On the Camino del Norte, Pepiena to Lezama, Spain

November 14, 2015 — Leave a comment

After I left Albergue Eskerika in the village of Pepiena, I was greeted by a cute donkey in a field. Well, maybe it wasn’t a greeting, but she looked at me in an inquisitive way. If I only had an apple. I really enjoyed meeting many of the farm animals along the Camino and they helped brighten my days when I wasn’t feeling well!

I left my last post, On the Camino del Norte, Guernica to Pepiena, Spain, at Albergue Eskerika, about 8 kilometers and a steep climb west of Guernica. I had a pleasant sleep but it was very odd having an entire dorm with about 25 beds to myself. I hope more pilgrims utilize the albergue and keep the owner in business (it was open at the time of writing but always check prior to arriving).

Now, let’s visit the donkey. Good morning!

Pepiena donkey basque camino del norte



and good-bye!

Pepiena donkey Euzkadi camino del norte



After Pepiena, the Camino followed this gravel road through a rural mix of forest and farmland. Be prepared to climb!

Pepiena Astoreka camino del norte



We’ll go left here towards Goikoelexalde. Off the road and soon…

Pepiena Astoreka camino del norte sign



onto this wet, muddy path. There was a short climb of about 100 meters to the height of land or alto.

Pepiena Astoreka camino del norte path



Goikoelexalde path camino del norte



A view of the hillside from near the alto.

Goikoelexalde hillside camino del norte



Goikoelexalde sign camino del norte



I’m not too sure what this building was. It didn’t look like a home.

Goikoelexalde home camino del norte



Back onto pavement to Goikoelexalde. Even the rural areas often had garbage cans along the road (please use them!).

Goikoelexalde road camino del norte



Getting very close to Goikoelexalde.

Goikoelexalde sign spain camino del norte



This was the Italian pilgrim who I walked with off and on during the first half of the Camino del Norte. Sometimes, we wouldn’t see each other for a day or two and then meet by coincidence along the Camino or in an albergue. It was amazing how close we were in pace.

Goikoelexalde Euzkadi espana camino del norte



A beautiful home in Goikoelexalde.

Goikoelexalde Euzkadi espana camino home flowers



The church, Iglesia de San Emeterio y San Celedonio, dates to about 1500 with later renovations and extensions.

Goikoelexalde iglesia de San Emeterio San Celedonio



I’m sure the upper level of the tower was quite recent.

Goikoelexalde camino iglesia de San Emeterio San Celedonio



The ancient Crucero de Goikoelexalde.

Goikoelexalde Euzkadi espana camino crucerio



About 1.4 kilometers from Goikoelexalde is the small town of Larrabetzu.

Goikoelexalde Lezama Euzkadi camino highway



Entering Larrabetzu with very quite streets in the late morning.

Goikoelexalde Euzkadi camino del norte spain



Ahead is the Church of Santa Maria.

Goikoelexalde Lezama espana camino del norte



From Larrabetzu, there is a short climb and descent along a good track into Lezama. Be careful walking along this road. As you can see, there is no path or shoulder.

Goikoelexalde Lezama road espana camino del norte



At the time of writing, there was an albergue in Lezama. As for me, I had my sights on Bilbao, over 11 kilometers away.

Lezama spain espana camino del norte

I hope you enjoyed this post. As the day got hotter, I struggled with the climb up Monte Avril, before desending into Bilbao, where I arrived completely exhausted. That will be on my next post, On the Camino del Norte, Lezama to Bilbao, Spain. Please join me.


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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