The quiet afternoon in Guemes, or perhaps not so quiet if you persuaded yourself to visit Ajo, it allows us to face today’s stage with the energy necessary to discover the Cantabrian capital.
Let’s continue on the Camino del Norte!
On today’s stage, we will walk through gentle mountain meadows and pass by the dizzying Trasmiera cliffs, to enter the beautiful bay of Santander, with beaches such as Sardinero, Camello and Bikinis.
On this tour, you have to choose between one of three possible routes. The shortest variant, which crosses the estuary from the port of La Pedreñera to the Somo pier, with a beautiful view of the cliffs over the beaches of Arnillas and Langre.
The second alternative, considered the official one, which makes a detour through Galizando and Loredo, passing through Santa María de Latas, and also crosses the estuary; and the third option, much longer, that runs inland, bordering San Salvador, and which involves dividing the stage into two parts, due to its long distance.
If you are thinking about walking the Camino de Santiago from Bilbao tell us what your plans are for the Camino de Santiago and we will contact you to advise you on everything you need.
Itinerary stage Guemes – Santander
Today’s stage, following the coastal path, has a length of 20.5 kilometres, but in reality, of these, there are 5 kilometres that we complete on the Pedreñera ferry, so on this day you only walk 15.5 kilometres and over a fairly simple terrain. This is a very easy stage.
Guemes (km. 0). Beginning of stage
Practical tips for this section: At the end of this section you will have to decide whether to follow the official route or take the coastal alternative. You have almost an hour’s walk to think about it. If you want to follow the interior route, you will find information about it in the section about precautions. Buen Camino!
From La Cabana del Abuelo Peuto, we descend on a road towards the CA-444 road, which passes through Gargollo and connects then with the CA-443 road, which we follow along the hard shoulder to the left. Without getting lost, and among gentle hills, we reach Linderrio (km. 3,3).
Here we find the CA-141 road, which we continue to the left to enter Galizano (km. 4.4), a town in the municipality of Ribamontán al Mar. At the entrance of the town, next to a branch, we turn right on the CA-440 road that leads to Langre and Loredo.
We pass by an office and soon after the Church of Nuestra Señora de la Asunción, where the Camino del Norte presents us with a dilemma: to follow the official route or the coastal variant, both meeting up in Somo.
Galizano (km. 4,4).
Practical tips for this section: We recommend that if the weather is nice and to avoid the asphalt, take the coastal option. Buen Camino!
If you want to follow the official route, after the Church of Nuestra Señora de la Asunción, you must return to the CA-141 road, follow its path for forty minutes, to enter Loredo and visit the temple of Santa Maria de Latas.
Then the pilgrim path heads to Somo Pier, where you can take the Pedreñera ferry to Santander.
We continue along the coastal section, a very good option if the weather is nice. To do this, next to the church, we continue to the right, in the direction of the beach and La Vijanera Hotel.
We follow the coastline, crossing the district of San Miguel, where we find the first signs for the Camino de Santiago.
Taking a small detour, we arrive at Casa Aguasonda, cross a stream and go around the wall of another house. The route continues between crop fields and the beach cliffs of Arnillas and Langre. On the latter, we find a good viewpoint halfway along. (km. 7,4).
On our left, Cape Galizano enters the Cantabrian and the route follows the edge of the cliff. Behind a reddish antenna, where the houses end, we deviate from the cliff, entering a built-up street (km. 10.7). We continue straight down the street and then turn right, heading to the beach.
A path, which runs between the dunes, brings us to the Los Tranquilos beach and then to the sandy area of Loredo, from where we will enjoy a view of the city of Santander and the Magdalena peninsula. We can go around Somo by this same beach and then go inland in search of the pier.
Somo (km. 14,7).
Practical tips for this section: La Pedreñera, the ferry that crosses the estuary, runs all year round and the ticket to Santander costs about 2.50€. Buen Camino!
At the pier we take La Pedreñera to Santander, stopping during the crossing in Pedreña (km. 16,6) to pick up passengers. The boat leaves us on Paseo de la Pereda, in Santander.
From there, we continue left by the promenade and then on Calle Sotelo. Four hundred metres later, before reaching the Town Hall, we turn left by an uphill street, along which we will reach Rúa Mayor in the Cantabrian capital.
