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Christmas Camino Mozárabe from Jaen Questions

Year of past OR future Camino
Frances (14), Portuguese (15), Le Puy (17), Ingles (17), VDLP (18), Lana (18), Madrid (19) + more
Hello,

I'm hoping that all the kinks regarding international travel from Canada will be resolved by December. Fingers crossed that direct flights from Toronto to Madrid will also resume!

If so, I am thinking of walking a Christmas Camino from Jaen to Merida on the Mozarabe.

The last few Decembers that I walked up near Galicia were very rainy! I would love to complete the Lebaniego/Valdiense or Olvidado or but I don't want to face issues with snow travel in the mountains. Another time! :)

My question is if a two-week Camino at the end of December will pose any challenges in terms of weather. Also, if the Christmas holiday season would cause any disruption for walking the route. I would take a train to Jaen from Madrid (and train from Merida back).

I haven't looked into budget accommodation options yet, but am happy to bring a tent if necessary. :)

Thank you for any insights!
 
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Raggy

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2021
Because of festivities around Christmas, New Year, and the feast of the Kings, you may find stores closed often. I remember one pilgrim who left Almeria on or around New Years Day a couple of years ago was unable to an open grocery store or restaurant in the small towns until January 7th. (The Almeria angels helped her out).

I don't think a tent will be comfortable, with low temperatures down to freezing at that time of year,. Fortunately, I think there are enough accommodation options - assuming that everything reopens. Before Cordoba the albergue network isn't as extensive, but there are cheap hotels. TO be honest, I have doubts that the albergue network will be working. In theory it is year round but with the new santiary requirements, they may not be able to open the un-manned albergues unless they have someone to clean daily.

Have you thought about the Lycian way in Turkey? Better climate. I can't speak to the security for a solo female walker, though. You would need to speak to people who really know the situation in Turkey.

East Coast of Taiwan I CAN highly recommend...
 

LTfit

Veteran Member
Quite a few years ago my daughter walked a week from Sevilla along the Plata during the first week of January. The weather was neither rainy nor wet but who knows this year!l Enough albergues were open along the Plata but this year along the Mozárabe may be more difficult. I am now walking the Primitivo although I originally wanted to walk the Mozárabe from Almería to Mérida but after contacting the Amigos Association I decided against it. There are some walking now per their Facebook page and apparently there are enough private accommodations, but I didn't want to miss out on the wonderful network of public albergues as they are all closed.
 
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Year of past OR future Camino
Frances (14), Portuguese (15), Le Puy (17), Ingles (17), VDLP (18), Lana (18), Madrid (19) + more
Thank you very much Raggy and LTfit for your comments!

It is possible for me to carry food in my backpack, but I would be disappointed to miss out on sampling local cuisine along the route. (plus coffee and beer breaks!) Private accommodations are alright, but I also prefer pilgrim-specific Albergue lodging.

I have cancelled two Lycian Way trips in the past (once due to unrest in Turkey and once due to pandemic) and am hopeful I can walk it in the next couple of years. Taiwan is one of the few countries in that region of East Asia I haven't visited yet, it is also on my list! :)

I am keen to be on some kind of Camino before the end of 2021. My heart misses it!!!
I'll reach out the Jaen Facebook page. :)
 

Raggy

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2021
The Jaen association is great, and I am sure they'll extend a warm welcome to you. They might have some ideas of what the future looks like in terms of albergues re-opening, but bear in mind that they are directly involved with only a short stretch of the route - from Jaen (with one youth hostel), through Martos (I forget what the accommodation there is) and Alcaudete (with a cheap hotel - also Peter probably accommodates pilgrims at his casa de acogida but it is no longer in the guidebooks).

From Baena onwards, you are in the hands of the Cordoba and Badajoz associations. Both good IME. They would be the people to contact if you want to know what's happening with the albergues from Baena to Merida.

I am all about encouraging people to walk the Camino Mozarabe, but when it comes to a festive season Camino Mozarabe with potential post-COVID complications, I think it would be wrong of me to say anything more encouraging than "wait and see."

I'm doing a zoom call with a French-speaking group soon and we have invited some folks from associations in Andalusia to tell us how they see things unfolding in the coming months with regard to albergues and so on. I will report what I learn.
 
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LesBrass

Likes Walking
Year of past OR future Camino
yes...
Thank you very much Raggy and LTfit for your comments!

