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Maybe a little late with my planning for le Puy...

Walden

Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2023 Camino Finesterre/Muxia
2024 Le Puy
I am very interested in walking from Le Puy to St. Jean in July. I've completed several other Caminos, so I am afraid I'm a little too casual with my prep for this one. I going to spend the next few days digging for info online, but if anyone would be willing to answer any of the queries, I would appreciate it.

I'm guessing nearest airport for le Puy is Lyon?
When landed in France, is the train or bus the better option to Le Puy?
Do I need to start booking accommodation already?
Are there any recommendations for a Gite in le Puy, to get started well.
Is the credential obtained in the first Gite, or the local church?
I have downloaded Wise Pilgrim and Buen Camino apps (Android). Are there any other resources for English speakers?
My French is almost non-existent, and my partners is school level. (But then I had no Spanish or Italian (Via Francegina) and got by okay in those countries.) Is it any more difficult then getting by in those countries?
Do I need a sleeping bag in July?
Why are there several names, le Puy Camino, Via Podiensis etc?


Many thanks to anyone patient enough to take the time to reply.
 
...and ship it to Santiago for storage. You pick it up once in Santiago. Service offered by Casa Ivar (we use DHL for transportation).
Hello @Walden

I like your planning strategy which largely matches my own!

I cannot help you at all with Le Puy though by chance yesterday I was looking at it a bit and just wondering!

Did you walk VF through France? I ask in relation to language.

I found that every bit of French you can muster is helpful. Certainly in rural France, which is most of the VF in France, you may well find little English spoken.

I can manage in French, Italian and Spanish - much spurred on by walking. I think it is a simple statement of my experience [rather than any kind of stereotyping which is not my intent] that Spanish and Italian people can understand mediocre Spanish and Italian more readily than French people can understand mediocre French. And that I think is largely to do with the accent. You do need to make quite an effort.

For the average English speaker, Spanish and Italian are easier to read "off the page|" (or your phone). English of course is very difficult to read off the page for someone who has very little of the language.

You won't regret doing a little bit of work on French before you go and it will always be appreciated. I stayed several times in France with families, and it is nice to be able to converse.

Otherwise just enjoy it. It can't be that difficult can it? :) And let us know.

As we all know you can manage a surprising amount with very little language. I walked across Albania and N Macedonia without more than greetings! And managed to have a lot of conversations along the way.

The one bit of information I see which keeps coming up is to be sure to go to the pilgrim mass in the cathedral in the morning before you leave and wait for the 'special surprise' for pilgrims at the end.......!
 
Miam Miam Dodo is a great guide book. Reservations are recommended, remember lots of French hikers do this route for short vacations, long weekends and over holiday periods. Bastille Day is in July. I took the train from Gare Lyon in Paris. I believe you can obtain a credential at the cathedral in le Puy. I would recommend spending at least a full day in Le Puy, it is quite interesting to visit.
 
€2,-/day will present your project to thousands of visitors each day. All interested in the Camino de Santiago.
Also take a look at, and make use of, the downloadpage of the Dutch Confraternity of Saint James. GPX/KML and accommodation list (PDF, also in English) of the Via Podiensis (GR65) from Le Puy en Velay to Saint-Jean-Pied-de-Port.
 
thanks guys. I'm afraid my French is non existent. But then so was my Portuguese in Portugal, Italian in Italy and Spanish in Spain. I think I can fly into Lyon, so maybe a bus from there?

Surely, its early to be booking yet?

Thanks for the replies.
 
It’s too early to book. If you walk alone, except for Le Puy, it is enough to book one day for the other. I advice the former séminaire in Le Puy for first night. Do not miss the mass at 7am before walking, whatever your belief or language is. At the end of office, you will get a surprise. You could get a credencial at Le Puy cathedral.
You could go to Le Puy by:
- landing at CDG.
- going to Gare de Lyon (RER + metro)
- TGV to Lyon. Train to St Etienne. Train to Le Puy.
Don’t be afraid and enjoy your Chemin !
(Official name is Voie du Puy, via Podiensis in Latin)
 
€2,-/day will present your project to thousands of visitors each day. All interested in the Camino de Santiago.
I started walking from LePuy on May 13 last year.

