Camino Primitivo
Camino Primitivo

Camino Primitivo

18 days

Dam views along the Camino Primitivo routeCamino Primitivo, Oviedo in SpainSantiago de Compostela in SpainCoastal views in Spain

Spend 18-days mesmerizing days walking the original way of Saint James

Experience a one-of-a-kind adventure packed with meaning and purpose on the 18-Day Self-Guided Camino Primitivo. The Pilgrims' Trail to Santiago de Compostela is one of Europe's great historical migrations and it all began with the Camino Primitivo! According to legend, the 9th century saw the bones of apostle St. James, murdered in Palestine, miraculously appear in a village of what is now Galicia. Word spread around the Christian world, reaching (among others) King Alfonso II of Asturias. He undertook the pilgrimage - journeying through dark woods and daunting mountains, from Oviedo via Lugo to Santiago – and invited fellow kings and noblemen to follow in his footsteps.

This original route which you’ll undertake became very popular in the early Middle Ages when pilgrims aimed to avoid areas south of the Cantabrian Range which was in constant dispute between the Christians and Moors.

Nowadays, the Camino Primitivo reveals an area of rural beauty where villages steeped in history have stood the test of time. You’ll follow ancient paths through gorgeous farmland where authentically friendly locals greet you. Near Lugo the Camino Primitivo joins the more popular French route, which you’ll then follow to Santiago, making the requisite stop at Monte del Gozo, a hilltop vista point that affords a pilgrim’s first glimpse of Santiago de Compostela. During this pilgrims’ route, you’ll stay in comfortable hotels and rural guesthouses and enjoy the luxury of luggage transport and private transfers.

Change your life with your very own pilgrimage on the Camino Primitivo. Book your spot today!

Highlights of the Camino Primitivo

Enjoy a multi-week odyssey as you walk the ancient trails of the original Way of St James on the Camino Primitivo.
Connect with nature and yourself in the vast green landscapes of the Asturian and Galician countryside.
Step back in time as you walk through historic villages steeped in legacy, discovering countless monasteries and Roman walls.
Savour the flavours of Northern Spain as you enjoy the delectable gastronomy of Asturias and Galicia.

Prices

From $1,425USD
18 days
Difficulty
Self-Guided
Hotels
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Camino Primitivo

Camino Primitivo Tour Itinerary

Day 1 Arrival in Oviedo

Today the adventure begins with your arrival in the historic city of Oviedo, the province of Asturias’ charming capital. Visit the Gothic Cathedral devoted to San Salvador here, an important Saint for pilgrims going to Santiago. Enjoy the lively atmosphere in the old town centre with plenty of cafés, restaurants, bodegas and cider houses, just around the corner from your comfortable city hotel.
Overnight Location: Hotel in Oviedo
Distance: None
Meals: Breakfast

Day 2 Walk through the Green Asturian Countryside to Sama de Grado

Rise ready for your first day of walking! Today’s journey begins as you follow the Jacobean copper shells through narrow lanes in the city centre, then out into the green Asturian countryside. Tarmac lanes and old footpaths take you past quiet villages, some of which still have pilgrims’ hostels and historic inns.

From Puerma you’ll continue along the main road, to Grado. And from there, a short transfer to your charming rural hotel in Sama de Grado.
Overnight Location: Hotel in Sama de Grado
Distance: 6,5 hrs, 23,5 km 250 m ascent, 375 m descent
Meals: Breakfast, dinner

Day 3 Country Lanes and Rolling Hills to Salas

The first part of the route from Grado to Salas follows narrow trails and country roads through hilly countryside directly to Cornellana Monastery. Founded in 1024, this centre was of great religious and political importance throughout the early history of the Christian kingdom in Asturias.

