This Camino walk has been specifically designed for Australians who want to experience the famous Camino track with limited time. On this 12 day Pack Free walk, we follow the popular pilgrim route of the Way of St James from the French town of St Jean Pied de Port in the Pyrenees to the end of the camino at Santiago de Compostela in the Spanish province of Galicia. This tour consists of a 5 day highlights walk from St Jean de Pied de Port across Spain to Sarria plus 7 days walking the last 100kms of the route so you can receive the pilgrim certificate – the Compostela. Following in the footsteps of pilgrims over the past 1000 years, we will walk through the Pyrenees mountains, picturesque towns, pretty forests, farmlands and rustic villages. We have hand-picked each hotel along the journey to ensure you will stay in the best accommodation available in each town, where you will enjoy local produce and wines, as well as warm hospitality. Each day is flexible allowing our guests to opt-out of any day’s walking and travel with our host guide to explore the towns.
Pack Free Walking Holiday
This walk is designed as a Pack Free walking allowing our guests to enjoy the landscapes they walk, without the burden of carrying a heavy pack. After all, walks should be enjoyed not endured. Each day our guests will walk with a small day pack big enough to carry your lunch, water and camera and your bags will be transported to your accommodation each day.
The best hand-picked hotels in each region
In each region we have walked we have handpicked the best accommodation in each area to ensure we provide a superb experience for our guests. From staying in at the Pamplona Catedral Hotel, a 4 star restored Medieval convent in the heart of the old city to the Palacio de Burgos, a 16th century Palace. In Arzua, we have a feature stay at the elegant Pazo de Brandesco Country Club a 14th century Spanish mansion. Whilst our last evening we spend at the exclusive Parador Hotel, these grand hotels offer the utmost in comfort and luxury as well as a superior dining experience.
Walk the Highlights
Traditionally this whole walk takes between 30 and 35 days to complete involving long days of 23-27 kilometres per day. Our walks has been designed to take you to the best sections of the trail, walking comfortable distances each day and ensuring you won’t miss out on the highlights in a 12 day experience. You can walk a maximum of 184kms on our walk or enjoy shorter walking options, alternatively you have the choice to opt out of any day’s walk and spend time enjoying the quaint villages and towns along the way.
Superb Guides and Support
Guides are essential in delivering the ultimate walking experience. You’ll be accompanied by a local Spanish guide who has a passion and enthusiasm for the area and a second host guide one of our experienced Senior Guides from Australia who will accompany you for the entire trip ensuring we deliver a world-class walk. We don’t outsource our operations, all tours are created and run by us, with staff on hand in Portugal and Spain to offer all the support you require.
Fabulous meals featuring local produce
When you are travelling in another country, discovering the local cuisine is one of the delights of travelling. All our meals feature fresh local produce and wines from each region. In Pamplona enjoy dinner in the hotels’ luxury restaurant with its impressive vaulted ceilings. During your walk enjoy a feature dinner at the Parador Santiago de Compostela, you’ll enjoy fine a la carte dining accompanied by local wines in the grand vault restaurant.
Sometimes we understand circumstances can change your day. The weather may be hot, your leg’s are tired or maybe you just would prefer less walking. On each day we offer a shorter walk alternative, or if you want to take a break from walking you can enjoy a free day to explore the main town or city at your own pace.
All tours are small and intimate with a maximum group size of 10 people. However, if you have a bigger group please contact us for details.
Guests will need to organise their own flights into Biarritz airport (4kms from Bayonne) in France to meet the group. Direct flights operate throughout the day from Paris to Biarritz, France (1 hour 20 min flight).
Meet our representative in Bayonne at 12 midday in the foyer of the Mercure Bayonne Centre Le Grand Hôtel, from here we transfer (1 hour drive) to Saint-Jean-Pied-de-Port, the capital of the historical Basque province in the Pyrenees . On arriving in the town you will be transferred directly to your hotel, the Les Pyrenees Hotel, an old coach inn where you can check in to your room. The rest of the afternoon is yours to explore this quaint walled town at your leisure. The town of Saint-Jean-Pied-de-Port is located at the base of the Pyrenean Mountains and the name “Pied-de-Port” actually means “foot pass.” Enjoy time to stroll along the cobbled streets of this mountain town, with its quaint arts and craft shops meandering down the hill. Tonight join the rest of your group (and those completing our French Camino) for dinner in the Michelin star restaurant specialising in traditional Basque Food which is accompanied with regional French wines.
Note this walk can be added to our 8 day Camino walk to create a longer journey across Spain or our 8 day French camino to create a French & Spain Camino experience.
