Camino Mozárabe – day 13 – Alcaracejos to Hinojosa del Duque – 23.2 km

A leisurely 08:00 am start to this relatively short day. The first couple of hundred metres were on the road, although we didn’t follow the prescribed route because that would have meant doubling back into the village. We picked up the Camino within ten minutes. We were first of all walking through working farms with all the pungent smells that you might expect to find around a dairy farm. The tracks were wide and sandy and very comfortable to walk on. The cows were eating their breakfast as we passed and took very little notice of s couple of pilgrims walking by. image We came upon the village of Villanueva del Duque after just 4 km where I spied a stork at home atop the church tower. A short distance outside the village I became caught up in a traffic jam, and one of the commuters stuck her tongue out at me – how rude! Mind you, I did bleat back at her. image Next along the track I saw some horses, appearing very well looked after, the greys’ coats were shining silver, obviously recently groomed. I have seen a lot of hoof prints on the tracks over the last few days, but haven’t come across anyone riding as yet. image There were a few water features to ford, but without any mishap. The lush green meadows that surrounded us were tinged with red, or purple or yellow, changing colour one after the other. The trees were holm oak again and the land surrounding them was often cultivated with a cereal crop. image image We passed free range chickens, goats and beautiful cows. And then we came across the escapees – a group of ten little squealers who had crept under the farm gate onto the track to forage on forbidden fruit, but as soon as they saw us they turned tail, kicked their heels and headed back to mum. George thought it was hilarious, and I caught the scene just at the right time. image Although the tracks were being kind to us, my feet were rather tender from yesterday’s efforts and I made fairly slow progress, but that meant I had all the more time to appreciate the beautiful surroundings and the fabulous sky. image image We took a break in the second village we passed through, Fuente la Lancha. George was hoping for a coffee, but the bars were closed so we sat in the church square and I ate the remainder of my supply of nuts. The next stop was towards the end of our walk at a ‘zona recreativa’ an area with children’s playground and picnic benches. We then had a couple of hundred metres on the road and a long walk behind an industrial area until we reached the outskirts of this large town. The first area we came to was a bit dubious, obviously a very poor area, but a guy struck up a conversation about our journey. As we neared the centre of town it seemed very strange – just like another ghost town. All the shops were closed and very few people were around. After a long walk towards the church square I could suddenly see why the town was so quiet – everyone was gathered in the square to witness the parade of the town bands and the icon of the Virgin saint emerging from the church on the shoulders of the chosen few. But for a few moments it felt as though the band was playing and the bells were ringing to welcome us to town (yeah, right!) image It was all very nice to see, but it gave us a problem. We needed to contact the townhall or the local police to get a key for the municipal albergue, but everything was locked up for the fiesta. The sounds from the bands, the church bells tolling non-stop and the rockets being fired was deafening and I knew it was not a good time to make a phone call. So I patiently waited for the parade to move on before phoning the police. The guy who answered was obviously at the business end of the parade with all the noise going on at the other end of the phone, but I managed to tell him what I wanted and he told me he would come. The trouble was, I didn’t know when – I didn’t expect for a moment that he would leave his parade duties to tend to a couple of pilgrims and we settled on a bench to wait for who knows how long. But luckily, it was less than 30 minutes before we saw a policeman, who waved out to us while he was doing his duties, and soon came over and showed us to the Albergue which was just around the corner. It is a lovely, shiny, newly decorated albergue with four sets of bunks, a nice bathroom, a meeting type room with microwave and a reception area with a sofa. Very nice. image All the townspeople are dressed in their very best, all looking extremely smart and as soon as the icon was returned to the church they piled into the bars surrounding the square to eat and drink. Don’t the spanish know how to enjoy themselves en masse? I love to watch them socialising like this. I have just eaten a good lunch of loin of pork and salad, and checked that the bar will be open again this evening, as there are no shops open to buy food for self catering. No wifi here though, so I shall have to visit the other bar in the hope, and it will be necessary to have another drink whilst I am there – who said a pilgrim’s life was uncomplicated? ……well, fortunately a good wifi signal is available in the other bar and food is served, so here we are again. This lovely town is the last stop over in Andalucia, tomorrow we cross into the province of Badajoz, in Extremadura. Because it is fiesta time, not only are no shops open today, but they will not be open until too late for us in the morning. However the waiter has just told us that the bar will be open at 06:30 tomorrow and we can order some bocadillos, which is very good because we have 31 km to travel with no shops between here and there. image Distance according to wikiloc (my own recording) 23.2km, mapmywalk 24.9km, Fitbit recorded steps 30,867

Accumulated elevation uphill 144 metres Accumulated elevation downhill 201 metres

Total distance walked 342.2 km, average 26.3 km per day

Today’s spend – lunch and drink 6.30€, tinto verano 1.20€, dinner and drink 8.90€.  Spend for the day 23.40€

Thirteen days total spend 329.40€

About magwood

Trepidatious Traveller - camino blog is about preparing for and walking the Camino de Santiago. Many future pilgrims have found the blog useful and inspiring, and many who have no plans to walk the camino have simply enjoyed the dialogue
This entry was posted in Camino de Santiago de Compostela, Camino Mozarabe and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

21 Responses to Camino Mozárabe – day 13 – Alcaracejos to Hinojosa del Duque – 23.2 km

  1. A pilgrim’s walk is never without some barriers. Still, you are doing well. Nice long post. It would take me forever to load just the pictures. Lovely ones. The elongated shadows at the beginning are especially lovely and all the fields and flowers and four-legged rascals. 😀

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Diane peterson says:

    Enjoying your journal which covers so much n full of good info. Planning to do camino from Pamploma in sept to Santiago.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Jo Bryant says:

    What a great post. I loved the image of the red poppies. With ANZAC Day approaching here it really touched me.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. It sounds like a great day!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. mary lynch says:

    Your photos reminded me of Ireland Maggie. Green grass and animals in the fields. I miss that in Andalucia. Compared to other days you ate like a queen yesterday, good to see. Buen camino.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Keith Rocks says:

    Amusing dialogue today and lovely pictures Maggie

    Liked by 1 person

  7. gerarddamato says:

    The whole thing sounds idealic. Love it, specialy the poppies!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Katherine Paterson says:

    What a lovely post Maggie, it would seem that you have recovered well from your earlier marathon! Good luck for tomorrow. I miss cows here in Competa!

    Liked by 1 person

    • magwood says:

      I’m still waiting to see the cow that we are warned about on leaving Algorrobo Katherine. It must be very well contained – no sight of it in the last five years!


  9. Irish Sue says:

    Lovely to see the odd photo of you and George in your posts Maggie. I am still so full of admiration – especially when I see the size of your packs! I promise to buy you a glass of perfect white wine when you get home… It will be so well deserved. Keep up the spirits and the wonderful photos. I especially loved the wild life. Your run away pigs are my favourite so far – your very own grand national! Wishing you well as always. Irish Sue xxx

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Anja says:

    How nice to reed your blog. I´m just planning to walk the “Via de la Plata” from Seville to Santiago de Compostela but I have to find a guide book from the Starting time is in may and I´m walking alone, about 7 weeks. Your photos and everything you are writhing is very interesting.
    Waiting for moor news. Good luck!

    Liked by 1 person

    • magwood says:

      Thank you Anja. I’m haven’t purchased a guidebook for this camino, just downloaded lots of info. There is an app for the Via de la Plata by Melanie something – it has been well reviewed and I have downloaded it. What a pity we shall not be walking at the same time. I am looking forward to meeting more pilgrims when we hit the VdlP.


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