We have removed the Celtic Camino Guidebook from sale pending some clarifications. If you already have this guidebook you should download the supplement below and take it with you on your Camino.
On the way from Sigueiro to Santiago changes to the way mean that on no account can Hotel San Vincente be considered a stopping point; it is no longer on the way and the road crossing there should simply not be attempted.
Thanks to John Rafferty for his support with this.
SUPPLEMENT TO THE CELTIC CAMINO GUIDEBOOK
This supplement should be used in conjunction with the Guide to the Celtic Camino published by the Camino Society Ireland. It is essential that you read it before you set off as it describes important changes to the route and the way in which it is signposted. The route from A Coruña is historic and beautiful. Enjoy it!
John, June 2019
Reason for this Supplement
In 2008, when I first wrote the Guide to this route, 1425 pilgrims registered as having walked the Camino Inglés. In 2018 some 14,150 walked the route. A ten-fold increase. In 2017 the local authority in A Coruña started to promote the city as a starting point after it was confirmed that pilgrims could obtain the Compostela certificate if they walk at least 25 kms in their home country then walk to Santiago from there. More details of this and the Celtic Camino are contained in the main Guide.
Previously there were few signs or arrows to guide pilgrims on the route from A Coruña. However due to the increased numbers in recent years, and the anticipated surge in pilgrims in the next Holy Year in 2021, local authorities along the Camino Inglés have been changing the route and improving signage. In A Coruña in late 2018 new signs were installed. This supplement accurately describes the current position.
Who is responsible for Camino routes? A Disclaimer
At this point it may be helpful for you to know that there is no single organisation in charge of the Camino Routes in Spain. The Department of Heritage of the Regional Government for an area liaises with individual local councils to define the course of Camino routes. It is then the responsibility of these local authorities to mark and maintain the routes.
Neither the author of this Guide, nor the Camino Society Ireland, has any responsibility for the standard of signage, historical accuracy of the route or the personal safety of pilgrims.
Along the current Camino Inglés both from Ferrol and A Coruña, there are points where Camino signs direct pilgrims along the verge of roads where there is no pavement. We urge you to exercise caution, remembering that traffic may flow in a different direction from that in your home country.
Leaving A Coruña - this supplement and the main Guide
The walking directions in the main Guide state that pilgrims start at the main door of the church of Santiago and proceed down the Calle Santiago following the waymark tile on the wall of house number 15. The walking directions then chart the route out of the City of A Coruña, following the water line of the port on the left.
Now a new route has been defined by the local authority with new signs installed:
a combination of waymark tiles, on walls, and metallic waymarks, on poles or lamp posts.
This new route follows a line exactly parallel to what is described in the Guide.
However, given that there are now new signs for substantial parts of the way out
of the City, new walking notes are required. These follow.
There are two points early in this route where you are advised to pause and understand where you are going, rather than simply slavishly follow arrows.
The first of these is at the very start. Standing with your back to the church of Santiago, with an arrow on the wall to your right pointing ahead, you might think that is the way to go. It used to be, but it isn't now. Turn round and walk up round to the rear of the church where you will find the first granite marker. The distance given on this marker is 72,804 kms to Santiago. This is less than the 75 kms you are required to do if you have walked 25 kms in your own country. Don't be concerned. The Cathedral of Santiago accepts this as the starting point and, in fact, due to other minor changes along the way, you will walk 75 kms to Santiago.
The second point where you are advised to stop and understand where you are going ahead is at the top of the hill beyond the bus station, approximately 5 kms from the start. As you walk over the crest of the hill you will see a beautiful view of the estuary stretching out to your left. To the right is the large Alcampo hypermarket. What you are going to do is walk downhill and then, keeping Alcampo over to your right, proceed along the left hand side of the road through Portazgo, until you reach house number 35. At house 35 you turn Left, and the walking notes on p34 of the main Guide will then direct you - via Rúas Eduardo Blanco Amor, Jorge Gullién and Miramar - to the start of a glorious riverside walk of 4 kms, all the way to O Burgo. There are yellow arrows and granite markers, but this is a busy area and parked cars may obscure them. Keep your eyes peeled and follow the walking notes in the Guide and all will be well.
