Search over 55.000 Camino Questions

A donation to the forum removes ads for you, and supports Ivar in his work running it

Advertisement

***** MAYBE SILLY QUESTIONS *****

robert26

New Member
I hope to walk the Camino Frances in April/May 2010.

Here are some things going through my head; I would welcome any feedback. Thank you.

How do I get to St. Jean Pied de Port from Canada?

Should I bring a sleeping bag?

Do the hostels have sheets and blankets and mattresses on the beds?

Are there showers in the hostels?

Hot water?

Are towels supplied?

Are there wild dogs or wolves on the Camino?

If I arrive at a small town one evening and I am totally tired and exhausted and all hotels and hostels are full, what do I do?

Is there a site I can go to, on line, that lists all towns and villages on the Camino Frances, in order, with a small write-up on each place? (I find that with the guidebooks it's 'infornation overload').
I need just a basic sheet of paper, or two, with everything listed.

Also, once I reach Santiago de Composta, how do I go about getting a flight back to Canada? I do not know how long it will take to get there so I can not really book a return flight in advance? What would be my first step?

I am sorry if these are 'silly questions' but any help or advice you can give me would be greatly appreciated,
 

Arn

Veteran Member
Robert... welcome to the Forum and the Class of 2010.

You will find that there's seldom a silly question...or at least not one that hasn't already been answered. The members of the Forum are going to flood you with info and personal "the Way I did it". All points are valid...for them. You will find that the Camino decides and, once you accept that...the rest is all up hill...literally.

There is a raft of info on the Forum. May I suggest you check the following:

1. The Pilgrim FAQ at the top right of the page.
2. The Class of 2010 to see whom else may be walking the Way at the same time
3. The Camino Calendar at the bottom of the page will also show whom is walking, from where and it also lists key events along the Way.
4. There's also a "search" capability at the top right. You can enter a keyword, such as: "food", "refuge Leon" and it will search the Forum and return links.
5. Another great resource is:

http://www.mundicamino.com/

Hope that helps,

Buen Camino,
Arn
 

William Marques

Moderator
Staff member
robert26 said:
I hope to walk the Camino Frances in April/May 2010.
Here are some things going through my head; I would welcome any feedback. Thank you.

How do I get to St. Jean Pied de Port from Canada?
Check out sites such as Expedia for flights from your nearest international airport to Paris, London and Madrid. There can be some big differences. From there you can get a train or plane as applicable just look at the Travelling to and from the Camino section.

Should I bring a sleeping bag?
Yes

Do the hostels have sheets and blankets and mattresses on the beds?
By hostel I assume you mean refugio/albergue. Hostales in Spain are cheap hotels.
Sheets - No. Blankets - Sometimes. Mattresses - Yes

Are there showers and hot water in the hostels?
Yes there are showers and the water varies from hot to warm to cold.

Are towels supplied?
Not at the refugios/albergues

Are there wild dogs or wolves on the Camino?
No wolves and most dogs are OK.

If I arrive at a small town one evening and I am totally tired and exhausted and all hotels and hostels are full, what do I do?
Get a bus forwards or backwards to the next town. You will normally arrive much earlier than the evening.

Is there a site I can go to, on line, that lists all towns and villages on the Camino Frances, in order, with a small write-up on each place? (I find that with the guidebooks it's 'information overload'). I need just a basic sheet of paper, or two, with everything listed.
As Arn has said Mundicamino.

Also, once I reach Santiago de Composta, how do I go about getting a flight back to Canada? I do not know how long it will take to get there so I can not really book a return flight in advance? What would be my first step?
Get a flight or train back to the town you flew into from Canada. Booking a return flight is normally much cheaper and if you can get one you can alter for a moderate fee it will be cheaper that two singles.
 

sillydoll

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
2002 CF: 2004 from Paris: 2006 VF: 2007 CF: 2009 Aragones, Ingles, Finisterre: 2011 X 2 on CF: 2013 'Caracoles': 2014 CF and Ingles 'Caracoles":2015 Logrono-Burgos (Hospitalero San Anton): 2016 La Douay to Aosta/San Gimignano to Rome:
Is there a site I can go to, on line, that lists all towns and villages on the Camino Frances, in order, with a small write-up on each place? (I find that with the guidebooks it's 'infornation overload').
I need just a basic sheet of paper, or two, with everything listed.

Phsew!! A basic sheet of paper or two with everything listed to cover 800km, 3 mountain ranges, +75 rivers and bridges, basic description of about 250 towns and villages, 400 monuments, 2000 years of history and a description of the facilities of all the places to stay??? Not possible!

