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Where to Stay in Santiago de Compostela - Best Areas & Hotels
Where to Stay in Santiago de Compostela - Best Areas & Hotels

Where to Stay in Santiago de Compostela: Best Areas & Hotels

Wondering about the best areas to stay in Santiago? From the beautiful Centro Histórico to the lively Ensanche, these are the best districts and hotels in the city.
Wondering about the best areas to stay in Santiago? From the beautiful Centro Histórico to the lively Ensanche, these are the best districts and hotels in the city.

Settled in the 9th century around the alleged burial place of Saint James the Great, the origins of this Galician city are a mixture of history, mysticism, tradition, power struggles and what could well have been the most effective city tourism marketing campaign in the Middle Ages. The tomb of the apostle, its church and the town that grew up around it became one of the most important pilgrimage destinations in Christianity. If you have come to this article looking for the best areas to stay in Santiago de Compostela, you have come to the right place.

A millennium has passed since its peculiar foundation, and Santiago de Compostela has massively grown in importance and beauty. The capital of Galicia since 1982, this UNESCO World Heritage Site is one of the most visited places in Spain, famous for its impressive cathedral, its beautiful and well-preserved historic centre, its university, and the recently created complex of the Cidade da Cultura. Thanks to its status as a pilgrimage destination since medieval times, we could even call Santiago de Compostela the oldest tourist destination in Spain and, as such, it is home to a large number of accommodations for all tastes and budgets. In recent years, new boutique properties have opened all around the city, particularly in the Old Town.

Whether you’re heading to Santiago de Compostela as a pilgrim, a tourist, or while travelling northwestern Spain, keep reading this article to find out more about the best areas to stay in Santiago de Compostela.

Accommodation Options in Santiago de Compostela
The Best Areas to Stay in Santiago, Spain: A Summary

In a hurry? If you don’t have time or patience for the full article, here is a quick summary of our recommended districts to stay in Santiago de Compostela. Keep reading to find out more information about each of these areas.


What’s the Best Area to Stay in Santiago de Compostela, Spain?

Boasting medieval excellence, Santiago de Compostela's Old Town is the best area to stay in the Galician capital to enjoy its attractions and the best nightlife and food.
Boasting medieval architecture, Santiago de Compostela’s Old Town is the best area to stay in the Galician capital to enjoy its attractions and the best nightlife and food.

The best area to stay in Santiago de Compostela is the Old Town, especially for sightseeing or travellers on the Way of Saint James. The Old Town grew around the city’s famous cathedral and houses the city’s main attractions, including Praza do Obradoiro, the town hall, the Royal Hospital, the San Francisco convent and museums such as the Galician Center for Contemporary Art and the Pilgrimage Museum. This old central district is also home to some of the best-rated hotels in Santiago.

See all the available accommodation in the Old Town.

Best Hotels in Santiago Old Town


The Best Areas for Tourists in Santiago de Compostela

The area around the Cathedral of Santiago is highly recommended for tourists and pilgrims thanks to its proximity to the main attractions in the Galician capital. Our favourite hotel in this area is the Parador de Santiago - Hostal Reis Catolicos (pictured)
The area around the Cathedral of Santiago is highly recommended for tourists and pilgrims thanks to its proximity to the main attractions in the Galician capital. Our favourite hotel in this area is the Parador de Santiago – Hostal Reis Catolicos (pictured)

As mentioned above, the Old Town is the best area to stay in Santiago. That said, the city centre has several barrios with different atmospheres and attractions. These are some of the most interesting areas:


Where to Stay in Santiago, Spain: District by District

Click here to see all Santiago de Compostela hotels on a map
Click here to see all Santiago de Compostela hotels on a map

1. Centro Histórico (Old Town): Best Area for Tourists & Pilgrims

Con una historia que se remonta más de un milenio, el Centro Histórico de Santiago de Compostela acoge sus principales atracciones religiosas e históricas
Centro Histórico de Santiago de Compostela - Accommodation Map

With a history dating back over 1000 years, Santiago de Compostela’s Old Town is home to the city’s main religious and tourist attractions.

