We suggest you cycle the Camino de Santiago from one of its most emblematic starting points: the beautiful Pyrenean village of Saint-Jean-Pied-de-Port, very close to the Spanish-French border. You will cycle the entire French Way in 15 fantastic stages that will take you through cities such as Pamplona, Burgos or León, the vineyards of La Rioja, the Castilian plains, the Pyrenean heights and the mythical Cebreiro and finally to the holy city of Compostela.
▌Day 1. Starting your Camino de Santiago by bike in Saint-Jean-Pied-de-Port
Every route of the Camino de Santiago has its emblematic spots, and the small Pyrenean village of Saint-Jean-Pied-de-Port is one of the best known on the French Way. It is worth a visit and, if you have rented a bicycle for your Camino, it is worth doing it on it to get used to its mechanics. It is not for nothing that it is listed as one of the most beautiful towns in France.
In its streets you can perfectly feel the weight of history, from the Middle Ages, when it was part of the kingdom of Navarre, to the present day. Be sure to visit the citadel and the church of Santa María, a beautiful Gothic example which, together with the cathedral of Bayonne (through which the so-called Camino del Norte passes) is one of the best examples of the style in the whole of the French Basque Country.
Distance: 26 - 28 km. Duration: 4-5 hours. AccommodationRoncesvalles
First day of the Camino, properly speaking. The first stage of this Camino de Santiago by bike is by far the shortest of the route that we propose and there is a reason for this: unless you cycle frequently, it is important to adapt progressively to the challenge it represents. In addition, it is essentially mountainous, as it crosses part of the Pyrenees, so it will require more physical effort than a conventional stage.
To reach the goal of the day in Roncesvalles you will have to decide between two variants of the Camino. The first ascends through the Cize passes (also called Napoleon's route) and, although it is technically more difficult and quite tough, with a total ascent of 1315 m and gradients of up to 13%, it offers some of the most impressive panoramic views of the entire French Way.
The other option is the so-called Valcarlos route, which leads to Roncesvalles passing through this small border village. You will also have to face significant slopes (900 m accumulated), but in general it is gentler (average gradient of 6%). In any case, depending on when you do your Camino, this may be the only variant available, as the Cize heights are closed and the passage forbidden from 1 November to 31 March, as it is impracticable. Particularly for bicycles.
Whichever route you take, you will find the end of the journey in Roncesvalles (in Basque, Orreaga), a place halfway between the real and the mythical. The small town is today a place dedicated to the Camino and oriented towards pilgrims, as is shown by its heritage: an incredible monumental ensemble made up of the hospital, the chapel of Sancti Spiritus, the church of Santiago, the chapel of San Agustín, the church of the Royal Collegiate Church of Santa María, the museum and the library.
▌Day 3. Stage Roncesvalles - Pamplona
Distance: 48 km. Duration: 4-5 hours. Accommodation: Pamplona
The second day of your French Way by bike, which you will start in Roncesvalles to reach the historic capital of the Basque Country: Pamplona. The route is broken but much easier than on the first day, accompanied mainly by wooded areas of oak and beech trees, and the charm of small picturesque villages such as Zubiri (and its Rabia bridge) or Villaba-Atarrabia. The main difficulty will be the ascent to the Mezkiritz pass (960 m above sea level) and the Erro pass (801 m above sea level).
On your arrival in Pamplona (in Basque Iruña) don't miss a visit to the historic quarter where you can enjoy the cathedral, the town hall and the citadel, among others. In the vicinity of the Plaza del Castillo and the streets San Nicolás, San Gregorio, Estafeta and Navarrería you will find the best-known places to go out in the city. pintxos.
▌Day 4. Stage Pamplona - Estella
Distance: 44.5 km. Duration: 4-5 hours. Accommodation: Estella-Lizarra
This stage is usually divided into two parts with a very distinct profile. The first 12 km, up to the Alto del Perdón (780 m above sea level) have a permanent uphill profile. Afterwards, 4 km of steep descent and the rest of the route is much flatter and gentle.
