Day 28-29 Road Trip: Santiago de Compostela + Family Camping As Cancelas

One of us (parents) is religious and it’s the job of the other to support that one and raise the kids together in open manners of the soul and the self. I suppose that’s co-existence. And so here we are finally in Santiago de Compostela–the end point of all pilgrimage routes of the Camino de Santiago whose seashell signs we had seen almost everywhere we had driven in France and Spain on our family camping road trips. Here’s some pictures of our visit to Santiago de Compostela along with a quick review of Camping As Cancelas.

Pilgrims rest in the open square in front of the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela
Why seashell? As the legend goes, James the disciple of Jesus was killed in Jerusalem and his followers brought his body back to Spain. Somewhere off the coast of Galicia, the ship carrying the body was shipwrecked. His body later came up covered with seashells. It was allegedly well-preserved.

Forty-something years after the death of Jesus, his disciple James apparently ended up here to spread the gospel and therefore began the uphill battle of Christianization of the Iberian peninsula. Supposedly. His remains are within the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela. Again, supposedly. By the way, he is one of the Catholic Saints.

“Tata, what is this?”, Kaj asks of the concha/seashell that marks the Camino de Santiago. Karol and Mama, up ahead.
Walking, roaming…our own way.

Before Covid-19 showed us what Mother Nature can do with its little proverbial sneeze, we had planned on walking a little segment of the Camino road with the kids, just to show them a way of life and may be find a different way for our family life.

Christ across from the cathedral of Santiago de Compostela–a UNESCO world heritage city; also the capital of the Galicia region of Spain.
Seashell marks the end point of the Camino de Santiago route for many a pilgrims… and roamers alike.
We made it!
The uncrowded open square where long-term pilgrims or daytime roamers rest before the church that James, the disciple of Jesus, founded 40-some years after the death of his friend.
The supposed remains of Saint James, wrapped in gold and silver and barred by an iron gate, underneath the Cathedral.
Mama sharing lessons of love and faith with the kids within the church surrounded by all its majesty.
The boys, exploring the halls of the grand cathedral in silence
Grandness of the church, from the floor to the ceiling.
“These [feet] are made for walking. And that’s just what I’ll do!” (paraphrasing Nancy Sinatra),
Remembering our dead in every church.
Fountain of the Horses (Fonte dos caballos in Gallego) historical landmark.
The near empty casco historico (historic center) of Santiago de Compostela makes it a more pleasant (less touristy) visit.
Family-friendly, kid-approved stop: Just outside the historic center is this huge16th century park called Parque da Alameda with lots of open and green space, monuments and playgrounds.
Saint James? Jesus? Atlas Shrugged. . . atop the Foundation Eugenio Granell.
Family-friendly, kid-approved playground at the Alameda Park (Parque da Alameda).

Where to stay in santiago de Compostela? save money. go Camping As Cancelas

Camping As Cancelas is the only campsite in Santiago de Compostela, Spain. It is a little less than 3 kilometers walk to the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela or a 15-minute bus ride. This campground is kid-approved and family-friendly for its play areas, swimming pool and proximity to the city center.

NOTE: We are on the road. So, we’ll fill this in later and please excuse the typos.

In case you’re wondering. . . No, we have not received any form of compensation or freebies or anything at all for reviewing or mentioning this or any others on our blog.  We just do it for the fun of it. 

A ball park, swimming pool and playground. . . all in one compact space.

TO DO: What’s to see/do nearby? Well, Santiago de Compostela–the capital of Galicia. Apart from the Cathedral and the historic center with so many things to do (give it at least 1 day for a visit), there are also day trips that you can do to the “end of land”–Fisterra, the many beaches on rugged coastlines, and the Tower of Hercules–all within about 1 to 1.5-hour drive.

Kids’ at play with new friends.

What we like about this place? The fenced-in ball park where the boys played football, basketball, etc. . . for hours.

What we don’t like about this camp site?  A bit of a steep rough road uphill to the pitches.

ACCESS. The sign for the camp is a bit small. Slow down and spot the sign for “A Grellla Braseria” (restaurant next door).

The reception at Camping As Cancelas. This is a 365-day campsite with the family living on the grounds so the reception is open late (or at least until the restaurant closes).

SHADE. Plenty of shade from fully grown trees around pitches. A couple of sections on the right as you go uphill is even almost sunblocked by trees (for you Vampires out there).

PITCH. How’s the pitch? Compact ground, not soft but NO problem sinking tent pegs. Here in Spain, we begin to see less grass and more ground/dirt on the pitches. It’s big enough to fit a 3-person tent, a car and a more for your eating and playing areas. During our visit we could take as much space as we wanted around us since it was the end of season and there were very few visitors.

Plenty of space at Camping As Cancelas in Santiago de Compostela, Spain during our visit. We were one of a few longer-term stays. Many were overnight stayers.

Privacy hedges. Only at the outer borders. Not much between pitches.

Plenty of space. Social distancing at this campsite was not a problem.

PLAY. A ball park, swimming pool and playground. . . all in one compact space.

PRICE. Higher than standard at 36.00 euros (including tax) for a family of 4 (2 kids–1 under 5), 3-person tent WITH electricity during end of summer season (early September). But the proximity to the city center and the kid-approved amenities make it acceptable.

There are a couple of pitches where you can look through the fence to check on your kids. A plus!!!

SANITARY FACILITIES. Small spaces but clean with toilet paper. One entrance to each men/women restroom.

Small space but clean dishwashing and laundry-hand-washing areas at Camping As Cancelas, Spain.
For washing clothes; dishwashing on the other side, same area, at Camping As Cancelas, Spain.
Coronavirus/Covid-19 mode of operations at Camping As Cancelas, Spain.

DINE/DRINKS. There’s a bar and a big restaurant next to the reception, with outdoor and indoor seating … but we’re too poor to try it.

The bar during coronavirus summer at Camping As Cancelas, Spain. Outdoor seating available.
Suffiently clean bathroom at Camping As Cancelas, Spain.
Showers with warm water as much as you want.
Tight space but sufficent shower stalls at Camping As Cancelas, Spain.
Turn left after the yellow sign and the pedestrian walkway.

So, the next time you’re planning your vacation, try somethimg different. GO CAMPING! Your kids would love it.

Next stop: The Tower of Hercules? What!!??? All the way up here?

Some perimeter lighting. Our pitch at night at Camping As Cancelas, Spain.

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