10 things to do in Sofia. Few expectations and a lot of surprises

Do You have few expectations about Sofia? Then it’s time to think about it again. Relaxing, quiet and full of interesting aspects, Sofia is a European capital of a pure Balkan flavour, amazing especially for the way in which different cultures and religions use to live together peacefully within the same city.

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The Bulgarian capital is in fact one of the cities where one can find an Orthodox church, a Christian church and a Mosque on the same road, placed in front of each other. Sofia can be visited easily. If you like to wake up early you can also do within a day. So, plan even a weekend to live quietly this city and above all discover its most hidden and interesting sides. Walking through the main streets starting from the Orthodox Church of Sveta Nedelya, head to the south of Vitosha to stroll on the shopping street up to the palace of culture and to the east on Bulevard Tsar Osvoboditel to find the most important historic buildings up to the Orthodox Alexander Nevsky Cathedral. Do not limit yourself to a classic touristic tour, because Sofia is a city that should be experienced in its most hidden alleys which preserve the energy of the third oldest city in Europe. We took advantage of a free food tour, organized by non-profit association of enterprising guys of Sofia, to discover a part of the city apart of the main streets, as well as to taste the local dishes and learn about many curiosities about Sofia and Bulgarian culture. It would be perfect if those tours would be organized in every city in the world to give the opportunity to every kind of tourist to know the city with the eyes of its citizens. In fact, thanks to this tour we get to know a really fascinating part of Sofia, on the East of Vitosha street where one can feel the true essence of the city outside the tourist chaos, strolling on the market of second hand books and the streets rich of typical restaurants and shops of local artists. It is worth spending a couple of hours here and try the local street food in the road that heads to the Orthodox church of Veti Sedmochislenitsi. History, legends, culture, street performers and food make Sofia one of the most beautiful cities one can visit. Set aside a weekend for your visit, as after every trip you will come back enriched.

Interesting facts

  • Yogurt: Bulgarians are proud to have invented (by accident) yogurt. It is said that the proto-Bulgarians, a nomadic population who moved from Asia to Bulgaria had the habit of transporting milk within lamb skin pouches tied on the backs of their donkeys or horses. Because of the animal’s body temperature, the micro-flora of the bags and the movement of the animals during long journeys, the milk became acid but still tasty and nutritious. This containing the Lactobacillus Bulgaricus to whom the Bulgarians attribute their longevity (Bulgaria does have the highest percentage of people older than 100). Now I feel like I would like some yogurt !!
  • The Lactobacillus Bulgaricus makes the Bulgarian yoghurt very healthy, lowers cholesterol, fights cancer and helps the bowel to work better.
  • The Bulgarians say they are physically very strong (Spartacus was born in Thrace, today’s Bulgaria) this because they eat lots of garlic, and we can confirm it…
  • Sofia is the third oldest city in Europe after Rome and Athens

10 Things to do in Sofia

  1. Food Tour of Sofia
  2. Hidden poetries of Sofia: around the city there are 28 poems written by authors from different European countries and drawn on the facades of several buildings. They create a good opportunity to visit the hidden corners of the city.
  3. Free Sofia Tour. These guys offer free tours of Sofia, including a tour full of stories and facts about the city, an evening pub crawl and comunist tour.
  4. Walking on Vitosha, the shopping street, and stop to have a coffee in one of the bars on the street. Then move on to the districts East of Vitosha and get lost on the streets, it’s really worth.
  5. Church of San Giorgio.
  6. Serdika Archaeological Site
  7. Alexander Nevsky Cathedral. Entrance is free, but you have to pay a fee to take pictures inside the church.
  8. Historical Museum of Sofia, very interesting because it is located in an ancient SPA, of which there are still hot spring water fountains. We have seen people drinking from these fountains and we also tested the water…we were not hurt 🙂
  9. Church of Sveti Sedmochislenisti: look around the church to find an electrical cabinet covered by a graffiti which shows on the front two Orthodox priests hugging and on the back the same priests palpating their asses. There are many of these electrical cabinets throughout the city, they are called Transformers and were originally designed to give a new and more colorful aspect to the city.
  10. Antique market: in the vicinity of the Alexander Nevsky Cathedral you can find everything from holy pictures to accessories of the Nazi period which may shock your sensibility.

