The three routes of the Portuguese Camino from Porto


The Portuguese Camino from Porto has completely different routes; the Central Route, the Coastal Route, and the Litoral Means. All routes begin at Se Cathedral in Porto. All three routes merge in Redondela, Spain, km earlier than Santiago de Compostela. It’s attainable to mix all three routes or select one and stroll it from the begin to the top. On this submit, I describe the primary stage of every of the three Camino de Santiago routes from Porto.

For a lot of pilgrims, the Portuguese Camino begins in Porto. In reality, the route is for much longer as a result of it begins in Lisbon. The Lisbon to Porto a part of the Camino will not be a very fashionable route.

Se Cathedral in Porto
Se Cathedral in Porto is the place all three Portuguese Camino routes begin

What number of routes are on the Portuguese Camino from Porto?

There are 3 routes on the Portuguese Camino de Santiago from Porto; the Central Route, the Coastal Route, and the Litoral Means or Senda Litoral. The Litoral Means is the one which goes alongside the coast from Porto. The Central and the Coastal routes go inland. 

I walked out of Porto for 3 consecutive days following the three completely different routes of the Portuguese Camino de Santiago. The Litoral Means is by far my favourite because it goes alongside the coast and presents spectacular surroundings. The Coastal Route from Porto is my least favourite as a result of it goes by means of some industrial areas and previous the airport. I wouldn’t say the stroll on the Coastal Route was ugly or disagreeable it was okay I simply appreciated it the least, particularly the center half the place you stroll by means of the economic space and subsequent to the airport. In addition to the primary stage, the Coastal Route is one in every of our favourite Camino de Santiago routes.

A fantastic coastal scenery on the Litoral Camino from Porto
The surroundings on the Litoral Means of the Portuguese Camino from Porto is by far my favourite

Greatest locations to remain in Porto earlier than the Camino

One of the best is to remain close to the Cathedral so in your first day on the Camino you can begin the stroll proper out of your resort and don’t must take the metro or a bus to get to the Cathedral first.

Albergue de Peregrinos de Porto is 3 km away from the Cathedral on the Central/Coastal Camino routes. If you wish to keep there you are able to do the primary 3 km from Se Cathedral to Albergue the day earlier than you begin your stroll so on the day you’ll be able to stroll out of the Albergue and proceed on the Camino. If you happen to’re going to stroll the Litoral Means you then’ll must get from the albergue to the Cathedral by public transport or taxi after which begin strolling.

Which Camino route from Porto is the very best to stroll?

It depends upon which route of the Portuguese Camino you wish to stroll. If you happen to plan to stroll the Central Route I’d recommend following it from the beginning. You can too stroll out of Porto following the Senda Litoral, however in that case, you’ll must swap to the Central Route in Vila do Conde which provides one further day to your itinerary. 

If you wish to stroll the Coastal Route of the Portuguese Camino I’d recommend strolling out of Porto following the Litoral Means. For my part, it’s a extra stunning route and it makes extra sense to stroll alongside the coast since that’s what you wish to do. The Litoral Means and the Coastal Route take part Vila do Conde. From there they observe roughly the identical trajectory. The Litoral Means sticks extra to the seaside whereas the Coastal Route typically goes by means of cities and villages. 

The stroll from Porto to Vila do Conde on the Litoral Means is 4 km longer than on the Coastal Route; 33 km vs 29 km. You don’t must stroll it in in the future. Even 29 km in my view is an excessive amount of for the primary day on the Camino. 

As an choice, you’ll be able to mix all three routes. Stroll out of Porto following the Litoral Means, then proceed on the Coastal Route from Vila do Conde to Caminha from there stroll to Valença and proceed on the Central Path to Santiago de Compostela. You possibly can add to your itinerary the Religious Variant of the Portuguese Camino from Pontevedra to Padrón.

What’s the most scenic route of the Portuguese Camino from Porto?

The Senda Litoray (Litoral Means) is in my view probably the most scenic route of the primary stage of the Portuguese Camino from Porto. The Coastal and the Central routes have stunning elements as effectively however it’s not as spectacular because the Litoral Means. I particularly loved the final 10 km to Vila Cha which had been alongside the coast previous a number of stunning seashores.

