The walk from Ponferrada to Villafranca or in my case Pereje is mainly along main roads and highways. As a plus I departed from Ponferrada with 7 nice stiches in a line – bedbugs! But I guess it’s similar to life: At some points it can only get better…
I left Ponferrada alone as John decided to take a bus to Triacastela this day to relax his achilles.
This part of the road actually isn’t that nice as it is leading along the main street and you are barely leaving the asphalt which is killing your feet. Asphalt is the worst to walk on in long distance walks. In the beginning poppy fiels are seaming the way though, creating an enormeously beautiful scenery.
I walked through several nice villages, taking breakfast in the closest village and another break to apply the suncream. So I usually walk fast but take many breaks to relax and do things.
I ran into Marc again shortly before Villafranca and soon after we met two Japanese women he had been walking with before. So this day I was walking in company.
Before Villafranca we were walking through a very picturesque landscape with vinyards and poppies on both sides of the street.
We decided not to stay in Villafranca. Rumy had to catch a bus in O Cebreiro the next day and I wasn’t very keen on staying in the city because I had been warned of bedbugs. A Swiss couple I had met in Burgos had told me to better leave out the city because they had had bedbugs in the albergues there every time and it had never improved during the last 5 years. To be fair though it should be said that none of my fellow pilgrims had problems there.
So we walked on to Pereje, a tiny little village with an albergue in the traditional building style of the region. This decision had been good! There were no big crouds in this albergue and we could end the day in silence, enjoying the sun, reading or writing diary.