Venture from Porto to Spain on this day trip to Santiago de Compostela and the sacred pilgrimage route, St James Way. For centuries pilgrims have made their way along this historic path and on this tour you can glean a part of their experience with a knowledgeable guide. Visit the sacred sites of Santiago de Compostela, like the city’s famous cathedral, as well as the UNESCO World-Heritage-listed Old Town. On your way back to Porto, stop at the charming Valença do Minho, dominated with a fortress of two towers and a double great wall projected in the Vouban style, in Portugal.
Day trip from Porto to Santiago de Compostela, Spain, and Valença do Minho Day, Portugal
Visit the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela, where the pilgrim route St James Way ends
See Compostela’s historic Old Town, a UNESCO World Heritage Site
Enjoy free time in Santiago de Compostela to have lunch and explore more at your own leisure
Visit Valença do Minho city center and see its fortress
Your journey to Santiago de Compostela begins with by meeting your expert guide and driver in central Porto. From there, enjoy a leisurely and scenic drive by air-conditioned coach through northern Portugal’s bucolic countryside, then cross the border to northwest Spain. Follow in the footsteps of thousands of pilgrims on St James Way, one of the most famous pilgrimage routes in the world. Holy seekers have been traversing this path since the early Middle Ages, and the tradition continues on today. At the end of your walk along the trail, your reward is confronting the Gothic, housing the remains of the apostle St James. Listen to your guide illuminate this holy site with its history. Then, explore the cathedral, admiring its majestic interior, stately bell towers, golden altar and Romanesque sculptures. Next, refuel with an authentic local lunch consisting of octopus or seafood in Santiago (own expense), then head to Santiago's UNESCO World-Heritage-listed old town district. When you’ve seen enough, hop back in your air-conditioned coach and begin your journey back to Porto. But first, stop at Valença do Minho, an historical village in the north of Portugal, located on the border between Portugal and Spain. Also known by its "Caminhos de Santiago" Valença do Minho is dominated with a fortress of two towers and a double great wall projected in the Vouban Style. An Engineer and an military architect from the XVII e XVIII centuries. Take time to explore this great city with its historical essence before returning to Porto, where your day trip concludes.
It was a tour in a small group (7 people + our guide) and I really enjoyed it! Ricardo was very knowledgeable in regard to everything in Portugal and very passionate about his country. I learned a lot and just had a great time!
I really appreciated this tour and our tour guide. There were 7 adults and a child in our van, we were comfortable. Our guide was very knowledgeable and courteous. We were picked up promptly at our hotel and travel was smooth.
This tour was on a Sunday and there were a lot of people. Pilgrims are given priority to enter the church. It was very challenging to get in the church. We were advised to wait until the mass was over which would mean after lunch. We chose to skip the rest of the food planned for our meal so we could go inside the church. One of the guests chose to line up and was able to successfully enter the church and touch Sr. Santiago but arrived in the middle of the meal. This is an option but inform your tour guide that you are foregoing the meal to hear mass instead. I wish we have more time in the area but of course we have to consider travel time.
All in all, a good tour to reach this special place in a day.
Excellent trip with very knowledgeable guide. The pilgrims service is very moving. Lunch was excellent. It just needed to have been made clear that we had time after lunch for a walk round santiago. I left, and regret, the service early not realizing that.
This tour was arranged in a small group of 8 people in a van that drove by our tour guide, Ricardo. He explained to us some geographical facts about the cities that we saw along the journey, and gave us a clear understanding about Santiago de Compostela pilgrimage. He's very cautious about safety and constantly reminded us to wear seat belt plus the music selections in his van's playlist was another plus point. Kudos to Ricardo!
When I arrived at the pick up point, I was informed by the tour guide that I was the only person.So it was just like a private tour, only cheaper. And that's great but my tour guide is also a very affable and easy-going kind of fella.
It was raining on and off the whole day, but luckily I managed to take pictures in between. It wasn't really a good day in Santiago DC as the rain just wouldn't let up when we got there. But Francisco my guide was great to be with and his taste in music for someone as young as he, is quite impressive. The Tapas lunch was superb and they are all yummy. The table wine was not bad either. So in spite of the rain it was a great trip.
This was a very worthwhile day trip. It was a small van with 8 people plus the driver so a good size, with delivery in 2 languages. There was a short orientation of Santiago de Compostela, followed by free time to visit the cathedral and/or wander the streets of the old town. We then met for a traditional lunch in a small restaurant - plentiful food, a variety of dishes, and staff eager to provide additional food for people who wished something different from what we ate. On the return trip we drove through Valenca do Minho, a fortified city on the Spain/Portugal border, and had time to wander around the city walls and through the streets before returning to Porto.
Overall good as Pedro was very knowledgeable about the towns and places we visited but tour itself seemed a bit haphazard as the star of the tour was essentially Santiago de Compostela which he didnt or was not allowed to guide us around. Seems a bit disjointed considering how far wed travelled from Porto only to then be dumped in the town with nothing but a few scribbles on a map. Pedro did his best but he was simply too hampered by the punishing schedule and inability to actually do any guidance.