alternating between tracks and quiet country lanes, landscaped by the farmers for local agriculture, we meet more and more pilgrims converging from the various routes over the North of Spain. After the village of Salceda, there is a monument to pilgrim Guillermo Watt who sadly died here, only a day away from his goal of Santiago. Continuing to the top of a gentle climb (540m) is the beautiful 18th chapel of Santa Irene with its unique carvings, named after an early Christian martyr. We make our way downhill, through a small eucalyptus wood to arrive at the pretty village of Rua. Overnight Rua.

    • Accommodation Guesthouse

    • Distance 19km

    • Meals bld

  • Arrival into Santiago de Compostela.

    Starting off amidst tall stands of eucalyptus trees, we should savour this simple tranquillity, for as we get closer and closer to Santiago there is a converging of pilgrims, asphalt and expectancy as the mood starts to intensify. After the village of Amenal we pass Lavacolla, which historically was where medieval pilgrims washed and purified themselves before entering Santiago. One last climb on asphalt brings us to Monte Del Gozo (Mount Joy) at 370m. So close to our final destination this is a special moment as we get our first glimpse of the towers of the cathedral of Santiago. Our final 4kms becomes more urban and mainly downhill as we walk all the way into the magnificent centre of Santiago, along beautiful Rua de San Pedro and Porta do Camino which lead to the pedestrian area of the historical centre and square of the Cathedral of Santiago. For those who have been diligent and collected ‘pilgrims’ stamps along the way, a ‘compostela’ certificate awaits at the adjacent Pilgrim office. Santiago de Compostela is a special rare city, whose magic can truly be enjoyed by walking around its streets. Its historical centre has been designated a World Heritage Site and offers dozens of churches and religious buildings, including the impressive cathedral which is both baroque and Romanesque at the same time.Overnight in Santiago de Compostela.

    • Accommodation Hotel

    • Distance 20km

    • Meals bl

  • Departure day. A single timed transfer to Santiago Airport is provided.

    KE Land Only package services end with breakfast at the hotel in Santiago. A single timed transfer to the airport is provided. Depending on your flight time you may have some extra time to explore the city.

    • Meals b

Holiday Information

  • An experienced local English-speaking guide
  • Single timed group airport transfers
  • All vehicle transfers required by the itinerary
  • All baggage transfers required by the itinerary
  • All accommodation as described in the trip dossier
  • All meals as detailed in the Meal Plan

  • Travel Insurance
  • Visas (if applicable)
  • Tips
  • Miscellaneous expenses - drinks and souvenirs etc

For each holiday there is a minimum number of participants required to enable it to go ahead. Once the minimum number is reached, the trip status will change from 'Available' to 'Guaranteed to run'. You can check the trip status for each departure in ‘Dates and Prices’ table. Other than in exceptional circumstances, we will not cancel a trip once it has achieved this guaranteed to run status and so you are free to proceed with your international flight booking and other travel arrangements.

The group will rendezvous at Santiago de Compostela airport at lunchtime on day 1 of the itinerary. This transfer is timed to meet the Ryan Air flight from London Stansted (currently arriving at approx 1900). We will transfer from here to the accommodation in Sarria (approx 1hr 30mins). If your flight schedule does not mean that you are able to catch this transfer then you will need to make your own way to Sarria. Private transfers are also available please contact KE for prices.

At the end of the holiday there will be a group transfer to the airport arriving there at approximately 1930. For anyone departing earlier or later, private transfers can be arranged at extra cost or a taxi can be taken.

Land Only clients must let us know their flight details. Full joining instructions together with contact details of the first night's accommodation and an emergency number are provided with your booking confirmation.

In the small towns of Sarria, Portomarin, Palas de Rei, Melide and Arzua we stay in comfortable family run hotels and guesthouses. In Rua we stay in a more rural property but has all the flavour and charm of Spain. In Santiago we stay in a comfortable hotel in the old town. All accommodation is en-suite and is based on twin sharing. If you are travelling by yourself you will be paired up with another single client of the same sex. A single room supplements is available for an additional cost. Additional nights in Santiago de Compostela are available, please contact us for a quote. For single supplement costs please refer to the dates and prices page of the holiday on our website.

View the gallery below for images of the style of accommodation used

Breakfasts at the hotels that we use are 'continental' in style, with tea and coffee, orange juice and bread/toast, fruit, jam, honey, cheese and meats. Packed lunches are provided and will be sandwiches and some fruit. Evening meals are usually taken at our overnight accommodation and will usually be a set meal with vegetarian and meat options. It is normally 2 courses. You may wish to bring along a few of your favourite energy snacks from home for the walking days.

All meals except 1 dinner are included. A packed lunch will be provided for each day and you will need to allow space in your daypack for this.

