El Camino de Santiago

Camino Portugues

El Camino de Santiago

Camino Portugues

Caldas de Reis to Padron 14.2 miles

Apart from the Paradors I have stayed in various types of accommodation and last night's was a real gem. The receptionist spoke excellent English which I complimented her on. Apparently she was from New Jersey. It was an old town house immaculately restored and only a small number of rooms. The food was outstanding and I would love to go back. Another plus was that it was directly on the Camino and in 10 yards there was a friendly arrow and the Roman Bridge out of town. 

Off we go

Very soon I was back in the familiar territory of shaded lanes through the beautiful Galician countryside. But I had company! At one stage I counted 6 people in front of me but they really were dawdlers so very soon I had the way to myself.

Now you have seen a lot of photos like this but you have not seen anything like these.

What is it?
It's a 'horreos'

For some time, after my first visit to Galicia, I guessed they must be a family crypt as these structures  are very prevalent and especially in the rural areas there are not a lot of graveyards. I thought it somewhat morbid but they all seem to have a cross mounted on them so why not? I can now tell you that in fact they are something as mundane as a granary (not granny!) storage place. They are particular to this area and even iconic. 

As I neared the town of Padron the pilgrim vibe was evident. More cafes trying to lure in the thirsty traveller with special offers etc. There is a reason for this. Padron's history, or more likely legend,  claims it to be the place where St James' followers first landed with his remains. The stone which was used to tie up the boat is given pride of place in the large central church. I needed a stamp so I shushed Elvis and went in.

The 'Pedron'

After a wander round the town I decided to head for my hotel. It turned out not to be in Padron itself but further on in another place called Iria Flavia which sounded to me like the sort of settlement where people wore togas. The good news being that it was on the Camino and I would have a very short day tomorrow before arriving at my goal. (Sniffle)

I was encouraged by the waiter to try the local 'famous' speciality of Padron Peppers. Of course I had never heard of them but thought I should show willing and give them a go. Actually they are quite pleasant, if not sensational, and I have now discovered that they are served in some fine English restaurants and available for purchase from Waitrose!

I was expected