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need advice -

#2
Welcome bblondie

Which route are you planning to walk? There is a considerable amount of information already in the forum and if you want to know anything just ask and members will respond.

Happy planning

John
 

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:
#3
Hello Bblondie,

To read about the history, the different routes, to buy guides and books on line.
http://www.csj.org.uk

To plan your trip, with a print out of daily mileage, sunrise and sunset, the profile and topography of the route:
http://www.godesalco.com/plan *

To work out your budget:
http://caminodesantiago.consumer.es/web/es/calculadora/

To find out about the weather, transport, maps, albergues etc.
http://groups.msn.com/ElCaminoSantiago

A Spanish site with lots of info in Spanish and English
http://www.mundicamino.com

To read pilgrims’ diaries and info on other routes:
http://www.caminolinks.co.uk

Forums and Groups: Pilgrim Chat sites:
http://www.groups.yahoo.com/group/Santiagobis
http://www.groups.yahoo.com/groups/Saintjames
http://www.pilgrimage-to-santiago.com/
gocamino-subscribe@oakapple.com

Camino Associations (English sites):
South Africa: CSJ of SA: http://www.csjofsa.za.org/index1.php
American Pilgrims on the Camino: http://www.americanpilgrims.com/
Canada: The Canadian Company of Pilgrims: http://www.santiago.ca/
England: Confraternity of St James: http://www.csj.org.uk
Ireland: The Irish Society of the Friends of St James: http://www.stjamesirl.com/


* How to use the http://www.godesalco.com/plan website to plan your daily schedule:

Once connected to the site click on English
Click on the route you are doing – Camino de Santiago for the Camino Frances
Click on the circle to the left of the town where you are starting, eg: Roncesvalles
Scroll down to the town where you will finish, Santiago, and click on the right circle.
You can write your name in the space provided, then click on SEND THIS FORM

In the new page, the mileage between each village and town will be displayed. Click on each place where you would like to stay. If you are planning on walking 20km per day, click on the town closest to the 20km distance displayed to the left of the town. Eg: Roncesvalles is ticked. Click on Zubiri – 21,8km will be displayed.
Then click on Pamplona and 20,5km will be displayed.
Continue choosing your overnight stops until you have reached Santiago.
Enter the dates of your pilgrimage in the space provided.
Click on SEND THIS FORM
The next window will offer you different documents to download with your daily schedule, profile of the route etc.
 
#6
bblondie. If you are walking the Via de la Plata a solo walk in August is quite an undertaking. The temperatures in Andalucia and the Extremadura are ultra high at that time of year.

Don't take any "short-cuts" and stick to the roads or the marked route. We cycled the VdlP in August and as long as you can get your walking done by lunch you are OK. It is still quite cool in the early morning.
 
#7
William

I plan to start the walk in the last week of August and plan to move early and be done before siesta time. I am a energetic wormcatcher.
 
#8
Ivar

Forgive me but what I meant was that Sil's post ( sorry to talk about you when you're not here Sil! )would be a great introduction for any new comer to any forum - may be we could have a posting in Introductions or a forum "If you are new" with these kinds of resources as well as the link to the excellent FAQ part of the CSJ website and some essential reading - or maybe just have it at the top of all forums?

Just an idea.

John
 
#9
We started the first four days of the Via de la Plata on June 7th (my boyfriend had a conference to go to so we arrived a few days early so that we could check out this camino). It was hot in June. We had temperatures of about 30 to 35 degrees C and were told that this was colder than usual. It is normally over 40 degrees C and will certainly be in this range in August. It starts to get hot around 10am and it lasts until about 8pm, which is why the locals don't have their evening meal until 9 or 10pm. This is also why they siesta from 1pm ish to about 5pm (i.e. everything is shut and for good reason, it is just too HOT). So, my top advice would be to bring a head torch and start walking before it actually gets light. Many of the stages are long and without water (or places to even buy water), so at the very least you will need a 2L camelbak. As most sane people won't have a go at this route at this time of year, I don't think that you will meet many people. As it was, we only met 6 other peregrinos in the middle of June. Most people do this route in the spring or fall. If you speak Spanish, an excellent guide book is La Via de La Plata a Pie y en Bicileta: Monumentos, Paisajes, Albergues, Etapas. The latest edition was published in 2008. The text was written by Paco Nadal, but on the front cover it says El Pais, Aguilar. El Pais is a major newspaper. The only problem that I have with this book is that it only describes the route that feeds into the Frances at Astorga (I want to go via Ourense). This is only a problem for me because I did Astorga to Santiago when I did the Camino Frances last year. However, if this is your first camino, this would be a good route to take as you would get a flavour of what the Frances is like. The Frances will have a lot more people on it, so crowding is an issue, but because of that it also has a lot more buzz to it. You will also meet a lot more people who speak English. Of the 6 other peregrinos we met, 1 was a first time peregrina (French) the others had all did the Frances and said that the Frances was a 'better' route if you wanted to have the 'camino experience'.
 
