Walking along the Camino del Norte

Camino del Norte: Stages 1-5

Walk the full Camino del Norte - a dramatic and sometimes challenging route to Santiago, this Camino more accurately reflects the true pilgrim experience. Taking you from San Sebastian along the north coast of Spain to Santiago de Compostela, the route alternates between dramatic coast, rugged Galician mountains and some of the best cities in Spain. We offer the Camino del Norte in five sections of roughly a week each. Walk just one section, perhaps the last one to Santiago to gain your Compostela, or combine two or more sections for a longer pilgrimage. This walk is one sure to stay in your memory for a long time to come!
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Laura Paterson
updated on: November 23, 2021
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Viewing format
Difficulty moderate
Distance 26.9 km
Duration 8:00 h
Ascent 601 m
Descent 571 m

Leave San Sebastián behind as you follow the Camino through the countryside, passing the small village of Zarautz and reaching your overnight ...

from Heleen Bosch,   Macs Adventure
Hiking trail
Getaria to Deba
Difficulty difficult
Distance 17.7 km
Duration 6:00 h
Ascent 550 m
Descent 572 m

A scenic walk from Getaria as you head to the stunning beach and seaside village of Deba.

from Heleen Bosch,   Macs Adventure
Hiking trail
Deba to Markina
Difficulty moderate
Distance 24.6 km
Duration 8:00 h
Ascent 860 m
Descent 782 m

Follow the Camino trail as it curves inland, leaving the coast behind as you head towards the mountains with vastly different scenery.

from Heleen Bosch,   Macs Adventure
Difficulty moderate
Distance 25.1 km
Duration 7:30 h
Ascent 648 m
Descent 734 m

Enjoy a tranquil walk following quiet paths crossing the river and climbing through woodland to the historic town of Gernika.

from Heleen Bosch,   Macs Adventure
Hiking trail
Gernika to Lezama
Difficulty moderate
Distance 19.8 km
Duration 6:00 h
Ascent 508 m
Descent 462 m

Today's walk includes a number of ascents and descents as you make your way towards Bilbao.

from Heleen Bosch,   Macs Adventure
Hiking trail
Lezama to Bilbao
recommended route Difficulty moderate
Distance 11 km
Duration 3:30 h
Ascent 324 m
Descent 365 m

Enjoy a varied walk from Lezama with uphill tracks through wooded areas, your efforts will be rewarded with stunning views of Bilbao.

from Heleen Bosch,   Macs Adventure
Difficulty moderate
Distance 20 km
Duration 6:30 h
Ascent 484 m
Descent 450 m

A varied route takes you from the Cadagua River to a hermitage surrounded by beautiful views. Continue to the small town of Barakaldo before ...

from Heleen Bosch,   Macs Adventure
Difficulty difficult
Distance 26.4 km
Duration 7:30 h
Ascent 406 m
Descent 411 m

Today's walk to Castro Urdiales will take you back to the rocky coastline and a beautiful beach of red sand near La Arena.

from Heleen Bosch,   Macs Adventure
Difficulty moderate
Distance 23.9 km
Duration 7:00 h
Ascent 400 m
Descent 387 m

A varied day ahead with views of coastal cliffs, medieval castles, and lighthouses along the way.

from Heleen Bosch,   Macs Adventure
Hiking trail
Liendo to Noja
Difficulty moderate
Distance 21.6 km
Duration 6:00 h
Ascent 277 m
Descent 276 m

Today's hike takes you from the Liendo Valley to Laredo beach to catch a ferry to Santoña, from where you will continue along the coast to Noja.

from Heleen Bosch,   Macs Adventure
Hiking trail
Noja to Galizano
Difficulty moderate
Distance 21.8 km
Duration 6:00 h
Ascent 318 m
Descent 311 m

Head inland from Noja to the village of Güemes and then Galizano.

from Heleen Bosch,   Macs Adventure
Difficulty moderate
Distance 15.1 km
Duration 4:30 h
Ascent 42 m
Descent 48 m

Continue along the coast and cliffs to Somo before taking a small ferry (payable locally) to the capital of Cantabria, Santander.

from Heleen Bosch,   Macs Adventure
Difficulty moderate
Distance 21.2 km
Duration 6:00 h
Ascent 237 m
Descent 176 m

A short taxi transfer will bring you from Santander to the start of your walk to Santillana del Mar. 

from Heleen Bosch,   Macs Adventure
Difficulty moderate
Distance 22.1 km
Duration 6:00 h
Ascent 406 m
Descent 467 m

Today's walk continues along the Cantabrian coast, passing villages and finishing at the beach in Comillas.

from Heleen Bosch,   Macs Adventure
Difficulty moderate
Distance 11.3 km
Duration 3:00 h
Ascent 122 m
Descent 163 m

Quiet trails via grassy fields and church towers before reaching San Vicente de la Barquera.

from Heleen Bosch,   Macs Adventure