The coastal scenery along the boardwalk on the Litoral Way from Porto
It’s tough to argue that the coastal surroundings on the Litoral Means from Porto is spectacular

Evaluating the three routes; Central Route vs Coastal Route vs Litoral Means

Strolling floor

On each the Central and Coastal routes, you stroll solely on onerous surfaces with virtually half of the route being on cobbled stones that are identified to be powerful in your toes. 

On the Litoral Means, half of the route goes on boardwalks that are simpler in your toes. There aren’t any cobbled stones on the route.

Strolling on or alongside busy roads

Once more, the Litoral Means is the winner. You don’t stroll on the highway in any respect, not even 100 m. On the Central and Coastal routes you do stroll on the highway and subsequent to busy roads with a number of visitors.

Boardwalks on the Litoral Way of the Portuguese Camino from Porto
Wood boardwalks alongside the coast that you simply get to stroll rather a lot on the Litoral Means from Porto

Simple to navigate

Regardless of the Litoral Means not being marked for the primary 10 km in my view it’s the best path to stroll out of Porto. It’s very easy. You don’t want a map, indicators, or GPX. 

However, the Central and the Coastal routes are marked however the first two kilometers by means of the historic middle are complicated as a result of too many distractions round you it’s tough to identify Camino indicators. After the primary 2 km, each routes are fairly straightforward to observe.

Surroundings

For me, the Litoral Means is by far probably the most scenic route of the Portuguese Camino out of Porto. Sandy seashores, blue sea, fishermen’s villages, and wildflowers in spring months are the proper surroundings to begin the Camino with. 

The primary 2 km on the Central and the Coastal routes by means of the historic middle of Porto is sort of spectacular. You get to see a number of the highlights of the town. On the Central Route, I loved the final 5 km by means of a quiet rural space and the forest. The Coastal Route has its magnificence too; you’ll be able to see some countryside and forest. 

How busy are the routes?

I’d say to me it seemed just like the Litoral Means was the busiest route out of Porto. I walked all three routes in July so I imagine that point of the yr folks favor strolling alongside the coast. The Central Route had a good quantity of pilgrims too. On the Coastal Route out of Porto, there have been only a few pilgrims. Thoughts, that July general is a much less busy month than Might or September. I walked some elements of the Portuguese Camino in Might and there have been much more folks than in July. Homeowners of albergues and accommodations alongside the Camino route confirmed the identical.

A view of the Douro River and the center of Porto from Se Cathedral
Earlier than you begin strolling the chosen route of the Portuguese Camino be certain to benefit from the gorgeous views of the town from the lookout factors on the Cathedral

When is the very best time for strolling?

When is the finest time to stroll the Camino will rely upon a number of components. I walked the Portuguese Camino from Porto in Might, June, and July. For me even in July on the Central Route, it wasn’t extraordinarily scorching. I’d say from the climate standpoint the spring/summer time months between Might and mid-October are the very best time for strolling.

July and August are the busiest vacation months in Portugal and Spain however the Portuguese Camino route quite the opposite not as busy as in Might, June, and September. July and August is perhaps a superb time to stroll the Central Route if you wish to escape the gang on the Camino. There are a lot of festivals and celebrations all through Portugal in July and August. It’s very probably you’re going to get to witness a few of them for those who stroll the Portuguese Camino in one in every of these months.

It’s higher to not stroll the Coastal or the Litoral Means in July and August if you wish to keep in non-public rooms as a result of most locations by the ocean are fully-booked and the lodging costs enhance rather a lot throughout these peak months. If you happen to’re planning on staying in albergues it shouldn’t be an issue. It would even be simpler to discover a dorm mattress in July and August than in Might and September.

One of the streets in the old town of Vila do Conde, Portugal
The historic middle of Vila do Conde the place the Coastal Route and the Litoral Means be a part of

The place in Porto do the Camino routes begin?

All 3 routes begin at Se Cathedral within the historic middle of Porto. To be trustworthy I discover route marking from the Cathedral complicated and never very clear.

The Central and the Coastal Route

The Central and Coastal Routes begin on the stairs (Calçada de Don Pedro Pitões) throughout the sq. from the principle entrance to the Cathedral. There may be an official signal and a few yellow arrows pointing down. There’s a vacationer info workplace down the steps on the proper the place you may get a map of Porto and inquire in regards to the Camino route.

