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Choosing day rest towns

Katia Taam

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Every year, since 2000. Most times portuguese camino also twice the french camiño. Two time Le Puy .
I´ve been going through some knee problems and as I am planning to walk from Le Puy to SJPP next April I know I'll have to stop for some rest more often.
Can you help me in choosing nice places to stop for a day rest?
Figeac and Moissac are already on my list...
Thanks
Katia
 

SeekingPurpose

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
July 2020 Le Puy-en-Velay
Hi Katia, I'm currently hiking the route from Le Puy and I am on my 10th day. I was not well prepared and my backpack was heavy partly because I am camping, but after sending home a parcel of 3kgs to lighten my load, my body is starting to get used to longer hikes, today I managed 27km from Aumont-Aubrac to Nasbinals. The earlier part of the route until Aumont-Aubrac is very hilly, a lot of big ascends and descends and I say this just to suggest that you don't overestimate your distance in the beginning. I am a total novice, and perhaps you are much more experienced, but I thought I would share my experience in case it can help. I know this doesn't really answer your question, perhaps I will have more information as I continue my journey.
Best regards,
Andrew
 

Katia Taam

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Every year, since 2000. Most times portuguese camino also twice the french camiño. Two time Le Puy .
Thanks Andrew. I've walked this route already but then I had good knees 🙁
Now I know I´ll have to stop more often so that my knees support me all the way to SJPP 😀
My problem now is how to choose the places were to stop.
Are you writing a blog of some sort?? How is the camino?
Thanks again
Katia
 

NorthernLight

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Le Puy to Santiago via the Frances 2012-2013. EPW2015
Aragonese & Frances 2016
Burgos to Muxia 2017
The answer partly depends on whether you want your rest days to be completely restful (in which case the less there is to do, the better) or provide opportunity to explore.

Often, if I come across a village that captures my interest, I’ll simply stop for the day, even if that means I only walked a short distance. I’m more in favour of two shorter days than a complete zero distance day.
 

Katia Taam

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Every year, since 2000. Most times portuguese camino also twice the french camiño. Two time Le Puy .
Well, that was my choice also, when I could walk not knowing that I had knees.... But now I do need a rest day, not to stay completely restful but just to explore the town...
 

NorthernLight

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Le Puy to Santiago via the Frances 2012-2013. EPW2015
Aragonese & Frances 2016
Burgos to Muxia 2017
I loved the Aubrac region and recommend slow days there just to savour it.

The Miam Miam Dodo guide is an excellent reference for plotting your stages. It’s designed to be useful and language doesn’t hinder. I liked all the villages, and the slightly larger towns should serve your purposes.
 

OzAnnie

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
'CP, Frances,Norte,Salv/prim;Le puy, Inglés, CDM, Invierno, Fin/Mux, Vdlp 2019>Táb/ Prt Levante 2020
I´ve been going through some knee problems and as I am planning to walk from Le Puy to SJPP next April I know I'll have to stop for some rest more often.
Can you help me in choosing nice places to stop for a day rest?
Figeac and Moissac are already on my list...
Thanks
Katia
Le Puy is so full of interesting places that I’d agree with @NorthernLight ‘s suggestion of shorter days. That’s if you have the time ..
Also; you could check out the search function (here on forum) for previous similar questions for favourite stops along the Le Puy route.

Of course.,depending how you are arriving at Le Puy. If, en route -you come via ‘Lyon’... then there’s a perfect place to check out.
Then ‘Le Puy’ itself. I stayed 2 nights there. Plenty to see..
Apart from the places you’ve already noted you could add Conques, (approx 10 day walk from Le Puy) - generally has many more walkers (that is pilgrims + other walkers ).. before Conques the place called ‘Estaing’ had a period festival on the day I walked there. It made my memory very colourful. Cahors and Condom come up in my minds eye (I walked in 2016) - so not my latest walk or memories .
Just beautiful all the way though - I had company of changing groups of pilgrims as some of them left to return home along the way - company sure adds colour and experience to the memories.

One place that you might miss if your knees are giving you grief or if it is too hot (as was the case for me on that occasion); is the stage leaving Conques to Decazeville- It is quite a climb I believe. I took a ride that day., in the van which carried backpacks along the route.
On this camino I found that it was possible to ride with the backpack if needed.

I’d suggest you get the numbers of the carriers before you leave in case you need it for your pack.
I didn’t need it for my pack until I developed ‘corns’ between my toes ‘aaarrgh!!’ & couldn’t bear much wait on my feet; which was 7 days before I finished in SJPdP . I also have knee problems and back problems but find ‘easy as she goes ‘ helps & carry as little weight in pack as possible. I find the hip belt and pack seems to help my back over days on the road.

