Day 2 - Torre de la Reina - El Real de la Jara

north to El Real de la Jara Camino Santiago marker
On the road north to El Real de la Jara
One of the rare Camino markers
Castle in Spain El Real castle
Closer view of the castle on the road
Castle at El Real de la Jara

I must confess that el Real de la Jara was the one place on the entire trip that I had problems finding a hotel. As one web site says " There is no refuge or even a hostal here but if you find the house number 70 on the Calle Real then the very friendly lady, Conche, will help you out." However another says ". Once in El Real, there's a new albergue with 8 beds on Calle Real." In the end I chickened out, and got picked up for the night and then dropped back here the following morning. If you do not have that option, then research the El Real options.

Map  Torre de la Reina to El Real de la Jara

I followed a route from Torre de la Reina, via country roads to Burguillos (16 km from start). There were a few Spanish cyclists out training on this section, as I was still near Seville.

There turned out to be 72 km of riding and nearly 1000 metre of climbing on this first real day on the road, so it is a fair workout to the untrained body, but nevertheless perfectly doable, if leaving one a bit saddle sore and wearly at the end of the day.

A futher 13 km to Castilblanco, then on to Almaden which is yet another 29 km. I stopped to get a sello at the Guardia Civil, where I only just caught them as they were closing for lunch, and would remain closed for the next 3 hours. This part of Spain has nothing between the towns, and by nothing I mean nothing - not a village, not even a house, and you will see very few people. So you see the problem if you are expecting to get sellos en-route. It made me decide to stick to one sello a day, and to get that from the hotel on arrival.

The Guardia Civil were amused at my trip, and even more amused when I asked them if it was far to Santiago de Compostela. They tactfully suggested that my estimate of 12 days was on the optimistic side. Mind you the officers did look well fed, and probably did not do too much cycling themselves.

Another 14 km saw me roll into El Real de la Jara. This is a small Spanish town with the old castle set high on the hill above it. I had never realised before how many castles Spain possessed, and in what remarkable state of preservation most of them are in.

Camino de Santiago - Via de la Plata Map of my route

Day 3 Day 3 of my route