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Buying Camino Frances guidebook in Madrid (in english)?

jnanamargi

New Member
Hi,
I'm heading for Madrid on Monday, no time to order a Camino Frances guidebook over the web. Do bookshops in Madrid sell english language guides? Or, how about at St Jean Pied de Port?
Thanks in advance,
Glenn
 

ivar

Administrator
Staff member
I think this will be complicated. If you are in the Plaza del Sol area in Madrid, there are two large bookshops that comes to mind. There is one run by El Corte Ingles http://www.elcorteingles.es or by Fnac http://www.fnac.es (located 100 meters from each other).

You may look at their sites to see if they have anything before you go... but I think it is a long shot.

Saludos,
Ivar
 

jnanamargi

New Member
Mmmm, thanks Ivar. If that fails then I may just walk the Camino with no guidebook. A map may be fine. I think this is a valid alternative.
Cheers,
Glenn
 

Deirdre

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Francés (2007), Camino Francés (2008), Camino Portugués (2010), Camino Aragonés - from Lourdes (2012)
Hi Glenn,
I have spent a considerable amount of time in both the bookshops mentioned by Ivar. Unfortunately I have never seen any Camino guidebooks in English in either shop. There are extensive titles and selections in Spanish (obviously), but not in English. There are a couple of international bookstores, one I know near Plaza Alonso Martinez, but I have never looked in those. It is possible that if you search some of the tourist shops in some of the larger towns along the Camino (such as Pamplona, Logroño, Burgos, etc.) you might find a guide in English. Additionally, In FNAC in Madrid, the Spanish guidebook, Guía práctica del peregrino: El Camino de Santiago by Millán Bravo Lozano contains a set of maps to take along with you. The guide book is quite heavy, but the maps are excellent. I used them for my first Camino and found them to be wonderful. Although the maps are in Spanish, they give you distances, names of towns, landmarks and sites of restaurantes, albergues, etc. with symbols rather than words. It would be helpful and certainly discernible even for a non Spanish reader, I think. Good luck,
Buen Camino,
 

JohnnieWalker

Nunca se camina solo
jnanamargi said:
Mmmm, thanks Ivar. If that fails then I may just walk the Camino with no guidebook. A map may be fine. I think this is a valid alternative.
Cheers,
Glenn

Glenn I think this is a really viable alternative - at albergues along the way you will be able to pick up photocopies of elevations of the etapas. But the truth is that on the Camino Frances you don't need a guidebook to walk the route epsecially if you are going to sleep in albergues. Pack light, get to your starting point and then follow the arrows - all will be well.
 

jnanamargi

New Member
Thanks guys. I'll give this some thought but I'm becoming more inclined to go without a guide. I think I'll take it all as it comes and ask people if I need information. Maybe I won't even take a map, just follow the arrows as suggested. A magical mystery tour...
Cheers,
Glenn
 

Arn

Veteran Member
Glenn,

JW has the right of it and I initially had a guide book but left it in Pamploma. I used the two sided, one page, elevation and distance guide I got at the Pilgrims office in SJPDP for daily planning. If you really want more info...look for an over burdened pilgrim and ask to look at one of the three guidebooks they are carrying. They will be glad you did. Sorry for the tongue in cheek remark...well, NOT!

Buen Camino,

Arn
 

jeff001

Active Member
It is certainly possible to navigate the camino without a guidebook but by doing so you will miss out on the opportunity to learn about the rich history and culture of the area you are passing through. For some of us it is worthwhile to know that the bridge the arrow directs you across was built by the Romans more than 2000 years ago or that the church you are passing was built more than 1000 years ago.
 

Arn

Veteran Member
Ah,

Now Jeff001 makes a very valid point. Being focused on mileage and altitude alone, I forgot the value of the additional info in said guides. I will readily admit that the historical and religious significance of the Camino were a key focus of my Camino and I did carry a small guide book on those matters.

I stand corrected.

Thanks jeff001

Arn
 

Javier Martin

Veteran Member
ivar said:
I think this will be complicated. If you are in the Plaza del Sol area in Madrid, there are two large bookshops that comes to mind. There is one run by El Corte Ingles http://www.elcorteingles.es or by Fnac http://www.fnac.es (located 100 meters from each other).

You may look at their sites to see if they have anything before you go... but I think it is a long shot.

Saludos,
Ivar

I know I'm a little late to help Glenn but, for all of you in the same situation, I would try in "La Casa del Libro" in Gran Via Street, very close Puerta del Sol. It's a whole building only for buying books, with a department for travel books (with a section for the pilgrimage theme) and another one for foreign language books.

Buen Camino,

Javier Martin
Madrid, Spain.
 

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