Train from Lyon via St. Etienne is easy, I took the train paris to Lyon so don't know about the lyon airport to downtown connection..

It's not too early to make reservations now. I'm booking now for a section Nasbinals to Rocamadour in September.

I carried a sleeping bag liner only. In May/June the gites provided blankets.

I speak only a little bit of French. But it was enough to make reservations over the phone even though I preferred text or email. I met a Polish woman who was making calls in English to find beds.

You can get a credencial at the cathedral book shop in Le Puy. IIRC, they are open early in the morning, but not late in the evening.

I used Wise Pilgrim but not Buen Camino on my Android phone. WP was good. I don't know about BC.
 
I am very interested in walking from Le Puy to St. Jean in July. I've completed several other Caminos, so I am afraid I'm a little too casual with my prep for this one. I going to spend the next few days digging for info online, but if anyone would be willing to answer any of the queries, I would appreciate it.

I'm guessing nearest airport for le Puy is Lyon?
When landed in France, is the train or bus the better option to Le Puy?
Do I need to start booking accommodation already?
Are there any recommendations for a Gite in le Puy, to get started well.
Is the credential obtained in the first Gite, or the local church?
I have downloaded Wise Pilgrim and Buen Camino apps (Android). Are there any other resources for English speakers?
My French is almost non-existent, and my partners is school level. (But then I had no Spanish or Italian (Via Francegina) and got by okay in those countries.) Is it any more difficult then getting by in those countries?
Do I need a sleeping bag in July?
Why are there several names, le Puy Camino, Via Podiensis etc?


Many thanks to anyone patient enough to take the time to reply.
 
I am very interested in walking from Le Puy to St. Jean in July. I've completed several other Caminos, so I am afraid I'm a little too casual with my prep for this one. I going to spend the next few days digging for info online, but if anyone would be willing to answer any of the queries, I would appreciate it.

I'm guessing nearest airport for le Puy is Lyon?
When landed in France, is the train or bus the better option to Le Puy?
Do I need to start booking accommodation already?
Are there any recommendations for a Gite in le Puy, to get started well.
Is the credential obtained in the first Gite, or the local church?
I have downloaded Wise Pilgrim and Buen Camino apps (Android). Are there any other resources for English speakers?
My French is almost non-existent, and my partners is school level. (But then I had no Spanish or Italian (Via Francegina) and got by okay in those countries.) Is it any more difficult then getting by in those countries?
Do I need a sleeping bag in July?
Why are there several names, le Puy Camino, Via Podiensis etc?


Many thanks to anyone patient enough to take the time to reply.

Suggest you read this well though out blog by Chloe Rose a Canadian journalist.

https://solocamino.com

You may wish to consider a more modest introduction to French pilgrim routes by walking from Lourdes to SJPD (8 days).

The key message you must take away is that you will need to be far more self sufficient carrying food & water when walking in France.

Enjoy
 
The focus is on reducing the risk of failure through being well prepared. 2nd ed.
While Lyon is a wonderful city you could also fly into Paris and spend a few nights there first (which is what I am doing; I look forward to shocking the Parisian fashionistas with my pilgrim attire) and then take the train to Le Puy from there (change in Lyon).
 
A selection of Camino Jewellery
Thank you to everyone who replied.

I've done several Caminos. I think one of the less facilitating was the Via Francegina to Rome. Many days with no facilities, and very few English speakers. I'm going to ok being the dumb non-French speaker, as long as they don't get too bothered.

I won't fly in to Paris, I'm not a big city guy. I spent over a month walking to Rome, and barely stayed there. I'll fly in to Lyon, and hop on a transport to Le Puy, then enjoy the vibe there. I know its not everybody's thing, but we are all different.

Thanks for recommending accommodation in Le Puy, and any other pieces of advice welcome.

Thanks everyone.
 
If you haven't already, check out the "On the Trail with Bart" YT page. He started the Le Puy last month and is on the Frances now.
He has been daily vlogging, starting from getting to the Le Puy and still going. He does a good job of showing the landscape, accommodations, services, etc.
 
