Via de la Plata (Seville to Santiago)
Key information: Via de la Plata (Seville to Santiago)
- 1,000 km (six-week) pilgrimage route to Santiago de Compostela that covers almost the whole of Spains south-north length.
- A taste of virtually every stage of Spanish history, from the ancient, the Roman, the Moorish all the way through to the Civil War, all bound together by the enduring history of this stunning pilgrim trail.
- Passes through several of Spains great cities en route to the shrine at Santiago de Compostela: an architectural and archaeological dream.
- Walkopedia rating89
- Natural interest14
- Human interest15
- Negative points0
- Total rating89
- Length: 6 weeks - 1 day
- Maximum Altitude: n/a
- Level of Difficulty: Variable
The Via de la Plata is the longest of the Camino de Santiago pilgrim routes at roughly 1,000 km, or six weeks, and is a good deal less populous than the Camino Frances, affording real opportunities for solitude. It runs from Seville, across Spains parched central plain (its probably best not to take this route on in the high summer months; heat is certainly this routes main drawback), passing through the provinces of Extremadura and Castilla y Leon and Caceres, to Salamanca and Zamora.
Soon after Zamora, the trail splits, either going straight on up to join the Camino Frances at Astorga or hanging north-west along the Camino Sanbres through Ourense. This is the best route for archaeology buffs: a gold-trade route mentioned by Pliny the Elder, large sections of this route have remained unchanged for over 2000 years. It is scattered from top to bottom with Roman remains and structures, still in use today, and also gives the strongest taste of Spain under the Moors, whom St James is credited with driving out of the country many centuries after his death. In a way, this is true, for the wish to keep the routes to his burial-place safe for pilgrims was a primary driver for Europes leaders to give the Spanish a hand.
For a suggested itinerary and a lovely photographic taste, try: http://santiago-compostela.net/vdlp/index_cv_en.html
See Route below for extensive further information.
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