Getting to Santiago de Compostela is an emotional rush after a long pilgrimage, although it can also leave behind a sense of sadness in us. We reach our goal, but that means the Camino is over. That’s why it is highly recommended not to see arriving in Santiago as an end in itself. Staying for a few days in the city of Compostela is a very common option amongst pilgrims and we want to give you all the means to do so.
If you want everything to run off smoothly, our office in Rúa do Franco, 4 (2 minutes from Obradoiro) is an important landmark for the pilgrim, where:
You will have a locker to leave your backpack, bicycle or walking sticks so that you can enter the Cathedral of Santiago and visit the city without getting weighed down; you can send backpacks, luggage, walking sticks or your bicycle back home; you can seal the pilgrim’s credentials and pick up a suitcase or package with extra luggage that you have sent us before starting the Camino to enjoy a few days visiting Santiago de Compostela.
And after finishing your Camino, what to do in Santiago de Compostela?
10 things to do when you get to Santiago
1. First of all, we would urge you to go the POST OFFICE to leave your backpack, bike or walking sticks in our depot or to send them directly back home. You’re not allowed to enter the Cathedral with a backpack, so this is an important step for the perfect plan. From Easter to October 31st we are open every day: Monday to Saturday from 8.30am to 8.30pm and on Sundays from 8.30am to 7pm. From October 31st we open from Monday to Friday from 8.30am to 8.30pm and on Saturdays from 9.30am to 1pm.
2. Now you are ready to visit the Cathedral! You can do it by going through the Plaza of Platerías, unless it is a Holy Year when you have to go through the Puerta Santa. Embrace the Apostle and go down to see the tomb. Enjoy the Pórtico de la Gloria and look for the figure of “Santo dos Croques”. At 12:00 and 19:30 the Pilgrim's Mass is celebrated. Every Friday afternoon you can see the famous “Botafumeiro”. Finally, leave some time to climb to the rooftops of the Cathedral, the views are beautiful.
3. Go around the Cathedral and discover the Plaza del Obradoiro with the Hostal de los Reyes Católicos and the Pazo de Raxoi, the horses’ fountain in Platerías, the Seminario by the Azabachería, or La Quintana if you want to sit down and have a rest whilst the Torre da la Berenguela announces the time.
4. Don’t miss the Mercado de Abastos (food market) with the best that Galician gastronomy has to offer: fish, seafood, vegetables, octopus... you can taste them all right here.
5. Walk along the Alameda. You can take a picture with the “Dos Marias” and enjoy the beautiful sights from the “Eucalipto del Amor”.
6. Have a glass of wine... or two, accompanied by the best tapas. You will find bars and restaurants everywhere in the city to toast your arrival in Santiago. There are plenty of bars and restaurants located in the Rúa do Franco, Rúa da Raíña and the surrounding areas.
7. Visit the university headquarters with its garden cloister and if you are passionate about libraries do not miss the one at the Faculty of History.
8. Get lost in the old quarter and discover the bustle of its streets: Rúa Nova with its theatres, the arcades of Rúa do Vilar, the Preguntoiro...
9. Discover San Martin Pinario, the steps, the gargoyles and the plateresque façade. Here you’ll find bars with beautiful terraces and gardens to enjoy the sunny days.
10. Take a walk around Porta do Camiño: enjoy the Bonaval park, visit the Museo do Pobo Galego or the Contemporary Art Museum (CGAC), and if you have the time, go up to the Ciudad de la Cultura in Monte Gaiás.
Whether you end your Camino in Santiago de Compostela, or decide to explore a part of it and finish in another city, our Pilgrim Pack will help you stay for a few days in the area to take a break, with all your clothes and necessary belongings readily available.
Send luggage at the end of the Camino to enjoy a few days in the city
After the thrill of arrival, you will want to decide how to spend your time. After walking for a few days or even weeks, there are certain things in our daily lives that we start to appreciate much more than we can imagine. One of them is having clean clothes or certain garments that are not suitable for the long stretches of hiking that we have to face in the Camino but which are ideal for going out for a stroll.
Having extra baggage becomes crucial when you decide to stay somewhere for a few days, especially since the pilgrim’s backpack usually has nothing more than the bare essentials. With our Pilgrim Pack you can have that extra baggage simply by sending your bags from any Post Office to the end point of your Camino.
If you arrive in Spain by plane through Madrid, you can send it directly from the post office that we have at Barajas airport. You can find it at Terminal 1 in the arrivals hall. It is open from 08:30am to 02:30pm from Monday to Friday and Saturdays from 09:30am to 01:00pm. We also have a post office at the Chamartín train station in Madrid, open at the same time. In many cities, you will also find post offices open in the evenings, some even until 10pm.
Our office in Santiago de Compostela is full of pilgrim’s luggage.
Send parcels with clothing or belongings that you have left over during the Camino
During the Camino de Santiago every gram of strength and every gram we carry in our backpack counts. If you send your luggage from stage to stage with our Backpack Pack, you will not have to worry about it, but if you prefer to carry your belongings on your pilgrimage you may at some point realise that you have taken more than you need in your backpack and you will be reminded of them every day each time you put on your backpack.
If excessive weight becomes a priority, you can send a package back to where you started from any Post Office, or also to any Post Office of the Camino and pick it up on arrival.
Avoid paying on the plane when you go back home
When you finish the Camino, you can send your backpack or suitcase back home through the Post Office. This will allow you to travel without being weighed down and it can save you the costs of airline billing.
Hope you all have a good Camino!!
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¡Buen Camino! This is our wish at Correos! – that pilgrims can fully enjoy their Camino and discover new places, histories, people and experiences through our postcards.