Based in Spain since 2006

A Fresco Start Camino Portugués Tour

On this walk, you'll cover the last 118 km to Santiago. You begin your journey from the town of Tui (Spain), which sits on the banks of the River Miño and has wonderful views of it’s neighbors across the way in Portugal.

Private Bed & Bath

We understand that people do want to walk the Camino, but would rather not sleep in albergues, the communal dormitories available along the trail. Some pilgrims enjoy having their own bedrooms with a door, an en-suite bathroom, and plenty of hot water!

Freedom From Your Bags

Our self-guided clients do not want or cannot carry all their belongings with them. In fact, they enjoy being able to add some extra weight to their load and have some creature comforts, such as that Ipad!

Meals with Friends, IF you wish

Independence can be great when traveling, but it is also nice to have some occasional companions to share those tales from the trail and a meal or two!

A Live Person to Help

Are you nervous and scared? Coming to a foreign country to walk for a couple of weeks is daunting no matter how many books and web forums you’ve read. You want more than just an Orientation Packet sent to you in the mail – you want a LIVE person to answer your questions and help you take those first steps on your journey.

La Compostela

Our itinerary qualifies you for the Compostela certificate upon your arrival to Santiago.

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The medieval city of Tui on the Camino Portugués.

Day 1

Tui

Accommodations: Tui (D)

Meeting time: 7:00pm

In the evening, we meet the group in the riverside border town of Tui, where many pilgrims doing the Portuguese Camino begin their journey to Compostela. Your Fresco Tours guide will hand out your Orientation Packets and review all the materials to get you ready for your Pilgrimage on the Camino de Santiago! Afterwards, we'll take you to get your first stamp in your Pilgrim's Passport before enjoying a traditional Galician meal.
A pilgrim on the Camino Portugues.

Day 2

Tui to O Porriño

Accommodations: O Porriño (B)

Walking: 17 km / 11 mi

With our boots and scallop shells on, your Fresco Tours guide escorts you out of town indicating the various Camino markers and the famous yellow arrows. As we leave Tui, your guide will navigate you in and out of the historic medieval town where you will be able to admire the 12th century Santa María Cathedral, the Jewish Quarter and past your first medieval bridge spanning the River Louro. Here we bid you a last "Buen Camino" as you continue on your own along the Way to Santiago! You stroll through the forested countryside on a combination of backroads and country footpaths as you make your way north through the Louro River Valley to O Porriño, an important trading town and stop for pilgrims since the 14th century.
The Camino Portugues trail to O Porriño.

Day 3

O Porriño to Arcade

Accommodations: Arcade (B)

Walking: 23 km / 14 mi

Leaving O Porriño, the walk begins with a light climb through typical southern Galician villages surrounded by vineyards. Look out for the occasional carved granite cross that marks the way to Santiago and the Roman milestones that marked the Roman Road Vía XIX. Before reaching the beachside town of Arcade, you will walk through the fascinating town of Redondela with its two 19th century rail viaducts that cross the town’s sky. Finish the day with the local specialties of oysters and mussels that are farmed along the estuary and the Albariño white wine.
An horreo and the bridge at Puentesampaio on the Camino Portugués.

Day 4

Arcade to Pontevedra

Accommodations: Pontevedra (B)

Walking: 14 km / 9 mi

Following the Camino, you cross the bridge of Ponte Sampaio, where a group of locals defeated Napoleon’s troops in 1809. You then cross one last hill with views of the Vigo Estuary before descending into Pontevedra. The town is best known for being the home to the Church of La Peregrina (The Lady Pilgrim) with its iconic scallop shell floor plan shape. La Peregrina is also the patron saint of the Portuguese Camino and is devoutly venerated by locals and foreigners alike. Today’s stage is shorter than the rest allowing you time to explore Pontevedra at your leisure.
The Chapel of La Virgen del Camino in Pontevedra.

Day 5

Pontevedra to Caldas de Reis

Accommodations: Caldas de Reis (B)

Walking: 22 km / 14 mi

The Camino takes you out of town and before you realize it, into the quiet forested countryside, along trails and small country lanes all the way to Caldas de Reis. You can even make a short detour and admire some spectacular waterfalls halfway through the stage. Your stage ends in Caldas de Reis, which roughly translates as the kings’ thermal waters, and like a king or queen you will feel when you dip your tired feet into the soothing natural thermal springs in town.
Padron on the Camino Portugues.