Best wishes
It’s a route I would love to walk again.
Annie
 

SeekingPurpose

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
July 2020 Le Puy-en-Velay
Thanks Andrew. I've walked this route already but then I had good knees 🙁
Now I know I´ll have to stop more often so that my knees support me all the way to SJPP 😀
My problem now is how to choose the places were to stop.
Are you writing a blog of some sort?? How is the camino?
Thanks again
Katia
I have a thread - Spontaneous Camino - which has given me a lot of support and made me very grateful for this virtual community, but other than that I don't plan on blogging about my experience. I started off without any real idea what to expect, no planning and an overweight backpack, the first day was very tough and I had to rest the day after, but each day it gets better especially after lightening my backpack. The weather has been good and I love being out in the countryside, it is very therapeutic. Also meeting a lot of really nice people along the way is very uplifting. I can see why people are so enthusiastic about this experience. Best wishes!
 

AJGuillaume

Pèlerin du monde
Camino(s) past & future
Via Gebennensis (2018)
Via Podiensis (2018)
Voie Nive Bidassoa (2018)
Camino Del Norte (2018)
I´ve been going through some knee problems and as I am planning to walk from Le Puy to SJPP next April I know I'll have to stop for some rest more often.
Can you help me in choosing nice places to stop for a day rest?
Figeac and Moissac are already on my list...
Thanks
Katia
Hello @Katia Taam , we walked in 2018, and I would add: Conques, Cahors, Navarrenx.
Bon chemin!
 

Kitsambler

Jakobsweg Junkie
Camino(s) past & future
Le Puy 2010-11, Prague 2012, Nuremberg 2013, Einsiedeln 2015, Geneva 2017-19
One of the issues on the Le Puy route is that the towns are spaced further apart than on the Camino Frances. So actually, taking a rest day is more feasible than taking shorter days (I averaged around 15 km/day and it would be tough, most days, to do less than that -- sometimes more is needed).

Those camping have more options as to sleep spots, but that mode presents its own set of challenges and is probably not the choice for bad knees.
 

lt56ny

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF(2012) Le Puy/CF (2015) Portugues (2017) Norte (2018) CF (2019) VDLP?
Thanks Andrew. I've walked this route already but then I had good knees 🙁
Now I know I´ll have to stop more often so that my knees support me all the way to SJPP 😀
My problem now is how to choose the places were to stop.
Are you writing a blog of some sort?? How is the camino?
Thanks again
Katia
I have walked this route and I will give you a few suggestions. Firstly I do not have bad knees but I am 66 years old. You are an experienced pilgrim so you know your body and you know how to walk. Please listen to your body and I think I have learned that if I stop for even just 10 minutes when I start to feel some continuous pain somewhere (Usually no more than a minute or two in one spot) it seems to help quite a bit and keeps me fresh especially early on while I am still getting my camino legs. This usually takes me about 10 days. I try to keep my distances for the first few weeks a maximum of about 23K. The Le Puy route, for me, was much more challenging than either the CF or the CP. There are alot more up and downs. But the scenery and the solitude pay off is worth it. Poles are a must and zig zag on the downhills. The other things that have been mentioned before is to get the Miam Miam Dodo guide that will give you a very good breakdown of towns, gites/albergues/pensions etc and services. There is something to be said for taking both a day off completely and walking two short days in a row. I have been doing a mixture of both on my last two caminos. The other point someone else mentioned is that there are less services and towns so it may be necessary to take a day off when you have pain because there is not a town a short distance away. I think that if you are having pain a complete rest day would be more beneficial for you than two short days, I walk the two short days in a row when it is only fatigue that I feel and not pain. My next camino will be the Via De La Plata (as soon as there is a vaccine) and I will have to follow the same advice as you as services and towns are scarcer then the more well traveled Caminos. Buen Camino.
 

gittiharre

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF Austria Czech Le Puy Geneva RLS V. Jacobi V. Regia V. Baltica/Scandinavica Porto Muxia
I´ve been going through some knee problems and as I am planning to walk from Le Puy to SJPP next April I know I'll have to stop for some rest more often.
Can you help me in choosing nice places to stop for a day rest?
Figeac and Moissac are already on my list...
Thanks
Katia
I have done the Le Puy Route 3 times.
Rather than just rest days in the bigger towns, include Conques Cahors and Condom, I would progress very slowly through the Aubrac as far as Conques. These are the hiiliest, steepest and most magnificent parts. Nasbinals is a pretty place to stop, so is Estaing. Personally, I have always liked moving forward every day, even as a short stage, rather than a full rest day. Some days, I just do 8 or 10 km and then have the afternoon for exploring.
Personally, I find it hard going again after a total rest day...
 

