Camino Finisterre and Muxía

Camino Arrow 87 – 119 km –  3 or 4 stages

Fisterra was the end of the earth for the Romans. It is located at the Costa da Morte (Coast of Death and land of ancestral legends and past shipwrecks) and is a region that all those visiting Galicia must see. A lot of the pilgrims arriving at Santiago, actually continue their walk adventure to the end of the earth – to km 0.

Finisterre – the end of the world. Actually, it’s not the western limit of Europe, because that’s Cabo da Roca in Portugal, but the Romans didn’t know that, so since old times people have considered it to be the ‘Finis Terrae’, Land’s End – the door to the other world… as the Romans believed when they witnessed the sun sinking into the Atlantic Ocean. A symbol of the renewal of life, watching the sun set you will be reborn – reason why the pilgrims reach the end, watch the sun set, and burn their clothes. We wonder whether they would buy first new clothes or walk back naked. I guess the earlier pilgrims would be naked indeed cause they did travel with only the clothes they were wearing + a walking stick (and they sure didn’t carry 3 pairs of undies in their big comfy backpack full of modern gadgets…).

In the tab ‘Stages’ you will find the stages as shared on the Eroski site. We found them to be very accurate on the lengths. They also have very complete and nicely written narratives on each part, however, the narratives are in Spanish. If you want to read (also very nice) descriptions of each part in English you can use the interactive map above from elcaminosantiago.com. Just click on the symbol in the upper right corner: open map symbol. It will open up the interactive map in Google Maps and you’ll be able to zoom in and click on any way mark. This will open up a small window where you can read the narratives created by elcaminosantiago.com. Great resource!

If daily stages of more than 15/20 km are simply not your cup of tea, just look at the itinerary in each stage and choose your daily endpoints. You can use the name of those locations to search for a place to stay (see tab ‘Where to stay’). In addition, please remember: most people do not walk the French Way in one ‘holiday’. They simply take one or a couple of stages each time they have some time off. Take it easy – not everyone needs to walk 800 km to discover their true self…

In the tab ‘Where to start’ you will find information on the most common (and less common) places to start, including some information on how to get there.

Stage 1 Santiago de Compostela – Negreira

21 km – 8 albergues

Km 0: Santiago de Compostela (All services)

Km 2,3: Sarela da Baixo

Km 8,8: Alto do Vento (Bar)

Km 10,2: Lombao: (Albergue)

Km 11,6: Augapesada (Bar-Shop)

Km 15: Trasmonte (Bar)

Km 17: Ponte Maceira (Bar)

Km 20,2: A Chancela (Albergues)

Km 21: Negreira (All services)

Camino de Finisterra Stage 1

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Stage 2 Negreira – Olveiroa

33,4 km – 8 albergues

Km 0: Negreira (All services)

Km 4,6: Camiño Real

Km 8,2: A Pena

Km 12,7: Vilaserío (Albergues, Bar)

Km 21,5: Santa Mariña (Albergue, Bar)

Km 24,4: Vilar do Castro

Km 27,9: Abeleiroas (Alternative route available here of ~2 km to A Picota, bigger village with all services. It is possible to continue the way from there without returning to Abeleiroas)

Km 30: San Cristovo de Corzón

Km 31,6: Ponte Olveira (Albergue-Bar)

Km 33,4: Olveiroa (Albergues, Bars)

Camino de Finisterra Stage 2

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Stage 3a first to Fisterra: Olveiroa – Fisterra

34,9 km – 19 albergues

Km 0: Olveiroa (Albergues, Bars)

Km 3,7: Logoso (Albergue-Shop, Bar)

Km 6: Here you decide whether you want to walk directly to Finisterre, or first go to Muxía.

Km 19,5: Cee (All services)

Km 21: Corcubión (All services)

Km 21,8: Vilar (Albergue)

Km 25,7: Sardiñeiro (Bars, Shop)

Km 28,8: Calcoba (Bar)

Km 31,7: Fisterra (All services)

Km 34,9: Faro de Fisterra – enjoy your view and burn some clothes

DSC_4443

Camino de Finisterra Stage 3a

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Stage 3b first to Muxía: Olveiroa – Muxía

32,5 km – 5 albergues

Km 0: Olveiroa (Albergues, Bars)

Km 3,7: Logoso (Albergue-Shop, Bar)

Km 6: Here you decide whether you want to walk directly to Finisterre, or first go to Muxía.