#10
peregrina nicole said:
... Of the 6 other peregrinos we met, 1 was a first time peregrina (French) the others had all did the Frances and said that the Frances was a 'better' route if you wanted to have the 'camino experience'.
Of all the caminos I have walked Mozarabe and Via de la Plata remains my favourite 'camino experience'. I suspect this is simply because it was my first camino, but it will still be remembered and valued far more greatly than Camino Frances. Not sure any of us actually look for a particular experience. We're all different and get very different values from camino. Personally, the long spells of solitude on Via de la Plata meant far more to me than the very socialble Frances. Not that I am not a very social person - I was just looking for a bit of 'space'.

----------

I started in the middle of September and conditions were just about perfect (give, or take a few very hot, or very wet days). A little to much road walking at times.

I wouldn't want to start walking in August. Andalucia and Extremadura are consistently hot from mid July until mid September. You can expect high 40's on many days. At altitude (much of Andalucia and Extremadura is high above sea level before you even start climbing the mountains) it is even more testing and water is not easy to find on some stretches.
 
#11
Dear all,
I am walking in April this year, I wasn't able to find a place in
1. Alcuéscar
also
2. Lindamar will be closed for the season.

3. Please advise on both locations where to stay and if possible does anyone know what time the train departs from the lakes/rivers area to Madrid?

Your advice will be immensely appreciated.
Muchas gracias,
Rema
 
#12
Hi, Rema,
In Alcuescar, there is an albergue that holds upwards of 100 people. It is located in a monastery that also provides a home and care to men with no families. Communal meal at night. There is a casa rural in the town, where you can get private accommodations, but if you search through this forum, you'll see that it gets bad reviews.

Right next to where the Lindamar was/is, there is a private albergue:
http://www.embalsedealcantara.com/ I haven't stayed here, but I have heard from others that it is nice. (The Lindamar was taken over by an Irish/British guy, and last year he had opened it as the Lake View -- I would not be surprised to hear that it had closed, though).

And I'm sorry but I don't really understand the third question. Buen camino, Rima. Laurie

p.s. you might get more responses if you posted your questions in a separate thread with a specific title that would let people know what you are looking for. Good luck.
 

Caminando

Veteran Member
#14
I wanted to do the VDP in July/ August. I was well and clearly told that it was ferociously hot at that time of year.

I, of course, knew better. So, beginning from Merida, I started before the sun rose each morning.

After 5 days, roasted and toasted, I gave up, admitted defeat and restarted from a less hot Salamanca.

Camino 1, me, 0.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Nearly every year since 2006, often walking more than one route. 2018 will be Camino #14.
#17
Hahah Caminando!
I'm right up there with you.
I lasted until Fuente de Cantos - then tossed in the towel.

This time I will begin in early May where I left off.
Hopefully, the weather will be more bearable!

We'll see how far I get!
If all else fails, I'll go walk another route, as I am in Spain until July.
But hopefully, I can tick this one off my list after this year.

Annie :lol: :lol: :lol:
 

grayland

Moderator
Staff member
Camino(s) past & future
Yes
#18
I am starting on 6 August...I guess I will be a night walker. Might finally get to use my headlamp. :?

I know it will be a test..but the others have been pretty easy.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino del Norte 2013
Camino Primitivo 2013
Camino Sanabrés from Zamora 2016
Camino del Norte 2018
#19
Hey Anniesantiago, I will be starting solo in early May as well. My plan is to begin in Irún. Will you be doing the Camino del Norte by chance? It would be lovely to meet some of the forum pilgrims along the way :)

Ultreïa!

Mary
 
Camino(s) past & future
Nearly every year since 2006, often walking more than one route. 2018 will be Camino #14.
#20
Hi Mary! I walked on the VDLP as far as Caceras and stopped again!
This year, I'm hoping to pick up another stretch of the VDLP, probably between Salamanca and Santiago.
I have walked some of the Norte, but haven't finished it. It's on my list - I tend to do each route in stages.
 
#21
I start walking from Seville at the end of May - have just downloaded Melanie's app. Excited and nervous at the same time at this stage! A little concerned about the fact that on one of the first stages (comments posted on her app by others) there is mention of two men, wearing belaclavas, appearing out of nowhere and robbing peregrinos. I am definitely not paranoid but am realistic at the same time - hope there will be enough people walking when I'm there to join me on the sections where people have had these experiences! I've walked the Frances route twice, so I am pretty savvy but wouldn't want to be thinking about this stuff all the time!
 

Oztrekker

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
I started in st jean and am currently in leon. My foot is blistered after my boots wore out.

Have completed many long distance treks longest is 1000 km, bibulmun track.
#22
I think the way I went is good, i did no planing, just showed up at st jean pied de port with 3 months up my sleeve and left it up to god.

I purchased John Brierly's book, a camino badge that was sewn onto my backpack and strolled off toward santiago the next day.

I would recommend taking it slow the first few days. Which is the advice you are told in st jean. However people did not listen and I had to first aid a number of injuries, girl with a knee, and another with an ankle.

No itinerary, no stress just enjoy. The wine in the first few weeks is sublime.
 

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