Katia Taam

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Every year, since 2000. Most times portuguese camino also twice the french camiño. Two time Le Puy .
I have walked this route and I will give you a few suggestions. Firstly I do not have bad knees but I am 66 years old. You are an experienced pilgrim so you know your body and you know how to walk. Please listen to your body and I think I have learned that if I stop for even just 10 minutes when I start to feel some continuous pain somewhere (Usually no more than a minute or two in one spot) it seems to help quite a bit and keeps me fresh especially early on while I am still getting my camino legs. This usually takes me about 10 days. I try to keep my distances for the first few weeks a maximum of about 23K. The Le Puy route, for me, was much more challenging than either the CF or the CP. There are alot more up and downs. But the scenery and the solitude pay off is worth it. Poles are a must and zig zag on the downhills. The other things that have been mentioned before is to get the Miam Miam Dodo guide that will give you a very good breakdown of towns, gites/albergues/pensions etc and services. There is something to be said for taking both a day off completely and walking two short days in a row. I have been doing a mixture of both on my last two caminos. The other point someone else mentioned is that there are less services and towns so it may be necessary to take a day off when you have pain because there is not a town a short distance away. I think that if you are having pain a complete rest day would be more beneficial for you than two short days, I walk the two short days in a row when it is only fatigue that I feel and not pain. My next camino will be the Via De La Plata (as soon as there is a vaccine) and I will have to follow the same advice as you as services and towns are scarcer then the more well traveled Caminos. Buen Camino.
Actually I have bad knees and I am 68 years old LOL...
You are so right, it is important to listen our body. Le Puy is a tough way and it is the best. I can't even think of not being able to walk it again.
Thanks a lot for your advice...
 

BlackRocker57

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Le Puy route 2014; Le Puy route continuation 2016; Le Puy route 2017; Le Puy route 2019 [incl. Célé]
G’Day Katia😊
I also have problems with my knees so I understand exactly where you are coming from with this question ...

To answer your question : I agree wholeheartedly with AG above ... Conques, Cahors and Navarrenx. «le Renard Vagabond» who is posting daily videos from the Le Puy route in the Compostelle FB group, and who some of us have been following with enthusiasm, had a rest day at Saint-Côme-d’Olt ... so that got me to thinking 🤔

Last year, I took an extended break of four nights at Montcuq and loved it ... spent a lot of time taking photos of old door and interesting door-knockers but that’s another story ...

At Cahors you have several options for excursions on the river ... I did that in 2014 and it was excellent ... a great way to see the town and the river and the magnificent Pont Valentré from another perspective ...

Lectoure [with thermal baths] also worthy of consideration ...

Best regards et bon chemin 👣👣👣
 

lt56ny

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF(2012) Le Puy/CF (2015) Portugues (2017) Norte (2018) CF (2019) VDLP?
Actually I have bad knees and I am 68 years old LOL...
You are so right, it is important to listen our body. Le Puy is a tough way and it is the best. I can't even think of not being able to walk it again.
Thanks a lot for your advice...
Well, you are alot older than me and as I said I am only 66!!! You are in for a treat in France. It will cost more money because of the gites but besides having the most wonderful sights every day the food in France is beyond wow, especially in many of the gites. This is no knock on the food anywhere else but when you are getting meals every night that include the wonderful French wine, soup, salads, a big assortment of cheeses on a platter, the most amazing bread on earth, main course, fruits, and homemade desserts. Forget about it. I have had goose and duck and amazing traditional country dishes, all fresh and almost every night the ingredients are coming straight from the garden in the back yard. Almost every night I could get seconds of anything. In the morning I would get a full breakfast with fresh coffee, often homemade jams, eggs, ham etc, of course some more bread and fruit. If there was food left over from the night before and sometimes if there wasn't for just a few euros your host would pack a lunch for you too. I walked 5 years ago and for all this and sleeping in a single bed in rooms that never had more than 5 or 6 pilgrims I paid between 27 and about 35 Euros. Well worth it to say the least. Now I don't know what you will pay. I can't speak a word of French and most days there was no English to be heard anywhere but I still loved it. Most pilgrims are our age too.
 

alhartman

346 joyful days in Spain and France since 2005
Camino(s) past & future
Hope so!
My Favorite route!!. I have never been fond of 'planned rest days' but have often toured a nice city coming in or going out on a short (less than 10k) day. LePuy has lots of great towns but I cannot recall a single one that called to me for more than a half day--same with Pamplona, Legrono, Burgos, Leon, and Astorga.
So I let my body determine rest days, but leave enough in my schedule to spend half days in Conques, Cahors, Figeac, Moissac, Condom, etc
bon chemin................al
 

