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Santiago de Compostela/Galicia for 2 days--suggestions?

Santiago de Compostela/Galicia for 2 days--suggestions?

Aug 30th, 2009, 02:45 AM
  #1  
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Santiago de Compostela/Galicia for 2 days--suggestions?

I plan to go to Galicia for 2 days after a Portugal river cruise. I end the cruise on Sept 18, 2010. I end the cruise in Porto, and getting to Santiago de Compostela would be easy. There will be 8 of us, so we can rent a van or take a public bus.

I was in Santiago several years ago for an overnight, and I know that I want to spend some time there again with my friends. I think we'll stay overnight in Santiago. But we have another day (maybe 2) that we can spend in the area, and I'd appreciate any suggestions. Example:
--Should we stay in Sangiago de C a second night but use day #2 for a day trip? Where to?
--Should we depart Santiago on day #2 and head elsewhere for the night? What to see/do on the way? Where should we go?
--If we do a third day, any suggestions?
The important thing is that we end up in a city from which it will be easy to fly back to the USA.
Thanks for any hellp you can give me. I want this to be a good use of two or three days, and I'm not terribly familiar with this part of Spain.
sueswny is offline  
Aug 30th, 2009, 04:34 AM
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Renting a “van” or as we say a small bus and not wanting to return it to Portugal will be either impossible, very hard to find such a service and if you do very expensive. You should take either the bus or train. The bus has more services per day than the train.

SdC is not Galicia and if you have seen it before why return as there is so much more to see.

I live in Galicia and can make a 1000+ suggestions but it really depend on several things. Your group’s interests, time of year and method of transport. Seeing you are here around mid September then maybe a few days sunbathing will be out. But a nice stroll along an almost deserted beach would be good, especially just before the evening meal.
Given that you may not have your own vehicle would you consider using trains or buses?
From any of the three Galician airports you can get a flight to Madrid to get back to the States.

The one website I can recommend a for first stop is www.turgalicia.es here you can see all the major sights and download files with tourist information. Accommodation is also listed.
ribeirasacra is offline  
Aug 30th, 2009, 04:41 AM
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Stay in Santiago and day trip from there if need be. During September the weather will still be pleasant for day trips to the Atlantic coast; Pontevedra, Ribeira, Cangas; great views and even better food. That said, Santiago is a wonderful citythat ought to be explore at a relaxed pace. Two days is just about perfect.
Viajero2 is offline  
Aug 30th, 2009, 05:16 AM
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My last trip to Santiago, my flight left Santiago at about 7:00 AM and got me to Madrid in time for an 11:00 AM Flight (Continental Airlines) back home to Newark.

Ribeirasacra gave you some good advice re.: Van rental. You could take a Train, but they are uncomfortable, infrequent and slow; so MotorCoach is probably your best bet.

I usually stay in Vigo and commute to Santiago on TRD: it's about an hour and a half. You can reserve seats on TRD's, and I believe they are air conditioned. But my last night I spend in Santiago. Taxi Rates are fixed by Xunta de Galicia and they are strictly enforced. I 'book' my Taxi the day before departure and they haven't failed me yet for a 5:30AM pickup.
NEDSIRELAND is offline  
Aug 30th, 2009, 09:46 AM
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I go every year for 3 days to Santiago-I can't get enough of it!I wander/relax and find new things to see/do.The public market is great fun and the cathedral mass at noon is a must-especially if the nun sings-beautiful voice- and they swing the incense burner!
An easy worthwhile day trip from Santiago is to take the modern train to Pontevedra.
I love the tiny Santiago airport and the flight back to Madrid is less than an hour!
chapla is offline  
Aug 30th, 2009, 09:57 AM
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Here is wonderful hotel which for some reason has not caught on with American and Brit tourists.

http://www.booking.com/hotels/hotel/...641a234f796af8

We have been there many times and as many have said, enjoy at leisurely pace. Vigo is quite interesting.
Aduchamp1 is offline  
Aug 30th, 2009, 03:02 PM
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Chapla, I'm like you! I have visited Santiago 3 times, starting in 2002 and always have stayed for 4-5 days. I never get enough of it!

