My Camino Route in 2017

My Camino Route in 2017
This year (2017), I will be walking most of the Camino Levante from Albacete to Zamora I've alloted three weeks in September and October, but may have time at the end for more walking.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Madrid Sept 26

Interesting art of the Spanish Inquisition on the benches in the Plaza Mayor.

The marathon blocking the streets.

Madrid Sept 26

10:00 am: I took a short walk to the Puerta del Sol this morning then decided to walk up to the Gran Via area to find the hostal that we originally had reservations for our last two days in Spain (since we arrived 3 days early in Madrid, we had to stay in a different place those days). Tomorrow I will move, but the first location was actually better for the places I wanted to see, I now realize.

I noticed a lot of police actvity on both Sol and Gran Via. As I made my way back, I discovered I was on the wrong side of a huge marathon race in progress and could not cross the square at Sol for the hundreds of runners. Time to duck onto a cafe for a morning cafe con leche and watch the runners out of the window. And start writing today's blog. There is a group coming in one direction and continuing on to someplace else then they are headed through on the other side. Everyone but a few stragglers has passed the first direction, so in a bit the second direction should be light enough to continue on.

5:00: I continued on to the Plaza Mayor, similar to the one in Salamanca but not as large. From there on to the cathedral. This is the newest one I have seen started in the late 1800s and dedicated only in 1993. It is beside the Royal Palace, which is third in size only to Versailles and the Schönbrun. I had never seen it on previous visits, so it was time. And finally over to the Reina Sofia art museum before it closed at 2:30, again free admission today. After a walk back to the hostal, I had a menu of the day (paella mixta and fish) at the restaurant below the hostal.

A few things of note-

1. Madrid is easier to navigate as there are now many more and larger street signs and many streets are being converted to pedestrian mostly with limited vehicle access. According to Rick Steve, this is part of Madrid's bid for the Olympics, a failed bid for 2012, another bid for 2016.

2. The iPhone/itouch apps for Madrid and Salamanca are a total waste of money. The most useful one has been Rick Steve's guide on kindle fit itouch. It is the full print version on the itouch. I used his self guideed tour of the Royal Palace and of the art museums. Highly recommended and worth it.

3. Spain must be where all the cheesiest American t-shirts get sent when they can not sell them in the US. Almost every young Spanish male and many of the females have t-shirts in English, many of which no one who is "cool" in the US would be caught wearing.


  1. So Rick Steve really knows what he's talking about! I've been wondering how you accumulated your seeming encyclopedic knowledge of Portugal and Spain. But seriously, it sounds to me like you could write a little book about your experiences on the road, including useful tips about outfitting and what to pack as well as where to go.

  2. I am curious what some of the t-shirts said...


  3. Greg, I would encourage you or anyone else who wants to try the camino to do so- learn some Spanish, read up on what and why you are doing, and I will happily provide advice on how to go about it and my recommended equipment list. I thought my list was complete, but a day or so into walking, I remembered that I forgot to bring a rubber sink stoper- it works much better for clothes washing when there is no stopper provided. I got by with wadded up toilet paper, but that leaves little dandruffy looking pieces on your clothes. Another thing I plan for any future caminos is to go alone- I simply like walking faster than most people, like the solitude of the walk, and find that I meet plenty of people in the albergues for talk and meal sharing after the day's walk.

    Julia- Almost any stupid t shirt slogan you can think of, like "Follow me", plus you would be surprised how many Harvard faculty are wearing t shirts proclaiming the fact!