Today was a ten out of ten on the Portuguese Coastal Way. I walked with a new Camino Amiga from Denmark, Erica, a seasoned peregrina who wanted to walk the same Way as I do: the Camino Litoral on the beach.
We had checked the maps and guides and for this stage the recommendation was to stay on the Coastal and avoid the Litoral because some areas of the beach did not have completed or repaired boardwalks between crossings or beach walkways that might have been damaged by weather.
Ah, but we are walking the Coastal Camino and so far much has been more resort and city than the seaside and village we dreamed. Our decision: follow the Litoral map carefully and avoid hazards.
As we walked on the boardwalk we talked to other pilgrims about their route and then saw a few people on the beach below. Soon we were walking the same sand.
Yes, we walked the Camino Portuguese Coastal Litoral, on the beach. On the sand and rocks, during low tide, on a truly spectacular Camino day.
I am a sea creature, born for water and sand and sea. This climate and environment calls my name and with my good fortune, my Camino walking companion for the day was eager to take the same route. With her guidebook and amazing built-in compass and sense of direction and both of us desiring to walk on sand, we began our adventure. To further assist us in navigating our route on the beach, we used my new Wise Pilgrim Map app recommended the night before by Fergus, a pilgrim from Ireland starting his first Camino that day.
By the end of the day we had walked more than 25 Kms through beach, forest, villages and roads to our home for the night in Chafè.
And who else was staying with us in the three room casa on the way to Viana de Costela? Our German friends who have also stayed in the last two hostels with us. No reservations, just good luck. And they, too, walked some of the same route.
We all went out to dinner, walking around this small town, looking for an open cafe, adding kilometers to our day’s tally. Finally the best pizza in a cafe across from our hostal.
This was my most amazing Camino walk, ever. Feet in the sand, wind in our faces, sound of the waves crashing, birds singing. And tomorrow is another day on the Seaside Camino Portuguese.
Bom Caminho, Irene