Guidebooks might have an overload of info but it would be really worthwhile to read at least one guide book. If you really don't have time to do any research, try the Confraternity of St James guide to the Camino Frances. It is very basic, no pictures, lists main sights and monuments to see, gives a little of the history of each place, a list of all the albergues and the facilities they provide as well as a mileage countdown to Santiago. Its a down-to-earth, basic guide with 75 A5 pages of easy reading.
http://www.csj.org.uk Click on Bookshop to order your copy.
 

Catalinda

New Member
I will second that there are no silly questions when it comes to the camino.

robert26 said:
How do I get to St. Jean Pied de Port from Canada?

I'm not 100% sure about Canada, but I will be traveling from Minnesota (tickets purchased on Orbitz) to Paris, then taking a train from Paris to Bayonne, then a bus to St Jean (there is normally a train, but they are working on the track)

We've figured this was the easiest way with the fewest transfers. Plus flying into Paris is cheaper than flying into Madrid, for some strange reason.

Good Luck!
 

crhutch

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
(2010) March/April SJPP to Santiago and hence to Finisterre
(2016) Hospitalero Grañón 15-31 March
(2016) April Logroño to Santiago
(2017) Hospitalero Zamora 15-31 March
(2017) Hospilatero Emaus, Burgos 1-14 April
I'll second Mundicamino as an excellent site. Another decent site is http://caminodesantiago.consumer.es/. Although in Spanish, it is very thorough. You can use Google Translate if you don't understand Spanish.

Buena suerte y buen camino
 

johnBCCanada

Active Member
Hi

about getting home from Santigo caan I suggest you book a return ticket simply leaving yourself lots of time. spend the extra time resting, sightseeing, meeting your fellow pilgrims etc. From Santiago you can easily get a cheap flight (Ryanair or Easyjet) to Madrid or London.

Basic travel Spanish thru BBC. Not necessary but improves the experience I think.



Buen Camino

john
 

Tim-the-fat-Canadian

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
SJPP (2010); Leon (2012); Leon (2013);SJPP Sept 2018
I am walking the Camino in March and April. Months of reseach has proven that the cheapest and easy way from Toronto is to take Air France direct flight to Paris. At Paris, you have to change airports (same as London) but Air France has their own shuttle buses. Then still with Air France, fly into Biarritz. From Biarritz take bus (because train is not working) to SJPP.

I am still working out how to get back to Biarritz from Santiago (if anyone has any ideas, please let me know - there appears to be no flights between these two cities).
My return ticket cost Toronto to Bizarritz and back is $1030 including taxes. Cost for changes should I decide to come home earlier, or to stay longer, is $200.

Tim
 

William Marques

Moderator
Staff member
I think your best bet to get back to Paris will be with Vueling which was ClickAir. They fly direct from Santiago
http://www.vueling.com/?language=EN

It is wise to book well ahead for two reasons:
1. Flights will be cheaper booked well ahead.
2. Availability this summer may be scarce as it is Holy Year, I already looked at one day in May as a trial and it was fully booked.

Buen Camino

William
 
@Tim - if you have some time to spare, you can take a train from
(1) Santiago to Hendaye. Then bus to Biarritz.
(2) Santiago to any coastal town eg Santander or Bilbao. Overnight for some R&R. (I stopped in BIlbao as I had wanted to visit the Guggenheim) Then bus into Biarritz.
I am presuming you would like to get to Biarritz because you may have a return flight from Biarritz to Paris. Else you can take an overnight train from Handaye or Biarritz to Paris.

I had found the train journey very interesting as it passes through the northern coastal region.

Buen Camino.

@Robert - unless it is a very long page you are looking at, it is not possible to list all the towns and villages you will be passing through during the almost 800km walk from SJPP to Santiago.

http://www.mundicamino.com/ (click on Camino Frances, on the right)

http://www.caminodesantiago.me/camino-w ... anc%C3%A9s (Look at "This camino day-by-day)

The above two links provide the suggested walking stages day-by-day, and the km for each stage. For example your day 1 could be from SJPP to Roncesvalles; and your day 2 could be from Roncesvalles to Estella.

You can then REFER to the guidebook/s
1) for the available albergues, and hostels.
2) to get an idea on the towns/villages you will be walking past, looking out for places/monuments of interest.

Depending on how much planning you wish, a quick read through in this manner will not take too much effort. If you wish, you do not even need to read the guide at all. Just know that you will start from SJPP. Refer to the guide only when you are in SJPP, and only to have an idea on whats ahead for the day.

