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help, i booked up to stage 4 but can’t find a place to stay now — Camino de Madrid

paulgeis

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
2021
this was really dumb on my part.

i got my credential today to leave on the 17th. i managed to book places to stay up to stage 4 but now everything is taken. i don’t know ehat to do. if i dhould try to cancel all my bookings and just stay in madrid longer. i am very stressed out now and depressed. has this happend to anyone else and what did u do?
 
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paulgeis

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
2021
this was really dumb on my part.

i got my credential today to leave on the 17th. i managed to book places to stay up to stage 4 but now everything is taken. i don’t know ehat to do. if i dhould try to cancel all my bookings and just stay in madrid longer. i am very stressed out now and depressed. has this happend to anyone else and what did u do?
i don’t think i can do this now. too many people are doing it and i just can’t find places to stay.
Which Camino?
madrid. i think i will have to cancel all my bookings up to that stage and find another thing to do. this is too popular…
 

Kanga

Moderator
Staff member
Past OR future Camino
Francés x 5, Le Puy x 2, Arles, Tours, Norte, Madrid, Via de la Plata, Portuguese, Primitivo
@paulgeis I would ignore the accommodation problem and hop on the bus or train and just go. But I've walked multiple Caminos and am pretty well prepared to sleep anywhere. I can understand when it is a first camino that you need a bit more structure.

I assume that you are planning to walk the Camino Francés? And starting from St-Jean?
 

Kanga

Moderator
Staff member
Past OR future Camino
Francés x 5, Le Puy x 2, Arles, Tours, Norte, Madrid, Via de la Plata, Portuguese, Primitivo
@paulgeis have you thought about walking the Camino de Madrid? It is lovely! And I am sure will not be crowded. EDITED TO ADD : I think this was thought less advice on my part - at this time of the year.

Also, if you search this forum, you will find plenty of threads "live from the Camino" and people further along the Camino Francés are not finding it crowded at all. Perhaps start somewhere other than at St Jean.
 
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paulgeis

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
2021
@paulgeis I would ignore the accommodation problem and hop on the bus or train and just go. But I've walked multiple Caminos and am pretty well prepared to sleep anywhere. I can understand when it is a first camino that you need a bit more structure.

I assume that you are planning to walk the Camino Francés? And starting from St-Jean?
hey kanga,

tbh i ran away from the usa and am in madrid hostel hopping and trying to adjust to not being able to speak to anyone. this seemed like a good thing to do but i may be way in over my head now…

@paulgeis have you thought about walking the Camino de Madrid? It is lovely! And I am sure will not be crowded.
that’s what i tried, i booked up to stage 4 but everything is taken it seems and it gets really confusing at stage 4…
 

Kanga

Moderator
Staff member
Past OR future Camino
Francés x 5, Le Puy x 2, Arles, Tours, Norte, Madrid, Via de la Plata, Portuguese, Primitivo
So you are not walking the traditional Camino? But walking out of Madrid?
 

paulgeis

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
2021
i am in madrid now and booked up to stage 4, i was being stupid and assumed i would be able to book through into where it intersects into the main french camino but i am stuck trying to find a place to stay at stage 4.

So you are not walking the traditional Camino? But walking out of Madrid?
that is correct sir. but maybe not at all now…
 
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Kathar1na

Member
Past OR future Camino
To Santiago and back (roads & paths; Tours; Francés; sea; roads & paths)
if i try a different one can i use the credential i got from madrid?
Hi @paulgeis, it looks like you joined the forum yesterday and this is your first trip to Spain and to going on Camino?

You can use the credential that you got in Madrid for all the other Caminos in France, Spain or Portugal.

I don't know the Camino de Madrid and why you picked it. Many people start with the Camino Francés as their first Camino. At the moment and because of the special situation in 2021, the Camino Francés is busy (ie. number of available beds compared to number of pilgrims looking for beds) in the first stages, between Saint Jean Pied de Port in France to Pamplona, and in the last stages, from Sarria to Santiago.

Depending on the time you want to invest and if you don't want to walk from Madrid after all, you could take a bus from Madrid to Pamplona or to Burgos or to Leon and start from there. You are bound to meet other pilgrims, including many who speak English, and you will quickly learn the ropes of how to best find a bed for the next night without booking too many days ahead.

Take a deep breath. It will be fine. Buen Camino.
 

biarritzdon

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
CF11, CF12, CP13, CF14, CA15, S.Anton15, CF&CI15
Ditch Pig16, CF&CP17, CdN18, CM18, CF18, LePuy19
You have picked a time when everyone in Europe goes on holiday. I walked on the Camino Madrid several years ago and was the only person, what app are you using to pre-book?
 

paulgeis

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
2021
Hi @paulgeis, it looks like you joined the forum yesterday and this is your first trip to Spain and to going on Camino?

You can use the credential that you got in Madrid for all the other Caminos in France, Spain or Portugal.

I don't know the Camino de Madrid and why you picked it. Many people start with the Camino Francés as their first Camino. At the moment and because of the special situation in 2021, the Camino Francés is busy (ie. number of available beds compared to number of pilgrims looking for beds) in the first stages, between Saint Jean Pied de Port in France to Pamplona, and in the last stages, from Sarria to Santiago.