Day 6

Caldas de Reis to Padrón

Accommodations: Padrón (B)

Walking: 18 km / 11 mi

The day starts with an enticing walk through wooded vales, vineyards and small villages before you gain the last major hill on your Camino. The descent takes you into the Ulla River valley that separates the province of Pontevedra, which you have just crossed south to north, from the province of A Coruña, where Santiago de Compostela is. The stage ends in the historic town of Padrón (or pedrón – Galician for big stone), which pays homage to the famous rock where the boat that contained Saint James was moored to upon its arrival from Jerusalem after he had been martyred. Or in other words, this is where the Santiago story began and where you will literally be walking in the footsteps of the apostle! Padrón is also famous in culinary circles for its little green peppers, some which are hot and others that are not.
The last stage of the Camino Portugues.

Day 7

Padrón to Santiago de Compostela

Accommodations: Santiago de Compostela (B)

Walking: 14 km / 9 mi

7 days, 118 kilometers, and you have arrived to Santiago de Compostela. Congratulations! Head to the Pilgrims’ Office for your last stamp in your Passport and request that well-deserved certificate, the Compostela, for having walked to Santiago. You are going to love this magical city filled with fantastic monuments and a lively buzz from the international pilgrims and university students that fill its medieval streets.
The cathedral of Santiago de Compostela.

Day 8

Santiago de Compostela

Accommodations: Itinerary ends (B)

After your breakfast our local historian gives you a closer look at the amazing Cathedral that has seen so many transformations since the original chapel built in the 9th-century. Its age seems almost impossible when looking at the Baroque façade that graces the entryway. Afterwards, make sure you give your well-earned hug to St. James! Alas, your itinerary has come to a finish.

 

*Please note: This itinerary is subject to slight modifications due to hotel availability, weather, festivals, and other occurences.

Orientation Meeting

A Fresco Tour guide will hand deliver your Orientation Packet and give you a detailed meeting on the first night in Tui. Your Welcome Packet is filled with all the materials you’ll need to transform into a pilgrim: Your credentials (Pilgrim’s Passport), a scallop shell, daily maps of the route, a guide book with historical information of the villages that you will pass through, and a few other goodies for the trail! We’ll answer any questions that you have before starting your journey to Santiago and on the next morning lead you out on The Way! Minimum of 3 people for this service to be provided.

Accommodations

7 nights in a combination of 3 & 4 star hotels, restored manor homes, and small hotels / inns located on the Camino. All rooms have their own bathrooms. We’ve chosen places for their hospitality, comfort, and location.
*Keep in mind that as you will be walking through rural countryside, the availability of 3 & 4 star hotels all along the route is not possible.

Meals

All breakfasts are included with your hotels. We have arranged that they will be supplemented from the standard Spanish breakfast of coffee & toast. The first night of the itinerary, our guide will take you for dinner at one of our favorite places in Tui – wine and beer included. Afterwards, we will provide you with a list of places along the Camino with food recommendations. Let us know if you have any dietary restrictions and we can ask our hotels to accommodate for those as well!

Limited Group Size

Although this tour is Self-Guided, we’ve limited the size of each departure to 16 participants. Availability is on a first come, first serve basis.

Luggage Transport

We will arrange for the transfer of 1 suitcase / piece of luggage (20 kg / 45 lbs MAX) per person between your hotels on your walk along the Camino. If the weight of your bag exceeds the limit, you will need to divide it into 2 pieces. Please contact us for details for rates for extra bags.

Guided Visit

In Santiago, our local art historian will provide you with a guided visit of the Cathedral and the surrounding squares. Minimum of 5 people for this service to be provided.

Additional Assistance

We are here to help! Need assistance with hotels prior to or after your trip? Train or bus tickets to and from your tour? Questions about what to wear? Need a taxi while on the trail? Based in Spain, we are here to make sure that your trip runs smooth as can be – we are available!

Table of Contents

Getting There & Back 

How do I get to A Fresco Start Camino Portugués starting point? 

Tui, Spain is the official starting point of the A Fresco Start Camino Portugués 118 km tour and can be reached via the bus that services Santiago de Compostela, Lisbon and Porto. For complete details on the bus routes, please visit ALSA Bus. 

