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Live - Camino Ingles Looking (and sounding!) like the road from Sarria

D

Deleted member 89957

Guest
We walked the Camino Ingles between 29th Sept and 4th October. On Day 2 - Neda to Pontedeume - I counted around 50 pilgrims and this included a large group of German ladies. Otherwise, the rest of the days there were around 20-25 of us - the same familiar faces every day who at times we passed, and were passed by and many of whom we chatted with along the Way or over lunch at rest stops or dinner at night. It was wonderful to bump into several of our Camino friends in SdC and know that everyone made it! Lots of hugs, photos and even selfies (a group of 4 Portuguese pilgrims were such good fun - singing and in general high spirits every time we saw them on the Camino). It was this wonderful sense of community that we loved and will remember from our Camino.

I chatted with the lady who runs the rest stop at the bottom of the very steep descent into Miño and asked her how many pilgrims pass through daily. She said 500-600 a day!!! I couldn't believe it because we were only seeing around 20-25. She told me that many of these numbers are attributable to coach "tours". Essentially, a group of 50 will walk from Pontedeume to her rest stop and then a coach will arrive, pick them up and bus them to Betanzos. So it seems that there are large groups walking half of the daily section and then moving onto the next town. I am assuming these groups are not claiming their Compostelas at the end as they have not walked the full last 100km. We met a group of German ladies on one of the steep ascents that day, saw them at dinner that night at the same restaurant in Betanzos and then saw them head off towards Bruma the following morning although we never saw them again on that 25km stretch. We wondered if they were only walking to Presedo that day.

The Albergues were full at every stop except at Neda which was around 75% full. We only stayed at the Neda albergue and booked private accomodation for the rest of the Way. We were told that all the beds had gone at Pontedeume and Bruma by 4pm and 2pm respectively on the days we arrived. Bruma had a group booking of young students and I really felt for a group of 4 Taiwanese pilgrims who had to walk a further 7km from Bruma to A Rua to the only accomodation they could find for the night. We pre-booked 2 days previously at the beautiful Casa Rural Costa de Egoa in Carral after being warned about the bed race to Bruma which neither of us were up for. The host kindly picked us up from the Bruma albergue and we took a taxi back to it the following morning to resume the Camino. The hospitalero and hospitalera at the Bruma Albergue were very friendly and happily stamped our Credencials even though we weren't staying at the Albergue (all beds were long gone anyway when we arrived at 6pm) and the hospitalero was showing me a chart of the elevation for the A Coruna route up to to Bruma (it looked much worse!) and we had a chat about it for a few minutes.

I was also subsequently told that the Miño albergue was full on the day we walked to Betanzos. The 2nd new Albergue in Betanzos only had 4 pilgrims staying in it (according to a couple who stayed at it together with their very young children - they were walking the Camino with a 6 month old baby strapped to mum and Dad pushing a 2.5 year old in a buggy, and they were fast walkers - we were in absolute awe of them!).

There is no municipal albergue in Sigüeiro and we had a pre-booked room at the Camino Real Albergue which was lovely. Even that was almost full when we arrived.

I met another Irish pilgrim who stayed at the Albergue in Poulo and she said there had only been 3 of them staying there.
 

gerip

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF, Lourdes to Burgos, Oct 2018
CF, Burgos to Santiago, May 2019
Ingles, Sep - Oct 2019
We walked the Camino Ingles between 29th Sept and 4th October. On Day 2 - Neda to Pontedeume - I counted around 50 pilgrims and this included a large group of German ladies. Otherwise, the rest of the days there were around 20-25 of us - the same familiar faces every day who at times we passed, and were passed by and many of whom we chatted with along the Way or over lunch at rest stops or dinner at night. It was wonderful to bump into several of our Camino friends in SdC and know that everyone made it! Lots of hugs, photos and even selfies (a group of 4 Portuguese pilgrims were such good fun - singing and in general high spirits every time we saw them on the Camino). It was this wonderful sense of community that we loved and will remember from our Camino.