For the second part of today’s route, from Cornellana to Salas, you’ll take a few detours, as the motorway is still under construction here. Your hotel in Salas is located in the historical town centre, right next to the castle and museum, featuring Pre-Romanesque architecture.
Overnight Location: Hotel in Salas
Distance: 6 hrs, 21,4 km, 425 m ascent, 350 m descent
Meals: Breakfast, dinner

Day 4 Tranquil Woodlands to Tineo

After a short ascent through beautiful terrain in the fields outside Salas, you again follow the main road for about 5km before leaving it behind in La Espina. The next section on the way to Tineo takes you through quiet woodlands and fields, with very little tarmac, just quiet country tracks! In Tineo’s historical centre you will find your next accommodations.
Overnight Location: Hotel in Tineo
Distance: 6 hrs, 19,8 km, 575 m ascent, 300 m descent
Meals: Breakfast

Day 5 Walk to Campiello Via Obona

After a hearty breakfast in Tineo you will walk through woodlands to reach the peaceful setting at Obona, with its historic Monasterio de Santa María la Real. Then you continue on to Campiello and your next accommodation, a welcoming family-run establishment.
Overnight Location: Hotel in Campiello
Distance: 6 hrs, 18,2 km, 500 m ascent, 300 m descent
Meals: Breakfast, dinner

Day 6 Transfer to Borres and Walk to Berducedo

The taxi driver will take you to Borres this morning to begin your walk along the original high route, or “ruta de los hospitales”, crossing steep slopes to reach Puerto el Palo. Several pilgrims’ hospitals were built here centuries ago - on either side of the mountain pass - due to the extreme weather conditions in winter. You will enjoy superb views on your way up to the highest point, the pass called “Puerto El Palo”. From there you’ll continue for another 9.5km - mainly on the road - to reach your hostel in Berducedo.
Overnight Location: Hotel in Berducedo
Distance: 7-8,5 hrs, 18-22 km, 520 m ascent and 450 m descent OR 615 m ascent and 450 m descent
Meals: Breakfast, dinner

Day 7 Follow the Camino to Grandas de Salime

From the tiny village of Berducedo, the Camino first makes an ascent up to the windmills above La Mesa this morning, then does a steep descent down to beautiful Lake Salime. You’ll enjoy superb views for the first 5km, then the lovely shade of chestnut trees as you walk down to meet the road. The last 2.5km follows the tarmac road across the dam and up to your hotel in Grandas de Salime.
Overnight Location: Hotel in Grandas de Salime
Distance: 6 hrs, 15 km, 330 m ascent, 970 m descent
Meals: Breakfast, dinner

Day 8 Rest Day or Walk to Grandas de Salime or Castro

After your first week on the pilgrimage, you may wish to take a day off to rest and relax!

If you prefer to do a walk today, there are 2 lovely routes to choose from: a short walk to the village of Grandas de Salime, where you can visit the ethnographic museum or take a dive in the local swimming pool. Or a 5km section on the Camino, from Lake Grandas to Castro where you can visit Chao Sanmartin, an interesting archaeological site of Celtic and Roman origin. You can book a taxi transfer back to the hotel from either if you prefer not to walk back.
Overnight Location: Hotel in Grandas de Salime
Distance: 2,5 hrs, 5 km, 310 m ascent, 20 m descent
Meals: Breakfast, dinner

Day 9 Transfer to Castro and Walk to Fonsagrada – Welcome to Galicia

The taxi drops you off this morning at Castro to continue your pilgrims’ tour with a section which more or less follows the main road to Puerto El Acebo (1165m), the gateway to the province of Galicia. You walk mostly on the main road, taking frequent shortcuts, especially on the descent down into Galicia. At the end, there’s one more short ascent to reach the town of Fonsagrada, not a very pretty village but friendly in its own way, with all the major services a pilgrim requires!
Overnight Location: Hotel in Fonsagrada
Distance: 6 hrs, 20,5 km, 530 m ascent, 225 m descent
Meals: Breakfast

Day 10 Walk from Fonsagrada to Paradavella and Transfer to Fonsagrada

From Fonsagrada you’ll first descend to the village of Proba de Burón, to pick up the oldest Camino Primitivo trail, a high route across green pastures and fields of heather on the way to the ruins at Hospital de Montouto (another pilgrims’ hospital of ancient origin).

