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Accommodation issues on the Norte ?

Time of past OR future Camino
Inglès April 2023
Primitivo July 2023
Greetings all. I’ve got friends walking the Norte at the moment. They’re reporting that in Bilbao and onwards ( three days now) everything (budget) is full. Cheapest double they could get in Bilabao was €90, at 14.00 . The next three days prices haven’t been much better. Appreciate they could have booked ahead, but they hadn’t ( although now will). It seems incredibly early in the season for that sort of demand. Has anyone else on the trail come across this? Or have they just been unlucky? Are the numbers on the trail that high?🇳🇿
 
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Greetings all. I’ve got friends walking the Norte at the moment. They’re reporting that in Bilbao and onwards ( three days now) everything (budget) is full. Cheapest double they could get in Bilabao was €90, at 14.00 . The next three days prices haven’t been much better. Appreciate they could have booked ahead, but they hadn’t ( although now will). It seems incredibly early in the season for that sort of demand. Has anyone else on the trail come across this? Or have they just been unlucky? Are the numbers on the trail that high?🇳🇿


There is a big conference/ holiday expo going on in Bilbao. Three days.


There was also the First of May and people might have taken some extra days off for a small holiday.
 
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Also - a lot of albergues do not open this early in the season. Many don't open until June 1. Have they used gronze .com to look? It usually has opening dates for the season. I almost didn't go last year (end of May start date) because I was worried about this - but it was so close to June 1 it wasn't a problem. Also - on the weekends the cities on the beaches are busier. I had less issues after Bilbao finding accommodations all around though.
 
Thanks. But I thought most of the Albergues opened April/ May?
I’ll check re: gronze
Depends on the route. I believe that is true of the Frances/Portuguese, but the Norte has less pilgrims and some don't open until later.

I don't know opening dates for other routes. I have done the Primitivo too - but it was the second half of June so I knew they would be open by then.
 
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I think most albergues on the Norte are open since Semana Santa (beginning of April). Beds are rather unequally divided along the stages on the Norte, so that might not help. And last weekend was a 'puente' (long weekend): Monday was a holiday and Tuesday was a holiday for people from Madrid (who tend to visit the northern coast a lot).
 
Thanks. But I thought most of the Albergues opened April/ May?
I’ll check re: gronze
I've noticed that the albergue in Lezama doesn't open until June 1. I'll be starting from Bayonne on the 19th, so I'm paying attention! The website for Albergue-Casa Rural Intxauspe in Markina where I stayed in 2018 isn't working, and they haven't answered my WhatsApp message.
 
Greetings all. I’ve got friends walking the Norte at the moment. They’re reporting that in Bilbao and onwards ( three days now) everything (budget) is full. Cheapest double they could get in Bilabao was €90, at 14.00 . The next three days prices haven’t been much better. Appreciate they could have booked ahead, but they hadn’t ( although now will). It seems incredibly early in the season for that sort of demand. Has anyone else on the trail come across this? Or have they just been unlucky? Are the numbers on the trail that high?🇳🇿
I see on Gronze the two albergues are closed but after that they should be OK if they book ahead. It is however limited at each stage ending for communal accommodation
 
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Greetings all. I’ve got friends walking the Norte at the moment. They’re reporting that in Bilbao and onwards ( three days now) everything (budget) is full. Cheapest double they could get in Bilabao was €90, at 14.00 . The next three days prices haven’t been much better. Appreciate they could have booked ahead, but they hadn’t ( although now will). It seems incredibly early in the season for that sort of demand. Has anyone else on the trail come across this? Or have they just been unlucky? Are the numbers on the trail that high?🇳🇿
I’m currently on the Norte and already got shut out once at Deba on a Thursday!! Note that there are not many rooms in Deba to begin with but it surprised me given the scant number of pilgrims I saw on the trails. The solution was fairly easy since the train station is directly next to the Albergue. Ended up taking the local train back to Zarautz where there are plenty of places to stay then hopped an early morning train back to Deba and started where I left off. I’m actually having trouble finding places that give stamps. Even grocery stores on the Francis seem to have stamps. At this point it’s all moot given I lost my passport somehow after San Sebastián when I went off trail to P:). If you run across a passport that has a couple yellow spots on it (don’t worry P is sterile), it’s probably mine;).
 
I've noticed that the albergue in Lezama doesn't open until June 1. I'll be starting from Bayonne on the 19th, so I'm paying attention! The website for Albergue-Casa Rural Intxauspe in Markina where I stayed in 2018 isn't working, and they haven't answered my WhatsApp message.
I am just starting planning for the Norte and want to start from Bayonne myself. Would be interested in your planning from Bayonne to Irgun.
My thanks in advance!
Blessed travels!
 
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I’m on the Norte now, past Santander. Not too many pilgrims but growing since Bilbao.

Fining Accommodation has been ok but it will only get worse…surfers coming, tourist season approaching (staring earlier) and I’m hearing some pilgrims jumping from Francis to here because of the numbers

My reco booked first few nights ( no downside) especially Deba then see what the vibe is.

Buen Camino
 
Also - a lot of albergues do not open this early in the season. Many don't open until June 1. Have they used gronze .com to look? It usually has opening dates for the season. I almost didn't go last year (end of May start date) because I was worried about this - but it was so close to June 1 it wasn't a problem. Also - on the weekends the cities on the beaches are busier. I had less issues after Bilbao finding accommodations all around though.
I'll be starting the camino del norte from Irun on the 11th of july). How long in advance would yoy recommend booking the hostels? Is two days safe? Or is booking 3/4 days ahead necessary?
 
I'll be starting the camino del norte from Irun on the 11th of july). How long in advance would yoy recommend booking the hostels? Is two days safe? Or is booking 3/4 days ahead necessary?
I never booked more than 24 hours in advance. This was June 2022. Except San Sebastian - that one seemed to be filling up. It is a popular tourist destination. It seems to be more popular for July/August.
 
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If you have a pretty good idea of your itinerary, and usually the first week of the Norte is pretty locked in. I would definitely go for 3 to 4 days in advance almost no downside.
 
3 days. If you can skip Bilbao for Portugalete, much better.
 

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