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LIVE from the Camino How busy it is at the moment?

Antonius Vaessen

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
2015-2016 VdlPlata - Sanabres
2016.Primitivo
2017 Salvador
2018 Norte (to Sobrado)
2019 Norte again
I am walking the Camino frances at the moment. It is getting to crowded for me ( am in Puente d la Reina now) a bed race is developing. I am thinking of changing over to the Via de la Plata, starting in Salamanca. Can anybody who is walking there tell me how busy it is, also in relation to the available number of beds in albergues.I would not like to change from one bed race to another.
 
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Tincatinker

Moderator
Staff member
Past OR future Camino
2012
I am walking the Camino frances at the moment. It is getting to crowded for me ( am in Puente d la Reina now) a bed race is developing. I am thinking of changing over to the Via de la Plata, starting in Salamanca. Can anybody who is walking there tell me how busy it is, also in relation to the available number of beds in albergues.I would not like to change from one bed race to another.
Antonius, this is genuinely "live" from the Plata https://www.caminodesantiago.me/community/threads/the-writers-on-the-vdlp.73783/ you will not get better information or opinion
 

mspath

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
Frances, autumn/winter; 2004, 2005-2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015

geraldkelly

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
Camino Francés, Vía de la Plata / Camino Sanabrés, Camino del Baztán, Camino Aragonés, Chemin du Puy
I haven't heard any talk of full Albergues on the Via and I hear back from people walking fairly regularly.

That said, now that Easter and the May holidays are over I'm sure the Frances will settle into its normal summer torpor soon enough. if I was you I would give it a few more days before jumping ship, and try not stopping in the "guidebook stages".

I plan to be there in July.
 

GraemeHall

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
Francés 2017/18; Portugués 2019
I have to say...I am on my fifth day of Via de la Plata. I can tell you that there are a couple of big wave of hikers and pilgrims. Sometimes albergues are complete. Today we had to walk a further 6km to find a bed. Some groups are organising themselves into taxi groups to shorten stages. It's pretty competitive.
 
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I'm in Salamanca at present and it's perfect, but it looks like the usual resource issues are coming soon to a completo albergue near you. Why can't the people responsible for this get their act together at local level? Bed races are a nasty business and unless they get it sorted out they'll cause pilgrims a lot of grief. How hard is it to get someone in each village to coordinate? And keep the churches open? This 8s an ancient tradition and needs to be taken seriously, and also a goose that lays a lot of golden eggs. I carry a tent and a tarp so I'm ok, but I sympathise with those who are at the mercy of those responsible for dealing with these basic resource issues.
 

SabineP

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
some and then more. see my signature.
I'm in Salamanca at present and it's perfect, but it looks like the usual resource issues are coming soon to a completo albergue near you. Why can't the people responsible for this get their act together at local level? Bed races are a nasty business and unless they get it sorted out they'll cause pilgrims a lot of grief. How hard is it to get someone in each village to coordinate? And keep the churches open? This 8s an ancient tradition and needs to be taken seriously, and also a goose that lays a lot of golden eggs. I carry a tent and a tarp so I'm ok, but I sympathise with those who are at the mercy of those responsible for dealing with these basic resource issues.


Well it has been there since the 8th century so seems to have survived quite well.

The good thing about a Camino ( even the Francés ) is that all infrastructure developed in an organic way.
Groups of local amigos/tourism offices in regions who promote a certain stretch.
The only who get " their " act together on a local level is the Galican Xunta.

I guess that after Covid we shall all be creative when on a Camino.
Some villages were already strongly depopulated and dealing with an older generation. Post Covid I believe local politics/ayuntamientos have other stuff to deal with then facillitating for someone who passes by for one day and has different spending habits than the classic tourist at the costas.
 
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John Brierley 2022 Camino Guide
Get your today and start planning.
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Past OR future Camino
2017 Camino Frances,
2019 C. Portuguese (inland).
They come in tens they come in thousands,
Pilgrims from afar, in dresses and in trousers.
Some in search of a place to sleep,
Some in search of a place to weep.

Pilgrims far from home,
most of them alone.
Some carrying a solitary wish,
Others a weathered stone,
Some tired and feverish,
Others soaked to the bone.

Tired and hungry though they are,
No complaint from a single one,
And in their weary-bleary eyes
Ever-present is the watery sun.
 
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WildPlace

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
Camino Frances 2013, 2015
Via de la Plata 2022
Currently two days walk from Caceres having started in Sevilla. It has been busy, very busy at times and as there are two of us travelling together we’ve been able to utilise hostals and casa rurals as the cost between us is not too much more than an albergue. Lots of booking beds ahead going on - including us as being in the 60s and 70s age bracket we’re not too keen to rely on there being a free bed when we eventually rock into town. Didn’t expect to have to be booking on the VdlP but many many are like us and have had this planned since pre-covid times and have taken our soonest opportunity to travel. Busy or not we’re loving it though and meeting some great people including lots of forum members :)
 
F

Former member 99942

Guest
Because we are not the center of the universe and they have more important and pressing concerns. The big picture is people on the ground may be struggling, and we are less important than dealing with that.
No better way to help the local economy then by generating more revenue through tourism. More jobs, more money for local social projects etc.. There is an opportunity there for the local communities.
 
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F

Former member 95219

Guest
Blimey I am doing the VDLP in September and thought it would be very quiet. I have only done previous caminos in Covid times (CF and CP in 2020 and CN in 2021) and therefore in blissful peace with more accommodation than walkers! In for a rude awakening!
 

lt56ny

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
10/22 Aragones/Frances
No better way to help the local economy then by generating more revenue through tourism. More jobs, more money for local social projects etc.. There is an opportunity there for the local communities.
Your statement may be true of some of the caminos in small villages especially on the CF, CP. I do not know if you have walked on the VDLP. This is not a camino for everyone. It also has a pretty short season of when the vast majority of people would want to walk. There are very few who walk this camino. In 2019 only 9,200 received Compostelas and over 4,000 of them started in Ourense. The Sarria of the VDLP haha. There are very long stretches without towns or services. There are very few pilgrims walking. I can tell you that outside of private and municipal albergues virtually no business whatsoever thinks about Pilgrims as a source of generating revenue. Many of the villages that you stay in are tiny with very little in the way of services. There is little that could change this as this Camino as among others because of difficulty etc. will probably never be economic drivers.
I also believe that a pilgrimage can for some have all the conveniences a person may need. For other pilgrims, obviously like myself, simplicity and sacrifice and yes discomfort at times is a very important aspect of my pilgrimage experience. There are towns and cities that want this economic expansion. I have gotten the impression, and I may be entirely incorrect, but villages and small towns that are on less traveled caminos like things the way they are.
 
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