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  Link to Eroski Maps for 13 Stages of Camino Primitivo  
 

The  Camino Primitivo or Primitive Way  is one of the oldest pilgrim paths of the Camino de Santiago. It begins in the old Asturian capital of Oviedo and runs west to Lugo and then south to Santiago de Compostela joining the more popular Camino Frances or French Way in Melide for the last two days walking into Santiago de Compostela.

The Camino Primitivo is thought of as the "Original Way" because it is reportedly the path taken by the first reported pilgrim,Alfonso II of Asturias (c. 760 – 842), nicknamed the Chaste. The King left his capital, Oviedo, in the year 814 to travel to the present location of the city of Santiago de Compostela, at the time known as Mount Libredón. Alfonso built the original shrine to Saint James on the spot of the discovery. Until the city of León was established as both the capital of the Kingdom of Leon and the nexus of a safe route — the French Way — for pilgrims travelling across the Meseta, the Camino Primitivo remained the most frequented route for those going to Santiago for religious reasons.

The Camino Primitivo remains as a popular alternative path, which avoids most of the much heavier-travelled Camino Francés and the crowds of pilgrims there. Though incorporating a lot of climbing and descending, it allows hikers to enjoy a more stimulating journey with better views.

The route has been growing rapidly in popularity in recent years, with corresponding improvements to waymarking and to the provision of hostel accommodation for pilgrims. In 2018, 15,038 pilgrims, representing 4.6% of the total completing the Camino de Santiago and registering for a Compostela in that year, walked the Camino Primitivo. Most commenced their journey at Oviedo, with smaller numbers joining the trail at Lugo and at Grandas de Salime. The Primitivo is now the fourth most popular Camino route, behind the Francés, Portugués Central, and Norte.

Stage Statistics
(Figures based on www.douglasajohnson.com)

   
Km Hrs-Mins Gain Loss Max Min
1 Oviedo Grado 25.9 7H03 591 756 256 37
2 Grado Salas 21.4 6H25 756 584 365 42
3 Salas Tineo 19.9 6H32 823 419 792 244
4 Tineo Pola de Allande 27.9 8H05 951 1,069 914 532
5 Pola de Allande La Mesa 21.5 6H49 1,080 744 1,144 532
6 La Mesa Grandas de Salime 15.7 4H12 995 1,301 1,043 209
7 Grandas de Salime Fonsagrada 25.6 8H19 884 496 1,113 563
8 Fonsagrada O Cádavo 24.5 6H32 878 1,112 1,025 670
9 O Cádavo Lugo 30.8 8H48 569 829 867 399
10 Lugo San Romao de Retorta 18.8 6H09 412 275 598 367
11 San Romao de Retorta Melide 30.4 9H22 520 684 708 426
  Total 262.4   9,283 8,577    
 
  Hospitales Altenative              
4b Borres Puerto del Palo 15.5 6H00 824 308 1,217 610
 
 

 

Actual Garmin GPS Data

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