I made it to Santiago, the official end of the Camino! 455 miles walked, 45 miles to go to the ocean!
Day 33: I had planned on staying in albergues for the rest of the walk, but the last one I stayed in had some new additions to the Camino who were not as respectful as the people I had experienced so far. In the shared dormitory room of 20, there were a group of six guys in their 60s from Scotland who came in late, were really drunk and were turning the light on and off. So in the next town, Castañeda, I stayed in a lovely rural hostel with a private room and a bath.
This little town was not one of the stages in the popular Pilgrims guide, so I knew it would be less crowded. As I walked out of that town that morning, I didn’t see anyone else on the road for a while.
But nature was still keeping an eye on me 🙂
I only had that day and the next before I reached the official end of the Camino in Santiago de Compostela. I wanted to soak everything in and enjoy every step.
Day 34: Rain! We had had three really hot consecutive days that reached into the 90s, and then there was a big weather shift, and it was raining as I started my walk that morning. But not hard rain. It was misty and actually quite pleasant and it was nice to dig my jacket back out of my pack.
As I walked, I dug an apple out of my pack and made a new friend.
I did a long walk day that day so I could be sure to be in Santiago on June 4th to meet Rob.
I arrived around 5pm in Pedrouzo Arca. This was the last stage before Santiago. Before I had wanted to escape the crowds, but here I wanted to celebrate with other Pilgrims with one walking day left before the majority of them finished and went back to their various countries. So after showering and doing some laundry, I closed out the day laughing, drinking and eating with a fun and rowdy group of Pilgrims.
Day 35: June 4th, my arrival day for Santiago where the Camino de Santiago officially ends. I left late that day and walked without any hurry. The weather forecast said lots of rain, so I geared up in boot covers and rain jackets, but I ended up stripping it all back off pretty quickly. The ground was wet but the weather was perfect.
The walk was beautiful and bittersweet.
As Santiago got closer, there was definitely excitement in the air.
I reached the outskirts of town, but the Cathedral that holds the remains of Saint Santiago was still a 40 minute walk away, but I was getting close!
As I made my way through town, the clouds were looking a little ominous and it was raining off and on.
I arrived in the historic city center and saw the archway into the plaza the great Cathedral of Santiago sits on. The end of the Camino.
I had made it. Through blisters and rain and sleepless nights and meeting so many amazing people along the way, I had actually done it. 35 days on the Camino with only 2 rest days due to blisters. I was pretty darn happy.
There were lots of other Pilgrims the square who I knew and had walked with and we smiled and hugged. And then the evening ended even better with the arrival of my bestie, Rob!!
He gets one rest day and then tomorrow we hit the road and walk until our feet are in the ocean 🙂