I chatted with the lady who runs the rest stop at the bottom of the very steep descent into Miño and asked her how many pilgrims pass through daily. She said 500-600 a day!!! I couldn't believe it because we were only seeing around 20-25. She told me that many of these numbers are attributable to coach "tours". Essentially, a group of 50 will walk from Pontedeume to her rest stop and then a coach will arrive, pick them up and bus them to Betanzos. So it seems that there are large groups walking half of the daily section and then moving onto the next town. I am assuming these groups are not claiming their Compostelas at the end as they have not walked the full last 100km. We met a group of German ladies on one of the steep ascents that day, saw them at dinner that night at the same restaurant in Betanzos and then saw them head off towards Bruma the following morning although we never saw them again on that 25km stretch. We wondered if they were only walking to Presedo that day.

The Albergues were full at every stop except at Neda which was around 75% full. We only stayed at the Neda albergue and booked private accomodation for the rest of the Way. We were told that all the beds had gone at Pontedeume and Bruma by 4pm and 2pm respectively on the days we arrived. Bruma had a group booking of young students and I really felt for a group of 4 Taiwanese pilgrims who had to walk a further 7km from Bruma to A Rua to the only accomodation they could find for the night. We pre-booked 2 days previously at the beautiful Casa Rural Costa de Egoa in Carral after being warned about the bed race to Bruma which neither of us were up for. The host kindly picked us up from the Bruma albergue and we took a taxi back to it the following morning to resume the Camino. The hospitalero and hospitalera at the Bruma Albergue were very friendly and happily stamped our Credencials even though we weren't staying at the Albergue (all beds were long gone anyway when we arrived at 6pm) and the hospitalero was showing me a chart of the elevation for the A Coruna route up to to Bruma (it looked much worse!) and we had a chat about it for a few minutes.

I was also subsequently told that the Miño albergue was full on the day we walked to Betanzos. The 2nd new Albergue in Betanzos only had 4 pilgrims staying in it (according to a couple who stayed at it together with their very young children - they were walking the Camino with a 6 month old baby strapped to mum and Dad pushing a 2.5 year old in a buggy, and they were fast walkers - we were in absolute awe of them!).

There is no municipal albergue in Sigüeiro and we had a pre-booked room at the Camino Real Albergue which was lovely. Even that was almost full when we arrived.

I met another Irish pilgrim who stayed at the Albergue in Poulo and she said there had only been 3 of them staying there.
Wow! What a difference three days makes! But I think someone has mentioned before that most pilgrims start the Ferrol on a weekend, which may account for the full albergues you encountered. I never tried for Pontedeume, but excepting Presedo all the other albergues were less than half. In fact when I checked into Poulo I was praying for another pilgrim to come along, one finally did, when she decided she didn’t like the looks of the peregrinos staying at Bruma. Can’t recommend the place though, too close to the cemetery, which seems to have had lots of recent burials.......🤢
 
D

Deleted member 89957

Guest
Wow! What a difference three days makes! But I think someone has mentioned before that most pilgrims start the Ferrol on a weekend, which may account for the full albergues you encountered. I never tried for Pontedeume, but excepting Presedo all the other albergues were less than half. In fact when I checked into Poulo I was praying for another pilgrim to come along, one finally did, when she decided she didn’t like the looks of the peregrinos staying at Bruma. Can’t recommend the place though, too close to the cemetery, which seems to have had lots of recent burials.......🤢
The Irish pilgrim told me the Poulo albergue had a funny smell which she attributed to the fresh paint/ renovation work smells. Another pilgrim we met on the way from Sigüeiro to SdC stayed at the Poulo albergue too and was convinced the smell came from the cemetery nearby!!!!

I had also read that many pilgrims start the Ingles from Ferrol at the weekend.
 