The most interesting thing about this stage is the number of villages of great interest for pilgrims on bicycle. In particular Puente La Reina (Gares), where pilgrims come from the Somport route or Camino Aragonés, and Estella (Lizarra), which will be the end of the stage. In the middle, we recommend that you do not pass by the Templar church of Eunate, one of the most unique temples on the whole of the French Route. The detour from Muruzabal is well signposted and well worth it.
▌Day 5. Stage Estella - Logroño
Distance: 49 km. Duration: 4-5 hours. Accommodation: Logroño
This stage begins with a curious surprise: as soon as you leave Estella you will come across the famous wine fountain of the monastery of Nuestra Señora Real de Irache (Iratxe). If you have not visited them the day before, we recommend that you take the time to make the visit. The monks of Irache received the pilgrims who came to the hospital with a glass of wine. Many of them arrived ill and the wine became a restorative.
Most of the stage runs along dirt tracks with a slight climb of just over a hundred metres that takes us through cereal fields and vineyards to Villamayor de Monjardín. On the way we then pass Los Arcos, Sansol and Torres del Río - where we recommend a visit to the 12th century Romanesque church of the Santo Sepulcro (Holy Sepulchre).
From there, the profile becomes more complicated in the direction of Viana, where you will arrive between vineyards and olive groves, before descending a long way to Logroño, leaving Navarre behind and entering the Rioja region, famous for its wines.
▌Day 6. Stage Logroño - Santo Domingo de la Calzada
Distance: 50 km. Duration: 4-5 hours. Accommodation: Santo Domingo de la Calzada
The exit from Logroño is past the Grajera reservoir and in the direction of Navarrete. On this stretch you will find the ruins of the old pilgrims' hospital of San Juan de Acre, founded in 1185. From there, with a gentle ascent, the Way continues towards the Alto de San Antón, which leads to the very interesting town of Nájera through a rural area.
From there, the stretch continues peacefully between farm tracks that show the transition from vineyards to cereal crops. At the end of the day, the cathedral of Santo Domingo and the striking story of the saint after whom it is named await you.
▌Day 7. Stage Santo Domingo de la Calzada - Burgos
Distance: 72 km. Duration: 6-7 hours. Accommodation: Burgos
The sixth stage of this Camino de Santiago by bike is the longest so far. Just over 70 km that will allow you to make significant progress taking advantage of the flatter and friendlier profile of this area. The main difficulty of this day is in the distance, but it should not be a problem after almost a week on the bike.
At the pass halfway between Grañón and Redecilla del Camino you finally leave La Rioja to enter the region of Castilla y León, through which more than half of the French Way passes. When you get to Redecilla del Camino, don't pass by without visiting the church of the Virgen de la Calle. It is well worth a visit. Then the Way continues to Belorado and, further on, to the foot of the so-called Montes de Oca.
From this point onwards the stage becomes a little more complicated, but we are close to the day's goal. There is still a steep climb that eases off before reaching San Juan de Ortega, and the steep but pleasant section of the Sierra de Atapuerca, the gateway to Burgos. To reach the city, we recommend that you take the Castañares bypass, which adds only half a kilometre to the route and, in exchange, will take you away from the industrial areas typical of the outskirts of the capital. Burgos, the end of the stage, is well worth a visit (with its Gothic cathedral and the monastery of Las Huelgas) and a taste of its gastronomy. Suckling lamb is the star dish, and yemas (egg yolks) its best-known dessert.
▌Day 8. Stage Burgos - Frómista
Distance: 65 km. Duration: 4 hours. Accommodation: Frómista
Eighth day of your cycling adventure on the Camino de Santiago. It will be time to enter the area of Tierra de Campos, with a much more homogeneous landscape and a much flatter and easier terrain. The hardness of this stage, especially in summer, lies in the lack of intermediate towns - and therefore of services. We recommend that you stock up on water and food so that you can take breaks without having to wait to reach the towns.
Even so, interspersed among the monotonous but beautiful landscape, you will pass through some of great interest, such as Castrojeriz - with its medieval layout and castle - before reaching Frómista, a small town where the Romanesque church of San Martín stands out, a model for many others along the French Way.