Track notes: A strenuous uphill walk is rewarded with stunning views in all directions.
Enjoy breakfast before departing our hotel. We farewell St Saint-Jean-Pied-de-Port as we are transferred up the mountain to Refuge Auberge d’Orisson at 770m altitude where we start our walk. The scenery today is magnificent as our walks crosses three mountain saddles and meanders towards the French and Spanish border offering impressive views along the way of the Pyrenees. We walk into the historic village of Roncevaux (or Roncesvalles), high in the Pyrenees. This town is rich in history from battles between French Napoleonic troops and Anglo-Portuguese forces in the 1800s to the defeat of Charlemagne by local tribes. From here we transfer to the lively town of Pamplona (1 hour transfer). The city of Pamplona is most famous for the daring ‘Running of the Bulls’ spectacle where hundreds of people run in front of the bulls down a narrow stretch of the old town and into the bullring. Our accommodation for the night is at the Pamplona Catedral Hotel, set in a Medieval convent, this beautiful hotel has been transformed into a boutique 4-star hotel. After you settle in you can stroll around the old town with the lively Plaza del Castillo close by. Tonight enjoy a superb dinner featuring local produce and regional wines.
For those after an easier option today, start a little later than the rest of the group and walk from Croix to Roncevaux 10kms.
Track notes: Track: A steep climb rewarded with views followed by a steep descent through villages.
After an early breakfast, we leave Pamplona and enjoy a short transfer to Cizur Menor (15 mins). We walk from the town of Cizur Menor, as soon entering the town we’ll spot the Church of San Miguel Archangel which once formed part of a monastery that pilgrims stayed en route to Santiago. Our track ascends to Sierra del Perdon from here you will appreciate magnificent views northwards to the Pyrenees and Pamplona. We pass the life-size installation called the ‘Monument to the Pilgrims Way’ depicting a group of pilgrims from different eras crossing the trail. From here we pass through various ancient villages before reaching the medieval town of Puente la Reina set on the river bank with its charming stone bridges and enjoy some refreshments in a local establishment. Afterwards, we transfer to the town of Burgos (2hrs). Burgos is famous for its intact medieval architecture such as its impressive gothic cathedral is a veritable jewel and full of monuments worthy of exploration and appreciation and was home to the warlord El Cid. Tonight we spend the evening at Palacio de Burgos, once a 16th century Palace, this historic building has been tastefully restored with modern interiors. it is ideally located in the centre of the old town. Tonight enjoy a wonderful dinner featuring regional cuisine and wines.
For those after a shorter option, today walk from Cizur Menor to Uterga 11.8kms and afterwards be transferred for some free time in the afternoon in Puente la Reina before meeting the group. Alternatively, travel with our logistic guide and enjoy a free day to explore the town of Puente la Reina.
Track Notes: Track: Some gentle hills with sections of trees.
After breakfast, we leave Burgos and are transferred to Hospital fr Orbigo (2 hours). Today’s walk is between the villages of Hospital de Orbigo and Astorga. We start our walking crossing the magnificent medieval sandstone bridge which leads into Hospital de Orbigo, and from here we’ll pass the holm oak and chestnut tree covered Colomba mountain and cross the Tuerto river to Astorga. This ancient city which still has some impressive Roman walls surrounding it as well as an eclectic mix of Gothic, Baroque and Renaissance architecture. Tonight we spend the night at the stylish Hotel Spa Vía de la Plata Astorga, ideally located in the heart of the old town. Enjoy a superb dinner in a nearby restaurant tonight including local produce and wines.
For those after an easier option, today walk from Santibanez de Valdeiglesias to Astorga 11.5kms.
Track Notes: Track: A high altitude start (1500m) means mostly downhill on natural pathways.
After breakfast, we leave Astorga and transfer to Cruz de Ferro (3o mins). The walk today is in the mountains and we begin at Cruz de Ferro, which has panoramic views over the plains below. Continue to the picturesque village of Molinaseca before strolling into Villafranca del Bierzo, nestling at the foot of the mountains. Afterwards, we arrive at Sarria. After a short stroll around the town we head to our accommodation at the charming Casa Caxiguero a 12th century typical traditional Spanish farmhouse. Enjoy the warm hospitality and quaint atmosphere with wonderful home-cooked meals featuring organic food produced in the garden all accompanied with local wines.
