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New Member
I am planning to walk the Camino from Roncavalles to Santiago in July 06. I am thinking of camping. Is this possible? Are there enough places to ccamp that would make carrying a small tent worthwhile?



Staff member
Hi Ray, welcome to the forum!

I know we have had some thoughts on tents on el camino Frances earlier, please have a look here:


.. it sounded like our member "bsaa77" did walk with the tent so you might want to try and get in touch with him and see how this worked out for him (you will find a link to his e-mail under his post in the link above. By the way, this link is only available if you are logged in).

Does anyone have anything to add to this?

I hope this helps and welcome to Santiago :)

Since there appears to be an infestation of bedbugs in some of the hostels along the route, I was thinking of camping as well. But one of the books I read, said that it is difficult to find places that will let you pitch your tent. Any information out there?


Staff member
I got a message from one of our members (bsaa77) regarding his experiences with tents when he did his camino (May/June 2005). He wrote me in Norwegian, so here is a translation of some of the points that he made:

- He brought with him from Norway a tent. When he arrived to Pamplona he mailed it home, and it seems like he did not regret it.

- It seemed like his original pack was 20kg, he mailed home 7kg so he was left with a pack of 13kg.

- He loved the social experience with the albergues, meeting other pilgrims and did not miss his tent.

Here is bsaa77's contact info:

Buen Camino!
Hi Ray,

I've walked twice (4 weeks each), once on the Frances and the other on a combo Poutugal/via de la plata route. I brought a tent both times and used it once. Though I was glad that I had it the one time we needed it, I wouldn't bring it again - too much overhead for too little use....

Good luck!

John P.


Active Member
I don't think you need a tent on the camino frances, but it may be handy if sometimes the whole communal experience is a bit too overwhelming. I walked the camino del Norte/camino Primitivo with a donkey, and it was essential there. Mind you, the donkey did carry the tent :)
Hi all

I don't plan to take a tent (starting from StJPdP on 15th May) but a good night's sleep is more important to me than saving half a Kg so I will be carrying a small thermarest and a space blanket just in case I ever have to kip down in a doorway or under a hedge. I'm still trying to decide whether to regain some of the weight by buying a fancy 1 season down bag to go with my silk liner.

Look forward to meeting some of you!



New Member
slmiller said:
Since there appears to be an infestation of bedbugs in some of the hostels along the route, I was thinking of camping as well. But one of the books I read, said that it is difficult to find places that will let you pitch your tent. Any information out there?
Does anyone know if this a prevalent problem in the hostels/alberges? My husband and I will be doing el camino this late June or early July and I'm allergic to most bug bites, so it makes me a little nervous.
I travelled with a group last year (and am going again this year) and we camped at seven spots from O'Cebreiro to Santiago. We did have a support vehicle, which took the tents and other bulky equipment, but I don't think there were any problems camping at any of the places we stopped (although I wasn't the one talking to the albergue staff!).

Would a list be helpful?



Maggie Ramsay
Camino(s) past & future
Santiago de Compostela (2005) Via Francigena (2010) Le Puy to St Jean (2014)
Hi Barbara
How interesting about the donkey. Where did you pick it up, and where did you leave it t the end? Was it a practical thing to do?


Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
2002 CF: 2004 from Paris: 2006 VF: 2007 CF: 2009 Aragones, Ingles, Finisterre: 2011 X 2 on CF: 2013 'Caracoles': 2014 CF and Ingles 'Caracoles":2015 Logrono-Burgos (Hospitalero San Anton): 2016 La Douay to Aosta/San Gimignano to Rome:


Active Member
Walking with a donkey

I walked with my own donkey, but there are a lot of places in France where you can hire a donkey, and they can arrange return transport. Join my Yahoo group if you like.....
a good site is also bourricot.com , easier if you read french tho
A friend of mine walks with a group of 9. They make their Camino Frances in different periods of 10 - 12 days. This year they will reach Santiago. They sleep in 5 tents, and have an assistant who transports the tents by car and dresses them. Mostly they camp on camping sites.
There are no camping sites in Palas De Rei, Melide and Arzua.
So my friend is looking for alternative camping sites in those places.

Suggestions, anyone? Thanks!

There is a large meadow behind the albergue at Ribadiso, about 2km before Arzua.

I know - I've passed there twice and twice it was full ! OK, the first time we arrived about 7:30pm, so we really couldn't expect anything else! So I/we slept outside - once borrowing a poncho to protect my sleeping bag, but I now carry a lightish-weight bivvi at about 300g. I fully expect to sleep outside here again this summer when my Camino Primativo joins the CF.

Both times there were groups camped here - so they seem to expect and accept it.


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