    Why is this the best area to stay in Santiago de Compostela:
  • Heart of the city
  • Santiago Cathedral
  • Charming medieval streets
  • Churches, monasteries & convents
  • Nightlife areas
  • All kinds of hotels
  • Museums, galleries & art centres
  • Great food scene

Centred around its famous cathedral, we couldn’t talk about Santiago de Compostela’s City Centre without talking about its most well-known landmark.

Between the 1st and 5th centuries CE, this area was the site of a small Roman village. After the fall of the Roman Empire, the town was abandoned, but its necropolis continued to be used as a quarry. According to legend, the remains of the apostle Saint James had taken to this necropolis and were found in the year 813 by local peasants. Later on, a church was built at the site to hold the relics. The miraculous tale of Santiago’s remains helped cementing the Christian faith in the region during the period of the Islamic conquest and led to the growth and development of the city.

The church quickly became an important pilgrimage destination within the kingdom of Asturias, and eventually began to attract believers from all corners of Christian Europe, especially after the conquest of Jerusalem by the Muslim. The Camino de Santiago (Way of Saint James) was born. The influx of pilgrims and resources propelled the transformation of the original chapel into a great Romanesque-style cathedral. Over the centuries, new Gothic, Renaissance and Baroque elements were added to give it its current appearance.

Thanks to the legend of Saint James, Compostela went from an abandoned necropolis to one of the most important cities of Christianity. Inns and hostels were built around the church to offer accommodation and medical care to pilgrims on the Camino, including the stunning Hostal de Los Reyes Católicos (the world’s oldest hotel still in operation) or the Hospedería San Martiño Pinario, in addition to important monasteries, convents and palaces.

In 1985, the Old City of Santiago de Compostela was included in the list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites as “one of the most beautiful urban areas in the world, enhanced by its Romanesque, Gothic and Baroque monuments.”

Today, the historic centre of Santiago de Compostela stands out for its beautiful squares, narrow medieval streets and centuries-old stone houses. From a tourist point of view, this neighborhood offers, in addition to the classic attractions, lively nightlife and restaurant areas; especially on Rúa do Vilar and around Plaza Cervantes, spectacular views of the cathedral from Rúa das Hortas, and exceptional properties; many located in historic buildings.

Best Hotels in Santiago’s Old Town

Parador de Santiago - Hostal Reis Catolicos
Best 5-star hotel
Parador de Santiago – Hostal Reis Catolicos

The Parador de Santiago – Hostal Reis Catolicos occupies a beautiful 15th-century building next to the famous Santiago Cathedral. This impressive guest house offers rooms with four-poster beds and free Wi-Fi.

San Francisco Hotel Monumento
Best 4-star hotel
San Francisco Hotel Monumento

The charming San Francisco Monumento is set in a former monastery in the centre of Santiago de Compostela, 150 meters from the famous cathedral. It houses an indoor pool and a hot tub.

Hotel San Miguel
Best 3-star hotel
Hotel San Miguel

This historic building is located just 200 metres from Santiago Cathedral, next to the San Miguel dos Agros Church. It features a charming Feng Shui garden and elegant rooms with free Wi-Fi and a flat-screen TV.

Hotel Universal
Best budget hotel
Hotel Universal

Hotel Universal is located in the heart of Santiago de Compostela, just a few steps from the historic centre, the emblematic Cathedral and the main shopping street. There is free Wi-Fi throughout the premises.

Hospedería San Martín Pinario
Best B&B
Hospedería San Martín Pinario

Located opposite Santiago de Compostela Cathedral, this former monastery offers simple, bright rooms and a 24-hour reception. In addition, traditional Galician dishes are served in its impressive dining room.

Albergue Linares
Best hostel
Albergue Linares

Albergue Linares is located in Santiago de Compostela, 400 metres from the Cathedral.


