From Aviles to Muros de Nalon, Camino del Norte stage no. 19




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Basic Details

  • Starting point: Palacio de Valdecarzana, Avilles (city center).
  • Ending point: Iglesia de Santa Maria de Muros de Nalon (there are two pilgrim albergues in Muros de Nalon)
  • Availability of alternative routes: Yes. There is a coastal route available, and while it isn’t the most beautiful part of the Northern coast of Spain (and there aren’t any super spectacular beaches), it isn’t a bad stretch, and following it you will avoid a lot of asphalt walking.
  • Distance: Official Camino route: 23 km (download GPS here). Alternative coastal route: 30 km (download GPS here).
  • Elevation difference: Official Camino: +590m, – 480m, Alternative coastal route: +970m, -860m
  • Link to online map: Official Camino route: here. Alternative coastal route: here.
  • Difficulty score: Official Camino route: 3/5. Alternative coastal route: 4/5.
  • Beauty score: Official Camino route: 3/5. Alternative coastal route: 4/5.
  • Terrain/asphalt: Official Camino route: 25%/75%, Alternative coastal route: 40%/60%.
  • Next stage: Camino del Norte, stage no. 20, Muros de Nalon – Santa Marina.
  • Previous stage: Camino del Norte, stage no. 18, Gijon – Aviles.


Elevation profile for the routes

– Official Camino route, as you can see there are quite a few hills and downhills. Definitely not as easy stage as it may seem when one looks only at the total elevation gain, or considers it by a relatively short distance of 23 kilometers.

– Alternative Camino route, the coastal trail is really “eventful”, with plenty of short yet steep climbs and descents. At least the climbs lead to some nice viewpoints :)…