Frómista and its Romanesque church of San Martín, or Villalcázar de Sirga and its church of the Virgen Blanca, before reaching Carrión de los Condes at the end of the day, a larger town with an important heritage.
▌Day 9. Stage Frómista - Sahagún
Distance: 58 km. Duration: 4 hours. Accommodation: Sahagún
This new day repeats the pattern of the previous day: plains surrounded by cereal fields. When you reach the town of Campos, just before crossing the river Ucieza, you will have to decide whether to continue along the official route or take the variant via Villovieco. If you opt for the variant, you will find a pleasant path along the river Ucieza, which is half a kilometre longer if you return to the official route at Villarmentero de Campos; or one kilometre if you take it at Villalcázar de Sirga. Without a doubt, we recommend the variant to go along the river bank. On arrival in Villalcázar de Sirga, be sure to visit the 13th-century church of Santa María la Blanca before continuing almost six kilometres to Carrión de los Condes. From there, 17 kilometres await you without intermediate towns to Calzadilla de la Cueza, a tough stretch for pilgrims on foot, but not so much for those who do it by bicycle.
This eighth stage of the French Way by bike will allow you to enjoy Sahagún and visit the churches of San Tirso and San Lorenzo, two of the most complete examples of Mudejar architecture on the Pilgrim's Way to Santiago de Compostela. And also the Sanctuary of La Peregrina, with its beautiful Mozarabic plasterwork. A leisurely stroll through the streets of Sahagún to soak up its mediaeval atmosphere is a real treat.
▌Day 10. Stage Sahagún - León
Distance: 56 km. Duration: 4 hours. Accommodation: Leon
This stage of the Camino de Santiago by bicycle is practically flat, with a small oscillation in altitude between 800 and 880 m. From Sahagún you will have to choose your itinerary: head towards El Burgo Ranero along the traditional route or towards Calzadilla de los Hermanillos along the so-called Vía Trajana. The choice is yours! If you take the traditional route, you will only pass through two towns where you can get your strength and provisions, Calzada del Coto and Bercianos del Real Camino. From El Burgo Ranero, where pilgrims usually stop on foot, the stretch to León can become monotonous. The goal, however, is worth all the effort.
León would not be the city it is if it were not for the Camino de Santiago and the pilgrims. But, in return, it gives back to the visitor a vast heritage that makes it one of the points of greatest cultural interest of all the routes that make up the Way of St. James. You should definitely visit the Gothic cathedral of Santa María, with its impressive stained glass windows, and the crypt of the Basilica of San Isidoro, known as the "Sistine Chapel of Romanesque architecture". But hurry up, tickets to San Isidoro are very limited and, if you are sure, let us know when you make your reservation so we can arrange it for you.
▌Day 11. Stage León - Astorga
Distance: 50 km. Duration: 4-5 hours. Accommodation: Astorga
To do this new stage you will first have to leave León, which can be quite long considering that the first two towns of the day (Trobajo del Camino and La Virgen del Camino) are so close to the city that they seem like an extension of it. After leaving them, you have two options: the traditional route, which follows the N-120, or an alternative route that is a little longer but which takes you off on tracks and secondary roads that are much quieter. The destination is the same: Hospital de Órbigo, half of the stage that awaits you with its fantastic long medieval bridge.
After leaving Hospital de Órbigo behind, another fork in the road where you will have to decide your route: along the road or along tracks and fields until you reach the Cruz de Toribio pass, which offers magnificent panoramic views of Astorga. The only difficulty on this stretch will be overcoming the change in altitude. The reward: the small and pleasant city of Astorga, with its Gothic cathedral, its modernist Episcopal palace and its historic area whose roots go back to the times of Roman Asturica Augusta.