Depending on the time you want to invest and if you don't want to walk from Madrid after all, you could take a bus from Madrid to Pamplona or to Burgos or to Leon and start from there. You are bound to meet other pilgrims, including many who speak English, and you will quickly learn the ropes of how to best find a bed for the next night without booking too many days ahead.

Take a deep breath. It will be fine. Buen Camino.
thank you. i feel overwhelmed right now. i have been following coincidences this whole trip and came over to spain on a one way ticket with little to no plan. reality is catching up to me.

You have picked a time when everyone in Europe goes on holiday. I walked on the Camino Madrid several years ago and was the only person, what app are you using to pre-book?
i was just using booking.com as i have been using it for hostels in madrid.
 
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Past OR future Camino
2012
Try https://www.gronze.com/camino-santiago-madrid and contacting places direct. Yes, Gronze is in Spanish but using Google Chrome will give you and instant translation if absolutely necessary but all the accommodation contact details are obvious.

Most of the Pilgrim Albergues on the Camino Madrid are closed cerrado but there are alternatives.

By the way, you say you are booked through to Stage 4, is that Segovia or are you using a specific guidebook and following pre-designated stages?
 

peregrina2000

Moderator
Staff member
i managed to book places to stay up to stage 4 but now everything is taken.
Hi, @paulgeis,
What are the stages you are planning to do on the Camino de Madrid?

According to Gronze, that would get you to Segovia — Trest Cantos, Manzanares, Cercedilla and Segovia.

Many of the stages on the Madrid after that have albergues, which will be empty, and which are open. Take a look at this thread.


In post number 7 of that thread, I listed all the albergues that a recent peregrino was able to stay in. There are also suggestions about other towns and places to stay.

If you have reservations up through Segovia, I think you will be fine. Segovia to Sahagún is not a touristed part of Spain and there are hostels/pensiones where you are likely to find a bed.

The Camino de Madrid is one of the least traveled caminos in Spain, so you will not be competing with other pilgrims for beds.

Good luck, and buen camino, Laurie
 

Kathar1na

Member
Past OR future Camino
To Santiago and back (roads & paths; Tours; Francés; sea; roads & paths)
thank you. i feel overwhelmed right now. i have been following coincidences this whole trip and came over to spain on a one way ticket with little to no plan. reality is catching up to me.
Was it your plan to even walk a Camino? Is something keeping you in Madrid until the 17th? I'm not trying to pry, I just feel it may be good to give us more of an idea about what you know already about long-distance Camino walking in Spain. Do you know your way around the forum? Here are links to two recent threads from people who currently walk and which you may find useful (on the Camino Francés though, not Madrid - skip the thread drifts).

 
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jpflavin1

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
2021
i was just using booking.com as i have been using it for hostels in madrid.
Number 1, do not panic. Number 2 try using Gronze.com as your search engine for accommodation. As mentioned by Peregrina2000, there is little to no traffic on the Madrid after Segovia. You are currently trying to walk during the busiest season.

It is only August 6th, take a breath and look at some of the options others have suggested above. :)
 

linkster

¡Nunca dejes de creer!
Past OR future Camino
2022
@paulgeis It will be OK, you already navigated yourself to Spain. You are having an adventure. Imagine the stories you will have by the time you complete your Camino.

I saw from your other post that you may not be fluent in Spanish. Neither am I. I use Google Translate a lot. Download the offline dictionary so that you can use it when you do not have WIFI access. Familiarize yourself with some of the features like the camera that can do real time translation. Use Google Chrome to translate web pages for you from Spanish to English.

Go to the reception desk where you are staying and ask them for some help. They may know enough English to help you.

What if the stage (town etc.) is completely booked? Can you get a bus or taxi to the next stage? Check Rome2Rio for possible connections.

¡Buena Suerte!👣:D:cool:
 
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Jimmy
Past OR future Camino
2019
Hi @paulgeis, it looks like you joined the forum yesterday and this is your first trip to Spain and to going on Camino?

You can use the credential that you got in Madrid for all the other Caminos in France, Spain or Portugal.

I don't know the Camino de Madrid and why you picked it. Many people start with the Camino Francés as their first Camino. At the moment and because of the special situation in 2021, the Camino Francés is busy (ie. number of available beds compared to number of pilgrims looking for beds) in the first stages, between Saint Jean Pied de Port in France to Pamplona, and in the last stages, from Sarria to Santiago.

Depending on the time you want to invest and if you don't want to walk from Madrid after all, you could take a bus from Madrid to Pamplona or to Burgos or to Leon and start from there. You are bound to meet other pilgrims, including many who speak English, and you will quickly learn the ropes of how to best find a bed for the next night without booking too many days ahead.

Take a deep breath. It will be fine. Buen Camino.
I agree with Kathar. These are good places to start. You’ll avoid the busiest places and there will be more accommodation. Importantly, try not to stress or panic. The Frances is friendly to all pilgrims, you’ll surely find company and experienced pilgrims who’ll show you the ropes. After 2-3 days you’ll be fine. You won’t be alone and usually there’s more accommodation than what you find on the web and booking sites.
 

Pilgrim9

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
SJPdP-SdC (2017)
SdC-Muxia-Fisterra-SdC (2017)
Lisboa-SdC (2018)
Ferrol-SdC (2018)
this was really dumb on my part.

i got my credential today to leave on the 17th. i managed to book places to stay up to stage 4 but now everything is taken. i don’t know ehat to do. if i dhould try to cancel all my bookings and just stay in madrid longer. i am very stressed out now and depressed. has this happend to anyone else and what did u do?
I am sorry to hear that you are encountering unexpected challenges in reserving lodgings for your chosen Camino.

