→ 4.00 → Astorga → 2.40km → Valdeviejas

Altitude
878
To end of camino
256.90
ATM
Yes
Bar
Yes
Bus
Yes
Bus Terminal
Yes
Correos
Correos 3, 24700, Mon-Fri: 0830-1430 & Sat: 0930-1300, 987 615 442
Grocery
Yes
Hospital
Yes
Medical Center
Yes
Pharmacy
Yes
Train
Yes

In Astorga you may notice a sudden increase in the number of pilgrims, new faces will appear amongst the regular crowd you have grown accustomed to. They are likely Spanish, as this is a common starting point for Spaniards, or they have come from Sevilla along the Via de la Plata. A quick peek at their boots will tell the two apart.

Here you will take first notice of the Maragato culture, the ancient tribe of red-headed Iberians that served as the muleteers between the coast and the interior of Spain. They maintain several curious customs by modern standards, doing most thing the exact opposite as we are accustomed. One of these is their cocido, a meal which is served meat first and greens last. It is a hearty meal and one not to be tackled alone. Grab a group of pilgrims and head off to one of the restaurants serving “Cocido Maragato” for a taste. Be warned, this is not a vegetarian-friendly option.

Later on down the road you have the choice of passing through a well preserved Maragato village where only recently have the locals abandoned their old way of locking their doors: it was their custom to leave the key in the outside door when they left town as a sign to their neighbors that they are gone and as an invitation to the same neighbors to let themselves in if they need anything.

Three buildings of note: 1. The Ayuntamiento (whose animatronic sculptures ring in the hours), 2. The Palacio Episcopal, which was never occupied by the Bishop and which was designed by Gaudi, and 3. the Catedral de Astorga. The last two can be visited on a joint ticket for 5 euros but the opening hours are not always clear.

Fiesta

Santa Marta is celebrated during the last week of August.

Market day is Tuesday.

History

At the junction of several Roman roads it is no wonder that Astorga is full of Roman ruins. Several dig sights are ongoing and can be toured, and nearly every structure in town has some Roman foundation. This was an important crossroad for the Romans and the gateway into El Bierzo.

The Road

The camino here leaves the last of the plains behind and begins, slowly at first, to climb. The ascent is slow and gradual until Rabanal, where it begins a more steep ascent to the alto and an equally quick descent into Molinaseca. On the way up it passes through several small but equipped towns (no ATM but plenty to eat).

Comments

Camino de Sant… (not verified)

Serrano restaurant was an amazing experience, if you get a change try to go for dinner there, the food is amazing and the waiter is so kind and helpful

Camino de Sant… (not verified)

The proprietress, Patricia, cares about your comfort. All single beds, no bunks, with honest to goodness sheets and plush inviting blankets. Super clean. Great relaxing stay. Highly recommend.

Camino de Sant… (not verified)

New great place directly when you enter Astorga. Bunk beds but with actual sheets and blankets are available. Lamp and power outlet for each bed. Good dinner and nice outdoor area.

Camino de Sant… (not verified)

Albergue 'My Way' opened up here just yesterday (27th of june). When you enter Astorga you can see the mural of a shell on your left hand side. It is just before the climb into the old city center.
Great please, great food! Nice garden with different spots to hang out. Bit more expensive then the Municipal, but you get more comfort instead.
Private rooms available and a dorm with +-20 beds.

Highly recommended!

Camino de Sant… (not verified)

There is currently (June 2022) no joint ticket for both. The Cathedral and its museum cost 4,50€ with a pilgrim credential. The Gaudi Palace costs 5€. Both are well worth the cost. If short on time choose the palace - it is extraordinary and I like anything else on the Camino. (There is a 5€ joint ticket to visit the Roman Museum and Chocolate Museum. Both are small but interesting if you’re spending an extra day in Astorga, but not essential if you’re just passing through.)

Camino de Sant… (not verified)

This four-star hotel is not listed in Wise Pilgrim. It's a historic hotel that was used by Napoleon in his forces during the war. It's very charming, and centrally located. About a 2 minute walk from the cathedral. It has a beautiful courtyard with partial cathedral views. The breakfast buffet was a little pricey for the spread, but there's a great restaurant 30 seconds down the road on Calle Postas. Try their roasted padron peppers. Simply fantastic.

Camino de Sant… (not verified)

Gentleman, if you need a haircut, head to Felipe Garcia's barber shop. He's very professional, and even speaks a little English. He did a fantastic job on my hair and beard. I've been getting haircuts during international travel for years now, and it's a fun way to peek into a different part of the culture. If he is in the middle of cutting someone's hair he'll give you a ticket and tell you what time to return. Prices are posted on the wall. His shop is a stone's throw from the cathedral.

michael

This town is just lovely. If possible, plan to spend some hours there. It’s beautiful and calm, plenty of cafes and restaurants. I liked it even more than Leon, it’s amazing.

michael

This small hotel is tucked away on a side street (next to the Museum of Time) and is a great place away from the noisier main streets. The rooms are very clean, simple and comfortable, all with small but modern and spotless bathrooms. They took us in when there was a mix-up over our booking elsewhere, gave us a free upgrade to a larger top-floor room and have very kind. No restaurant at present due to COVID but there are plenty of cafes and bars within 5 minutes. Highly recommended.

michael

Take the time! It is outstanding! If short on time, the bishop’s quarters are the most amazing.