What to eat

It ‘obvious to find garlic in the Bulgarian cuisine, except in desserts… Yogurt is present everywhere, both as a beverage and as contouring or sauce to be associated with meat and vegetables. The influence of Ottoman cuisine is still present in many spicy dishes. Cheese and meat of goat and pork are present on all menus.

To drink: try the Bulgarian red wine, the one which Roman Empire legionaries used to drink . Close your meal with a glass of iced rakie.

  1. Tarator: is a traditional summer soup, served cold and made by yogurt, salt, cucumber, dill and nuts.
  2. Shopska Salata: a salad of tomato, cucumber and grated cheese that resembles the colors of the Bulgarian flag, white, green and red. This is the national dish par excellence.
  3. Banitsa: Typical pastry looking salty cake, filled with cheese (the most typical), or apple, pumpkin, spinach, onion. Bulgarians use to eat it during breakfast. It will surely give you an energy boost throughout the day. It also represents the traditional New Year dish and during its preparation a coin is places inside the dough before putting it in the oven. Who will take the piece of banitsa with the coin will have a lucky year.
  4. Meshana Skara: mixed meat grill
  5. Kavarma: stew of pork and vegetables
  6. Buhtichki: or Bulgarian donut, served with powdered sugar, caramel or chocolate, they are easily found in markets.

Where to eat

  • Hadjidraganov’s cellars: the best traditional restaurant we tried in Sofia, with furniture built by craftsmen from Bulgarian villages. It has some good red wines and a wide variety of meat dishes and vegetables. Also try the sugared typical wine. We were surprised to see a wooden cart at the entrance much like a Sicilian cart (does it means that Sicily and Bulgaria have something in common?) (Address: Ul. “Hristo Belchev” 18, 1000 Sofia)
  • Supa Star: small restaurant with a wide selection of soups in Sofia (Address: ul. “Tsar Shishman”, 1000 Sofia)
  • Sun and Moon: small vegetarian restaurant housed in an old bakery, only furnished with second-hand furniture. The bread is homemade and is seasoned with exquisite spicy sauces. Get used to the strong garlic taste. (Address: Ul. “William Gladstone” 18-Б, 1000 Sofia)
  • Farmer’s: Bulgarian fast food chain, a good alternative to the various American chains, they serve organic products from regional farms. (Address: Ul. “General Yosif V. Gourko” 38-Б, 1000 Sofia)

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Hamburg – Miniatur Wunderland

Visiting in Hamburg and the same time visiting the world. Yes, all of this is possible at the Miniatur Wunderland in Hamburg, the largest model railway in the world. Founded in 2006 by a couple of railway model amateurs, the extension of the railway has reached in 2016 15,400km. But it is not only about the length, it is about the detail of the environments and landscape through which the railway runs. Hamburg, Las Vegas, Switzerland, Scandinavia, the last arrived Italy and the amazing airport model which is a real airport only of a smaller size, with the same timetable of Hamburg airport. We had fun searching the through the details of the represented cities and landscapes, people kissing, nude models, scuba cows and so on. Undoubtedly one of the things you can’t miss if you visit Hamburg, and one one the things that should be on everyone’s to do list.  

Hamburg – Street Food Festival

Black Wasabi Burger

We start our discovery tour of Hamburg from his “Tor zur Welt”, the gate to the world, his harbour.We are at the Cruise Center of Altona at the Street food festival took place, close to an amazing building shaped in the form of a big cruise boat. Among the famous wurst of Germany, the scandinavian smoked salmon, nachos from latin america, spicy food from brasil, asia and california skewers look but an Explosion of taste at the first bite. The winner for us in this nice small street food festival in the Hansestadt. 

