The next letter on the “Towns Along the Way” series is “E”, as there are no towns starting with “D” (I dare you to look!). There aren’t too many so here goes…working towards Santiago.
Espinal is a typical Basque village and one of the first you will encounter after leaving Roncenvalles. At this point, you have 871km left before Santiago. It’s name in Basque is Aurizberri and on leaving the town you are faced with a climb to Alto Mezkiritz. While not many stop here, there are many accommodation options (www.gronze.com). I don’t remember much of this town as I had stopped in Burguette (the town previous), and was deep in conversation with new found Camino friends!.
We meet Estella (or to give it it’s full name Estella-Lizarra) 115km from St Jean Pied de Port. Estella is also part of Navarra and has a population of over 13,000 people. On entering the town, you cross the Picudo Bridge and are greeted with Church of San Pedro de la Rúa, a large Romanesque church. There are plenty of places to stay (www.gronze.com). I chose not to stay here in September 2014 however, preferring the small town of Ayegui a kilometre further on.
Espinosa del Camino (map)
And finally, Espinosa del Camino is located about 40km (or 2 days walk) from Burgos. It is in Castille y Leon and has a population of just over 30 people. It makes a living from the Camino with a number of cafes and albergues (www.gronze.com). It was in this town that I met a good Camino friend and had a cafe con leche, only to be told I walk too fast. And that was my first day!!