Private (22, 18€, March to November) Albergue Santos, on the Camino on the left. Laundry facilities, microwaves. Was Viejo Quijote. Website albergue-santos.negocio.site Tel 881 169 386 Open 11:00
Private (22, 20€, April to October) Albergue Porta Real, also on Rúa dos Concheiros. Laundry facilities, microwaves. Tel 633 610 114 Open 11:00
Private (24, 16€, April to October) Albergue La Estrella de Santiago, on Rúa dos Concheiros, on the left. Laundry facilities, microwaves. Website www.laestrelladesantiago.es Tel 617 882 529 Open 09:00
Religious (173, 19€, Easter to October) Albergue Seminario Menor, off the Camino to the left. From Praza de San Pedro turn left on to Rúa de Blevís and follow the signs. Kitchen, laundry facilities, shop. You can stay as long as you like but you must vacate the dorms between 09:30 and 13:30 and return before 00:30. Private rooms. Website www.alberguesdelcamino.com Tel 881 031 768 Open 13:30
Private (20, 20€) O Fogar de Teodomiro, on Praza de la Algalia, a few minutes north of the cathedral. From the Camino turn right on to Rúa de Algalia de Arriba and walk about 200m. Kitchen, laundry facilities. Noisy and other negative reports. Tel 881 092 981
Private (12, 22€) Albergue Linares, from the Camino turn right on to Rúa de Algalia de Arriba and walk to the top and it on the right on the corner. Laundry facilities, microwaves. Website www.linaresroomssantiago.com Tel 981 943 253 Open 13:00
Private (62, 22€, April to November) The Last Stamp / El Último Sello, just to the left of the Camino at Praza de Cervantes. Kitchen. Good reports. Website www.thelaststamp.es Tel 981 563 525 Open 14:00
Private (20, 22€, March to October) Albergue Azabache, on the left just before the cathedral. Laundry facilities, microwaves. Website albergueazabache.com Tel 692 105 603 Open 11:00
Private (50, 25€, March to December) Albergue km 0, on Rúa Carretas, the same street as the Pilgrims Office, from Praza Obradoiro go left in front of the Parador and turn right. Laundry facilities, microwaves. Website santiagokm0.es Tel 881 974 992 Open 13:00
Private (34, 19€) Albergue Mundoalbergue, two minutes walk west from Praza do Obradoiro, down the steps to the left of the Ayuntamiento and continue straight, on Rúa San Clemente. Kitchen, laundry facilities. Common room with fireplace. Website www.mundoalbergue.es Tel 696 448 737 Open 11:00
Private (20, 20€) Albergue Blanco, also down Rúa das Hortas to the end, then right, on Rúa Galeras. Laundry facilities, microwaves. Private rooms. Website www.prblanco.com Tel 699 591 238 Open 14:00
Private (26, 20€, March to November) Albergue Meiga Backpackers, on Rúa dos Basquiños, same direction as Albergue La Salle, just a little further. Kitchen, laundry facilities. Some negative reports. Website www.meiga-backpackers.es Tel 981 570 846 Open 10:00
Private (24, 18€, April to October) La Estación, on Rúa Xoana Nogueira, near the railway station. Kitchen, laundry facilities. Website www.alberguelaestacion.com Tel 639 228 617 Open 12:00
Santiago offers a wide variety of accommodation ranging from five star hotels to rooms in private apartments. The quality varies greatly and there have been reports of bedbugs in some of the cheaper options (not those mentioned here). Also, you're not imagining things, in some of the small hotels you'll get a room for the same price as a bed in private pilgrim albergue. Pilgrims mostly stay around the historic old city, rarely venturing to the new part of town, which in any case is rarely necessary because the old city has all the facilities you're likely to need.