Cruise Center Hamburg

Camino de Santiago – Day 16 from Santiago to Muxía and Fisterra

Il viaggio continua, oltre Santiago, le mete sono Muxía e Finisterre. La prima per la sua meravigliosa chiesa de la Virgen de Barca costruita direttamente sulla scogliera di fronte al mare, probabilmente posta sul luogo originario del culto ancestrale delle pietre. È uno spettacolo godersi l’infrangersi delle onde sugli scogli a pochi metri dalla facciata della chiesa, tra i massi di pietra conosciuti come rocking delle pietre il cui equilibrio è cosi preciso che basta toccarle per farle oscillare. È il posto perfetto per chi è appassionato di surf e kitesurf e per chi ama trovate scorci indimenticabili da fotografare. A metà giornata ci fermiamo a pranzo al ristorante o de Lolo, la cui mariscata, un piatto misto di pesce e frutti di mare, è letteralmente un miracolo per le papille gustative, cozze in salmoriglio, capesante, datteri di mare, vongole e aragosta. La pausa perfetta per continuare il nostro viaggio da Muxia a Fisterra, il luogo che nel medioevo si pensasse essere la fine del mondo occidentale (Fisterra: Fin da terra). Fisterra è una penisola che si allunga verso occidente alla fine della quale si trova il famoso faro e una bella terrazza naturale da cui godersi il tramonto del sole insieme a tanti pellegrini e turisti che armati di birre e snack attendono lo sparire del sole all’orizzonte. Uno spettacolo della natura in questa giornata calda e limpida di fine Settembre. Prima di arrivare al faro decidiamo di posteggiare e percorrere gli utlimi 5km a piedi, oltrepassando la pietra miliare che indica il mitico km 0,00 del cammino. Il raggiungimento di un traguardo dopo 16 giorni di avventura ed esperienze indimenticabili insieme ad altre persone diventate nostre amiche. 16 giorni di semplicitá, natura e… Vita


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The journey continues over Santiago, to Muxía and Finisterre. The first for its wonderful church of La Virgen de Barca built on the cliff in front of the sea, probably located on a ancient site of the ancestral worship of stones. It’s a sight to enjoy the waves crashing on the rocks a few meters from the facade of the church, among the enchanted boulders known as rocking stones, are large stones that are so finely balanced that the application of just a small force causes them to rock. It’s the perfect place for those who love surfing and kite surfing and for those who love to photograph unforgettable views. At midday we stopped for lunch at the restaurant O de Lolo, whose mariscata is literally a miracle for the taste buds, in vineagre mussels, scallops, date mussels, clams and lobster; the perfect break to continue our journey from Muxia to Fisterra, place that in the Middle Ages was thought to be the end of Western world (Fisterra: fin da terra) Fisterra is a peninsula that stretches out to the west at the end of which lies the famous lighthouse and a beautiful natural terrace from which to enjoy the sunset along with many pilgrims and tourists armed with beers and snacks awaiting the vanishing of the sun on the horizon. A show of the nature in this hot and clear day of end of September. Before arriving at the lighthouse we decided to park and walk the last few 5km walk, encountering the milestone of 0.00 km of the camino de Santiago. The achievement of a target after 16 days of adventure and unforgettable experiences with other people and friends. 16 days of simplicity, nature and …Life

Camino de Santiago – Day 15, one day in Santiago de Compostela

Santiago de Compostela, una città dalla bellezza inaspettata. La cattedrale di Santiago coincide con la fine del cammino dei pellegrini nella piazza dell’Obradoiro di fronte alla facciata barocca della cattedrale. Al nostro arrivo la facciata era semicoperta da impalcature a causa dei lavori di restauro in corso, ma ció non ha tolto nulla alla belezza della chiesa e all’emozione che ci ha travolti una volta arrivati. La facciata è cosi ricca di dettagli e simboli da poter perdersi per ore ad osservarla, come fanno i pellegrini piu stanchi distesi a terra sulla piazza. Una curiosità degna di nota è che questa facciata costruita nel 1700 protegge la facciata medievale danneggiata dalle intemperie nel corso degli anni. Sul lato sinistro della piazza, guardando alla cattedrale, è l’Hotel del los reis catholicos un antico parador medievale con una stupenda facciata. La città è molto ricca di edifici che risalgono all’inizio dell’anno mille. Ogni giorno alle 12:00 e alle 19:30 si svolge la messa e la benedizione del pellegrino, quando si è fortunati si puó anche assistere alla benedizione col botafumeiro l’incensiera piu grande al mondo che viene fatta oscillare come un pendolo sulle teste dei fedeli. Anticamente questo serviva a purificare l’aria della cattedrale con l’ incenso a causa della grande quantitá di pellegrini che da giorni camminavano senza aver possibilità di lavarsi. Oggi è diventata una della attrazioni turistiche di Santiago, che si può ammirare nella messa di tutti i venerdi alle 19:30 oppure a richiesta facendo una donazione di 300euro alla cattedrale. Anche questo è diventato un commercio turistico. Tappa obbligata er i pellegrini è quella all’ufficio di accoglienza ai pellegrini per ottenere la compostela, il documento che attesta che il pellegrino ha effettuato il cammino, per ottenerla bisogna percorrere a piedi almeno gli ultimi 100km ( da Sarria) o 200km in bici. Noi abbiamo fatto due ore e mezza di coda per ottenere l’attestato. Oltre alla cattedrale, le vie del centro storico di Santiago sono tutte da scoprire, tra negozietti, chiese antiche, botteghe di artigiani e ristoranti tipici.​ Prendete un giorno intero per visitare la città, ne vale la pena.