Tia Valeria

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Pt Norte/Pmtvo 2010
C. Inglés 2011
C. Primitivo '12
Norte-C. de la Reina '13
C. do Mar-C. Inglés '15
I become increasingly glad that we walked this route in 2011 and 2015, since when we have visited but not walked a Camino.
It seems that the new queuing system has simply moved the wait from daytime to very early morning. The law of unintended consequences??
As for the numbers walking - in 2015 we got the last (triple) room in the Garelos in Betanzos and there were more walkers than normal because of a large party. They even served 2 breakfast turns because we could not all fit in the dining room. Other than that in 2011 we had about 16 of us in the albergue at Miño which was the most we saw that year.
 

gerip

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF, Lourdes to Burgos, Oct 2018
CF, Burgos to Santiago, May 2019
Ingles, Sep - Oct 2019
The Irish pilgrim told me the Poulo albergue had a funny smell which she attributed to the fresh paint/ renovation work smells. Another pilgrim we met on the way from Sigüeiro to SdC stayed at the Poulo albergue too and was convinced the smell came from the cemetery nearby!!!!

I had also read that many pilgrims start the Ingles from Ferrol at the weekend.
There is no mistaking the smell of decaying flesh. Sorry. It’s a shame too, because the place has been beautifully renovated, and it’s right on the Camino.
 

gerip

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF, Lourdes to Burgos, Oct 2018
CF, Burgos to Santiago, May 2019
Ingles, Sep - Oct 2019
I chatted with the lady who runs the rest stop at the bottom of the very steep descent into Miño and asked her how many pilgrims pass through daily. She said 500-600 a day!!! I couldn't believe it because we were only seeing around 20-25.
There was a group of about a dozen from Texas walking, and I ran into another group from the UK, both groups were supported, being picked up at the end of the day and taken to their respective hotels. Ran into them just before and after Bruma. Then there was what seemed the entire student population of an Italian middle school, and a group of Dutch ladies. None of these staying at albergues, though.
 

mylifeonvacation

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Inglés (from Ferrol June 2014)
Camino Portuguese (from Tui May 2015)
500-600 people per day on the Ingles? Smell of decaying flesh?? I'm having a little trouble with both of these statements - were there some posts deleted after these were discussed? I see the person who made these statements is now a "deleted member". Still, I would hate for a newbie to read these things and take them for fact.

I think the lady obviously must have meant 50-60 people per day - and that would be in the busiest summer months.
Smells from a nearby cemetery ... I don't even know what to say about this aside from, ah, no. 🤔
 

gerip

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF, Lourdes to Burgos, Oct 2018
CF, Burgos to Santiago, May 2019
Ingles, Sep - Oct 2019
500-600 people per day on the Ingles? Smell of decaying flesh?? I'm having a little trouble with both of these statements - were there some posts deleted after these were discussed? I see the person who made these statements is now a "deleted member". Still, I would hate for a newbie to read these things and take them for fact.

I think the lady obviously must have meant 50-60 people per day - and that would be in the busiest summer months.
Smells from a nearby cemetery ... I don't even know what to say about this aside from, ah, no. 🤔
Don't know about the 500 - 600, I didn't see any evidence. But the Poulo albergue was once the rectory of the local church, which you can see out the windows, along with the cemetery. Maria the hospitalera asked me to pray for more pilgrims to come stay there. The place has only been open for three months, she keeps all the doors open downstairs and stands outside smoking to ward off the smell. At first I thought an animal might have gotten trapped under the floor or in a wall during the refurbishment, but then I realised where the smell was actually coming from......
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Inglés (2019)
I'm from Galicia and I've been to a few cemeteries... not once have I smelled decaying flesh. Plus, if the smell really came from the cemetery, why would the hospitalera keep all doors open? If there's a bad smell outside, you keep your windows and doors closed. Some of the stuff they use as fertiliser in the countryside really stinks but when that happens, as I said, you keep your house as closed as possible.

Regarding the 500-600 people... I agree with @mylifeonvacation that it's probably 50-60. The statistics on the Pilgrims Office website haven't been updated since June, but you can see that less than 2000 pilgrims completed their Camino Inglés that month, in the whole month. The route couldn't cope with 500-600 pilgrims per day.
 
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Pa Dinneen Camino Ingles 8
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