We were seven in our dormitory and after a night dominated by a chorus of snoring it was a relief to be up and out early. We headed out of the village and cross country. We got to see the sunrise, hear the birds chorus and beautiful wild flowers everywhere.
First breakfast, yes I said first breakfast, was an hour into our walk at a small cafe in Povoa de Santa Iria, with some of our Camino family. It was a popular spot with local cycle clubs and a parade of lycra-clad cyclists came and went as we sat and had coffee and pastries (or banana sandwiches in my case).
The next leg of the journey was along the boardwalk through a nature reserve, beside the Tagus River. It was peaceful except for the Saturday morning walkers and joggers and the sound of the rather strong breeze blowing through the tall reeds.
Another break; second breakfast! And onward, initially through more peaceful countryside until we ended up on a busy main road for a few kilometers until we returned to a dedicated walking path all the way to Vila Franca de Xira our stop for tonight.
There was a medieval festival on in the town, the colourful stalls, costumes, music, dancers, food and a local tipple, ginjinha, a cherry liquor in chocolate cups was just what we needed at end of a tiring day. We window shopped at the market, we would have loved to buy but having to carry your belongings on your back focuses the mind and makes you realize how little we actually need.
Another great day with a big day ahead of us tomorrow.