I stayed at YHA in Le Puy. Didn't prebook. I bought the credential at the book shop at the cathedral with the Miam dodo book. I caught the train and bus from Lyon to Le Puy. Didn't prebook.
I booked one day ahead either at the tourist office in town where they spoke english or by asking the gite owners where you are staying. This was necessary if you require them to cook a meal. One day we didn't book ahead. We found a bed in a gite but they weren't prepared to feed us. We watched other pilgrims having gormet meals and we didn't have much to eat. I always carried two bottles of water about one and a half litres. Most places have a cemetery to get water but some little places don't. Enjoy the food.
 
The focus is on reducing the risk of failure through being well prepared. 2nd ed.
I’m also interested in the Via Podiensis and found the YouTube channel “Days We Spend” to be both informative and entertaining. The couple that make the series did the Le Puy-SJPdP walk and then continued on to Compostela.
 
Suggest you read this well though out blog by Chloe Rose a Canadian journalist.

https://solocamino.com

You may wish to consider a more modest introduction to French pilgrim routes by walking from Lourdes to SJPD (8 days).

The key message you must take away is that you will need to be far more self sufficient carrying food & water when walking in France.

Enjoy
and
thanks guys. I'm afraid my French is non existent. But then so was my Portuguese in Portugal, Italian in Italy and Spanish in Spain. I think I can fly into Lyon, so maybe a bus from there?

Surely, its early to be booking yet?

Thanks for the replies.
never too early to reserve accommodations on the Voie du Puy-en-Velay but, that said, July is much quieter on this path and the numbers drop off hugely so less competition for beds ...
 
thanks guys. I'm afraid my French is non existent. But then so was my Portuguese in Portugal, Italian in Italy and Spanish in Spain. I think I can fly into Lyon, so maybe a bus from there?

Surely, its early to be booking yet?

Thanks for the replies. from Lyon

Thank you to everyone who replied.

I've done several Caminos. I think one of the less facilitating was the Via Francegina to Rome. Many days with no facilities, and very few English speakers. I'm going to ok being the dumb non-French speaker, as long as they don't get too bothered.

I won't fly in to Paris, I'm not a big city guy. I spent over a month walking to Rome, and barely stayed there. I'll fly in to Lyon, and hop on a transport to Le Puy, then enjoy the vibe there. I know its not everybody's thing, but we are all different.

Thanks for recommending accommodation in Le Puy, and any other pieces of advice welcome.

Thanks everyone.
https://www.caminodesantiago.me/com...tions-and-services-on-the-le-puy-route.72418/
 
A selection of Camino Jewellery
I am very interested in walking from Le Puy to St. Jean in July. I've completed several other Caminos, so I am afraid I'm a little too casual with my prep for this one. I going to spend the next few days digging for info online, but if anyone would be willing to answer any of the queries, I would appreciate it.

I'm guessing nearest airport for le Puy is Lyon?
When landed in France, is the train or bus the better option to Le Puy?
Do I need to start booking accommodation already?
Are there any recommendations for a Gite in le Puy, to get started well.
Is the credential obtained in the first Gite, or the local church?
I have downloaded Wise Pilgrim and Buen Camino apps (Android). Are there any other resources for English speakers?
My French is almost non-existent, and my partners is school level. (But then I had no Spanish or Italian (Via Francegina) and got by okay in those countries.) Is it any more difficult then getting by in those countries?
Do I need a sleeping bag in July?
Why are there several names, le Puy Camino, Via Podiensis etc?


Many thanks to anyone patient enough to take the time to reply.
Best to take the train from Lyon [Part-Dieu train station] to Le Puy-en-Velay via Saint-Etienne where you make a quick and almost seamless change to the local train ... one connection, generally in the afternoon, is to a bus
------
if flying in to Paris CDG [and not staying overnight] there is a direct high-speed TGV train from the airport to Lyon and / or Saint-Etienne ... so no need to travel into central Paris and then across the city to Gare de Lyon ... this year in July, being an Olympics year, that might well be the best move ...
 
