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Salamanca to Santiago

Old Sep 20th, 2008, 09:37 PM
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Salamanca to Santiago

Need suggestions for stops on drive from Salamanca to Santiago de Compostelo. It's a long drive and would love to make some stops enroute. Maribel if you are reading this, would love to hear your suggestions also.

Thanks,
Pam
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Old Sep 20th, 2008, 11:01 PM
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Hi pgoody,
Yes, that drive from Salamanca to Santiago de Compostela is a long one (should take about 5 hrs.) but there are a multitude of interesting, even fascinating stops along the route, but it would be helpful to know which route you plan to take.

The shortest route is from Benavente to Verín to Ourense, Vigo and up to Santiago, says viamichelin.com.

The other, longer way, would take you along the Pilgrims's Road to Santiago, which would go through Astorga, Ponferrada, Lugo up to A Coruña then down to S de C. But that's about a 6 hr. or so drive.

If you've decided on the "low road", there are fewer options to tempt you that aren't so time consuming:

Zamora: for its monument, church filled Old Quarter. Coffee stop at the historic Parador, a 15th century Renaissance Palace.

Puebla de Sanabria: compact, attractive little town, also with a pleasant Parador for another rest your legs, a walk around the town and refreshment stop. In my coffee table book of Most Picturesque Villages of Spain

ditto to
Ribadavia: very atmospheric, on the River Minho, producer of Ribeiro wines, ancient Jewish quarter with a Hebrew bakery run by doña Herminia
see
http://tinyurl.com/4yjlme

Combarro, a quick detour from the AP 9, just west of Pontevedra (which is a lovely small city with atmospheric Old Quarter, but takes up too much time to do on the fly).
Combarro has Galicia's largest collection of hórreos, the rectangular stone granaries on pillars with crosses on top of the slate roofs-they kind of resemble little chapels.

I could go on and on once in the Vigo to Santiago area, but maybe you;ll have time for a great day trip to the Rias Baixas, Pontevedra, isle of La Toja, etc. from Santiago.

I remember your question about guided tours to Jewish sites in Barcelona, so I wouldn't miss out on seeing Ribadavia.
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Old Sep 21st, 2008, 06:40 AM
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Perfect Maribel, thank you...this is exactly what I was looking for!

Pam
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Old Sep 21st, 2008, 09:57 AM
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The drive will be more than 5 hours. And the route (via Ourense) is mainly on Autopistas (or Freeways in American English).The road is non tolled except the bit between Ourense and SdC. The present toll is just under €5 per car. For me that route is not very interesting. We agree with the suggestion about Ribadavia. However the castle is never open, or at least it seems that way.

My preferred suggestion is to go via Astorga and onto to Lugo. From Lugo you can take the National roads to Lugo, without fitting your way around A Coruña. If you take the road from A Coruña to SdC it is a toll road. This time the fee is quite expensive, something like €12 per car.

Forget driving around Vigo, it is worse than A Coruña and in MHO is just not worth it. Again a toll road from Vigo to SdC. Sorry do not know the fees this time.
If you want countryside then I can give you further suggestions.

Sorry to point this out but the Minho is not spelt this way. Here in Galicia, and the rest of Spain it is spelt Miño. Maybe you do not have the tilde on your PC but please drop the H.

Thanks
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Old Sep 21st, 2008, 11:49 AM
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Hi ribeira sacra,
I was going to recommend the Astorga-Lugo route to Pam but thought it would take her considerably longer with all the really interesting and tempting stopping-off possibilities along the way, some related to the Camino.

When I checked viamichelin.com it estimated 4 hr. 50 min., with preferred route through Ourense, while their estimate through Lugo was longer.

But I now see checking guiacampsa.com that their estimated times both through Lugo and Ourense are virtually identical-5 hrs. 48 min.

Then it appears guiacampsa gives the more accurate driving time.



Yes, I do have the tilde on my Mac-don't use a PC. So Miño it is! O
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Old Sep 21st, 2008, 12:21 PM
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Pam
Both route planning sites I mentioned above handily give tolls and estimated fuel costs along with driving distances and times.
Guiacampsa (for Spain/Portugal only) does have an English page
www.repsol.com/es_en/

but when doing the route planning, it jumps back to guiacampsa in Spanish.
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Old Sep 21st, 2008, 11:46 PM
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Maribel
I use Guiacampsa as a link on my web site.
Maybe Pam will let us know what they do.
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Old Sep 22nd, 2008, 02:30 AM
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If you take the route from Ourense that parallels the Miño valley, stop in la Guardia to visit Monte Santa Tecla, a protected national Historic site, with a Castreño (or Celtic) village from the 3rd or 4th Century.

We also had a great seafood meal at a restaurant on the malecon, across from the Fishermen's Monument.

I also found the coast road from la Guardia to Baiona much more scenic than the autopista. And in Baiona there's the Parador: Castillo del Conde de Gondomar.

