Vicente is currently cycling 750km the Camino de Santiago in memory of his wife Libby. 

Follow his journey here.

Day One- 12th September 2022

Dear friends, I finished my first stage and really enjoyed it. It took me almost 10 hours but I wasn’t cycling all the time. Talking to peregrinos, visiting churches and sights of interest. There is so much to do that one can spend the whole day. The weather was amazing, terrain a bit challenging at times, everyone friendly, chatty, time just flies. Los Arcos is a small place, it reminds me my pueblo, perhaps that is why I feel so much at home fully. Hasta mañana. Thank you very much to the kind people who have donated. Buen camino

Day Two- 13th September 2022

Hola đź‘‹ amigos, day 2.

From Los Arcos (Navarra province) to Najera (La Rioja province). Duration 8 hours, not only did I cycle and meet more interesting peregrinos but I did some grape harvesting, visited Campo Viejo (very traditional wine producers) wine museum, beat my biking speed record, doing 57k/h, was assisted by a couple of Good Samaritans and admired the sheer beauty of the Ebro river and the najerilla river. My daughter says "life is beautiful” and I keep thinking she is right.

Hasta mañana. Hacia adelante y buen camino. Vicente

Day Three- 14th September 2022

Amigos, Day 3.

Nájera to Belorado (Burgos province). Duration 8 hours, weather very pleasant and still surrounded left and right of vineyards that will produce the very much sought after Rioja wine. The route was hard with dodgy ascents and descents that proves how resilient, tough and inspiring the pilgrims are. I stopped in Santo Domingo de la Calzada old town with many churches, see the link between one of the then and the Vatican, monasteries and the highest tower in La Rioja, see picture. I will spend the night in Belorado, small but quaint town with a lovely plaza Mayor. Please feel free to ask any questions I’ll do my best to answer them.
Life is beautiful, hacia adelante y buen camino. Vicente

Day Four- 15th September 2022

Amigos, Day 4, it’s after midnight when I’m writing this post but don’t think it is because I’ve just arrived in Burgos, no, no. It was because during my 8 hours journey I learned:
a. The deposits of the a mountain range, fossil remains and evidence of the presence of five different species of hominids have been found: Homo sp. (still to be determined, 1,300,000 years old), Homo antecessor (850,000 years), preneanderthal (500,000 years), Homo neanderthalensis (50,000 years) and Homo sapien.
b. The endurance and the fighting spirit of the modern human, experienced among the peregrinos race is still to be rediscovered.
c. The peregrinos doing el Camino are amazing people.
d. My own personal experience today was very special physically and mentally, hence the reason I’m writing this post now.

Resuming el Camino will enrich your life.
Hasta mañana/ hoy
Life is beautiful, hacia adelante y buen camino. Vicente

Day Five- 16th September 2022

Hola amigos, day 5.

Burgos to Castrojeriz. While I wait for my well earned 3 course meal plus wine, I will tell that the duration today was just over 6 hours, the route was bearable once we negotiated a dangerous descent. I love religious buildings and would recommend spending a day in Burgos after your arrival, there’s so much to see, I didn’t have that treat.

The scenery has changed, see the photos and judge for yourselves, and the number of pilgrims is increasing as we get closer, 456k, to Santiago.

Thank you for your support and donations. Life is beautiful, hacia adelante y buen camino peregrinos.

Take care and God bless you all. Vicente

Day Six- 17th September 2022

Amigos, Day 6.

Castrojeriz to Carrión de los Condes, 53km. I started this day with some trepidation because the last of couple of days have been rather hectic and last night was a late one thanks to the amazing hospitality given by the owner of La posada de C and the warm welcome offered by the locals.

I’ve to mention at this stage Santiago Ways, official travel agency of el Camino, as they seem to pick the right locations, right venues etc, I’d highly recommend to check with them if you’re thinking of doing el Camino.

