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Montserrant to San Juan de la Pena.

Camino(s) past & future
French route (04,05,06) Portugues (07) VDLP (09,10,11) Aragon (0413) Levante (16) French (18)
Has anyone walked the stretch of Camino beginning in Montserrant towards Huesca and on to the Aragonese camino at Saint Cilla and San Juan de la Pena? I've found some info from 8/10 years ago but I'm looking for any updates about Albergues, distances and how many days it might take. I'm thinking maybe 12 to 14 days but I'm just guessing. Any details would be helpful. My wife and I will be starting the 4th of June from Montserrat. I have no idea how populated this route may be.
 
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
Jeff-- if you look through the threads on this part of the forum (https://www.caminodesantiago.me/community/forums/cami-catalan-cami-st-jaume.105/ ) pretty well all of your questions will be answered, and there is a fair bit of input by those who have done this splendid route in the past two years (myself included).

The route goes through a mix of small towns and farmland, but you will find very few pilgrims on it. I have done this route three times and have only met 2 Austrian priests on bicycles the first time, and two Australians last year. As well, I did meet a dozen Californians doing the Ignatian route, which crosses the Cami-- but will you not find many other pilgrims. As well, here (https://www.csj.org.uk/catalan-caminos/ ) is a concise document from the Confraternity website, which may be of help.
 

lindam

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances, Via de La Plata, Portuguese, Camino Ingles, Fisterra, Muxia, Catalan and Aragones, Norte
I am currently walking this route for the second time. If you look in the Catalan Camino sub-forum, I wrote a review of our experience last spring.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Aragon/Frances 08, Arles 10, Le Puy 12, Geneva 14, VdlP 15, Norte/Primitivo 15, VF 17, Levante 18,
Has anyone walked the stretch of Camino beginning in Montserrant towards Huesca and on to the Aragonese camino at Saint Cilla and San Juan de la Pena? I've found some info from 8/10 years ago but I'm looking for any updates about Albergues, distances and how many days it might take. I'm thinking maybe 12 to 14 days but I'm just guessing. Any details would be helpful. My wife and I will be starting the 4th of June from Montserrat. I have no idea how populated this route may be.
I just walked Llansá to Montserrat to Santa Cilia and on to Arrés. The Eroski app information on albergues from Montserrat to Santa Cilia was accurate. I always called ahead one day to make certain the albergue was open and to understand how to get the key.

The 3 page printout of towns/services/albergues available online from the Barcelona Friends of the Camino was very useful and everyone I met had a copy.

The albergue in Monzón I was told was closed on sundays, but later ran into 2 pilgrims who stayed there that Sunday. They had had to communicate by email and send passport photo by email to make their arrangements there. So Monzón may be a bit unusual.

I walked Montserrat to Santa Celia in 11 days. Two days were long.

I met 5 pilgrims , one going “backwatds” as he was doing the Ignacio pilgrimage, but there was no one ahead of me for a few days, so I could just as easily have met fewer. I counted 230 names in one of the albergue registries for all of 2018.

It is just a lovely route, for folks who don’t mind the possibility of solitude.
 
Camino(s) past & future
French route (04,05,06) Portugues (07) VDLP (09,10,11) Aragon (0413) Levante (16) French (18)
I just walked Llansá to Montserrat to Santa Cilia and on to Arrés. The Eroski app information on albergues from Montserrat to Santa Cilia was accurate. I always called ahead one day to make certain the albergue was open and to understand how to get the key.

The 3 page printout of towns/services/albergues available online from the Barcelona Friends of the Camino was very useful and everyone I met had a copy.

The albergue in Monzón I was told was closed on sundays, but later ran into 2 pilgrims who stayed there that Sunday. They had had to communicate by email and send passport photo by email to make their arrangements there. So Monzón may be a bit unusual.

I walked Montserrat to Santa Celia in 11 days. Two days were long.

I met 5 pilgrims , one going “backwatds” as he was doing the Ignacio pilgrimage, but there was no one ahead of me for a few days, so I could just as easily have met fewer. I counted 230 names in one of the albergue registries for all of 2018.

