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Mobile Reception and Internet Cafes?

Hi,

New here. I'm setting off from Granada in 10 days time.

I'm an artist and photographer who intends to blog daily (if possible) as I go. I'll be trying to pay my way by selling sketches in each town and city I pass through. Whilst I appreciate that modern technology may intrude a little, it is essential for me.

I'm expecting the route from Granada to Merida to be a bit remote in stages. Can anyone tell me where I'll find internet cafes outside of major towns? And, where I'm likely to find mobile reception at it's weakest, or non-existent?

I'll be spending this evening reading this forum and hopefully gathering some useful information.

Anyone interested can track my progress at http://www.thelostphotographer.blogspot.com

I'm going to be taking the route very slowly. I need at least Three hours each day to sketch and sell as well as walk. From Santiago I'll be continuing along the main route in the wrong direction before heading to Barcelona and then along the coast and back home to Granada. 18 months I reckon with big, long visits to friends as I go!

Thanks in advance for any help.

TLP
 
Camino(s) past & future
2002, Toulouse/Aragon 2005, Cami S Jaume/Aragon 2007/9, Mont Saint Michel/Norte/Vadiniense 2011, Norte/Primitivo 2013, Norte/Primitivo 2014. Norte 2015, Cami S Jaume/Castellano-Aragonese 2016
I don`t know this region, but have walked the Camino out of Montserrat through some fairly obscure Catalan and Aragonese centres. On that basis, I would suggest that you keep your eyes open for "locutorios," which are the telephone parlours used by migrant agricultural workers to keep in touch with their folks back home. Many of them featured internet points. As well, computer terminals can be found in some bars. Your hospitalero, pension/hostal receptionist or bartender can guide you. Occasionally, local teenagers will know where gaming parlours are-- these are not casinos, but joints where banks of computer terminals resound with explosions and car-crashes, while excited adolescents shriek in horror as Martians explode on the screen.
 
oursonpolaire said:
I don`t know this region, but have walked the Camino out of Montserrat through some fairly obscure Catalan and Aragonese centres...

Hi, thanks for this.

I've been using the web coverage guides for Movistar and Vodafone etc, but don't trust them. I'm not going to rush this journey and may well even camp in the middle of nowhere for a few days between hikes if the fancy takes me. I'm lucky that I have no time constraints, but I will need to make money for food. Not bothered about beds. I can make a safe bed anywhere. Admit I'll be seeking refuge during January and February!

Pretty sure I could find public internet access in any town with a population above 2,000. More interested in knowing if I could use Treo, or similar in remote wilderness.

I've lived in Spain for Three years plus now. Fairly familiar with major cities everywhere and Andalucia, but really want this journey to reveal the culture of the rest of Spain. Not expecting it to be easy - just looking for a tranquil adventure with a few moments of excitement.

I guess, in short; does anyone know if there are any stretches from Granada to Santiago where I'll lose mobile reception altogether?
 

gyro

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Caminos: Frances, Ingles, Portugues, de Norte
Via(s): de la Plata, Mozarabe
TheLostPhotographer said:
Pretty sure I could find public internet access in any town with a population above 2,000. More interested in knowing if I could use Treo, or similar in remote wilderness.

I've lived in Spain for Three years plus now. Fairly familiar with major cities everywhere and Andalucia, but really want this journey to reveal the culture of the rest of Spain. Not expecting it to be easy - just looking for a tranquil adventure with a few moments of excitement.

I guess, in short; does anyone know if there are any stretches from Granada to Santiago where I'll lose mobile reception altogether?

Dear Lostphotographer,
I walked from Sevilla to Salamanca in 2006, the Salamanca to SdeC in 2007. From memory, the route from Granada joins the Via de la Plata at Merida. Is that right?

I found no trouble in getting mobile reception between Merida and Salamanca. The most "remote" section -around Bejar - was a bit patchy, but nothing to fret over.
Between Salamanca and SdeC, there were no problems for the vast majority of the route. The section over the mountain passes between Castille-Leon and Galicia again had slightly patchy coverage. For some reason I had some trouble getting a signal in Lubian.

I don't think you will suffer any major inconvenience.
Buen Camino
Gyro
 

Rebekah Scott

Camino Busybody
Camino(s) past & future
Many, various, and continuing.
Out on the perimeter phoning home can become quite mystical.

A lot depends on your carrier. Mobile coverage is very patchy all over the backwaters of Spain. Out where I live, we have fine cobertura from Orange and Movistar, but our Vodafone mobiles have to be used out in the patio or the street in order to get a signal. We had similar experiences in southern Salamanca, between Bejar and Salamanca city, and in the mountains near Guadalupe.. no coverage, unless you walked around a bit and stood facing the wind during the waxing moon! Don´t expect any locutorios between Caceres and Salamanca, nor anywhere between Zamora and Ourense...they are mostly large-city phenomena.

Stop in and visit when you come by Moratinos.
Reb.
 
Rebekah Scott said:
...

Stop in and visit when you come by Moratinos.
Reb.

Very nice. Thanks both for the feedback. Looks like I'll be signing up with Movistar (much to my regret). All reports suggest they're the most reliable as well as being the most expensive. Keep an eye on my blog for when I'm in the Moratinos area and I'll call by with a fine bottle of Rioja special reserve.

I managed to trip over carrying boxes into storage yesterday. Nothing more than cuts and bruises thankfully, but not the best of starts. No doubt I can expect a bit worse during the coming 18 months :D

TLP.
 