I left at 8.30am, the route is quite comfortable compared to the previous ones, so I had time to enjoy it and to reflect. My thoughts were in my late wife missing her terribly and wishing she was with me, she was a regular and experienced walker and she would have loved doing el Camino. I stopped to regain strength and composure when a peregrino stopped, we shared stories, hugged and carried on. That’s what el Camino is for and what it does to peregrinos, another friend!

I’m now in a different province Palencia and found one the most beautiful hotels I’ve ever visited, see the pics, if ever you’re in the area please go in, it’s an old monastery converted into a magnificent hotel. There was a wedding to make it even more fitting for the occasion, the weather was superb.

Thank you again for the people who have donated, thank you Hannah, AAT, who has helped and is helping me with running the web site.
Life is beautiful, hacia adelante y buen camino. Vicente

Day Seven - 18th September 2022

Amigos, Day 7, Carrión de los Condes to Sahagún, 43k, weather is still superb for walking or cycling, more Peregrinos around, the route doable, I’d like to think we are all getting fitter.

Sahagún( h is not pronounced in Spanish). There are many churches and monasteries the town is famous mainly because they issue the “”carta peregrina”” which is a document that certifies that the bearer has reached the town which is the centro geográfico of del Camino, see pic. I decided to go back to monastery Zoilo, yesterday’s location, as I needed to revisit. I also attach the “credential del Peregrino” which requires stamps from the location Peregrinos visit and once they collect a minimum number of stamps they officially recognised as Peregrinos.

I keep getting notifications from AAT of donations and I want to thank them for their kindness.
Life is beautiful, hacia adelante y buen camino. Vicente

Day Eight - 19th Septmeber 2022

Amigos. Day 8, Sahagun to Mansilla de las mulas. I wrote the post and lost it, I said the route is very monotonous, flat and straight, some Peregrinos decide to skip it, plus tomorrow’s too.

I have gone over the half way mark, 416km. I’d like to welcome Robert and Carola from NZ, pic with R, to the group. Rob is a plasma donor and I want to praise and thank him for his kindness as I know how important that is for all the patients suffering from blood disorder illnesses.

Hasta mañana
Life is beautiful, hacia adelante y buen camino. Vicente

Day Nine- 20th September 2022

Amigos, Day 9.

Mansilla de las Mulas to Villar de Mazarife, 45km, good conditions metereologically and topographically. I decided to go to Leon, thriving city, active social life and a beautiful cathedral, see photos. It was magic walking around, seeing the locals having a good time and dining at 10.00pm. I highly recommend a visit to Leon. Life is beautiful, hacia adelante and buen camino.

Day Ten - 21st September 2022

Amigos, Day 10, Villar de Mazarife to Foncebadon, 63km, 7 hours, the weather is still fabuloso.

After 9 days of cycling fatigue sometimes kicks in and today’s stage was very challenging. The first half to Astorga was ok and I was pleasantly surprised to find that it’s a lovely city with a wonderful cathedral, palacio de Gaudí and many other important sights, highly recommended. The second half was pretty horrendous, 10-12km of steep and arduous ascent you can’t see the top, eventually you do and end up in the most quaint, picturesque and pretty location you can imagine, so you think all the hard work to get there so worthwhile. I think so.
People keep donating and I thank them from the bottom of my heart.
Life is beautiful, hacia adelante and buen camino. Vicente

Day Eleven - 22nd September 2022

Amigos. Day 11, Foncebadón to Villafranca del Bierzo, 55km.

I’m surprised I did so well, because while the route wasn’t too hard I stopped a few times, anyway let me tell what happened today. I reached the highest point of el Camino, 1504m. see picture. There’s a chapel and we (Peregrinos), sang/mimed with a group of French ladies, it was wonderful. The scenery is changing as we approach Galicia, plenty of greenery and hills, magnificent. Then I had a scary descent that lasted 15km and finally I got to Ponferrada, nice breakfast, viejo Castillo. I got on my rocinante, that is what don Quijote called his loyal companion hence my name to my bike.

The weather was beautiful, 25°C so I decided to go all the way to Villafranca del B. That’s is all for today I have a tough high mountain stage tomorrow but I know Santiago, los peregrinos, family and friends will be cheering me on.

