On The Camino De Santiago in Spain, Cacabelos to Villafranca Del Bierzo

December 28, 2012 — 4 Comments

From the forest, I emerged into a vast vineyard, one of many in the area. A sign in Spanish had been erected by the winery, and I understood that Cabernet Franc was grown here. After a short climb, I came across one of my favorite sites along the entire Camino. A white split-level house stood above the hillside at the end of a magnificent vineyard. Three giant trees, which resembled cypress, towered over the house and provided shade. That was one place I could have stayed a while – somewhere I could be creative… From Page 157, Camino de Santiago In 20 Days. Yes, that home and vineyard were among my favorite views along the Camino Francés. We’ll get there soon.

Now, I’ll continue with my journey on the Camino de Santiago, starting in Cacabelos, Castilla y León. Even if you don’t have my book, you can still enjoy this post, and learn more about walking the French Way or Camino Francés (map from Wikipedia Commons). On my last post, On The Camino De Santiago in Cacabelos Spain, I focused only on the town of Cacabelos, and now it’s time to continue through the Bierzo Valley.

From Cacabelos, the Camino followed the shoulder of the highway. Please be careful not to get hit by cars along this stretch. Here is another vast vineyard, at least a kilometer long.

 Vines, Vineyard, vast, Cacabelos, Camino Frances


The village of Pieros was extremely quiet, and if you need a break, this was a pleasant spot.

Pieros, village, Park, trees, blue sky, lamp post, Camino Frances


This option is just after Pieros. I took the route on the right toward the village of Valtuille de Arriba.

 sign, Pieros , Camino Frances, yellow arrow


Just north of Pieros was the Church of San Martin de Tours, established in the 11th century.

Church of San Martin de Tours,  Pieros, Camino Frances, stone, grass, trees, green


The Camino followed the highway for a short period and then veered off into a beautiful vineyard. Here, I’m looking back toward Pieros and Cacabelos with the church on the left.

 vineyard, clouds, Church of San Martin de Tours,  Pieros, village, Camino Frances


This vineyard was memorable, not only for the vastness, but the brownish-red soil that looked so rich.

Vast Vineyard, West of Pieros, road, power lines,  Camino Frances


Vineyard, Pieros, Camino Frances red soil, trees, clouds


In front of a home in Valtuille de Arriba, this Camino tile shows the way. If you’re interested, these tiles are available for purchase in Santiago de Compostela.

Waymark, Valtuille de Arriba, Camino Frances, post, tile


The quiet streets of Valtuille de Arriba in the late afternoon.

Downtown Valtuille de Arriba, Camino Frances, deserted, narrow street


I found it interesting to see this aqueduct running through the center of the village.

Aqueduct, Valtuille de Arriba, man, water, Camino Frances


The peaceful walk along this road led out of Valtuille de Arriba to…

Valtuille de Arriba, Camino Frances, path, trees, farmland


another beautiful vineyard. I certainly didn’t want to get caught in the storm brewing in the south.

Vineyard, Valtuille de Arriba,  Camino Frances, red soil, dark clouds, storm, mountains


Here is the aforementioned home. This is truly one of my favorite views along the entire French Way. I could imagine myself spending a few weeks here. It looks like such a relaxing spot.

House, Hill, Villafranca del Bierzo vineyard, white, road, Camino Frances


 House, Hill, Villafranca del Bierzo vineyard, white, Camino Frances


Another look at the storm in the south which was intensifying.

Storm, Villafranca del Bierzo, dark clouds, vineyard, Camino Frances


A nearby sign stated that the traditional grapes in this area were Mencia and Godello, but the winery also planted new varietals, including Cabernet Sauvignon, Gewurztraminer, and Tempranillo.

Vineyard, Villafranca del Bierzo, Camino Frances, clouds, trees, vines, mountain


 Near Villafranca Del Bierzo, this mural welcomed you into the town.


Mural, shed, road, clouds,  Villafranca del Bierzo, Camino Frances

I hope you enjoyed this post. Every time I see that house on the hill, it brings back fond memories from my time on the French Way. On my next post, On The Camino De Santiago in Villafranca Del Bierzo Spain, I’ll focus only on the ancient town of Villafranca Del Bierzo, before climbing the mountains toward a land I had heard so much about. Galicia. 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. My Goodreads page has 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.


4 responses to On The Camino De Santiago in Spain, Cacabelos to Villafranca Del Bierzo

  1. Dear Randall: What an amazing journey you took! It sounds delightful and enormously challenging. Wow! I’m truly inspired by it. It’s lovely of you to follow me on Twitter @Fey1IsleofSkye, I’ll happily be returning the favor.

  2. Randall.

    Thanks for showing me these pictures. I took a different route, so these were new to me. It reminds me that there is no one way to Santiago and the each person has his/her own Camino.

    • Thanks Jane. You’re right, it all up to you how you walk your Camino. I mentioned to someone else earlier that I’m sure the Bierzo Valley alone has all kinds of surprises. I’d like to explore off the Camino one day.

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