I am very interested in walking from Le Puy to St. Jean in July. I've completed several other Caminos, so I am afraid I'm a little too casual with my prep for this one. I going to spend the next few days digging for info online, but if anyone would be willing to answer any of the queries, I would appreciate it.

I'm guessing nearest airport for le Puy is Lyon?
When landed in France, is the train or bus the better option to Le Puy?
Do I need to start booking accommodation already?
Are there any recommendations for a Gite in le Puy, to get started well.
Is the credential obtained in the first Gite, or the local church?
I have downloaded Wise Pilgrim and Buen Camino apps (Android). Are there any other resources for English speakers?
My French is almost non-existent, and my partners is school level. (But then I had no Spanish or Italian (Via Francegina) and got by okay in those countries.) Is it any more difficult then getting by in those countries?
Do I need a sleeping bag in July?
Why are there several names, le Puy Camino, Via Podiensis etc?


Many thanks to anyone patient enough to take the time to reply.
neither Wise Pilgrim nor Buen Camino are up-to-date for the Le Puy route [aka Via Podiensis] certainly as far as accommodation is concerned; understandably their focus is much more on the camino routes in Spain ...
------
there are lots of resources available for english speakers re Via Podiensis, including Dave Whitson’s excellent guidebook published by Cicerone Press [reprinted already after just two years] and Melinda Lusmore’s e-guidebooks via her website : «I Love Walking in France»
------
You will not need a sleeping bag in July just an inner sheet; blankets [should you need one in the height of summer] are provided by almost everyone of the gîtes on this path ...
------
Good luck with your planning🤞 This is a beautiful path and you’re sure to love it ...
 
I am very interested in walking from Le Puy to St. Jean in July. I've completed several other Caminos, so I am afraid I'm a little too casual with my prep for this one. I going to spend the next few days digging for info online, but if anyone would be willing to answer any of the queries, I would appreciate it.

I'm guessing nearest airport for le Puy is Lyon?
When landed in France, is the train or bus the better option to Le Puy?
Do I need to start booking accommodation already?
Are there any recommendations for a Gite in le Puy, to get started well.
Is the credential obtained in the first Gite, or the local church?
I have downloaded Wise Pilgrim and Buen Camino apps (Android). Are there any other resources for English speakers?
My French is almost non-existent, and my partners is school level. (But then I had no Spanish or Italian (Via Francegina) and got by okay in those countries.) Is it any more difficult then getting by in those countries?
Do I need a sleeping bag in July?
Why are there several names, le Puy Camino, Via Podiensis etc?


Many thanks to anyone patient enough to take the time to reply.
neither Wise Pilgrim nor Buen Camino are up-to-date for the Le Puy route [aka Via Podiensis] certainly as far as accommodation is concerned; understandably their focus is much more on the camino routes in Spain ...
------
there are lots of resources available for english speakers re Via Podiensis, including Dave Whitson’s excellent guidebook published by Cicerone Press [reprinted already after just two years] and Melinda Lusmore’s e-guidebooks via her website : «I Love Walking in France»
------
You will not need a sleeping bag in July just an inner sheet; blankets [should you need one in the height of summer] are provided by almost everyone of the gîtes on this path ...
------
Good luck with your planning🤞 This is a beautiful path and you’re sure to love it ...
 
