Galicia Grand Tour

This itinerary includes a full circuit through Galicia’s 10 unique sites as well as others that we discover along the way. This is a journey to be charmed by the magic of Galicia’s sanctuaries, its wild coast, its hill forts (castros), monasteries and castles, as well as the breathtaking beauty of its beaches and mountains. No doubt it is a unique journey through Galicia, with the opportunity to taste its genuine flavours accompanied by excellent wines.
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Full program

  • Day 1

    Just like the pilgrims do, we enter Galicia through O Cebreiro, a singular village in the high mountains of O Courel, which is popular because of its pallozas, pre-Roman buildings with straw roofs, and because it is a place where pilgrims pass through and stop to rest. Here you are joined by our guide who will be accompanying you throughout your entire journey. We visit the church of Santa María a Real, we have time to go inside some of the pallozas and begin to enjoy Galicia’s gastronomy. In the afternoon we continue our journey and stop at the monastery of San Xulián de Samos, with one of Spain’s largest cloisters. We end the day in Sarria, a town that has been connected to the Way of St. James since its origin in the medieval period, staying at a hotel that is right on The Way: the 3-star Hotel Carrís Alfonso IX. Dinner (optional) and accommodation.

  • Day 2

    We have breakfast and set off for Lugo. We walk along the top of the wall that is one of the best preserved Roman military fortifications, which is why it was declared World Heritage Site, and we have time to stroll along the old quarter and visit the Cathedral, as well as to taste some “tapas” (snacks) in the area around the square known as Praza do Campo. Our journey continues towards the coast, stopping along the way for lunch and then reaching Ferrol: Europe’s only intact military port and the largest naval base dating from the period of the Enlightenment. We take a trip along the estuary that enables us to admire the defensive fortresses that are the castles of San Filipe, A Palma, and the military dockyards (Arsenal). We then go to the 4-star Hotel Carrís Almirante, in the heart of the Magdalena Quarter, or to the 3-star Parador de Ferrol, a state-owned hotel with spectacular views of the military dockyards, and then enjoy some time off. Dinner (optional) and accommodation.

  • Day 3

    We have breakfast and set off for the mountain range known as Serra da Capelada. We stop at the fishermen’s village of Cariño before beginning the journey uphill towards A Vixía de Herbeira (613 m), one of Europe’s highest cliffs. After admiring the view from this balcony over the Atlantic Ocean, we continue towards the village of Santo André de Teixido, famous for the legend that says “vai de morto quen non vai de vivo” (those who do not go there in their lifetime will do so after they are dead) and we have time to walk down to the sanctuary and leave a stone on the milladoiros (stone mounds) as proof of our journey, in addition to fulfilling other traditions and rituals in the surrounding area of the sanctuary. We then continue towards Cedeira, a lovely fishermen’s village, where we enjoy some time off. Lunch at one of its restaurants is optional. Towards mid afternoon we return along the coast by the wild beaches of Vilarrube, Pantín and Valdoviño towards Ferrol and A Coruña. Accommodation options are: The modern 4-star Hotel Carrís Marineda City located in Galicia’s largest shopping mall (in the city outskirts), or the 5-star Hotel Hesperia Finisterre, the hotel with the most tradition in the city, located right in front of the seafront promenade and only a few metres away from the square known as Praza de María Pita. Accommodation.

  • Day 4

    We have breakfast and go on a panoramic tour of A Coruña, with a brief stop at the Tower of Hercules, declared World Heritage Site because it is the world’s oldest Roman lighthouse that is still in operation. We then take the motorway towards Carballo to enter the Costa da Morte. We feel the roughness of the wind and the force of the Atlantic Ocean at the cape known as Cabo Vilán and we arrive in Muxía to visit the sanctuary of the Virxe da Barca (Our Lady of the Boat), with many devout followers and located in a spectacular setting by the edge of the sea, on the rocks. We continue towards Fisterra, where we have time off to enjoy the seafaring and pilgrim atmosphere around the port area. Lunch at one of its restaurants is optional. We then head towards the lighthouse, located at the end of the cape, and that during ancient times was believed to be the end of the known world. We enjoy the views, which, depending on the season, may be accompanied by a beautiful sunset. We then begin the journey back to Santiago de Compostela. Accommodation in the old quarter: at the 3-star Hotel Carrís Casa de la Troya (hotel boutique, opened in 2011) a few metres away from the Cathedral, or at the emblematic 5-star Parador – Hostal dos Reis Católicos. In both cases the busy street known as Rúa do Franco is close by to enjoy the typical atmosphere of wine and tapas (snacks) dining. Accommodation

