Friday, 9 December 2016

A quick visit to Santiago de Compostela

The next day was all sunny and hot, which proved that the decision about driving to La Coruna and not stopping in Oviedo was a good one. We woke up in the morning, packed our stuff back into our car and soon we were back on the road. The plan was to get to Portugal already that day. But not so fast. First, we wanted to see a little bit more of the western parts of Spain.

We were close enough to Santiago de Compostela, a town known for being the destination point for most pilgrims on either of the Camino de Santiago routes. Yes, there isn't a single route that you have to take. But all of them will take you to Santiago de Compostela.

We got to the town easy enough. But once we were there, we couldn't see any signs that would lead us anywhere close to the Cathedral. We were driving very slowly looking for any hints. Roadsigns. Anything. But saw nothing. Until...

Somewhere, across a roundabout from us, we saw people walking with backpacks. First thought - we should follow them, cause they know the way. They must be pilgrims. When we got closer, we saw the sticks and the shells. We knew it was the right decision to make. We quickly parked the card and decided to continue on foot. It was much easier that way, at least it was easier to find the right path. Cause it was unbearably hot and thus difficult to walk. Not much shade either.

We finally saw the first signs. The big ones, easily spotted even from a moving vehicles. But these were rare. What actually took us to the pilgrims centre were little bronze (was it?) shells in the pavement.

We were finally there. We reached the part of the city we wanted to reach. There were many more people there. From many different countries. Most of them with backpacks. Real pilgrims, not really tourists like ourselves. I hope that one day, I will also be able to walk the route. To visit Santiago de Compostela as a pilgrim. But it's not the time for me, yet. Frankly speaking, I don't feel ready to do that yet.

Before we went into the Cathedral, we visited a tiny church as if in the back, behind the hotel. An empty one. With its own charm.

Then we went to the Cathedral. Oh, it's a huge one. I didn't take any pictures inside (just one or two outside) cause there was a mass and I didn't want to interrupt. You can walk through the Cathedral during the service, though.

Of course, the outsides of the Cathedral had to be under renovation, cause it's me who's visiting ;) Like with Florence, Paris, and many more places ;)

That was a quick visit. Shoop, shoop and we were done. Back in the car, ready to keep going. Cause we still had a bit more to see that day. Before we got to Portugal. But we ere not in a hurry either. There simply wasn't much more to do there. At least for us.


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