I have returned from Santiago – first impressions!

So if you have been in contact with me on my other social media sites, you may have known that I have been to Santiago and I am back a week. I walked the Camino Portugués Coastal Route and enjoyed every moment. I left Porto on Easter Sunday and arrived into Santiago on the 20th of April. It was such a fun experience. Mentally, I have not completely checked back and it will take a while to do so. Physically, I have a few niggling aches and pains, but they will go away in time.

This is not the first time I have walked from Porto. I walked with my brother and my friend, Wallace, last year. However, walking alone is quite different and I wanted to give it another shot. I live by the sea and I love walking by the sea so these few days walking with the ocean by my left were just perfect. There were a few rainy days – but those were expected. However, all in all, I walked with the sun at my side and the waves in my ears.

The Camino Portugués Coastal Route starts in Porto and makes use of the lengthy boardwalks along the sandy beaches until Marinhas. It cuts inland and there was some beautiful scenery around the river at Castelo do Neiva. I returned to the coast at Viana do Castelo and there I stayed until I entered Galicia.

I will be writing about each of my days over the coming weeks so check back when you get a chance. My arrival in Santiago was over so soon and I just wish I had slowed down over the last few days. In Santiago, I caught up with the good people in Camino Companions and met pilgrims I had met throughout my 12 days.

Below are just a few impressions I noted on arriving in Santiago. I am sure there will be more that I will note when I am writing my daily journals, but this is a start:

  • I met a lot of pilgrims taking the Spiritual Variant after Pontevedra. One for the future
  • Huge respect for those pilgrims who walked from Lisbon – it’s a huge achievement. I will miss “the three amigos” who I got to know from Caminha.
  • The walk out of Porto is worthwhile and should not be missed.
  • I loved the sound of the ocean to my left everyday until I needed to switch inland.
  • I had two days of rain, I was incredibly lucky.

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