  • Day 5

    We have breakfast and in the morning take a walking tour of Santiago’s old quarter, declared World Heritage Site. We visit the four monument squares around the Cathedral: Obradoiro, Quintana de Mortos, Praterías, and Acibechería, as well as the palace known as the Pazo de Fonseca, one of the original sites of the University of Santiago, and finally we visit the Cathedral. If we are lucky we may be able to enjoy (not guaranteed) the spectacle of the botafumeiro, the giant thurible that flies above the crossing's naves and that is not only one of this city's unique rites but also an exciting experience. Lunch at a restaurant is optional. In the afternoon we go on a bicycle outing to admire the magnificent and incomparable architecture of the City of Culture, by the New York architect Peter Eisenman. Returning to the old quarter, we stop at the park of Domingos de Bonaval, which offers incomparable views for taking photographs of Santiago’s old quarter and we then visit the tree-lined boulevard known as A Alameda, a stately park where a privileged observation point is located, with a view of the cathedral jutting out in the horizon, and which is spectacular at dusk. Accommodation.

  • Day 6

    We have breakfast and set off for Tui, where we stop briefly before continuing towards the ancient settlement of the Castro de Santa Trega, Galicia’s most visited Celtic fortification, which offers amazing views of the mouth of the river Miño, between Spain and Portugal. Following the road that borders the Atlantic coastline we reach Baiona. Depending on the season we visit Baiona and have an appetizer at the Parador (winter) or take a boat trip to the Cíes Islands (summer).
    The tour of Baiona begins with a walk along the walls of the luxury state-owned hotel Parador Conde de Gondomar which offers the best views of the Cíes Islands, one of the four archipelagos that make up the National Park of the Atlantic Islands. We enjoy an appetizer with Galician specialties and then we have time off to stroll along the seafront promenade and discover a replica of the Caravel La Pinta among the sailboats in the Royal Yacht Club.
    The trip to the Cíes departs from the port and docks at the Rodas beach, considered by many to be one of the world's most beautiful beaches. Accompanied by an official Park guide, we take a short hike to the peak known as Alto do Príncipe (111 m) to enjoy spectacular views of Vigo’s estuary. We then return to Baiona or Vigo, depending on our choice of accommodation.
    For groups staying at the 4-star Hotel Carrís Beiramar in Vigo, we arrive there with enough time to visit the quarter known as the Barrio da Pedra and its famous “Rúa das Ostras” (Oyster Street). Dinner (optional) and accommodation.

  • Day 7

    We have breakfast and set off for Ourense to then enter the Ribeira Sacra, which hosts Europe’s largest collection of Romanesque style religious buildings. We travel along the Sil River in a catamaran along its deep canyon, flanked by Mencía grape vineyards and monasteries such as Santo Estevo (today a state-owned hotel) and Santa Cristina de Ribas de Sil. Lunch at a restaurant is optional. In the afternoon we visit the monastery of San Pedro de Rocas, one of Galicia’s oldest, and which boasts the singular feature of being carved out of the rock. Depending on the chosen accommodation, we either return to the Parador de Santo Estevo de Ribas Sil or to the recently opened and centrally located 4-star Hotel Carrís Cardenal Quevedo in Ourense’s city centre. Accommodation.

  • Day 8

    We have breakfast and set off on our return trip, feeling the morriña (nostalgia) that many suffer when leaving these lands. The guide bids the group farewell on its journey home.

Specific conditions

Accommodation at Carrís Hotels
    From 16 to 24 persons    385€
    From 25 to 34 persons    345€
    From 34 to 44 persons    329€
    From 45 to 55 persons    325€
    Individual supplement    175€
    High season supplement (July, August and September)    25€
    Mid season supplement    165€

Accommodation at Paradores de Turismo
    From 16 to 24 persons    825€
    From 25 to 34 persons    799€
    From 34 to 44 persons    785€
    From 45 to 55 persons    765€
    Individual supplement    375€
    High season supplement (July, August and September)    95€
    Mid season supplement    275€

Rate per person in double room, depending on hotels and no. of persons in group.

Services included

Official guide during 8 days in Galicia, from O Cebreiro to Monterrei.

7 nights at specified hotels, to choose between Carrís Hotels or Paradores de Turismo.

7 buffet style breakfasts at specified hotels.

One speed boat trip along the estuary of Ferrol.

One bicycle outing to the City of Culture in Santiago de Compostela.

One entrance fee to visit the wall in the Parador Conde de Gondomar.

One trip to the Cíes Islands with a guided hiking trail or appetizer at the Parador Conde de Gondomar (subject to availability of regular boat service to Cíes Islands).

One catamaran trip along the canyons of the river Sil.

Travel insurance for passengers with Spanish nationality.