A map of the Portuguese Camino route through the historical center of Porto
A map of the primary 800 m from the Cathedral on the Central and Coastal Routes. You possibly can see it’s fairly tough with many turns. Mainly from the Cathedral get right down to R. das Flores and take the primary left. From there it’s simpler to observe the route.

As soon as down the steps maintain left you’ll see two yellow arrows painted on the backside of the wall pointing in reverse instructions. I took the proper route however I imagine each routes find yourself on the identical place R. das Flores, a pedestrian avenue. As soon as there it’s very tempting to observe this avenue however you need to take the primary left flip to Rua do Ferraz. From there it’s a bit simpler to observe the arrows.

If at some stage you lose the route the very best can be to seek out Igreja do Carmo on Google. Maps and stroll there. From the church (Igreja do Carmo) the route is simple to observe. Yow will discover a yellow arrow on the wall on the proper aspect of the church (going through it).

Observe!!! There are a few extra steel planks with arrows pointing proper I attempted to observe them however they don’t go any additional than the sq..

The Central Route and the Coastal Route are the identical for the primary 7 km from the Cathedral. At 7 km (in Padrão da Légua) they break up; the Central Route goes proper and the Coastal Route goes left in direction of the coast however it will get there solely in Vila do Conde.

A split on the Portuguese Camino in Padrão da Légua, Porto
The break up on the Portuguese Camino from Porto, in Padrão da Légua, 7 km from the Cathedral. The Central Route goes straight, the Coastal Route goes left.

The Litoral Means

The Litoral Means from the Cathedral goes alongside the river out of Porto to Matosinhos and from there continues alongside the coast. The simplest approach of discovering the route is to stroll from Se Cathedral right down to the river and proceed alongside it. The route will not be marked and for those who attempt to observe yellow arrows they could lead you in direction of the Central/Coastal Route.

Are the routes well-marked?

All three routes are marked with conventional yellow arrows painted on the bottom, partitions, poles, and many others. Now and again you see official route marking reminiscent of picket or stone indicators, and steel plaques on the bottom. 

The Coastal and the Central Routes (the primary 7 km it’s the identical route) are marked fairly effectively ranging from the Cathedral. The primary 2 kilometers by means of the historic middle of Porto are a bit complicated as a result of there are lots of advertisements, automobiles, folks, and many others. It’s a must to look cautious to not miss a yellow arrow. 

The primary 10 km of the Litoral Means will not be marked. The route marking begins on the info workplace in Matosinhos. From there on you’ll be able to observe conventional Camino indicators. Regardless of not being marked the Litoral Means is the best path to stroll out of Porto. From the Cathedral you go right down to the Douro River and observe it after which the coast for 10 km. It’s a really easy route.

Bright and colorful fishermen's houses north of Porto on the Litoral Way
These colourful fishermen’s homes for me had been one of many highlights of the Litoral Means

The Central Route – Porto to Vilarinho, 27 km/16,7 mi

  • Distance – 27 km/16,7 mi
  • Time – 6 hours
  • Ascent – 336 m
  • Descent – 355 m
  • Strolling floor – 14,5 km/9 mi – tar highway and asphalt, 12 km/7,4 mi – cobblestones, 500 m/0,3 mi – footpath

The primary 7 km/4,3 mi the Central and the Coastal route are on the identical path. 

For the primary 15 km/9,3 mi, there are lots of eating places, cafes, and retailers to cease for breakfast or espresso. After then there are locations to cease however not as many as within the first half.

The Central Route from Porto GPX information

To make your stroll simpler you’ll be able to obtain our GPX information. The information are our courtesy and for personal use solely. No unauthorized public or business use is allowed.

The Central Route description

The primary 2 km/1,2 mi are by means of the historic middle of Porto from Se Cathedral to Igreja (church) do Carmo. It’s the most tough half to navigate particularly the primary 700 m from the Cathedral. If you happen to lose the path discover Igreja do Carmo on Google Maps and stroll there. From the church observe Rua de Cedofeida (the road on the proper going through the church). From there the Camino route is sort of straightforward to observe it mainly goes straight all the best way to Vilarinho.

Between 2 km/1,2 mi and 5 km/3,1 mi, you stroll by means of the residential space of Porto.