Hence, keeping the suggested stages as indicative, during your journey/walk, you can review each stage the night before the next day's walk.

As you are travelling a long distance to arrive at SJPP, you may wish to check out, and book, a place to stay for the night, to rest well, before start the walk the next day.

That was how I had "planned" my camino. I had not the patience (nor the time) to research and read about every town/village and places of interest. That said, I had found I had missed quite a few places of interest and have decided I will walk the Frances again. And this time, I will plan a little differently.

Good luck and Buen Camino.
 

kkcamino

New Member
Robert,

I flew from Canada and back last March/April.

I flew to Amsterdam, then Lyon, then Biarritz. It cost just slightly more than to Paris, but I felt it easier to get to Biarritz directly by plane. It was then a short bus ride to Bayonne, then the train to St. Jean.

Coming home, I caught the train from Santiago to Madrid, caught the subway to the airport, and flew back home again directly from Madrid.

Buen Camino!
 

kkcamino

New Member
Let me suggest that you purchase A Pilgrim’s guide to the Camino de Santiago by John Brierley. I bought it beforehand to help me with my preplanning, and brought it with me.

I too felt that all I needed was a sheet or two, and I almost left my Brierley guide behind in St. Jean when I received the few pages of maps and albergues from the Association office. I am very glad that I decided to keep it with me.

Each night I would review it, and discuss potential next stops with others. A few things would happen. Others would want to borrow the Brierley guide since it was better than what they had, and was far more descriptive. At the same time, some people may have walked before and had recommendations, and others may have heard things about certain albergues, so that could affect the plan for the next few days. Certainly during the first third or so of the pilgrim walk, there was a group that had formed over the first few days and was very compatible, so we all chose to arrive at the same spot for the night.

Since early on I decided to enjoy the communal meals that we prepared in the albergue kitchens and shared amongst ourselves along with a few bottles of wine, it was helpful to have the Brierley guide which gives good descriptions including which albergues have kitchen facilities.

I’m sure any stage by stage guide is good, as long as you remember that it is just a guide, and to keep flexible. Your experience is going to be enriched by the people you meet, and the conversations you share. Having the Brierley guide added to my experience, also.

Buen Camino!
 
D

Deleted member 3000

Guest
Without a guide book, you will pass many interesting things and places without knowing what they are!
 

nellpilgrim

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
SDC-Fisterra 08/Camino Frances SJPP to SDC 09/Nuremburg-SDC 11- ongoing
falcon269 said:
Without a guide book, you will pass many interesting things and places without knowing what they are!
I'll second that. Stopping to take in the environment sounds 'a given' when you're at the planning stage-but sometimes when you're actually 'slogging along' it's hard to give yourself time to pause, and our guide book helped us to do that. We wouldn't have made the effort to detour to Eunate, Suso, Yuso and Cana without the impetus from Brierleys guide and it would have been such a pity to miss those places.
Even if you don't actually stop I found just knowing/understanding a little about a structures or places we passed enriched my journey-so well worth the weight!
Nell
 
Re: There are NO silly questions!!

Hello.
for accomodation which are not mentioned in the usual pilgrims guides just check out my accomodation guide.
http://www.jakobusfreunde-paderborn.eu/Download.html
under
"Unser Unterkunftsverzeichnis herunterladen"
you get a zip file in German language. If you inspect it closeley I am sure you can decipher most of it.
There is a wide range list of accomodations along the camino even in small places.
Buen Camino
Jochen
 

johnBCCanada

Active Member
My experience in 2008 was that there were new places to stay showing up faster than they could get listed in the guidebooks. I am sure that will be the same this year.

john
 

tigerbiter

New Member
Hey fellow Canuk
I'll be walking the Camino in April.
I booked a flight through "Canadian Affairs" to London and booked a flight through Ryan Air to Bayonne France. From there I will be taking a bus to St Jean Pied du Port. I booked a return flight from Compestael back to London.
Where you from?
Neil
see url.
http://www.canadianaffair.ca/
 

johnBCCanada

Active Member
Hi

I am from Golden, BC. A small mountain town in Eastern British Columbia. I did a portion of the Camino France in teh Fall of 2008 and plan to do the Camino Primitivo linking it from Lugo to Ferrol with the Camino Inglise and walking that into Santiago this Fall.

Doesn't sound like we will meet on the Camino but I hope you have a very good trip!

Buen Camino

John
 

Tim-the-fat-Canadian

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
SJPP (2010); Leon (2012); Leon (2013);SJPP Sept 2018
Neil,

Which London airport are you flying into?

