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First Camino, Need some advice

Deshi

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
mid May 2018
#1
With little time to plan, we are 2 ladies intending to set out on Camino Portugal on May 15 for about 2 weeks. We are first timer on the Camino. Living our whole life in cities. Been reading for a few days the posts in this forum, very grateful for so many helpful and inspiring pilgrims sharing information and stories.

Our plan/idea so far is to fly into Porto and have a couple days of easy distance walk from there. Will only book the albergues for first few nights’ and see where our feet take us. It’s the journey we care for not really the end point (at least not this first trip).

(1) We would like to do the Camino Portugal but not sure if we should take the coastal or inland route.

(2) Major concern is our safety but also our inexperience with the countryside/woods/navigation/language, we wonder if we should just join the crowd and walk the Camino Francés instead, but we are not very enthusiastic to be surrounded by people and noise most of the time.

(3) Read that walk along the coast is walking for many km/few days on the beach front broadwalk.
Is this info correct? I could have read wrongly. Need to get a guide book by this week.

Thanks in advance for all your help.
 

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surya8

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Portugues Central, Porto-Santiago, Apr-May 2017
Camino Portugues, Lisbon-Porto, Oct 2017
#2
Get the Brierley guide, it was very helpful on my two Portuguese Caminos. Most of Portugues speak reasonable English, you don't need to worry about communication, and most of it will be in the albergues anyway with the international crowd. Don't swap it for the French way unless you specifically want to walk it, the Portuguese way is self-sufficient, easy and VERY safe to walk, with great infrastructure, beautifil towns on the way, great food and the wearther in May should be fabulus, the way is very well marked. I started my first day of my first Camino there exactly a year ago to the same day! Grand memories! You can try both ways actually, if you walk the first day out of Porto along the ocean to Vila do Conde, great albergue there, then you can join the central way to Rates/Barcelos, plenty of people do it, you can find company for Barcelos if you ask around in the albergue. I walked without any gadgets, no internet on me, used the guide only to find a place to crash for the night, impossible to get lost. If you decide to continue along the coast the sprigy wooden boardwalk is not always there, some cobblestones as well as on the rest of the Portuguese way, some road walking as well. Bom Caminho! :)
 

Owensr23

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
9/2016 Frances
5/2018 Portugues
#3
My wife and I did the Frances in 2016 and are walking on the Portuguese from Porto starting May 20. Safety is no issue if you are smart. There is always people to walk with and everyone is friendly.

We walked from Leon in two weeks and we think we can do from Porto in ten days and then head to Finisterre. We live in Florida, so we are walking just first day out of Porto on beach and the inland from there. Even inland several towns are coastal. We just thought beach may be full of people and we would like some nature.

Bon Camino
 

JohnMcM

Veteran Member
Donating Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances - Muxia - Finisterre 2014
StJPdP to Burgos 2015
Primitivo 2015
Porto -SDC 2016
Portuguese Senda Litoral 2016
Ingles 2016
#4
Hello Deshi and friend,

The advice surya8 gives you is good as far as I am concerned. Having walked both routes, if I were to walk the CP again, I would do what surya8 advises.

If you get the guide or search this forum for more info, I'm sure you and your friend will enjoy your Camino. I say that with confidence because of the wording of your own post.

Bom (friend-filled) Caminho
 

Jo Jo

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances, July 2014
Via di Francesco (Italy), July 2015
Frances, Sept-Oct 2016
Portugues Oct. 2017
#5
More than enough people on the CP to walk with. A group of us got one Brazilian girl to SdC even though she was so directionally-challenged she got lost walking from the restaurant back to the alburge in Tamel (it was across the street--literally, right across the street). By the end, she got much better and made it to Finesterre on her own. If she can make it, you can too.

I concur on walking out of Porto by the river then the sea, then cutting in land a Vila do Conde.

Bon Caminho.
 

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Deshi

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
mid May 2018
#6
With little time to plan, we are 2 ladies intending to set out on Camino Portugal on May 15 for about 2 weeks. We are first timer on the Camino. Living our whole life in cities. Been reading for a few days the posts in this forum, very grateful for so many helpful and inspiring pilgrims sharing information and stories.

Our plan/idea so far is to fly into Porto and have a couple days of easy distance walk from there. Will only book the albergues for first few nights’ and see where our feet take us. It’s the journey we care for not really the end point (at least not this first trip).

(1) We would like to do the Camino Portugal but not sure if we should take the coastal or inland route.

(2) Major concern is our safety but also our inexperience with the countryside/woods/navigation/language, we wonder if we should just join the crowd and walk the Camino Francés instead, but we are not very enthusiastic to be surrounded by people and noise most of the time.

(3) Read that walk along the coast is walking for many km/few days on the beach front broadwalk.
Is this info correct? I could have read wrongly. Need to get a guide book by this week.

