No music to wake up to this morning, only complaints of snorers that kept people awake most of the night. I didn’t hear any snorers, only some partiers who came in late and were quite loud and rude. I never saw that group of boys again. I don’t think they were pilgrims, but somehow had passports that allowed them to stay the night. They were in San Sabastian to have a good time.
The day before I had stopped at the first albergue that I came to after leaving the woods and heading into San Sabastian. This meant that I had close to a 5K walk to get to the other end of San Sabastian before I would start the climb out of town and onto Zarautz. As I walked I enjoyed the sandy beach views,
but didn’t enjoy all the garbage… plastic beer cups, beer bottles, food wrappers and more all over the streets of San Sabastian. I don’t understand why people feel it is okay to leave trash on the ground for someone else to pick up…
I hope it was a good party. The pilgrim life doesn’t exactly allow for crazy partying. Most pilgrims are in bed by at least 10PM, if not 1-2 hours earlier. And you will not be liked if you are arriving at 11PM, making noise as you get ready for bed. Some Albergues will have a curfew and lock the doors at that designated time.
After viewing the mess, I headed to the beach, took off my shoes and walked the rest of the way through town on the beach. Something you must try at least once.
After the beach, I found the first open coffee shop of the day, with beautiful flaky melt in your mouth croissants (I may have had 2 or 3 of them). Seeing the first open coffee shop of the day is always a delight!
After breakfast and a pick-me-up (coffee), I started the climb out of San Sabastian…
At the top of the long hill, I ran into this lovely water/rest stop…
Every now and then you will see places like this along the way set up by locals who live next to the path of the Camino. This particular stop had a book to sign, plus a stamp for pilgrim passports.
The days walk was a mixture of cement and dirt trails, above the coastline. Signs were plentiful marking the footpath well.
If you are wondering whether you can get cell phone reception on the trail, this guy apparently did… so it is possible! Just FYI, it is very rare to see someone hiking and talking on their phone 🙂
Besides meeting people, one of my most favorite things about walking along Camino footpaths, well most any footpaths in Europe, are the fury friends that I meet along the way. This hairy cow stole my heart during a down pour. He came right over and gave me a kiss and told me it was okay to take his photo. ADORABLE!
I also met this loyal watch dog, on guard during a kitty nap. UNBELIEVABLE! I learn so much from our furry friends.
The second half of this long day was through a rain storm, apparently there is a reason why this area is still so green in August! A reminder to bring your rain gear!
A few more rainy photos just so you know what you are getting yourself into 🙂
The rain kept coming, creating a rather strong desire for a town to pop up with a warm coffee shop that served some pintos/tapas. Eventually the trails led to streets which led to roads which led to crosses. Many times crosses were in sets of three, representing Jesus’s crucifixion.
and then finally into a town where I found pintos/tapas to eat in a warm restaurant.
I continued on in the rain to Zarautz, a coastal town with a long beach. The beach is known for being the longest in the Basque country. I had planned to stay the night there but the albergues were closed and hotels were close to one hundred dollars a night. I decided I would keep hiking in the rain to the next smaller less touristy town only 3 miles away.
As I left the town I noticed signs on the building letting tourists know that this was the Basque Country, neither Spain nor France. The Basque want all to know that they want to be free of Spanish and French control.
As I walked on, the rain started to let up and I could tell a beautiful evening was in store. I arrived in Getaria, a charming coastal town, with fewer tourists and available beds. I was very happy that I chose to walk on and out of the more crowded tourist town. Getaria had a much smaller beach, yet perfect size for a quick swim and chance to lay out in the first rays of the day. I highly recommend staying in this town for those who like a quieter atmosphere, yet still plenty of restaurants, culture and places of interest to see…
Next up… Getaria to Deba
Until next time, keep on trekking!