What are your exact dates?

Tim

p.s. I am from Niagara Falls.
 

vinotinto

Active Member
robert26 said:
How do I get to St. Jean Pied de Port from Canada?

Fly like an American eagle, baby! There are a couple of ways to get there depending on how you want to do it, as others have indicated in this thread. For example, you can fly into Paris and take trains/buses down to SJPP. Or if you fly into Madrid or another Spanish city, you can take trains/buses/cabs to SJPP. Check other forums on this site and the web for the latest travel info.

robert26 said:
Should I bring a sleeping bag?

Sure - a light one should do the trick, say a 30 degree synthetic travel bag (or whatever metric equivalent ya'll have up there). That worked for me in summer, but only you know how warm/cold you like to have the temp when you snooze, so check the temps for the months you'll be there and plan accordingly.

robert26 said:
Do the hostels have sheets and blankets and mattresses on the beds?

The real question is, "would I want to put my mouth on a sheet or blanket supplied by a hostel?" You rolls the dice and takes your chances, like the time I found a used ball of compeed on a sheet...ick. But most do have mattresses and cover sheets (you could pack one of those silk travel sheets along w/a sleeping bag, but that's more weight). If you covet a pillow, you can stuff one of your T-shirts with an article of clothing and use that if you aren't worried about drooling on it.

robert26 said:
Are there showers in the hostels?

You betcha, but the quality varies. I found that the private albergues (get into the nomenclature now, eh?) had the best ones, and the religious albergues...well, that was a Hail Mary. But you may have to wait awhile to get into one if you arrive late or things are hopping (see next question for the ramifications of that scenario).

robert26 said:
Hot water?

More often than not (but I wouldn't bet a looney on it). Hot water availability is also affected by when you arrive at said albergue. Get there early, have hot shower. Get there late, and it might be like running thru the Yukon in your birthday suit...

robert26 said:
Are towels supplied?

Only at the hotels. Otherwise, bring a travel towel that dries easily and packs small.

robert26 said:
Are there wild dogs or wolves on the Camino?

Wild Germans, yes (but only after a couple of beers). Wild dogs and wolves, not so much. I once thought I was being chased by three small dogs, but they ran right by me and were more focused on each other. Most other dogs looked bored at my passing. But carrying a walking stick will help you defend against any Canadian-hating pooches on the Way.

robert26 said:
If I arrive at a small town one evening and I am totally tired and exhausted and all hotels and hostels are full, what do I do?

Most albergues will find a place for a tired pilgrim. If you're worried about this, then make it a point to arrive at an albergue sometime in the early-to-mid afternoon (opening times vary, by the way). Crowds will be more of an issue as you get close to Santiago, where you'll be fighting with tourist-types and short-distance walkers for a bed. Worst case? Well, in my youth I visited a girl in Hong Kong, and one night I slept outside on a concrete platform surrounded by trees. I was sore and sniffly the next day, but young love will put up with anything...

robert26 said:
I need just a basic sheet of paper, or two, with everything listed.

Well, that sounds good on one sheet of paper, but not in real life. I recommend buying a guidebook, and swear by John Brierley's as a good one. As Rick Steves says, "guidebooks are a $20 investment for $3,000 experiences." Or something like that.

robert26 said:
I do not know how long it will take to get there so I can not really book a return flight in advance?

Well, I'd book a round-trip ticket and give yourself plenty of leeway. I took 40 days to do the trek from SJPP to Santiago, and that included extra fun/healing days spent in Logrono, Burgos, and Leon. Plus, I celebrated for a couple of days in Santiago before taking a bus back to Paris, where I hung out for three days until paying about 200 Euros to leave Europe 5 days early (I was homesick).

You can also do the open-jaw thing, where you, say, fly into one city and out another, such as into Paris and out of Madrid. That can save time and travel headaches.

Anyway, good luck with your preparations - they're half the fun! :mrgreen:

Buen Camino, :arrow:

VT
 

Tim-the-fat-Canadian

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
SJPP (2010); Leon (2012); Leon (2013);SJPP Sept 2018
Only two days left before I fly out.

Question - Is a bed cover to fght bedbugs essential, or it is a nice to have?

Tim
 
D

Deleted member 3000

Guest
Many refuges require that you have a sleeping bag/sack, so you will need one most places but not all places. Treat it with permethrin and you will keep out bedbugs. A bed cover may not work well. Treat the outside of your pack as well, and you will prevent bedbugs from hitchhiking with you. Other pilgrims will appreciate it, and you won't have to spray every place you stay. Hanging your pack from the bunk corner with a loop of rope minimizes the ability of bedbugs to join you. Store it on the floor, and you leave lots of access. Store it on a chair and you will aggravate those who would like to use the chair for sitting, say to put on boots.
 