We estimate that €100-150 will be sufficient to cover all personal expenses including the not included meal and some beverages. This should also allow you to pay tips to the local staff. We recommend that you carry your travel money in the form of Euros since there will be not be many opportunities to change it once you arrive in Sarria. ATM's are available in Santiago de Compostela at the end of the trek. If you are intending to buy considerable quantities of soft drinks or beer, or expensive souvenirs you should budget accordingly.

The holiday is led by an experienced English-speaking local guide. There will also be a driver who will transfer the luggage from each accommodation.

Tipping is the accepted way of saying ‘thank you’ to you trekking leader and local team. Tipping is entirely voluntary and should be dependent on good service. We advise you to tip as a group.

We ask you to restrict your luggage to a single main bag and a small daypack. There is no weight restriction as such other than that imposed by your international carrier but you will find travelling easier with lighter luggage. We recognise that for some of our holidays and for some of our travellers, the KE Trek Bag (see below) may not provide the best solution when packing for your trip. A bag with fitted wheels or a holdall with more than one compartment and more than one access zip can, in some circumstances, be more appropriate. We have no problem if you choose to use an alternative bag.

KE Trek Bag / Free Gift

All KE clients will receive a FREE KE trek bag.  These have been specially made to stand up to the rigours of adventure travel.  Your KE bag will be posted to you when your trip is guaranteed to run or on receipt of your booking if the trip is already guaranteed.  If you have travelled with us before and already have a KE trek bag you can select an alternative free gift in the booking process.

A passport with 3 months remaining validity is required. Passport holders from the UK, USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, or any EU countries do not require a visa. Other nationalities should check with the respective consulate in their own country.

Whilst we keep our information up to date, you should be advised that visa requirements can change. It is recommended that you contact the relevant commission in case of recent amendments.

The following checklist should help you with your packing. As a general rule, you should always try to keep the weight of your equipment to a minimum.

You must bring the following items:

  • Hiking boots
  • Socks
  • Trekking trousers / pants
  • Waterproof overtrousers / rainpants
  • Underwear
  • Baselayer shirts
  • T-shirts and/or casual shirts
  • Fleece jacket or warm jumper
  • Lightweight windproof/waterproof jacket
  • Lightweight thermal gloves
  • Sunhat
  • Warm hat
  • Eyewear - sunglasses
  • Daypack c. 30 litres / 1800 cubic inches
  • Headtorch / headlamp with spare bulb and batteries
  • Sun protection (including for lips)
  • Water bottles 1 Litre / 2 pint (x2)
  • Washbag and toiletries
  • Small padlock (to lock your KE trek bag)
  • Antibacterial handwash
  • Basic First Aid Kit including: antiseptic cream, throat lozenges, diarrhoea treatment (Imodium), painkillers, plasters and blister treatment, Insect repellent, and re-hydration salts (Dioralite)

The following items are optional:

  • Trainers or sandals
  • Gaiters
  • Shorts
  • Trekking poles
  • Spare laces
  • Insect repellant – (DEET)
  • Camera, media, batteries


  • For this holiday you may find it easier to handle your kit bag in a wheeled luggage frame for your trek bag or to pack your things into your own wheeled luggage.

We recommend you check if you require an adaptor for your electrical items at:

Know before you go

As a reputable tour operator, KE supports the British Foreign & Commonwealth Offices ‘Know before you go’ campaign to enable British citizens to prepare for their journeys overseas, and we recommend that all KE travellers take a look at the FCO Travel Advice for their chosen destination on the official FCO website: North Americans can also check out the U.S. Department of State website: for essential travel advice and tips.

KE treat the safety and security of all clients as the most important aspect of any trip we organise. We would not run any trip that we did not consider reasonably safe.  Should the FCO advise against travel for any reason, we will contact everyone booked to travel to discuss the situation.  We receive regular updates direct from the FCO and are in constant touch with our contacts on the ground.  If you have any questions about government travel advice, please call our office.

It makes a lot of sense to spend some time before coming on any active holiday getting some additional exercise. The fitter you are, after all, the more enjoyable you will find the experience. While regular walking is the best preparation, any regular exercise (jogging, cycling, swimming etc.) is good for developing cardio-vascular fitness. Before setting off we recommend that you make time to fit in several 5 – 6 hour walks in hilly country.

The temperatures that we can expect to encounter during the day will vary according to what time of year you travel. In the Spring and Autumn temperatures will be cooler than mid-summer and temperatures can range from 18 to 30 degrees Centigrade. This is a lush part of Spain, and the reason is that rain is likely at any time of year!

A Pilgrim's guide to the Camino de Santiago. John Brierley. A practical & mystical manual for the modern day pilgrim. Camino Francs: St-Jean-Pied-de-Port Santiago de Compostela.

Spain: The Way of St James 50K Topographic Survey Maps

Camino de Santiago from the Pyrenees to Santiago de Compostela on double-sided topographic maps at 1:50,000 from the Spanish civilian survey organization, overprinted with the route and sights, plus information of accommodation and other facilities, route profiles, etc. For the full route that we walk you would require stages 27 - 32

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