The 2024 Camino guides will be coming out little by little. Here is a collection of the ones that are out so far.
Hi @Walden
I have been thinking about Via Podiensis for a while but only decided and bought flight to Paris 6 weeks before I leave on 25 May. So, a very short notice Camino. This is what I found - but I don't know what things will be like in July and beyond.
How to get there - I arrive in Paris around 7 am and will take the 12.30 pm train to Le Puy. The other place to land is Lyon.
From my research so far ...
Do I need to start booking accommodation already -
Walking in southern France is a little different from Spain. You are walking through smaller towns and villages. The gites are smaller establishments that offer dinner, bed and breakfast - demi-pension. You can just get a bed and get your own food but sometimes that can be problematic in a small town - apparently.
I started booking about 8 days ago and found some of the interesting places like the Grand Seminair in Le Puy and later Domain du Sauvage were already booked out. I have never really booked ahead much - just at pinch points - but this time I have booked ahead to Conques and want to walk the Cele variant where I have been advised to book as well because it is very popular.
Are there any recommendations for a Gite in le Puy, to get started well.-Try for the Grand Seminair. It's a huge old monastary. There is a Franciscan Gite in Le Puy which also looked good but was already full. The Cathedral does a wonderful pilgrim mass in the morning to get everyone started.
Credential - at the Cathedral
Other resources -
Gronze.com (Google will translate to English or use translate function on your phone)
Le Puy Facebook page. That's where I have received a lot of info. The moderator, Bronwen, was quick to respond and very knowledgeable. You will find planning tools plus a giant spreadsheet of all accommodation some of which isn't on Gronze - but Gronze is easier to read.
I also watched a few of Efram Gonzales Vlogs on the Podiensis. They are lovely and gave me a better sense of where I was heading. I have only watched about 3 as I like being surprised by what if find.
My French - French has never felt like a user-friendly language for me. :( So, I will be using Google Translate or sitting quietly a lot or finding some English (or Latvian) speakers from time to time.
Do I need a sleeping bag in July? - Can't answer that but I am taking a lightweight bag and sleep sheet.
Why are there several names, le Puy Camino, Via Podiensis - Good question - will see if the rest of the thread gives me the answer.
Bon Chemin
EDIT - I purchased the eBook version of Dave Whitson's guidebook
 
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Why are there several names, le Puy Camino, Via Podiensis - Good question - will see if the rest of the thread gives me the answer
The official name is GR 65. French Long Distance Trail number 65. It was created in the 1970s. It is loosely based and inspired by the idea of medieval pilgrimage ways. As it starts (or ends) in the town of Le Puy - short for Le Puy-en-Velay - it is also called le chemin du Puy in French. Which translates into Latin as via Podiensis. Le Puy Camino is a new creation because there is a tendency now to call all such similar trails "Caminos".

PS: The word puy is apparently a French geological term for a hill or a volcanic hill in some regions of France. The Latin word is podium. Related to Puigdemont, a toponymic surname that you may or may not have heard of.
 
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Lots of good information here, and I'd like to add a couple of comments. But for reference I walked this path in 2013 and then on to Santiago via the Camino Frances so my comments are dated. Also, we started on April 2nd so there's that.

This is a very beautiful path and one where you will find considerable alone time. The countryside and villages are utterly charming. I found the local people very tolerant of my stumbling attempts to speak French. I'm sure you're aware that there are now endless translation apps if you are taking a phone along with you. It can be awkward just to text, but remember that some of those apps - including the Google app - also speak. And there are apps that speak translations quickly in both languages. So that may be helpful if just texting isn't enough. And, of course, there may be others pilgrims around who speak English.

One thing to pay attention to is when the local holidays are because stores and restaurants may be closed. These are mostly small villages you're walking through so are unlike larger cities in that way. Also - when I walked, the stores and usually restaurants were closed on Sundays and Mondays or in some places Tuesdays. So - especially if you're staying in an auberge) it's a good idea to always have a small storage of food (nuts, fruit, bread and cheese or whatever you like) in case there's nothing open. As mentioned above that's not necessary when you have a demi-pension.

And get used to saying Bon chemin instead of Buen camino! :)
 
Train for your next Camino (or keep the Camino spirit alive) on Santa Catalina Island
Also, we started on April 2nd so there's that.
Not sure if this is in keeping with the information Mr. Walden was looking for, but I would be interested in hearing how an early spring start on the Le Puy worked out for you, especially in regards to the weather. I realize that the number of pilgrims in 2013 might be different from today, but I'm considering walking through April in 2025 on the Le Puy in hopes that the number walking won't be as dramatic.
 
Lots of good advice above. A few other hints...

When you get to Lyon airport, the "Rhônexpress" is a metro that will take you into town. There are tons of signs. You can't miss it. This will take you downtown where you can catch the train to Le Puy. There is one train switches in St-Étienne, I believe. It's a super small station, so making the switch is pretty easy.

