Way of St James 2021

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Way of St James 2021

An inner and outer journey of self discovery

France - Spain: Inner and outer journey...

A walking tour with a difference; this trip follows the Camino (Way of St James) from France into Spain. Each day there is the opportunity to walk as much or as little as you like. Carrying on the many traditions of the Camino, this trip incorporates the flavour of this 1,000 year old pilgrimage.

Tour at a Glance

Confirmed Price:

$12,850 per person, share twin
$2,550 single supplement

Tour Dates:

20 May – 12 June, 2021

Tour Leader:

Stu McGregor

Escorted from New Zealand

Deposit:

$750 per person

INCLUSIONS

– All airfares & taxes (Flying Singapore Airlines)
– 1 night stopover in Singapore on the way to Europe
– Accommodation in 3-star, 4-star & 5-star hotels
– Hotel day room in Singapore on the way home
– 20 breakfasts, 2 lunches & 6 dinners
– Group tipping
– Services of English-speaking Tour Director
– Assistance of your Tour Leader, Stu McGregor

VARIATIONS

– Land Only price on application
– Extending your stay – before or after Tour Dates

EXTRA INFORMATION

– Group Size: 17 travellers (max)

Map

Tour Itinerary

May 2021

Thu 20GOODBYE, NEW ZEALAND

We sink into our seats on our Singapore Airlines jet. With New Zealand behind us – we’re on our way to Europe! But first, an overnight stop in Singapore.

Fri 21SINGAPORE DAY (B)

A free day to sightsee or shop in this lively city, before we transfer to the airport this evening. (We have a late hotel checkout time: 6.00pm).

Sat 22PARIS ARRIVAL

On arrival in Paris this morning we’ll clear customs and immigration and be taken to our hotel. (We have an early check in booked so we can go to our rooms straight away). There will be opportunity to explore the local area, take in some daylight and try and adjust those body clocks to European time. Walkers: Urban Walking Paris (Grade 1)

Sun 23A STEP BACK IN TIME (B)

The day is free to do what you wish with… but if you would like to come along with Stu he’ll take you for a walk in the oldest parts of Paris where we will uncover some glimpses of medieval Paris and connections to St Jacques (St James). Walkers: Urban Walking Paris (Grade 1)

Mon 24TIME TO EXPLORE (B)

Another day to adjust and take in those glorious sights of Paris. If you would like to come along with Stu he thought today we could visit Montmartre in the morning and the Louvre in the afternoon. Walkers: Urban Walking Paris (Grade 2)

Tue 25PARIS – LYON – LE PUY (B, D)

Today we start on our journey south. After breakfast we make our way to the Train Station to catch the TGV to Lyon. This very fast train will whizz us by beautiful countryside and take us into the heart of Southern France. At Lyon we will be met by our local guide and coach and travel on to Le Puy-En-Velay. It is here we will find the path decorated frequently with scallop shells and get that sense we are following a way significant to thousands before us. This evening we have dinner at our hotel.

Wed 26CHARMING LE PUY (B)

Le Puy is considered one of the traditional starts for the walk to Santiago de Compostela. It has a mix of architecture and we’ll get to know it a little better with a guided tour of the centre. Lunch is at your own discretion and the afternoon is free. If you like you can come with Stu and we can find some interesting things to do in and around Le Puy. There is the fascinating Saint Michel d’Aiguilhe Chapel, high on its hill which also provides a grand view across the town. Walkers: Le Puy (Grade 2)

Thu 27LE PUY – CAHORS (B, D)

Its an exciting day today because we get underway on our journey across the countryside as we follow the French part of the Way of St James. In our travels we will be moving towards Cahors with stops to walk in the charming villages of St Come, Estaing and Conques. When we arrive at Cahors we will check into our hotel and later have dinner together at the hotel restaurant. Walkers: St Come to Espalion (Grade 2.5)

Fri 28CAHORS – MOISSAC (B, D)

Today we move on to Moissac. This town is a canal crossroads between the Atlantic Ocean and the Mediterranean Sea. It was a golden town in the Middle Ages and has suffered with modernisation but we will unearth together some glimpses of why this town was such an important step on the Way of St James. When we reach Moissac we will check into our hotel. Later on we will enjoy dinner together. Walkers: A mix of walks Grade 1 & 2.

Sat 29MOISSAC – AUVILLAR – MOISSAC (B)

Now for something a little different. We will begin the day with a walk around Moissac and then travel to Auvillar, one of France’s most beautiful villages. So this is the day to have that camera battery charged and space on a memory card. We will return to Moissac to have the rest of the day free to explore and enjoy. Walkers: A mix of walks Grade 1 & 2.

