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2019 Camino Guides

Bitten by the (idea of walking the) Camino bug - 5/6/7 days. Need some advice.

Drew1578

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
November (18)
#1
First off howdy -
I'm new to the forum - found it by chance the other day while researching the Camino. From what I've seen so far this seems like a great community with a huge wealth of knowledge.

I've wanted to walk the Camino for years, but never thought I would get a chance (the Frances Camino is a pipe dream) but as I've done more research about the different routes, I realize I could possibly do a shorter walk. The purpose for my walk is an actual pilgrimage so reaching Santiago is my goal I should mention.
There is an off chance I might be about to go the 2nd week in November and considered joining up along the Frances a day or two before Sarria but I feel as though this would be cheating (although I know everyone says you walk your own Camino) since I didn't start in France.
I've also considered the Ingles but not sure November would be a good month for it - weather wise and also I'm afraid there might not be places to stay along the way that late in the season not to mention a fear of not getting my 2 stamps a day!
So not only is weather a factor but so are places to stay on both the Frances and Ingles that late in the year and then there is the limited daylight (I might be talking myself out of this...) BTW - I did find a great site regarding the Ingles - pilgrimagetraveler.com
My other option would be to just hold off until late April or May and either do the Ingles or Primitivo.
It's just flights are so cheap right now to buy for November so it's all very temping and if I'm really going to give it any serious thought I need to start planning now...
Thanks in advance for any help!
 
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (1989 and 2016), Portugues - central from Porto (2018 - planned)
#2
"I feel as though this would be cheating (although I know everyone says you walk your own Camino) since I didn't start in France."

If you aren't starting at your front door it is cheating. :)

The idea that one must start from SJPP is modern and arbitrary. The "half way" monument on the Camino Frances just before Sahagun actually marks half way from Roncesvalles (and presumably the half way certificate available in Sahagun commemorates the same).

That said, it is your Camino. The Camino Portugues is the second most popular Camino, so if you are looking for one that isn't the Frances, you could try that one, starting in Valença in Portugal or somewhere a day or two before that. It seems to me that if it gets more pilgrims than the other non-CF routes, it is likely to have more infrastructure.
 

Anamiri

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances
#3
There are some statistics somewhere from the pilgrim office that state where people started their Camino.
From that you can see that people start in many different places, don't feel pressured to start at any particular point (although you do need to walk the necessary kms to get a Compostela)
 

Anamya

Keeping it simple
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2015)
Camino Portugues (2017)
Lebaniego (Planning)
#4
As said before, starting is France is completely arbitrary, and only became popular in recent yers. For centuries, people just started at their own doors. So, really, DON´T feel like cheating for starting anywhere. There is no more or less 'pilgriness' regarding your starting point.

The Pilgrimage has to suit your time and belief. For the cathedral to give you a Compostela, as long as you walk 100km (or bike 200km) with faith, it's fine. Many other cities are popular starting points, that have good structure for pilgrims.

1-2 days before Sarria would probably place you around Cebreiro, which is an amazing and challenging place to start.

If you opt for another route, the Portuguese Caminio is also beautiful and has good infrastructure.
Whatever you decide, we are here to help!
 
Camino(s) past & future
'Portuguese,Frances,Norte,Salvador/primitivo,Le puy, Inglés, CDM, Invierno, Fin/Mux, VDLP spring19
#5
Howdy @Drew1578
Once you’re bitten, I think you want to scratch it .
I’d grab one of those cheap flights you mentioned and walk one of the suggestions made above. (The Inglés., or last 6 or 7 days of camino Portuguese or Camino frances.). Planning distance from how many klms you expect or want to walk daily).
Stacks of places to check on stages (look up site:

www.gronze.com
Answering your question of getting 2 stamps daily on your credencial... : I know that definitely on the last 2 routes quoted above .. you won’t have a problem ... you can get stamps at pretty much any bar., tourist info office ., many churches etc etc .. some panaderias ., plus where you sleep. Just ask if they have a stamp (sello). Shouldn’t have a problem on Inglés either.


Then, if you need to scratch that itch some more ., you could plan another longer camino at later date.

Go for it!!
Buen Camino
Annie
 

NomadBoomer

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (September 2017), Vdlp (April 2018)
#6
Welcome to the forum. This is the best place to get all of the information you need. I used this to plan my first camino and the advice was just about perfect for me.
I'd plump for walking the end of the Frances. The Frances is the classic and the most popular for a reason. You will probably get hooked and come back to walk other ways.
 

Jan_D

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Aragones (2011)
Frances (2012)
Norte (2013, 2014)
Hospitalera (2014)
Portugues (2017)
#7
There are some statistics somewhere from the pilgrim office that state where people started their Camino.
Here you go: https://oficinadelperegrino.com/en/statistics/
If you scroll down to 'lugar de salida' you'll see the range of starting places. If you change the date to November 2017 at the top of the page ('ver estadisticas') you'll get an idea of pilgrim numbers on the camino paths ('camino seguido') followed in November last year.

