Santiago de Compostela Travel Guide

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Santiago de Compostela Highlights

  • Pro
    into-thin-air profile photo

    into-thin-air says…

     The further west we walked, the Better this walk got !!! 

  • Con
    xanaia profile photo

    xanaia says…

     The rain!!!! Oh my goodness how much it rains!!! But when the weather is fine, Santiago, and Galicia in general, is a paradise 

  • In a nutshell
    nulain profile photo

    nulain says…

     The spirit of medieval times lives on with the pilgrimage to Santiago de Compostela. 

Santiago de Compostela Things to Do

  • Cathedral

    Botafumeiro is the giant incense burner which was originally used to fumigate the sweaty pilgrims and according to popular beliefs is also helped against eye diseases. First Botafumeiro appeared here in XIII century. It was replaced by another one presented by the King of France Luis XI. Unfortunately this silver Botafumeiro was stolen by the...

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  • Cathedral Museum

    Gelmirez (or Xelmirez in Galician) Palace is the part of Cathedral Museum. Entrance to that part of museum is situated in the Northern Nave of Cathedral. So, just enter Cathedral through the gates of glory, then turn left and will easily find the entrance. The palace is the Romanesque civilian building attached to the Cathedral and named after...

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  • Church of San Martino Pinario

    Monastery of San Martiño Pinario was the largest and most influential Benedictine monastery in Galicia and the second largest in all Spain after El Escorial. Its museum includes a visit to the church, which stands out among the city's churches due to its impressive baldachin and choir stalls (the Renaissance upper choir is from the 17th century and...

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Santiago de Compostela Hotels

Santiago de Compostela Restaurants

  • Try "ahorcadilos" , a macabre desert

    In Santo Domino de la Calzada you will find a very special kind of a sweet desert that reflects the so-called chicken-miracle of this place ! ( I explained the chicken-miracle in one of the tips about the cathedral.) "ahorcadilos" is the name of this macabre desert, take a look at my main picture here and you will see a "hanged man" surrounded by...

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  • a tiny cafe/bar along the Camino

    This is a good example of a small cafe along the Camino, where someone had the idea to start a business along the Camino, where more than 100.000 peregrinos/pilgrims will pass by throughout each year and there is almost no other place to take a rest for quite some distance.It might have been the school-house once as the building looks like a...

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  • a great cafe and soon also an albergue

    Parada del Peregrino is the name of a cafe/restaurant along the Camino in Pieros (a village right after Cacabelos that is not listed as a seperate VT-location). That cafe is brand new and the local lady (obviously the owner) spoke also very well german, she has spent some time in Austria.Take a look at my extra-pics as well, they have seats and...

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Santiago de Compostela Nightlife

  • Essence of nighttime in Santiago

    A bar which fulfills all my requirements for a late drinkA mixed crowd of people enjoying themselves and their companya good taste in music which still allows conversationAn enjoyable drink The dress code seemed to be free and easy

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  • Rua das Hortas

    This tiny street starting at the other corner of Obradoiro Square is also famous for its bars and clubs. It is specially crowded in weekends during the University months.It is called so (Veggies garden street) becaude there used to be many of those in this area. In fact, if you enter some side alleys you will still find potatoes and carrots here...

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  • Rua do Franco

    This pedestrian street is lively with many bars and terraces both by day and night. It is located in the old town, starting in the right corner of the Obradoiro square (if you look to the cathedral from the square).Locals who come here for some drinks say they are "going to do the Paris-Dakar": there is a bar in the first block called "Paris" and...

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Santiago de Compostela Transportation

  • Bus from the Airport

    Bus between the airport and Plaza de Galicia in Santiago, stopping at different points Pazo de Congresos, Capilla San Lázaro, the bus station, the railway station, Rúa da Rosa. € 3 one way and € 5,1o retur.

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  • To Santiago by bus

    I took the direct bus from Porto Airport ; no-one at the info desk knew about the bus, but it operated (Lisbon-Santiago); departure 9.45; don't believe people who say that there is no such a connection. The bus was almost empty (not surprising considering the lack of info), air-conditioned, with a very helpful driver.

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  • by bus to Astorga

    I came by bus to Astorga and the central busstation is just a few steps from the epicopal palace, the cathedral and the medieval townwall, so you actually dont need a streetmap to find your way as a tourist or peregrino.Buses in Spain are really cheap like you see in my picture: from Belorado to Burgos i just payed 3,01 euros one way and the funny...

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Santiago de Compostela Shopping

  • all you need for the Camino

    I found this shop close to the main sqare of Astorga. All of the employees there spoke german as well, that was quite helpful when it comes to details.And they also helped me a lot regarding the parcel that I intended to send "poste restante" to Santiago with 3 kg of equipment that I did not really need anymore. I bought a "camelbag" that is a...