2,8 km/1,7 miAlbergue de Peregrinos de Porto. If you happen to’re going to remain within the Albergue and planning to stroll the Central or the Coastal Route you’ll be able to stroll the half from the Cathedral to the Albergue a day earlier than so within the morning you’ll be able to stroll out of the Albergue and proceed on the Camino. In any other case, you need to take the metro to go to the Cathedral after which stroll previous the Albergue.

Between 5 km/3,1 mi and 11 km/6,8 mi, the route goes by means of quiet neighborhoods.

6 km/3,7 mi – a few huge supermarkets (LIDL, Continente) the place you may get a well-priced meal.

7 km/4,3 mi – the break up (on the left aspect of the road) in Padrão da Légua on the intersection of R. Nova do Seixo and R. Fonte Velha.

8,4 km/5,2 mi – a grocery store (ALDI)

11 km/6,8 mi – 12 km/7,4 mi – alongside the highway (sidewalk) by means of the forest

12 km/7,4 mi – 14,5 km/9 mi – by means of cities alongside the busy roads

14,5 km/9 mi – a few huge supermarkets (LIDL, Pingo Doce)

15 km/9,3 mi – 16 km – industrial space however not a really busy one

16 km – 16,4 km/10 mi – on a highway

17 km/10,5 mi – a store and a bar

A small town north of Porto with beautiful old houses
One of many small cities on the Central Route between Porto and Vilarinho

18,5 km/11,4 mi – Mosteiro, a small city with a restaurant

20 km/12,4 mi – Vila, a small city with a restaurant and a store

21 km/13 mi – 21,5 km/13,4 mi – on the highway

21,5 km/13,4 mi – Gião, a small city with a restaurant. You possibly can stamp your Pilgrim’s Passport at a stand with a stamp on the left aspect of the road.

22,4 km/14 mi – a small grocery store

23 km/14,2 mi – on the Doce Giao cafe there’s a route break up. I’d advocate following the choice route that turns proper and goes by means of a quiet space. The left route is on a busy slender highway it’s not a secure strolling choice. There’s a very good guesthouse Casa Mindela, 800 m from the Camino route. You possibly can cease there as an alternative of strolling all the best way to Vilarinho. We stayed there for a few days and we actually appreciated it.

24 km/15 mi – a bar and a store

25 km/15,5 mi – an ATM and a restaurant

26 km/16,1 mi – Municipal Albergue do Mosteiro do Veirão.

26,5 km/16,4 mi – 27 km/16,7 mi – a footpath by means of the forest

27 km/16,7 mi – Vilarinho, a small city with a store, a restaurant, and a non-public albergue/visitor home.

Locations to remain in Vilarinho

Forest scenery on the Portuguese Camino just before Vilarinho
The forest on the final 500 m on the Central Route from Porto

The Coastal Route – Porto to Vila do Conde, 29 km/18 mi

  • Distance – 29 km/18 mi
  • Time – 6-7 hours
  • Ascent – 255 m
  • Descent – 320 m
  • Strolling floor – 17 km/10,5 mi – asphalt or tar highway and 12 km/7,4 mi – cobblestones

The Coastal Route from Porto GPX information

You need to use our GPX information in your system to make your stroll out of Porot simpler. The information are for personal use solely.

The Coastal Route description

The primary 7 km/4,3 mi on the Coastal Route from Porto is similar as on the Central Route. For more information on that half test the part above.

Between 7 km/4,3 mi and 9 km/5,6 mi, you stroll by means of a really quiet neighborhood of Porto with small homes lined up alongside the road. 

The countryside scenery outside of Porto on the Camino route
Strolling by means of the countryside was the very best a part of the Coastal Route from Porto

9 km/5,6 mi – 11 km/6,8 mi – the Camino route goes by means of a rural space.

11 km/6,8 mi – 12 km/7,4 mi – by means of an industrial space with many vans. I walked it on Sunday so it was quiet I believe that on weekdays it’s busy.

13 km/8 mi – a store and a restaurant

13,5 km/8,3 mi – a city with an ATM, cafe, and store. The following place to cease for meals can be at 22 km.

