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Caminho de Geira y Arrieiros
By Alejandro Gonzalez Flores | 29/11/2019
Slow, but it comes. The Xacobeo 2021 is approaching and everything makes us think that the flood of "Pilgrims" will be historic, record.
The roads will be filled like never before, and the Pilgrim, that romantic character, the one who sees the road not as a bottle, or as a cheap holiday, will be overhead, perhaps, the idea of parting his pilgrimage to the next year for fear of getting into a collapsed freeway and that what he sees as a pilgrimage will end up becoming a nightmare.
Well. This article is addressed to you, Peregrine, to you who see the road as something magical, that when you call you, you go. What do you feel when you walk through those millenary stones of roads and bridges, the suffering and energy of thousands and thousands of Pilgrims who once went through those same milestones?
I want to tell you that the battle is not totally lost. What are countless ways in which you can still find yourself again, enjoy the loneliness or the chosen company, not imposed.
Infinity yes, and variety. There are Navarre, Galicia, Castilla, Andalusia, plateau. There are France, there are Portugal, etc. Miles and miles of roads to explore.
Of course, you have to pay a price. You do not always have a bar in each town or at the end of the stage you are waiting for a hospital to welcome you (to you and to forty other Pilgrims). The price to be paid is paid at ease when what is sought is to "make the way".
Once you lose your fear of getting out of the freeway and going into secondary roads, you realize that the latter is magic. And that the paisanaje in the form of a clothesline, innkeeper, waiter, pastor, hospital, lovers of the road who struggle to see Pilgrims pass through their village, that almost empty village that looks at the road as the only hope to stop the bloodletting of desertization, are desiring you to go, to see you, to give you a conversation, to open the bar of the people to give "the pilgrim" that easy and at your time.
Today I come to talk to you about one of those paths. "The Geira Walk and Arrive."
This road begins in Braga (Portugal) and soon the Pilgrim is realized that it is not just any way. Roman roads and miliaries will accompany you to the border crossing the national park peneda-gerês. You're crossing millenary bridges like the goose game is being treated. You will be able to enjoy hot springs once you enter Galicia to re-enter the neighboring country and close the roof of the road in Castro laboreiro. Once again you cross that border to enter the region of the ribeiro and pass, among many other peoples, through Ribadavia, capital of the Kingdom of Galicia between 1065 and 1071. From there the road will be much more physically bearable but will remain friendly in sight, not only for its corridors, villages and monuments but also for its people. We have examples for this, as in many other peoples, in Beariz and Codeseda, villages that have their way in every way. And then Santiago.
What else can you ask for?
It is also fair to say that it is a complicated path due to its orography and lack of signaling in different sections, so, today, it is necessary to have a GPS or an app that guides your steps.
The lack of hostels of Peregrinos is another handicap than your supply with hostels, pensions, fondas and rural houses along the way. Where the Pilgrim will always be welcomed with open arms and doors. This expands the budget but is earned in comfort. Although gradually some hostel is opening and along the route I found several people interested in opening more.
In the Caminho de Geira and Arrieiros the Pilgrim will meet with many people or associations fighting for this road to go ahead and more and more the Pilgrims who pass it.
It is an enormous amount of work that all of them are doing, which is gradually bearing fruit.
I myself experienced it in the first person and I can say that they made me feel like a true Pilgrim.
Henrique Malheiro and Carlos de Codeseda Viva are a clear example of this, besides being the alma mater of this road.
If any of you who read this article are considering making this path they may give you that last push to finish your decision.
Henrique, what would you say to a pilgrim that is planning fazer or caminho, but that is undecided?
Vem persecuting the walks of Gallaecia, an anti-Roman province, located not north of Portugal and Galiza.
Um Caminho introspectivo onde podes viver o spirito verdeiro dos antigos peregrinos num percurso, totally surrounded pela natureza, ainda virgem and num território quase despovoado y abandon.
Vem passar as pontes dos nossos rios, notably; Minho, Cávado, Lima, Deva, Ávia, Umia and Ulla.
Let me talk to the humble and hospitable people of northern Portugal and give thanks to passagem.
No end, in Santiago, you will feel an autêntico peregrino.
And your Carlos, who would tell that undecided Pilgrim that he is considering making the Geira Walk and Arrieros?
Carlos de Codeseda Viva:
I would tell him that now is the time to discover the awakening of the Geira Road and the Arrieiros. It is a route on the Roman road that preserves more militants from all over Europe, that is packaged in the only National Park of Portugal and that crosses the area of production of the most valued wine in Compostela in the Middle Ages. All of this decorated by churches of Santiago, places of entrustments of ancient knights protecting pilgrims, crosses, hoops of souls and bridges in which their image still reflects their history. Certainly, a return to the real Camino.
Thank you Henrique and Carlos.
Anyone who takes advantage of this wonderful road will find a millenary but unspoilt journey, and people who are on this road from Braga to Santiago.
An experience very close to what the road should be before its mass. Which makes it an ideal path for that Pilgrim who seeks that extra point of adventure and search in his pilgrimage. That is why I, too, believe that it is time to do this.
Now the decision is yours.
If you encourage you to walk it, congratulations, because you won't regret it.
Go, respect it and respect the enormous work of very many people and enjoy, especially enjoy.