The plan was to find a stopover on our way back to Santander, at the end of our motor home tour of Spain and as an alternative to Burgos and the result was Castrojeriz.
We were not anticipating anything too dramatic but we were very pleasantly surprised.
We stayed at the campsite ‘Camino de Santiago’which is just outside the town and is attractively set on two levels with the added bonus of the backdrop of the castle at Castrojeriz.
We again received a superb welcome and the sanitary facilities were good. It also has a pleasant bar area and it also provides food cooked on an open BBQ area and very reasonably priced..
Again this was an ACSI site so very competitively priced with spacious pitches available and the added benefit of a resident hoopoe.
The site takes its name from the ’ Camino de Santiago’ or ‘Pilgrims Way’ which runs straight through the town.
The Pilgrims Way or the Way of St. James was one of the most important Christian Pilgrimages of the Middle Ages, alongside Rome and Jerusalem.
The legend is that the remains of St James’ were carried by boat from Jerusalem to northern Spain where he was buried ,on what is now the city of Santiago de Compostela.
In my naivety I first thought that there was only one pilgrim route leading to Santiago de Compostela but there is a veritable ‘motorway’ of routes and you could easily substitute ‘All roads lead to Santiago de Compostela’ for ‘All roads lead to Rome’.
Modern pilgrims still walk the route and alongside it has grown an industry catering for their needs, providing in some cases basic accommodation and the option of a simple pigrims’ meal and these are very evident in Castrojerriz. What is also evident is the countless number of churches, monasteries and convents in the town and its environs.
The 14th Century Iglesia de San Juan
Religion was big business in medieval times. .A good perspective of this can be provided by climbing to the top of the castle outside of the town and enjoying a superb panorama with the added advantage of seeing beeeaters darting through the trees half way down, on the townside of the castle. These colourful birds are spectacular in flight and perched.
Modern pilgrims can have a passport which they can get stamped at the various stopovers on route and the campsite is used for this purpose.
Castrojeriz is a very small town indeed but has enough history to occupy yourselves for a day and this coupled with the excellent campsite makes this an ideal stopover site or a chill out for a couple of days.
Medieval Houses: 'Casas Medievales del Arco de la Sardina'