10/10/12 Azurara to Fao, 21.5km
Today started out well, until I crossed the bridge into Vila do Conde. Then I lost the yellow arrows and was sent the wrong way by a well-meaning woman. She thought I was trying to reconnect with the Caminho Central, which is the most common route. Eventually I found the way again, not before finding a Franciscan monastery and getting completely turned around!
This stretch involved a lot of town walking before eventually doing more coastal walking. There was a good mixture of wooden boardwalks (which I love) and "senda" walking. The most fun part of the day was when the trail left a campground and I ended up at a four way intersection with no idea where to go. A car came along and pointed me in the right direction. I kept walking through essentially local farmland. At some point, I reconnected with the Caminho Orla Litoral and began a long 2km slog down a street full of seafood restaurants. I wanted to stop and eat but I really wanted to get to the hostel in Fao.
The youth hostels in Portugal offer a 10% discount to pilgrims with a credential and don't require you to be a member. For 9,90€ I had a bed and breakfast in the morning. The hostel was pretty dead and I had a 4-bed bunk room to myself. There were a few other people, no pilgrims, though. I spent the evening relaxing and snacking on some food I was able to buy at a local store.