• The portion between Villafranca del Bierzo and O Cebreiro is more difficult, firstly because it spans over 30 kilometers and secondly because the last part of the journey consists of a 600 meters ascent.

    Before leaving Villafranca del Bierzo make sure to stock up on supplies as, depending on the route you take, you might not find another settlement for the next three hours. Some pilgrims prefer to split this day as the last part might be too difficult to undertake in the afternoon. Do the camino in the way that is most comfortable and most pleasant for you.

    There are two possible routes you can take in the first part of the day. The first one follows the main road and passes through Pereje before reaching Trabadelo and the second one is a more difficult, albeit a more scenic route where you climb and descent.

    After leaving Trabadelo you will find many villages on your way where you can get water and food. These last villages in the province of Leon are very small, often with less than 50 inhabitants. They are in this order: La Portela de Valcarce, Ambasmestas, Vega de Valcarce, Ruitelan, Las Herreias de Valcarce, La Faba, La Laguna de Castilla.

    The road will start its ascent after the village of Las Herreias de Valcarce but there are albergues in all these villages.

    La Laguna de Castilla is the last village in the province of Leon and O Cebreiro is the first village in Galicia. It is a bigger village than the ones you encountered today and has most things a pilgrim needs.


  • The distance between Villafranca del Bierzo to O Cebreiro is  27.8 km and here are the stops you are going through today: Pereje, Pradela, Trabadelo, La Portela de Valcarce, Ambasmestas, Vega de Valcarce, Ruitelán, Las Herrerías, La Faba, Laguna de Castilla. See below the map:

    Camino Frances25: Villafranca del Bierzo - O Cebreiro
    Camino Frances25: Villafranca del Bierzo - O Cebreiro
    Passes: Villafranca del Bierzo, Pereje, Pradela, Trabadelo, La Portela de Valcarce, Ambasmestas, Vega de Valcarce, Ruitelán, Las Herrerías, La Faba, Laguna de Castilla, O Cebreiro

  • 1. There are two routes from here - the scenic high-level route and the easier road route. 1. There are two routes from here - the scenic high-level route and the easier road route.  2. The split yellow arrow on the pavement is the only indication of the route dividing 2. The split yellow arrow on the pavement is the only indication of the route dividing  3. A steep climb out of the town 3. A steep climb out of the town  4. Then it goes on and on uphill 4. Then it goes on and on uphill  5. Looking back at Villafranca 5. Looking back at Villafranca  6. A French pilgrim who had walked from Le Puy 6. A French pilgrim who had walked from Le Puy  7. The new motorway far below with the scars made constructing it 7. The new motorway far below with the scars made constructing it  8. Walking up the hill 8. Walking up the hill  9. The top in sight at last 9. The top in sight at last  10. Keep going 10. Keep going  11. A personal waymark 11. A personal waymark  12. Descending through chestnut groves 12. Descending through chestnut groves  13. A tree 13. A tree  14. Amazing nature 14. Amazing nature  15. Yellow arrows on the post and on the road 15. Yellow arrows on the post and on the road  16. First view of Trabadelo at the foot of the mountain 16. First view of Trabadelo at the foot of the mountain  17. Very well signed at the road crossing 17. Very well signed at the road crossing  18. Entrance to village 18. Entrance to village  19. Old roof 19. Old roof  20. Meson as Callelas which gave me a very good meal even though it was a bit early 20. Meson as Callelas which gave me a very good meal even though it was a bit early  21. Old and new in the village 21. Old and new in the village  22. An old house with two balconies jettied out 22. An old house with two balconies jettied out  23. A more elaborate stone roof with a dormer 23. A more elaborate stone roof with a dormer  24. The camino runs alongside the road for a bit 24. The camino runs alongside the road for a bit  25. All the traffic now goes on the motorway so it is very quiet 25. All the traffic now goes on the motorway so it is very quiet  26. Waymark 26. Waymark  27. One pair of boots which never got to Santiago! 27. One pair of boots which never got to Santiago!  28. A beer stall put out of business by the motorway 28. A beer stall put out of business by the motorway  29. Countryside road 29. Countryside road  29. The river Valcerce accompanies the camino for much of the day 29. The river Valcerce accompanies the camino for much of the day  30. The old road through the village of La Portela 30. The old road through the village of La Portela  30. View from the road 30. View from the road  31. Herrerías Spanish pilgrims at the fountain 31. Herrerías Spanish pilgrims at the fountain  31. Saying goodbye to the N-VI, now just a country road anyway 31. Saying goodbye to the N-VI, now just a country road anyway  32. Cyclists to the right, walkers to the left to start the long ascent up to O Cebreiro 32. Cyclists to the right, walkers to the left to start the long ascent up to O Cebreiro  32. One never escapes from politics - some people in Bierzo do not want to be part of Galicia, some people in Leon do not want to be part of Castile, etc, etc 32. One never escapes from politics - some people in Bierzo do not want to be part of Galicia, some people in Leon do not want to be part of Castile, etc, etc  33. An empty house for sale 33. An empty house for sale  33. More shade in the late afternoon 33. More shade in the late afternoon  34. Shady walk uphill through the woods 34. Shady walk uphill through the woods  34. The maker of staffs for pilgrims 34. The maker of staffs for pilgrims  35. Steep ascent 35. Steep ascent  35. Street scene with motorway bridge halfway up to the sky 35. Street scene with motorway bridge halfway up to the sky  36. Meson Las Rocas in Vego de Valcarce 36. Meson Las Rocas in Vego de Valcarce  36. Traffic jam on the Camino - cows going back to pasture 36. Traffic jam on the Camino - cows going back to pasture  37. Beds in a new refugio 37. Beds in a new refugio  37. Landscape 37. Landscape  38. A nice newly opened refugio 38. A nice newly opened refugio  38. Landscape with distant motorway bridge 38. Landscape with distant motorway bridge  39. A very early start (7.30 am) 39. A very early start (7.30 am)  40. A nice dawn (7.50 am) 40. A nice dawn (7.50 am)  41. Other pilgrims in the dawn light 41. Other pilgrims in the dawn light  42. Beehive building 42. Beehive building  43. More steep ascents 43. More steep ascents  44. Fontain 44. Fontain  45. More steep ascents 45. More steep ascents 46. The first of a long helpful series of kilometre and half-kilometre stones which tell you exactly how slowly you are walking! 46. The first of a long helpful series of kilometre and half-kilometre stones which tell you exactly how slowly you are walking!  47. View 47. View  48. Lonely tree 48. Lonely tree  49. Entering the province of Lugo in Galicia 49. Entering the province of Lugo in Galicia  50. O Cebreiro - The refugio 50. O Cebreiro - The refugio


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