Nejara to Santo Domingo de la Calzado – 20.9K

This entry is part 10 of 29 in the series Part 3: Puente la Reina to Astorga

Parador Santo Domingo (124€)* 

        

We head out of town and up a steep hill flanked by red cliffs.  Again we are amongst rolling vineyards.  The road levels off and then, at 5.7 kilometers, heads up into a small town, Onofra.  We stop for coffee and a little break.  We have 15 kilometers to go, and it is getting hot.  The road is flat for a long stretch and then climbs again… through an undulating landscape on into Santo Domingo de la Calzado.  We arrive at 3:00 PM, at the end of a long way in!  We are staying at the town’s Parador and it is fabulous.  (Paradors are upscale, government-run hotels in restored palaces, castles, town halls, and the like.)  Our room overlooks a square with a church on one side and the town on the other.  This Parador was once a hospital.  The town is named after Santo Domingo who was famous for his service to all things pilgrim… hospitals, roads, bridges, food, etc. The church is famed for its chickens.  Yes, chickens. According to legend, an innocent young pilgrim was hung for a crime he didn’t commit, then brought back to life… in a miracle attested by a pair of roasted chickens rising from a dinner plate and mightily crowing (long story).  Lots of medieval art; lots of gold.  We enjoy a glass of wine in the Parador’s lobby, the B+N, then walk around the town, bustling on this Saturday night.  We pass a cheerful procession bound for the christening of a beautiful little girl in a frilly dress.  Finally, it is 8:30 and we go to dinner in the Parador’s lovely dining room with very poor food (87€).  Oh well…

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