2. Praza Roxa & Ensanche: Best Location for Shopping & Nightlife

Ubicado entre la estación de trenes y el centro histórico, el Ensanche de Santiago concentra las principales calles de shopping y ocio de la capital gallega
Ensanche de Santiago de Compostela - Accommodation Map

Located between the train station and the Old Town, Ensanche is home to the main shopping & nightlife areas in the Galician capital.

    Why is this the best area to stay in Santiago de Compostela:
  • Centrally located
  • Best transportation connections
  • Shopping streets
  • Praza Roxa
  • Best area for nightlife
  • All kinds of hotels
  • Santiago de Compostela train station
  • Restaurants & terraces

Towards the end of the 19th century, and not unlike many other cities in Spain, Santiago’s authorities began to look outside the confines of the historic centre to plan the city’s expansion. However, it was not until the beginning of the 20th century, with the opening of Montero Ríos and Doctor Teixeiro streets that the Ensanche (literally “Expansion”) began to take form.

Also known as “Zona Nueva“, Ensanche is located directly south of the Old Town, between Plaza de Galicia and Avenida de Lugo. With the opening of the La Coruña-Santiago de Compostela-Zamora railway line in the 1940s and the construction of the current railway station, Ensanche became the demographic and economic centre of the city.

Praza Roxa, located at the confluence of important shopping streets, is the nightlife hub of the city. Popular among university students, this lively square is packed with restaurants, terraces and tapas bars. On the other hand, República de El Salvador, General Pardiñas and Doctor Teixeiro streets are home to the main fashion stores in the city.

Santiago’s Ensanche is home to a varied hotel offer. This area is especially recommended for travellers looking for a more local atmosphere and it’s also a great location in Santiago de Compostela for those travelling by train or coach since the railway and bus stations are within walking distance.

Best Hotels in Ensanche (Santiago de Compostela)

Eurostars Araguaney
Best 5-star hotel
Eurostars Araguaney

Eurostars Araguaney has an art gallery, outdoor pool, fitness centre and sauna. The spacious rooms have free Wi-Fi and a flat-screen TV.

Hotel Compostela
Best 4-star hotel
Hotel Compostela

This hotel is located in a historic building on the famous Plaza de Galicia, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, in the heart of Santiago de Compostela. It offers a buffet breakfast and has a coffee bar.

Capitol Boutique Hotel
Best 3-star hotel
Capitol Boutique Hotel

Located in the historic centre of Santiago de Compostela, just 650 meters from the cathedral, Capitol Boutique Hotel offers free Wi-Fi, a bar and rooms with a private terrace.

Hotel Windsor
Best budget hotel
Hotel Windsor

Hotel Windsor is located in the centre of Santiago de Compostela, 10 minutes’ walk from the cathedral. It offers a 24-hour reception and air-conditioned rooms with free Wi-Fi and a flat-screen TV.

Rey Fernando
Best B&B
Rey Fernando

The property is located in the heart of Santiago, near the historic centre and just 50 meters from the train station. It offers free Wi-Fi.

ArArAt
Best hostel
ArArAt

Offering free WiFi, ArArAt offers rooms in Santiago de Compostela, 1 km from the Tourist Office and 1.5 km from Santiago de Compostela Cathedral.


3. San Pedro & Belvís: Best Location for a Budget Trip

Ubicado al este del centro histórico de Santiago de Compostela, junto al acceso a la ciudad por el Camino Francés San Pedro y el vecino parque de Belvís son zonas tranquilas donde alojarse en la capital gallega
San Pedro & Belvís - Accommodation Map

Located east of the historic centre, next to the access to the city via the French Way, San Pedro & Belvís are quaint & charming areas to stay in Santiago.

    Why is this the best area to stay in Santiago de Compostela:
  • Access to Camino Francés
  • Quiet area
  • Local atmosphere
  • Terraces & restaurants
  • Churches & monasteries
  • Very close to the Old Town

Located directly east of the Old Town, San Pedro originated as a settlement outside the walls next to the gate that connected the city to the French Way. The pilgrims who travelled this popular route accessed the cathedral area through the Porta dos Franceses, today known as Porta do Camiño. Unlike other medieval suburbs, the neighbourhood of San Pedro was not predominantly lower-class, but a community where craftsmen, merchants and members of the wealthy classes lived together.

