Via de la Plata stretches across Spain from Seville to Santiago, moving up the western peninsula and through centuries of history. It’s one of the routes that will allow you to obtain the Compostela (certificate of pilgrimage) when you walk at least from Ourense to Santiago.
– total distance: 960km
– an alternative route to avoid crowds of more popular Camino routes
– very peaceful, unlikely to meet lots of pilgrims
– variety of scenery, from dry to green landscapes across Spain
– there are has some short, steep climbs along the way
– main cities & towns – Spain: Sevilla, Mérida, Cáceres, Salamanca, Granja de la Moruela, Astorga, Santiago de Compostela
Via de la Plata (the Silver Way) doesn’t refer to actual silver but is thought to be derived from the Latin word ‘Lapidata’ meaning stone road, or possibly the Arabic word ‘Balatta’ meaning road.
This Camino route was the main path used by the Christian pilgrims during the Muslim domination of Spain. It starts in Seville, South of Spain, being quite popular for those who get to Spain through North Africa.
This route was traditionally used for agricultural and trade purposes between the north and south of Spain. During Roman times, a huge access road was built to facilitate the transit of troops, goods, and traders. Which also assisted with spreading the Roman culture and providing a means of controlling the territory. The route connected Emerita Augusta (Merida) with Asturica Augusta (Astorga), and crosses the western part of the Iberian Peninsula from south to north, traveling over the basins of the Tajo and Duero Rivers. The Way was laid out in early Christian times with older roads providing a convenient template.
When the Roman Empire fell, the route was used by the Moors to advance into northern Spain and then subsequently by the Spanish during the Reconquista. From the 9th Century onwards, Mozarabic pilgrims from the south of Spain, North Africa and other parts of the Mediterranean started using it as a Camino route. Mozarabic pilgrims were Iberian Christians living under Moorish rule.
The route begins in Seville, the capital of southern Spain’s Andalusia region and a Game of Thrones filming location. It then moves north, passing through the regions of Extremadura and Castilla y Leon before finishing at Santiago de Compostela in Galicia.
This is the longest route of all the Caminos. It’s well marked and keeps mostly to paths and paved roads. Although easier in terms of terrain than the French Way, some days are longer and don’t have as many facilities.
Summer – very warm (between 25° to 30° June-Aug)
Fall – warm (between 16° to 22° Sep-Nov)
Winter – cool (average 13°)
Spring – warm (average 15° to 19° March-May)
The Via de la Plata is very well indicated, with lots of yellow arrows that help us get easily to Santiago. We can also see granite blocks with little ceramic tiles of different colors; if it’s yellow it means that we can go through it but is not the original way and if it’s green means that is the original way of the Roman route. We should be careful to follow the ones that are yellow or yellow and green because those are the ones that take us to Santiago.
01 – Sevilla > Guillena – 22.8km
02 – Guillena > Castilblanco de los Arroyos – 18.2km
03 – Castilblanco de los Arroyos > Almadén de la Plata – 28.8km
04 – Almadén de la Plata > Monesterio – 34.4km
05 – Monesterio > Fuente de Cantos – 21.2km
06 – Fuente de Cantos > Zafra – 24.6km
07 – Zafra > Villafranca de los Barros – 19.2km
08 – Villafranca de los Barros > Torremejía – 27km
09 – Torremejía > Mérida – 16km
10 – Mérida > Alcuéscar – 36.4
11 – Alcuéscar > Cáceres – 38.2
12 – Cáceres > Embalse de Alcántara – 33.4km
13 – Embalse de Alcántara > Grimaldo – 20.4km
14 – Grimaldo > Carcaboso – 30.8km
15 – Carcaboso > Aldeanueva del Camino – 38.6km
16 – Aldeanueva del Camino > La Calzada de Béjar – 22.2km
17 – La Calzada de Béjar > Fuenterroble de Salvatierra – 20.2km
18 – Fuenterroble de Salvatierra > San Pedro de Rozados – 28.6km
19 – San Pedro de Rozados > Salamanca – 23km
20 – Salamanca > El Cubo de la Tierra del Vino – 36.4km
21 – El Cubo de la Tierra del Vino > Zamora – 31.8km
22 – Zamora > Montamarta – 18.6km
23 – Montamarta > Granja de la Moreruela – 22.9km
24 – Granja de la Moreruela > Benavente – 27.2km
25 – Benavente > Alija del Infantado – 21.9km
26 – Alija del Infantado > La Bañeza – 22.1km
27 – La Bañeza > Astorga – 24.5km
28 – Astorga > Foncebadón – 25.8km
29 – Foncebadón > Ponferrada – 24.2km
30 – Ponferrada > Villafranca – 24.2km
31 – Villafranca > O Cebreiro – 27.8km
31 – O Cebreiro > Triacastela – 20.8km
32 – Triacastela > Sarria – 18.4km
33 – Sarria > Portomarin – 22.2km
34 – Portomarin > Palas de Rey – 24.8km
35 – Palas de Rey > Arzúa – 28.5km
36 – Arzúa > Pedrouzo – 19.3km
37 – Pedrouzo > Santiago de Compostela – 19.4km
Known in English as the Way of Saint James among other names, is a network of pilgrims’ ways serving pilgrimage to the shrine of the apostle Saint James the Great in the cathedral of Santiago de Compostela in Galicia in northwestern Spain, where tradition has it that the remains of the saint are buried. Many follow its routes as a form of spiritual path or retreat for their spiritual growth. It is also popular with hiking and cycling enthusiasts and organized tour groups.
– Camino Francés
– Camino Portuguese
– Camino del Norté
– Le Puy Camino
– Finisterre Camino
– Arles Camino
– Geneva Camino
– Camino Catalán
– Camino Mozarabe
– Chemin de Paris et de Tours
– Camino Inglés
– Camino to Fátima
– Via De La Plata
– Camino Primitivo
– Vezelay Camino
– Via Appia
– Cluny Camino
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