Santander (km. 20,5). Final de etapa
Practical tips for this section: Santander offers abundant and beautiful places to its visitors. As in all the big cities, we recommend that if you have time, stay in it for two days so that you can take your time. See you tomorrow!
In Santander you won’t be bored. In the Cantabrian capital you can enjoy both the natural environment and the cultural richness of the big cities. The Cantabrian capital is surrounded by sea and mountains and also has pleasant green spaces such as Los Jardines de Piquío.
On its streets, you can visit various temples such as the Cathedral de Nuestra Señora de la Asunción, Iglesias de la Anunciación, La Virgen del Faro, Nuestra Señora de la Visitación, San Francisco and Santa Lucía, as well as a Protestant cemetery.
Other attractions include El Dique de Gamazo, Mercado del Este, Hospital de San Rafael, the Rio de la Pila Funicular Railway and the Riva and Magdalena palaces, located on the peninsula of the same name.
To discover Santander in its past, you can visit the Centro de Interpretación de la Muralla, Castillo de la Corbanera or Centro de la Interpretación de la Historia de la Cuidad.
If museums are your thing, you can enjoy a visit to the Arts Centre of the Cabo Major Lighthouse, the Museo Maritimo de Cantabria, Museo Cantabrico del Ferrocarril, which exhibits two emblematic locomotives, Museo de Prehistoria y Archaeología, located in the Mercado del Este, or the Museo de Arte Moderno (MAS). Game or glamour lovers can visit the Grand Casino or Hotel Real.
Comments stage Guemes – Santander
Here are some recommendations for today’s route.
Precautions stage Guemes – Santander
Today’s stage presents no difficulty, except for the multitude of itineraries you can follow to reach the Cantabrian capital.
Both the official layout and the coastal variant, cross the estuary using the Pedreñera, a ferry transport service that facilitates the crossing of the estuary from the Somo Pier.
In the case of wanting to take the coastal route, the pilgrim route signage does not appear until you reach the district of San Miguel, but if you have doubts, next to the Church of Our Lady of the Assumption you will find several bars and a hotel, where you can ask which direction to follow.
If you do not want to take the boat, you can do this stage along the interior route, but this is considerably longer and probably involves dividing the stage into two parts.
The route is designed to stay overnight in Astillero, passing before through Castanedo, Horna, Villaverde de Pontones, La Fuente del Frances, Solares, Heras, Socabarga.
From Astillero follows to Santander or can be linked directly to the main section, in Puente Arce, thus avoiding the passage through the Cantabrian capital.
If you want to follow this interior route, we recommend that you contact the Association of Friends of the Camino de Santiago in Astillero to request more information about the route.
Phone contact number: 942 22 03 57
Food stage Guemes – Santander
Below we recommend some dishes that you can enjoy during today’s stage.
- Shellfish (cockles, razor clams…)
- Fish from the Cantabrian Sea (sea bass, anchovy, squid, sardines, bream…)
- Anchovies from Santoña
- Cheeses (Bejes-Tresviso, Liébana Valley, cream cheese, etc.)
- Sobaos (sponge cake)
- Quesada (egg and lemon pudding)
- Liébana Wine liquor
Services stage Guemes – Santander
Meet the main health care services, cafes, ATMs, restaurants and are in this stage of the Camino del Norte.
Map stage Guemes – Santander
Consult the map with the route, points and towns along the stage.
Profile stage Guemes – Santander
Consult the profile of the stage: altitude and degree of difficulty of each section.
What to do stage Guemes – Santander
Throughout today’s stage you will find various attractions. Below we provide you with information about each of them.
Playa de la Maruca
Maruca Beach is a small natural cove located on the outskirts of Santander, in the village of Monte. It has 120 metres long; it has a parking service and lifeguard stations.
Playa de la Virgen del Mar
The Virgen del Mar beach is located on the outskirts of the Cantabrian capital, in the village of San Román, next to the chapel of the same name, patron saint of the city. It has a length of about 380 metres and has shower services, parking spaces and lifeguard points.
