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albergues with children

tomishy

Member
Year of past OR future Camino
April/May 2019
Hi
my sister and i will be walking with a 5yr old and a 15yr old and just wondering if we would be welcome in albergues (dormitory ones etc) . also we are looking at sleeping bags but wondering aboit a silk liner inside a thermal liner to save the bulkiness of sleeping bags. we will be end April 2019 through to early june.
TIA. buen camino
 
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with a 5yr old and a 15yr old and just wondering if we would be welcome in albergues
Yes. Your five-year-old may or may not fit in well. I did the last 100 km with my 4 1/2 year old grandson (and his father) and we found private rooms a bit more amenable both for the child and for fellow pilgrims. You are versed in the golden rule, so apply it and your decisions will be well-founded. :)
 

Kiwi-family

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Past: (2012, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2018)-Frances, Baztan, San Salvador, Primitivo, Fisterra,VdlP, Madrid
I have stayed almost exclusively in albergues with my children and can honestly say the worst behaviour I have ever seen was from people decades older than them!
My kids quite liked staying at albergues because fellow pilgrims would gush over them doing their own laundry or cooking dinner - who doesn’t like that kind of encouragement? (especially when their mother just expected them to get on with it!)
Know your child and if he/she will not be a nuisance, then don’t be scared of trying albergues.
 

tomishy

Member
Year of past OR future Camino
April/May 2019
I have stayed almost exclusively in albergues with my children and can honestly say the worst behaviour I have ever seen was from people decades older than them!
My kids quite liked staying at albergues because fellow pilgrims would gush over them doing their own laundry or cooking dinner - who doesn’t like that kind of encouragement? (especially when their mother just expected them to get on with it!)
Know your child and if he/she will not be a nuisance, then don’t be scared of trying albergues.

Thank you! our children are extremely well behaved and have travelled extensively. we are on a tight budget hence the albergues so will try them and see how we go. thankyou for your encouragement!
 
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Tay and I

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Camino Francis " 2018"
Yes. Your five-year-old may or may not fit in well. I did the last 100 km with my 4 1/2 year old grandson (and his father) and we found private rooms a bit more amenable both for the child and for fellow pilgrims. You are versed in the golden rule, so apply it and your decisions will be well-founded. :)
 

Tay and I

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Camino Francis " 2018"
Thank you! our children are extremely well behaved and have travelled extensively. we are on a tight budget hence the albergues so will try them and see how we go. thankyou for your encouragement!


I am traveling with an 11year old . I hope that she gets to met up with young people her age
Any views on welcome
 
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nycwalking

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Ourense to Santiago (2019), CF: (2014, 2004, 2002, 2001). On to Fisterra, (2002, 4, 14).
If you stay in albergues you'll pay an average of 10 euros per person, that is 40 euro a night.

A private room may be less expensive because you are paying for the room and not the bed.

Maybe mix it up: albergues, private rooms, etc.

Buen camino.
 

kelleymac

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
March/April 2015, Late April 2016, Sept/Oct 2017, April 2019.
I traveled with a 13 year old. The albergues were great for us. There were two German boys ages 7 and 10 in one of the albergues we stayed at. They were delightful.

I have no idea why anyone would tell you that other pilgrims would not welcome children. We never had problems and neither did any family I have spoken with.

You may want a private room is your little one needs some extra rest... but after walking a day, I'm sure he'll seep well.
 

Anamiri

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2016, 2017, 2019 Camino Frances
We met an Alaskan family, the girl was 8 I think, and the boy 12. They were such a delight. (they were interviewed in the final episode of the BBC pilgrim series.)
I can understand why you wouldn't want really small kids (liable to crying) in an albergue but I would think older ones would be just fine. And the bonus is that kids are unlikely to snore.
 

Ferenjinan

Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Le Puy- Auvillar ( 2018 )
Lisbon- Santiago (2019)

St. Jean Pied a Port - Finisterre 2008
"We met an Alaskan family,"

Am curious to know if you remember who/where from, as I am an Alaskan (albeit living abroad) and am planning to walk from Le Puy in the Autumn. (Did the Camino Frances 10 years ago. Never met any other Alaskans)
 

NualaOC

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
A few and hopefully lots more. See signature.
Thanks for starting this thread, @tomishy and to all who shared their experience/opinions. I'm in the early stages of planning a short Camino with my 11-year old niece and have been thinking about the albergue-versus private room question. I imagine that we'll opt for a combination of both.

