Based in Spain since 2006

Camino de Santiago Tour

Our flagship journey where the idea for Fresco Tours was born in 1999! Join us and enjoy all the comforts of a Fresco Tours full-service tour: expert guides, support vehicle, fabulous accommodations and savory gourmet picnic lunches!

Experience and Expertise

Your two bilingual guides that accompany the tour are either Spanish or live in Spain year round. This is our home and we love to share it with you!

Fabulous Food

All your meals (B,L,D) are included, so you only need to worry about enjoying the trail! Weather permitting, our gourmet picnics showcase the freshest of local flavors.

Unique Accommodations

Charming restored manor homes and 3-4 star hotels that offer the best in hospitality, comfort, and location.

La Compostela

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

Semi-Independent Tour

You choose! Walk alone with the assurance that we’ll take care of you or enjoy the company of others and your knowledgeable guides.

Van Supported

No need to carry a heavy pack – let us do the lifting while you do the walking.

Expect to have a wonderful time!

We’ve designed each trip to enjoy the stunning beauty of the Spanish landscape, while giving you a true sense of the soul and magic of these exciting people and their culture. We love to share this magnificent country and want you to feel a part of it – for us it is more than just a trip, it is our home.

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The Cathedral of Leon on the Camino de Santiago

Day 1

León

Accommodations: León (D)

Meeting time: 3:30pm

In the afternoon, your Fresco Tour guides meet and greet you at your Orientation Meeting. Afterwards, our local guide takes us on visit of León's magnificent Gothic Cathedral, whose stained glass windows have led people to say that it is made of more glass than stone. We finish our evening with a meal fit for the kings!
The Iron Cross or Cruz de Ferrp on the Camino de Santiago

Day 2

León to Iron Cross

Accommodations: Bierzo Valley (B, L, D)

Walking: 15 km / 9 mi

After breakfast, we hop in the van and stretch our legs with a climb to the Iron Cross or Cruz de Ferro! Here you can participate in the long-standing pilgrim tradition of leaving a stone at the foot of the cross in order to ask for protection on your journey. We finish in the town of Villafranca del Bierzo, home of the 12th century Romanesque church of Santiago, which would welcome and care for any pilgrims that fell sick along the Way.
The Ancares Mountains and cows on the Camino de Santiago

Day 3

O Cebreiro to Triacastela

Accommodations: Sarria (B, L, D)

Walking: 21 km / 13 mi

With our boots and scallop shells on, we get our first glimpse of the green Galician countryside. Our day starts with a steady climb to the Alto do Poio, the highest point of the Camino de Santiago in Galicia. After a stamp and a coffee, we start our descent down to the town of Triacastela, named after the three castles that once stood watch over the village. Our first full day of walking behind us, we can hop in the van to shuttle to our accommodations for an evening of relaxation.
The Camino de Santiago leaving Triacastela

Day 4

Triacastela to Sarria

Accommodations: Sarria (B, L, D)

Walking: 17 km / 11 mi

Today is the day of the difficult decision! What to do? The Camino de Santiago has two paths to reach Sarria - take the high road through San Xil and enjoy the beautiful views from atop the ridge or visit the ancient monastery of Samos along the river valley. Traditionally, pilgrims would have to choose one or the other. We, however, get to do both! By day, we walk along the hills of San Xil and in the evening, we'll take the van to visit one of Spain's oldest monasteries!
The church near Mercadoiro after the 100 kilometer marker on the Camino de Santiago.

Day 5

Sarria to Portomarín

Accommodations: Palas de Rei (B, L, D)

Walking: 22 km / 14 mi

Leaving Sarria, we should take in the views from atop the city and keep an eye out for the ruins of Celtic castros hiding in the vegetation along the Camino. On our way to Portomarín, we walk by the 100 km marker, a milestone (or kmstone!) for the millions of pilgrims who have traversed this same spot during the last millennium. As we approach Portomarín, where the 12th-century Church of San Juan, once stood guard over the banks of the River Miño before it was moved, stone by stone, to the new center of town – your Fresco Tour guide will tell you more about that!
Pilgrims on their Way to Santiago after leaving Portomarin.

Day 6

Portomarin to Palas de Rei

Accommodations: Palas de Rei (B, L, D)

Walking: 25 km / 16 mi

We start our day with a light climb out of the river valley and pass through typical Galician villages, decorated with their raised corncribs and the occasional carved granite cross that marks the way to Santiago. Continuing west, we walk through the first of many eucalyptus forests along the Camino de Santiago and work our way into Palas de Rei. What better way to reward ourselves for our efforts than a glass of Galicia's light Albariño white wine!
The hamlet of San Xulain on the Camino de Santiago.

