Another cool day and a relatively easy walk today.
We left Alberque Villares de Orbiga after breakfast – the entire experience here was delightful. It is owned and run by Martin & Merel, a very caring and competent team from The Netherlands. The website below describes this Albergue and offerings. Highly recommended to walk the extra 2km if they are operational. Martin & Merel spend winter in the Netherlands.
On the walk over the mountains rain threatened throughout the morning but only a few drops materialised
This first 11km stretch has no food/ refreshment offering so a great donativo based service has arisen – it is called La Sonrisa – The Smile. The other saying on the green dispensing table says “Creas lo que crees” – “Believe what you believe”
One of our camino friends Marie unfortunately fell and twisted her ankle on one of the downhill sections – she stopped at La Sonrisa and sat down elevating her leg with boot off and within minutes a stranger stopped sat next to her, offered an ankle brace and some advice – a real camino ángel moment.
Astorga is a smallish town 11000 people. It’s at the crossroads of the CF pilgrims’ route and the southern route known as the Roman Silver Road (Via del Plata or VDP).
It is a medieval, walled Old Town
Astorga has 4 main features – the first is the Episcopal Palace ( designed by Antonio Gaudí) and houses the Los Caminos Museum.
The second is the Gothic Astorga Cathedral – spot the candle for Lee.
The third feature of Astorga worth pursuing is some amazing street art by dadosountocero https://instagram.com/dadospuntocero?igshid=YmMyMTA2M2Y=
Astorga is also known for Chocolate – good quality chocolate is hard to beat and easy to eat