COASTAL CAMINO PORTUGUES FROM PORTO ITINERARY
DAY 1 – PORTO
Porto in Northern Portugal is an unmissable city: charming, relaxed and beautiful in equal measure. The history of Porto goes back 2000 years and the Romans gave it its current name: ‘Portus’, meaning port, testament to the importance of cultural and commercial and exchanges that took place between this region and across the seas.
Explore the many monuments in this UNESCO listed city, sample its many food delicacies and soak up the atmosphere in the lively Ribeira before embarking on your Camino journey. We highly recommend spending a couple of days in Porto before starting your Camino walk.
DAY 2 – WALKING FROM MATOSINHOS TO PÓVOA DE VARZIM – 29KMS
From Porto we recommend you take the Metro to Matosinhos (Mercado stop), on the coast, to avoid the outskirts of the city. Don’t forget to stamp your pilgrim passport, credencial, at the Cathedral before you leave so you have your first Camino stamp.
From Matosinhos to Póvoa de Varzim you will be walking on wooden walkways along the coast and passing many beaches; while enjoying wonderful views of the ocean. Before reaching Póvoa de Varzim, you will pass the lovely historic town of Vila do Conde.
The region is home to some of the best beaches in the North of Portugal so don’t forget your swimming gear, a swim in the ocean is fitting and refreshing end to a long walking day.
At 29kms, it is quite a long walking day but relatively easy for its flat terrain. It is also possible to stop for the night in Labruge or Angeiras to break this long walking day into two.
OPTIONAL BREAK STOP – LABRUGUE OR ANGEIRAS
DAY 3 – WALKING FROM POVOA DE VARZIM TO ESPOSENDE – 22KMS
From Povoa de Varzim to Esposende the Coastal Camino Portugues route continues hugging the shoreline with the Atlantic Ocean, your ever present companion.
As you reach Apulia, you are entering the Coastal Natural Park, Parque Natural do Litoral Norte; spot the wonderful windmills. Your stop for the night is the town of Esposende.
DAY 4 – WALKING FROM ESPOSENDE TO VIANA DO CASTELO – 24KMS
Leaving Esposende behind, we’ll continue our Camino journey along the Coastal Natural Park, Parque Natural do Litoral Norte, towards Viana do Castelo.
Explore the historic quarter in this heritage city starting from Praça da República in the heart of the city. Viana is rich in architectural treasures from Manueline, Renaissance and Baroque to Art Deco and contemporary architecture.
This impressive cultural heritage is in many cases linked to its trading past, as a city connected to the sea. For breathtaking panoramic views of Viana and the Atlantic Ocean, take the funicular to the Basílica de Santa Luzía.
DAY 5 – WALKING FROM VIANA DO CASTELO TO VILA PRAIA DE ÂNCORA – 19KMS
From Viana do Castelo, the Coastal Camino Portugues route gives pilgrims two options on their way to Vila Praia de Âncora.
There are two routes marked, both taking you to the same destination: the ‘costa’ route takes pilgrims inland along forest tracks with views of the coast below and it is really well marked; while the ‘litoral’ route follows the shoreline but markings can be more erratic.
In any case you will arrive at the coastal town of Vila Praia de Ancora, your stop for the night.
DAY 6 – WALKING FROM VILA PRAIA DE ANCORA TO A GUARDA – 13KMS
Today will be your last day walking in Portugal, as you will be walking from Vila Praia de Âncora along Moledo beach to Caminha, where you will take the ferry boat to A Guarda, in Galicia, across the estuary of the Minho River.
A Guarda is home to Galicia’s most spectacular celtic hillfort and Castro Roman settlement on the Monte de Santa Trega or Santa Tecla, dating back to 100BC. It is worth a visit if you have time.
Remember you will lose an hour as you cross to Spain which is one hour ahead of Portugal.
Ferry services start from 10am and finish at 7pm from Tuesday to Friday (from 11am on Saturday, Sunday). Please note there are no ferry crossings on Monday.
DAY 7 – WALKING FROM A GUARDA TO BAIONA – 30KMS
It is 30kms from the fishing village of A Guarda to Baiona, so it is quite a long walking stage. However, the terrain is quite flat and manageable. The Atlantic Ocean continues to be the pilgrim’s companion for the day, rewarding you with great views.
If you’d like to break it into two stages, we can arrange accommodation half way in the village of Oia, home to the 12th century Royal Monastery of Santa Maria.
Otherwise you will continue to the pretty seaside town of Baiona, with its cobbled historic quarter, promenade by the bay and iconic Monterreal Castle-fortress, which is today a luxury Parador hotel.
OPTIONAL BREAK STOP – In order to break this long walking stage into two, you can stay in the village of OIA.