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Santiago de Compostela, a city of unexpected beauty. The Cathedral of Santiago is the end of the journey of the pilgrims at the plaza de Obradoiro in front of the baroque facade of the cathedral. Upon our arrival the facade was partly covered in scaffolding because of restoration work in progress, but this has not removed any of the emotion that has overwhelmed us as we arrived. The facade is a wealth of details and symbols that one can get lost for hours to observe it, as do the more tired pilgrims lying on the ground on the square. A curiosity worth of note is that this facade built in 1700 protects the medieval facade damaged by the weather over the years. On the left side of the square, looking at the cathedral, is the Hotel del los reis Catholicos a medieval parador with a stunning facade. The city is very rich in buildings that date back to the year one thousand.

Every day at 12:00 and at 19:30 there is the Mass and blessing of the pilgrims, when you are lucky you can also witness the Benediction of the botafumeiro the largest incense pot in the world that is swung like a pendulum over the heads of the pilgrims. In ancient times this was used to purify the air of the cathedral with strong incense because of the large amount of pilgrims who walked for days without washing facilities. Today it has become a tourist attractions of Santiago, which can be seen in the Mass every Friday at 19:30 or at request by making a donation of 300euro to the cathedral. Even this has become a touristy business. A obliged stop for the pilgrims is at the welcome office of the pilgrims to get the compostela, the document that certifies that the pilgrim has walked the way, to get it you need to walk at least the last 100km (from Sarria) or to cycle at least 200km. We did two and a half hour queue to get the certificate. In addition to the cathedral, the streets of the historic center of Santiago are to be discovered, including shops, ancient churches, artisan shops and restaurants. Take a whole day to do it, it is really worth the time.

Camino de Santiago – Day 14, ultimate day from O Pedrouzo to Santiago de Compostela

13 giorni di cammino senza sosta, 24km al giorno completati oggi di fronte alla maestosa facciata della cattedrale di Santiago, un’ emozione indiescrivibile arrivati nella piazza della cattedrale, senza parole, soltanto tante emozioni che possono essere esternate in lacrime di gioia, di felicitá e fierezza di aver raggiunto un traguardo che inizialmente sembrava impossibile. 310km di cammino da Leon a Santiago, tra pianure sotto il sole cocente, salite interminabili tra i boschi delle montagne di Leon per raggiungere O Cebreiro, paesaggi incontaminati abbracciati dalla nebbia mattutina e boschi incantati. Le mucche, le galline, i cavalli, la puzza di sterco che dopo un po di giorni non è piu puzza ma profumo di natura vera. La brina del mattino, il vento che ti sbatte in faccia, la pioggia che ti rende difficile il cammino, lo zaino che diventa sempre piu pesante kilometro dopo kimolmetro, le meravigliose persone che ci hanno accolto, consigliato, che ci hanno accompagnato che hanno condiviso con noi questo viaggio-esperienza unico al mondo. La natura, l’ anima che abbiamo riscoperto, la bellezza di ció che ci circonda, il cibo tipico e il vino di casa, l’architettura medievale, le case rurali, le chiesette di campagna e le stalle. I sentieri, i ruscelli, i fiumi, le montagne , valli e precipizi, la menta selvatica il rosmarino e i fiori di mille colori. I sentieri di terra battuta, di pietra, i percorsi lungo l’asfalto, tra i campi e le pitaggioni di mais. 310km di poesia, 310km che purtroppo sono finiti anche se non ci dispiace sapere di non dovere camminare ancora per ore e di non doversi svegliare prima dell’ alba domani mattina. 310km di vita, di riflessioni, di leggerezza, di risate felici, di sole e di luce di vita che speriamo porti novità positive una volta tornati a casa, nella realtà di tutti i giorni. Il cammino di Santiago è l’Esperienza della vita con la E maiuscola. Preparate lo zaino e partite ovunque voi siate…Y ahora fiesta 🙂