Sueswny, I suggest you stay the 2 days in Santiago and do a day trip from there. Checking in and out of hotels and the accompanying logistics will eat into your limited time.
Also, as has been mentioned, the airport is very efficient and easy , as well as close to the city.
cruiseluv is offline  
Aug 31st, 2009, 11:06 AM
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If you like mussels, you can go out on a boat from O Grove (on the coast east of Santiago) and be served platters of steamed mussels. Fantastic!
caitg is offline  
Aug 31st, 2009, 10:57 PM
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oops .. west of Santiago!
caitg is offline  
Sep 1st, 2009, 04:32 PM
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Aduchamp-This summer I stayed at A Tafona do peregrino and loved it!They succeeded in blending the old structure with the most modern furnishings.My room was on the second floor facing the back with a wonderful view of the park and the church.Very quiet with a wonderfull long terrace balcony.The owner and staff were charming.
This place is the best I've stayed in after my many visits to Santiago! The air conditioning was great to have because the days this summer were so hot.I also liked the fact that it is a little away from the crowds-across the road from the open air market and so I could wander into areas that I had never seen. There's also a great bakery a couple of doors down! The price was a great deal!
chapla is offline  
Sep 19th, 2009, 06:53 AM
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Thanks for all the good advice. But a further question....
I might end up hiring a driver for a day trip. Where would you suggest that we go? To Rias Altas? Rias Bajas? Another route? And if we spend some time in another city, where do you recommend? Between Pontevedra and Vigo, which is more interesting/historic/atmospheric?? Again, thanks!
sueswny is offline  
Sep 19th, 2009, 07:01 AM
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Hi sueswny,

Can't comment about Vigo, I haven't been there. On our last trip to Santiago we took the train to Pontevedra and spent a few hours walking around and having lunch before returning to Santiago.

On another trip we went on an organized tour to Finisterre and the Costa do Morte. On the way there we stopped in Noia and Muros (Rias Baixas) . It was really picturesque.

Out of curiosity, how is your group getting from Porto to Santiago?
cruiseluv is offline  
Sep 19th, 2009, 07:51 AM
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Chapla

You described A Tafona do peregrino perfectly. I assume the price is lower since it is about a 15 walk to the Cathedral. But to me this was an asset.
Aduchamp1 is offline  
Sep 19th, 2009, 03:15 PM
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sue, I think it is not a choice of where is best but where you can find a driver. Yes that can be found but they are not so common if you are hiring what is normally called a bus.
The best places to find a driver and vehicle will be in Vigo, A Coruña or SdC. The driver you hire should have a good idea of where to go to, if he/she is worth their money that is.

There is no city between Vigo and Pontevedra. There are only small towns and villages only. The later is better but then you need a driver, is there one in this city?
ribeirasacra is offline  
Sep 20th, 2009, 10:45 AM
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We will get from Porto to Santiago probably with a van and driver. I found a tour agency online that will provide the transportation for us. Or I'll get a day tour (through something like Viator) from Porto to Santiago, but just not do the return to Porto.

I might decide to just take the train to Pontevedra for a half day, or take the organized day tour to Finisterre.

I have contacted the tourist office in Santiago de Compostela to ask about local guides and tour companies that might do something custom for us. I'm waiting their reply.

I think that no matter what we do, it will be a good couple of days. I will let you all know how it goes once it's over and done.
sueswny is offline  
Sep 20th, 2009, 11:51 AM
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If you end up renting a vehicle in Portugal you could return it to Porto's airport and fly from there. If you drop off a car rented in Portugal and in Spain there will be a large drop off fee.Or you can pick up your rental in Spain as we did. We had our hotel in Porto find us a driver to take us over the border to the first Spanish car rental agency which was in Vigo at the train station.( we dropped off in Spain sevearla weeks later.) The cost of the trip acorss the border wasn't terribly expensive but he was a driver not an English speaking guide. We had been quoted much higher rates before we left the US for Portugal..
We loved Santiago de Compostela and wished we had more time there than two nights. We also enjoyed the coast including beautiful Baiona and O Grove as mentioned by another poster.
HappyTrvlr is offline  
Sep 20th, 2009, 11:53 AM
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correction: second sentence,not "in Spain" but "and drop it off in Spain"
HappyTrvlr is offline  
Sep 20th, 2009, 12:04 PM
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http://www.badalada.es/promocion.php
Here's someone who will take a maximum of 8 on tours out of Santiago.
I took the train from Santiago to Pontevedra in the morning, walked around in the old section-great parador-had lunch and was back early in the afternoon.The train was great-modern train with lovely scenery-easy/cheap enough to do on your own.The Galicia tourist office in Santiago has maps,train schedules etc.Their office is a couple of minutes awat from the Santiago tourist office.
chapla is offline  
Sep 21st, 2009, 01:45 AM
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chapla...did you notice that the offer was for 2008, was we are nearly into 2010 I wonder what the fees are now some 2 years on?
Officially guides have to be registered in Galicia so doing what sus is doing and contacting turgalicia is the best thing to do.
ribeirasacra is offline  
Sep 21st, 2009, 03:47 AM
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Aduchamp, I just made a cancellable reservation at your hotel for July 2010. Sinc eit is for the days around the Jacobeo events it is 120 euros/night no breakfast. Other times I believe it is about 60-80 euros/double.

Thanks for the link! But I did call them directly in the end.
lincasanova is offline  
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