Day 7 – 19 kms. 8.30am start, 12 midday stop-off for nearly an hour, arriving at 3.45pm.

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Today I walked with Marie Noelle from the Vendée, France. I am beginning to dream in French!
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Luckily we left the bus road behind early in the morning.
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Mountains and the village of Cañaveral ahead where we stopped for morning coffee and to air our feet
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It was hot and sunny all day, and we walked between drystone walls.
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We passed this on the way out of the town, going steeply uphill. I love the ‘noble’ part.
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Sometimes we could see the Camino sign but could not get across the barrier.
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The path winding through the vegetation to our destination, Grimaldo. What views!
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Idyllic streams tumbling through the landscape.
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A white Chapel with idiosyncratic orange-tiled roof typical of the Extremadura region. We went slightly off course here, mistaking the gentleman’s shouts to redirect us for a cow giving birth! (true)
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The camino in this region passes through Holm Oak woods and the March sunshine delights, lighting up one of the many pools. There were tadpoles in one of them.
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Wild flower meadows and what might be the Sierra Nevada.
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Not in order: this is the wonderful Embalse de Alcántara which we left at 8am. The very early morning light turned the still water pink, which I have never seen before and did not get on camera. This was a little later as we climbed up behind the hostel and away.
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Ghostly grasses surrounding this natural pool.
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Much of the area is fenced off to stop hunting.
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The first time I had seen pine trees since leaving Mérida a week ago.
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Bleached but soft stone colours acting as a lovely backdrop for the flowers – new species appear every day. Today’s were bluebells. 
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A hump-backed Roman bridge.

The albergue at Grimaldo was easy to find by following the yellow arrows – 1km from the camino. It was full by the evening – one toilet between 15 of us – causing queues evening and morning. It is Donativo ie you pay what you want or think it is worth. Clean and with a small kitchen with fridge and microwave, there is no stamp on my credential. The two cafés were opposite and next door – both, as ever, run by friendly and helpful people and serving good food and wine. The one next door opened at 8am for breakfast for us because we guaranteed 10 plus people.

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