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A 13-day walk without stops, 24km a day completed today in front of the majestic facade of the cathedral of Santiago the Compostela, an unbelievable emotion once arrived in the cathedral square; no words to describe it, just a lot of emotions that can be expressed in tears of joy, of happiness and pride in having reached a goal that seemed impossible initially. 310km walk from Leon to Santiago, between plains under the scorching sun, endless climbs through forests on the mountains of Leon to reach O Cebreiro, dream landscapes embraced by the morning fog and enchanted forests along the way. Cows, hens, horses, donkeys and  dung stench whose smell after some days is no longer an issue, though the scent of nature. The frost in the morning, the wind that slaps you in the face, the rain that makes walking even more difficult, the backpack that becomes heavier kilometer after kilometer, the wonderful people who welcomed us, recommended us, who accompanied us who shared with us this unique experience. The nature, the soul that we rediscovered, the beauty that surrounds us, the typical food and the house wine, the medieval architecture, the rural homes, country churches and stables. The trails, streams, rivers, mountains, valleys and precipices, wild mint and rosemary, the flowers in many colors. The dirt paths, stone paths along the asphalt, between the fields and the green and yellow corn fields. 310km of poetry, which, unfortunately, we regret are over although we are pleased to know not to have to walk for hours and not having to wake up before dawn tomorrow morning. 310km of life, of reflections, of lightness, of happy laughter, sunshine and light of life that we hope will bring positive changes once back home, in every day life. The Camino de Santiago is the experience of life. Prepare your backpack wherever you are and go … Y ahora fiesta 🙂

Camino de Santiago – Day 13 from Arzúa to O Pedrouzo

Penultima tappa da 20km quasi volando, non sentiamo neanche la strada sotto i piedi passando per boschi di eucalipto e campi di girasole. Non si sentino piú dolori e fatica, e la mente sembra perdersi tra i pensieri e l’esperienza degli ultimi giorni. Santiago si avvicina ed è solo a 20 km di distanza da noi. Vorremmo che il viaggi contnuasse ancr per diverse tappe, ma nello stesso tempo non stiamo nella pelle per provare l’effetto che ci farà arrivare a Santiago. Abbiamo passato un’altra bella serata con gli amici del cammino, questi bei momenti saranno tra quelli che ci rimarranno nel cuore.


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Penultimate stage of 20km as we are flying, not even feeling the road beneath our feet through eucalyptus forests and sunflower fields. The pain is not there anymore and the mind is like lost through the thoughts and the experiences of the last days. Santiago approaches and is only 20 km away from us. We would like the travel further for several stages, but at the same time we are not in the skin to feel the effect as we will get to Santiago. We spent another wonderful evening with friends of the camino, these good times will remain in our heart.