Sun 30MOISSAC – LOURDES – ST JEAN PIED DE PORT (B)

Gathering ourselves up we will move on towards St Jean Pied de Port, our last stop in France before we enter Spain. We will stop along the way to take in Lourdes – a very special place with unique properties. We will then travel to St Jean Pied de Port where we will follow in the footsteps of Richard the Lionheart. This town is another significant place on the Way of St James as pilgrims stopped to take a breath before taking on the Roncevaux pass across the Pyrenees, an arduous mountain crossing. Walkers: Grade 2

Mon 31ST JEAN PIED DE PORT – LOGRONO (B, D)

So it’s over the hill to Spain we go … We will cross the Pyrenees by coach and during the day visit Roncesvalles and Pamplona before we reach Logrono.Whilst in Pamplona we will have a guided visit. In Logrono we have dinner at our hotel. Walkers: Grade 1 & 1.5

June 2021

Tue 1LOGRONO – BURGOS (B, L, D)

Today as we will travel from Logrono to Burgos taking in Santo Domingo de la Calzada and San Juan de Ortega. In the morning we will start with a visit in the old section of Logrono, capital city of La Rioja and follow in the footsteps of those who made the pilgrimage along the Old Route. Later we will discover Santo Domingo de la Calzada together. This place was created for those making the pilgrimage so it includes a hospital, a Cathedral and a beautiful Main Square. Today we’ll have a picnic lunch from the freshest local produce available. We enjoy dinner together in Burgos this evening. Walkers: Grade 1 to 2

Wed 2BURGOS (B)

Leaving Burgos we will be following the Path of St James in the Castilian plains. As one of the capitals of Medieval Spain, Leon offers Romanesque style works of art in painting, sculpture and architecture. For those of you who enjoy stained glass windows the Gothic cathedral has one of the most important collections in Europe. Walkers: Grade 1

Thu 3BURGOS – LEON (B)

Leaving Burgos we will be following the Path of St James in the Castilian plains. As one of the capitals of Medieval Spain, Leon offers Romanesque style works of art in painting, sculpture and architecture. For those of you who enjoy stained glass windows the Gothic cathedral has one of the most important collections in Europe. Walkers: Grade 1

Fri 4LEON – PONFERRADA (B, L)

Moving on today we will travel towards Ponferrada, taking in Astorga. At Astorga, another city of Roman origin, we will find a perfect Roman and Medieval city wall. We have a traditional “Maragato” lunch near Astorga. In the afternoon we will traverse one of the most authentic and untouched sections of the Path of Saint James – Rabanal del Camino, Cruz de Ferro and Molinaseca – ending at Ponferrada, known for its famous castle of the Knights Templar. Walkers: Grade 1 to 3

Sat 5PONFERRADA – S. DE COMPOSTELA (B)

The end of our pilgrimage is in sight, as today we travel the last section from Ponferrada to Santiago de Compostela via O Cebreiro and Portomarin. Walkers: Grade 1 to 1.5

Sun 6SANTIAGO DE COMPOSTELA (B)

A whole day to explore this famous destination. There is the possibility of attending the Pilgrims’ Holy Mass.

Mon 7SANTIAGO DE COMPOSTELA (B)

Today we travel out to Finisterre, the end of the world. This rocky outcrop marks the traditional end of the Way of St James.

Tue 8SANTIAGO DE COMPOSTELA – BARCELONA (B)

Free time in Santiago before our transfer to the airport for our flight to Barcelona. We will be met at Barcelona airport and taken to our hotel.

Wed 9BARCELONA (B, D)

Barcelona has many delights with surprises, and some of them quite gaudy, but you will see. We will have a guided tour including Sagrada Familia (interior) and the Gothic Quarter. The afternoon will be at leisure or if you want you can join Stu on a hunt for the oddest building in Barcelona. After all that excitement we will gather together for a dinner with Flamenco Show.

Thu 10BARCELONA – SINGAPORE (B)

This morning we transfer to Barcelona Airport for our flight to Singapore.

Fri 11SINGAPORE – HOMEWARD …

Hotel day-rooms await us in Singapore after our morning arrival and before our departure for New Zealand this evening.

Sat 12… HOME

We arrive home with wonderful memories of cleaning shoes, laughing with friends and experiencing a unique inner and outer journey.

Your Tour Guide

Stu McGregor

Stu is an ardent fan of art, religious history, design and architecture. He is interested in people and loves listening to their stories. Over the years he has worked as an engineer, graphic designer and IT consultant.

Don’t be surprised if he sees the funny side of almost anything as life is an adventure to be enjoyed as we can!

Stu was excellent.

Adequately met expectations.

Appreciated his organising tickets for non-scheduled events.

Right degree of group control and latitude.