▌Day 12. Stage Astorga - Ponferrada
Distance: 53 km. Duration: 4-5 hours. Accommodation: Ponferrada
From Astorga to Ponferrada there are just over 53 km which, unlike the previous days, will begin to show more pronounced slopes. The plains of Tierra de Campos are left behind, and the Maragatería gives way to the Bierzo region, the gateway to Galicia. The section presents a long and staggered ascent to another of those mythical heights of the Camino de Santiago: the Cruz de Ferro, at 1502 metres above sea level. From there it is just under half a stage to the industrial city of Ponferrada. Although the pedestrian path is accessible for cyclists from Astorga to Manjarín, from there to Molinaseca the steep descent makes it advisable to ride on the road. Particular caution should be exercised on the steep descents (between 3.5% and 14%) before the Acebo de San Miguel and Molinaseca. In the latter town we recommend you stop and take a walk. Its town centre has a special charm.
From Molinaseca it is just over 7 km to Ponferrada. On your arrival in Ponferrada we recommend you visit the Templar Castle, the church of Santo Tomás de las Ollas, from the 10th century and one of the best examples of Mozarabic style, or the basilica of La Encina, in Renaissance style and which houses the patron saint of El Bierzo.
▌Day 13. Stage Ponferrada - Las Herrerías
Distance: 44 km. Duration: 4 hours. Accommodation: Las Herrerías / Vega de Valcarce
Last stage of this Camino de Santiago by bike before entering Galicia: 44 km that will leave you at the foot of the Ancares mountain range. In this section, much easier technically than the previous day, the pedestrian path is easily cyclable. The Camino runs here through the placid valley of El Bierzo and passes through places of interest such as Cacabelos or Villafranca (in Galician, Vilafranca), capital of this historic region. At the entrance you will pass by the Romanesque church of Santiago, where you will find the famous Puerta del Perdón (Forgiveness Gate). Here, disabled pilgrims could gain the Jubilee thanks to a privilege granted by Pope Calixtus III in the 15th century without having to reach Santiago de Compostela.
Some people prefer to continue the stage to O Cebreiro, the small village that marks the end of one of the hardest and most famous climbs of the French Way. However, in Proguías we recommend you to spend the night in Las Herrerías or in Vega de Valcarce to face the hard climb to O Cebreiro the next day, having rested completely.
▌Day 14. Stage Las Herrerías - Sarria
Distance: 46 km (via San Xil) / 52 km (via Samos) Duration: 5-6 hours. Accommodation: Sarria
Here is the great challenge of this Camino de Santiago by bike. Whoever has not climbed the Cize passes between Saint-Jean-Pied-de-Port and Roncesvalles will face today the hardest stage of this route. The day is divided into two parts: the first is to reach the village of O Cebreiro, with a steep climb with gradients of between 7% and 25%. When you reach the top, we recommend you stop at this magical place: a charming mountain village with an interesting Romanesque temple and some legends that you can enjoy while you recover your strength.
The next part is much more relaxed, with a stretch of 8.5 km that continues in gentle ascent to the Alto do Poio (1339 m) and, from there, a progressive and long descent to Sarria. At the height of Triacastela, you will have to decide between taking the Camino through San Xil, with a new slope of up to 8%, or through Samos, 6 km longer but much smoother and which, in addition, offers you the possibility of visiting this small and interesting town and one of the most important monasteries in Galicia: the one of San Julián (in Galician, san Xián).
The day ends, in any case, in Sarria, one of the towns most linked to the Camino de Santiago in Galicia. Not surprisingly, it is just over 100 km from Santiago and is therefore one of the main starting points for those pilgrims on foot who have fewer days and want to reach Santiago in 1 week. Those who do it by bike will arrive in 2 days more.
▌Day 15. Stage Sarria - Melide
Distance: 60 km Duration: 6 hours. Accommodation: Melide
Penultimate day of this Camino de Santiago by bicycle. The stage is divided into two sections: from Sarria to Portomarín it presents some technical complexities, not so much because of the slopes, which are minor, but because of the road surface: an important part of this route runs along paths and corredoiras that, in the rainy season, can be muddy and make progress difficult. From Portomarín to Palas de Rei, the dynamic changes completely, as you will be on a tarmac track with practically no traffic and very quiet.