Camino(s) past & future
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
Please do not just "do nothing" however. It's pilgrims who did nothing, or who said, "Oh well, there's nothing I can do..." who spread the little nasties from one end of the Camino to the other!!!

Hanging your pack is an excellent idea and will help keep the bugs out. Putting it on a chair is another good idea, and frankly, I didn't see many pilgrims using the chairs... most sit on their bunks.

If you get bedbugs, you'll wish you had listened, because you'll spend more time and energy than the cost of a bottle of mosquito spray or a rope to get rid of them.

If you don't have a bugsheet, then simply pick up a bottle of mosquito spray at the farmacia in Spain and spray the bed at each place. Hanging your pack MAY keep them out of the pack, unless the bed or wall is infested, in which case, they'll find their way in. Spraying the bed will let you see if the bed is infested and give you a choice of finding different lodgings.

Once you get bitten, you're infested. Easiest way to rid yourself is to get EVERYTHING dry cleaned. Cheaper is to spray, then wash EVERYTHING in hot soapy water. But it's not always as effective, because the bugs hide in places the spray can't reach, like the seams and pockets of your clothing and pack.

You may think "not a problem," but let me remind you....if you carry those critters home with you, you will not only infect your OWN family and your OWN home, it can be VERY expensive to treat your home mattresses.

Also, bear in mind, even if the bug bites don't bother you, you can be the one carrying them from place to place, which is not very nice.

To me, if you're not chemically sensitive (as I am) the best solution is one of those bedbug sheets or some spray.
 
Camino(s) past & future
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
Falcon, it is not true that it is non-toxic after it dries. If you come into contact with it, it can be very toxic.

When you use the pump spray of insecticide, the water molecules that are the carrier cause it to fall downward immediately. It doesn't linger in the air.

I don't suppose one is any less toxic than the other... but BOTH are toxic.

Unfortunately, in the case of bedbugs, I haven't found a better answer than insecticide except to move on to another location.
 
D

Deleted member 3000

Guest
I just do not like breathing the unknown toxins sprayed by other pilgrims in an albergue. I can spray the permethrin in the privacy of my garage before I leave. It is non-toxic to humans after it dries, but when applied to the outside of a sleeping bag, it does not have substantial skin contact regardless. If you want to prevent yourself from transporting bedbugs from albergue to albergue, you must keep them out of your equipment, and you cannot do that by a random spraying of occasional albergues. The pilgrim needs to be responsible for his behavior's effect on other pilgrims. Carrying bedbugs and spraying public accommodations is completely irresponsible.
 

Tim-the-fat-Canadian

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
SJPP (2010); Leon (2012); Leon (2013);SJPP Sept 2018
Urgent Help Needed (as I am flying out tomorow)

I am flying my return trip at the end of April, Santiago to London via RyanAir. RyanAir says that you have to print your boarding pass out in advance, 15 days to 4 hours, prior to flying. If you print it out at the airport, there is an extra 40 Euro charge!!!!

I will be on the Camino during this time. I know that there are places where you can get access to a computer, but is there anywhere that you can access a printer????

Tim
 
hi, im about to do the camino by bike and have a problem, im flying into bilbao airport and cannot find any transport which can accomidate myself and my bike as far as hendaye (irun) from hendaye all is good as the train links to st.jean are perfect! can anybody tell me anything about this??

Sent from my GT-S5570 using Camino de Santiago Forum mobile app
 

Advertisement

Booking.com

Latest posts

Similar threads

Camino Conversations

Camino Conversations

Forum Rules

Forum Rules

Forum Donation

Forum Donation
For those with no forum account, it is possible to donate here as well. Thank you for your support! Ivar

Follow Casa Ivar on Instagram

Most downloaded Resources

When is the best time to walk?

  • January

    Votes: 16 1.2%
  • February

    Votes: 10 0.8%
  • March

    Votes: 56 4.2%
  • April

    Votes: 200 15.2%
  • May

    Votes: 328 24.9%
  • June

    Votes: 95 7.2%
  • July

    Votes: 24 1.8%
  • August

    Votes: 27 2.0%
  • September

    Votes: 380 28.8%
  • October

    Votes: 158 12.0%
  • November

    Votes: 17 1.3%
  • December

    Votes: 7 0.5%

Camino Forum Store

Camino Forum Store
Top