It is possible for me to carry food in my backpack, but I would be disappointed to miss out on sampling local cuisine along the route. (plus coffee and beer breaks!) Private accommodations are alright, but I also prefer pilgrim-specific Albergue lodging.

I have cancelled two Lycian Way trips in the past (once due to unrest in Turkey and once due to pandemic) and am hopeful I can walk it in the next couple of years. Taiwan is one of the few countries in that region of East Asia I haven't visited yet, it is also on my list! :)

I am keen to be on some kind of Camino before the end of 2021. My heart misses it!!!
I'll reach out the Jaen Facebook page. :)

If I do get to Patagonia in November I fly home into Madrid on the 7th December... Fancy a walking Buddy? :cool: 🚶‍♀️
 

Raggy

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2021
I'm doing a zoom call with a French-speaking group soon and we have invited some folks from associations in Andalusia to tell us how they see things unfolding in the coming months with regard to albergues and so on. I will report what I learn.
Update - We had our zoom teleconference on Friday (18/jun). I uploaded a recording (in three parts) to Facebook. I think it is available publicly. I regret it's in French and Spanish only:

Important points that Mercedes from the Almeria association shared (in part 2 of the video) -
  • Only two municipal albergues are open at the moment between Almeria and Cordoba Merida. They are Alboloduy and Alcaracejos.
  • It is possible to stay at private accommodations - as listed in the guide which the association published. They are operating with reduced capacity and in accordance with sanitary requirements.
  • It is vital that pilgrims plan in advance and call ahead to the private accommodations to reserve places. You cannot guarantee that you will find a place to stay if you just show up.
  • For albergues to open, they need hospitaleros on site to ensure compliance with the rules - including limits to people staying, cleaning of facilities, use of masks and alcohol gel etc.
  • Even if the albergues are open, the public spaces *(kitchen / living room etc.) are off limits.
It looks like this situation will continue to October at least. After that, perhaps rules will change depending on the roll out of vaccines / state of pandemic.

If someone wants to spend some time in rural Andalusia, as a volunteer hospitalero, I can put you in touch with the Almeria association. They would need to discuss it with you to ensure that you know what you're taking on. Hospitaleros would need have to be fully vaccinated, with experience of the Camino Mozarabe *(or possibly another southern camino). I guess the usual conditions also apply - ability to speak Spanish and training to be a hospitalero.

Perhaps I should announce this in a thread of its own?

[EDIT: Changed text above to "between Almeria and Merida"]
 
Last edited:
Year of past OR future Camino
Frances (14), Portuguese (15), Le Puy (17), Ingles (17), VDLP (18), Lana (18), Madrid (19) + more
Update - We had our zoom teleconference on Friday (18/jun). I uploaded a recording (in three parts) to Facebook. I think it is available publicly. I regret it's in French and Spanish only:

Important points that Mercedes from the Almeria association shared (in part 2 of the video) -
  • Only two municipal albergues are open at the moment between Almeria and Cordoba. They are Alboloduy and Alcaracejos.
  • It is possible to stay at private accommodations - as listed in the guide which the association published. They are operating with reduced capacity and in accordance with sanitary requirements.
  • It is vital that pilgrims plan in advance and call ahead to the private accommodations to reserve places. You cannot guarantee that you will find a place to stay if you just show up.
  • For albergues to open, they need hospitaleros on site to ensure compliance with the rules - including limits to people staying, cleaning of facilities, use of masks and alcohol gel etc.
  • Even if the albergues are open, the public spaces *(kitchen / living room etc.) are off limits.
It looks like this situation will continue to October at least. After that, perhaps rules will change depending on the roll out of vaccines / state of pandemic.

If someone wants to spend some time in rural Andalusia, as a volunteer hospitalero, I can put you in touch with the Almeria association. They would need to discuss it with you to ensure that you know what you're taking on. Hospitaleros would need have to be fully vaccinated, with experience of the Camino Mozarabe *(or possibly another southern camino). I guess the usual conditions also apply - ability to speak Spanish and training to be a hospitalero.

Perhaps I should announce this in a thread of its own?


Raggy, you are a superstar! Thank you for all the details!

If my Spanish language skills were better I would love to spend time as a volunteer hospitalero on the Mozarabe. I hope that they find some suitable people to assist with this awesome Camino route! :)
 
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