Donna T

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Piedmont 2021
Hi Katia, I'm currently hiking the route from Le Puy and I am on my 10th day. I was not well prepared and my backpack was heavy partly because I am camping, but after sending home a parcel of 3kgs to lighten my load, my body is starting to get used to longer hikes, today I managed 27km from Aumont-Aubrac to Nasbinals. The earlier part of the route until Aumont-Aubrac is very hilly, a lot of big ascends and descends and I say this just to suggest that you don't overestimate your distance in the beginning. I am a total novice, and perhaps you are much more experienced, but I thought I would share my experience in case it can help. I know this doesn't really answer your question, perhaps I will have more information as I continue my journey.
Best regards,
Andrew
Hello Andrew, I am curious about your walk and camping experience as I am hoping to follow your route starting at the end of September. I have ordered a tent and hope to try a few hikes before leaving for Le Puy but I have No Idea about open hostel accommodation or camping on this route, I just want to go walking. Andrew I will appreciate your knowledge and keep following your posts.
Best Wishes, Donna, Co Derry
 

SeekingPurpose

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
July 2020 Le Puy-en-Velay
Hi Donna,
I have found that thus far there are campgrounds at reasonable hiking distances from each other. I am using Miam Miam Dodo (route guidebook) to help to locate them, but there are usually signs in the towns and villages, and I also use Google maps. Most campgrounds are also quite inexpensive around 6 euros, although there are some that are more expensive so far I saw one that asking 17 euros. I have not pre-booked any of my campsites, and except for the one in St Come-d'Olt, which was full and expensive, I have found most have plenty of space. You will usually need to have a roll of toilet paper which is often not provided at many campsites. Regarding the Gîtes in Chanaleilles I was one of several campers there and St Come-d'Olt where it was indicated in the guidebook listing that they accepted tents and I am sure that some others may offer the possibility for camping. Also the Gîtes offer decent meals which is really welcome sometimes. The biggest challenge for a camper is to keep the weight of your backpack down. There are services which can carry your bag, but I have not used them. I am trying to keep my costs as low as possible and because I am gluten intolerant and vegetarian I tend to carry some food items as well, which also adds weight unfortunately. I did mail a parcel of 3kg mostly clothing home, so it's easy to take more than you need. I am also using wooden hiking sticks which I got in Le Puy and I recommend, there are a lot of steep inclines and declines, some quite slippery too, so the sticks can give extra stability, and they help me walking too.
One last important thing is to take your time and find your own comfort level, some hikers can go 30 or 40km a day, I am able to go about 20km, but when I began 10km was my limit. In my opinion it's necessary to have rest days too if you plan on making your hike longer than a week.
Good luck!
Andrew
 

Lleslie

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2014)
Camino Via Podiensis (2018)
We walked this route in 2018 and loved it😊 We only had one full day off which was in Figeac - great market - and several half days, walking shorter days instead of another full day, leaving the afternoon to rest or explore the village/town. One half day was in Lectoure where we spent the afternoon at the spa baths - really relaxing. They have a pilgrim rate which includes a cheap bathing costume if you need it. Another half day was in Conques - would have a full day next time to really explore and take it in and another half day was in Navarrenx - we were lucky to enjoy a folk festival there. Great food and accommodation in the gites and the lovely French very forgiving about our very limited language skills. Bon Chemin, Linda😊
 

Donna T

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Piedmont 2021
Hello Andrew, you seem to have found your rhythm and are enjoying walking from Le Puy, thank you for your information. Over a few years I have walked sections of several Caminos mostly in Spain but I have NEVER camped. Due to Covid 19 I thought this year pilgrim accommodation would not be open and it would be necessary to camp? I am a solo traveller and friends and family are not at all keen about my idea of camping and now I am even wondering about it myself? I do know however I want to walk from Le Puy to Conques at least.
Andrew I will keep following your progress which will help me guage the feeling on this walk during these most unusual times,
Bon Chemin, Donna
 

SeekingPurpose

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
July 2020 Le Puy-en-Velay
Due to Covid 19 I thought this year pilgrim accommodation would not be open and it would be necessary to camp? I am a solo traveller and friends and family are not at all keen about my idea of camping and now I am even wondering about it myself? I do know however I want to walk from Le Puy to Conques at least.

Hi Donna, I arrived in Conques yesterday late afternoon (14 days after leaving Le Puy) and I am spending a second night here too, I wanted to rest a bit and it was about 38 degrees C today, so I am glad I took a day off. Also gave me a chance to see the town early morning when it was cooler and quiet. I think most Gîtes are open, of course we don't know if the Covid-19 will change, but I can imagine that you'd be more comfortable staying in the Gîtes and without a tent and a sleeping bag to carry your bag will be a lot lighter too which is definitely a big plus. You will also feel more connected to other Pilgrims as well.
 

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