The following have been recommended for private rooms: Hospedaje Mera on Portal da Pena, from about 30€ for singles. Tel 981 583 867 Bar Tita on Rúa Nova has rooms from about 35€. Tel 981 583 867. Seminario Mayor, in the old monastery opposite the cathedral on Praza da Inmaculada, has 'flexible' pricing starting at about 30€ for single rooms, and a good buffet breakfast. You can reserve from their website: www.sanmartinpinario.eu Tel 981 583 009 Café A Campana, on Rúa da Moeda Vella, just off Praza da Inmaculada has rooms from 30€ for singles. Its location is excellent although not everybody will appreciate its 'Fawlty Towers' style of management. A 'Camino Fossil aka veteran pilgrim' (SYates on Ivar's Camino Forum) welcomes pilgrims in her home, details from her website www.egeria.house
In the same location as the Pilgrims Office is a Left Luggage Office for pilgrims, where you can leave your backpack while you're visiting the cathedral, 2€, open until 20:30, and an office to buy long-distance bus tickets and a post office. There's a helpful City Tourist Office on Rúa do Vilar, for good maps of the city, and various other leaflets about sights and events. They also organise guided tours with different themes, have MP3 audio guides and information about the Camino to Fisterra / Finisterre. On Rúa Nova is Pilgrim House, a US-run meeting space for pilgrims which provides services such as printing boarding cards and laundry. Post Office on Rúa do Franco. Supermarket on Praza do Toural, at the other end of Rúa do Vilar from the cathedral. If you used Ivar's luggage storage service then you can pick your things up from Casa Ivar, see www.casaivar.com for details. There's a taxi rank on Rúa de San Francisco, just off the Praza do Obradoiro, from where taxis will take up to four people to Finisterre for about 100€ (the exact price is down to your negotiating skills). The bus to the airport is the 6A (and not, repeat NOT the 6), you can get it from Rúa do Hórreo, past Praza de Galicia, it usually runs every 25 minutes and takes about 45 minutes, cost 1€, however please ask at the Tourist Info Office for the latest on timetable and route. A new bus station opened in 2021 replacing the old one, it's on the opposite side of the train station from the city and accessible via a pedestrian walkway.
The Pilgrims Office
The Pilgrims Office / Oficina de Peregrinos (or to call it by its correct name Centro Internacional de Acollida ao Peregrino) is where you go if you want a Compostela certificate. It is on Rúa das Carretas, from Praza do Obradoiro standing facing the Parador walk left down the ramp and turn right, it's down the end on the left. It is open 09:00 to 19:00, closed 25 December and 1 January. At busy times it's advisable to register in advance on their website oficinadelperegrino.com
Continuing its long tradition of hospitality towards pilgrims the five-star hotel, Hostal dos Reis Católicos, which is to your left when you're standing on Praza do Obradoiro facing the cathedral, provides daily free meals. It used to be a matter of showing up and queuing but nowadays only the first ten pilgrims to get their Compostelas on any given day are taken. The main shopping streets in the old city are a little away from the tourist drag are Rúa De Preguntorio and Rúa de Caldeireria, however the real action is in the new city around Praza Roxa.
If you want traditional Galician Pulpo (octopus), one of the best places is Os Concheiros, on Rúa de Berlin, which is on the Camino Francés before it gets to the old city, from the cathedral it's about a half an hour's walk. Octopus prepared in Galician style is known as Polbo á Feira. If you're tired of tapas and you never really warmed to octopus, there are lots of alternatives around town. Casa Manolo is the place to go if you need one last menú de peregrino for an affordable price with cheap wine included. It's on Praza Cervantes, on the Camino, it's a pilgrim favourite so it's wise to book. Newroz, at the south end of Rúa do Franco near the park does good kebabs and excellent falafel. On Rúa da Troia, near Praza da Inmaculada, is Bar Atlantico, a friendly place to hang out in the evenings, although it doesn't kick off till (very) late (by pilgrim standards). Petiscos Do Cardeal on Rúa do Franco has also been recommended for tapas. Casa de Xantar on Rúa San Pedro has also been recommended for local cuisine. Café Porta do Camiño, on the Camino where it crosses the road to enter the old city, opens early. For bread and empanadas try the bakery A Tafona do Preguntoiro, near The Last Stamp Albergue. In the main food market on Rúa das Ameas, is a restaurant called Marisco Manía which will cook any fish you want from the market stalls. Restaurante San Clemente on Rúa de San Clemente - near Mundoalbergue - has been recommended for seafood. Besides that, all Galician specialities are available in the many tourist restaurants around Rúa do Franco.
If you find yourself yearning for cheap (drinkable) wine, pay a visit to Bar Orense where they serve red or white the traditional way, straight from the barrel in small enamel cups. 60c a go. Ask for 'tinto / blanco de baril'. It's on Rúa do Franco, on a small square on the right as you're walking towards the cathedral.
The cathedral is open from 07:00 until 21:00, entrance is through the door on Praza de Platerias. To avoid the crowds you may want to plan to visit at an off-peak time, early in the morning or in the evening. Embracing the statue of St James and visiting the crypt is from 09:30 to 13:30 and 16:00 to 19:30. A Choir Mass is held daily at 09:30 and a Mass for Pilgrims is at 12:00 and 19:30, at peak times be sure to arrive early. The botafumeiro is swung on holy days and 'according to a calendar of liturgical services'. It can also be swung on request, in exchange for a donation. You are no longer allowed to bring your backpack or other luggage into the cathedral, see luggage store above next to Pilgrims Office.The cathedral website has a wealth of information (in Spanish) catedraldesantiago.es
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