It is just a lovely route, for folks who don’t mind the possibility of solitude.
Thanks for the info, very helpful. We will be walking in June so my best guess is that it will be hot. Someone told me to arrive early in Montserrat to get the key to the Albergue from the monks before they close in the afternoon. Can you shed any light about staying there and will I need to contact them before I arrive for staying at the Albergue? We will be taking public transportation from Mansesa that morning.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Aragon/Frances 08, Arles 10, Le Puy 12, Geneva 14, VdlP 15, Norte/Primitivo 15, VF 17, Levante 18,
Thanks for the info, very helpful. We will be walking in June so my best guess is that it will be hot. Someone told me to arrive early in Montserrat to get the key to the Albergue from the monks before they close in the afternoon. Can you shed any light about staying there and will I need to contact them before I arrive for staying at the Albergue? We will be taking public transportation from Mansesa that morning.

9:30-1 and 4-6 per their website. I emailed them the night before, but other pilgrims arrived without notification. I they they prefer a call or email the day prior. I have heard that subsequent to my night there, they have opened a new spot for pilgrim accommodation.
 

hansking

Member
Camino(s) past & future
(2013) Camino Frances
(2016) Portuguese
(2018) Barcelona to Santiago
Hi Jeff

My partner Bridget and I cycled from Barcelona via Pamplona to Santiago in May last year. Although we were cycling and the distances we covered would be different to yours, we had some really super experiences in terms of places to stay. We kept a journal on Wordpress which you can visit - https://cyclingtillwedrop.wordpress.com/

Have a super walk
With best
Hans he.king@telkomsa.net
 

Vacajoe

Traded in my work boots for hiking ones
Camino(s) past & future
2019 Biarritz-Pamplona-Lourdes
2018 Aragon/Frances/Finis
2018 Operation Sabre
2018 Marin Ramble
Jeff! Sacramento Robert here!!! Forget Spain and come enjoy the glorious southern coast of France in Biarritz!!!!! You can fake the blog and pictures... 😎

When we stayed in Montserrat last April, we had to check in with the parish office before closing time (3pm? 4pm? It’s on their website...) and they walked us over to the albuergue as there were no hospitaleros so early in the season. At the time I could find no email so we just showed up, but since your Spanish is good you should be able to call them. Just be sure you reach the parish office and not the hotel or apartments there.

Finally, we ate at the expensive restaurant there but were provided with the pilgrims’ meal, so it was delicious food at a very reasonable cost.
 

lindam

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances, Via de La Plata, Portuguese, Camino Ingles, Fisterra, Muxia, Catalan and Aragones, Norte
By the way, when we were there about three weeks ago, they were in the final stages of building a very modern-looking new facility for pilgrims. It is expected to open in about a month from now.
 

martini

Pilgrim
Camino(s) past & future
portugal way, french way, muxia way- past
Aragones way, catalan way, piamonte way- future
Jeff! Sacramento Robert here!!! Forget Spain and come enjoy the glorious southern coast of France in Biarritz!!!!! You can fake the blog and pictures... 😎

When we stayed in Montserrat last April, we had to check in with the parish office before closing time (3pm? 4pm? It’s on their website...) and they walked us over to the albuergue as there were no hospitaleros so early in the season. At the time I could find no email so we just showed up, but since your Spanish is good you should be able to call them. Just be sure you reach the parish office and not the hotel or apartments there.

Finally, we ate at the expensive restaurant there but were provided with the pilgrims’ meal, so it was delicious food at a very reasonable cost.
Hi, Vacajoe!
Don't remember the name of restaurant?
 

Vacajoe

Traded in my work boots for hiking ones
Camino(s) past & future
2019 Biarritz-Pamplona-Lourdes
2018 Aragon/Frances/Finis
2018 Operation Sabre
2018 Marin Ramble
Don’t remember the name because It’s the ONLY restaurant in Montserrat! 😂. There’s also a cafeteria open during the tourist season (closed durin our visit) and a tiny store selling some basic food items.
 