Make sure you go to 7:00AM Mass in Le Puy Cathedral. At the end, they open a grate leading to a set of stairs that takes you right onto the Camino. The very coolest start to a Camino you can have.

Most people book 2-3 days in advance, but I like my own room (I snore) so I booked the whole thing. If you're going to do that, I'd suggest starting soon, but I think I booked everything about a month in advance.

There are two main variants to the GR65. One to Rocamador and one to the Cele Valley. Try to do the Cele one if you can. Adds a few days, but it's beautiful. I took a rest day in Figeac and on my rest day took a bus to Rocamador. One of the coolest towns I've ever been too. Worth the visit.

Everyone recommends the Miam Do Do, but I used Dave Whitson's Cirone guide. That worked really well for me. Dave also has a list of tons of lodging on a spreadsheet here on the Forum. If you need help finding it, let me know.

I spoke no French. Had no problems.

If you get a chance, try to stay in a few Chambres d'Hotes. These are French bed and breakfasts that also serve dinner. Usually it's in a home where you'll eat dinner with the host. Great way to experience the country.

If you can, book a stay at the monastery in Conques. Conques may be the prettiest town on the Camino. The light show on the front of the Cathedral is very cool.

The first 10 days of the hike are the busiest. After Conques, the number of hikers drops significantly.

About 2-3 days before SJPDP, you have some options. I really like Saint-Palais. It's not right on the GR65, but it's on a variant. I walked this route twice, and both times walked to the town of Aroue (which is very small) and got a cab from there to Saint-Palais where I had a hotel room. The couple that works at the Gite there can give you lunch and help you get a cab. They're really sweet. Then I walked a variant route from Saint-Palais the next day. Whitson's book will make this clear.

Go to Vespers in Mosaic to hear the nuns sing. Heavenly.

I loved this route. Good choice!!!
 
Oh, and one more thing... Finishing in SJPDP is a lot different than finishing in Santiago. It's anti-climatic. No big Cathedral square to celebrate in. So keep your expectations a little lower for your finish. FWIW.... it is crazy to walk into SJPDP with is full of people (many talking English) after a month of walking mostly alone, and hearing virtually no English.
 
Get a spanish phone number with Airalo. eSim, so no physical SIM card. Easy to use app to add more funds if needed.
I finished in Pamplona as I loved walking the Pyrenees. Yes, it was an anticlimax but I think it was because it was my second camino I knew what to expect.
 
I took a train from Paris to Lyon, then transferred to another train to Le Puy. You will most likely have both a train and bus options to consider.
Btw, I have not read all of the many posts, so I apologize if my words are redundant to other posts.
 
Jarrad said: "Not sure if this is in keeping with the information Mr. Walden was looking for, but I would be interested in hearing how an early spring start on the Le Puy worked out for you, especially in regards to the weather. I realize that the number of pilgrims in 2013 might be different from today, but I'm considering walking through April in 2025 on the Le Puy in hopes that the number walking won't be as dramatic."

It was a beautiful day in Le Puy when we started and the temperature was pleasant. Cool in the mornings and quite warm midday. We did encounter snow up on the Aumont Aubrac plateau though - 3 or 4 inches one night up by Domain de Sauvage, but the temperature was never unpleasant and we were only in light snow for a couple of days. We started early because I wanted to get to the Camino Frances and Santiago de Compostela before it got really hot. Since I was 70 at the time I wanted to take whatever time I needed and not rush.

Because it was early spring, we wore boots. The path was really muddy and had running water on it much of the time for the first two or three weeks. Those in running shoes were very cold in the wet, slushy snow and mud (they said).
Spring had definitely arrived by the time we got off the plateau and spring flowers were everywhere. The weather was enjoyable - and it did everything - hot mid-day, cold, rainy, windy. I thought everything was beautiful and it was definitely brilliant green. No doubt there would have been more flowers two or three weeks later. All in all I prefer cool walking to hot walking.

