Thursday, July 30, 2015

Finisterre - Muxia / Santiago de Compostela

Camino Primitivo / Camino Finisterre day 19.
Distance: 27.0km (472.8km), time spent: 7:08 (144:38).
Weather: Sun and nice weather, some wind and clouds.

I am so early up that I am too sleepy to pay any heed to the fact that this is my last day of walking for this time. Nobody else is awake in the albergue when I quietly goes down to the kitchen below. In the streets, it is quiet and dark, only lit up by the streetlights. In the sky, the clouds of yesterday has left the end of the world.

Dawn in Finisterre, on the way out of the town.

The walk to Muxia is the first one on this Camino where I start before it is light, something that again bring back memories from last time. I can clearly remember how good I enjoyed to start walking in the dark and then go for a little while before the sun begun to illuminate the landscape around me. Behind me when I go is Finisterre slowly lighting up.

A sandy beach between Finisterre and Muxia.

Still, it takes some time before the first sunrays shines upon me. As before, the Camino goes on a mix of paved road and forest tracks. The route passes through several small villages, but between Finisterre and Muxia there is only one village where there is food and drinks available, Lires.

Two horreos with a view to the sea.

It is a pleasant walk, but since I now are located so close to the Atlantic, I would have enjoyed it more had the route gone closer to the coast. You are not bereft of the view of the ocean however. It is a beautiful day and my mood is hence significantly better than yesterday.

Which way to turn? Scallop-markers leads both ways.

Most of the pilgrims I meet comes from the opposite direction, it is many that has chosen to go to Muxia first and then finish in Finisterre. I keep company with an Italian girl the last kilometres to Muxia. Where the route first goes up and over an area with less vegetation, where there afterwards is a long descent until you can see the ocean through the trees. I feel that my feet are tired on the way down.

The Camino going through a tunnel made of vegetation.

We are both satisfied on the last part that goes along the sea. Muxia is a place that almost could have been on the coast of northern Norway, houses situated on a harsh coast do have a tendency to look alike. I would like to have been here an autumn- or winter-day when the storms comes in from the ocean.

Walking across an open landscape before the descent to Muxia.

When we arrive at the centre of Muxia, the Italian girl goes to find an albergue; she plans to stay the night here. I would love to do the same, but I have to travel back to Santiago today since my plane leaves for home early tomorrow. I make my way towards the church at the cliffs, which marks the endpoint of my long walk. To get there, I mistakenly climbs over a small top lying between the town centre and the church.

The church and the sea. In stormy days, the waves can reach the church walls.

Out by the cliffs there is a strong wind. Though it is nothing compared to how stormy it can be here, I have seen a picture where the waves are crashing into the walls of the church. The church, Santuario de la Virgen de la Barca, is a fantastic endpoint. While the waves are breaking against the cliffs and the wind ruffles what little hair I have, I sit and look out towards the sea. To me, there is nothing more to go, I am at my 0.00km-mark. It now feels complete, 19 days and around 470km after I set out from Sebrayo. I have brought with me a cold beer to celebrate in the wind; I have again taken my shoes and socks off.

Santuario de la Virgen de la Barca.

Afterwards in Muxia, I meet again Lucy and Annie. I had hoped to see them again here, but instead of walking here, they had taken the bus. Now they sat and waited for the bus back to Santiago de Compostela. I join them on the bus back.

Once in Muxia you can finally put your feet up in the air and say you have done it (for good this time), these feet has carried me around 472km from Sebrayo to here during 19 days.

In Santiago I have booked myself into the very pleasant hotel I stayed in for four years ago, A Casa do Peregrino. Now I am alone in the city, all the others I have met have left (Lucy and Annie had an appointment with some friends, so I had to keep myself with company). In the amusement park I go for a ride in the ferris wheel, as compensation that I did not get to see Santiago from the roof of the cathedral. The bright neon lights quite the difference from the calm ambience of the Camino. The view is great.

View over Santiago de Compostela with the cathedral from the ferris wheel in the park.

I celebrate my walk in A Taberna do Bispo, which is a tapas-place I can strongly recommend. Their fried brie-tapas with blueberry sauce is perhaps the best tapas I have ever tasted. In the evening, there is free concert in the city outside the cathedral. A little bit cheesy Spanish rock, but what does it matter, I have a good time. Inside the domes on the other side of the cathedral, a folk music ensemble are playing. A great finish of a wonderful walk.

<- Finisterre

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