I encountered a somewhat similar problem 4 years ago whilst walking from Barcelona to the Camino Frances (CF): after passing Igualada and as I approached Balaguer, I had more and more trouble finding any lodging establishments whatsoever beyond Balaguer. I searched and searched on Google Maps and Booking.com and Expedia and on another mapping app that I use, and simply could not find any lodging places at all that were spaced at walkable distances in the next few hundred kilometres beyond Balaguer.

My solution back then was to abandon the sparsely-used Barcelona pilgrimage route. I took trains and a bus from Balaguer to get to SJPdP and started over again on the CF from there. There were lots of transportation options to SJPdP and plenty of lodging places on the CF. Everything was fine once I was on the main CF route.

Had I to do it over again, I would instead have found acceptable lodgings somewhere near my initially-chosen route, used them as a central base for a few days at a time, walked a day's walk at a time on the route with a light day pack, and used taxis or buses to get to and from each end of that notional series of pilgrimage day walks. After a few days, establish a new base at the next town that has lodgings and repeat the cycle.

Someone else in this forum later suggested that many small villages might well have numerous unadvertised, informal lodging places in people's homes and/or e.g. civic sports halls, etc., and that the generally-accepted method of discovering them is to mention to e.g. folks in cafes or bars etc. that I was on a spiritual pilgrimage to Santiago, and was seeking lodgings for one night in the area, and humbly inquire if this village might have any place that would for a small fee let me shower and stay overnight. That approach makes sense, especially in rural, economically under-stimulated areas: local folks might need the money. However I did not think of it at the time.

Just some ideas.

Good luck on your pilgrimage.
 

Albertagirl

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
Frances (2015); Aragones-Frances (2016); VdlP-Sanabres (2017); Madrid-Frances-Invierno (2019)Levante
I loved the Madrid and found it my easiest of all caminos to plan. This is just as well, as I had to change my plans at the last minute. I was a volunteer in a pilgrim hostel which put me out unexpectadly a week ahead of my scheduled completion of my service, when they had to close to manage a bad bedbug outbreak. Any previous bookings were useless and I had to start by making last minute reservations in expensive hotels, and in a couple of cases, losing the full cost of bookings which I had paid for in advance and could not change the date. No booking and no albergue available in Tres Cantos. I stayed in one of the most expensive hotels in town, and met another camino pilgrim staying there also. Thinking that you must pre-book far ahead is putting you in a mental bind and causing you to panic. I have always started my caminos by booking my first night, and my last couple of night in Santiago. I cannot give you specific directions for how to make yourself totally carefree. Wherever you walk at this time, you will have to walk in faith. If you consider yourself to be a pilgrim, get your pilgrim blessing, be thankful for your first few days reservations, and start walking. It will be an adventure.
 

Doughnut NZ

From Aotearoa New Zealand
Past OR future Camino
2022
If you don't have a passport from a EU country then please remember to leave the Schengen (EU) area before 3 months are up.

If you know the route that you want to follow then just start walking. When you stop for the day ask the people where you are staying to help you find a place to stay the next day.

You may become lonely for other pilgrims on the Madrid Camino, if you do then head north and join the Camino Frances and then you will have heaps of other pilgrims around you.

Have confidence in yourself, you have got this far successfully and found this forum for help. Between you and the people on this forum we will get you to Santiago de Compostela 🥾😇
 

Doughnut NZ

From Aotearoa New Zealand
Past OR future Camino
2022
How heavy is your backpack? If it is too heavy then it is possible to post things that you don't absolutely need every day on to Santiago de Compostela so that you can lighten your load.

It is also possible to have your backpack transported ahead to where you will stay that night. Ask if you want to know how to do this.

It will be VERY hot if you walk from Madrid at the moment. You MUST carry water with you. It is also much better to get up very early and start walking when it is still cool. Don't walk after 1pm, you may die of heat exhaustion.
 
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gollygolly

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
2000/13/14/15/16/17/18/19/2021
Have faith, have trust. I have very, very rarely booked ahead for any f the Camino that I have walked and I have never ever not had a place to sleep at the end of the day. There is a lot, a lot of accomodation available that is not listed on Booking.com.

It will be hot, really hot, so think about taking a small umbrella to shield from the sun and as already written by others, take water and learn to ask for 'agua' - preferably 'Por favor, agua', which is water please, with 'gracias' when provided. This is thanks you.

Good luck
 

Zordmot

First timer Spring 2019
Past OR future Camino
April-May 2019
There were 4 good suggestions here:

1. You CAN do this.
2. Start walking in Pamplona. After that you should be OK with or without reservations
3. The people that work in albergues can often be very helpful in helping you find a place. There are many places to stay that are not listed in the guidebooks or Booking.
4. Good apps on your phone are Booking.com and Airbnb.

