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Description

Duration

12 Days / 12 Nights

Level

3

Location

Spain

Average / Day

66 Km – 41 Miles

Minimum

2

When

All year round

Cycling the Way from Pyrenees Map

The Way or “Camino de Santiago” is, more than the world-famous Catholic pilgrimage, an excellent opportunity to make an unforgettable route that crosses Spain almost entirely from East to West. During more than 780 kilometers of route and 9500 meters of positive ascent, the experience of doing El Camino is hardly comparable to other cycling routes. Throughout the tour dozens of other pilgrims are known, traditional and friendly hostels, restaurants and inns are discovered and all surrounded by a sense of sincere brotherhood. All the experience accumulated by the people of the area in the centuries of El Camino (it starts in the Middle Ages) can be seen in the good organisation and quality of services that welcome pilgrims throughout the tour.

 

Roncesvalles: Historically Roncesvalles has been one of the most important places for crossing from France to Spain, therefore it is very well known by all the pilgrims who are making the way from different parts of Europe. It is also one of the favorite spots for pilgrims from all over the world to start their journey, as in the case of this tour, Roncesvalles await almost 800 kilometers of Camino to reach the goal of Santiago de Compostela.

Pamplona: It is the largest city that we will find during the Camino from Roncesvalles. With its almost 200,000 inhabitants, it is the capital of Navarre and one of the most important cities in the north of Spain. Famous worldwide for the San Fermín festivities (July 7 to 14), throughout the year you can follow the path that the bulls make through the historic center of the city until they reach the bullring.

Puente la Reina: Still in Navarre we find this village with less than 3000 inhabitants but with a great importance in the Camino since the two main routes that come from France converge here. It has an impressive Romanesque bridge built in the eleventh century to allow pilgrims to cross safely to the other side of the river.

Logroño: Just after leaving Navarre and entering La Rioja we find its capital, Logroño. It is a must to visit the old town where Laurel Street is famous for its innumerable tapas places. It is also worth mentioning its imposing churches, one of them is the Church of San Bartolomé which is the oldest church in the city (12th century) and the Cathedral of Logroño where the painting of The Crucifixion of Michelangelo Buonarroti can be seen.

Santo Domingo de la Calzada: At the end of the third stage we find another of the villages that owe their history to the Camino, it was founded around a bridge, hospital and shelter all built for the pilgrims by its founder Domingo García, who has become one of the best-known and revered saints of the Camino. There is a typical sweet called ahorcaditos that has the shape of a vieira (scallop) in homage to the shell of the Camino de Santiago.

Burgos: In the next stage we arrive at Burgos, in the area of Castilla y León, famous among other things for its cathedral built in the 13th century, perhaps the most representative building in the city. It’s also remarkable the castle, built for the first time during the Reconquista (reconquest) in the 9th century, it was expanded and modernised over the years due to its defensive importance. At the gastronomic plane they are widely recognized for their morcilla (blood sausage) and cheese, although the best known dish is the olla podrida (rotten pot).

León: Another important city in Castilla y León. Founded by the Roman armies during the 1st century it was having more and more importance over the years. It is a key point of the Camino de Santiago and its Cathedral of Santa María de Regla, example of Gothic style built in the 13th century, is a mandatory visit. The Basilica of San Isidoro is one of the most important examples of Romanesque architecture in Spain, both for its architectural value and for the paintings in the inside.

Astorga: Still in Castilla y León we find Astorga. Founded by the Romans there can be visited the remains of the initial constructions of that time, such as the baths or the sewers. Also of great importance are the cathedral and the episcopal palace that was commissioned to be built by Antoni Gaudí, although he only did the first 2 floors. The mantecadas are the most recognized dessert along with the beef dishes.

O Cebreiro: It is the first Galician village we find on the Camino and its history is very closely linked with the apostle Santiago. After the discovery of the apostle’s tomb an inn was founded to give asylum to the pilgrims who made the journey to visit it and it was growing at the same time the devotion for the apostle did. It ended being the city it is nowadays.

Sarria: Located about 100 kilometers away from Santiago de Compostela, this town in the province of Lugo is well known by all pilgrims since it is the closest to Santiago from where you can start the Camino getting the pilgrim certificate, the Compostela.

Santiago de Compostela: It is the capital of Galícia and one of the most important pilgrimage cities in the world. Throughout the year its streets receive thousands of pilgrims who travel the Camino from innumerable points all over the world. The cathedral, dedicated to the Apostle Santiago, is the final point of the pilgrimage and therefore a must visit. It is also interesting to walk through the old part of the city that surrounds the cathedral and walk through its small streets and squares.

Inicio del camino de santiago en bicicleta

Day 1. Roncesvalles to Pamplona

46.4 km – 585 m
28.8 miles – 1919 feet

The Camino starts in Roncesvalles towards Pamplona. Altough the final ascent of this stage is about -500 meters, during all the day the way has lots of climbs and descents, the route is a legbreaking. The first 20 kilometers are done on the national road, from Erro the route follows a secondary way that lead to Pamplona.