There were enough people to make it interesting but not so many that we ever worried about finding a place to sleep. We never booked ahead more than for the next night and that was out of courtesy, not worry about beds.

I think Easter is the time to watch out for in France. It appears that at least half the nation takes a couple of weeks off and goes out for a hike in the countryside for the two weeks after Easter. That's possibly why the French are notoriously healthy! :) But those are two weeks in particular that you may have to watch for overcrowding and do some booking more than one day in advance.

It's a wonderful path to walk - beautiful scenery, wonderful little villages, kind people, and so interesting. Yes - very different from the Camino Frances as France and Spain are different. I love this camino path! Bon chemin!
 

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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.
I finished in Pamplona as I loved walking the Pyrenees. Yes, it was an anticlimax but I think it was because it was my second camino I knew what to expect.
When I reach SJPP after walking Podiensis, the hospitalero tells us:
"You have walked in France, you will walk in Spain. If you want to enjoy Camino Francés, try to forget all you know about Voie du Puy".
It is a wise advice, and should be told also to those who know the Francés before Voie du Puy: even if they can be compared, they should not because they have their own drawbacks and advantages.
 
Just wondering why the numbers get less as you go forward??
Because in France, many pilgrims do their Chemin part after part, namely by slices of 8-10 days.
Le Puy-Conques is doable within this time, and it is the most famous/beautiful segment of Voie du Puy. Moreover, arrival at Conques is something magical. Therefore many pilgrims do only this part. Another bound is Cahors, because Le Puy-Cahors can be walked in two weeks.
After Cahors, the decreasing of pilgrims is not noticeable (the next target is often SJPP).
 
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Train for your next Camino (or keep the Camino spirit alive) on Santa Catalina Island
I am very interested in walking from Le Puy to St. Jean in July. I've completed several other Caminos, so I am afraid I'm a little too casual with my prep for this one. I going to spend the next few days digging for info online, but if anyone would be willing to answer any of the queries, I would appreciate it.

I'm guessing nearest airport for le Puy is Lyon?
When landed in France, is the train or bus the better option to Le Puy?
Do I need to start booking accommodation already?
Are there any recommendations for a Gite in le Puy, to get started well.
Is the credential obtained in the first Gite, or the local church?
I have downloaded Wise Pilgrim and Buen Camino apps (Android). Are there any other resources for English speakers?
My French is almost non-existent, and my partners is school level. (But then I had no Spanish or Italian (Via Francegina) and got by okay in those countries.) Is it any more difficult then getting by in those countries?
Do I need a sleeping bag in July?
Why are there several names, le Puy Camino, Via Podiensis etc?


Many thanks to anyone patient enough to take the time to reply.

From my experience, I'll try to answer what I can.

"I'm guessing nearest airport for le Puy is Lyon? When landed in France, is the train or bus the better option to Le Puy?"
-I believe so on Lyon, thats where I landed. The train is super easy, I think I had to switch lines once between Lyon and Le Puy.

Do I need to start booking accommodation already?
-Doesn't hurt. It is not uncommon for people to book on Le Puy far in avdance.

Are there any recommendations for a Gite in le Puy, to get started well.
-There's a monastary attached to the cathedral I think that is well reviewed, it was full when I went.

Is the credential obtained in the first Gite, or the local church?
-At the cathedral in Le Puy

I have downloaded Wise Pilgrim and Buen Camino apps (Android). Are there any other resources for English speakers?
-Buen Camino worked well for me on the road, Miam Miam Dodo for planning (not english though)

My French is almost non-existent, and my partners is school level. Is it any more difficult then getting by in those countries?
-I can't speak to the VF, but I studied French for 9 months prior to going and am really glad I did as almost all the gite owners only speak French and many of the hikers. I wouldn't have been able to book accomodations without it or participate in dinners and follow the instructions of the propriataires. The farther down the trail I went, the more strictly French it became. I used DuoLingo and Netflix

Do I need a sleeping bag in July?
-Absolutely not

Why are there several names, le Puy Camino, Via Podiensis etc?
Spanish name and french name is my guess.

Good luck! And Bon Chemin!
 