Advanced info about the stage

  • Trail marking: There are a few tricky parts.
    • First is the exit of the city of Aviles, since the camino doesn’t really follow any straight line in the city, but traverses through various small streets instead. Easy to make a wrong turn, so better help yourself with GPS.
    • Second part is before Salinas, where the authorities have changed the Camino route a couple of years ago (to the better since there is less asphalt walking now). On almost all maps and Camino apps they still show the old route through Salinas. But I suggest you to follow the yellow arrows instead, that will take you through some small trails and routes, avoiding Salinas altogether, and connecting back with the “old” Camino in Piedras Blancas.
    • The last one is on the roundabout in Soto del Barco, a place where most pilgrims stop for a lunch in one of the two restaurants that are right at the roundabout. The Camino takes a sharp right turn here, following a small route that will eventually take you down to the bridge over the river Nalon.
  • Alternative route information: The route isn’t marked, except of some parts that are marked rather poorly. In order to connect to the coastal route you need to take the old Camino route to Salinas and connect to the coast there. You will experience a bit of all on this coastal trail–a really long beach walk (along the beach that isn’t touristic), some walk on gravel routes on the coast, and also a bit of road walking. Many small climbs and descents, as you can see on the elevation profile above. The navigation isn’t easy, and if you decide to take this coastal route, I highly recommend you downloading our GPS file and follow it on your favorite device, to not get lost. It will take you all the way from Aviles to Muros, following the coastal variant. There are several interesting spots on the alternative route worth mentioning:
    • The mining museum, open every day except Monday. A nice museum that maps the rich mining history of this zone of the Spanish coast (you will pass by some abandoned mining buildings as well). If you book upfront, you will get a visit of an old mine as a part of the excursion.
    • Playa de Bahias, isolated and silent beach, typically visited only by locals, with specific beauty and darker color of sand.
    • Mirador de Vidrias, a beautiful viewpoint with beaches and rock formations in sight. A 300 meters detour worth making.
    • Playon de Bayas – Over 3 km long walk on a beach with black sands, popular among dog lovers, and has some nice rock formations too…
  • Natural places worth seeing: Besides all the places I mentioned in the previous section (belonging to the alternative coastal route), there isn’t really anything worth a special mention on the official Camino. It doesn’t mean that the way is ugly–for sure not, and there are nice parts on it, just there’s nothing worth a special mention :). However, once you’re already in Muros de Nalon and drop your backpack in one of the hostels, I strongly recommend you walking the “Senda de los Miradores”, the scenic footpath on the coast of Muros de Nalon, with an option to descent to some beautiful beaches for a swim or just for a quiet meditation. You do not need to walk the entire distance–if you do not feel like it. There are several exit points that will take you back to the center of Muros de Nalon, along small paved roads with minimum traffic.
  • Historical, architectural, and culinary places worth seeing:
    • Center of Aviles, with some nice fountains and historical buildings, and all in all a good vibe. Aviles isn’t nowhere near as touristic as many other places on the coast you have passed by until now, hence it doesn’t get crowded even in the height of summer season. If you’re more on a quiet side when it comes to the vibe you’re seeking in the cities, you will love Aviles.
    • There are several nice small churches along the way (see the gallery below). Sadly they are all closed, so one cannot explore the beauty of the inside.
  • Camping/bivouac options on this stage: Much better than on the previous days… The coast here isn’t very touristic or patrolled by police regularly, hence you can always escape the camino trail and head a bit north to the coast to find some fitting spots. Descending to any of the beaches on the Coastal Trail near Muros de Nalon in the evening, nobody will really bother you if you decide to camp or bivouac there. For camping I especially recommend the Beach of Xan Xu, or Beach of Atalaya. Please note that both beaches are hard to reach, on a steep trail sometimes secured with ropes. However, exactly this makes them great for wild camping spots, since you can be sure police or anyone else won’t bother you there at night. Hence you can get your provisions in Muros (with several grocery stores) and then head to one of those beaches for wild camping. You have also two good options for organized camping on this stage:
    • Camping Bahinas, one of the most natural organized camping places on the entire coast of Asturias, camping as it once was, many years ago, when everybody came with a tent instead of a caravan :)… Good price, dog friendly, wonderful location, decently clean. The camping place is “only” 11 kilometers outside of Aviles, and actually some pilgrims with dogs walk here on the same day they reach Aviles, due to the lack of dog-friendly accommodation options in the zone of Gijon – Aviles. The camping is located on the alternative coastal route, if you follow the official camino, it is 3km detour.
    • Camping Cudillero, 4 km extra walk after Muros de Nalon, 600 meters from the Camino by shortest detour, but I recommend taking the coastal route from Muros instead (over a road that cars can use too, but it isn’t busy). The camping has mixed reviews and isn’t intended for pilgrims, but they accept dogs, there’s a pool and overall it is a nice location and an option, if you’re after organized camping places.
  • Dog friendly score: 3/5. Pretty much average when we talk about dog friendliness. Enough spots with shade, common proximity of sweet water (the dog can descent to refresh itself in one of the creeks or in the river Nalon). On the other hand lots of road walking, some parts relatively busy with cars (you cannot let your dog just running loose there). In Muros you have several hostels that accept dogs, which is obviously better than in most towns in this zone…
  • Special remarks: When all pilgrim hostels in Muros are full, local priest lets the pilgrims sleep under the covered porch of the church of Santa Maria, located right in the very city center of Muros de Nalon. You need some inflatable mattress or something of that sort to be comfortable, but you’re protected from the rain and in a proximity of all services (you can use the toilet in one of the nearby restaurants or the pilgrim hostel). Consult the owner of the albergue next to the church for more information on this option.


Accommodation options on today’s stage

* The infographic displays the number of pilgrim hostels (only pilgrims allowed), hostels (anyone allowed, shared rooms), and other accommodation options (hotels, pensions, etc, private rooms) in each point along the route, together with price range. For exact explanation of the pictograms we use check the explanations page. Below the infographic you will see our recommended picks (up to 3 pilgrim options and 1-2 “privacy” options, maximum five) for the stage, together with important information (but not too much info, just what you need :-)).


