Camino de Santiago

Day 37 on the Camino de Santiago: Ponferrada to Villafranca de Bierzo

We’re back in grape growing country.  And much of our walk today was through old and new vineyards. Together with the yellows of autumn in the poplars, willows, and oaks they made for a   beautiful autumn walk. 

Autumn is here

The way markers were sometimes easy to find.

Way marker near Cacebelos


I think Puck sometimes had a hand in placing them.

Way marker near Villafranca

Although the yellow of the marker pops in this photo it was  difficult to spot when we were trying to find our way.

Actually, Puck was on my mind a bit during today’s walk. I imagined him giggling at the prospect of sparks, even fireworks, from the positioning of this particular storks’ nest near our morning coffee stop.

Protected or not, this seems risky

At nearby  Fuentes Nuevas the church volunteer waved out to us rather insistenly. She wanted us to visit the church, and to stamp our credential.  I’m glad we complied. The retablo was beautiful – it does have its share of gold, although not too much. But, for me, this fresco stole the show.

Fresco in FuentesNuevas


At first glance I thought the pilgrim statue had a puckish air. I mistook the set of his hat for jaunty. It was only later, when I had a closer look at my photo, that I realised he was bone weary and injured, not unlike a lot of us along the way today.

Pilgrim statue in the church

The approach to Villafranca is among the most beautiful yet. The town is filled with ancient churches, ancient buildings, and it has a castle.

Road into Villafranca at dusk


 I was pleased, relieved might be the better word, to reach our albergue. It’s at the far end of the town and we needed Google’s help to find it – the map in our guidebook proving puckishly unreliable. 

Albergue Leon in Villafranca


Tomorrow we’re planning to walk 20ks to Herrerias.

6 replies »

  1. I’m loving the fall part of your walk. This is my favorite time of year, so it’s nice to see the change in color and cooler temps. That town looks very cute. And I love the fresco in FuentesNuevas. I admit I got a little sidetracked on your blog reading about books you’ve read. Thanks for all the great suggestions. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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