Caminho Francês

Portomarín - Palas de Rei

24 km Difficulty
From Portomarín you cross the dam and start a moderate climb up the Monte Santo Antonio towards Gonzar, located 8 kilometres away from the starting point. There is a church here (Santa María) and a public pilgrim’s hostel. The next village is Castromaior, where there is a Romanesque church and the remains of a pre-roman settlement (castro). 

After climbing to the village of Hospital you reach the C-535 motorway and you will have to follow it for 10 kilometres, passing through the Sierra de Ligonde, where the descent starts, precisely at the site of the hospital that gives this place its name. (Notable guests have included Emperor Charles I and his son Philip II.).

From here there are 8 kilometres left to finish the day’s journey. This stretch was protected in medieval times (since 1184) by the Knights of the Order of Saint James. A Brea follows, and then the recreation area of Os Chacotes marks the arrival at Palas de Rei. Highlights here include the church of San Tirso and the 12th-century church of Vilar de Donas, a historic and artistic monument that was part of a monastery of the Order of Saint James. 

Tips from our postmen and women

“If you spend the afternoon in Palas, you can make a short excursion to Castelo de Pambre. It is some 5 kilometres away from the town proper, but it is worth seeing as one of the very few remnants of medieval military architecture in Galicia. The castle was built in the 14th century and was very relevant during the First Castilian Civil War of that century between Peter I and Henry of Trastámara. There are organised visits”. Juan Hidalgo, Correos de Palas of Reis.