Cycling the Camino de Santiago - León to Santiago
The Camino de Santiago across northern Spain is one of the world's oldest pilgrimage routes. Gothic cathedrals, medieval monasteries, and miles of unspoiled rural scenery are just some of the attractions that draw visitors from around the world annually to make this historic trek. We designed our ride from León to Santiago for those of you who don't have the time to commit to our longer 15-day ride along the Camino; it is also a slightly easier tour with a 301 level rating.View Day-by-Day ItineraryHide Day-by-Day Itinerary
Day 1: Arrive León, Spain
Highlights: Former capital of Spain, visit the Cathedral without Walls, introductory dinner
We'll meet this afternoon at our hotel in León, just a few meters away from the "Cathedral without Walls." This splendid example of Spanish gothic architecture is renowned for its marvelous stained glass windows. After fitting bikes this afternoon, you can explore town and visit the local sites. Then, we'll gather this evening for dinner together in a traditional Spanish wine bodega and meet others of the group.
Distance: Test Ride. Meals: D
Lodging: Hotel NH Plaza Mayor
Day 2: Bicycle León to Astorga
Highlights: Visit to cathedral and palace designed by Antonio Gaudí
Our destination today is Astorga, home of the 15th-century cathedral and neo-Gothic palace designed by the famous Catalan architect Antonio Gaudí. You'll have time to explore both this afternoon after our arrival.
Distance: 60 km (37 miles). Meals: B
Lodging: Hotel Via de la Plata
Day 3: Astorga to Cacabelos
Highlights: Scenic cycling through the Spanish countryside, Cruz de Ferro (Don't forget to bring your pebble from home!)
Leaving Astorga, we pedal toward the hills that separate the provinces of León and Galicia. As you pass through tiny hamlets and monuments untouched since early Christianity, it's easy to imagine the awe that original pilgrims making this trek must have felt. By mid-afternoon, we'll arrive at our destination in Cacabelos.
Distance: 75 km (47 miles).Meals: B, D
Lodging: Hotel Villa de Cacabelos
Day 4: Cacabelos to Tricastela
Highlights: Countryside of Galicia, historic Villafranca del Bierzo, hiking option
We head into the green fields of Galicia today. On the way, you'll pass through the old Camino town of Villafranca del Bierzo, founded by French pilgrims as a place of absolution for those too weak to continue their pilgrimage. There is the opportunity to cut the ride short and do an optional 8km (5 miles) hike so be sure to pack sneakers or light hikers if you are interested as the trail is fairly steep. Our hotel this evening is in Tricastela.
Distance: 37 km (23miles), or 8 km (5 miles) hiking. Meal: B, D
Lodging: Casa Pacios.
Day 5: Bicycle Tricastela to Portomarín
Highlights: Galician culture and countryside
You will get a real taste of Galicia today - a region with a culture and musical style reminiscent of Ireland - as we pedal our way to Portomarín, where our hotel overlooks the Minho River.
Distance: 70 km (43 miles). Meals
Lodging: Santa Mariña
Day 6: Portomarín to Touro
Highlights: ride over rolling hills, overnight in country manor and B&B
One of the prettiest rides on the tour awaits you today as we meander along forgotten country roads through the beautiful Galician countryside. Rolling hills and green pastures lead us to our destination for the evening near Touro, where we'll stay in one of the traditional country houses (similar to B&Bs) that dot the landscape.
Distance: 77 km (48 miles). Meals: B, D
Lodging: June 26th departure will be at Pazo de Andeade. Other departures will stay at the Casa Brandariz.
Day 7: Santiago de Compostela
Highlights: Arrival in Santiago, Cathedral of St. James, farewell dinner
Today's ride is a fitting end to the Camino, as we pedal along rural roads through woodlands and pastures to Santiago. Once in town, you'll have plenty of time to look around the famous Cathedral of St. James that forms the city's heart. Tonight, we'll celebrate our journey's end with a great farewell dinner together.
Distance: 39 km (24 miles). Meals: B, D
Lodging: Monumental San Francisco. The June 5th departure will at the Parador de Santiago.
Day 8: Tour ends in Santiago de Compostela, Spain
Highlights: Pilgrim's Mass at noon
Remember that you may not get to Santiago in time for the Pilgrim's Mass at noon on Day 7 so if you'd like to participate plan travel accordingly. There is plenty of Spain left to explore. The Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao is not far away and neither is the Minho Wine region that separates Spain from Portugal. Thanks for joining us and buen viaje!
HighlightsCathedral of St. James, Spanish castles and cathedrals, Continue a Thousand-year-old tradition, León, Basilica de San Isidoro, Pilgrim's PassportKeep in Mind: We work hard to maintain consistency across all of our tours, but some trips have unique differences. Here are some things to keep in mind about this tour.
IncludesUse of a quality 27-30 speed bicycle; 8 days, 7 nights accommodation, 6 dinners with wine, all breakfasts plus "The Usual""The Usual" (Included with every ExperiencePlus! tour)
Begin/EndLeón/Santiago de Compostela
Arrive/DepartMadrid-Barajas Airport (MAD) / Santiago de Compostela Airport (SCQ) or Madrid
Total Distance360 km (222 miles)
Daily Distance60 km (37 miles)
Rating301 Rolling terrain on most days. Two days have sustained climbs for approximately 5 - 8 miles.