For the nights in our own room, I plan to opt for private albergues that have both dorms and rooms. I'd like her to have the albergue experience most days- cooking our own food, doing laundry, eating with other pilgrims etc. There are plenty of those albergues on the Camino Frances. Some also have dorms with as few as 4 beds, which could work perfectly for you.

Happy planning and Buen Camino!
 
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Anamiri

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2016, 2017, 2019 Camino Frances
"We met an Alaskan family,"

Am curious to know if you remember who/where from, as I am an Alaskan (albeit living abroad) and am planning to walk from Le Puy in the Autumn. (Did the Camino Frances 10 years ago. Never met any other Alaskans)
We met them first at Rabanal, he was called Big J, from the Red Dog bar in Juneau Alaska. They had started in Le Puys, and were nine months into a year long trip. The kids were lovely, really well spoken and polite.
 

Becky 59

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Camino Frances (May 2018)
Camino Ingles (Aug 2019)
I have been walking off and on with a family bringing their 4 year old and 6 month old boys. They did have to stay in an open bunk room one night because there were no private rooms available, but usually took a private room. The mom told me there is a Facebook group for families on the Camino which gave her lots of good suggestions.
 

Joe Query

Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Plan to walk Camino del Norte (possibly) in June/July 2018 with family of four.
We start walking the Norte in 8 days with our 2 and 4 year old kids. We have opted for pre-booking all accommodation- mostly pensioners and hostales. For just a few more euros we could have a private bathroom and much more privacy. Our average night is around 65 euros. We have very small cots that will go in our luggage transfer so we have booked mostly all double rooms. We will see how it goes. Maybe we will opt for the albergues when we walk the second half next year.
 
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Joe Query

Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Plan to walk Camino del Norte (possibly) in June/July 2018 with family of four.
We are definitely splurging on a couple nights and want to make sure this first go is a good one! The only way we could do it much cheaper is in hostels or albergues and the private bathroom is a must have for mom at this point! We will test out all types of rooms over the next couple months to see what makes the most sense for our family.
I have heard the frances can be a bit cheaper than the Norte
 

MikeyC

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
CF - September 2016
CF - April May 2017
Shikoku - October 2017
Kumano Kodo - October 2017
CF - 2019
The Youth Hostel Association in the UK has clear rules about children in their hostels. Over 16 fine on their own in dorm rooms. 12 to 16 again ok in dorm rooms but must be with an adult. Under 12 must be in private rooms.
Spanish hostels appear not to have clear rules, at least none I could find but the YHA rules might serve as an indication of what is reasonable.
 

Kiwi-family

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Past: (2012, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2018)-Frances, Baztan, San Salvador, Primitivo, Fisterra,VdlP, Madrid
Under 12 must be in private rooms.
Spanish hostels appear not to have clear rules, at least none I could find but the YHA rules might serve as an indication of what is reasonable.
I would contend that it's about whether the kids know how to behave in a public space or not. But by my criteria, I there are adults I have met who I would not put in an albergue.
If consideration of others is key, age may not be so important.
 
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I would think one should also expect that children may behave out of character as they are being asked to walk long distances on rough terrain, up and down hills in whatever weather presents itself. There were days my legs ached so badly I wanted to whine but instead was able to wine. This is not a walk in the park.
 

Tay and I

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Camino Francis " 2018"
Thanks for starting this thread, @tomishy and to all who shared their experience/opinions. I'm in the early stages of planning a short Camino with my 11-year old niece and have been thinking about the albergue-versus private room question. I imagine that we'll opt for a combination of both.

For the nights in our own room, I plan to opt for private albergues that have both dorms and rooms. I'd like her to have the albergue experience most days- cooking our own food, doing laundry, eating with other pilgrims etc. There are plenty of those albergues on the Camino Frances. Some also have dorms with as few as 4 beds, which could work perfectly for you.

Happy planning and Buen Camino!

Thank you for this . I plan the be flexible . I’m 72 ( young variety )so we will be supporting each other

I am thinking also of sending bags on each day and see that this is easily done but welcome views .
 

kelleymac

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
March/April 2015, Late April 2016, Sept/Oct 2017, April 2019.
The Youth Hostel Association in the UK has clear rules about children in their hostels. Over 16 fine on their own in dorm rooms. 12 to 16 again ok in dorm rooms but must be with an adult. Under 12 must be in private rooms.
Spanish hostels appear not to have clear rules, at least none I could find but the YHA rules might serve as an indication of what is reasonable.