I'd probably second NomadBoomer's advice to walk the end of the Frances. Not only is the infrastructure great, but there's also a wonderful sense of camaraderie and camino spirit.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Santiago de Compostela (Sept 2016)
#8
Hi, In 2015 I made a promise to myself that if I survived my life-threatening illness I would go and complete the Camino Frances. I started in September 2016 giving myself six weeks to complete the walk. Ten days in and my father was taken ill so I had to return home. I went back the same time in 2017 and after two weeks of walking my foot became infected and I had to return home. I am now planning my 2018 adventure. The moral of this story is to take life as it comes and do not over think things. My pilgrimage is not the one I planned whilst I was recovering but I am still here to tell the tale. As long as you get what you want out of the experience do not worry about what other people think.....it is your pilgrimage, your experience and ultimately your memories. Go, do what you can and just enjoy the experience. You will meet some fascinating people and have good and bad days but above all learn to be flexible.

Buen Camino

Shirley
 

KinkyOne

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
I'am not perfect, but I'm always myself!!!
#9
You won't have any problems with accommodation and getting two stamps per day on any of the last 100km into Santiago Caminos in November:
- Norte
- Primitivo
- Frances
- Invierno (Monforte de Lemos)
- Sanabres (Ourense)
- Portugues (Valenca/Tui)
- Fisterra/Muxia circuit (or vice versa)
- Ingles (Ferrol)

Buen Camino!
 
Camino(s) past & future
CF-Finisterra-Muxia 2017; SK Camino Kosiče-Levoča Oct 2017; El Norte March 2018; Ingles Nov 2018
#11
Hey I’m seriously thinking of walking the Ingles in November. It will be my third. My dates are flexible so maybe our paths will cross. PM me if you want to chat it out.
 

oursonpolaire

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
2002, Toulouse/Aragon 2005, Cami S Jaume/Aragon 2007/9, Mont Saint Michel/Norte/Vadiniense 2011, Norte/Primitivo 2013, Norte/Primitivo 2014. Norte 2015, Cami S Jaume/Castellano-Aragonese 2016
#12
I can only reiterate what others have said. The Camino begins at your front door. For their own (reasonable IMHO) purposes, the Cathedral's Pilgrimage Office asks that you do the 100km on foot/200km on bicycle to receive a compostela.

In your post, you mention that you are walking the Camino as a pilgrimage. Often Canadian churchgoing pilgrims will begin their pilgrimage with a blessing from their priest and their first sello from their home parish. Any of the Caminos for the 100km leading into Santiago are well-supplied with infrastructure and there are lots of places to get sellos on the way-- town halls, restaurants, churches, bars, etc. After churches, which usually had great designs on their sellos, I liked library or police station sellos, but I can never beat Rebekah Scott's sello from a rabbit abbatoir.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (2015); Ch. d'Arles: Oloron Ste Marie to Aragones; Frances (2016); V.d.l.P.; Sanabres (2017)
#13
I walked the Frances in the fall, arriving in mid to late November in 2015 and 2016. Both times I had trouble with accommodation and meals as I approached Santiago when albergues and some restaurants and food stores were closing for the season. I suggest that you book ahead. For a short walk, this should be possible to do at a reasonable price and will remove any concern about where to stay. November is comfortable for walking, but with early evenings. You don't want to have to look for a place to stay or eat in the dark.
 

Drew1578

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
November (18)
#14
"I feel as though this would be cheating (although I know everyone says you walk your own Camino) since I didn't start in France."

If you aren't starting at your front door it is cheating. :)

The idea that one must start from SJPP is modern and arbitrary. The "half way" monument on the Camino Frances just before Sahagun actually marks half way from Roncesvalles (and presumably the half way certificate available in Sahagun commemorates the same).

That said, it is your Camino. The Camino Portugues is the second most popular Camino, so if you are looking for one that isn't the Frances, you could try that one, starting in Valença in Portugal or somewhere a day or two before that. It seems to me that if it gets more pilgrims than the other non-CF routes, it is likely to have more infrastructure.

I guess I really didn't thing about the front door thing....:rolleyes:
I think I will do the Camino Ingles though - gives me a full "camino" plus the idea of a lesser traveled route sounds appealing. Thanks for your help.
 

Drew1578

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
November (18)
#15
There are some statistics somewhere from the pilgrim office that state where people started their Camino.
From that you can see that people start in many different places, don't feel pressured to start at any particular point (although you do need to walk the necessary kms to get a Compostela)
Thank you!
 

Drew1578

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
November (18)
#16
As said before, starting is France is completely arbitrary, and only became popular in recent yers. For centuries, people just started at their own doors. So, really, DON´T feel like cheating for starting anywhere. There is no more or less 'pilgriness' regarding your starting point.

The Pilgrimage has to suit your time and belief. For the cathedral to give you a Compostela, as long as you walk 100km (or bike 200km) with faith, it's fine. Many other cities are popular starting points, that have good structure for pilgrims.

1-2 days before Sarria would probably place you around Cebreiro, which is an amazing and challenging place to start.

If you opt for another route, the Portuguese Caminio is also beautiful and has good infrastructure.
Whatever you decide, we are here to help!
Thank you Anamya for the info. I'm hoping to steal away 12 days for a trip.
 

