We all know where the Camino de Santiago ends. At Santiago de Compostela cathedral. In Galicia. Where the remains of the apostle Saint James lie buried. The start of the Way of St. James’ less clear. Some say it begins after setting off on your pilgramage. As in when you leave your home.
Meet Gran Canaria’s mini-me version. The photo you see is a recently-erected sign. The tourist board now market the Camino de Santiago as a coast-to-coast trek. From Maspalomas in the south. To Galdár in the north-west. Strictly speaking, though, it connects one of the island’s holiest churches in San Bartolomé de Tirajana. To another, in Galdár. Despite the new signs, pilgrims have progressed this way for aeons. Minus the extra day’s hike from Maspalomas.
A continent in miniature
Traditionally, Gran Canaria’s tourist board highlighted the south of the island as hot and arid. Whilst labelling the north colder and greener. They promoted the island as “a miniature continent”. Something which fellow Independent freelancer Ben Lerwill covers in Feet-first into Gran Canaria.
Camino de Santiago, Tunte and beyond
When I followed the Camino de Santiago, my finishing point was San Bartolomé de Tirajana. I joined the CdS after reaching El Garañon from my Tejeda start. It was a path I soon bonded with. Above all on the stairway to heaven in reverse. Which I hit upon as I began my descent to SBdT. AKA Tunte. Tunte being the pre-Spanish name for this town.
Getting my head down
My final destination was the Hacienda del Molino, a rural hotel dissed and dismissed on TripAdvisor. However, the owner was charm personified and the full dinner just what I needed after a full day’s walking. Simultaneously sated and knackered, I slept well that night.