The Camino Primitivo

Tracking the pass of the first pilgrim

The original Camino de Santiago

It was the year 813 of Our Lord when a hermit named Pelayo saw some mysterious lights on a mound in the middle of the forest. He informed the bishop and, under the lights and inside an old chapel, they discover the tomb of the Apostle James the Elder, who died in 44, and his two disciples, Theodore and Athanasius.

Aware of this discovery, the Asturian king Alfonso II El Casto, who at the time was in Oviedo, decides to go in person to the tomb. He was about to become the first pilgrim in history, founding what for many centuries would be the Camino de Santiago and that today we know as the Camino Primitivo (Primitive Way).

From Oviedo to Santiago

Although, as in any Camino, there is no official division of the route, I tell you how I divided it, where to sleep every night, and the why of the choice, if there was a why.

stages

kilometres

tracked hours

photographies

My own Way

The Camino de Santiago, like any other long-distance route, and I would even dare to say any route, is more than just walking, eating and sleeping. In the following publications, more than bored with routes and slopes, I get a little naked and I tell you what I thought and what I felt.

Stage 12: Monte do Gozo –  Santiago de Compostela

Stage 12: Monte do Gozo – Santiago de Compostela

On the morning of September 12, 1213, Peter the Catholic was preparing for the battle of Muret in an unorthodox way: spending the whole night with a prostitute. The next day, at mass, his legs were shaking.

Stage 11: Rivadiso – Monte do Gozo

Stage 11: Rivadiso – Monte do Gozo

I’ve woken up, cured and dressed without making any noise. Or rather, making as little noise as possible. And yet, or because of, when I was about to leave, the girl in the bunk over mine asked me if I was already leaving, where I was going, what day I wanted to reach Santiago.

Stage 10: Ferreira – Rivadiso

Stage 10: Ferreira – Rivadiso

The night in Ferreira has been quiet. We were all scared because the Great Snorer in Chief slept with us. Legend says that no man had ever snored as loudly and desperately as he had, and those of us who were in the municipal hostel of Lugo can corroborate this.

Stage 9: Lugo – Ferreira

Stage 9: Lugo – Ferreira

The subject of the body and pain is very curious. You start walking with a foot pain that you think that will be the last day you will walk (in life, not on the Camino), then suddenly it disappears, and when you have already arrived, it reappears so that you have to stay still and do not crush them any more.

Stage 8: Castroverde – Lugo

Stage 8: Castroverde – Lugo

It’s raining. The rain has finally arrived. After a few days listening, while drinking coffee in the bar of one of the villages where the Camino Primitivo passes, the weather-man announcing water, it has appeared.

Stage 7: O Padrón – Castroverde

Stage 7: O Padrón – Castroverde

After the equator, and already in Galicia, it seems that everything is possible and that there is only half to do. In Padrón you sleep well. It really doesn’t take much to sleep well.

Stage 6: Grandas de Salime – O Padrón

Stage 6: Grandas de Salime – O Padrón

Stage 6. Halfway. About 170 kilometres walked; about 170 kilometres to do. It is the last day of the Asturian way. From today, everything will be flatter, less mountainous. Perhaps, who knows, more boring. Or maybe not.

Stage 5: Berducedo – Grandas de Salime

Stage 5: Berducedo – Grandas de Salime

The protagonist of the night in Berducedo has not been any snorer, luckily, but an Australian of curious look. I had seen him for the first time just reaching Berducedo. He was shirtless and counter-direction.

Stage 4: Borres – Berducedo, by Hospitales

Stage 4: Borres – Berducedo, by Hospitales

If the first night was that of symphonic snoring, the third was a fucking concert by the Three Tenors, with Luciano Pavarotti in top form. What lungs, guys, what chest power, and what sonic flexibility: sometimes he looked like a tenor, sometimes like a baritone, and he has even dared with the falsetto.

Stage 3: Bodenaya – Borres

Stage 3: Bodenaya – Borres

Have you ever woken up to Schubert’s Ave Maria? I do, once alone, and I assure you that I will not forget it. It has been a peaceful, gentle, charming, mystical, epic, magical, biblical awakening. Unforgettable!! Temples exist.

Stage 2: San Juan de Villapañada – Bodenaya

Stage 2: San Juan de Villapañada – Bodenaya

I slept with Darth Vader next door. And with a few who should have done a master’s degree in snoring. They were all perfectly synchronized. But not snoring at the same time, no; the snoring was chained into a melody of second voices, and thirds, and fourths.

Stage 1: Oviedo – San Juan de Villapañada

Stage 1: Oviedo – San Juan de Villapañada

Traveling leaves you speechless, then turns you into a storyteller.Natalia has a very comfortable sofa. She lives in Oviedo, in a hushed area, and is a couchsurfer.Couchsurfing is a social network of travellers, where people offer or demand accommodation, in a wholly...

Panoramic on Camino Primitivo

The Hostels along the Camino Primitivo

One of the aspects that contribute most to creating a good atmosphere among pilgrims is undoubtedly the hostels. Generally, throughout the Camino there is a wide variety of accommodations to choose from, but the authentic Camino is only found in the hostels.

Hostels on Camino Primitivo

The pilgrims

When I made the Primitive Way, it was a relatively little known path. Therefore, there was little accommodation and few pilgrims, so that you were always coinciding with them during the day, and also during the night, creating a small family. This was mine.

Leoni

Agata

Germán

Photo gallery

Every trip, however introspective, has its visual memories.

Thank you very much for this wonderful history of the Primitive way. I did it in June 2015, and I have read the story with many memories. The photos are perfect.My congratulations on finishing the Primitivo, walking with blisters. And with many sleepless nights, because of all these snorers. It is a story of a true pilgrim and not of consented turigrims.
Jacobs Noël