The French Way: From Ponferrada to Santiago- Self-guided bike tour

Cycle the last 3200 km of the French Camino the minimum to get your Compostela by bike

460.00 €

French Route by bike: It crosses the north of Spain beginning from Castile and Leon  This itinerary covers the last 200 km of the Way,the minimum to get your Compostela by bike

-ITINERARY -

1 st day :  Arrival in PONFERRADA
2nd day: PONFERRADA- CEBREIRO (50 km - difficulty 3/3)
3rd day: O CEBREIRO - PORTOMARIN (62 km - difficulty 2/3)
4th day: PORTOMARIN - ARZUA (53 Km - difficulty 2/3)
5th day: ARZUA - SANTIAGO DE COMPOSTELA (39 km - difficulty 1/3)
6th day: SANTIAGO DE COMPOSTELA

The Price Includes:
- 5 nights in handpicked hotels and inns, all with en-suite accommodation, on a bed and breakfast basis
- Luggage transfer from hotel to hotel
- Travel insurance
- Credencial (Pilgrim’s passport)
- Tips & maps.
- 7/24 telephone assistance  (English speaking)


The Price does not include:
- Lunches
- 27 gears disc bike rental from Ponferrada to Santiago: € 130
- 27 hybrid bike rental from Ponferrada to Santiago:€ 150
- 29 gears disc bike rental from Ponferrada to Santiago:€ 160
- E-bike rental from St. Jean to Santiago:€ 270
- Dinners supplement: € 160
- Single room supplement: € 130


DAILY DEPARTURES


DAY-TO-DAY ITINERARY

 

1st day :  Arrival in PONFERRADA.
You will stay at the Bierzo region, a sunken plain nestled within a ring of mountains.Ponferrada is the capital of this region. The town is famous also for its Templar Castle, that is well worth a visit.

2nd day: PONFERRADA- CEBREIRO (50 km - difficulty 3/3)
You will first cross the small village of Pieros to reach Villafranca del Bierzo, where you will be rewarded with a visit to the famous Puerta del Perdón (Door  Gate of Forgiveness) in the church of Saint James. The route moves onto the small village of Pereje and then Trabadelo, La Portela and Ambasmestas. Part of the route runs parallel to the road and brings the ascent of O Cebreiro. The Camino runs parallel to the road and then goes through the villages of Ruitelan and Las Herrerias. This is when the climb really begins, with a short but very difficult ascent. There are now only 150 kilometres to go before you reach Santiago.

3rd day: O CEBREIRO - PORTOMARIN (62 km - difficulty 2/3)
You are now in Galicia, and O Cebreiro offers us one of the most beautiful landscapes on the Way, as a place of great tradition and mysticism , with its emblematic Romanesque church of Santa María de O Cebreiro. Then you will start the climb towards the Alto de San Roque and later to the Alto de O Poio (1,335 m), which is the highest point in Galicia on the French Route, offering spectacular views. After crossing the Alto do Poio, the descent to the hamlet of Triacastela begins.  From Triacastela, there are two ways to reach Sarria, via San XiI or via Samos, with its beautiful Benedictine monastery. We suggest our cycling pilgrims the second alternative. After you arrive in Sarria , the main town between Ponferrada and Santiago de Compostela. The village of Barbadelo has a beautiful Romanesque church that is worth a visit. When you arrive in Portomarin, you can chill out at one of the numerous outdoor cafés in the main square.

4th day: PORTOMARIN - ARZUA (53 Km - difficulty 2/3)
The day starts by crossing over the Belesar dam footbridge, followed by a gradual climb ending in the village of Ligonde. This stage runs mainly along andaderos (paths), next to the road, or in some cases along paved trails. There are many signs indicating that we are on a pilgrim route, including the famous "cruceiros" (crucifixes). Check out the Cruceiro of Lameiros and the Monastery of Our Saviour of Vilar de Donas (2 km detour off the Camino).
On this stage, you will move into the province of Corunna, where you will find expanses of eucalyptus and pine trees and numerous medieval bridges, such as those in Leboreiro and Furelos, as well as one of the most idyllic locations on the Camino in Ribadiso do Baixo near Arzua. Melide, which is famous for its octopus, is an obligatory stop for pilgrims and lovers of good food, whilst Arzua is famous for its designation of origin cheese

5th day: ARZUA - SANTIAGO DE COMPOSTELA (39 km - difficulty 1/3)
Today’s route is a nice and easy routeover gentle slopes through woodland, alternating with stretches near the road. Don't miss the beautiful sculpture of Saint James the Pilgrim in the Church of the same name in Boente.  This is alos the last stage on your Camino de Santiago. The proximity of your goal will bring mixed feelings. On one hand, you will be eager to reach the desired end of the journey, yet on the downside, the feeling that comes to every pilgrim is that the journey is over. A stage of anxiety and joy, where distance does not matter, because you are “already there”. The route today is flat, except for the climb to San Marcos, from Lavacolla, passing Monte do Gozo and down to Santiago de Compostela. The entire city of Santiago de Compostela is magical, but especially its Cathedral, which deserves a special visit.

6th day: SANTIAGO DE COMPOSTELA
After breakfast, go to exchange your pilgrim’s passport, if you haven’t already done it. Alternatively, we suggest you visit the cathedral and the surrounding areas or attend a pilgrim mass.



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