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On this one week guided walking holiday you’ll trek along the ancient pilgrimage route of the Camino de Santiago hear Gregorian chants in hidden-away monasteries and may even clap eyes on the Holy Grail. Comfy accommodation, great food and a knowledgeable tour guide are all part of the package too.
One thousand years ago the Camino de Santiago was a different scene than it is today. Scores of pilgrims trekked its paths to the tomb of St James in Santiago de Compostela, but now, aside from high summer, this part of Spain remains well under the tourist radar. It’s in the heart of the Pyrenees so it goes without saying, the scenery is spectacular – and because you’ve got a central base in Berdún – you’ve got great access to some of the area’s most striking settings. What’s more, your guides knows this part of Spain like the back of their hands, so you’ll be heading down little-trodden walkways and picnicking in spots only the locals know about.
One of the best ways to get to know a place is to get out and walk around – and that’s exactly what you’ll be doing on this holiday. Days are spent trekking in some of Spain’s most striking countryside – the area around the Camino de Santiago. You’ll see limestone gorges carved deep into the Pyrenees, follow ancient pilgrimage routes and Roman roads, and enjoy picnic lunches in countryside that’s home to birds of prey and all manner of Alpine flowers. You’ll also see Spain’s first ever cathedral in Jaca, the Holy Grail at the San Juan de la Pena monastery, and stone circles and dolmens on your way through the Hecho Valley. But perhaps the most magical moment comes towards the end of the week – when Gregorian chants fill the air at the Leyre monastery.
You don’t need to be super-fit for this holiday, though you do need a certain amount of stamina as you’ll be walking between 15-25 kilometres a day. Most of the walks are downhill so it’s not too arduous. As it’s a group holiday and the minimum number per group is four people, it’s best if you like spending lots of time with other people – not only will you be walking during the day together, you’ll also be eating together in the evening.
The trip was very well organised, and the accommodation was excellent. What really makes a trip like this special is that you can walk off the beaten track and our guide Richard was very knowledeable so we learnt a lot about the local history,flora and fauna. Nothing was too much trouble for Richard or our hosts Peter and Melanie and that made the holiday really enjoyable. I would definitely recommend this trip.
Pat reviewing Walk the Camino de Santiago
I would be happy to recommend this holiday to anyone! Richard, the guide, was extremely knowledgeable and it was a delight to go walking with him, Snippets of information about the geology, history, architecture, flora and wildlife added extra interest to every walk we went on. The walks were well planned out in terms of the interests we had expressed and our walking ability. One member of the group was injured and Richard, along with our hosts at Casa Sarasa, made individual arrangements so that she could still join us at different stages of the walks. They also adapted a couple of days because of poor weather but managed this in such a way as to still provide excellent and varied walking experiences.
We stayed at Casa Sarasa which again exceeded our expectations. Peter and Melanie had exactly the right balance between treating us as friends in their home and customers. We could not have been more welcomed or better looked after. Our daily picnics were a triumph and different every day.
Organisationally everything went like clockwork; Richard and Peter made the planning look effortless a sure sign that in actual fact a lot of thought had gone into it!
I would score this holiday a 5 and we hope to book again. ( Probably 2012 as we have already booked a 2011 walking holiday through Tourdust) We would again want to stay at Casa Sarasa and have Richard as our tour guide, we would include some of the other activities on offer, canoeing, riding etc and we would go a bit later in May hoping for warmer weather!
Sian reviewing Walk the Camino de Santiago
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