Buen Camino! You can do this
 

Ronald Boivin

Member
Past OR future Camino
2021
this was really dumb on my part.

i got my credential today to leave on the 17th. i managed to book places to stay up to stage 4 but now everything is taken. i don’t know ehat to do. if i dhould try to cancel all my bookings and just stay in madrid longer. i am very stressed out now and depressed. has this happend to anyone else and what did
 

Ronald Boivin

Member
Past OR future Camino
2021
The owners of each of the places at which you will stay likely know of accommodations beyond your stage 4. Ask them to book past stage four for you. Secondly, as you walk you will encounter people who have booked accommodations past stage four and you can consult them as to where they are staying. All restaurant and cafe owners know of nonlisted places. Parishes as well. Many private citizens would offer you a humble room for a modest price if they see you are stuck.
Thirdly there are many hostels, Albergues and hotels that are not listedIn the guide books that you may have. As you walk into a town you may ask locals where is the best place to stay in town or the next town. I would not cancel at all but consider it an adventure. Spain is very welcoming and no one will leave you out on the street. I encountered a similar situation for myself in France on the Camino Tolosana … locals would start phoning to find me terrific places to stay. Remember that some guidebooks get kickbacks from listing accommodations. Finally, access the the local pilgrim offices for their sheets full of acomodaticios. Town offices will also have a list of people who welcome pilgrims and tourists. Don’t cancel and let the angels clear the way. The Camino DOES provide.
 
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paulgeis

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
2021
Hey,

I took a nap and dreamed because that is what i usually do when i am stuck. i can’t remember it well but every dream i have had since arriving in spain has been some meta-construct of my current situation. inception like almost. i am not going to worry about booking ahead, since i iunbooked everything. on the 17th i am going to buy lots of water and just start pushing on the madrid route. when i hit built up areas i will try to socialize and survive. worst case scenario i have and iso mat and blanket. i can just sleep on the street, does not seem to rain much. i guess i missed the point of this, i need faith and to put it in perspective the entire reason i am in spain was because i was going to give up on life unless i did something drastic. i have money and i have already walked over 10 miles no problem with my full pack load in one sitting. i just cannot be afraid, i have to let go and start moving on the 17th.
 

paulgeis

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
2021
so my current plan is this:

grab as much water as i can, study and print the maps on https://www.gronze.com/camino-santiago-madrid
on the 17th start walking on the route early while it’s cool. when i hit a built up area attempt to make contact with other pilgrims and establish a place to rest. if that fails i can find a place to roll out the mat and make shelter long enough i can recharge and repeat.
 

trecile

Camino Addict
Past OR future Camino
Francés (2016 & 2017), Norte (2018), Francés-Salvador-Norte (2019), Portuguese (2019)
I agree with those who suggest going to Pamplona and walk the Camino Francés. You will find more English speaking pilgrims on that route, many of whom have already been walking for a few days and can give you advice and support.
I haven't walked the Madrid myself, but from reading accounts from others who have, you may not encounter many other pilgrims on this route.
Another reason why I think that the Francés is best for you is because it has the best pilgrim infrastructure of any of the Caminos.
 

Chris Gi

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
2018
so my current plan is this:

grab as much water as i can, study and print the maps on https://www.gronze.com/camino-santiago-madrid
on the 17th start walking on the route early while it’s cool. when i hit a built up area attempt to make contact with other pilgrims and establish a place to rest. if that fails i can find a place to roll out the mat and make shelter long enough i can recharge and repeat.
Keep in touch and let us all know how you are doing. Stay well and stay safe. Blessings for a Buen Camino
 

jsalt

Jill
Past OR future Camino
Portugués, Francés, LePuy, Rota Vicentina, Norte, Madrid, C2C, Salvador, Primitivo, Aragonés, Inglés
August 17 is ages away yet – lots of time for planning. The Camino de Madrid is a great walk . . . stay with it. Have fun, but take LOTS of water. Every big town has an escape route if you need it. Buen camino.
 
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henrythedog

Loved and fed by David
Past OR future Camino
Frances 2017, 2018, 2019, Ingles 2018, (Madrid 2019 partial - retired hurt!) (more planned)
You should be fine at least through to Cercedilla. If it’s all going pear-shaped then there’s a train to Segovia and onwards to Valladolid.

To be honest, with (no offence intended) your degree of preparation I’m in the ‘get a train to Pamplona’ camp also.
 

henrythedog

Loved and fed by David
Past OR future Camino
Frances 2017, 2018, 2019, Ingles 2018, (Madrid 2019 partial - retired hurt!) (more planned)
August 17 is ages away yet – lots of time for planning. The Camino de Madrid is a great walk . . . stay with it. Have fun, but take LOTS of water. Every big town has an escape route if you need it. Buen camino.
I missed the date! The OP will be the forum’s authority on the hostales of Madrid by then.
 

trecile

Camino Addict
Past OR future Camino
Francés (2016 & 2017), Norte (2018), Francés-Salvador-Norte (2019), Portuguese (2019)
Another plus for the Frances is that there are more towns, and they are closer together, so you can walk shorter stages if you wish, and there are more places to stop to eat, refill water, use the bathroom, etc.
 

MarkyD

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
Camino Francés 31/08/2018 - 20/10/2018
thank you. i feel overwhelmed right now. i have been following coincidences this whole trip and came over to spain on a one way ticket with little to no plan. reality is catching up to me.
Hi Paul, I live in Madrid and I have recently been visiting towns on the Camino de Madrid. To be honest, I haven't seen many pilgrim walkers, but there will probably be more Spanish tourists than usual due to uncertainties in travelling abroad.
My advice would be to trust the Camino experience to open up for you. I know it may feel daunting if you imagine the worst case scenarios, but even those have solutions (as people here have suggested to you).