Drew1578

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
November (18)
#17
Howdy @Drew1578
Once you’re bitten, I think you want to scratch it .
I’d grab one of those cheap flights you mentioned and walk one of the suggestions made above. (The Inglés., or last 6 or 7 days of camino Portuguese or Camino frances.). Planning distance from how many klms you expect or want to walk daily).
Stacks of places to check on stages (look up site:

www.gronze.com
Answering your question of getting 2 stamps daily on your credencial... : I know that definitely on the last 2 routes quoted above .. you won’t have a problem ... you can get stamps at pretty much any bar., tourist info office ., many churches etc etc .. some panaderias ., plus where you sleep. Just ask if they have a stamp (sello). Shouldn’t have a problem on Inglés either.


Then, if you need to scratch that itch some more ., you could plan another longer camino at later date.

Go for it!!
Buen Camino
Annie

Thank you Annie! I'm going to try for the Ingles. The website is a great help.
 

Drew1578

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
November (18)
#18
Welcome to the forum. This is the best place to get all of the information you need. I used this to plan my first camino and the advice was just about perfect for me.
I'd plump for walking the end of the Frances. The Frances is the classic and the most popular for a reason. You will probably get hooked and come back to walk other ways.
Thanks for the welcome!
This forum is chock full of info.
 

Drew1578

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
November (18)
#19
Here you go: https://oficinadelperegrino.com/en/statistics/
If you scroll down to 'lugar de salida' you'll see the range of starting places. If you change the date to November 2017 at the top of the page ('ver estadisticas') you'll get an idea of pilgrim numbers on the camino paths ('camino seguido') followed in November last year.

I'd probably second NomadBoomer's advice to walk the end of the Frances. Not only is the infrastructure great, but there's also a wonderful sense of camaraderie and camino spirit.
Thanks Jan!
I didn't realize that there was SO much info out there.
 

Drew1578

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
November (18)
#20
Hi, In 2015 I made a promise to myself that if I survived my life-threatening illness I would go and complete the Camino Frances. I started in September 2016 giving myself six weeks to complete the walk. Ten days in and my father was taken ill so I had to return home. I went back the same time in 2017 and after two weeks of walking my foot became infected and I had to return home. I am now planning my 2018 adventure. The moral of this story is to take life as it comes and do not over think things. My pilgrimage is not the one I planned whilst I was recovering but I am still here to tell the tale. As long as you get what you want out of the experience do not worry about what other people think.....it is your pilgrimage, your experience and ultimately your memories. Go, do what you can and just enjoy the experience. You will meet some fascinating people and have good and bad days but above all learn to be flexible.

Buen Camino

Shirley
Thank you Shirley. I can't wait. And all the best on your Camino -
Buen Camino!
 

Drew1578

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
November (18)
#21
You won't have any problems with accommodation and getting two stamps per day on any of the last 100km into Santiago Caminos in November:
- Norte
- Primitivo
- Frances
- Invierno (Monforte de Lemos)
- Sanabres (Ourense)
- Portugues (Valenca/Tui)
- Fisterra/Muxia circuit (or vice versa)
- Ingles (Ferrol)

Buen Camino!
Thanks KO - I see your list and I'm jealous.
 

Drew1578

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
November (18)
#23
Hey I’m seriously thinking of walking the Ingles in November. It will be my third. My dates are flexible so maybe our paths will cross. PM me if you want to chat it out.
Colette - It looks like I might be there on the Ingles in May now...:(
I'm half Slovak and the pilgrimage route in Slovakia looks kinda appealing. I have cousins in Bratislava and Ruzomberok.
 

Drew1578

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
November (18)
#24
I can only reiterate what others have said. The Camino begins at your front door. For their own (reasonable IMHO) purposes, the Cathedral's Pilgrimage Office asks that you do the 100km on foot/200km on bicycle to receive a compostela.

In your post, you mention that you are walking the Camino as a pilgrimage. Often Canadian churchgoing pilgrims will begin their pilgrimage with a blessing from their priest and their first sello from their home parish. Any of the Caminos for the 100km leading into Santiago are well-supplied with infrastructure and there are lots of places to get sellos on the way-- town halls, restaurants, churches, bars, etc. After churches, which usually had great designs on their sellos, I liked library or police station sellos, but I can never beat Rebekah Scott's sello from a rabbit abbatoir.
Yes - I now realize that it does begin at my door. I was in Rome in 2000 (vacation and pilgrimage) and knew when I left Houston I began my pilgrimage....
(I had rabbits growing up - is Rebekah Scott's sello on line somewhere?)
 

Drew1578

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
November (18)
#25
I walked the Frances in the fall, arriving in mid to late November in 2015 and 2016. Both times I had trouble with accommodation and meals as I approached Santiago when albergues and some restaurants and food stores were closing for the season. I suggest that you book ahead. For a short walk, this should be possible to do at a reasonable price and will remove any concern about where to stay. November is comfortable for walking, but with early evenings. You don't want to have to look for a place to stay or eat in the dark.
Thank you for the info. I think I'm going to head over in May - prices for flights won't be a good but there will be more daylight hours and hopefully better weather (trying for the Camino Ingles).
 
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