The part of the district that borders the Old Town is home to some representative buildings, such as the monastery of San Domingos de Bonaval, the Museo do Pobo Galego, the Pazo de Baladrón and the Chapel of San Pedro, in addition to the avant-garde Galician Center for Contemporary Art.

Far from being a sleepy settlement, its strategic position, next to the main entrance to the city, made San Pedro a vibrant place full of restaurants, bars, terraces, shops and varied accommodation.

South of San Pedro lies Belvís Park, a variation of “Bela vista”, in reference to its impressive panoramic views of the Old Town. Other attractions in this area include the Belvís Convent and the Minor Seminary.

Best Hotels in San Pedro & Belvís

Hotel Virxe da Cerca by Pousadas de Compostela
Best 4-star hotel
Hotel Virxe da Cerca by Pousadas de Compostela

This charming hotel is located in the historic centre of Santiago de Compostela, next to the Plaza de Abastos market and 300 meters from the cathedral. It offers a garden with views of the Belvís Convent.

Hotel Ciudad de Compostela
Best 3-star hotel
Hotel Ciudad de Compostela

Hotel Ciudad de Compostela offers accommodation in Santiago de Compostela. It has a bar and provides private parking.

Hotel Alda Bonaval
Best budget hotel
Hotel Alda Bonaval

This hotel is located in the historic centre of Santiago de Compostela, in an 18th-century Galician manor house. The property provides free Wi-Fi.

Stellae Luscofusco
Best B&B
Stellae Luscofusco

Located in the historic centre of Santiago de Compostela, Stellae Luscofusco P.R offers gardens with barbecue facilities and spacious rooms with free Wi-Fi and plasma TVs with Netflix.

Albergue Santos
Best hostel
Albergue Santos

Featuring a garden and a terrace, Albergue Santos is located in Santiago de Compostela, less than 1 km from Santiago de Compostela Cathedral and a 14-minute walk from the Tourism Office.


4. Campus Sur: Best Location for Nature Lovers

Con el parque de La Alameda, el Campus Vida de la USC y el paseo del río Sarela como principales atractivos, la zona del Campus Sur de Santiago es un remanso de paz y tranquilidad repleto de espacios verdes
Campus Sur de Santiago de Compostela - Accommodation Map

With the Alameda park, the USC Campus Vida and the Sarela river walk as its main attractions, the South Campus area is a green haven of peace and tranquillity.

    Why is this the best area to stay in Santiago de Compostela:
  • Parque de La Alameda
  • Great views of the cathedral & Old Town
  • Sarela river walk
  • Charming area
  • USC South Campus
  • Quiet area to stay in Santiago de Compostela

Located between the Old Town, Ensanche and USC’s Campus Sur, the La Alameda Park has been the main green space of Santiago de Compostela for more than a century. This impressive park, which includes Paseo da Alameda, Robleda de Santa Susana and Paseo da Ferradura, offers, in addition to beautiful gardens and monuments, spectacular views of the old city.

After the cathedral and its adjacent buildings, the other hallmark of Santiago is its university. While the foundation of the University of Santiago de Compostela dates back to the end of the 15th century, it was not until the beginning of the 20th century that the current South Campus took shape. In 1929, an ambitious project to build new faculties and residences, using the land that was urbanised for the Galician Regional Exhibition of 1909, was approved. The project, conceived as a garden city, has suffered very few modifications since its creation and even today is considered one of the most beautiful university campuses in Spain.

Not far from the campus is the Sarela River Walk, a beautiful green space that offers endless hiking possibilities among natural landscapes and centuries-old bridges.

The best part? USC’s South Campus is the best area to stay in Santiago de Compostela for a relaxing holiday, and its hotel offer, although limited, has better value for money.