Stick to your original bookings, then on arrival at first or second stop ask the hospitalero to help you book your stop for day 5 and 6, or just walk and on arrival at a town where you want to stop just go to the albergues there (Use a guide book or app like Gronze to get phone numbers and call albergue the day before, or about 9am in the morning to try and make a booking on the day). At any hostel, albergue or hotel the staff will help you find somewhere for the night and will call a taxi for you IF it's even necessary for you to be taken to accommodation in another town.
Of course, you most likely will have to pay a bit more to stay in a hotel (if it comes to that), but it's only really the bigger towns that are likely to be fully booked.
Take a deep breath, have some faith in "letting go" and just take it all one step at a time. Trying to plan too much in advance will limit you and restrict you in many ways, despite giving you a bit of confidence of a place to stay each night. There WILL be places to stay, Spain has a huge hospitality network which is still open for business despite these Covid-19 times we are living in. When you meet other pilgrims you can ask them where they are staying and get a number to call and book on the day.
 

lt56ny

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
2021
I would agree that a new pilgrim is probably better off on the Francés. A less traveled camino can be difficult if you are not experienced. I haven’t walked this way yet but have looked at it for the future. Johnny Walker of the Confraternity of St.James has a guidebook. I know it is not too up to date but it has a lot of information that any pilgrim would find very useful. You can buy it online at Amazon and download it to the kindle app. It also has links to other websites that support the Camino Madrid. The Buen Camino app also has a section on Madrid.
 
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Alvin T

New Member
Past OR future Camino
2
i am in madrid now and booked up to stage 4, i was being stupid and assumed i would be able to book through into where it intersects into the main french camino but i am stuck trying to find a place to stay at stage 4.


that is correct sir. but maybe not at all now…
Stay the course. I have walked the Camino Madrid and loved it. It was quiet and very peaceful. I do not speak Spanish and I had no problem getting hostels along the way. I also booked places up to Segovia. The rest of the way, hostels should be easy to get. My plan is to again walk the Camino Madrid next spring. If you want to watch my Camino Madrid YouTube video, just key in “Camino Madrid May 2919” and enjoy. Do not be worried - unless there are loads of walkers (which I doubt), you will find places to stay. Please report back - I would love to hear your impressions!
 

Alvin T

New Member
Past OR future Camino
2
Stay the course. I have walked the Camino Madrid and loved it. It was quiet and very peaceful. I do not speak Spanish and I had no problem getting hostels along the way. I also booked places up to Segovia. The rest of the way, hostels should be easy to get. My plan is to again walk the Camino Madrid next spring. If you want to watch my Camino Madrid YouTube video, just key in “Camino Madrid May 2919” and enjoy. Do not be worried - unless there are loads of walkers (which I doubt), you will find places to stay. Please report back - I would love to hear your impressions!
That should say Camino Madrid May 2019
 
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Albertagirl

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
Frances (2015); Aragones-Frances (2016); VdlP-Sanabres (2017); Madrid-Frances-Invierno (2019)Levante
I walked the Madrid in 2019. The only warning that I would give about it is that there may be extreme heat and dryness at this time of year, so it is vital to carry lots of water, protect from the sun, etc. On the positive side, the locals are very friendly and helpful to pilgrims, and there are many albergues along the way. You may be the only pilgrim some nights, but there is usually a hospitalero to introduce you to the neighbourhood, or a note on the door about whom to call to get the key. In some ways, I found this an ideal pilgrim route - there seemed to be more albergues run by pilgrim organizations and few for profit. I can see that I am talking myself into going back, but in the spring next time.
 
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Kathar1na

Member
Past OR future Camino
To Santiago and back (roads & paths; Tours; Francés; sea; roads & paths)
I have not read this entire thread so maybe someone else already posted this but here is a thread by someone who is on the Camino Madrid now. It mentions many open albergues:
The title of the thread says "On Camino Madrid now" but that was more than two years ago in April 2019 and pre-Covid.

The thread is now closed, which will help to avoid this kind of confusion.

A quick look through Gronze.com shows that a number of the albergues where this pilgrim stayed in April 2019 are currently closed (August 2021), presumably due to Covid-19 considerations.
 
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C clearly

Moderator
Staff member
Past OR future Camino
Most years since 2012. Hoping now for 2022.
i don’t know ehat to do.

i feel overwhelmed right now. i have been following coincidences this whole trip and came over to spain on a one way ticket with little to no plan. reality is catching up to me.

i need faith and to put it in perspective the entire reason i am in spain was because i was going to give up on life unless i did something drastic. i have money and i have already walked over 10 miles no problem with my full pack load in one sitting. i just cannot be afraid, i have to let go and start moving on the 17th.
We all have different approaches, but I would not advise you to walk yourself into exhaustion or into loneliness and confusion. Sometimes an adventure into the unknown, armed only with water and trust, might be a good thing, but it is not what I consider to be a good approach for a person who is overwhelmed and troubled.

I think there are things you can do to improve your chances of a positive Camino. If you are seeking solitude, staying on the Madrid would make sense. However, if it is more important to find easier logistics and companionship, go directly to Pamplona or Sahagun and walk the Frances. I think that going to the Frances might be wiser. Once you are there, you are immediately connected to a great support network that you might not find on the Camino Madrid.