If you are traveling from Santiago de Compostela, you can take the bus to Valença, Portugal and then take a short taxi ride from Valença to Tui. Please see the sample schedule for Santiago de Compostela to Valença. If you are arriving in Madrid, you can fly to Vigo and from there take a Lugove Bus or a taxi to Tui. 

If you would like to schedule a car service from to Tui from either Lisbon or Porto we recommend 100 Rumos. 

How can I purchase my bus or train tickets beforehand?

We recommend the Omio website for purchasing tickets. Omio is a travel booking platform with more than 1,000 trusted partners across trains, buses and airport transfers. Search, compare and book all in one place so you can focus on the journey.

Keep in mind that train tickets cannot be purchased until 60 days prior to departure. Schedules and availability are subject to change based on train maintenance needs.

How do I get from Santiago de Compostela to Madrid and other cities?

There are now RENFE trains that will get you from Santiago to Madrid in less than 6 hours. While routes and availability may vary upon time of booking, there are several daily trains from Santiago to Madrid. The direct trains are listed as Alvia. If you are looking to fly, there are excellent internal flights that fly Santiago to Madrid 

How do I get from Madrid Airport to the city center?

If your flight flies into Madrid’s T-4 (Aeropuerto T-4) terminal, you have a local Cercanias train that will get you from the airport to the Atocha and Chamartín train station in 25-30 minutes. These trains leave the T-4 station more or less every half an hour. For more information, please visit RENFE Train 

In addition, there is an express bus that services all terminals at the airport with the Atocha Train Station. 

On the Road 

What is the weather like on A Fresco Start Camino Portugués? 

The Camino de Santiago covers over 750 km of Northern Spain and therefore has very different weather conditions depending on the region. 

A Fresco Start Camino Portugués 118 km covers the last 118 km of the Camino in the Northwest region called Galicia. Here we enjoy a more temperate climate than other parts of the Camino de Santiago and in July and August the heat is not overwhelming like it can be on the plains of Castilla y León. 

Visit this link for current and average monthly temperatures in Santiago de Compostela. 

What is the terrain like on A Fresco Start Camino Portugués? 

In Galicia, the region where you will walk, the terrain is green rolling hills – there are neither steep climbs nor treacherous descents. The trail itself is a combination of very well-maintained compact dirt and stone footpaths and small country roads.   

What is the change in elevation on A Fresco Start Camino Portugués? 

You will be walking from Tui to Santiago de Compostela, the last 118 km of the Camino de Santiago. For more information on the distances between towns along the Camino and their respective altitudes, please click here. 

How many kilometers are walked each day on A Fresco Start Camino Portugués? 

The number of kilometers scheduled for each day varies on average from 13 km to 25 km. You will walk the last 100 km to Santiago, which is the requirement by the Pilgrims’ Office in Santiago if you are going to ask for the Compostela Certificate. 

Before You Go / Preparing 

What type of shoes do I need to walk A Fresco Start Camino Portugués? 

Footwear is a very personal question – depending on how active you are and how much support you will need. Since we will be walking on a daily basis on the Camino de Santiago, I believe that comfort is key – you do not want to get blisters. You probably won’t need a full high boot that covers your ankle (unless you need this support), but rather light trail walkers or even running shoes if you are used to walking. In the spring, there may be mud and water along the trail, so keep that in mind. Most important: Make sure that they are well broken in!   

What sort of conditioning do I need to undertake before A Fresco Start Camino Portugués? 

We encourage you to walk before and be prepared for your own enjoyment. As you will be walking from inn to inn, you should be prepared to cover the day’s full stage. They say your Camino begins once you decide to do it, so enjoy your “training” walks and get those km’s in before your arrive to Spain! As a bit of insurance, we will also provide you will a list of taxi phone numbers…just in case! 

Booking a Tour

Thank you for choosing to travel with Fresco Tours! We are very excited for you to join the ranks of our Happy Customers. If at any moment you should have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact us. Thank you again and we look forward to sharing memories of a lifetime with you.

Reservations and Payments

To join us on a Fresco Tour, please visit our Secure Online Reservation Form or download and print a PDF version of the Reservation Form, one for each participant. To reserve your space on a tour, a 15% deposit per person is required and payment should be made via bank transfer or with a credit card (Visa or MasterCard only).