If you haven't already, check out the "On the Trail with Bart" YT page. He started the Le Puy last month and is on the Frances now.
He has been daily vlogging, starting from getting to the Le Puy and still going. He does a good job of showing the landscape, accommodations, services, etc.
Thanks jcat. Will do.
 
T
Oh, and one more thing... Finishing in SJPDP is a lot different than finishing in Santiago. It's anti-climatic. No big Cathedral square to celebrate in. So keep your expectations a little lower for your finish. FWIW.... it is crazy to walk into SJPDP with is full of people (many talking English) after a month of walking mostly alone, and hearing virtually no Englis
Brilliant Bill. Great help thank you. I am definitely not a Santiago fan so this wont bother me. I actively plan on skipping through Santiago when I get to that point every time. Too touristy and crowded. I love getting past Santiago and back on the trail again.

I'm looking forward to less hectic trails in France. Do you guts think light rain gear would suffice for July. I never used my rain gear once in July in Italy, and only for half a day during the month in Portugal. But is France a bit less sunny and dry than Spain?

Lastly, any suggestions for any nice secular gites in Le Puy, to get started.


Thank you to everyone who has contributed. You are a great community.
 
The 2024 Camino guides will be coming out little by little. Here is a collection of the ones that are out so far.
But is France a bit less sunny and dry than Spain?
Yes indeed it is, but in July a light rain clothe should be sufficient.
Lastly, any suggestions for any nice secular gites in Le Puy, to get started.
I do not understand what you mean exactly by "secular".
Grand Séminaire Accueil St Georges is not exactly "secular" because it is ran by religious. But you will not asked your religion, and not forced to anything. For me it is the best start.
Another advice is to begin your Camino by the 7am every day mass at the cathedral, even if you do not understand french, even if you are not a christian. It is a good start.
 
Yes indeed it is, but in July a light rain clothe should be sufficient.

I do not understand what you mean exactly by "secular".
Grand Séminaire Accueil St Georges is not exactly "secular" because it is ran by religious. But you will not asked your religion, and not forced to anything. For me it is the best start.
Another advice is to begin your Camino by the 7am every day mass at the cathedral, even if you do not understand french, even if you are not a christian. It is a good start.
Thanks for taking the time to reply. It's starting to take shape nicely now. Flights in, first night accommodation, and the rest will just have to unfold as I go.
 
From my experience, I'll try to answer what I can.

"I'm guessing nearest airport for le Puy is Lyon? When landed in France, is the train or bus the better option to Le Puy?"
-I believe so on Lyon, thats where I landed. The train is super easy, I think I had to switch lines once between Lyon and Le Puy.

Do I need to start booking accommodation already?
-Doesn't hurt. It is not uncommon for people to book on Le Puy far in avdance.

Are there any recommendations for a Gite in le Puy, to get started well.
-There's a monastary attached to the cathedral I think that is well reviewed, it was full when I went.

Is the credential obtained in the first Gite, or the local church?
-At the cathedral in Le Puy

I have downloaded Wise Pilgrim and Buen Camino apps (Android). Are there any other resources for English speakers?
-Buen Camino worked well for me on the road, Miam Miam Dodo for planning (not english though)

My French is almost non-existent, and my partners is school level. Is it any more difficult then getting by in those countries?
-I can't speak to the VF, but I studied French for 9 months prior to going and am really glad I did as almost all the gite owners only speak French and many of the hikers. I wouldn't have been able to book accomodations without it or participate in dinners and follow the instructions of the propriataires. The farther down the trail I went, the more strictly French it became. I used DuoLingo and Netflix

Do I need a sleeping bag in July?
-Absolutely not

Why are there several names, le Puy Camino, Via Podiensis etc?
Spanish name and french name is my guess.

Good luck! And Bon Chemin!
Brilliant. Love the style of reply too. I guess I'm going to be the dumb English only speaker again this year. :(

But then my Polish friend says I'm fortunate as they have to get by everywhere.
Thank you for the detailed reply.
 
€2,-/day will present your project to thousands of visitors each day. All interested in the Camino de Santiago.

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