Playa de Mataleñas
The Virgen del Mar beach is located on the outskirts of the Cantabrian capital, in the village of San Román, next to the chapel of the same name, patron saint of the city. It has a length of about 380 metres and has shower services, parking spaces and lifeguard points.
Iglesia de Nuestra Señora de la Asunción
The Church of Our Lady of the Assumption is located in the small village of Galizano, in the municipality of Ribamontán al Mar. Its construction began in 1580, although the works did not conclude until the end of the 17th century, so its architecture presents a varied mix of styles.
The temple consists of a single nave divided into three sections and topped with a polygonal apse. At the foot of the church, a large bell tower stands, topped in form of a pyramid.
On the sides of the main altar are chapels presiding over each of the naves. On the main altar is an altarpiece, in the pre-Churrigueresque style, which shelters the canvas of the Christ of Burgos and the image of Our Lady of the Assumption. The Rosary Chapel houses two other altarpieces, from the 18th and 20th centuries.
Mass times: Holidays at 10:45.
The city of Santander is among the largest cities in Spain and is home to half the population of the province of Cantabria, with just over 173,000 inhabitants. In the summer season, its population is doubled, influenced by a large number of visitors.
The city is appreciated for its beauty, combining sea and mountain. Santander has several viewpoints from which you can enjoy its privileged environment and has a total of eleven urban beaches, where the visitor can enjoy the Cantabrian Sea.
In addition to this natural environment, the Cantabrian capital is home to several temples such as the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Assumption, the churches of the Annunciation, the Virgin of the Lighthouse, Our Lady of the Visitation, St. Francis and St. Lucia, as well as a Protestant cemetery.
As examples of civil architecture, you can visit the Gamazo Dam, the East Market, the San Rafael Hospital or the Rio de la Pila Funicular Railway. Of great interest are the Riva and Magdalena palaces, located on the peninsula that bears the same name.
To get to know Santander’s past, you can visit the City Wall Interpretation Centre, Corbanera Castle or the Interpretation Centre for the history of the city.
However, Santander also has numerous museums, some of them are: The Cabo Mayor Lighthouse Art Centre, the Maritime Museum of Cantabria, the Cantabrian Museum of the Railway, which exhibits two emblematic locomotives, the Museum of Prehistory and Archaeology, located in the Eastern Market or the Museum of Modern Art (MAS).
If you prefer glamour, you can visit the Grand Casino or the Hotel Real. If on the contrary, the visitor seeks the tranquillity of urban nature can spend time on the Sardinero Beach or in the Piquío Gardens.
Catedral de Nuestra Señora de la Asunción
The Cathedral of Our Lady of the Assumption is located in the city of Santander. In 1754 it was catalogued as a cathedral and in 1931 it was declared as a building of Cultural Interest.
The temple dates from the 14th century, although during the 16th and 17th centuries several renovations were carried out. In 1941 a fire swept through Santander, affecting the cathedral, and it was then that the transept and chancel were added, raised on an octagonal dome.
Its structure has side naves that extend to a Gothic-style ambulatory, which borders the presbytery and the altar and contains two chapels in honour to St. Matthias and the Virgin of the Battles.
The temple is accessed by a Gothic-style cover with Baroque-influenced elements. On the south side of the wall, there is a cloister, from the 14th and 15th centuries, which presents sections covered by ogive vaults, on its four wings.
Inside the temple stands the main altarpiece in Baroque churrigueresque style, a baptismal font made in white marble of Arab influence and the tomb of Don Marcelino Menéndez Pelayo.
Schedule of guided tours: Closes on Mondays. From 1 July to 15 September, Tuesday to Sunday (10:00, 13:30, 16:00 and 19:30). From September 16 to June 30, Tuesday to Sunday (10:30, 12:30, 16:30 and 18:30).
Guided tour admission: Free.
The Protestant Cemetery is located on the outskirts of the city in the Cazoña district. The camp was enabled, in 1831, to bury the British who worked in Santander as engineers, technicians and traders; as they were Protestant and could not be buried in a Catholic cemetery.
However, it was not until 1912 that the final works were carried out. The cemetery is one of the few examples of Protestant heritage in Spain.
After World War II, its patronage has been made up of the UK, Sweden, Germany and Norway consulates. Since 1961 it is the German consulate itself that is responsible for the management of the site.