Best Hotels around USC’s Campus Sur

Hotel Palacio del Carmen, Autograph Collection
Best 5-star hotel
Hotel Palacio del Carmen, Autograph Collection

This luxury hotel occupies a carefully restored former convent and is close to the historic centre of Santiago de Compostela. The building mixes old and modern elements. There is free Wi-Fi throughout the premises.

Eurostars Gran Hotel Santiago
Best 4-star hotel
Eurostars Gran Hotel Santiago

Eurostars Gran Hotel Santiago is located in Santiago de Compostela, a 20-minute walk from the cathedral and the city centre. This property is well connected to the AP-9 Motorway and offers free Wi-Fi.

Hotel Herradura
Best 3-star hotel
Hotel Herradura

This charming hotel is located in the centre of Santiago, next to Alameda Park and a 5-minute walk from the Cathedral of Santiago. It is a listed building within the historical-artistic complex with a free wireless internet connection.

Hotel Pazos Alba
Best budget hotel
Hotel Pazos Alba

Hotel Pazos Alba is located 350 meters from Santiago de Compostela Cathedral, in the city’s historic centre. Housed in an attractive stone building, this hotel offers rooms with free internet access.

Casa Diocesana VIA LUCIS
Best B&B
Casa Diocesana VIA LUCIS

Located on the campus of the University of Santiago de Compostela, Casa Diocesana VIA LUCIS features pretty gardens and simple rooms. It is located in the old part of the city, just a 10-minute walk from the cathedral.

Blanco Albergue
Best hostel
Blanco Albergue

Blanco Albergue offers rooms in Santiago de Compostela. It has a shared kitchen, a shared lounge and free Wi-Fi throughout.


5. Campus Norte: A Great Area to Stay in Santiago de Compostela

Con un carácter moderno, la zona del Campus Norte de la USC es una de las mejores zonas donde conviene alojarse en Santiago de Compostela, España
Campus Norte de Santiago de Compostela - Accommodation Map

With a modern character, the USC’s Campus Norte is a nice and quiet area for tourists in Santiago.

    Why is this the best area to stay in Santiago de Compostela:
  • Parks & gardens
  • Auditorio de Galicia & Museo de Ciencias Naturales
  • University area
  • North Campus
  • Quiet area to stay in Santiago

As we mentioned previously, thanks to the creation of the University of Santiago during the Renaissance, the city quickly established itself as one of the most important educational centres in Spain, a distinction it still enjoys. The Campus Norte, built in the late 20th century, includes a number of avant-garde buildings, beautiful leafy parks, and several tourist attractions..

Perhaps the most outstanding building in this modern area is the Galicia Auditorium. Designed by the architect Julio Cano Lasso, the building was inaugurated in 1988. Surrounding it is the Parque de la Música, which, in addition to lawns and green areas, offers views of the convents of San Francisco and San Martín Pinario and the towers of the cathedral. The Museum of Natural History, located in the Vista Alegre Park, exhibits a great variety of animal specimens.

Not far away, the Monte de Deus offers hiking opportunities and beautiful views of the Galician capital.

Best Hotels in the USB’s Campus Norte Area

NH Collection Santiago de Compostela
Best 5-star hotel
NH Collection Santiago de Compostela

This design hotel is located in a quiet area, 13 minutes’ walk from Plaza del Obradoiro and the cathedral. There is free WiFi, an indoor pool and a seasonal outdoor pool.

Hotel Santa Clara
Best budget hotel
Hotel Santa Clara

This is a small, stylish, trendy hotel, ideal for exploring this historic city. It is located right next to the Camino Ingles pilgrimage route from A Coruña.

Loop INN Albergue Santiago de Compostela
Best hostel
Loop INN Albergue Santiago de Compostela

Situated within 2.2 km of Santiago de Compostela Convention Centre and 400 metres of the Pilgrimage Museum, Loop INN Albergue Santiago de Compostela offers rooms in Santiago de Compostela.