We don't know why you apparently must stay in Madrid until the 17th, but perhaps we can help with some practicalities while you are there, to prepare for walking. For example, what type of backpack are you carrying? Even if you have already walked 10 miles with it, it might be wiser to unload some of it to increase your comfort. We can give you options for taking care of any excess. Do you need other equipment or supplies, or do you know where to get them?

To reduce the uncertainties and bring some order to your thoughts and plans, it seems sensible to decide on the route, based on practicalities and your needs, review your equipment, and then you can more confidently look forward to the 17th.
 

Alvin T

New Member
Past OR future Camino
2
I walked the Madrid in 2019. The only warning that I would give about it is that there may be extreme heat and dryness at this time of year, so it is vital to carry lots of water, protect from the sun, etc. On the positive side, the locals are very friendly and helpful to pilgrims, and there are many albergues along the way. You may be the only pilgrim some nights, but there is usually a hospitalero to introduce you to the neighbourhood, or a note on the door about whom to call to get the key. In some ways, I found this an ideal pilgrim route - there seemed to be more albergues run by pilgrim organizations and few for profit. I can see that I am talking myself into going back, but in the spring next time.
See you in the Csnino Madrid in May 2022!!!!
 
Past OR future Camino
CF 2006,08,09,11,12(2),13(2),14,16(2),18(2) Aragones 11,12,VDLP 11,13,Lourdes 12,Malaga 16,Port 06
The title of the thread says "On Camino Madrid now" but that was more than two years ago in April 2019 and pre-Covid.

The thread is now closed, which will help to avoid this kind of confusion.

A quick look through Gronze.com shows that a number of the albergues where this pilgrim stayed in April 2019 are currently closed (August 2021), presumably due to Covid-19 considerations.
Kathar1na, I see that now. And you’re right I was confused. Sometimes I wish they would just delete those old threads. Thanks for the heads up
 
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paulgeis

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
2021
i think i will be ok. i took a nap and asked my subconscious for help. when i woke up a french lady came in to the hostel dorm. she walked the camino frances and said the stuff on the website is not everything available. i think i was over planning and got myself psyched out. i think it is better i un reserved everything. i will just take it slow and if i need to stay in one place a few days to plan ahead i will. i actually started in san Fernando de hernarez when i got in and walked to downtown madrid with my full pack which was 16 kilometers. it was not hard and i went over hills. thank you for the generous community here.
 

Kanga

Moderator
Staff member
Past OR future Camino
Francés x 5, Le Puy x 2, Arles, Tours, Norte, Madrid, Via de la Plata, Portuguese, Primitivo
i think i will be ok. i took a nap and asked my subconscious for help. when i woke up a french lady came in to the hostel dorm. she walked the camino frances and said the stuff on the website is not everything available. i think i was over planning and got myself psyched out. i think it is better i un reserved everything. i will just take it slow and if i need to stay in one place a few days to plan ahead i will. i actually started in san Fernando de hernarez when i got in and walked to downtown madrid with my full pack which was 16 kilometers. it was not hard and i went over hills. thank you for the generous community here.

Paul, I am glad you are feeling better but, in spite of the urgings of other members, you do need a bit of caution on the Madrid in the heat of August. It is not so much a concern about accommodation, as you say, it is not the end of the world if someone has to spend the night without a bed. I am more concerned about the heat.

I think it unlikely you will come across other pilgrims on the route at this time of the year.

Water is obviously important. But please make sure you do plan ahead, and that you let people know your plans, and that you have a fall back if things go wrong. In particular, can I suggest you install "Alert Cops" on your phone, as it has the capacity to automatically connect you to the Spanish police and to send your GPS location. Always make sure your phone is fully charged before you leave in the morning. Two years ago we had the sad death of a walker on the Via de la Plata, who sought assistance by phone but sadly could not be found in time.

I have walked the Madrid, and it is indeed lovely, but there are long stretches between towns, in quite remote countryside. Most of our members who have walked it are experienced pilgrims or have walked it during more temperate seasons of the year.

Don't let anything stop you walking a Camino - but do consider which one is right! My choice would always be the traditional Camino Francés for the first time.
 

trecile

Camino Addict
Past OR future Camino
Francés (2016 & 2017), Norte (2018), Francés-Salvador-Norte (2019), Portuguese (2019)
I think it unlikely you will come across other pilgrims on the route at this time of the year.

I have walked the Madrid, and it is indeed lovely, but there are long stretches between towns, in quite remote countryside. Most of our members who have walked it are experienced pilgrims or have walked it during more temperate seasons of the year.

Don't let anything stop you walking a Camino - but do consider which one is right! My choice would always be the traditional Camino Francés for the first time.
I haven't walked the Camino de Madrid yet, but have read the accounts of others like @Kanga, and that's why I agree with those who suggest the Camino Francés.

can I suggest you install "Alert Cops" on your phone,
Here's the link to the site for the app

 

Doughnut NZ

From Aotearoa New Zealand
Past OR future Camino
2022
If you click on this link and let it open on Google maps then you will have lines that show up when you use G Maps that show you where the Camino's are and where you are in relationship with the Camino. The file is the CNIG set of maps for pilgrims. It also shows many albergues. This file is very useful but unfortunately with G Maps you can't follow it within the app, although other mapping tools allow this.
Thanks to @David Tallan for this map.
 
