For those who want to go over The Last 100 Kms from Sarria, we would like to recommend some places of cultural interest to you and other tourist destinations we think they require a stop on the Camino.
- STAGE SARRIA - PORTOMARIN (22,4 Kms) -
In Barbadelo and Ferreiros we can visit two Romanesque churches, the Church of St. James (Barbadelo) and the Church of Saint Mary (Ferreiros).
Portomarín is a beautiful village bathed by the Belesar reservoir, in which the old town is submerged (which can be seen in summer due to the decreased river flow). The town is divided into two districts: St. Nicholas and St. Peter. You should not miss the visit to the Chapel of Our Lady of Snows, as well as to the magnificent church-fortress of St. Nicholas, erected by the monks-knights of the order of St. John of Jerusalem in the 12th century. The church was built by a workshop of disciples of Master Mateo. Portomarín produces one of the most recognised moonshines in Galicia and an annual party is celebrated in honour of it.
The Romanesque façade of the Church of St. Peter, the Pazo de Berbetoros (Galician country house- (17th century) and the Pazo del Conde da Maza (16th century) are other of the many attractions that you can find in this beautiful town.
- STAGE PORTOMARIN - PALAS DE REI (25 Kms) -
In Gonzar, we can visit the most important monument of this locality: Saint Mary Parish.
In Castromaior, there is the small Church of Saint Mary, built in a Romanesque style, quite simple and rough but very well preserved. In its interior you can contemplate a Romanesque carving of the Virgin and an altarpiece (16th century).
In Ventas de Narón, we can see the Chapel of the Magdalene.
The Church of St. James, in Ligonde, neoclassical style, conserves the Romanesque façade of its predecessor. Just before entering the town, you come across the Cruceiro of Lameiros (1670), where the four sides of the base represent the calvary of the death of Jesus (hammer, nails, thorns and skulls), while on the cross you can see a relief that represents motherhood or life.
- STAGE PALAS DE REI- MELIDE - ARZÚA (28.8 Kms) -
In San Xulián do Camiño we find the Parish Church of San Xulián, Romanesque temple built in the 11th century.
In Leboreiro we can see the Romanesque Church of Saint Mary, where the tympanum of the façade and the murals of the sixteenth century stand out very impressively.
In Disicabo we highlight the small medieval bridge of the Magdalene.
At the entrance of Furelos we find a splendid medieval bridge with four eyes. Next to it, there is the Parish Church of St. John.
Next to Palas de Rei there is the Romanesque Vilar de Donas Church, former Priory of the Order of St. James. It was built in the 13th century. The church has a Latin cross and it has three vaulted apses and a cruise with ribbed vault. In the interior we can see several tombs of important knights of the Order of Santiago, as well as some well preserved frescoes. It is one of the best known examples of Galician Romanesque linked to the Camino.
The Castle of Pambre, located in Ulloa, is one of the best examples of medieval military architecture that exists in Galicia. It was built at the end of the 14th century by D. Gonzalo Ozores de Ulloa. Located on the top of a hill, overlooking the river Pambre gorge, it is covered by vegetation and trees. It is surrounded by a defensive wall of about 5 m. of thickness. It is accessed by a small semicircular door. It has a square plan with four towers in the corners and the tower keep in the center. Inside we find the Chapel of St. Peter.
In Melide, of course, we can not miss the taste of its famous octopus, in any of its famous pulperías.
It also has a magnificent ethnographic museum, Terra de Melide, recently built and unique in the area. It is worth mentioning that you can find the Church of Sancti Spiritus and the Romanesque Church of Saint Mary.
In Sobrado dos Monxes, in lands of Melide, is located the Monastery of Santa Maria de Sobrado dos Monxes (Sobrado Abbey). It is one of the main monasteries of medieval origin of the province of A Coruña and of all Galicia.