Camino de Santiago – Day 12 from Melide to Arzúa

Tappa #12 da Melide a Arzua, una delle tappe più corte del cammino, con brevi salite e paesini a ogni 4 km di distanza. Questa zona, soprattutto attorno ad Arzúa detiene il record per numero di mucche pro capita in tutta la Spagna, cosa che possiamo confermare visto il numero di mucche e agnellini che abbiamo incontrato oggi durante il nostro cammino. Anche il numero di cani è abbastanza alto, fortunatamente nessuno di loro è aggressivo; si avvicinano per curiositá, anche perchè nel nostro gruppo cammina un cucciolo di 7 mesi, senza aver creato mai problemi. Alcuni di questo cani sono veramente grandi, per poter tenere a bada le grandi mucche di queste zone. Arrivati ad Arzúa paesino molto piccolo, con più ostelli che abitazioni, ci fermiamo a pranzare al ristorante Casa Chelo, il cui menù ci ha veramente incantanto sia per qualità che quantità, tutto preparato in casa da una signora che sembra essere la nonna della famiglia: croquette miste; tostada con fois, cipolla e mela; tostada di noci e bacon, stufato di stinco di maiale con patate, cinghiale con salsa di vino, patè di mela e purè e, per chiudere, una tarta di queso al forno. Insomma, gli ultimi due giorni sono stati all’insegna delle scoperte culinarie della Galizia, che ci hanno veramente sbalordito.


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Stage # 12 of the camino from Melide to Arzúa, one of the shortest stages of the journey, with short climbs and villages in every 4 km. This area, especially around Arzúa holds the record for number of cows per capita in the whole Spain, which we can confirm seeing the number of cows and lambs that we met today during our journey. Also the number of dogs is high enough, but fortunately none of them is aggressive, they use to come closer for curiosity, also because in our group walks with us a 7-month-old puppy, but never made problems during our walk. Some of the dogs are really big to be able to hold off the big cows in these areas. Once in Arzúa, very small town, with more hostels than houses, we stop for lunch at the restaurant Casa Chelo, whose menu has really enchanted us both  for quality and quantity, everything homemade by a lady who I would say to be the grandmother of the family: croquetas Mistas; tostada with liver fois, onion and apple;toastada with chestnut and bacon; stewed pork shank with potatoes; wild boar with wine sauce, smashed apple and purè and, to close the meal, a tarta of queso baked. In short, the last two days were dedicated to the culinary treasures of Galicia, we were really stunned by the results.

Camino de Santiago – Day 11 from Palas del Rei to Melide

Stage #11 del camino. Abbiamo deciso di fare una tappa corta per riposare le gambe e approfittarne di una visita piú lunga nel paesino di Melide, famoso per il pulpo alla Gallega. Il tragitto di 15km è abbastanza facile con continue salite e discese attraversando boschi che sembrano incantati, dentro l’atmosfera mistica creata dalla nebbia che ci accompagna nelle mattine degli ultimi giorni. Da Sarria in poi abbiamo incontrato molti altri pellegrini ed è molto raro rimanere soli sul cammino senza un altro pellegrino a vista a meno di 20 metri. Chi ha iniziato a Sarria a soli 100km da Santiago si riconosce per gli zainetti piccoli, l’assenza di abbronzatura a livello dei calzoncini come per chi ha camminato sotto il sole per giorni e giorni e la freschezza muscolare di chi ha appena iniziato ed è pieno di energia. Vista la grande quantità di pellegrini, qiest’ultimo tratto diventa piú turistico, con negozietti e bancarelle molto piu presenti lungo il cammino e i prezzi degli ostelli e Albergues che aumentano di kilometro in kilometro. Abbiamo ricevuto un timbro molto speciale a circa 55km da santiago nel posto in cui anno fabsi trovava il cosiddetto bosco del pellegrino. Il timbro consiste in un sigillo di piombo a cui è attaccata una chiavetta e le donazioni andranno alla ricerca per gli invalidi.

Punto forte di questa tappa sono sicuramente le soste culinarie a Melide: per pranzo ci siamo fermati da Casa Alongo, l’unico posto in cui si puó mangiare un buonissimo hamburger di polipo, oltre agli altri piatti tradizionali assolutamente preparati in casa dalla cuoca moglie del proprietario che si intrattiene ogni tanto tra i clienti. Ci ha anche proposto di insegnarle a cucinare il ragú :). Dopo una siesta rigenerante facciamo un breve giro del paese prima di andare a cena alla Pulperia Ezequiel, in cui mangiamo il Pulpo alla Gallega e i Pimientos de Padron, il tutto accompagnato da vino bianco Ribeiro e un vino rosso della casa. Ogni giorno vengono cucinati più di 300kg di Pulpo. Per 12,5Euro ci siamo riempiti per bene. Le condizioni metereologiche vanno peggiorando in questo inizio di autunno, fuori comincia a piovere e domani la pioggia potrebbe rendere la tappa per Arzuá molto dura. Sicuramente il cibo originale di questa tappa ha alimentato la nostra motivazione per gli ultimi tre giorni di cammino.