After an easy descent to Paradavella, a taxi drives you back to Fonsagrada, as there is no other suitable accommodation nearby.
Overnight Location: Hotel in Fonsagrada
Distance: 5 hrs, 14,5 km, 400 m ascent, 650 m descent
Meals: Breakfast

Day 11 Transfer to Paradavella and Walk to Castroverde

After a taxi transfer to Paradavella (or a bit further), today’s route mainly follows rural tracks through wooded areas and open fields, with some short sections on the main road. After O Cádavo, you walk through Villabade (interesting church) before finally reaching Castroverde.
Overnight Location: Hotel in Castroverde
Distance: 6 hrs, 20,3 km, 400 m ascent, 475 descent
Meals: Breakfast, dinner

Day 12 Walk the Galician Countryside to Lugo

Today, you’ll really get to enjoy the beauty of Galician countryside, as you walk on quiet tarmac lanes and dirt tracks from one tiny hamlet to the next, passing gorgeous examples of traditional architecture until you walk directly up to your modern hotel in the heart of Lugo’s historical centre, just 100m from the splendid Roman walls, a UNESCO World heritage site!
Overnight Location: Hotel in Lugo
Distance: 6 hrs, 22,2 km, 150 m ascent, 250 m descent
Meals: Breakfast

Day 13 Camino Crossroads on the Walk to Ferreira

From Lugo onward, several Caminos come together to join the main French Route (Camino Francés). Today you have a long walk to reach the next accommodation, situated in Ferreira. The first 20 kilometres until O Burgo are well paved but mainly uphill. But don't worry because it is quite easy to hire a taxi in Lugo to shorten this stage if you please.
Overnight Location: Hotel in Ferreira
Distance: Up to 8 hrs, 26.5 km, 200 m ascent/descent.
Meals: Breakfast, dinner

Day 14 Walk to Melide Via O Requián

Luckily, today's stage is not as long as yesterdays. However, the Camino starts and continues uphill until O Requián, and then there is another climb until Monte da Feira. Once there, the route will be a piece of cake until Melide.
Overnight Location: Hotel in Melide
Distance: 5 hrs, 20 km, 280 m ascent, 350 m descent
Meals: Breakfast

Day 15 Walk the Camino Francés to Arzúa

Today you begin walking directly from Melide. You have now joined the French Route, or Camino Francés, which is the most popular of all the Camino variants.

Suddenly, you find yourself among a multitude of pilgrims from all over the world, as you follow trails, country roads and footpaths parallel to the main road. Your accommodation for this evening is located just outside the village of Arzúa.
Overnight Location: Hotel in Arzúa
Distance: 4 hrs, 14 km, 150 m ascent, 200 m descent
Meals: Breakfast, dinner

Day 16 Walk from Arzúa to A Rua

This section of the Camino is one of the least interesting, as it basically parallels the main road, but there are lots of new friends to make along the way! The excitement shared with fellow pilgrims grows, combined with a weary feeling of having to soon face the end of your pilgrimage!
Overnight Location: Hotel in A Rua
Distance: 5 hrs, 19,4 km, 200 m ascent, 225 m descent
Meals: Breakfast, dinner

Day 17 Final Walk to Santiago de Compostela

The last section of your pilgrimage brings you back to modern life as you pass the regional airport, cross the highway, railway track and ring-road around Santiago. Nevertheless, it’s still easy to imagine the sheer joy ancient pilgrims felt when they caught a first glimpse of Santiago and the spires off in the distance. From Monte del Gozo, pilgrims historically make one last stop at the spring in Lavacolla, to wash face and feet before presenting themselves before the Saint at the Cathedral on Plaza del Obradoiro.
Overnight Location: Hotel in Santiago de Compostela
Distance: 5 hrs, 19,8 km, 175 m ascent/descent
Meals: Breakfast