After a delicious breakfast, we farewell our hosts and start our walk from the village of Barbadelo to the town Portomarin. We follow country lanes through rural setting and shady wooded forests. We pass through many quaint hamlets and villages including Ferreiros with it’s small church. The path ascends to Pena dos Corvos where you can enjoy magnificent views before descending into the Rio Mino valley. We cross the bridge and walk towards the historic town of Portomarin. The original town is now underwater due to a dam built in the 1960s to create a reservoir. A decision was made to move the most important of the old historic building to the new town higher on the hill. Painstakingly buildings were moved brick by brick and reconstructed. When the dam is low remnants of the old town can still be seen on the waterfront. Guests will love this quaint town with its cobbled-stone streets and homes decorated with colourful flower boxes. Our accommodation tonight is at the modern Vistalegre Spa Hotel. Here you can relax in the spa room and refresh after a day’s walking, or explore the town. Tonight we will dine in a local restaurant featuring fresh regional produce and wines.
EASIER OPTION: For those after an easier option today walk 9.5kms to Ferreiros.
After breakfast we farewell Portomarin and head towards the town of Palas de Rei. Our day starts with a steady uphill climb taking in views of pretty Portomarin. The route takes us through the brooms, with their magnificent fragrance. Our path then follows the road to Gonzar and past Castromaior, known for its Romanesque church. Along the path you will pass charming hamlets and calvaries. Over this stage, we will pass through Ventas de Naron, over the gentle Sierra de Ligonde, then downhill through Ligonde to see the church dedicated to the apostle St James. Emperor Charles V stayed here in the modest village of Ligonde in 1520. Our guide will meet us today towards the end of the walk for our short transfer (15 mins) to our accommodation for the next 2 nights at Casa Camino, a charming Spanish Country House set on the hill overlooking the valley. Tonight enjoy a home-cooked dinner with local wines.
EASIER OPTION: For those after an easier option today walk 13kms to Ventas de Naron.
Enjoy breakfast before we transfer back to the trail (15 mins). Today’s walk takes us from Palais de Rei to Melide. We traverse the land encountering pretty woodlands of chestnut and oak. We pass hamlets and small towns of Casanova, O Coto and Leboreiro and travel through various valleys. We finally arrive in the 10th-century village of Melide with its historic churches and building. From here we will be met and transferred back to our accommodation at Casa Camino (20mins). Tonight enjoy wine tasting of some regional wines before enjoying a relaxing dinner at this charming location.
After breakfast, we farewell our hosts and transfer back to the trail at Melide. Today’s walk takes us from the town of Melide to Arzúa. The terrain becomes much easier today as we walk through the villages of Carballal, San Xuilan do Camino with its cute 12th Century church and the village of Lebereiro. We wind our walk through woodlands of oaks, pine and Eucalyptus trees. We will stop at one of the local villages along the way for lunch. Crossing over the River Seco on the Magdalena Bridge we will reach Furelos and continue on to Arzúa, in the province of La Coruña, famous for its local cheese. From here we are transferred to our accommodation for the next two nights at the nearby Pazo De Brandesco (10 min transfer). This unique 17th Century grand mansion has been in the same family for the past 400 years. You’ll be amazed by its family collections that decorate the house. When we arrive enjoy a tour with the owner of this unique property (subject to him being at the residence when we arrive). Enjoy time to wander the grounds and visit their small chapel or swim in the pool. Tonight dine in the grand dining room enjoying a three-course meal served with local wine.
After a good night’s rest, we enjoy breakfast in the grand dining room. Afterwards, we transfer back to Arzúa (10 mins) to recommence our walk to Rua. Today’s walk is mostly flat and follows country trails through pretty forests of towering oak trees and Eucalyptus trees. As we most previous day we discover an array of traditional hamlets and small villages along the way. Along the way see the Baroque fountain of healing waters. Our walk brings you to the small town of Rua which has a population of only 50 people. The walk today is lovely, as you pass large green fields and rural landscapes. After our walk, we are transferred back (20 mins) to our accommodation at Pazo De Brandesco where you can relax and enjoy a refreshing swim after another day walking. Enjoy dinner in the dining served with local wines and chatting about the day’s adventures.
EASIER OPTION: For those after an easier option today walk 11kms to Salceda.