It is believed that it dates from the tenth century, since several writings have been found where it is mentioned. It has undergone numerous reforms from the sixteenth to the eighteenth century. To this day the church is preserved in good condition, as well as part of its monastic dependencies thanks to the work of the Benedictine monks who inhabit it. The church dates back to the 17th century, in Baroque style. It stands out the spectacular façade with two slender towers. All its interior is worth admiring. The Monastery preserves three cloisters. In July 2015 it was named a World Heritage Site by UNESCO as a unique building directly linked to the Way of St James.
The Pre-Romanesque church of San Antoniño de Toques is located in a spectacular spot in the middle of a waterfall that runs along the side of the church. The church in Pre-Romanesque style consists of a nave. On the triumphal arch there is a Romanesque carving of a Calvary dating from the 12th century.
In Ribadixo do Baixo, after passing the bridge of medieval origin, you find the hospital of Ribadixo, last historic place that remained open to the service of the pilgrim. In the recreational area of Ribadixo we can stop on the way to refresh our feet in the river.
In Arzúa, it stands out the Church of St. James with the Gothic Chapel of the Magdalene, belonging to a missing hospital. Next to a oak grove we also highlight the Chapel of A Mota.
And about 5 Kms outside the Camino, we stand out the Pazo de Brandeso, where the famous writer Valle-Inclan located part of his novel Sonata of Autumn. The Manor is privately owned and can not be visited. It is a stately building with a chapel on its main façade.
- STAGE ARZÚA - PEDROUZO (19,1 Kms) -
At this stage, we can highlight the Parish Church of San Verisimo, in the town of Ferreiros.
In Santa Irene we can visit the Chapel of the Saint that gives name to the locality. This is a shrine dedicated to this Portuguese Holy Martyr. We also mention a Baroque fountain that it is said that has healing properties for the skin.
We can not pass up the opportunity to taste the magnificent cheese of tetilla of Arzúa. Since 1989 this cheese is crafted handmade from natural-whole milk. It receives the denomination of Galician Product of Quality. It is produced in all concellos (city councils) of the Arzúa-Ulloa region: Arzúa, Curtis, Melide, O Pino, Santiso, Sobrado dos Monxes, Toques, Touro and Vilasantar (in the province of A Coruña) and Friol, Monterroso and Palas de Rei (in the province of Lugo).
- STAGE PEDROUZO - SANTIAGO DE COMPOSTELA (20 Kms) -
Before we arrive in Santiago de Compostela, about 4 km approximately, the Monte do Gozo offers an incredible panoramic view of the city.
In Santiago de Compostela we find the most important monument of our entire route, the Cathedral of Santiago, dedicated to the Apostle Santiago.
It was consecrated in 1128 and is a good example of a pilgrimage church.
The church was built in Romanesque style, with subsequent Renaissance and Baroque elements of the 18th century. It has a Romanesque Latin cross floor plant and it has on three naves divided by semicircular arches, tribune, transept and ambulatory.
The most astonishing component of the building is the Portico de la Gloria, the best example of the Spanish Romanesque built by Master Mateo.
As an ancestral tradition, every pilgrim who wants this desire and can go to it, attends the mass at 12 and 19.30 in the Cathedral. Inside the temple, with a little luck, you will be able to contemplate in action the magnificent botafumeiro.
Another tradition is the embrace of the image of the apostle Santiago and the visit to his crypt.
It is a must see the museum of the Cathedral, as well as the visit to the roofs of the building.
Other important tourist destinations are:
The Monastery of San Martín Pinario that is located facing the Plaza de la Azabachería.
The Façade of the Parador de los Reyes Católicos, in the Plaza del Obradoiro, which was founded as a hospital for pilgrims.
The whole historical center is spectacular, it transport us without realising to the Medieval times. In it, you will find the Mercado de Abastos de Santiago (supplies market), Galician Pavilion in San Lázaro neighborhood, Pantheon of illustrious Gallegos (contiguous to the museum), Chapel of As Animas, Praza de Cervantes, Museum of the House of Troy, etc.
Now we recommend the discovery of these incredible places by yourself and tell us what you thought about this amazing experience.
Come on pilgrims!!