TermsTerms & Conditions
Dates Price Single Supplement Notes Jun 5-12, 2015 $3795 $550 Guaranteed to Go Book it Jun 26-Jul 3, 2015 $3795 $550 Guaranteed to Go Book it Sep 4-11, 2015 $3795 $550 Guaranteed to Go Book it
* We are happy to match solo travelers who would like to share a room with someone of the same gender. If no match exists, due to hotel pricing, we will charge 50% of the single supplement rate. This fee will be collected at the time of the final payment. If a roommate assignment is available this fee will be refunded at the conclusion of the tour.
- Cyclists of Spain
Meals on Your Bicycle Tour
Information on how meals work on ExperiencePlus! Bicycle tours
We've traveled enough and loaded enough luggage to have some useful suggestions to help you pack.
ExperiencePlus! has contracted with national fitness expert Joe Friel to create customized, day by day, training programs to ensure you are ready for your biking tour.
Spain Trip Planner
Read up on country customs, transportation information, culinary specialites, and more!
We Are ExperiencePlus! Meet your Tour Leaders
We'd like to introduce you to your tour leaders. We believe we have the best bicycle tour leaders out there, click through to see a slideshow about them.
A Camino de Santiago Resource Page
These pages are intended to help you plan your Camino de Santiago tour and hopefully keep you in contact with other pilgrims after you have gone back to your daily life.
Bike the Camino de Santiago
Ted Kornish made a video highlighting the once-in-a-lifetime tour on the Camino in Spain for us.
Cycling the Camino de Santiago
Gabriel Del Rossi gives us a glimpse of life on tour with ExperiencePlus! in this video
Gigi Ragland Rides the Camino
Gigi Ragland of Women's Adventure Magazine blogged about her experiences along the Camino de Santiago with ExperiencePlus! in 2013.
Iberia by James Michener
Looking for a travelogue set in Spain? Here's a review on one of Michener's finest books.
The end of summer means tomatoes! In Valencia, Spain, there's a tomato throwing festival..join in the fun.
Nat Geo Traveler Tours of a Lifetime 2010
The Camino de Santiago is a fantastic trip; we're excited that National Geographic Traveler thinks so too!
New Cultural Pilgrims
New York Times highlights our final stop on the Camino in this article
Restaurant Basics in Spain
Ordering, meal times, and customs at restaurants in Spain
Spain hosts the 32nd America's Cup
Before or after your trip, consider visiting Valencia, where you can view the new facilities built for the 32nd America's Cup. You may also have a chance to watch crews from all over the world racing or training. The Cup will be defended in June and July, 2007 by Switzerland. There are many preliminary races before that date.
Outstanding experience. The guides were exceptional.Jose A., Miami, FL
The most important trip I have ever taken! Whether it is Spain or any other area...you can''''t go wrong with Experience Plus! "the experience of a lifetime"....I so badly want to go again. I loved the evening meetings...the history of the area shared...the stories and entertainment were beyond GREAT...just their compassion and sincere caring of each and every person was superb! Our bikes were wonderful, they were fit to each of us that our biking would be trouble free...I always thought my bikes were great, but these were the BEST! Our accommodations were special, each night...food unbelievably good as well as the wine!Jeanne L., Ft Collins, CO
I think National Geographic really summed it up - trip of a life time.Jan M., Independence, MN
What was your favorite experience on this trip? Riding the Camino every day, the amazing food every evening, leaving rocks at the cruz de ferro arriving in Santiago, the incredibly amazing guides. Amazing, A must-do, Incredible. You spoiled me and I wouldn''t use another tour group for fear of disappointment. The arrows were the best!Cathy E., Edmond, OK
What was your favorite experience on this trip? The beautiful scenery and seeing the walking pilgrims, chatting with other pilgrims along the way. I enjoyed hearing the residents wish us well.Betsy M., Colorado Springs, CO
The Camino really is a trip of a lifetime. History, scenery, food ... everything about the trip makes it memorable. The chalk arrows are absolutely brilliant. They take all the worry out of riding and let me go completely at my own pace. On the Camino, they were the Way! I can''t imagine a better experience.Pam K., Stanford, CA
We absolutely loved every minute of the tour. Thank you to our guides for making sure that Mike had all of the gluten-free food that he needed. They made it a stress free vacation.Carolyn O., Littleton, CO
I loved the people, the trip, the place, the guides. Fantastic experience!Garrett E., Donnybrook, Ireland
[My favorite part?] Riding through endless rolling hills day after day in beautiful weather. Encountering at least two quaint and unique villages each day. I can think of nothing I disliked about the trip!Sara G.
I loved being so well taken care of by the leaders. The arrows on the street were great. There was no fear of being lost so we could enjoy the country side and really appreciate what was in front of us.Eunice C.
Roosevelt Island, NY