Confirmation

Once Fresco Tours has received your registration form and tour deposit, we will send you an email with an invoice of payments received and your remaining balance, a copy of our Assumption of Risk / Liability Waiver Form and a link to your Guest Questionnaire. These last 2 items must be returned 60 days prior to the start of tour. In addition, we will send you a Confirmation Packet with information regarding suggestions on preparation, a packing and reading list and other tips to get you excited and prepared for your Fresco Tour.

Final Registration

Once we have received final payment, the signed Assumption of Risk / Liability Waiver Form and Guest Questionnaire, you will be sent a receipt and final details regarding your tour, including a detailed itinerary and the hotel contact list.

Single Supplement Fee

Due to the nature of the accommodations we use, there are a limited number of single rooms available. Requests for these rooms are based on availability. Please see the tour itinerary for the cost of this fee. In some cases, it may imply a room smaller in size than a standard double room. If you are traveling alone, and would like to share a room, we will do our best to match you with a same-gender roommate.

Cancellation / Refund Policies

All cancellations must be made in writing. No refunds will be issued due to late arrival, early departure, or any unused portion of a tour. The Assumption of Risk / Liability Waiver form must be signed and received 60 days prior to tour departure or the reservation will also be treated as a cancellation. Cancellation fees are outlined below:

Time Price
Cancellations received 121 or more days prior to trip start
10% of trip price
Cancellations received 120 - 61 days prior to trip start
15% of trip price
Cancellations received 60 - 31 days prior to trip start
50% of trip price
Cancellations received 30 days or less prior to trip start
100% of trip price

Fresco Tours reserves the right to change, modify, or cancel a tour prior to departure for any reason, including lack of participants (tour minimum: 3-6 passengers with 1 guide, 7 passengers or more with 2 guides) or acts of nature and/or circumstances beyond our control. In this case, any payments received will be refunded in full, and this will constitute full settlement. Fresco Tours is not responsible for any additional expenses due to a canceled tour, such as the purchase of non-refundable airline tickets.

Fresco Tours reserves the right to accept, refuse, or decline any tour member’s participation at any time for any reason. In such a case, Fresco Tour’s liability is limited to the actual cost of the unused services.

Changing Tour Dates

If we are notified of a change to your scheduled tour date 6 months prior, you can apply your tour deposit to another departure date without penalty. This change can be up to 1 calendar year in advance and is subject to availability. Otherwise, the above Cancellation Fees will be applied.

As Spain-taneous Private Tours are custom built and created with specific dates in mind, any modifications will incur a 15% surcharge.

Insurance

In accordance with Spanish law and for the duration of your tour with Fresco Tours, you are covered by a basic insurance provided by Intermundial.  We  strongly advice the purchase of a more comprehensive travel insurance that includes trip cancellation / interruption. We suggest using TravelInsurance.com, which allows you to compare and assess top insurance provider policies and their different coverage plans.

Traveling Safely and Responsibly

Traveling during these complex times requires a bit more planning and a lot more reassurance. We believe that the Fresco Tours style of travel is particularly well-suited to safe activities: walking in the outdoors, small group sizes, strong reliable relationships with our local partners and, most importantly, we have the local knowledge of our home – the Camino de Santiago and the Spanish culture.

Self-Guided

8 days / 7 nights

118 km / 73 mi

Camino Portugués

May 3 - 10, 2024
Save 100€
May 24 - 31, 2024
Last Spots
May 31 - Jun 7, 2024
Available
Jun 14 - 21, 2024
Save 100€
Jun 28 - Jul 5, 2024
Save 100€
Aug 9 - 16, 2024
Save 100€
Aug 23 - 30, 2024
Available
Sep 6 - 13, 2024
Available
Sep 20 - 27, 2024
Sold Out
Sep 27 - Oct 4, 2024
Last Spots
Oct 11 - 18, 2024
Available
Oct 18 - 25, 2024
Available
May 2 - 9, 2025
Available
May 22 - 29, 2025
Available
May 30 - Jun 6, 2025
Available
Jun 12 - 19, 2025
Available
Jun 27 - Jul 4, 2025
Available
Jul 17 - 24, 2025
Available
Aug 8 - 15, 2025
Available
Aug 21 - 28, 2025
Available
Sep 5 - 12, 2025
Available
Sep 18 - 25, 2025
Available
Sep 26 - Oct 3, 2025
Available
Oct 10 - 17, 2025
Available
Oct 16 - 23, 2025
Available

Price per person

1195 €

1,313.19 $

* USD$ price based on current exchange rate

Single Supplement Fee

395 €

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