I have found that the albergues are very different than youth hostels and backpackers hostels. I was concerned about taking my 13 year old when I first went as I had experienced some very loud, drunk, stoned parties at hostels. (Harare comes to mind... But that is another story.) But everyone, including my son, was respectful and interested in food and then sleep. :)

There was a group of German men who would give my son a big "Hurrah" and clap him on the shoulder when we would catch up with them at the end of the day. :)
 

Casserole

Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2009 - Solo, SJPdP to Finisterre
2018 - Daughter (2) and Hubby, Sarria to SdC
I have been walking off and on with a family bringing their 4 year old and 6 month old boys. They did have to stay in an open bunk room one night because there were no private rooms available, but usually took a private room. The mom told me there is a Facebook group for families on the Camino which gave her lots of good suggestions.

@kelleymac I’d love to know if you can remember the name of the FB group. We are headed out with our 2 year old in August.

@tomishy i don’t have many answers for palaces to stay since I’ll be doing something similar, but I can give some insight for the sleeping bag/liners. All albergues and hotels/private rooms will have blankets. I took a silk liner on my first one and it was perfect. It added a little extra comfort, but it definitely wasn’t necessary. At least that was my experience.
 

Tay and I

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Camino Francis " 2018"
Hola , Well its only 7 more weeks to go and Tay and I will be stepping out from SJPDP. We are looking forward to meeting up with happy walkers along the way. We have be practising our strides up hill and down dale. The ice breaker merino socks are still a bit scratchy on my delicate old feet so still seacrhing for a suitable pairof socks. And, found out they take such a long time to dry. I have sent away for a Macabi hiking skirt and hoping when it arrives next week and it will be suitable. I dont want the restriction of long trousers and shorts are not my thing so here goes. I know Tay will fit in with the crowd. At 11 she is smart and determined.
 
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Year of past OR future Camino
Camino inglés October 2016
Camino Primitivo May 2017
Camino Portugues Central October 2017
Has anyone here ever heard or read about age restrictions for children i municipal albergues? Someone posted in another group, that there is usually an age restriction of 16 or 18 years. I never heard of it and never had any problems when traveling with my kids when thay where teenager. Just curious whether the rule actually exists?
 

Via2010

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
06/07 & 12 Camino Francés, 08-10 Via de la Plata, 13/14 & 17 Camino Portugués, 18 Camino Primitivo
When I walked the CF from Astorga onwards with my nephew (10) in 2012 there were no restrictions. I think, it might be different if teenagers travel on their own and are not in company of an adult.
 

David Tallan

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
1989
For a while when we were walking the Camino Frances in 2016 we were staying in the same albergues as a korean family with kids aged 5 and 7. They didn't seem to have problems with staying at albergues. I have heard that some (non-pilgrim) hostels in major cities have age restrictions.
 
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Deleted member 73526

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YHA rules might serve as an indication of what is reasonable.
Some of the YHA's rules reflect the YHA's culture (e.g. gender segregated dormitories) which doesn't correspond to what's considered reasonable in Spanish albergues.
 
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Tay and I

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Camino Francis " 2018"
My grand daughter ( 11 years ) and I were not presented with any restrictions Oct / Nov 2018 In Albergues (Camino Francis) . I must say , however, that she was never left alone , accompanied to bathroom and not out of my sight .In the larger Albergues, I was less comfortable and often opted for private hostels .
 

JIMMYN

New Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Yes
I hope I can reinvigorate this "children in albergues" thread rather than starting a new thread, especially since I would love to hear opinions of Tay and I and Kiwifamily if your ears are on!

We start a dad-daughter (12 years) SJPP-SDC trek in early June. While we will probably stay mostly in private rooms I hope to expose her to the albergue experience. What safety precautions may be advised? Is there a chance I would end up across a large room, or in a separate room, from my daughter (non-starter for us). How do we make sure that doesn't happen?

Tay and I, your after action report from December alludes to these concerns ("she was never left alone, accompanied to bathroom and not out of my sight"). How can a protective dad make sure his daughter is comfortable and safe?
 