Recommended places to sleep along this stage

Pilgrim options:

  1. Albergue de Peregrinos San Martin de Laspra (km 6). Location and reviews on Google maps here. A nice donation-based pilgrim hostel with 12 beds. New people in charge from 2023, and so far the place has wonderful reviews across all pilgrim platforms. A great place to stay if you want to avoid Aviles, or if the local pilgrim albergue is full for the night. Closed on Mondays, other days check-in from 3pm to 10pm. Communal dinner at 7pm. Recommended way of making a reservation: phone call, +34 611 570 284.
  2. Albergue Buen Camino, San Esteban de Pravia (km 21, detour from the Camino). Location and reviews on Google maps here. 15 beds, 20 euro/night, dinner and breakfast for additional cost. Very clean and modern, has excellent reputation on all pilgrim platforms, including the food they offer. The detour isn’t too long, and it is worth making it for this place. Highly recommended. Best way to make a reservation: Phone call, +34 685 451 605 or +34 644 523 075.
  3. Albergue Camino de la Costa, Muros de Nalon (km 23). Location and reviews on Google maps here. While I would say that none of the three albergues in Muros de Nalon is particularly great, this is the best one from them. In terms of location, the hosts, and also decent facilities for guests. Prices start at 15 euro/night (extra charge for breakfast), there are 15 beds. On their profile on Spanish website they say reservation of a bed is obligatory, but it isn’t true, you can get a place also walking in. Anyway, if you want to make sure you’ll get the bed, make a reservation by phone, +34 636 580 365. Check in from noon to 8pm, closed from 4pm to 5pm.


Privacy/luxury options:

If you find any information on this page incorrect or outdated, or have a suggestion how to improve it for fellow pilgrims, please let us know. Thank you for helping the pilgrim community, and buen Camino 🙂
  1. Hotel Palacio de la Magdalena, Soto del Barco (km 18). Location and reviews on Google maps here. A beautiful 4 stars hotel, right on the Camino. Prices start from 75 euro/night. English speaking staff, spa on site, beautiful decoration. You cannot get wrong with this hotel. Check-in from 4 pm, recommended way of making a reservation:
  2. Hotel Globales Playa de Las Llanas, Muros de Nalon (km 23). Location and reviews on Google maps here. A lovely rustic hotel in Muros, close to both the beach and the city center. Very good reviews across all platforms. Not very frequented by pilgrims, but they are definitely welcome :). Prices change a lot during the year, but you can get a room from 70 euro/night (and more in high season). Check-in from 2 pm, recommended way of making a reservation:


Pictures from the stage

– Lonely horses are quite typical for this part of Spain. I wished he had company, but at least he was left to roam on a nice spot.

– One of a several beautiful chapels and small churches you will pass by on today’s walk.

– wide sandy/gravel roads make for roughly 2-3 kilometers on the stage from Aviles to Muros de Nalon.

– Beach “Playa Veneiro”, Muros de Nalon. Roughly 2 kilometers from the center of Muros de Nalon, it makes for a nice afternoon walk once you’ve already dropped your backpack in the albergue.

– Views from the trail “Senda de los Miradores“, which you can again make like a nice afternoon walk once you’ve already in Muros de Nalon. If you decide to make the entire circuit, from Muros to Muros, it is about 5 km long. You can also descend to some of the beaches that you can see from the amazing viewpoints.

– One of the beaches in the zone of Muros de Nalon

– The beach Playon de Bayas, alternative coastal route from Aviles to Muros.

– Another look at the beach Playon de Bayas, on an alternative route from Aviles to Muros de Nalon, along the coast. If you follow this path, you will walk on the beach. The entire distance of over 3 kilometers. It is a long beach :).

– View from one of the viewpoints on the alternative coastal route from Aviles to Muros de Nalon


Few tips at the end

  • The coastal zone of Muros de Nalon–the ending point of today’s stage, is really nice and it isn’t touristic. The coastal walk called “Senda de los Miradores”, which means something like “the footpath of the viewpoints” is definitely worth taking as an afternoon walk. If you still have some powers after today’s walk, I highly recommend giving it a try in the afternoon :).


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