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  • a good supermarket & cafe

    This is a shop like you see it unfortunately not at many places - so conveniently directely along the Camino: It is a supermarket and it also has some tables opposite of the shop, where you can get snacks, coffee or breakfast.I asked the shop-owner what time he will open in the morning for breakfast and he said 08.00am ! And then he gave me an...

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  • a small supermarket

    Right in the centre of Rabnal del Camino you will even find a small shop for food and goods of everyday life - that is quite unusual for a village with just a bit more than 70 inhabitants ! Of course it is only open by the ordinary spanish openingtimes, BUT I am sure, after a few days on the Camino you are used to them and to the long siesta in the...

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Santiago de Compostela Local Customs

  • Iconography of St JAMES.

    The oldest figurations of St James show him as an Apostle, a book or parchment in the hand. He appears in that figuration on the Portico of the Glory.The most widespread Iconography is that of St Jacques pilgrim with stick and gourd as represented in Capilla Mayor of the cathedral.Another image, equestrian and military of the Apostle gained in...

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  • Los Caballeros de Santiago - Order of St...

    Originally, this order consisted of Galician's who, by 1160, worried about the residence of the pilgrims on the road leading to Compostela. Some were canons, the others formed a laymen's brotherhood of knights.Their military action began far from Santiago, because they were entrusted with the protection of Caceres, in Estremadura, only just...

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  • The "Camino" - Return of tradition.

    While the old continent moved to a strong secularization, Santiago (St James) of Compostela attracts more and more christian and agnostic walkers who wish to make the long way of St James in a purpose of spiritual renewal. The "Camino Frances", 800 km from the Roncesvalles near the French border, one month of marching, is the most known but there...

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Santiago de Compostela Warnings and Dangers

  • a pickpocket-lady??

    It happened to me, while I was waiting to get inside the bus at the bus-station of Santo Domingo de la Calzada: I was the 3rd person in the line waiting to pay to the driver and to get inside the bus and all of a sudden a lady was standing besides the bus, next to the person ahead of me like she would try to skip the long line of people, who queued...

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  • Safe if you use your common sense

    One thing I like about Spain is the friendly family atmosphere that occurs after dark. I found myselt walking back to my Hotel in the evening at 11ish...and there were still lots of families out enjoying the cool air. Its just a really neat vibe. Of course I didnt venture down and dark alleys and stuck to the main paths...but I never had a...

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  • Windwheels & winds galore

    While stepping up the path to Alto de Perdon you will see lots of windwheels from the distance and the closer you get there the stronger the winds will get !Fix your hat with a string or you might loose it, when strong winds blow it away. I saw many baseball-caps beeing lost in the winds while walking the Camino and the best kind of hiking-hat also...

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Santiago de Compostela Tourist Traps

  • A kind of Tourist trap

    Do you want to take a pic with a dog dressed like Santigo Saint?Well you have to pay for that! The price was 100 pesetas (old currency) , now certainly it will be at least 1 euro (new currency) .I saw this in other place! it was in Mallorca Island.

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  • Tourist Town !!!

    The Small Town of O Cebreiro is set High in the Mountains at 1300 metres and the views from up there are Stunning, Unfortunately it is now on ALL the Bus Tours from the surrounding area and this Beautiful Little Town now gets totally over-run with tourists, the Bars and Restaurants are crowded and somewhat unfriendly which is a Great Pity as it...

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  • The Refugio at Manjarin

    This Refugio is set in an Absolutely Stunning Location just 2k after The Cruz de Ferro and was once apparently a " Must " place to stay as the guy who runs it " Thomas " has devoted his life to looking after pilgrims who have just crossed the Pass. Unfortunately now the place seems to be full of hanger's on and it sounds like Thomas has lost the...

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Santiago de Compostela What to Pack

  • 2 nights in January

    Travel light! I travelled on the Airport bus, which drops You off in Plaza Do Irman Gomez. I didn't have a map, and ended up taking a long diversion to my hotel! A day sac for carrying camera etc. Comfy shoes - Theres a lot to see in Santiago De Compostela. Many of the streets are cobbled.Wet Weather gear- This area is notorious for its rain....

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  • Keep your Rucksack Safe -- Keep your kit...

    If you are travelling Anywhere and using a Rucksack / Backpack as your luggage then I would Strongly recommend that you use some form of Rucksack / Backpack Pro-tector !!This tip is from my own personal experience, as I have had Big Problems having my Rucksack damaged or even destroyed by airlines, particularly on Airport Carousels,What can happen...

