In this article we reveal the 10 most charming tows on the Pilgrim’s way to Santiago

 The Way of St. James, a thousand-year-old route that is traveled every year by more and more pilgrims from all over the world. There are several options to do it either on horseback, by bicycle on foot and even by car, same way but different experiences. We all know that the Pilgrim’s Way to Santiago is not a single route, there is no single itinerary, but it does more than 50 roads recognized only in the peninsula. For this reason, as we pass through the different routes, we will come across villages with a lot of charm, so many that it is difficult to choose the most beautiful because each one keeps that special halo.

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The Way of the stars with a goal, Santiago de Compostela. But since we all know on the Path what is important is not to reach the goal, what is really important is the goal itself. During the crossing the pilgrims will cross magical places, each one will have its special place for whatever reason. In the following article we wanted to compile information and expose the Top 10 of the most charming towns on the Camino de Santiago, thanks to the experience we have organizing the various routes as well as the opinion of our customers. From the French Way through the Primitive Way or the Portuguese Way, we will find villages that have earned a deserved place in this list, and if you decide to do the Camino de Santiago or just visit them, you will discover why.

TOP 10 CHARMING TOWNS IN THE CAMINO DE SANTIAGO

O Cebreiro (Lugo)

This is one of 10 most charming towns of the Camino de Santiago. Located in the province of Lugo, it is undoubtedly one of the greatest attractions of the French Way. There are several reasons that make this small parish so emblematic. First of all, we must emphasize its characteristic architecture with the pallozas as the main attraction, although we must also mention the Church of Santa María from the 9th century, which houses a Romanesque chalice from the 12th century. On the other hand it is the entry point to Galicia for the pilgrims who are travelling the French Way and not less important is its location, surrounded by the National Reserve of the Ancares and the Caurel mountain range.
O Cebreiro

Santo Domingo de la Calzada (La Rioja)

In La Rioja, on the banks of the river Oja, you can find this beautiful municipality. We find it on the Camino de Santiago by the French route, although it was already here long before the village emerged. Its founder was Domingo García, who ordered the construction of a bridge to cross the river, a hospital and a pilgrim’s hostel for those seeking rest in this town. As a curiosity and as a fact for which it is known, the legend of the miracle of the hen and the rooster was born here. It is said that Domingo Garcia proved the innocence of a pilgrim who was accused of flying a roasted hen on his plate. Behind this legend, it is said that in Santo Domingo de la Calzada, “where the hen crowed after being roasted”, and in the Cathedral there is always a live rooster and hen.
Santo Domingo de la Calzada

Jaca (Huesca)

This town is located in the Aragonese variant, a less known section among the pilgrims but no less beautiful. Jaca is located 72 kilometers from Huesca, specifically in the valley of Aragon and surrounded by an idyllic landscape formed by the National Park of Ordesa and Monte Perdido. It is a medieval town with great historical and architectural heritage. Also has one of the most valuable monuments in the region: the Citadel of Jaca, a beautiful fortification that served as protection from invasions in the time of Philip II and declared a National Monument.

Jaca Huesca

Nájera (La Rioja)

Next to the aforementioned town of Santo Domingo de la Calzada, Nájera is the other great Jacobean enclave in La Rioja. This small town is bordered by hills that have been inhabited since prehistoric times and by the Najerilla River. Among its history, the battles between Moors and Christians since the 10th century stand out, and as part of its heritage we cannot miss the monastery of Santa María La Real or the Castle of La Mota.
Nájera

Astorga (León)

Born as a Roman military camp at the end of the first century B.C. this municipality is located in the central area of León. Since the 11th century the Camino de Santiago along the French route and the church have been key in the development of the city. It has a beautiful cathedral that combines Gothic, Renaissance and Baroque elements as well as a spectacular Episcopal Palace designed by Antoni Gaudí that was rebuilt in 1889 after a fire. As an additional attraction is the museum of chocolate, a good excuse to stop and enjoy this sweet delicacy.
Astorga

Portomarín (Lugo)

One of the jewels that we will find in the French Way and that we after our experience organizing the Way of Santiago from Sarria recommend. This town was born and developed next to a Roman bridge over the River Miño and through which passes the Camino de Santiago, and is located in the Galician province of Lugo. If we pass through this place will be obligatory the visit to the Church of St. John and St. Nicholas, which was moved stone by stone from its former location, we also recommend visiting a curious stone staircase that will take us to the Chapel of the Snows.
Portomarin

Puente La Reina (Navarra)

This municipality belongs to the community of Navarre and is about 24 kilometres from Pamplona. This village is an important point on the Camino de Santiago because the two roads that come from France, the route from Orreaga/ Roncesvalles and that of Somport, come together in it. Its most outstanding civil monument is the Roman Bridge built on the River Arga and through which runs the Way of St. James, also has several churches including Santiago that are worth visiting if we have the opportunity.
Puente La Reina

Villafranca del Bierzo (León)

Villafranca is one of the 10 most charming towns of the Camino de Santiago. With approximately 3,200 inhabitants this small municipality belonging to the community of Leon has an architectural heritage that includes at least 13 monuments including the Church of Santiago Apostle, the Church of San Juan, the Castle of Villafranca and the Convent of the Vincentian Fathers. We are in the French Way, and this wonderful enclave offers us one of the urban nuclei declared Good of Cultural Interest thanks to its monumental offer as well as its wine tradition.  It has thus become one of the most important and touristic points of the Jacobean route.
Villafranca

Melide (La Coruña)

This municipality of La Coruña is 54 kilometres from Santiago de Compostela. Many pilgrims choose Melide as their last point of departure before reaching Obradoiro. It stands out for the contrast of its fields, with the animals always present, and its medieval constructions. It has 11 crosses, although we stay with the one of Melide, of the XV century and of Gothic style it is the oldest of Galicia. From our experience we can say that it is one of the favorite places on the French Way from Sarria among other things for its monumental and gastronomic offer, and for being one of the largest nuclei that we will find in this itinerary.
Pulperias Melide

Sahagún (León)

We arrive at the number one of the most charming villages on the Camino de Santiago. It’s situated in the southeast of Leon, and its historical heritage and heritage. As well as its celebrations in which highlights the Holy Week make it a very touristic place nationally, even internationally. It has a great monumental heritage dating back to the Middle Ages. Such as the churches of San Lorenzo and San Tirso, the Sanctuary of La Peregrina or the ruins of the Royal Monastery of San Benito. Not only has it stood out and developed in the Middle Ages, also in the twentieth century stands out. This is due to the fact that it won the title of ‘Very Exemplary City‘ on the occasion of being the first civil locality to proclaim the Republic in the early hours of April 14, 1931.

Sahagun

In this article we have compiled what we and our customers have considered the most charming villages. Of course, there are many more, to say the least. For this reason we invite you to do the Camino de Santiago, we take care of everything, we organize it for you. You will be able to discover first hand some of these towns as well as others that will leave you captivated.

How many of these 10 most charming towns of the Camino de Santiago has visited? What other towns are missing from the list? Don’t forget to leave a comment with your personal recommendations.
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