My comment on the tilde: it's not an element in Galego/Portugues; so Minho is fine, as are other words in Galego that lose the Castellano tilde in favor of an 'h.'
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Old Sep 22nd, 2008, 10:23 AM
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Hi NED,
Yep, I spelled the river in Portuguese-had the other side of the river valley on the brain!

Like alvarinho on the Portuguese side-alvariño on the Spanish!

Pam is planning to do the long drive from Salamanca to Santiago in one day.

That's why I think that she should limit her stops and that day not try to venture over west to Baiona and on down to A Guarda before driving up to Santiago. I'm just afraid it would be too time consuming for her that day.

Coming from Ourense she can avoid getting stuck in the heavy traffic of Vigo by driving north on the N 550 from O Porriño up to catch the AP 9 to Santiago-according to the Michelin and Campsa maps.

But I too, certainly do recommend that drive west to Baiona and south to A Guarda and even on into Portugal for another day or another journey! NED, I couldn't agree with you more. You're absolutely right-it's a great, scenic drive with lots of nice sightseeing stops.
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Old Sep 22nd, 2008, 10:54 AM
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Yike, Make the alBariño¡
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Old Sep 23rd, 2008, 08:02 AM
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Sorry to say the Galicians do not Spell the Miño with an H. My address has the word Miño in it (spelt the same way).
Also if you look at this link. It is for a viewpoint near to me. http://www.turgalicia.es/sit/ficha_d...idi=G&premium=
This link is for the Galician version of the page. On the top you can click on various languages. Miño is spelt the same way.
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Old Sep 30th, 2008, 02:56 PM
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okay, so now I'm totally confused. I was all set to go the Zamora, puebla de Sanabria and Ribadavia route. We don't have time for long visits to any of these places as unfortunately we have to do this drive in one day. I wish we had months to see everything but we don't. We'll just be able to get a flavor along the way, so 'm not going to dwell on this right now. As it is we won't arrive in Santiago probably until the evening which gives us only a full day and other evening to explore that city. We'll be staying at the Parador. Besides the cathedral what are the other "must sees" in Santiago?
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Old Sep 30th, 2008, 04:16 PM
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pgoody,
The reason I suggested the Zamora-Puebla de Sanabria-Ribadavia route is for all the reasons you've just mentioned (and I remember your next destination, Luces in Asturias and your time in Barcelona).

You're making this drive in one day, simply don't have time for many temptations to linger, any lengthy sightseeing or in-depth tours of regions, and you'll want to arrive in Santiago, find your way to your hotel, park and enjoy the city that evening. Then one more full day.

I still say that it will be easier for you to take the "low road" with just 2 of those 3 stops, and of course, avoid industrial and heavy trafficked Vigo.

In Santiago, in addition to the Cathdral and its museum, you might choose among these, fitting in whatever your time allows:

the Galician Folk Museum (Museo do Pobo Galego)

the pilgrims' museum (Museo das Peregrinacions)

evening stroll through the atmospheric streets of the old quarter (Rúa do Franco, Rúa do Vilar, etc)

take a look at the Parador-Hostal dos Reis Católicos (but you may be staying there!)

maybe the next morning, peek in at the lively indoor market (Mercado de Abastos-closed Sun) on Praza de Abastos

Romanesque cloister of the Colexiata do Sar.

These suggestions, of course, are just for you to choose from, given your time to do them.
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Old Oct 1st, 2008, 06:06 AM
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Thanks Maribel. I do agree with you about the drive to Santiago, so we will keep our plans the way they are. Yes, we are staying at the Parador- Hostal de Reis Catolicos. We will be there Friday night and Saturday night so we will definitely put the market on our list. Thanks for your other suggestions. Do you think that its worth taking a half-day tour of the city or would we be better off seeing the city on our own?
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Old Oct 1st, 2008, 03:04 PM
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Hi Pam,
Because Santiago is so compact, I think you'd be fine just wandering the Old Quarter and seeing the city on your own. Armed with a city map from the Parador's front desk staff and a bit of their orientation or a map and orientation from the excellent tourist office, you should be able to do this well on your own.

Lucky you, being in Santiago on the weekend! The market is located near the University. Notice how the women sit and patiently separate the little green peppers, pimientos de Padrón. They´re so delicious-simply fried up with some coarse salt-delicious!

Hope you enjoy your stay in Salamanca, Santiago, Luces (Asturias), Barcelona and wherever else you're headed! October is a great month for northern Spain.
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Old Oct 2nd, 2008, 03:10 AM
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To make a comment about your journey ‘up north’ forget to stop off at all of the three places you have listed, as you simply will not have time. Choose one and do that.
As Maribel says do not take a tour as SdC is compact. However if you want some sort of explanation about what is what you can hire MP3 players from the tourist office.
Of you are travelling the weekend of the 12th it is a public holiday so they will be more than the usual amount of traffic on the roads. Allow time for this.

Enjoy Galicia and come back soon as there is far more to this part of Spain then just SdC.

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