RECOMMENDED – REST DAY IN BAIONA OR VIGO
If you take a rest day in Baiona and Vigo, we recommend taking a ferry to the Cies Islands, an authentic paradise off the coast of Galicia.
DAY 8 – WALKING FROM BAIONA TO VIGO – 24KMS
From Baiona to Vigo, the Coastal Camino Portugues route offers pilgrims again the option of heading a bit inland or following the coast all the way to Vigo.
We highly recommend following the lower route, taking you along beach promenades for most of the day, until you reach the city harbour, having left the city’s famous Samil Beach behind. Plenty of opportunities to go for a swim today, if travelling in the Summertime.
Vigo city is one of Galicia’s biggest and an important port. Make sure you explore the old town and go for a stroll by the harbour. If you are taking a rest day, we recommend taking a ferry to the magnificent Cies Islands.
DAY 9 – WALKING FROM VIGO TO REDONDELA – 16KMS
Leaving Vigo city behind by the Senda da Auga, pilgrims on the Coastal Camino Portugues route will take in wonderful views of Vigo Bay and the city below.
Today’s stage is relatively short and takes you to the town of Redondela, where the trail joins the classic Camino Portugues route and where you are likely to encounter more pilgrims than any of the stages before.
DAY 10 – WALKING FROM REDONDELA TO PONTEVEDRA – 19KMS
Today, you will be walking the traditional Camino Portugues trail to the wonderful city of Pontevedra. Along the way you will pass Arcade, famous for its oysters and the Romanesque bridge of Pontesampaio.
While the Camino trail doesn’t take you to Arcade harbour, you can take a small detour to enjoy a break there. From there, it is back to forest tracks and small country roads lanes all the way to Pontevedra.
It is a relatively short stage so you will have plenty of time to explore and admire the beauty of Pontevedra’s Old Town.
DAY 11 – WALKING FROM PONTEVEDRA TO CALDAS DE REIS – 21KMS
From beautiful Pontevedra’s Old Town you will head for the spa town of Caldas de Reis, passing many small little hamlets and villages on your way, back to rural tracks.
Caldas de Reis is named after its hot springs that you can see in the historic part of town and that can also be enjoyed the traditional ‘balneario’.
DAY 12 – WALKING FROM CALDAS DE REIS TO PADRON – 18KMS
After Caldas de Reis the Camino Portugues trail takes pilgrims back to oak forests, paths among vineyards and tiny villages with pretty Romanesque churches, such as the Church of Santa Mariña de Carracedo.
The stop for tonight is the town of Padrón, which is believed to be the place where the body of Saint James first landed when it was brought back Santiago de Compostela by boat after the Apostle’s death.
It is also the home of ‘Padron peppers’ and Galicia’s most illustrious poet: Rosalia de Castro. Explore the old quarter, its churches and quaint squares; and don’t leave without tasting its world famous peppers.
DAY 13 – WALKING FROM PADRON TO SANTIAGO DE COMPOSTELA – 25KMS
Today is your last day walking the Camino Portugues as you leave Padron and walk the last 25kms into Santiago de Compostela. It’s both the least and the most exciting day of the journey, as pilgrims must leave the countryside behind and navigate the city suburbs as you near Santiago. It is also the most exciting day of the journey as today you will finally reach Santiago de Compostela and its cathedral.
You will enter the Old Town by the Alameda Park and down Rua do Franco, always lively and vibrant with students, pilgrims and locals. The atmosphere as you arrive in Praza do Obradoiro and the Cathedral, is of pure joy and elation as pilgrims hug, smile and celebrate their achievement. You have arrived! Enjoy this magic moment.
Remember to head to the Pilgrims Office in the Rua Carretas to request your Compostela certificate.
DAY 14 – EXPLORE SANTIAGO DE COMPOSTELA
After your Camino walk, it is time to discover the wonderful city of Santiago de Compostela. The UNESCO World Heritage Site Old Town can be easily explored on foot, enjoying its vibrant atmosphere.
After a visit to the Cathedral and its treasures, head to the Abastos Market where you will find all the Galician delicacies on display from seafood and fish to cheeses, meats, vegetables and sweet treats.
The market is the city’s second most visited attraction and there are lovely cafes and bars nearby, where you can enjoy a cafe con churros, a glass of wine or sit down for lunch.
Read our blog post: Things to do and see in Santiago de Compostela
DAY 15 – SANTIAGO DE COMPOSTELA AIRPORT
Today it is time to say goodbye to Santiago de Compostela and head back to Rosalia de Castro Airport for your flight back home. We hope you enjoyed your Camino experience and that you are back again soon!
This is a detailed itinerary of the Coastal Camino Portugues route from Porto. It is also possible to add extra nights and breaks in some of the longer stages as indicated in the description. Our travel experts will advice on the best options for you.