The Way of St. James-Portuguese Central Way

The Pilgrimage Routes to Santiago de Compostela

Santiago Way

The Origins of Santiago Way

The history of the Camino de Santiago goes back at the beginning of the 9th century (year 814) moment of the discovery of the tomb of the evangelical apostle of the Iberian Peninsula. Since this discovery, Santiago de Compostela becomes a peregrination point of the entire European continent.
The Way was defined then by the net of Roman routes that joined the neuralgic points of the Peninsula. The impressive human flow that from very soon went towards Galicia made quickly appear lots of hospitals, churches, monasteries, abbeys and towns around the route. During the 14th century the pilgrimage began to decay, fact brought by the wars, the epidemics and the natural catastrophes.
The recovery of the route begins at the end of the 19th century, but it is during the last quarter of the 20th century when the authentic contemporary resurge of the peregrination takes place. There is no doubt that the social, tourist, cultural or sport components have had a great importance in the "jacobea" revitalization but we cannot forget that the route has gained its prestige thanks to its spiritual value.
The Camino de Santiago (the Way of St. James) is a large network of ancient pilgrim routes stretching across Europe and coming together at the tomb of St. James (Santiago in Spanish) in Santiago de Compostela in north-west Spain 

Yearly, hundreds of thousands of people of various backgrounds walk the Camino de Santiago either on their own or in organized groups. People who want to have peace of mind will benefit from an organized tour or a self-guided tour while many will opt to plan the camino on their own.

The most popular route (which gets very crowded in mid-summer) is the Camino Francés which stretches 780 km (nearly 500 miles) from St. Jean-Pied-du-Port near Biarritz in France to Santiago. This route is fed by three major French routes: the Voie de Tours, the Voie de Vezelay, and the Voie du Puy. It is also joined along its route by the Camino Aragones (which is fed by the Voie d'Arles which crosses the Pyrenees at the Somport Pass), by the Camíno de Sant Jaume from Montserrat near Barcelona, the Ruta de Tunel from Irun, the Camino Primitivo from Bilbao and Oviedo, and by the Camino de Levante from Valencia and Toledo.

Other Spanish routes are the Camino Inglés from Ferrol & A Coruña, the Via de la Plata from Seville and Salamanca, and the Camino Portugues.

The network is similar to a river system small brooks join together to make streams, and the streams join together to make rivers, most of which join together to make the Camino Francés. During the middle ages, people walked out of their front doors and started off to Santiago, which was how the network grew up. Nowadays, cheap air travel has given many the opportunity to fly to their starting point, and often to do different sections in successive years. Some people set out on the Camino for spiritual reasons; many others find spiritual reasons along the Way as they meet other pilgrims, attend pilgrim masses in churches and monasteries and cathedrals, and see the large infrastructure of buildings provided for pilgrims over many centuries.

Portuguese Central Way

Via Lusitana

The Portuguese Way is the second most popular camino in terms of numbers of pilgrims. While the whole Camino Portugues has its starting point in the capital of Portugal, Lisbon, most pilgrims start their trip from Portugal's second largest city, Porto or from the Portuguese-Spanish border town of Tui.

The stretch from Porto to Santiago has frequent pilgrim hostels and bars on the road and is quite busy with pilgrims. The route from Lisbon to Porto has less facilities and the waymarks are not that good but it can be done with more preparation.

The entire Camino Portugues from Lisbon to Santiago is 616 kilometers long but the part that starts in Porto is only 240 kilometers long.

The pilgrimage from Portuguese lands to Santiago de Compostela originates in the Middle Ages. It was used by Queen Isabel of Portugal as well in the early 14th century. The route followed closely the ancient Roman roads of Lusitania but today on many stretches you will have to walk along a modern road.

The weather in northern Portugal and Galicia are influenced by the Atlantic Ocean and there are many days with heavy rainfalls all year round.

Winter is not a season that is advisable for the Camino Portugues. Besides the weather, some albergues will be closed for the winter and there will be less facilities overall. However if you decide to do the camino in the winter months, you will have an experience all for yourself, especially in the first kilometers.

Spring is a favourite among many as the nature starts to grow back again and the weather is mild. However rain can happen any time of the day throughout the year here so be prepared accordingly.

Summer is the most popular time to walk the Camino Portugues, hence the busiest months will be July and August. It can get crowded, especially in the latest stages of the camino and albergues might be full.

Autumn is a relatively dry season and the temperatures don't trop too low until November, thus it can be a great time to do the Camino Portugues. It can also be a good time to taste the wine from the region.

Central Portuguese Way

We will be happy to make your pilgrimage in Camiño Central Portugues as comfortable as possible so that you can enjoy the beauty of the landscapes and bear in a more "light" the hardness of some stretches of the Way. For this we offer three different services to help you.

Click on the pictures and find out what we have to offer.

This service is for those arriving or departing by plane and want the convenience of an airport transfer service to the point of departure of the Camino, or from Santiago to the airport. We offer a personalized transport service in comfortable vehicles up to 6 places

Enjoy the charms of the Portuguese Way to the fullest and leave your luggage on us.

We offer a baggage transfer service between accommodations in the Portuguese Way for your comfort.

In the course of your pilgrimage and to rest and renew your energies, enjoy some emblematic sites such as the Fatima Shrine, Almourol Castle, the Convent of Christ, Batalha Monastery among many other places that will make your pilgrimage something unique and unforgettable.