We all decide to do the camino for different reasons and hope to come back home with something new....something learned. One thing we do not usually think we will learn about is Spanish culture. Its an amazing country and fascinating culture.
After spending two months in Spain, we would like to share a few things we learned along the way about Spanish culture during the camino and in the bigger cities:
- Food is delicious and unique! At some point we will write a whole section about what you need to eat and how it varies by region. For now, below please find the top four must eat foods!
- Eat all sorts of pinchos in Pamplona. (some are vegetarian friendly).
- Eat Morcilla in Burgos!
- Eat Pulpo Gallego in Galicia (Santiago de Compostela had the best!)
- Eat Paletilla de Cordero! (as soon as you find it)
- When do they eat? Breakfast is usually light i.e pastries, coffee and zumo (juice) and starts around 6am. Lunch is after 2 p.m. (Everything is closed between 2 and 5pm. Specially in the smaller towns) and dinner anytime after 8 p.m.
- If you are hungry in between you can find some tapas/pinchos. In larger cities you will find more options in between these hours. If you are going through small towns, make sure you prepare ahead of time.
- Wine….Well its Spain! No vino NO Camino!
- Siesta: Siestas are usually in between 2- 5 p.m. Stores and restaurants usually close in between these hours specially in smaller towns. This is helpful to know when you are out and about and looking for something to eat or buy. Make sure to prepare ahead of time.
- Talkative: Spanish people love to talk and tell you their stories. You will learn a lot from them 🙂
- Sundays closed: In smaller towns most grocery stores, shops and restaurants will be closed on Sundays. Some towns will close on Mondays as well.
- Proud heritage but also very divided by region. Spain has a lot of history and each region is very proud of its heritage. You will notice this along the camino with varied food traditions, different dialects and foods along the way from the Basque region to La Rioja, Castilla y Leon and Galicia.