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Journey info between Salamnca & Astorga

John P.

Can anyone share their experience between Salamanca and Astorga? I'm hoping to take that route next Dept/Oct. Many take the beautiful Ourense route.... but what can I expect cutting up through the maseta to Astorga?


John P.
The one from Galicia (the round) and the one from Castilla & Leon. Individually numbered and made by the same people that make the ones you see on your walk.
Salamanca to Astorga

I walked this octobre this route. The difference of the routes are the people. I decided during the last day wich route I take. I take the route over Astorga because the weather chances and on the Astorga route are more Alberges and I decided the daydistances with the weather. But the great difference are the people. On the last evening we where 6 persons om the Alberge and 50% go over Astorga. So I think during an day you meat 5 people there( on the VdlP the most where 8 during my trip, 4 time I stay alone) and over Astorga god bless you come in an rushhour. I must say I was shocked. I need one week or longer if I can stay under so many people. If you need people you must go over Astorga. From the landscape its better you go the other way (the most people go the first camino from SJPdP to Santiago). I decided for me the Astorga way as I see the satelite photos this year (Over Astorga I had only one week rain, over Qurense they had 3 days more and harder rain) and after 3 lonly week I need people. On the VdlP you find the silence. But too much silence is often too hard.
And atention after Salamanca they begin to build an great highway. I think it is hard what you see. What they do with the nature there.

Thanks Marcus! - The information was very helpful. The refuges on the Camino Frances were very full? Was it miserable for you?

Also, how far did you have to walk along within sight of the new freeway that they were building after Salamanca?

Thanks again!

John P.
Between Salamanca and Astorga the land is flatish and easy. Zamora, which you will pass through if you are going via Ourense is a town worth seeing, Benavente and La Baneza are less interesting and the villages are very quiet. You were often aware of the major road but it was not intrusive the rest of the time. Like Markus we chose that way as we wanted company but this was in 2002 and I understand there are more people on the Via de la Plata these days.

Buen Camino
The one from Galicia (the round) and the one from Castilla & Leon. Individually numbered and made by the same people that make the ones you see on your walk.
Hi William -

You guys (and others) have me thinking..... I'm very slow, maybe I should just start earlier in the Via de la Plata and END in Astorga. For this trip I wouldn't have the pushing on to get to Santiago and I might avoid some overcrowding (wow, who would have thought that the last week of September - and three weeks in October would be crowded!). Maybe I'll talk to my brother in law (he's going too)... he's never been on a camino - and he might want to experience some of the Frances....

Thanks for your unput ~

John P.
hard way

Hi John
you asked me if it was hard? I must say yes, I need the time until Santiago and i found at last to me as I walked out to Fistere. This was on this Camino my realy, my true end. As I reached the ocean. I found back to myself. For people to go the first time an Camino, I think tthey must go the Camino Frances. The VdlP is to hard. Outside and inside. I meet only 2 Person to do this Camino as her first one. One stoped after 10 days and the other (they start together) go than longer distances always by bus.
The new motorway destroy an part of the Camino 3 km (this year) and you must have and guide to find the route. Normaly I didn`t use one (I had it in my bacj pack. Next year I think its become harder or they marked the way new.
You have time to walked the distances. My longest was 48 km. And if you go realy the camino, I mean that you trust yourself and the way than I think it is no problem. The long distances are flat and endless.
yes its hard see where you be in 6 hour.
Hi, over the past two years I've walked the vdlp 5 times using combinations of routes from Granada, Seville, and Heulva going via the north portugese route, ourense and astorga. The only route I would not consider doing again is via astorga. From Granja de Moreruela to Astorga the majority of the route is on the road or very close to it. The pathways adjacent to the road are mostly mud based and with the weather as it was when I left Spain (15.11.) it would be hell to walk through forcing you to do more K on tarmac. Have you considered North portugal which rejoins vdlp at verin?? All the info you need can be obtained at tourist office Zamora from where the path splits. This route is one of the two best signed of the whole camino network. There are also 2 albergues on the 5 day walk. Pensions ( e10-e15) where there are none.
Thanks for those that have given me their inputs :)

Skye, What is it about the northern Portugal route that you enjoyed so much?


John P.
route via portugal

My recollection is that although there is some roadwork the majority of the path is in the country side on pista and track. The scenery is constantly changing, no mindnumbing long stretches and no industrial approaches to towns as you have in Spain. Saw wild boar in nature, about 15 mts away, and watched them for several minutes before they got our scent. The Portugese we met were without exception friendly and went out of their way to help and answer any questions. One point to bear in mind, Portugal in the area you walk through is very rural and it didnt seem to me that locals in villages knew much of the world outside. Several times we were assured that coffee/bar, or accommodation would be found in the next village only to find none. In Bragansa the only major town you go through, we had difficulty finding accommodation with hot water. I spoke to the tourist info office and got the reply, " I dont have hot water at home it's not unusual " Dont rely on info re food ,accommodation or distances given by locals. My experience is that
info you get will be at best inaccurate. Having said that its a beautiful walk with lovely people, the food is excellent the countryside unspoilt and your euro does go that bit further. Another plus, you really cant get lost, the signing is so good. Take care and if you decide on this route enjoy it Skye.
The 2024 Camino guides will be coming out little by little. Here is a collection of the ones that are out so far.

Thanks for the additional info. It's very helpful - and I'll load it into the mix of my decision making. Now, one of my biggest concerns is the plummeting dollar value against the euro - ouch!

John P.
Euro exchange rates

Spare a thought for us poor pilgrims from South Africa. Whereas the USD rate is E1 = $1.33 the South African Rand is E1 = R9.55
($1 = R7.50)

Since the 1980's the Big Mac is used as an index of purchasing power to compare the relative strength of currencies throughout the world.

The Big Mac Index (which basically uses the number of hours worked needed to be able to afford a Big Mac) shows that residents of Tokyo have the highest purchasing power in the world, edging out people in Toronto, Montreal, Los Angeles, Sydney, Australia, and London. This is according to a new survey by the Swiss banking giant UBS that uses the “Big Mac” as its benchmark.
Los Angeles 11 - Chicago 12 - Miami 12 - New York 13
Auckland, New Zealand 14 - Sydney, Australia 14
Toronto 14 - Montreal 17
Dublin, Ireland 15
Zurich, Switzerland 15 - Geneva 16
Frankfurt, Germany 16
London 16
Johannesburg, South Africa 30

If you are interested in this type of economics you can learn more at:
Skye, are you the guy who runs the albergue in Astorga?If so hello from a fellow Scot,if not hello anyway.---I stayed there overnight in May of this year.

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