Camino - message from a fellow pilgrim

The Caminho along the dyke to Santarém

The Portuguese way from Alvaiázere to Santarém I was so excited to finally take a turn away from the railroad tracks today! So even though it was only 7.40 AM on a Sunday and very foggy again, I was in good spirits. I crossed a river and turned left on an ancient Roman road. There…

Camino rural road

How my boring day on the camino got more interesting

An unexpected conversation to start my day After freshening up I went down the square winding staircase of the hostel in Vila Franca de Xira. I’d had the 4-bed dorm to myself that night and had slept like a baby. They’d told me there was breakfast in the morning, so I went to check it…

Vila Franca de Xira public market

Leaving Lisbon as a pilgrim

The first stretch on the Camino Portuguese is about 36 km long. It’s a big distance when you’re only just starting the walk, so I decided to split it up into manageable sections. It was the right decision, not just for my body, but also for my mind. The initial approx. 50 km of the…

A weekend in Coimbra, an underrated Portuguese gem

How I ended up spending a long weekend in Coimbra The pandemic grew into the second wave in Europe while I was traveling in Portugal. In early November there was a long weekend due to a public holiday and the Portuguese government put some measures in place to prevent the spread of COVID. Therefore the…

Fishermen's trail - hill in Luz

My final steps on the Fishermen’s trail

In 16,5 km from Burgau to Lagos I knew I had a short last day, but for some reason I raced through it. From the moment I left Burgau I joined other walkers, some walking their dog, others going out for a run or a stroll. It seemed like I was walking through the outskirts…

Fishermen's trail - Praia do Zavial

From wild coast to tourist towns

Following the coast from Sagres to Burgau “Difficult” says the rating of today’s walk on the Rota Vicentina website. Great. I hadn’t slept well at all because of a terrible stomach pain. I decided to just get out of bed, take a painkiller and get the day started. I was certain I wouldn’t be able…

Fishermen's trail - coastal view

The most South Western point of Europe: Cape St. Vincent

On the fishermen’s trail from Vila do Bispo to Sagres I was walking on a dirt road and noticed an extraordinary number of snails surrounding me. They were everywhere; on the plants, on poles of power lines, on fences and rocks. Occasionally a car drove by, slowing down so they wouldn’t leave me in a…

Santarem - square of the main cathedral

Santarém: a little gem on the Camino

Santarém is a small city on the Tagus river about an hour’s drive North of Lisbon. The town has been around for hundreds of years, but has sadly lost its former glory. It lies on a hill in the middle of a plain with the river running through. It’s surrounded by agriculture and lots of…

Fishermen's trail - Bordeira beach

My favorite day on the Fishermen’s trail

The Fishermen’s trail from Carrapateira to Vila do Bispo Well… I always say I want to be healthier. In practice this doesn’t really happen. But at least I’ve got the exercise covered, especially the day I walked from Carrapateira to Vila do Bispo. Somehow I managed to turn 16 km into 27 km! And no,…