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Peaceable Projects Inc.
Peaceable Projects Inc. is a U.S.-based non-profit group that brings the vast resources of the wide world together with the ongoing needs of the people who live, work, and travel on the Camino de Santiago pilgrim trail network in Spain.
Camino Jewellery
A selection of Camino Jewellery
Past OR future Camino
2014, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19
Various routes...
Lots of very good advice here, both general and specific.

I've not walked the Madrid, so I can only speak to the general part.

@paulgeis, deep breath.
You know yourself better than anyone, certainly better than any of us here. So a bit of reflection is in order to help you decide the best way forward. Not overthinking but simple yes-no questions to ask yourself:
• Were you just momentarily overwhelmed when you posted here, or do you easily and often overwhelmed?
• Do you have experience walking long distances alone, or are you competely new?
• Do you have a good sense of direction, or do you get lost at hone with a gps?
• Are you comfortable with solitude or do you prefer company?
• How do you feel about spontenaity? Uncertainty?: Ok, or nonononono?
• Do you have all the equipment you need?

For anyone who's flexible, comfortable with solitude, and capable of walking distances between pueblos, the Madrid is ideal.

If you feel more at ease with shorter stages, company along the way, and reliable accommodation, the Frances would be ideal.

Both are good, but they are very different experiences. None if us can choose for you, we can only choose for us. And it matters where head and heart are. I would personally opt for the Madrid now, but for my first camino it would have been a disaster.

The main thing is to stay grounded in reality, and not to push your mental and emotional limits too hard. Walking and all it involves are hard enough - you will need to dig deep no matter which route you choose. So know your limits and respectfully and kindly stay within them.

Whichever way you walk, it will be an achievement, and a good thing to have done. There are no lesser choices here. So look within peregrino, and choose whichever route suits you better.
Both are seriously good.
 

jpflavin1

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
2021
WOW, I do not know if I have ever seen so many responses to a new members question.

I would recommend that you back track and read Peregrina2000's response to you inquiry. The information within is of a very recent experience on this route. Once you have read the content, you will have all the necessary data to make a decision.
 
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Pelegrin

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
2019
It will be VERY hot if you walk from Madrid at the moment. You MUST carry water with you. It is also much better to get up very early and start walking when it is still cool. Don't walk after 1pm, you may die of heat exhaustion.
This summer has been mild on Camino de Madrid so far.
Right now:
Cercedilla and Segovia 21°C
Medina del Campo 23°C.
Yes, but who knows what is coming.
 

paulgeis

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
2021
picked these maps up today to use with my compass. i used to be a land navigator for my platoon in the marines 15 years ago. i can use the maps and gps on my phone for parts and physical maps when it cuts out.
 

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linkster

¡Nunca dejes de creer!
Past OR future Camino
2022

trecile

Camino Addict
Past OR future Camino
Francés (2016 & 2017), Norte (2018), Francés-Salvador-Norte (2019), Portuguese (2019)
picked these maps up today to use with my compass. i used to be a land navigator for my platoon in the marines 15 years ago. i can use the maps and gps on my phone for parts and physical maps when it cuts out.
Do those maps have the Camino routes marked, or are they just road maps?

I really like the Buen Camino app. You can download whichever of the dozens of Camino routes you want to take. It has the maps, elevations, descriptions of the routes, accommodations, etc.

 
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paulgeis

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
2021
@linkster maps.me sounds like a good extra option i can use.

@trecile i am going to be drawing the camino routes over the top of the road maps. i have found i can plug each town into my phone and gps my routes and when that cuts out i use my last coordinate to verify a general location on the physical map. from there i use the compass to help navigate back into gps range or into the next town.

grabbing this application now as well, says it will work offline. i also have a portable battery to charge my phone in case.

this looks good, will display accommodations, food or landmarks. has the madrid route, works offline.
 

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Kathar1na

Member
Past OR future Camino
To Santiago and back (roads & paths; Tours; Francés; sea; roads & paths)
@paulgeis, you seem to be reasonably equipped with maps and mapping tools but I thought it probably cannot do much harm when I mention that the Camino Association that is dedicated to the Camino de Madrid and gives advice to pilgrims has a website here: http://www.demadridalcamino.org/home.

Under the tab Camino de Madrid - Recorrido, they've published map extracts where the Camino de Madrid is marked in yellow. 1:200.000. (I am one of these people who always likes to carry something on paper, in addition to what I have on the iPhone, even on broad Camino trails where it is difficult to get seriously lost.)

Sample (click to enlarge):
CdM.jpg
 

Friend from Barquinha

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
None yet; perhaps the Portugese (2021?)
@linkster maps.me sounds like a good extra option i can use.

@trecile i am going to be drawing the camino routes over the top of the road maps. i have found i can plug each town into my phone and gps my routes and when that cuts out i use my last coordinate to verify a general location on the physical map. from there i use the compass to help navigate back into gps range or into the next town.
Nice to see you're working hard on this. The energy you put into navigating "from scratch" will likely communicate itself to local residents. I suspect you will get a lot of support!
 