Km 8,7: As Carizas

Km 10,5: Dumbría: (All services)

Km 13,5: Trasufre

Km 16: Senande (Bar, Shop)

Km 21,3: Quintans (Bar, Shop)

Km 23,6: Vilar de Sobremonte

Km 26,8: Os Muiños (Bar, Shop, Pharmacy)

Km 32,5: Muxía: (All services)

Camino de Finisterra Stage 3b

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Stage 4 Fisterra – Muxía & Muxía – Fisterra

Whether you first went to Fisterra, or first to Muxía, you’ll want to visit both of them; you don’t want to miss out either, really…

29,3 km – 5 albergues

Km 0: Fisterra (All services)

Km 1,7: San Martiño de Duio

Km 9,7: Padris

Km 13,6: Lires (Inns, Bar, Shop)

Km 20: Morquintián

Km 29,3: Muxía (All services)

The ‘End’ for the die-hard Pilgrims, where they visit the Sanctuary of ‘A Virxe da Barca’ (Virgin of the Boat’) which stands on a rocky ridge above the surf. In times of heavy weather the waves crash on the walls of the church. To most of you Muxía does not sound familiar probably, but the news of November 2002 when the oil tanker ‘Prestige’ leaked about 70.000 gallons of oil into the Atlantic, causing a major environmental and economic disaster, will probably ring a bell… It happened along the coast part of Muxía, devastating completely the local economy. Despite the extensive cleaning projects that did an amazing job, we were still able to see black spots that the oil left on some of the rocks when we were there in 2014.

Muxía

Camino de Finisterra Stage 5

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Booking.com

OUR PRIMARY SOURCE: BOOKING.COM

We always use booking.com. There are good things and less good things to say about this site, but the downsides are related to their very broad customer population (you get a lot of hostels in the results that are no way within walking distance. You can apply some filtering based on amount of km from the city center however.

There is one big advantage for us: the map on their site. Once you entered the name of the village (or nearest bigger city) and hit search you’ll get an overview of (lots of!) places to stay. If you scroll a bit down, you’ll see a little map. Click on it, and it will open up a bigger and interactive map with all the locations. Just look near where you are (don’t forget to zoom in to see more locations!), review the info, chose a place to stay and the best part: book it online and you’ll be sure to have a place to stay that night.

We didn’t book ahead (only when we were nearing Santiago as it was getting very busy in all albergues so we knew the hostels would get full soon too). However, it was nice to pull up the app of booking.com during breakfast and estimating where we would end up that day and to have some alternative plan B in case our first choice were to be fully booked.

They also have a filter you can apply to search for e.g. only inns, or… rural houses.We like to get comfortable once in a while…

Here’s an impression of their map for a search on ‘Arzúa’:

Booking.com results for Arzúa on the French Way

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Google Maps

Occasionally, booking.com will not have many hostels near you because there are of course lots of small hostels that are not yet on booking.com. This seems to be the case with the example location we chose: Arzúa.

In this situation, we visit googlemaps.com, type a search for ‘hostels in [name of location]’ – Google will suggest immediately a ‘hostels near xxx’. Hit search and you’ll get the results.

Here’s an impression of their map for a search on ‘Arzúa’:

GoogleMaps results for Arzúa on the French Way

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Turgalicia

Once you are in Galicia, the best way to find places to stay is turgalicia.es (English version).

They are the official tourist information site by the local government (Junta de Galicia, in Gallego ‘Xunta de Galicia’). Obviously, it’s their duty to provide this information and being listed on that site is important and free for hostel owners.

This is how their site looks. In the right menu bar you should click ‘Municipalities’ and check the ones you need to search: for the Camino Francés that might be Lugo or La Coruña, where that route runs through. Once checked off the boxes, hit ‘accept’ in the municipality window and search in the same right menu.

use of turgalicia english site

Once you get the results page, hit the button ‘Map’ in the left upper corner menu.

Here’s an impression on their map search for places to stay in Arzúa – it not only gives an additional 10+ places to stay (you will need to zoom in) but it also indicates very well what type of lodging it is (rural houses are the nice green ones) and in the menu above the map you will find many more interesting things (things to see, things to do, etc). Needless to say you can click on each hit and get more information about the hostel.

Turgalicia results for Arzúa on the French Way

This is as far as we want to go with lists of albergues. If you really want a list to print-out, we can recommend you to visit the site of Eroski consumer, they also have pdf’s available, although like I said, the complete narratives are in Spanish. Here’s the direct link to the albergues on the Camino Finisterre.

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The End of the World

For this one it’s not so much where to start on the trail but more about in which direction to go.

There are a lot of pilgrims that simply continue to Finisterre once arrived in Santiago, and continue to Muxía once arrived in Finisterre. You can also do it the other way around and walk first to Muxía.

For those that don’t want to miss out on the Finisterre experience but don’t want to walk there is always the possibility of taking the bus. There are also more than enough tour operators in Santiago that offer one-day excursions to the end of the world. These are more expensive but include a guide and usually some additional sight-seeing you would probably not have on your own!

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