Today is the final leg of our camino walk as we make our way to our destination at Santiago de Compostela. After breakfast we transfer back to the trail (20 mins) to start our walk. Today you will pass many ancient sites including monuments, chapels and bridges, all have a story to tell. Follow country lanes and forest paths through increasingly populated countryside. We walk through Lavacolla village, a place where pilgrims traditionally stopped to wash in the river and purify themselves before entering the city of Santiago. We reach Monte del Gozo (Mount of Joy) where we will see impressive views of the impressive Cathedral of Santiago. We walk into Santiago though the cobbled streets of the Old Quarter and feel the elation as we reach the Plaza del Obradoiro, one of the most beautiful and renowned squares in Spain and the end of our walk. Enjoy the views in front of you of the magnificent Cathedral of Santiago. To the left of the cathedral in the square is our impressive accommodation for the night at the Parador (also knowns as the Hostal dos Reis Catolicos.) Considered the oldest hotel in the world, in 1499 this building was a Royal hospital to house the walkers who were on the camino pilgrimage to Santiago. These days this accommodation is now an elegant hotel with the best location in the city offering a truly unique and exclusive place to stay. Tonight we join the pilgrims service at 6.30pm before enjoying a celebratory dinner in the grand vault restaurant at the Parador Hotel.
After breakfast your tour concludes. enjoy free time to explore Santiago de Compostela at leisure. Additional nights can be booked at the Parador hotel if requested.
Guests will need to organise flights from Santiago to Barcelona or Madrid to connect with international flights. The airport is a short 15 minute taxi from the city.
We run regular scheduled tours from every year from April to September. Dates are listed below however availability changes by the hour – to see real-time availability click on the monthly calendar at the bottom of the page and select the month you require. We will also consider opening up a new departure date if we have enough demand. Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Check below to see if your preferred departure has special savings. Conditions apply see pricing page.
(Please note if you are booking 3 months or less before departure – we will need to confirm accommodation with our suppliers is still available and an alternative of similar standard may be offered instead).
|Departure dates||Availability||Specials / Notes|
|NEXT SEASON 2021:|
|25 April 2021||Available||Super Earlybird Savings|
|22 May 2021||Available||Super Earlybird Savings|
|18 June 2021||Available||Super Earlybird Savings|
|23 August 2021||Available||Super Earlybird Savings|
|19 September 2021||Available||Super Earlybird Savings|
Date of your choice is available for groups of 8 people or more. Subject to availability. Free Group T’shirts also available – see details.
Please contact us for more details on (02) 9975 4553 or email: email@example.com
Great Savings on this seasons or next season's departures.
Spot Special Discount of $150 per person are available on some departures when you book and pay in full at time of booking. See our departure dates page for applicable dates. Life's An Adventure Past Passenger save $100 per person extra. (see conditions below).
Book for next season May 2021 to September 2021 and take advantage of Super Earlybird Savings of $300 per person (Past Passengers Save $400 per person). Book and pay in full at time of booking to receive this special offer. Super Earlybird end 31 August 2020.
Private groups of 8-10 people can save $50 per person off Normal Prices when they book a departure. Choose the date of your choice subject to availability. Or $50 off current season sales if you book and pay in full at time of booking. Free Group T'shirts also available enquire for details.
This Season 2020: Spot Special Price
$ 5845 /p
Prices for those doing their first walk with us.
Prices in Australian Dollars
SPOT SPECIAL PRICES
This Season 2020: Past Passenger Price
$ 5695 /p
For guests that have travelled with us before
Prices in Australian Dollars
Special prices for passengers who have travelled with us before.
PAST PASSENGER SPOT SPECIALS SAVE $150 per person
PAST PASSENGER NORMAL PRICES
Private Groups from
$ 5695 /p
Your own Private Group of 10-12 guests.
Prices in Australian Dollars
PAST PASSENGER GROUPS
BOOK NOW FOR NEXT SEASON 2021
$ 5695 /p
Super Earlybirds Out Now
Prices in Australian Dollars
SUPER EARLYBIRD PRICE
Singles wanting their own room. Add $1298
Subject to availability at time of booking.
PAST PASSENGER DISCOUNT: Those who have travelled with Life’s An Adventure previously, receive a past passenger discount of $100. In order to receive this discount please email us for your special “promo code” to use when booking. In your email, you should outline what Life’s An Adventure tour you have done with us in the past so we can cross-check.
EARLYBIRD CANCELLATIONS: Cancellations are not permitted for Earlybird Deals or Spot Specials, however, transfers to another date are permitted 13 weeks or more prior to departure. We advise taking out travel insurance, in case unexpected circumstances prior to the trip, prevent you from joining this tour. Early bird or Spot Special discounts cannot be used in conjunction with another offer. To receive these special discounts, full payment must be made at the time of initial booking.
We advise taking our Travel Insurance to cover items such as cancellation of tour due to minimum numbers not met, or adverse weather conditions, injury, evacuation, delayed flights, illness, etc. We have organised through NIB Insurance for you to purchase travel insurance directly with them – please click here for details. Travel Insurance only available for Australian residents
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