6. San Lázaro & Area Central: Modern Area to Stay on the Camino Frances to Santiago

En el extremo oriental de Santiago, en su entrada por el Camino Francés, se encuentran las zonas de Área Central y San Lázaro
Área Central & San Lázaro - Accommodation Map

At the eastern end of Santiago, at its entrance along the Camino Frances, are Área Central & San Lázaro.

    Why is this the best area to stay in Santiago de Compostela:
  • Near Camino Francés
  • Área Central shopping centre
  • Quiet & modern area
  • Lots of hotels
  • San Lázaro Stadium

Opened in 1993 as the largest shopping centre in northern Spain, Área Central is one of the shopping icons of the Galician capital. Despite its name, this mall is located in the east end of Santiago, near the entrance to the city through the French Way.

A couple of kilometres to the east is San Lázaro Stadium, a multipurpose stadium home to the local football team, SD Compostela.

Santiago’s eastern districts are excellent areas to stay as a stopping point for pilgrims on the Camino Frances.

Best Hoteles in East Santiago de Compostela

Eurostars San Lazaro
Best 4-star hotel
Eurostars San Lazaro

This modern hotel is located in the San Lázaro district of Santiago de Compostela. All rooms include air conditioning, free Wi-Fi, a TV, a minibar and a private bathroom with a hairdryer.

Exe Area Central
Best 3-star hotel
Exe Area Central

Hotel Exe Área Central offers free Wi-Fi and is located in the Área Central Shopping Center, 1.5 km from the historic centre and Santiago de Compostela Cathedral. It has a cafeteria where a buffet breakfast is served.

Hotel San Lázaro
Best budget hotel
Hotel San Lázaro

Hotel San Lázaro is located in Santiago de Compostela, just 20 minutes walk from the city’s famous cathedral. It is located on the Camino de Santiago and offers rooms with free Wi-Fi.

Dream in Santiago
Best hostel
Dream in Santiago

Set in Santiago de Compostela and with Tourism Office reachable within 5 km, Dream in Santiago offers express check-in and check-out, non-smoking rooms, a shared lounge, free WiFi and a garden.


7. O Castiñeiriño & Cruceiro do Sar: Quiet Areas Away from the Tourist Buzz

Ubicado entre la vía del tren y la Ciudad de la Cultura de Galicia, O Castiñeiriño es una zona encantadora de Santiago de Compostela
O Castiñeiriño - Accommodation Map

Located between the train tracks and the City of Culture of Galicia, Cruceiro do Sar & Castiñeiriño are some of the most charming areas in Santiago de Compostela.

    Why is this the best area to stay in Santiago de Compostela:
  • Shopping centres
  • Colegiata de Santa María de Sar
  • Quiet area
  • Ciudad de la Cultura de Galicia

South of Avenida de Lugo there are different neighbourhoods with totally different atmospheres; the western area, around Rúa do Restollal, is made up of shopping centres and modern office buildings, as well as several new developments with semi-detached houses and parks.

By contrast, the east is home to Cruceiro do Sar, a traditional neighbourhood that emerged around the Collegiate Church of Santa María do Sar, a 13th-century Romanesque church.

The Cruceiro do Sar skyline is dominated by Monte Gaiás and the Galician City of Culture, a complex of several buildings dedicated to cultural affairs and surrounded by parks and viewpoints.

Best Hotels in South Santiago de Compostela

Hotel Santiago Plaza Affiliated by Meliá
Best 4-star hotel
Hotel Santiago Plaza Affiliated by Meliá

Surrounded by the Paxonal Park and located 1.5 km from the historic center of Santiago de Compostela, Hotel Santiago Plaza Affiliated by Meliá offers free Wi-Fi throughout.

A Casa da Torre Branca
Best B&B
A Casa da Torre Branca

This 17th-century country house, located just 5 km from Santiago de Compostela Cathedral, has been restored and converted into an elegant rural hotel. All rooms are uniquely decorated in a rustic style.



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