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In photos

Updated: Apr 25

This will most likely be my last Via de la Plata blog post. New adventures call, and later this year I’ll walk the 750 klm Via Podiensis/GR65/Le Puy from Le Puy-en-Velay to Saint-Jean-Pied-de-Port in France with some other of folk. That could well be my last very long-distance walk, but of course, who knows? Time, as I say below, has a funny way of playing with both memories and plans.


I’m hoping that many of you who followed the live blog in September-November last year will read this, or perhaps a better way of saying that is that I hope that anyone who is reading this had previously followed the live blog.


We came home with a sort of “wow that wasn’t fun” immediate recollection, and many people made comments about how tough the walk had been, and by implication, how much we hadn’t enjoyed it. Yes, there’s no doubt that there were some hard days, but in truth (or maybe in faulty memory), they were relatively few.


I took some 3,400 photos along the way; that’s an average of some 60/day. The biggest number was 126 at the very pretty town of Puebla de Sanabria and the trip that day to the Centro del Lobo Iberico, and the smallest number was just 3, in the little town of Torremejía, when I was not well.  Somewhere along the way (most likely once I returned home) I dreamed up the idea of selecting just one photo to either represent or highlight each day. An almost impossible task. As I scrolled though my 3,400 photos, including countless selfies, the memories returned about just how extraordinary this walk was. Perhaps not as pretty as some areas, and certainly more isolated in more ways than one. But quite an astounding walk and experience all the same. One which I'm very glad I did.


I have identified 59 photos which start at Day minus-1, the 14th September and my 71st birthday at the simply fabulous Cañabota restaurant in Sevilla, and go through to Day 56, our last day in España, back in Madrid, before heading home. You can see them all here - I had some flexible self-imposed rules. Rule one is that no two photos were to be fundamentally the same; a bit tricky to exclude the multiple ancient bridges, or the various ruined castles, or the catedrals/churches, or the numerous shots of the scenery with the absolutely stunning blue Spanish sky, but mostly I was able to comply with myself. Rule two was that there could only be one photo for each day, regardless of how many other ones I took on that day which were otherwise representative of the day. I only broke that rule once, on Day 53, for what I think is an excusable reason (and after all, it’s my own rule anyway).


Blog followers will recall than on Day 41, Thursday 26th October 2023), after torrential rain and howling winds the previous day we made the difficult decision to bail on the walk and return to Puebla de Sanabria for the day, and thence onto Madrid for three days of warmth and dryness, before picking up where we would have been, arriving at Ourense just in time for the Samaín festival. So there are three photos which deviate from the walk, but which after all were part of the whole experience.


I’ve listed them all below, which may not mean all that much - as I said above you can see them here. If you've walked the Via I hope that they bring back some wonderful memories. If you haven't, maybe they'll encourage you to go.


Day -1 - Birthday 71, Cañabota

Day 0 - the day before

Day 1 - Sevilla

Day 2 - not far now!

Day 3 - near Almadén de la Plata

Day 4 - El Real de la Jara

Day 5 - Castillo de las Torres

Day 6 - north of Monesterio

Day 7 - near Medina de las Torres

Day 8 - Almazara (en ruinas)

Day 9 - Torremejía

Day 10 - Torremejía (alone)

Day 11 - Mérida

Day 12 - Acueducto de los Milagros

Day 13 - Vultures (near Cruz de San Juan)

Day 14 - leaving Alcuescar

Day 15 - Old Town of Cáceres

Day 16 - Casa-Museo Árabe Yusuf Al-Burch, Cáceres

Day 17 - leaving Cáceres

Day 18 - hill climb, leaving Cañaveral

Day 20 - street art, Carcaboso

Day 21 - Ciudad Romana de Cáparra

Day 22- produce, Aldeanueava del Camino

Day 23- this way, Baños de Montemayor

Day 24 - scoops, Fuenterroble de Salvatiero

Day 25 - Miliario en la milla 153, near Palacios de Salvatierra

Day 26 - entering Salamanca

Day 27 - Plaza Mayor de Salamanca

Day 28 - Castellanos de Villiquera

Day 29 - leaving Calzada de Valdunciel

Day 30 - leaving El Cubo del Tierra del Vino

Day 31 - Castilo de Zamora

Day 32- Iglesia de San Pedro y San Ildefonso

Day 32 - and so it starts ...

Day 19 - rooftops, Galisteo

Day 35 - Puente Quintos, Moreruela de Tábara

Day 36 - Parque Santa Croya, Santa Croya de Tera

Day 37 - Me Gusta Comer, Rionegro del Punete

Day 38 - near Valdamerilla

Day 39 - near Palacios de Sanabria

Day 40 - Rio Castro, leaving Puebla de Sanabria

Day 41 - return to Puebla de Sanabria

Day 42 - Centro del Lobo Iberico

Day 43 - departure

Day 44 - Taberna el Madroño, Madrid

Day 45 - Fuente de Cibeles, Madrid

Day 46 – Samaín, Praza do Ferro, Oursense

Day 47 - Catedral de San Martiño do Ourense

Day 48 - leaving Ourense

Day 34 - Ermita de la Virgen del Castilo, Montamarta

Day 49 - Cemitério, Iglesia de Santa María de Carballeda, Piñor

Day 50 - close, near Vilarello

Day 51 - Horreos, Baxán

Day 52 - Silleda

Day 53 - only 17 ...

Day 53 - rainy arrival ...

Day 54 - Botafumeiro,​ Catedral de Santiago de Compostela

Day 55 - view from the top ...

Day 56 - Carlos III, Madrid. Adios ...


Some time on the next few weeks I’ll start the Via Podiensis blog. Feel free to keep following …

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May 16

Wow, wow, WOW! What a magnificent feat and record. Thank you for doing so much work on documenting and pictographing all of this! Just beyond belief. Many more buen camini .(?)


Apr 24

Hi Peter,

The Via Podiensis sounds like a great route, looking forward to seeing how the adventure goes.

Mur, Dublin.

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