Day 32, Portomarin to Palas de Rei

An interesting day… Much of the scenery was a lot more familiar to us all… For Dan and I it could have been the hills of Northumberland, for Lisa, Bavaria… Familiar sites that did not dazzle us because of their familiarity, yet there would be the odd thing that would awaken our senses to the fact that we are in northern Spain!  But let me begin at the beginning…

 We started our journey today at 6:40 with a climb down out of Portomarin, but over the bridge and on up the hill to leaving the valley and quiet lake behind.


Up up up we climbed ( remember the dreaded downhill yesterday??? Well, right back up it… Only using a different path)


Once at the top, we followed paths and roads and paths again through more rich farmland and some more industrial sized farms (chicken and cattle) than we had seen before… Jocelyn spoke of cows and flies in this area… We’re a little too early for the flies of summer, but where there wasn’t cows grazing, they had spread fresh manure on all the newly cut hay fields so there was no escaping the pervasive odor of these ruminants!

Another day without wild poppies, but there were still some impressive wild flowers none the less… Beautiful wild foxgloves, and the broom flower bushes were almost as big as trees ( must be from the added fertilizer!!!)


While most of the walkways were either beside farmland or through quaint villages, we also walked along sone parts that were more like an enchanted forest!


It was an interesting day for Dan… Instead of chatting with us ladies, we all met up with our friend Alan on the trail, and the two of them struck up quite a conversation on all sorts of things… I think a refreshing change for Dan who could talk about military history, American civil war and other such stuff with someone else who has a deep passion and experience with these subjects.

Lisa and I had a wonderful day chatting about all sorts of things…. Including how much we missed our dear friends Sandra and Judith!  We hope you are both well, and we look forward to seeing you in Santiago!

I didn’t carry my big pack today, only a little 5 lb day pack… Much lighter on my feet.  I also took several breaks as much to rest my feet as to savour the experience.

 With only 3 sleeps left till we arrive in Santiago, there is a great excitement about arriving, together with a sense of sadness at seeing this part of our Camino journey end.  I must remember the words that the priest in St Jean Pied de Port told us… That the Camino does not end in Santiago, but that it should be carried with us back to our home countries and our everyday lives.

After walking 25 km today and doing vertical climbs totaling 450 m, we were ready for our Albergue.  We decided to treat ourselves to a private room, and we’re delighted to find this …. With our own private bath , real… Not camping towels, and sheets… Not sleeping bags!

(ok… So it was 22.50€ pp instead of 10€pp, but after 8 days, I was ready for a little privacy!)   Lisa is just in the next room with 6 beds, so will be easy to coordinate for an early start tomorrow!

We are now sitting just 68 km from Santiago!  Hard not to countdown and plan the finally steps!  We’ve noticed as we walk around Palas de Rei that there is a whole new crop of sore feet and blisters popping up … Mostly on the newbies (Sarria and just before)… Interesting that those people will be home well before their blisters have healed… We’ll just be dealing with long term ligament and tendon damage!!!

Nobody, but nobody can rock remnants of clean clothes while waiting for laundry to dry like Lisa!!! Everyone in Spain will soon be wearing this outfit in a week!!!!

Lisa rocks with fashion because she eats sooo healthy!  Dan and I on the other hand have opted for a pilgrim meal… One of the best, with soup for a starter, grilled octopus for our main (a Galician specialty), wine, water and dessert ( tarta de Santiago) all for €9 per person…


Delish!!! Now, hopefully we are fueled for another day!  On to Santiago… Did I say 3 more sleeps??? As we were leaving, 30-60 10ish years old were noisily checking into our Albergue… Maybe only 2, we might be a little short on sleep tonight!  Will keep you posted!

Categories: Camino De Santiago


  1. I can’t believe you are only 3 sleeps away from Santiago!!! We are all so proud of you back home. Ps – that first lake pic looked almost like Molly’s Gut at first glance!


  2. WOW! Only 3 more sleeps! Hard to believe you are nearing the end of your journey. We will miss your beautiful posts! I hope you will make a book with all the beautiful images you have taken on this journey. Here’s to a good rest and healthy feet! Blessings.


  3. I too will miss the daily writings. I’m so glad you are sharing this experience. Enjoy these final miles.


  4. I had left you a reply via my iPhone as we were at the Blue Jays game yesterday when your post came through (Jays won) but it seems that the post did not go through. Can’t even remember the gist of what I said except that the end is truly at hand and by the time you read this it will be one day less to go. Cheers G&G


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