Tay and I

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Camino Francis " 2018"
Hi ,
Tay and I alive and well . Thanks

It us unlikely that you will be across a large room . I always choose a bunk situation so Tay was above me . It is likely though that men are in the bunk next to you - Sleeping bags slip down unexpectedly in the night etc. people come and go from showers in various states of undress .

Tay loved all the people around and the attention and everyone loved her and were kind but the usual parental oversight was necessary . She felt very grown up being included with so many adults around her .

She took her role with daily clothes socks washing and organizing her bed with sheets and her back pack / morning and night and getting up on time to be out by 8am .

We walked sept oct and it was tricky with it being dark on the mornings to get ready by 8 am and also lights off at night was sometimes early too limiting conversations.

BTW - private hostels don’t have early departure times ,they have towels and own toilet and shower . Also lights off time is your own . Conversations are easier etc . Not too much more cost either . It can still be very communal for meals in private hostels.

Recommend you check for bed bugs in every situation . !!

Wishing you all the best . Amazing time
 

Tay and I

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Camino Francis " 2018"
Just ask for one bunk each time . The albergue hosts are usually very helpful . If not don’t stay there .
 
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Via2010

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
06/07 & 12 Camino Francés, 08-10 Via de la Plata, 13/14 & 17 Camino Portugués, 18 Camino Primitivo
When walking with my nephew (then 9 1/2) Easter 2012 we always were able to occupy beds above or opposite each other. I had no problem with him going to the shower or toilet on his own. We experienced both hospitaleros and fellow pilgrims to be extremely helpful.

BC
Alexandra
 

november_moon

Veteran Member
I wouldn't worry about being separated at alberques. You either pick your own bed or the host will assign beds together for people traveling together. The only time they wouldn't is if you are some of the last to arrive and no beds near each other are available. In that case, you could appeal to your fellow pilgrims to switch. Somone will.
 

myku92

New Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Sarria to Santiago (past)
Camino Portugues (April 2019)
My 12 year old son travelled with his grandad 2 years ago when he was 10 (SJP - Burgos), Sarria - Santiago (last year), Porto - Santiago (this year). Never had any issues. He loves meeting lots of ppl from all around the world. The only thing is there aren't really anyone his age and the long evenings after dinner can be quite boring for him.
 

jerbear

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Camino de madrid, camino francis, camino inverino (2012, 2013,2014)
CdM, Francis, San salvador, primativo june 2015 CDM , francis, inverino 2016
Camino madrid, via de Plata. Santiago.
Coast of the dead malpica to muxia
Go. Dont worry. The camino will show you what needs to be. Have faith. Open your hearts and wander.....have fun. Be! Love
 

JAMM

New Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Not enough
I hope I can reinvigorate this "children in albergues" thread rather than starting a new thread, especially since I would love to hear opinions of Tay and I and Kiwifamily if your ears are on!

We start a dad-daughter (12 years) SJPP-SDC trek in early June. While we will probably stay mostly in private rooms I hope to expose her to the albergue experience. What safety precautions may be advised? Is there a chance I would end up across a large room, or in a separate room, from my daughter (non-starter for us). How do we make sure that doesn't happen?

Tay and I, your after action report from December alludes to these concerns ("she was never left alone, accompanied to bathroom and not out of my sight"). How can a protective dad make sure his daughter is comfortable and safe?

We will be travelling with two kids (5 and 8) starting at the end of next week: some private albergues, some public ones and a couple of pensiones. They sleep very well and are early risers so there should be no night-time disturbances for other pilgrims (nor should they be too troubled by others snoring) and will be waking up with most others. The kids know what to expect in albergues: shared bathrooms, people getting changed and walking around in underwear, etc. We think they will not find it uncomfortable but every child is different and my suggestion would be that you have a good discussion with your daughter about this. A 12yr old may feel different to an 8yr old and every individual is different.

I do not have particular fears about safety; we live in a big busy city with all that implies and risk is part of every day life. I think albergues are as safe/risky as many other places we go to every day. Do what you consider reasonable and makes you comfortable while remembering to think about others' comfort too.

As for beds, I remember people changing beds to accommodate others (all grown ups) so I would be surprised if fellow pilgrims did not help out and agree to a change if there is no bunk available for the two of you.

I hope it is a wonderful experience for both of you. Buen camino!
 
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