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Melide's Prime Attraction
Melide's Prime Attraction

From San Román to Melide

This is the final stage on the Camino Primitivo. Early on in the day, just before the Roman bridge in Ferreira, you pass a Pazo, the Casa da Ponte, an elegant country house converted into a B&B. The Pazo and the bridge are the only especially interesting sights on this stretch of the Camino. Otherwise, it's the standard Galician countryside.

Whether you start in Ferreira or back in San Román, your day will end in Melide, a major town on the Camino Francés, famous for its Romanesque churches with Mozarabic touches, its Ethnographic Museum, and its pulpo gallego. On the church doorway decorations, note the geometric patterns and motifs from Nature. Christian workmen emigrating up from the Moorish South brought with them the Islamic sensitivity about not representing human figures in relation to religion.

The Camino Primitivo and the Camino Francés join here. Melide thus welcomes you to a totally different Camino experience where you're never quite alone and where your passage is not so much a curiosity and matter of personal interest to the locals as a minor economic event for them. The El Pais guide describes this as entering a human torrent which can traumatize a traveller accustomed to the intimacies of The North.

Casa da Ponte 70 Km Pyramid Wildflowers Dry Path
A <em>Pazo</em>, the Casa da Ponte Only 70 Km to go! Wildflowers on the trail A blessed dry path

We arrived in Melide about 1:30. After checking into the Albergue de Peregrinos, which already had a few Camino Francés pilgrims sleeping in the bunks, my friend Jaime knew exactly where to go -- Ezequiel's Pulpería. This place is famous locally and to many pilgrims, but the great success of the Camino since the 1990's has changed everything. Ezequiel's still has the trestle tables and the look of a converted warehouse, but service was indifferent and the pulpo was soggy. Jaime wasn't pleased, and agreed that the pulpo was better back in Fonsagrada.

Museo Etnografico The Santa Maria
Romanesque Church
Mozarabic door
on the Sta. Maria
Similar Door on
the San Roque Church
Only 50 Km!
(Actually, 53!)
Ethno Museum, Melide The Romanesque Santa Maria Church The Santa Maria Doorway The San Roque Church 50 Km to Santiago

Tips, Tricks, and Traps

Ezequiel's Pulpería has become a tourist trap. Try somewhere else for pulpo.

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