Faro de Cabo Mayor
The Cabo Mayor Lighthouse is located at the northwestern tip of the city of Santander, presiding over the entrance to the bay. The space in which the lighthouse is located forms a large area, in which the Cabo Mayor and Cabo Minor stand out, marked by a rugged relief, composed of cliffs and beaches.
The Cabo Mayor Lighthouse is one of the most representative works of the Cantabrian capital and inside houses an Arts Centre. This centre is a cultural project of the Port Authority, carried out with the collaboration with the Sanz-Vilar family.
This centre’s aim is for the visitor to enjoy the facilities of the lighthouse while enjoying collections of art and objects linked to the sea, all selected by the artists Isabel Villar and Eduardo Sanz.
Hours: Closes on Mondays. In summer, from Tuesday to Sunday (from 11:00 to 13:30 and from 17:00 to 21:00). In winter, from Tuesday to Sunday (from 11:00 to 13:30 and from 17:00 to 20:00).
Centro de interpretación de la historia de la ciudad
The History of Santander Interpretation Centre consists of the Cathedral of the Assumption, the Church of the Christ, the Cloister and the Bell Tower, whose site was declared a National Monument in 1931.
From the centre, visits are offered to the tower room where you can see hymnals, scrolls, paintings, archaeological remains, ornamental pieces, etc. The visit to the centre also offers the possibility to enjoy a magnificent panoramic view of the city, from the top of the bell tower.
Dique de Gamazo
The Gamazo dock in Santander was listed as a site of Cultural Interest in 2001. The construction has an area of 3,382 square metres and with a rectangular shape, being finished in semicircular form.
The dam has a machine shed and an access gate, forged in 1907, in a modernist style. Its construction posed a technical challenge for its development that was available at that time.
Funicular del Río de la Pila
The Rio de la Pila Funicular Railway in the city of Santander was inaugurated in 2008. The device makes a journey totalling 78 metres, making four stops: El Regimiento football ground, Prado San Roque, Calle San Sebastián and Río de la Pila. It has a capacity for up to 20 people.
Hours: Daily (6:00 to 00:00)
The Gran Casino de Santander was built in 1916, on a previous casino, from 1870 attended by illustrious figures such as Alfonso XIII, Amadeo de Savoy, Victoria Eugenia, among others.
The current casino combines roulette and cards with dances, plays, opera, cotillons, among other shows. The space consists of a games room and gambling machines, catering spaces, such as a restaurant, three dining rooms, two bars and a café; a party room and an exhibition hall.
Hours: Open daily. Game room (from 20:00 to 4:00) and gambling machine room (from 14:00 to 4:00).
Palacio y jardines de la Magdalena
The Magdalena Palace and Gardens are located on the peninsula of the same name. The palace and its gardens were built in 1909, although the works did not conclude until 1911.
The palatial building was built to be used by Alfonso XIII, who together with Victoria Eugenia, used it as a summer headquarters between 1913 and 1930.
The palace has two main entrances, the north entrance, with a portico, and the southern one, with a staircase. The different bodies that make up the palace, including the tower, have numerous openings that give luminosity to the construction.
Inside, the main staircase and an Adam-style lounge stand out. Its decoration is composed of a collection of furniture, paintings from the time and photographs, in which you can appreciate works by artists such as Sotomayor and Sorolla.
The palace was restored a few years ago. Since then it has been the headquarters of the Menendez-Pelayo University.
Hours: Closed On Saturdays and Sundays. Monday to Friday (12:00 to 13:00 and 16:00 to 17:00).
Hospital de San Rafael
The San Rafael Hospital is one of the oldest buildings in Santander and is still in use. The property was built in 1791, although it underwent numerous later renovations that ended up giving the construction a classist aspect.
The building consists of a rectangular floor plan and houses a central courtyard. On the ground floor, on the inner side, it has arched and pilaster arcades. On the upper floor, you can see lintel openings of various sizes. Its façade is made in ashlar and shows nine arches that make up its support.
The building has had different uses throughout its history: hospital, maternity house, hospice and clinic. In 1982, the Regional Assembly of Cantabria tendered the works of rehabilitation of the property, transforming it into its current headquarters.