Day 7

Palas de Rei to Melide

Accommodations: Melide (B, L, D)

Walking: 15 km / 9 mi

Following the now very familiar yellow arrows, we ramble up and down gentle rolling hills along quiet footpaths. Little has changed in this serene corner of Spain. The peaceful rural environment of local farmers tending to their lazy cattle which graze near old stone houses creates a scene from another time. We quickly arrive back to the present in the bustling market town of Melide, where tender octopus, or pulpo, is still boiled in large copper kettles on the street.
A pilgrim crossing the stepping stone bridge after Melide on the Camino de Santiago.

Day 8

Melide to Arzúa

Accommodations: Melide (B, L, D)

Walking: 14 km / 9 mi

We leave Melide early morning and wind our way across the Galician countryside. Our journey is filled with tiny churches dating back to the 12th and 14th-century dedicated to Santiago and Santa Maria. Arzúa is the ideal opportunity to set out in search of their famous local cow cheese or perhaps a bit of empanada, a light crusty pastry filled with either beef or tuna.
Two pilgrims on the Camino de Santiago holding hands.

Day 9

Arzúa to Arca

Accommodations: Arca (B, L, D)

Walking: 22 km / 14 mi

Today we continue to enjoy expansive and verdant landscapes, occasionally embellished by the charming atmosphere of tiny three-house villages. Get a feel for the people by greeting a local villager with a Buenos días or Hola. You'll see how these quiet and reserved people will quickly wish you well on your journey to Santiago. On this trek, you are no longer a tourist, but a pilgrim on the Camino de Santiago!
The statue of a pilgrim at the Monte de Gozo on the Camino de Santiago.

Day 10

Arca to Santiago

Accommodations: Santiago (B, L, D)

Walking: 16 km / 10 mi

9 days, 160 kilometers, and we have finally arrived to Santiago de Compostela. Congratulations! 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. After requesting our Compostela certificates at the Pilgrims’ Office, we head to our hotel and get ready for our evening celebratory dinner!
The cathedral of Santiago de Compostela.

Day 11

Santiago de Compostela

Accommodations: ITINERARY ENDS (B)

After breakfast, our local historian gives us a closer look at the amazing Cathedral that has seen so many transformations since the original chapel built in the 9th century. After the tour, we sadly say our last Buen Camino! as we leave you at the Cathedral in time for the pilgrims' mass at noon.

 

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

2 Guides

Our greatest resource! We know Spain, because it is our home.  Both of your guides are experienced professionals that are either Spanish or live in Spain year round – no hired out summer help! When specified, local art historians will join us to provide further insights of the specific monument / museum that we visit.

* Groups of 3 – 6 pax are accompanied by only 1 guide.

Limited Group Sizes

Fresco Tours are in small groups to ensure that you receive the individual attention that you deserve. In order to treat each of our clients with a personal touch, we limit our group size to a maximum of 16 participants.

Local Guided Visits

In Leon and Santiago, we will be joined by local art historians, who will bring the monuments and cities to life! A minimum of 5 people is necessary for this service to be provided.

Accommodations

Fresco Tours selects a combination of 3-4 star hotels, restored country manors and B&B’s that offer the best in hospitality, comfort and location. All rooms have their own bathrooms. Tour prices are based on double occupancy.

All Meals

Food speaks volumes about a culture and we love to eat! During our walk days, when possible, we prepare gourmet picnics, using the freshest of local ingredients and selecting the tastiest recipes of the region. Dinners are celebrated in restaurants chosen not only for their menu, but also their atmosphere and service. All breakfast, lunches and dinners are included. We are proud to cater to vegetarians and those with food allergies as well.

Support Vehicle

Your walks will be accompanied by a support vehicle that will be there to provide you assistance when the route permits. The possibility of shorter routes and pick-up options will be explained on a daily basis.

Luggage Transfer

Your luggage will be transported between hotels. You do the walking, we’ll do the lifting!

Special Event Tickets

Wine tastings, garden tours, concerts, etc. as outlined in the itinerary.

Additional Assistance

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

Ground Transportation

All ground transportation between the designated starting and finishing point of your Fresco Tour is provided. We will help facilitate information for your travel arrangements prior to and after the tour start and finish.

Not Included

Airfare to and from Spain, airport taxes / departure fees, visas, gratuities or tips, items of personal nature – laundry, phone, luggage surplus charges, medical expenses, bar, etc.

Prior to / After your Fresco Tour: Should your vacation to Spain be for more than a few days prior to or after your Fresco Tour, perhaps you would be interested in a Spain-taineous Custom Tour and personalized private itinerary. Let us know and we’ll create an itinerary especially in tune with your needs and desires.