From Palas de Rei to Melide, the proposed end of the stage, there are complications again, again due to the road surface. In general, it is a stage with constant changes, but with a good reward: the landscapes of inland Galicia and, on reaching Melide, a good portion of octopus - probably one of the most emblematic dishes of the famous Galician gastronomy.
▌Day 16. Stage Melide - Santiago de Compostela
Distance: 51 km Duration: 5-6 hours. Accommodation: Santiago de Compostela
Day 16 of the route, in which you will face your last stage of the Camino de Santiago by bike and arrive in the city of Santiago de Compostela. The day will again be marked by beautiful rural and wooded landscapes. However, as you approach the capital of Galicia you will notice a logical increase in traffic on the road sections, and you will see a more humanised landscape. The route will take you through Arzúa and O Pedrouzo, two towns where many pilgrims gather every day on foot.
You will feel the first stirring of the heart on your arrival at Monte do Gozo, from where you will be able to see the towers of the cathedral just 5 km away. It doesn't matter where you're from, how far you've walked or cycled, or how many times you've done the route: it continues to impress and create a mood of jubilation that will accompany you until you reach the Plaza del Obradoiro, at the foot of the magnificent cathedral of Compostela. Congratulations: you've made it!
▌Day 17. End of your Camino de Santiago by bike
Distance: 60 km Duration: 6 hours. Accommodation: Santiago de Compostela
The last day of your cycling trip along the French Camino de Santiago is a tribute to your efforts. After a well-deserved and refreshing rest, you will have the whole day free to explore the Holy City: its Cathedral and the rest of its monuments.
If you want, we can also help you with this. And, if you have time, we have some complementary activities that may be of interest. Be sure to contact us at.
During the Camino, sleeping well and resting is essential. Here are some images of some of the accommodation we work with on this route.
Frequent Asked Questions
Can I choose the dates I want?
Yes, in our programmes you choose the starting date. The Camino de Santiago can be done all year round, although in January and February many accommodations are closed for rest, so if you want to do it in those dates, we recommend you that you consult us first.
Where are the accommodations?
Most of the accommodation is located next to the Camino, at the place where you will finish each stage. When you make your booking we will generate for you the documentation with the exact address and other location data.
If the available accommodation is more than 1.5 km from the Camino, we will provide a transfer at no extra cost to you.
How does the transport of luggage between accommodations work?
In our programmes we include the option of hiring a luggage transfer service, with a limit of 1 piece of luggage of up to 20 kg per person. There is the option to increase the number of items, but this is not usually necessary. In addition, we will give you luggage identifiers (similar to those at airports) so that you can leave your backpack with the accommodation staff, properly identified, and the shuttle will pick it up there. It is important to do this before 8:00 am, so that our team can take it to the next accommodation before your arrival. In addition, if you plan to travel with more luggage than the Camino, we can also transport the luggage you are not going to use to your last accommodation, so that you can then continue your journey.
What do private transfers consist of?
Although the Camino is done on foot or by bicycle, you may need a vehicle from the airport to the starting point of your pilgrimage or to make a trip to a place of interest near the end of your stage. In these cases, we provide you with private transport vehicles whose price varies depending on the distance. You can see it among the options by clicking on "I want to book my Camino".
What is travel insurance?
By default and compulsory, all our programmes include travel insurance with specific coverage for the Camino de Santiago. You can see the details in the section Insurance of our website.
What does 24-hour assistance mean?
All our programmes include a 24-hour telephone support service, should you need help at any time during your experience. This means that you can also contact us outside office hours (when you are on pilgrimage).
How do I make a reservation?
If you want to book this programme, you have the following options available a form where you can indicate the starting date, the type of accommodation and a series of optional services. The price will be updated according to the options you choose, so you have full control. Once you have configured your trip, click on "Book" to make the payment.
Once we receive your request, you will automatically receive a proof of purchase and within 48 working hours we will contact you to confirm the details of your booking and provide you with the documentation.
What if I can't find the programme I need?
In Proguías we also work with tailor-made programmes (short stages, intermediate rest days, itineraries different from those proposed, etc.). If you are looking for a Camino that meets your needs/preferences, you can ask us for a quote here.
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