The architects José Manuel Sanz and Juan López-Riobóo were responsible for the refurbishment and executed the work in 1984, they have given awarded several awards, including the 1987 Europa Nostra Prize for the conservation of European natural architectural and heritage. Currently, the building is managed by the Parliament of Cantabria.
Hotel Real is located in front of the Los Peligros beach, a few minutes from the Magdalena Palace in Santander. The hotel, part of the Eurostars chain, was opened in 1917 and is located in a building constructed by the architect González Riancho.
The construction combines modernist and eclectic styles and stands out, both for its impressive terrace and for the white colour of its façades. It is one of the most luxurious hotels in Spain.
Iglesia de la Anunciación
The Church of the Annunciation is located in the city of Santander. It is a Renaissance-style temple, built in 1607, and declared a building of Cultural Interest in 1993.
Its structure consists of a single nave and rectangular apse has side chapels connected by arches of half point. The façade is composed of three bodies.
A higher central body, which is attached two other lateral bodies, narrower and lower, are joined by a stone screen.
Mass times: Working days (11:00, 19:00 and 20:30), eve (19:00 and 20:45) and public holidays (10:00, 11:00, 12:00, 13:00, 13:45, 19:00 and 20:45).
Iglesia de la Virgen del Faro
The Church of Our Lady of the Lighthouse, Santander, was founded in 1969 and is the work of the architect Jaime Carceller. The temple has a great architectural singularity, as its concrete vault serves as a roof.
In 1990 the church was closed because of problems in its structure and was reopened in 2009. Inside the temple, the figure of the crucified Christ is housed, the work of the sculptor Jesus Otero.
Mass times: No Mass on Mondays. Tuesday to Thursday (19:00) and public holidays (11:00).
Iglesia de Nuestra Señora de la Visitación
The Church of Our Lady of Visitation is located in Calle Camilo Alonso Vega, Santander. It is a 19th-century neo-Gothic-style temple, which is attached to the convent of the same name. The construction is the work of the architect Joaquín Rucoba.
Its structure consists of a single nave and features a five-arched portico façade. The temple has three bell towers, one main and two smaller ones, located on the sides.
Mass times: Working (9:30 and 19:30), Eves (19:30) and Public Holidays (9:30, 11:00, 12:30 and 19:30).
Iglesia de San Francisco
The Church of San Francisco is located in the city of Santander. The temple was built in the middle of the 20th century and the work was directed by Javier González Riancho.
Its façade consists of a classic portico that is separated from it with a balustrade supported by columns with Doric capitals and a triangular pediment, located in the upper body, decorated with pinnacles. The church features a tower with an octagonal vaulted bell tower.
Mass Hours: Working (9:30, 12:00 and 19:30), Eve (19:30) and Public Holidays (9:30, 11:30, 12:30 and 19:30).
Iglesia de Santa Lucía
The Church of Santa Lucia, in Santander, is a temple built by A. Zabaleta in 1868. The construction has an eclectic neo-Renaissance style and was declared a site of Cultural Interest in 1987.
Its structure consists of a rectangular floor plan of a single nave and side chapels. These open in arcades resting on pilasters. Its monumental portico stands out, accessed by a wide staircase in which large Ionian columns are observed.
Inside the temple works such as the carving of the Virgin with the Child, in Gothic style, a painting of St. Lucia and a Virgin of victories are all preserved.
Mass times: Working days (9:30, 12:00 and 20:00), eves (12:00 and 20:00) and holy days
(9:00, 11:00, 12:00, 13:00 and 18:45).
Museo Marítimo del Cantábrico
The Cantabrian Maritime Museum is located in Calle San Martín de Abajo, Santander. Its origin dates back to the creation of the Museum-Aquarium, promoted by Augusto González de Linares, in 1886. However, the museum has been located in the current location since 1981.
The museum space has four sections. The first, dedicated to marine biology and aquariums, which attests to its origins, another focused on fishing ethnography. A third section specialized in maritime history and a fourth focused on shipbuilding and navigation techniques.
Hours: Closes on Mondays. From 1 May to 30 September, Tuesday to Sunday (from 10:00 to 19:30). From October 1st to April 30th (10:00-18:00).