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Stage # 11 of the camino. We decided to make a short stage today to recover our legs and take advantage of a more extended visit in the village of Melide, famous for the Pulpo a la Gallega to. The journey of 15km is pretty easy with continuous climbs and descents through enchanted forests into the mystical atmosphere created by the fog that accompanies us already in the morning of the last days. From Sarria on we encountered many other pilgrims and being very rare to be alone on the path without pilgrims at less than 20 meters walking distance. Who started in Sarria, only 100km from Santiago, can be recognized for the small backpacks, the absence of suntans under the shorts as for those who have walked in the sun for days and the muscle freshness of those who has just started and is full of energy. Given the great number of pilgrims, these last stages suddenly become more touristy, with shops and stalls much more present on the road and prices of hostels and Albergues that increase kilometer by kilometer. We received a very special stamp at around 55km from Santiago in the place where many years ago was the so-called pilgrim forest. The stamp consists of a lead seal to which is attached a small key. The donations for this seal will go to a community of disabled.

The highlights of this stage are definitely the culinary stops in Melide: for lunch we stopped by Casa Alongo, the only place on the way where you can eat a delicious octopus burger, as well as other traditional dishes absolutely home made by the wife of the owner who likes to entertan occasionally her customers “la mejor comida del camino”. She also proposed us to teach her how to cook ragout :). After a refreshing siesta we took a brief tour of the town center before going for dinner at Pulperia Ezequiel, to eat Pulpo a la Gallega and the Pimientos del Padron, all accompanied by white wine Ribeiro and a red house wine. Everyday they cook more than 300kg of Pulpo. For 12,5Euro we filled our bellies for good. The weather conditions are getting worse as we are in the beginning of autumn, it starts to rain and tomorrow rain could make the stage to Arzua very tough. Surely the original food of this stage has fueled our motivation for the last three days of walking.

Camino de Santiago – Day 10 from Portomarin to Palas del Rei

Giorno #10 sul camino, 24km da Portomarin a Palas del Rei. La giornata è molto nebbiosa, la nebbia ci accompagna per tutta la mattinata, fino alle 13:00 rendendo il cammino più difficile è monotono non potendo vedere il paesaggio sicuramente bellissimo come negli ultimi giorni. L’atmosfera degli ultimi due giorni è molto mistica a causa della nebbia, la sensazione di solitudine e l’essere soli con se stessi a meditare è ormai un’azione automatica. Il sole finalmente spazza via la nebbia per ora di pranzo, proprio quando ci fermiamo a 9km dalla fine della tappa presso un ristorante vicino a Gùntin dove veniamo serviti da una cameriera con un modo molto strano di attirare l’attenzione gridando il numero degli ordini con un tono di voce molto acuto. Penso che sia diventata l’attrazione principale dei pellegrini su questa tappa del cammino. Mangiamo un buonissimo bocadillo de jamon e una tarta de queso che ci danno la carica per continuare gli ultimi 9 km fino a palas del rei. Il paese non ha molto da offrirci in termini di attrazioni turistiche, quindi decidiamo di preparare una cena fai da te tra amici in ostello, in in atmosfera molto familiare.

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Day # 10 on the camino, 24km from Portomarin to Palas del Rei. The Day is very misty, fog accompanies us throughout the morning, until 13:00 making the journey more difficult and monotonous since we can not see the scenery around us. The atmosphere is very mystical, it feels like be alone having only the possibility to meditate while walking, having become now an automatic action. The sun finally brings the light in our journey as we stop for lunch at 9km away from the end of the stage at a restaurant in the area of Guntín. We are served by a waitress with a very strange way of calling orders shouting the table number with a very acute voice tone. She for sure has become the attraction of the pelegrinos. We eat a delicious bocadillo de jamon and a tarta de queso that gives us the charge to continue the last 9 km up to palas del rei. The town does not have much to offer in terms of tourist attractions, so we decided to prepare a home made meal among friends in the hostel, enhancing our familiar atmosphere.