RJM

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
A few times
I just noticed that you have until the 17th to plan your walk. Ten days away. I do not think I put in ten days worth of planning for all my Camino's combined. It really does not require that much planning, is not austere and if it begins to suck to much for you, you can always get a taxi somewhere and go home, or somewhere else. No need for any concern.
 

paulgeis

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
2021
so check this out:

this app provides a satellite overlay so i can see the terrain. i can zoom out and filter for lodging and food. so because i can see the terrain i can plan when i have a long stretch and check the distance to determine time then verify i have enough water rest and food for that stretch. plus i can download the sections for offline consultation. i think my initial panic was over planning and planning wrong coupled with culture shock. i got this.
 

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Rent a house in Santiago (1 month minimum)
300m from the cathedral and around the corner from the fresh food market in Santiago. Perfect place to tele commute from (1GB symmetrical connection).
A Quest of St. James, Tommy Ray, Book Cover, Image
Come follow the vivid imagery of this life-changing adventure.
Past OR future Camino
Frances 2016; Mansill de las Mulas to Finisterre/Muxia 2017; Aragones 2018; Suso/Yuso, Meseta 2019
Do those maps have the Camino routes marked, or are they just road maps?

I really like the Buen Camino app. You can download whichever of the dozens of Camino routes you want to take. It has the maps, elevations, descriptions of the routes, accommodations, etc.

Trecile, The Buen Camino app on my phone still says from two years ago "will be updated in November or December", the link that you have here says 2020 version. How do I ensure that I have the latest version? Should I delete what I currently have on my phone and download anew from your link, or presumably the latest version from the App store? Thank you!
 

paulgeis

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
2021
I went with the camino tool app because the buen camino app only has the madrid route in spanish but camino tool shows all routes in an english interface
 

paulgeis

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
2021
i don’t like people, joking.

to put it in an allegorical context i am crossing the abyss of my mind to be born again. i seek love through understanding of self and as a result i am being led on the quest for the grail but do not seek the grail…
 

trecile

Camino Addict
Past OR future Camino
Francés (2016 & 2017), Norte (2018), Francés-Salvador-Norte (2019), Portuguese (2019)
I went with the camino tool app because the buen camino app only has the madrid route in spanish but camino tool shows all routes in an english interface
Actually, the basic features of the Buen Camino app for the Madrid route are in English. It just doesn't have as much detailed information for the route as it does for other routes.
 

paulgeis

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
2021
@trecile i tried both and just felt like camino tool works better for me. my workflow is to use the app to plan segments and book room and resupply between them. the physical maps are going to be for emergency situations.
 
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paulgeis

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
2021
figured out how to set my route to madrid:

my plan is determine long stretches between services and:

1) download the map for that segment
2) up on water and snacks
3) relay my location to one of my contacts in france
4) get rest if needed
 

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henrythedog

Loved and fed by David
Past OR future Camino
Frances 2017, 2018, 2019, Ingles 2018, (Madrid 2019 partial - retired hurt!) (more planned)
i don’t like people, joking.

to put it in an allegorical context i am crossing the abyss of my mind to be born again. i seek love through understanding of self and as a result i am being led on the quest for the grail but do not seek the grail…
Probably time for another nap?
 

lt56ny

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
2021
Trecile, The Buen Camino app on my phone still says from two years ago "will be updated in November or December", the link that you have here says 2020 version. How do I ensure that I have the latest version? Should I delete what I currently have on my phone and download anew from your link, or presumably the latest version from the App store? Thank you!
I was wondering that myself. I could not find any mention of updates on the app itself. I deleted the app and reinstalled it and did not see any differences. I am going to write them and ask them if there has been any updates besides bug fixes and the adding of the Chinese language last year. Why the Chinese language and not Korean is interesting to me. Their email address is info@editorialbuencamino.com to ask about future updates. I will write them to ask about any planned updates for the VDLP. I do not think they have updated albergue closing due to Covid. For that check Gronze.com.
 

trecile

Camino Addict
Past OR future Camino
Francés (2016 & 2017), Norte (2018), Francés-Salvador-Norte (2019), Portuguese (2019)
When I look at my list of apps in the Google Play store app on my Android phone it shows that the Buen Camino app updated on June 12th.
Screenshot_20210807-101646_Google Play Store.jpg

When I look at different towns in the app it does show some as CLOSED, and others as Temporarily Closed, so I believe they are keeping it as updated as they can. Always wise to double check with Gronze.
 
Camino Magnets
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When you walk the Camino, and suddenly a pandemic appears
Past OR future Camino
Frances 2016; Mansill de las Mulas to Finisterre/Muxia 2017; Aragones 2018; Suso/Yuso, Meseta 2019
Just a little while ago today I wrote to Buen Camino to ask about updates and how to ensure that I have the latest version. I have not yet received a reply, but It56ny, please do write to them yourself. It will show how much we value their efforts and appreciate well updated apps!
 
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how to successfully prepare for your Camino
This book's focus is on reducing the risk of failure through being well prepared.

biarritzdon

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
CF11, CF12, CP13, CF14, CA15, S.Anton15, CF&CI15
Ditch Pig16, CF&CP17, CdN18, CM18, CF18, LePuy19
I bailed out after Medina de Riosoco because the distances between albergues were greater and it was bloody hot, I almost wilted getting myself into Medina and spent a rest day sightseeing there to recuperate, I took a bus to Sahagun, backtracked to visit Reb and Paddy and then headed west to SdC.
 
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