On the Camino del Norte, Bilbao to Cruces, Spain

September 22, 2016 — Leave a comment

I often get asked what sections that a pilgrim may want to bypass during their walk on the Camino del Norte. Although I don’t advise missing any of the Camino, the stretch west of Bilbao has kilometers of urban sprawl and pavement through the suburb of Cruces. You can also skip one morning climb if you stayed at the municipal albergue and two if you stayed downtown.

I left my last post, On the Camino del Norte in Bilbao, Spain, in well…. Bilbao, Spain. I arrived exhausted to the municipal albergue and was lucky to get one of the last beds. After a good dinner with fellow pilgrims, and some much-needed rest, I was off early with our small group.

The Camino was very quiet here as many pilgrims took the bus to Cruces, Portugalete, or even further. I walked the Camino and this first section was actually quite enjoyable….

Euskadi Bilbao camino del norte spain



except for this view over the Profusa factory.

Profusa factory Bilbao camino del norte spain



What is that ahead?

path Bilbao camino del norte spain



Donkeys are always a welcomed sight along the Camino. This one looked a little hungry…

burro Bilbao camino del norte spain



donkey Bilbao camino del norte spain



She had a few friends on the hill.

Bilbao camino del norte burro spain



Overlooking the small suburb of Delicias-Urgozo. We continue to descend to the valley bottom.

Delicias-Urgozo Bilbao camino del norte spain




Delicias-Urgozo spain camino del norte



Crossing the Río Kadagua on Puente del Diablo or Bridge of the Devil.

puente del Diablo Delicias-Urgozo Bilbao



I was surprised to see one of my favourite flowers, the sweet scented heliotrope, growing from between the stone.

puente del Diablo Delicias-Urgozo helitrope



The peaceful Río Kadagua or Cadagua from Puente del Diablo. The headwaters of the Kadagua are in La Peña mountains, located in the Province of Burgos.

puente Diablo Delicias-Urgozo río Kadagua



Very quiets streets.

Delicias-Urgozo Euskadi camino del norte spain



I always was excited to walk along medieval roads. This one as we climb to Santa Águeda.

medieval road camino del norte Santa Águeda



We’ll go right here…

sign Santa Águeda camino del norte spain



Herding sheep through the hamlet of Santa Águeda.

oveja Santa Águeda Euskadi camino

ermita de Santa Águeda sheep camino del norte



The origin of Ermita de Santa Águeda dates to 1584 but there was likely a church here much earlier. Renovations were completed in the 20th century.

ermita de Santa Águeda Euskadi camino spain



Overlooking Cruces, also known as Barakaldo, an important modern residential, commercial, and industrial suburb of Bilbao. Let’s descend…

Cruces Barakaldo Euskadi camino del norte



Much of Cruces along the Camino was through urban sprawl. I’ll include a few photos to give you an idea.

Euskadi Cruces Barakaldo camino

Cruces Barakaldo Euskadi camino del norte spain

Cruces Barakaldo Euskadi leroy merlin

highway Cruces Barakaldo Euskadi camino



We’ll go left here toward Portugalete and Pobeña.

Euskadi Cruces Barakaldo camino del norte
I hope you enjoyed this post. As the day got warmer, I felt my energy being zapped again as walking along the paved pathway with little shade took its toll. If you’re walking this stretch in the heat, please make sure you carry enough water. If you skip this section, I wouldn’t argue with your decision. Don’t miss scenic Pobeña though. Please join me on my next post as I got sidetracked in Portugalete and arrived in Pobeña with no more beds available at the albergue. It wasn’t fun sleeping in a tent outside of the Pobeña albergue and that was where I contemplated quitting the Camino. I’m glad I didn’t 🙂

If you have my book, Camino de Santiago In 20 Days, or have ordered it, I really appreciate your support. It’s also out on Kindle and Kobo. My Goodreads and Amazon pages have reviews and more information. Please share this post, and thanks for your time.

About Randall St. Germain

Randall St. Germain, author of Camino de Santiago In 20 Days, is a middle-aged Canadian Boy who is passionate about nature, photography, hiking, music, and self-improvement. After the death of his mother, he chose to walk the famous pilgrimage, the Camino de Santiago, across the north of Spain, despite knowing little about it. He certainly didn’t plan to write a book until the latter days of his Camino. Similar to walking the Camino, writing and publishing a book was a learning experience. It was also very rewarding, and part of his ongoing journey. Please join him as he takes you along on his journey in Camino de Santiago In 20 Days, and on his blog Camino My Way.


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