Supplementary Walking Notes - leaving A Coruña
The first granite marker (72,804 kms) is at a seating area behind the church of Santiago. Turn Left, passing through the Plaza del General Azcarraga, then Left again, down Calle de Damas. Veer Right at the Plazuela and Avenida de los Ángeles, down to the Plaza María Pita. Tourist Office to your right, here, at number 6 - providing Camino information and credenciales, at no charge. Leave the square by the arch directly opposite you, on Calle de Riego de Agua. Pass the Biblioteca Provincial and the Teatro Rosalía de Castro (left) and KSO, on Calle Real, till you come to the obelisk. Here, KSO, first on Cantón Grande, then along Cantón Pequeño.
At a fork-junction cross at the crossings, over to the Left, onto Calle Sánchez Bregua. Cross the road at the Plaza Ourense and KSO, between a kiosk (right) and the Puerto de Coruña (across the road, left). Cross Calle Menéndez y Pelayo and KSO, on Avenida de Linares Rivas. At a T-junction (with Calle Ramón de la Sagra) veer Left, to turn Right, where Linares Rivas becomes the Avenida Alcalde Alfonso Molina. Almost immediately, cross at the crossing, over to the left hand side of this main road, and turn Right. Immediately, follow the pavement round Left (i.e. do NOT go straight ahead alongside the main road), onto Avenida de Fernandez Latorre.
Cross over to the right hand side of this street, as it winds round right and down to the fountain at the Plaza de Cuatro Caminos. Cross at the junctions, with the fountain over to your left, and KSO. At the junction with Calle Castro Chané (right), cross at the crossings over to your Left, then turn Right, on Calle Santiago Rey Fernández Latorre. Cross over Calle de Ramón y Cajal and KSO, between the Corte Inglés (left) and the bus station (across the road, right). You will see Camino signs over on the bus station side, but keep to the left hand side of this street, the Calle Alcalde Pérez Ardá. Cross over Ronda de Outeiro and KSO.
At a roundabout with modern design work in the centre, veer Left, and go uphill, on Avenida de Monelos. As you cross Calle Rafael Dieste, you will see the church of Santa María de Oza to your left. The route is signed here by waymark tiles on walls and yellow arrows on lamp posts. On your way up, at another roundabout, veer Left again, and continue up on the Avenida de Monelos. The mojón here reads 68,939 kms - so approximately 4 kms from the church of Santiago.
Follow the road as it bends round Left, on the Carretera de Eirís. Pass the Colegio Internacional Eirís (left) and a Repsol filling station and the Residencial Santa Teresa Jornet (across the road, right). KSO downhill, on Avenida de Montserrat, passing the Centro Oncolóxico de Galicia (left).
The road comes down to a junction with main roads. Follow the arrows, veering slightly Right, onto the bridge over the motorway. Walk carefully, and single file, on a narrow hard shoulder to the left of the traffic, for some 700-800 metres. Pass the Alcampo hypermarket, a petrol station and the entrance sign for Portazgo (across the road, right). Keep your eyes peeled for the yellow arrow, low down on a concrete wall supporting a wire fence, taking you off to the Left, immediately after house number 35. From here, continue with the walking notes in the Guide, page 34ff.
Correction – Approaching Sarandones
Page 38, last paragraph: this should read “… coming out at a junction with a minor road. Turn Right. Pass downhill between houses and come out at the café/Bar Centro (which does not provide food) in Sarandones.”
Updates to the Guide
If you notice anything new or any changes send your updates to:
Routes change from time to time. Bars close and new ones open. New signs are put up and there can be roadworks. If you notice any changes to the route, help your fellow pilgrims and send the information to me.