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Food for the Journey


I'm still uncertain as to how plan for eating along the way.

Dinner (last meal of the day) seems to be taken care of with the Pilgirm's Meals in any of the local towns, which I imagine comes around 2000 hours.

Mid-day is still an open question, as is breakfast.

If one departs the refugio at 6 am, how does one provide for food before leaving? Are there adequate resources for a mid-morning meal around 11 am? Should I purchase food for the next day when I arrive in town for the night, and should I arrange to have a spot to carry the day's food with me?

If I recall, the major meal of the day in Spain is mid-day. Do people have this along the trail, or do they wait until they arrive at their final destination of the day?

I'm just full of questions today. Any insights are greatly appreciated.
St James' Way - Self-guided 4-7 day Walking Packages, Reading to Southampton, 110 kms
Hello Rob,

The Camino has many places along the way that caters for the pilgrims. Bars are open early for that get you started cup of coffee and in many little villages the stores are open later to buy food. The are also plenty of little bars / cafes along the way that has something to eat - from simple bocadillos to 3 course menus.

When I did the Camino, I tried to do most, if not all, of my walking before lunch. My reward at my destination was I nice menu del dia and a nap. In the evenings, I would buy some items for dinner (bread, cheese, fruit, ham, wine, etc...) and would share with the other pilgrims and then whatever I had left over would be snack food the next day.

You won't go hungry!

Hope this helps - good luck and buen camino!
Hi again, Rob.

I did the same thing as the former poster says.

In the morning I tried to have some fruit and/or youghurt with muesli I bought the day before. If not, there are many bars open that serves your coffee/tea/hot chocolate and toast for breakfast.

I tried aslo to have the main meal around lunch - around 11 - 15 o'clock, whatever fitted me best according to my walking schedule for the day, and a lighter meal in the evening. (Try to climb on top of the bunk-bed with a three course Peregrino-menu and half a bottle of wine in your stomach...... :shock: ) I never had any problem finding a place to eat early in the day.

Just plan out from your map, so you know how far it is to the next village and probably food. My experience were that fewer of the villages in Galicia had food-possibilities than earlier on the Camino, but I don't know if anyone else have the same feeling.

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I survived on liquid, chocolate, fruit and bread during the day - occasionally a meal in the evening - make sure that you have liquid and chocolate the night before as you cannot expect much to be open at 7am
JustRob said:
Dinner (last meal of the day) seems to be taken care of with the Pilgirm's Meals in any of the local towns, which I imagine comes around 2000 hours.

Mid-day is still an open question, as is breakfast.

If one departs the refugio at 6 am, how does one provide for food before leaving?

Much the same as the other two except we tended to have our main meal in the evening as you propose. Northern Spain is does not eat as late as the South of the country but it is still late by Northern European / American standards. Having said that the bars that offer pilgrim meals know who they are catering for and do tend to start serving earlier than the off camino or city restaurants.

We did not eat before leaving the refugio unless they prepared something like the CSJ one at Rabanal did but stopped at the first cafe/bar we saw. There is a cafe/bar in almost every village where you can get a cafe con leche and a piece of tortilla or bocadillo to keep you going, obviously there are some stretches where these are well apart but with the preparation you are doing you probably don't need me to tell you where.

We also aimed to finish by the early afternoon, in mid summer it is best to finish before it gets too hot, but we would have a light snack at lunch time.

Buen Camino
Many places close for siesta - sometimes for as long as 5 hours - from 12pm to 5pm. We often walked through closed and shuttered villages with nothing stirring, not even a mouse!
Best to get your shopping down in the morning when you see an open store or shop Or you might be lucky to find a Panaderia (bakery van) or vegetable and fruit van in the village doing deliveries.
There are some places that don’t sell anything – Calzadilla, Ledigos (a woman sometimes sells stuff to pilgrims from her home) Santa Catalina de Somoza and Murias de Rechivaldo. Some might have a vending machine for cold-drinks but no shop to buy food.
Carry a few Madeleina cakes with you - some chocolate, nuts or other energy foods.
We always managed to eat dinner before 8pm and were in dreamland by 9pm. Some pilgrims sleep all afternoon and go looking for food after 8pm or 9pm and then get to bed just before curfew. Yes - some albergues lock the doors at night - usually at 10pm or 11pm.
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