Thanks in advance for all your help.
Get the Brierley guide, it was very helpful on my two Portuguese Caminos. Most of Portugues speak reasonable English, you don't need to worry about communication, and most of it will be in the albergues anyway with the international crowd. Don't swap it for the French way unless you specifically want to walk it, the Portuguese way is self-sufficient, easy and VERY safe to walk, with great infrastructure, beautifil towns on the way, great food and the wearther in May should be fabulus, the way is very well marked. I started my first day of my first Camino there exactly a year ago to the same day! Grand memories! You can try both ways actually, if you walk the first day out of Porto along the ocean to Vila do Conde, great albergue there, then you can join the central way to Rates/Barcelos, plenty of people do it, you can find company for Barcelos if you ask around in the albergue. I walked without any gadgets, no internet on me, used the guide only to find a place to crash for the night, impossible to get lost. If you decide to continue along the coast the sprigy wooden boardwalk is not always there, some cobblestones as well as on the rest of the Portuguese way, some road walking as well. Bom Caminho! :)
Get the Brierley guide, it was very helpful on my two Portuguese Caminos. Most of Portugues speak reasonable English, you don't need to worry about communication, and most of it will be in the albergues anyway with the international crowd. Don't swap it for the French way unless you specifically want to walk it, the Portuguese way is self-sufficient, easy and VERY safe to walk, with great infrastructure, beautifil towns on the way, great food and the wearther in May should be fabulus, the way is very well marked. I started my first day of my first Camino there exactly a year ago to the same day! Grand memories! You can try both ways actually, if you walk the first day out of Porto along the ocean to Vila do Conde, great albergue there, then you can join the central way to Rates/Barcelos, plenty of people do it, you can find company for Barcelos if you ask around in the albergue. I walked without any gadgets, no internet on me, used the guide only to find a place to crash for the night, impossible to get lost. If you decide to continue along the coast the sprigy wooden boardwalk is not always there, some cobblestones as well as on the rest of the Portuguese way, some road walking as well. Bom Caminho! :)
Thank you Surya
Get the Brierley guide, it was very helpful on my two Portuguese Caminos. Most of Portugues speak reasonable English, you don't need to worry about communication, and most of it will be in the albergues anyway with the international crowd. Don't swap it for the French way unless you specifically want to walk it, the Portuguese way is self-sufficient, easy and VERY safe to walk, with great infrastructure, beautifil towns on the way, great food and the wearther in May should be fabulus, the way is very well marked. I started my first day of my first Camino there exactly a year ago to the same day! Grand memories! You can try both ways actually, if you walk the first day out of Porto along the ocean to Vila do Conde, great albergue there, then you can join the central way to Rates/Barcelos, plenty of people do it, you can find company for Barcelos if you ask around in the albergue. I walked without any gadgets, no internet on me, used the guide only to find a place to crash for the night, impossible to get lost. If you decide to continue along the coast the sprigy wooden boardwalk is not always there, some cobblestones as well as on the rest of the Portuguese way, some road walking as well. Bom Caminho! :)
Thank you Surya for your info and reassurance. Definitely has put my mind to ease.
 

Deshi

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
mid May 2018
#7
My wife and I did the Frances in 2016 and are walking on the Portuguese from Porto starting May 20. Safety is no issue if you are smart. There is always people to walk with and everyone is friendly.

We walked from Leon in two weeks and we think we can do from Porto in ten days and then head to Finisterre. We live in Florida, so we are walking just first day out of Porto on beach and the inland from there. Even inland several towns are coastal. We just thought beach may be full of people and we would like some nature.

Bon Camino
Thank you Owen for encouragement. Hopefully with our degree of smartness and the grace of the pilgrim way will see us through our journey. :) We might be a couple days ahead of you. We are from Singapore, Asians. Maybe we might bump into each other along the way. Bon Caminho!
 

Deshi

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
mid May 2018
#8
Hello Deshi and friend,

The advice surya8 gives you is good as far as I am concerned. Having walked both routes, if I were to walk the CP again, I would do what surya8 advises.

If you get the guide or search this forum for more info, I'm sure you and your friend will enjoy your Camino. I say that with confidence because of the wording of your own post.

Bom (friend-filled) Caminho
Thank you John for your reply and encouragement. We definitely feel more assured and getting excited reading all the positive comments. Thank you!
 

Deshi

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
mid May 2018
#9
More than enough people on the CP to walk with. A group of us got one Brazilian girl to SdC even though she was so directionally-challenged she got lost walking from the restaurant back to the alburge in Tamel (it was across the street--literally, right across the street). By the end, she got much better and made it to Finesterre on her own. If she can make it, you can too.

I concur on walking out of Porto by the river then the sea, then cutting in land a Vila do Conde.

Bon Caminho.
Thank you Jo Jo for your reply and story. Yes we can make it! I feel more confident already from all the support and replies. :))
 

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