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Camino del Norte vs CF in May


New Member
Year of past OR future Camino
CN or CF (may 2020)
Hi all! I’m having trouble deciding between the Camino Frances and the Camino del Norte for my first camino. I’m planning to do walk starting in early May. I am definitely interested in meeting other walkers on my way, but I do not like big crowds.
The Camino del Norte is appealing to me, since part of my family is originally from Asturias. However, I’m nervous that there will not be too many people on the route, and I’ll spend many days walking alone. I’ve also heard that there is more pavement walking than the CF, which will be hard on my knees.
The CF sounds beautiful as well with great infrastructure. My concern there is that going in May, especially towards the end of my camino, it will be crowded and I will be rushed to get accommodations. Would love to hear thoughts from folks who have done one or both. Thank you!
Camino Way Markers
Original Camino Way markers made in bronze. Two models, one from Castilla & Leon and the other from Galicia.
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Camino Chrissy

Take one step forward...then keep on walking..
Year of past OR future Camino
Frances 2015;
Norte/Primitivo 2016;
Frances 2017;
Le Puy 2018;
Portuguese/FishermanTr. 2019
I have done both and love them both. I am very happy that I started my Camino adventures with the Frances and it is my personal recommendation, even if busier. The experience is just very unique! The Norte is beautiful, but in mid April we did not see many walkers during the day, although there were more staying in the albergues at night.


New Member
Year of past OR future Camino
El Norte (May 2020)
Hi Nora, I’ll be doing my first Camino at the start of May and I chose el Norte as I’ve traveled through some of the countryside of both el Francés and el Norte in the past and I just loved the countryside of el Norte. The coastal scenery, the greenery, the greater physical challenge and less people are the factors that decided it for me. Who knows if it’s the right choice or not, but intrinsically it feels right for me. I’m sure you’ll have a great time whichever you choose.

Martin 888

Year of past OR future Camino
Camino Frances 2019, Camino Frances 2020, Camino del Norte 2021
Hello, I walked the Frances last year and had the most amazing journey and loved every moment. I was thinking of walking the Norte this year (I’m now completely Camino gets you like that) as we know the northern coast really well and the landscape, towns and villages are spectacular. However, I have decided to repeat the Frances this year because 2021 is a Holy Year in the Catholic faith and while I am neither Catholic or particularly religious, I understand that during a Holy Year, this swells the numbers on all the Camino routes considerably. So, I have decided to repeat the Frances in 2020 (the most popular) and head out on the Norte in 2021 (a way less travelled) as this will likely see numbers on the Norte which will be higher than maybe normal but way less than the busy Camino Frances. That’s my logic.....I thought I would share to help your decision making because believe me, once you’ve walked one Camino, you are going to want to return ! Buen Camino. P S....if you want to hear me talk about the above and pass on all sorts of tips and advice for new peregrinos, I was interviewed on episode 26 of ‘the Pilgrims’s Podcast’ a couple of weeks’ll find it on either google or search podcasts on this forum.

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