Day 56


From Tapia to Lugo through Meira

Hostel Tapia, in the morning

The old wash place

And a gorgeous view behind the hostel!

Amazing, it’s a real radio!


I’m leaving, more or less on time, for Lugo.

But I realize that my bike again made a small noise (and I am quite tense, because of the story five days ago). I returned back, to not burst my tire in the mountain. Looking for a mechanic (who is there by chance) and he discovered that it was only the brake, badly positioned! Thanks to the friendly chap of the Taller Cereixera!

And there, you go up a lot.

Final step: Galicia.

Pumpkins for Halloween?

Snow in Galicia?

And finally Lugo…

and her charming Maria-Jose, who invited me two days, in her comfortable hostel. Thank you so much!

Entered the old fortified city of Lugo, to go eat something.

Good night’s rest, before starting the next day with work (from 9:30 to 00:30!). And the day after…


Day 55


From Aviles to Tapia passing by Luarca

bye to this pretty fantastic public hostel

Albergue of peregrinos Pedro Solis

Very good breakfast in the bakery, with a gift of “Mantecado”. Then, a manual to encourage this baker, whose smile fills the people, to get to his own bakery via a crowdfunding. Merci!

And some photos of the day

The House of the Pagan on the way to Santiago…

And I finally understood that this building is called “Horreo”, with on top the CAMARRANCHON, which allows you to store food, safeguarded from animals and… moisture! As in Zermatt. These are buildings protected by law!

The most beautiful village… in 1992.

I buy! Not for the walls.

And the famous Beach of Silence.

A tiny foal…

and his brother, teenager, listening to heavy metal.

Thank you Google maps. Here it goes again. But a little further, horrible rocky road with 18% of slope.

Luarca, where a journalist was waiting for me!

Then I have to cycle again another 50 kilometers; with a cold drizzle covering me all the way. I’m frozen.

I arrive, completely soaked, at the hostel of Tapia (since the one  from Ribadeo, further away, is being fumigated…) and there is only one bed!


Day 54


From Ribadesella to Avilés, through Nava

View of the day from my dorm. Not bad.

Overlooking the garden, with an old couple that is gardening, together.

Then I explained to the receptionists (finally arrived), but they began to panic, not believing what had happened. When I explained to them (very quietly) the story and this challenge, they finally calmed down. But it is pretty amazing. And though, they charged me this dirty dormitory and a breakfast that I couldn’t eat.

Taken a breakfast here, very good things.

Mixed weather.

And new mountains…

With their permission!

Almost a “Bleu Majorelle”

And a strange building, which reminded me of the wooden chalets of Zermatt.

And again lost by Google maps, which had sent me on the highway! The trip to this hostel was only 30 minutes away, it ended by a path with 15% slope, which lasted two hours.

Fortunately, at the top, this gentleman was there to guide me.

He said that with these gps, he sees families of prisoners often passing by, while the prison is in front!

I saw several people walking on the Camino who were still for an hour of walk, while there was only 45 minutes for the door of the hostel to close).

Finally arrived at the hostel at thirty minutes of closing…

I am invited by this very nice Hospitalero and I can work until midnight on his desk. Thank you very much!

Telling him that there were four people quite hurried to get at the hostel, he told me that I could exceptionally open the door to them, after 10 pm. And it was a joy to see again them after!


Day 53


From Santander to Ribadesella through Comillas

Started the day with Pili, the “Hospitalera” responsible for the hostel, who told me that she would tell all the hostels of the coastal camino (which she chairs) that I must be well treated! (did she do it? :-)))

Sunday prayers in the crypt of the Cathedral and then the pictures of it.

Then a few images of my daily route:

clothes from that period…

Very hilly, but beautiful.

Finally, my four thousandth kilometers…

I also have a right to a Saint.

And there, the rain…

See the various improvements to the roads…

Arrival in Asturias.

Lost with Google Maps…

A tradition in many villages, from Denmark to the Spain!

The hostel I had called 7 – 8 times since the beginning of the afternoon never responded. When I arrived at 9:15 pm, I thought that the building was closed! Fortunately, I saw a light. Then I knocked on the windows. A person went out. I asked why the reception (closed buy the time) never answered.

Once again Google, giving a phone number of the previous owners. But still, the new owners should have expedited quickly the phone number  change! What a story. I slept in a dormitory, with dirty sheets of the person who was there before, the room was a mess – but at least I had a roof, because it started to rain. I would explain this to the receptionists in the next morning.

I saw a lawyer on the beach, which was fishing with very sophisticated equipment. It was his last day of vacation, and he had to leave the next day with his children by car. Hi, colleague!


Day 51


From Markina-Xemein to Bilbao, via Guernika… and the Peace Museum.

In the early morning, the husband of the wife that had “invited me” the day before, is angry with me, aggressive, pushed me and wanted me to pay now.

He has even threatened to use its strength (to hit me) to receive ten euros. Sad story, but he didn’t care if I was invited by his wife. Himself had problems.

I threatened to call the police to calm him down and then I quickly paid. Other guests were aghast.

But the house was very pretty, shame for the owner’s behaviour, the pilgrims were fleeing. In 50 days, I had never lived that.

I went down to the village and took some time to evacuate this dark story of my head.

Normally, I had to take my break in Bilbao and arrive in Castro-Urdiales in the evening, but it was already noon and then I got lost (thank you Google Maps).