Pilger99

Member
Camino(s) past & future
addicted since 1999 (Aragones, CF), lots of caminos in Spain and Portugal since then
The restaurant of Hotel Abat Cisneros is close to the albergue and opens any day the hotel is open (don't know if they close some days in Winter)
Dinner 27,50€. Not bad for a former horse stable :cool:. pilgrims menu will be less.

Tourist restaurants should be open from easter to October, but only on weekends you can eat something in the early evening (till 20:00h), Prices are still high, so as a pilgrim the Hotel should be the best choice.
https://www.montserratvisita.com/en/organize-the-visit/where-to-eat

About solitude. Aparently Catalunya makes spanish speakers feel a bit more lonely than other provinces. Even some villages in Aragón mainly speak catalá. Maybe that's compensated with a bit more English, but don't expect much difference.
 

martini

Pilgrim
Camino(s) past & future
portugal way, french way, muxia way- past
Aragones way, catalan way, piamonte way- future
The restaurant of Hotel Abat Cisneros is close to the albergue and opens any day the hotel is open (don't know if they close some days in Winter)
Dinner 27,50€. Not bad for a former horse stable :cool:. pilgrims menu will be less.

Tourist restaurants should be open from easter to October, but only on weekends you can eat something in the early evening (till 20:00h), Prices are still high, so as a pilgrim the Hotel should be the best choice.
https://www.montserratvisita.com/en/organize-the-visit/where-to-eat

About solitude. Aparently Catalunya makes spanish speakers feel a bit more lonely than other provinces. Even some villages in Aragón mainly speak catalá. Maybe that's compensated with a bit more English, but don't expect much difference.
Thank you!
 
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
The restaurant of Hotel Abat Cisneros is close to the albergue and opens any day the hotel is open (don't know if they close some days in Winter)
Dinner 27,50€. Not bad for a former horse stable :cool:. pilgrims menu will be less.

Tourist restaurants should be open from easter to October, but only on weekends you can eat something in the early evening (till 20:00h), Prices are still high, so as a pilgrim the Hotel should be the best choice.
https://www.montserratvisita.com/en/organize-the-visit/where-to-eat

About solitude. Aparently Catalunya makes spanish speakers feel a bit more lonely than other provinces. Even some villages in Aragón mainly speak catalá. Maybe that's compensated with a bit more English, but don't expect much difference.
My own experience was to speak halting castellano (in my best John Wayne accent) and to always apologize for my incapacity, mi castellano es terrible, y mi catalan mas terrible que mi castellano, which seemed to amuse people. Catalans are warm and hospitable people, and any issues which they might have with the folks in Madrid are not visited upon pilgrims.
 

Pilger99

Member
Camino(s) past & future
addicted since 1999 (Aragones, CF), lots of caminos in Spain and Portugal since then
Catalans are warm and hospitable people, and any issues which they might have with the folks in Madrid are not visited upon pilgrims.
I did not try to say something in this sense. Some of my best camino friends are catalan, but I'm still not able to talk that language.
What I wanted to say: while I walked alone in Catalunya i sensed the language barrier often enough, while it was totally different with the locals if I had company from someone speaking catalan or speaking castellano in other provinces. If you speak "John Wayne"-ish ;) you'll probably not notice that.
 
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 did not try to say something in this sense. Some of my best camino friends are catalan, but I'm still not able to talk that language.
What I wanted to say: while I walked alone in Catalunya i sensed the language barrier often enough, while it was totally different with the locals if I had company from someone speaking catalan or speaking castellano in other provinces. If you speak "John Wayne"-ish ;) you'll probably not notice that.
I'm sorry I was not clear. I was not trying to put words in your mouth, but rather to assure prospective pilgrims passing through this lovely place that anything going on politically will not have an effect on the traditional hospitality of the Catalan people. I will stick with my John-Wayne pronunciation for, while I can do much better, my painful-to-their-ears speech ensures that nobody will reply too quickly for me to understand. I sometimes think that, should I visit Catalonia for any lengthy period, I will likely sign up for classes in this very interesting language.
 

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