I think operators like http://www.yoigo.es uses the Movistar network (=same coverage as Movistar) but they are MUCH more economical. I have used them for over one year and they are reliable.

Just a thought.

Saludos,
Ivar

Thanks again. I've seen ad's for Yoigo. Any money saving ideas are more than worth the 10 minute contract reading. I'll check it out this evening.

This is proving to be a very useful forum. Hopefully I'll be able to give some good information back along my route.

TLP
 

evanlow

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances06
Primitivo07
Plata08
Norte12
Levante(14-15)
Vasco16
Mozarabe(16-17)
Madrid17
Portuguese18
Hi TLP,

I second Dawn on using the library. I walked the via de la Plata this May and had blog almost every day along the way mainly by using free internet at the municipal libraries.

All I carried was the Nokia e61i. Most of the libraries has free wlan. For those without it the alternative is to have a USB reader for the phone memory card so I can still post pictures up the blog.

http://camino.wificat.com
 
Absolutely no problem with mobile reception encountered yet. I'm spending a fortune on texts and love emergencies!

I've just reached Plasencia and it's chucking it down, so I'm taking a couple of rest days and doing museums and galleries and stuff before taking an 80KM excursion to a small town that people keep telling me I should visit to sketch and paint.

Libraries are useful, but not available everyday unless I cheat and take a bus. I have done that a couple of times already.

Really enjoying myself. Some great experiences and great people. But, I'm afraid my pilgrimage is doing nothing to eleviate my scepticism about religion. Quite the opposite in fact, although I am enjoying visiting cathedrals and churches etc.
 

gyro

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Caminos: Frances, Ingles, Portugues, de Norte
Via(s): de la Plata, Mozarabe
Things to do in Plascencia when you're bored.

I found myself in Plascencia a few years ago. A small but interesting town.
If you have the 15euros to burn, go for a coffee or chocolate at the new Parador. Quite the most relaxing and pleasant of experiences.....

and kind regards
Gyro
 

evanlow

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances06
Primitivo07
Plata08
Norte12
Levante(14-15)
Vasco16
Mozarabe(16-17)
Madrid17
Portuguese18
Hmmm,

Beginning to regret not taking a detour to Plascencia on my Camino via de la Plata.
 
evanlow said:
Hmmm,

Beginning to regret not taking a detour to Plascencia on my Camino via de la Plata.

Really enjoyed Plasencia. Very liveable place and very interesting. Very good and friendly people. Not over polished. And, I got treated to a night at the Parador. Fond memories. I'm back in the hills heading towards Salamanca now. Taking it very slowly.
 

gyro

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Caminos: Frances, Ingles, Portugues, de Norte
Via(s): de la Plata, Mozarabe
TheLostPhotographer said:
evanlow said:
Hmmm,

Beginning to regret not taking a detour to Plascencia on my Camino via de la Plata.

Really enjoyed Plasencia. Very liveable place and very interesting. Very good and friendly people. Not over polished. And, I got treated to a night at the Parador. Fond memories. I'm back in the hills heading towards Salamanca now. Taking it very slowly.

Slow's good on that section of the Camino: Salamanca will seem a long way away. Come to it at your own pace, there is no rush.....
Gyro
 
gyro said:
Slow's good on that section...there is no rush.....
Gyro


There was a rush. I was running out of cash, but managed to make it. Staying in Salamanca for a few days to recover physically and financially. It's a bit wet and cold here currently.

Anyone needing a Spanish SIM for use on their walk may do well to pop into Carrefour. Very good national rates for a prepay/no contract. And, only 40 Cents/minute to call anywhere in Europe (UK included).
 

gyro

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Caminos: Frances, Ingles, Portugues, de Norte
Via(s): de la Plata, Mozarabe
TheLostPhotographer said:
gyro said:
Slow's good on that section...there is no rush.....
Gyro
There was a rush. I was running out of cash, but managed to make it. Staying in Salamanca for a few days to recover physically and financially. It's a bit wet and cold here currently.

Dear LP,
Enjoy your rest. If you get a chance, the Museum of Modern Art (is that right?) has a fabulous Art Deco collection- a refreshing change from all the dark, brooding, 17th century Spanish Art.

And build up your strength. I remember the stages between Salamanca and Zamora as being pretty demanding. The maximum security prison is one of the more interesting sights.

God speed
Gyro
 
gyro said:
Dear LP,
Enjoy your rest. If you get a chance, the Museum of Modern Art (is that right?) ...
Gyro

That will be The Museum of Art Nouveau. Still very cold, wet and windy here. Plenty of indoor stuff to do and free internet in the library (keeping thread on track).
 

Aldernath

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
VdlP 2009, Le Puy & Norte 2011, Arles 2013, VF 2015, Kumano Kodo 2016
Does anyone know of a prepaid Spanish SIM card that comes with a data allowance? And where it can be purchased in Seville? I'd like to buy one at the start of my VdlP. I'll use public libraries or internet cafés when available, but that won't be every day, I'm sure.
 

Javier Martin

Veteran Member
Aldernath said:
Does anyone know of a prepaid Spanish SIM card that comes with a data allowance? And where it can be purchased in Seville? I'd like to buy one at the start of my VdlP. I'll use public libraries or internet cafés when available, but that won't be every day, I'm sure.

Most prepaid SIM cards in Spain comes with some euros available for calls, I suppose for data too. Ask in Seville when you arrive.

I suppose that if you want to call to Australia calls may be cheaper if you buy Vodafone, because the roaming agreements with Vodafone in Australia.

Buen Camino,

Javier Martin
Madrid, Spain.
 

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