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  • Rain

    Santiago is located in a very rainy season, so you can expect rain most of the year when you come. Weather in summer is not cold, but neither hot, maybe een a bit chilly in the evenings...

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Santiago de Compostela Off The Beaten Path

  • Daytrip to Lugo

    The town is surrounded by a clompletly intact roman wall from the 3. century and a big part of the inner city looks still like in the middle ages.From Santiago there are buses every 2 hours taking either 1,5 or 2 hours the slower one is more interresting going through small towns along the N-547 and the airport, the faster one along N-634 and the...

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  • 550km - a museum & a strange lady

    I had a whole afternoon in Santo Domingo de la Calzada and when I passed by this museum about the Camino I wanted to take a look inside, BUT the lady at the reception was "on the telephone" and did not find the time to sell me a ticket while she was chatting with somebody....and this is why I decided to leave there again after 5 minutes of...

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  • Casa de Lorenzo de Tejada

    VThe Casa de Lorenzo de Tejada is dating back to the year 1621 and it is one of the most beautiful and elaborate secular buildings of Santo Domingo de la Calzada. You will find this building not far from the Campanile of the cathedral, in the main road to the cathedral that is also the Camino.From OUTside it does not look very special, but it has...

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Santiago de Compostela Sports & Outdoors

  • into-thin-air's Profile Photo
    A Relaxed Rob !!!!

    by into-thin-air Written Jan 10, 2004

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    When walking the Camino de Santiago, especially towards the end of the walk as you approach Santiago de Compostela, Some people fall into the trap of turning the walk into a Route-March !! The reason for this is the shortage of beds as you approach your goal -- I have seen some Pilgrims getting up at 04.00 in the morning to start their daily walk JUST to ensure that they have a bed that night !! But think of All that Beautiful Scenery you miss by walking in the Dark -- My advice is to Relax a little as things usually work out ok in the end !!!!!!

    Related to:
    • Backpacking
    • Hiking and Walking
    • Religious Travel

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Santiago de Compostela Favorites

  • General Info

    Tourist Offices:* Turismo de Santiago de CompostelaRúa do Vilar, 6315705 Santiago de Compostela (Spain)- Tel.: (+34) 981.55 51 29- Fax: (+34) 981.55 47 48- Internet: www.santiagoturismo.com- E. mail: info@santi-agoturismo.com* Oficina de Información Turística de GaliciaRúa do Vilar, 8 - Tel.: (981) 58 40 81- Internet: www.turgalicia.es- E mail:...

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  • The Weather in Santiago de Compostela

    Useful links:- In Spanish- In English- In Spanish

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  • Cathedral

    enjoy the winding streets of the old town but make sure you don't queue for hours for the cathedral if you are carrying a backpack... they will not let you in. Sharing tapas with friends in Los Caracoles

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Explore Deeper into Santiago de Compostela
Monasterio de San Paio de Antealtares
Things to Do
Colegio de Fonesca
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Praza do Obradoiro - Square of the Stonecutters
Things to Do
Hostal de los Reyes Catolicos
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Pazo de Raxoi
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Alameda Park
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Organ
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Colexio de Fonseca
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Botafumeiro
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Chapel of Saint Peter
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Museo das Peregrinacións (Pilgrimage Museum)
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Historical downtown
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Monastery of San Martiño Pinario
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Puerta Santa or Holy Doors. Inside of Cathedral
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Puerta Santa or Holy Doors
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Chapel of Santa María de la Corticela
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Gelmirez Palace.
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Church of San Martiño Pinario
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The College of St. Jerome
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Permanent Collection. Chapel of Relics.
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Permanent Collection. Second Floor. The tombs.
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Permanent Collection. Second Floor. The Cloister
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Permanent Collection. Third Floor.
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Permanent Collection. First Floor.
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Choirs of Master Mateo. Permanent Collection.
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Church of San Bieito do Campo
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Igrexa das Animas. Church of the Souls.
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General views at monastery
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Church of San Paio
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The Church of San Paio Interior
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Church of Santa María Salomé
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Church of Santa María Salomé. Interior.
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Collegiate church of Santa Maria la Real de Sar. I
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Collegiate church of Santa Maria la Real de Sar.II
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Church of Santa Maria la Real de Sar. Interior.
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Church of Santa Maria la Real de Sar. Tombs.
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Museo do Pobo Galego. The Andrade's Staircase.
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Museo do Pobo Galego (Museum of Galician People)
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Convento St. Domingo de Bonaval. Pantheon.
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Convento Santo Domingo de Bonaval. The Cloisters.
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Map of Santiago de Compostela

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