Admission: 8 euros.
Jardines de Piquío
The Piquío Gardens are located in the Plaza de las Brisas, Santander. It is one of the most beautiful green spaces in the capital, designed by the architect Ramiro Sainz Martínez, in 1925.
The gardens have an area of approximately 7000 square metres. Within them, you can contemplate various tree species, such as eucalyptus trees, palm trees, and cassava, among others. From the gardens, located on a hill, you can enjoy incredible views of the Sardinero beach.
Locomotoras de Peñacastillo y Revilla
The Peñacastillo and Revilla locomotives are to be found in the Cantabrian Railway Museum, founded by the Association of Friends of the Railway of Cantabria. The two pieces were the work of Krauss.
Specifically, the Peñacastillo locomotive was built in Germany in 1912 and is of type 030T. The Revilla locomotive dates back to 1907 and was also built in Germany, being of the 020WT type.
Mercado del Este
The Eastern Market in Santander was built between 1839 and 1842, although in 2000, it was demolished and rebuilt, retaining few original elements. The building occupies two of the city’s Ensanche blocks. In 1986, it was declared a site of Cultural Interest.
The space is considered one of the first examples of galleries built for commercial purposes, with a network of quadricular tracks as covered streets. Currently, it is home to several businesses in the services sector and the Museum of Prehistory and Archaeology of Cantabria.
Hours: Open daily. Monday to Saturday (11:00 to 13:00 and 18:00 to 21:00) and
holidays (from 11:00 to 13:00).
Museo de Prehistoria y Arqueología
The Museum of Prehistory and Archaeology is based on the ground floor of the Eastern Market in the Cantabrian capital. The museum space has an area of almost 2,000 square metres and was declared as a site of Cultural Interest.
The museum houses an exhibition explaining the different ways of life in prehistoric times and the history of Cantabria.
Hours: Closes on Mondays. From 1 June to 30 September, Tuesday to Sunday (10:00 to 14:00 and 17:00 to 19:30). From 1 October to 31 May, Tuesday to Sunday (10:00 to 14:00 and 17:00 to 19:30).
Guided tour schedule: Tuesday to Saturday (10:30, 12:30, 17:15 and 18:00) and Sundays (10:30 and 12:30).
Museo de Arte Moderno
The Santander Museum of Modern Art (MAS) was founded in 1908. It was originally a generalist museum and then became a regional museum. Today it is a museum specializing in modern and contemporary art, with international projection.
The museum space has a permanent exhibition, in which vibrant works, sculptures, paintings, videos, among other specialities, and with a large number of temporary exhibitions that change throughout the year.
Hours: Closes on Mondays. Tuesday to Saturday (10:00 to 13:30 and 17:30 to 21:00), Sundays and public holidays (11:00 to 13:30).
Centro de Interpretación de la Muralla
The City Wall Interpretation Centre shows the last section of the old city walls of Santander. In the centre the evolution of Santander is explained through the archaeological remains that were found in the area: sloping streets, along with structures of ancient towers and ceramics.
Hours: Closes on Mondays. Tuesday (19:00), Wednesday to Saturday (11:00, 12:00 and 19:00) and Sundays (11:00 and 12:00).
Palacio de la Riva
Riva Palace is located in the city of Santander and is declared a Property of Cultural Interest. The construction is composed of a tower, the walls and the monument of the noble house.
In the mid-16th century, Fernando de la Riva renovated the building by attaching the medieval tower to a two-story body with a façade with a portico of two segmental arches, separated by a column decorated with a Corinthian capital. It is currently the headquarters of the Santander Creative Foundation.
Playa del Sardinero
The Sardinero Beach in Santander, is the best known and busiest of the Community of Cantabria, with a Blue Flag and a multitude of services. The beach has a length of approximately 330 metres and is considered an urban beach.
Castillo de la Corbanera
The Corbanera Castle in Santander is a fortification built in 1847, with the aim of fighting and protecting the city from the Carlist Wars.
The building consists of the main tower, located in the centre, surrounded by a circular wall, which is supported by four towers located in each of the cardinal points. The wall is 50 metres in diameter and was constructed of masonry with mortar.