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A few questions

spanishben

New Member
Hi there, I have a few questions about the Camino that I hope you guys can help with.

Where does one get the clam shell everyone carries? Do people normally leave it at the cathedral at the end or keep it?

Do I need a topographical map or some type of detailed map, or is the path so clearly marked that I can just follow it?

How do I know where to find the official albergue in each town? How many people do they normally sleep and is it always in communal dorms or do some people get a private room?

Many thanks for your help!

Ben
 
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Luco

Member
spanishben said:
Hi there, I have a few questions about the Camino that I hope you guys can help with.

Where does one get the clam shell everyone carries? Do people normally leave it at the cathedral at the end or keep it?

Do I need a topographical map or some type of detailed map, or is the path so clearly marked that I can just follow it?

How do I know where to find the official albergue in each town? How many people do they normally sleep and is it always in communal dorms or do some people get a private room?

Many thanks for your help!

Ben

You have questions? I have answers
you can buy the clam shells in albuerges along the way, most sell them

I had a map, and never used it, it is very clearly signed all the way through

and you can find out where the official albergue is for each town by either visiting tourist offices or buying a guide book like lonely planet's walks through spain

finally, I didn't see any segregated dorms, which ranged in people from 8 to 200, and usually had between 40-80 people
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
Hi Ben - In England Clam shells are called Scallop shells - France Coquille St. Jacques, Spain Vieiras (I think - anyone?)

Buy on the way or get them before you start (you'll have enough to worry about!) from http://stores.ebay.co.uk/PilgrimSupplies.

True, you don't need a map or guide as you won't get lost - but it is nice to get the feeling that you know where you are, how far you will have to walk, what to look out for, how often you will find water, where you might get lunch, and so on - so a guide can be good.

Try putting 'Camino Frances' into Amazon Books or visit the UK Confraternity at
http://www.csj.org.uk - they have a great on-line book shop.

In the refuges they will cram in as many bunk beds into each room as they possibly can - you could end up just inches away from another face - or pair of feet.
Enjoy!
 

spanishben

New Member
Thanks for the extra info. I had another question as well. I have heard about these Pilgrim menus, where you get a cheap meal in some bars, is it like a typical 3 course Spanish menu del dia? How much do they cost? Thanks again for the help!
 
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Ulysse

Active Member
I have had some good menu de la dia for pilgrims (!) at 8 euros, including tinto.

I also had some of the ugliest meals in my life for 10 euros, also including a red beverage which I did not drink because it was close to smoking poison.

With a good bread, local cheese or ham, tomatoes, and bottled wine you cannot go wrong. Plenty of places along the way to get good food.
 
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Frances, Jul-Aug 05, Frances, Jul-Aug 06, Portugues, Oct 2010
Pilgrim menus cost around 8 euros. Depending where you are it can be a miserly affair or the best meal you'll have all week.

Scallop shells (Vieiras) were traditionally the mark of one returning from their pilgrimage. Having said that they're available all over the place. I remember a vending machine halfway up the mountain to O'Cebreiro selling them.
 

spanishben

New Member
... actually, one more question if it is OK...

Are there any really amazing bit of scenery en route in Galicia (apart from around O Cebreiro) - do you ever walk through vinyards?
 
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Luco

Member
Galicia was one of the most beautiful parts of the Camino

rolling hills, eucalypt forests (why there's eucalypt forests in spain beats me, but they sure smell nice), and mountains to climb

really, all of Galicia is amazing scenery
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
Sorry - Galicia can be really wet - so umbrella forests ... any town on a rainy market day.....
 

Ulysse

Active Member
You go through vineyards from France to almost Burgos. Then, a spell through the Bierzo Valley (between mounts of Leon and of Galicia).

I must say, at the risk of being shot on the forum, that the quality of the wines get progressively worst the closer you get to Galicia. The best wines on the Camino Frances, according to me, are those of the Navarra and mostly Rioja regions (around Logrono). :lol:
 
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This book's focus is on reducing the risk of failure through being well prepared.

mika

New Member
spanishben said:
The Eucalyptus is for paper production - it grows really fast so is a a good cash supply!

But because it contains eucalyptus oil, it does not decompose. Not easily, anyway. Nor do pretty much any kind of bugs or larvae eat eucalyptus. These things lead to he eucalyptus forests being almost dead: no birds, very little undergrowth if any. A shame.
 

sillydoll

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
2002 CF: 2004 from Paris: 2006 VF: 2007 CF: 2009 Aragones, Ingles, Finisterre: 2011 X 2 on CF: 2013 'Caracoles': 2014 CF and Ingles 'Caracoles":2015 Logrono-Burgos (Hospitalero San Anton): 2016 La Douay to Aosta/San Gimignano to Rome:
Eucalyptus trees

Some more for the Historians: Who brought the Eucalyptus trees to Galicia?

In 1846 a Spanish priest from Galicia, by the name of Rosendo Salvado, founded the Benedictine monastery of New Norcia north of Perth in Western Australia.
He is credited with introducing olives, wheat and wool to the region as well as the skills of making bread and olive oils. Today only 11 monks are in residence but the Spanish connection endures with two Spanish monks remaining. Dom Paulino, who was the baker for over 50 years, still works in the olive groves at the age of 95 years.
Bishop Salvado found time to document his 55 years of work in 11 diaries containing almost a million words written in Spanish, Galego, something described as “Spanglish”, French, Italian, Latin and English.
From these works we learn that it was Salvado who took the first eucalyptus trees to Spain. Fire-prone and a ruthless competitor against native species, the eucalyptus has proved to be an unwelcome pilgrim.

Salvado Street in Santiago de Compostela is named after him.

http://www.newnorcia.wa.edu.au/
 
Re: Eucalyptus trees

sillydoll said:
From these works we learn that it was Salvado who took the first eucalyptus trees to Spain. Fire-prone and a ruthless competitor against native species, the eucalyptus has proved to be an unwelcome pilgrim.

some of the reasons why its planting is now being discouraged. The areas affected last year by fires are being replanted with indigenous species not eucalyptus.
 

sillydoll

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
2002 CF: 2004 from Paris: 2006 VF: 2007 CF: 2009 Aragones, Ingles, Finisterre: 2011 X 2 on CF: 2013 'Caracoles': 2014 CF and Ingles 'Caracoles":2015 Logrono-Burgos (Hospitalero San Anton): 2016 La Douay to Aosta/San Gimignano to Rome:
Walking through Galicia

Walking through Galicia reminded me of parts of Yorkshire. Rolling green hills, small subsistence farms with dry stone walls, herds of dairy cows (the reason for the abundance of sickly-sweet cow shit!), stone barns, and of course the bagpipes is the regional musical instrument.
 

paulmack

Member
Oh Sil, what memories you bring back - the sort of warm friendly oldfashioned Byre smell that you get in the small villages (everything is too processed and "Friesianed" in England now) and the Gaita lessons that I had in a Pulpo cafe when I was foolish enough to tell the locals that I played English folk music.

Thanks

Paul
 
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