Camino Day 20


The outskirts of Leon were grim -suburban sprawl and high rise monotony amid dual carriageways and lots of traffic.

Eventually the Camino left the edge of the main road to Astorga and filtered into the countryside along red earth tracks.

The natural vegetation of this most westerly part of the meseta was pine forests and scrubland with small cultivated fields of vegetables and stubble. We saw livestock outside for the first time, cattle in fields and sheep being herded through towns and over ancient bridges.

The descent into Astorga was wonderful, the twin towers of the cathedral pierced the sky leaving you oblivious to the rest of the town below.

On closer inspection, the main facade of the cathedral was sandstone that was intricately sculptured and glowed in the sunlight.

Next to the cathedral was a palace that Gaudi had designed, a fairy-tale-like building made of granite with pointed turrets of slate. Although it was built for his friend the bishop, the interior reminded us of the Moorish buildings of Andalucia.

Cave-like dwellings on outskirts of Leon
Medieval bridge at Hospital de Orbigo
We met Paul from Atlanta
Astorga cathedral
Gaudi palace
A ghoulish sculpture near the cathedral – capirote hoods are worn by those repenting their sins
We are not amused

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