Camino de Santiago en bicicleta cruzando los pueblos de Navarra

Day 2. Pamplona to Torres del Río

76 km – 1175 m
47.2 miles – 3855 feet

We continue in Navarra and this means that the profile of the stage is similar to the previous day’s one. The route of this day has also many climbs and descents that make it the hardest of the Camino, in fact it’s the one that has more accumulated climb of the whole tour. The first kilometers are made by secondary roads to avoid areas where the route is too technical, from Puente la Reyna the route is made by forest tracks.

Camino de Santiago cruzando pueblos en bicicleta

Day 3. Torres del Río to Santo Domingo

71 km – 982 m
44 miles – 3221 feet

This route similar to the previous ones in therms of hardness, the profile is still slightly broken but with less elevation gain and distance than the previous one. On the first kilometers the track guides to a road but in the second part the track goes to secondary ways. In this second half of the route is where there is most of the elevation except for the last 5 km which are downhill.

Camino de Santiago en bicicleta antes de llegar a Burgos

Day 4. Santo Domingo to Burgos

70 km – 819 m
43.5 miles – 2687 feet

We are leaving behind the hardest stages and start to find satges with less elevation. Also the profiles are softer. During this stage we move from La Rioja to Castilla y León and while we’re doing so the landscape change from the vineyards to agricultural fields. During the day we find a climb that rises slowly until half of the stage, from there it’s almost all downhill until Burgos.

El simbolo de la concha nos guia durante todo el camino

Day 5. Burgos to Carrión de los Condes

84 km – 639 m
52 miles – 2096 feet

This one is the second longest stage of the tour (84km). Even so the elevation is still decreasing and there are only 639 meters of accumulated climb. All the climbs are soft and gentle except for one in the half of the route (km 42) which has some steeper slopes, but the effort is worth it to enjoy the views from the top.

Uno de los pasos más miticos del camino de santiago es el puente sobre el rio orbigo

Day 6. Carrión de los Condes to El Ranero

59 km – 352 m
36 miles – 1154 feet

FThis is the stage with less elevation of all, only 352 meters. During its almost 60 kilometers it runs between secondary roads and tracks surrounded by fields that, depending on the time of year, vary their colors between brown, green and yellow, offering a nice contrast on the horizon with the light blue of the sky.

Camino de Santiago en bici con subidas largas antes de Astorga

Day 7. El Ranero to Astorga

89 km – 582 m
56 miles – 1909 feet

This is the longest stage, very similar to the previous one, with 580 meters of elevation and very smooth climbs during the whole route. Most of the route runs parallel to the national road and in its more complicated parts by the same road, since it is the best option with the bicycle with saddlebags.

Camino de Santiago en bicicleta con la estatua de Astorga

Day 8. Astorga to Ponferrada

56 km – 806 m
35 miles – 2644 feet

The 800 meters of positive elevation on this stage are covered during the first half of the route, from there the road is all downhill to Ponferrada. The highest point of today’s stage is also the highest point of the entire tour (1500m). During the day the landscape is changing again and the fields are being replaced for wooded and more humid environments. As the landscape changes, so does the apperance of the villages that we’re crossing, which look more like mountain villages.

Camino de Santiago en el puente de Villafranca del Bierzo

Day 9. Ponferrada to O'Cebreiro

57 km – 1167 m
35 miles – 3828 feet

Stage more or less flat until the 42nd kilometer where the climb starts. The ascent is done on a small road until the end of the stage in O Cebreiro. This is the first galician village we find just after entering in Galicia. At this point the surroundings are already typically galician and they’ll accompany us to our goal in Santiago de Compostela.

Camino de Santiago en bicicleta entrando en Galicia

Day 10. O'Cebreiro to Sarria

42 km – 477 m
26 miles – 1565 feet

This is the shortest route of all and the second one with less elevation. In addition, the route is mostly downhill, so this is an ideal day to recover strength for the last two stages of the Camino. As in Sarria starts the shortest route of the Camino to get the Compostela the number of pilgrims is always much higher, it is advisable to arrive early to ensure a good place in a hostel.

Camino de Santiago en bicicleta cerca de Sarria

Day 11. Sarria to Palas de Rei

49 km – 935 m
30 miles – 3067 feet

The stage runs through typical Galician landscapes, wooded and humid, where it can easily start to rain at any time. In return the nature offers us environments with very leafy vegetation and very pleasant to travel with the bicycle. Throughout the day we will find pilgrims who make the Camino either on foot, by bike or on horseback. The total elevation rises again to the double of the previous stages, but without steep slopes.

Ultimas indicaciones para llegar en bicicleta a Santiago

Day 12. Palas de Rei to Santiago de Compostela

71 km – 1040 m
44 miles – 3412 feet

Last stage of the Camino, arriving in Santiago de Compostela. On this stage the difficulty increases a bit and we’re facing more distance and elevation than on the previous. Even so the idea of reaching the end of the route and the large number of pilgrims can give a sensation of short stage. In front of the Cathedral it is time to take a photo that certifies the accomplishment of the feat and leave a good memory of this incredible experience.

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OPTIONAL EXTRAS PER PERSON

  • 12 days Hybrid Bike Rental: 180 €/person
  • 12 days Electric Bike Rental: coming soon…
  • Set of back panniers: coming soon…
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