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accommodation

Henrietta

New Member
Time of past OR future Camino
May 2015
I'm thinking of walking from Le Puy to St Jean this September and I'm wondering whether I can just walk and find accommodation as I go, or do I need to book it in advance? When I walked from St Jean to Finisterre in 2015 I found it easy to find a bed without prior booking and this is my preferred way.
 
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TMcA

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Pamplona to Santiago (2013)
Le Puy to Pamplona in segments (2013 - 2016)
Pamplona to León
Some thoughts...

September is a busy month on this route. I would reserve your first night or two, just to give yourself peace of mind, and then make a decision about whether or not to reserve - after you assess the amount of traffic on the trail and in the places you have selected to stay.

In October some places are beginning to close.

Another factor is whether the number of walkers declines after Conques. You will get a sense of that as you walk.

As you get a sense of how far you will probably walk each day, you can check your guidebook (most people carry Miam Miam Dodo) and see how many lodging options are available and how many beds they offer.

Places that offer dinner like to know, in advance, the count they will need to serve. This may be the best reason to reserve.

And, yes, I also prefer not to reserve ahead. But I have done it on this route.

Bon chemin!

Tom
 
D

Deleted member 3000

Guest
The French call ahead, so you should too. Even gites d'etape reserve beds, and you may find them full. Hosts do not sit around waiting for pilgrims, though September is busy enough that they are not likely to spontaneously take a week off. There may be beds, but you may have to wander town looking for them. The tourist offices can help, but by the afternoon, they may have problems finding a bed for you. There is a lot less infrastructure than on the Camino Frances, and stages are longer. Often there is no option for walking another 5km for a bed. If you have problems with speaking French on the phone, your host can help you. It is not necessary for make reservations more than a day or two ahead, and in the larger places with hotels, you probably can just show up. However, if you don't do it the French way, you may be in for surprises. By the way, a camping location is not like the U.S. It is likely to have tents, cabins, yurts, or caravans. Bon chemin.
 

Kitsambler

Jakobsweg Junkie
Time of past OR future Camino
Le Puy 2010-11, Prague 2012, Nuremberg 2013, Einsiedeln 2015, Geneva 2017-19
The easiest thing to do is: use Miam Miam Dodo to identify your desired lodging for the next night, and ask your host tonight to call ahead for you. The hosts generally know each other, and they speak French with the local accent. Book one day ahead, or two days ahead for the weekend. Always ask for demi-pension (if your budget can take it). And also ask if the boulangerie or epicerie will be open.
 
Time of past OR future Camino
please see signature
I left Le Puy early April 2016. This seemed to be a popular time with many small groups wlaking for a week or fortnight as part of their annual leave.

Having no French I asked my hosy to ring ahead. But only on two occassions. The last was to book a place in the Parochial gite in Saint-Jean.

I had no trouble getting a bed each night, despite arriving mid to late afternoon. On three occassions there were just two of us and once just me.

And despite having no French I was usually able to participate in, or at the least follow, the chat at meals.

And despite having no singing voice, on several iccassions persuaded the company to give a song from their culture.

A most enjoyable jaunt in all respects.

Kia kaha (take care, be strong, get moving)
 
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Henrietta

New Member
Time of past OR future Camino
May 2015
Some thoughts...

September is a busy month on this route. I would reserve your first night or two, just to give yourself peace of mind, and then make a decision about whether or not to reserve - after you assess the amount of traffic on the trail and in the places you have selected to stay.

In October some places are beginning to close.

Another factor is whether the number of walkers declines after Conques. You will get a sense of that as you walk.

As you get a sense of how far you will probably walk each day, you can check your guidebook (most people carry Miam Miam Dodo) and see how many lodging options are available and how many beds they offer.

Places that offer dinner like to know, in advance, the count they will need to serve. This may be the best reason to reserve.

And, yes, I also prefer not to reserve ahead. But I have done it on this route.

Bon chemin!

Tom


Thanks, all your replies are really helpful.
 

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