Table of Contents

Getting There & Back 

How do I get to the Camino de Santiago Tour starting point? 

León, Spain is the official starting point of the Camino de Santiago Tour and can be reached via train, or bus. Traveling from either Madrid or Bilbao, one can choose between the train (RENFE) or the bus (ALSA). For a sample of prices and timetables, please see: 

RENFE Train – Madrid to Leon & Bilbao to Leon 

ALSA Bus – Madrid to Leon & Bilbao to Leon. 

How can I purchase my bus or train tickets beforehand?

The RENFE website can be a bit temperamental. Therefore, we recommend 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, the sale of train tickets depends on RENFE’s scheduling and some routes cannot be purchased until approximately 30 to 60 days prior to departure – please be patient. Schedules and availability are also 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 the Camino de Santiago Tour? 

Fresco Tours Camino de Santiago Tour covers the last 160 km of the Camino in the Northwest region called Galicia. Here we enjoy a more temperate climate, and it is generally cooler than other parts of the Camino de Santiago and Spain in the summer. 

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

What is a typical day like on the Camino de Santiago Tour? 

After breakfast, we lace up and get the blood going with a walk for a couple hours, where we will do a check point to make sure that everything is OK. You then continue along the Camino for another 1-2 hours where you will come across a complete gourmet picnic prepared with the freshest local ingredients. On some days, we continue for 1-2 hours more after lunch to burn off dessert. 

In the afternoon, we go to our hotels, where we take a shower, siesta and just relax! We finish our day with a glass of tinto and a feast of the local gastronomy. We then retire for the night and get ready to do it again! On some afternoons, we have planned excursions, such as a visit to an ancient monastery or perhaps a massage! 

Does the group stop for breaks on the Camino de Santiago Tour? 

The great thing about the Camino is that it is very well-marked and we encourage people to walk at a pace that is comfortable for them – this is not a race! We want you to enjoy the route and we also like to stop with our clients for a coffee or cerveza along the way and take everything in! 

What is the terrain like on the Camino de Santiago Tour? 

In Galicia, the region where we 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 the Camino de Santiago Tour? 

We will be walking from O Cebreiro to Santiago de Compostela, the last 160 km of the Camino de Santiago. For a detailed map of the distances between towns along the Camino and their respective altitudes, please click here. 

How many kilometers are walked each day on the Camino de Santiago Tour? 

The number of kilometers scheduled for each day varies from 15 km to 25 km. We have designed this tour to allow the possibility to walk the last 100 km to Santiago, which is a requirement by the Church if you are going to ask for the Compostela Certificate. However, the walks are accompanied by a support vehicle and options for less (or more!) km’s are possible on a daily basis. We can tailor the Camino to suit your needs! 

Will I be able to do laundry on the Camino de Santiago Tour?  

On the Camino de Santiago Tour we offer a Fresco Tours laundry service roughly halfway through the trip where you can send your clothes to the laundromat to have them washed and dried. In addition, some hotels will have the capability to do laundry on the premises or you can use local laundromats whenever you’d like. We also recommend that you bring quick-drying clothes that you can handwash and dry overnight at the hotel if all else fails! 

Before You Go / Preparing 

What type of shoes do I need to walk the Camino de Santiago Tour? 

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 the Camino de Santiago Tour? 

We encourage you to walk before and be prepared for your own enjoyment. However, this is your vacation and not boot camp! During your walk, one of the two guides will be on the trail with the group to ensure that all is well. Additionally, we have planned check points along the way with our support van to make sure you have plenty of water, offer you a change of shoes, or if you just feel like taking a break. In most cases, you will see the van at a minimum every couple of hours.  

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 credit card (Visa or MasterCard only), bank transfer or via Wise transferThe balance of your tour payment is due 60 days prior to the departure date. If the tour that you selected begins within 60 days of booking, final payment is due at that time. Failure to receive the remainder of your trip balance by the due date will be considered a cancellation.

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 advise 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.

Guided

11 days / 10 nights

160 km / 99 mi

Camino Frances

Sep 9 - 19, 2024
Available
Sep 23 - Oct 3, 2024
Available
Oct 7 - 17, 2024
Apr 1 - 11, 2025
Available
Apr 21 - May 1, 2025
Available
May 5 - 15, 2025
Available
May 19 - 29, 2025
Available
Jun 2 - 12, 2025
Available
Jun 16 - 26, 2025
Last Spots
Jul 7 - 17, 2025
Available
Aug 25 - Sep 4, 2025
Available
Sep 8 - 18, 2025
Available
Oct 6 - 16, 2025
Available
Oct 20 - 30, 2025
Available

Price per person

3595 €

3,887.58 $

* USD$ price based on current exchange rate

Single Supplement Fee

595 €

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