Thank you for your kindness and donations.
Life is beautiful, hacia adelante y buen camino.

Day Twelve - 23rd September 2022

Amigos, Day 12, Villafranca del Bierzo to Sarria, 67km.

I said yesterday that today was to be a tough day and it was. First 15k quite doable after we stayed climbing and climbing and climbing on a very stony terrain that made it difficult at times, so much so that the young Dutch lady, in the pic, felt for me and offered to help and I was so grateful, that’s what Peregrinos do, help each other. The scenery is breathtaking, see pics, we are now in Galicia and if you get to my first stop Cebreiro you run out of superlatives: magic, miraculous, unique, mesmerising etc. I left to complete another 42k and finally arrived in Sarria where many people will join el Camino in order to get the official credencial del Peregrino. It will be busier from now until Santiago. People keep donating and I, and the AAT, want to thank them most sincerely for their kindness.
Life is beautiful, hacia adelante, buen camino. Vicente

Day Thirteen - 24th September 2022

Amigos, Day 13, Sarria to Melide, 63km, duration 6 hours.

I’m approaching Santiago(de Compostela), and I feel I could continue but I won’t. Today was diverse: bit of rain, nice welcome to towns, dry rivers, still green scenery, mixed emotions and amazing paella at the end.

Rocinante has been my loyal companion but I’ve had another company without whose company my challenge would, most certainly, have not been as exciting, revealing, self discovering as it’s been.

Looking forward to reaching Santiago.

Life is beautiful, hacia adelante and buen camino Vicente

The Traditional Pilgrims Pray

Lord, may this stone, a symbol of my efforts on the pilgrimage that I lay at the foot of the cross, weigh the balance in favour of my good deeds some day when the deeds of my life are judged. Let it be so.

To let go:

It's a powerful moment to lay a stone at Cruz de Ferro on Monte Irago, the Camino's highest point, as you silently enact a ritual of gratitude, forgiveness, or letting go.

Day Fourteen - Last Day - 25th September 2022

Amigos Day 14, Melide to Santiago de Compostela, 53km, just over 2 hours.

I loved, and still do, Santiago but I didn’t know how much he loves me and all the Peregrinos, if you read on you will have the answer.

My day, to be the last one, was perfect, the ride nice and easy, the weather ideal for riders and walkers, the scenery, as you approach his town, still hilly and greenery. Once we enter the town you get that warm welcome by everyone you see and when you get to his home the Cathedral, well that is majestic, beautiful, serene. Admired by thousands of all faiths and credos. All the buildings near by are special and unique. One of them happens to be the accommodation for the night, which is an old magnificent priesthood school, where I started my education, converted into a hotel. Why all those things happened in my visit here? Santiago has the answer, he loves me.

Also I had to say adiós to my Rocinante, that saddened me a bit but I’ll treasure the over 746 km and 70 hours we’ve spent together, sharing good and hard moments, not once did he let me down plus the fact he helped me find my Dulcinea.

I didn’t want el peregrinaje to finish but like all good things there is always an end, and I will add that my challenge has been thoroughly enjoyable, have met amazing people, have fulfilled my expectations and beyond and highly recommended it.

I also want to thank special people:
a. My wonderful daughters, Rachel and Natalie, for their support, enthusiasm, understanding and encouragement for me to get it done and above all for their, and their friends, donations
b. You mis amigos for your support and GREAT DONATIONS. I’m humbled for that. I know one the main reasons for taking this challenge was to raise awareness and funds for AAT who are extremely kind, good people and work very hard helping the sufferers, their family and their friends.
c. The ones have followed my challenge but I don’t know to reach them
d. Finally I would like to mention my shadow companion, with whom I have shared magic moments and has helped me with making this challenge one of the most unforgettable experiences.

Well we say Adiós, en gallego they say adeur.
All the Peregrinos get certain accreditation for having completed their challenge and enclose some photos with that and other items.
Life is beautiful, siempre adelante y?. Vicente