Day 18 End of the Camino

After today's breakfast your Camino Primitivo comes to an end. Time to return home with all the experiences this pilgrimage has provided you and a storehouse of memories made!
Overnight Location: None
Distance: None
Meals: Breakfast

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Camino Primitivo Tour Price and Dates

This self-guided walking tour in Spain is always run as a private tour for your group only and the price per person depends on the room type chosen.

Prices below are per person:

Departures from April 18th to June 30th:

  • Price per solo traveller: $2,425 USD
  • Price per person staying in a single room: $2,225 USD
  • Price per person sharing a double/twin room: $1,625 USD
  • Price per person sharing a triple room: $1,425 USD

Departures from July 1st to 31st:

  • Price per solo traveller: $2,475 USD
  • Price per person staying in a single room: $2,275 USD
  • Price per person sharing a double/twin room: $1,650 USD
  • Price per person sharing a triple room: $1,450 USD

Departures from August 1st to 31st:

  • Price per solo traveller: $2,550 USD
  • Price per person staying in a single room: $2,350 USD
  • Price per person sharing a double/twin room: $1,650 USD
  • Price per person sharing a triple room: $1,450 USD

Departures from September 1st to October 23rd:

  • Price per solo traveller: $2,425 USD
  • Price per person staying in a single room: $2,225 USD
  • Price per person sharing a double/twin room: $1,625 USD
  • Price per person sharing a triple room: $1,425 USD
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Accommodation on Camino Primitivo Tour

A selection of different accommodations, ranging from traditional village hotels (2 nights), rural guesthouses (2 nights), charming and comfortable rural hotels (7 nights) to 3- and 4-star city hotels (5 nights), rooms with en-suite bathroom.

In some cases, the accommodation listed below may need to be substituted for other comparable accommodations.

Single Rooms and Solo Travelers
Standard rooms are double occupancy. You can pay a supplement to have a private room in a hotel where possible. Solo travellers may be required to pay a supplement.

Hotels on Standard Tour

Night 1-17

Accommodation along the Camino Primitivo Route

Hand-picked hotels and guesthouses that offer everything a pilgrim needs after a day on the Camino.

What’s Included in Camino Primitivo Tour?

Meals

17 breakfasts and 10 dinners are included.

Accommodations

Accommodations for 17 nights are included. Accommodations before the tour are not included but can be added as a supplement.

Transportation during the Tour

During this tour, you will be walking from one location to another, and all the luggage transfers are included. However, you will be responsible for any other transportation outside of the tour itinerary.

Also Included

  • Detailed route description and maps
  • 24-hour telephone assistance
  • Routes in digital format (.gpx) for GPS or mobile devices

Not included

  • Any personal transport
  • Meals, drinks, or snacks not previously mentioned
  • Guide services
  • Flights
  • Travel insurance
  • Tourist Tax
  • Personal expenses such as drinks, phone calls, tips, extra transfers, etc.

Optional Extras

  • Extra nights can be booked in every accommodation included in the trip (we recommend the rural hotels in Sama de Grado, Tineo, Castroverde, Palas del Rei and Arzúa)
  • Extra night in Santiago de Compostela

Frequently Asked Questions about Camino Primitivo

Explore the hidden corners of Europe by bike or on foot with S-Cape. Their self-guided trips have been hand-crafted by local experts to highlight every detail of your destination. S-Cape designs tours that allow you to explore without restrictive timetables and immerse yourself in the diverse culture and natural beauty of Europe at your own pace.

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Is this tour for me?

We rate this tour as a 3 / 5. You’ll be walking long distances of up to 26.5km daily for 18 consecutive days. However, you have an option to extend your tour by booking rest days.

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