Friday, May 27, 2016

Villaviciosa (el Camino del Norte)

Camping at Sauces la Playa ( willow tree Beach) was very peaceful.

 The German duo had decided to take a zero as their legs and feet were injured from all the road hiking. About thirty minutes into the hike we stopped at a local Spaniard's house for coffee with a group of other hikers. It was a great authentic experience to enjoy a morning joe at a native person's home.

 Many of the homes in Asturias have grain storage houses adjacent to their homes called a hórreo,  built in wood or stone, raised from the ground by pillars to avoid the access of rodents. Ventilation is facilitated by the slits in its walls. 

Another home in the village must have belonged to an artist as many of the walls had beautiful murals painted on them.

Spectacular ocean views and cliff hugging off-road trails were the order of the morning.

After a lunch overlooking a broad beach we experienced many, many mind numbing paved miles inland again, through villages that barely seemed alive. We did come through one town however and were surprised to find another open church, only the second so far along the entire trail.

I am puzzled and surprised at the number of seemingly abandoned houses and even newer looking housing developments which are all shuttered up and obviously not lived in by the hundreds. It may be a sign of an economic downturn in the region. A boom followed by a bust coupled with the presence of empty seasonal vacation homes.
An enjoyable aspect of the trail is the abundance of flowers, including wild daisies, lilies and roses.

At about 5:30 in the afternoon we came across a full Albergue and there were the Austrians! Sitting around a big table outside were also many others we had met. 

They all said hello and waved Shaka signs at us but we hiked on arriving in Villaviciosa later that evening and found a private room at Cafe del Sol, a dive of a place, which is also a hostel but  very clean, only 20 Euros in total. We checked the corners of the beds for bedbugs before we accepted the room.
From this city you can continue along the Camino Del Norte or branch off to the Camino Primitivo. We've decided to stay on the Del Norte where we'll send you more posts from "the way".

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