15,8/9,8 mi – 17,5 km/10,8 mi – strolling subsequent to Porto Airport

21 km/13 mi – 22 km/13,6 mi – a quiet highway by means of the forest

22 km/13,6 mi – an enormous shopping center (Vila do Conde Porto Vogue Outlet)

24 km/15 mi – Mindelo, a small city with a store and a restaurant

26 km/16 mi – a store, a restaurant, and a bar

29 km/18 mi – Vila do Conde

Locations to remain in Vila do Conde

One of the narrow cobbled streets of Vila do Conde, Portugal
The historic middle of Vila do Conde for me was the spotlight of the Coastal Route from Porto

The Litoral Means (Senda Litoral) – Porto to Vila Cha, 29 km/16 mi

  • Distance – 26 km/16 mi
  • Time – 5-6 hours
  • Ascent – 242 m
  • Descent – 273 m
  • Strolling floor – 15 km/9,3 mi – asphalt, 10 km/6,2 mi – boardwalks, 1 km/0,6 mi – cobbled

The Litoral Means from Porto GPX information

You possibly can obtain our GPX information and use them in your system to make navigation simpler. The information are our courtesy. No unauthorized public or business use is allowed.

The primary 10 km/6,2 mi on the Litoral Means from the Cathedral in Porto to Matosinhos will not be marked. It doesn’t imply it’s tough to seek out the route the truth is the Senda Litoral is the best path to observe out of Porto. From Se Cathedral get right down to the Douro River and observe it until you might be out of the town.

The route from the Cathedral to the river described in Brierley’s guidebook is the shortest approach however you don’t must observe any path simply stroll to the river and proceed alongside it in direction of Ponte da Arrabita (Arrabita Bridge) and the Atlantic Ocean. Thoughts, the guidebook says to observe orange arrows however, there aren’t any arrows possibly there have been up to now. 

As an choice, for the primary 5,5 km/3,4 mi, you’ll be able to take the well-known yellow tram (#1 and #18). It just about follows the identical route because the Camino. Passeio Alegre is the title of the tram cease the place you get off.

For all the 26 km/16 mi, there are many cafes and eating places to cease at.

Traditional metal poles with a yellow arrow that are used to marked the Portuguese Camino route from Porto
From the knowledge workplace in Matosinhos, the Litoral Means of the Portuguese Camino is well-marked

The Litoral Means route description

For many of the first 6 km/3,7 mi, you stroll subsequent to the Douro River aside from a brief half simply earlier than Jardim do Passeio Alegre. You don’t have to fret about discovering the best way simply observe the identical avenue and it’ll take you again to the river.

6 km/3,7 mi – São João Baptista da Foz Fortress and Barra do Douro Lighthouse

A beautiful promenade (esplanada) on the Senda Litoral north of Porto
The attractive promenade on the Litoral Means between Porto and Matosinhos

10,5 km/6,5 mi – Vacationer Data Workplace in Matosinhos. From there the Litoral Means is well-marked with conventional yellow arrows and official Camino indicators. Some pilgrims take a bus/metro prepare from Porto to Matosinhos and begin strolling from there. Bus #500 and metro line A go from Porto to Matosinhos.  

10,5 km/6,5 mi – 13 km/8 mi – the Camino goes by means of the town (Matosinhos). It’s the solely a part of the Litoral Means the place you need to take note of the Camino indicators. 

11,7 km/7,2 mi – go over the bridge Ponte móvel de Leça to the opposite aspect of the river. From there stroll again to the coast.

13 km/8 mi – the knowledge workplace the place you may get a stamp. They advised me there which you could purchase a Credential (Pilgrim’s Passport) at one of many newspaper (tabaco) kiosks close by. If you happen to nonetheless don’t have it you’ll be able to inquire there and purchase your Credential on the best way.

From 13 km/8 mi you stroll alongside the coast all the best way to Vila Cha. There are many cafes and eating places and a few supermarkets alongside the best way.

15 km/9,3 mi – the start of the boardwalks. From there on you stroll virtually fully on boardwalks.

20 km/12,4 mi – an enormous grocery store (ALDI, 400 m away from the boardwalks)

24 km/15 mi – Labruge. There’s a non-public albergue 900 m away from the Camino route.

26 km/16 mi – Vila Cha. The municipal albergue in Vila Cha is about 800 m away from the coast and the Camino route. 

Locations to remain in Vila Cha

A view of Vila Cha and its beach from the Litoral Way of the Camino
Vila Cha is a stupendous small seaside city with a public albergue, an ideal place to cease on the primary day of the Portuguese Camino

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