This itinerary takes you to a hallowed spot that was once the most popular destination in Spain: Santiago de Compostela, site of the tomb of Saint James the Apostle and the goal of countless, religious pilgrims for a millennium. You will even be staying in one of the places they stayed in (modernized a bit since then, of course, and rather more expensive now). Most of the destinations described are in the region of Galicia, which is basically, that part of Spain directly north of Portugal: the provinces of Lugo, Pontevedra, La Coruña, and Orense. It was at one time part of Portugal, but (as a result of some royal intrigues) was separated from that kingdom in 1128. Although everyone speaks Spanish, Galicia has its own special language (somewhat a mixture of Portuguese and Spanish). Because of this, you will notice some spelling variations in town names, depending on whether the Galician or the Castilian spelling is used. The area is separated from the rest of the country by several mountain ranges. Perhaps for that reason, Galicia seems to have kept its face turned to the sea and has developed a strong, seafaring tradition and economy. It is also the region that has maintained the strongest Celtic influence since the Celts invaded the peninsula around 3,000 years ago. Galician folk music still has the sound of bagpipes (called here the gaita), and the name Galicia is from the same root as Gaul and Wales. Galician cuisine, like that of Portugal, puts a lot of emphasis on cod (bacalao) prepared in many ways. Empanadas (folded meat or fish pies) are a typical dish, as is lacón con grelos, consisting of smoked pork shoulder and turnip greens. Shellfish are also commonly available. Be sure to try vieira (scallops), a regional specialty prepared in many delicious ways.
NOTE: This itinerary is excerpted from the E-Book title, Spain: Exceptional Places to Stay & Itineraries. You might want to consider the complete E-Book if you are considering any additional itineraries as there are ten for Spain and they are all duplicated in the more complete E-Book.
This E-Itinerary includes only recommendations (also excerpted from the E-Book title) for places to stay that are in close proximity to this featured itinerary route.
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Revised 2017 Edition