I went through Bolibar (from the name of the village of the ancestors of Simón Bolívar, but he was born in Caracas,…).   Great liberator of Colombia (hello to my Colombian friends of 20 years ago!),  Venezuela and Ecuador.

Then it was a very complicated road, very hilly and with rain!


I got the chance to know about Guernika, while initially I had bet on the Guggenheim Museum. Unlike the great museums where I was invited in this challenge for you to see them, this museum wouldn’t invite me – too bad, because it was an opportunity to show you one of the greatest European centers of modern and contemporary art. But it is especially the architecture that is beautiful.

On the other hand, what I could see in Guernika (thanks for the invitation!) is even more important in this challenge: the Peace Museum.

“The peacekeeping begins with the autosatisfaction of each individual” (Dalai Lama)

Guernika, in 1937, on the orders of the Spanish Government, had been completely razed,  by German aircraft bombing. Since then, we speak of “total war”. Absolutely scary.

Then, a picture of the “Tools” to bring conflicts, disputes, to a better understanding (special dedication for my mediators colleagues!).

The painting made by Picasso, oddly a command of the Spanish State in 1937, for the universal exhibition in Paris.

Views of Guernika

And after two hours of driving in the rain, I arrived in Bilbao, with this extraordinary museum/building, in the shape of a galeon!

The basque country has a very innovative architecture (photo of a subway station) by going to someone who offered me to stay this night – Couchsurfing (since a few days, difficult to be invited).

A large queue, for a restaurant where everyone would eat this strange and notorious sandwich (made of ham, and French dressing… but if they like it!).

Then one of the ideas of Cerebrum… for October 20, first world day for brain cancer research – a small shave in solidarity (for those who are 15-20 years, it’s very cool!).

And then, finally arrived to the flat of my host, Ana, Bolivian, after have mounted my bike, not really light, on 7 floors.

Adorably, Ana has stayed in the room of her roommate, to let me sleep with her sofa. Thank you!


Day 52


From Bilbao to Santander, passing through Laredo.

Goodbye to the couch of Ana, who was gone to do many things (her best friend wedding day!).

Yoghurts, unrefrigerated, who last apparently a year…

Meeting in the street Ana, by luck and joy. Thank you very much!

Early intervention of the basque police…

And, very luckily, I had felt a little noise on my bike… My tire had a strain and I could have had a serious accident in the mountains, because the tire could burst.

These fantastic saviors, which in addition have understood the challenge and have not asked to me pay. Merci!

Then a crane with zip line down…

Then architecture (sometimes they are really good).

Megacity for oil.

Again this wonderful coast, with the Sun.

A round panel that includes almost everything!

Break in Laredo (reminds a little bit the beaches of Rio de Janeiro, but I’ve never been there!).

And pedaling hard, because the end of the day approaches!

Tuning in Santander

and a neighbourhood party!

And my first bed at 21 h 40 in an ALBERGUE for pilgrims – you must sleep at 10 pm without discussion!


Day 50


From Hendaye in Markina-Xemein through San Sebastian (120 kms).

Goodbye lovely hotel

Spanish border blocked! Iron curtain!

It’s a good thing since this Union is here.

First Spanish people, very friendly.

The new fear: the rain and the mountain.

The Cathedral of San Sebastian.

And my “CREDENCIAL” finally.

A very touching Mary.

Very good guy, very good wine.

The playa

The basque mountains

To an old friend…

Between coastline and mountains…

We’re on the right path.

It’s night, and I left all warm clothes in France, before making this last leg in Spain.

The police has helped me find the hostel where I was supposed to sleep (unofficially I was invited).

But they made a mistake, they brought much higher (200 metres of ascent), and had to return all down! Google’s mistake. Got to the hostel at 22:30!


Day 28


Anka and his super delicious home-made red fruit jam.

and her cats to guard – goodbye!

The small lounge where I had the beard trimmed. Thank you!

images of a day

a dream home…

a Spanish couple (no, basque!) who promised to see me when I arrive in Spain (it’s in two days now)

There was no success find a roof in the town of Meppen – but luckily, a very friendly camping ground there greeted me! and tomorrow is another story…


Day 27


Second day in Bremen  with plans for an interview with a journalist. But as this has been planned for the afternoon, I will have to spend the night here again.

But there will be no second night in this hostel as it is full. And it’s going to be a big source of stress, until 22: 30.

Universum: beautiful Science Museum!

In the huge park, another couple were being photographed… best wishes!

There are really good live in Bremen.

The journalist…

I still haven’t heard from people I have contacted. Even a hostel for immigrants I know their courage, sleeping on the ground.

Then somebody suggested I see I immediately created a profile, and sent out invitations waited three hours…

And I met Anke!

made a delicious pie of beet and goat for the next day!

and to whom I offered my usual Toblerone! CouchSurfing, it might work and it feels good!


Day 26


Passing by the hostel in Bremen:

a St. Bernard without her necklace of schnapps

a flea market

very secure, even in small villages

a candidate quite known for the forthcoming legislative elections.

and finally, Bremen

I discovered newlyweds and their team of photographers

the Cathedral with a demonstration for peace in the world (in memory of the Hiroshima bomb)

the beautiful city hall

and went to pray in the chapel of Mary with extraordinary stained glass…

until they read after the fact what Manessier who drew them! and they will be classified to the heritage of humanity. one of my great joys.

the four singers

the Cathedral

an event for Europe

I have met Ms. Olga Truepel, very committed, German MEP on the health theme

and the hostel who greeted me