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Newbie Questions

Re-tired

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances
The wife and I are in the process of planning our first Camino walk. We've been to Spain a few times and love the country but have never walked a Camino. Our current plan is to buy round-trip airfare to Madrid with around 88 or 89 days between arrival and departure to make sure we don't go over the 90 day Schengen Zone limit. Arriving in September and departing in December. To get the most varied Camino experience we are contemplating beginning our walk in Somport and doing the Aragones walk, connecting to the Frances, and then breaking off and doing the Invierno into Santiago. We are retired but both in excellent shape (gym rats) and have no concerns about the distance. So, that preliminary plan in mind, a few questions:

1. What's a ballpark number of days to do this walk at a relaxed pace. It seems from looking at maps that the distance should be roughly the same as walking the entire Frances. Our hope is that we will have plenty of time after completing this walk, including a few days rest here and there, to do some more sightseeing in other parts of Spain or Portugal.

2. Assuming we have enough time after reaching Santiago to go touring around the country for a few weeks, we would like to send some extra clothes to Santiago when we start out to use after our walk. I'm not finding a link on the forum site for the service to have our stuff held in Santiago. Would we send a bag via the post office from Madrid, and who would we send it to?

3. We don't see a guide available for purchase in the forum store for the Aragones. Where should we look for one, or is there an app that would suffice?

Thanks in advance.
 

AndrewDavOz

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 2019
Hi Re-tired.
Rather others than looking up the address and posting it here, it’s better for you to get some practice with the search facility on the forum. At the top of any forum page in the menu bar there is a Search Button. You could search for baggage forwarding or baggage holding. There will be dozens of hits so looking at those will reveal lots of other useful info. You might find the Correos service useful at times - they also hold luggage for you. But there is a time limit. Looking up that on the Correos website should give you current and actual information.

For your fitness level it is likely you will walk further than I would, while still feeling relaxed. That may be 15km, 20km or 30 km for you. From your training routine you will know what distance Is comfortable.

I don’t think there is any substitute for listing out the towns you expect to go through, with the distances between them, and deciding for yourself whether to go from A to B or A to C, etc.

Or you could just walk and see where you get to, stop where you feel like it and enjoy being unplanned. Whatever you decide, enjoy the experience.

Andrew
 

Re-tired

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances
Thank you Andrew. By the way, I like your travel blog...

In regards to using the search function:
Yes. I did exactly that. I searched for "Luggage Transfer" and "Baggage Transfer". Lot's of generalities after reading through a few of the threads. Most of the ones I read through were addressing sending luggage between towns. Not what I'm looking for. Our luggage will likely need to be held for us in Santiago for 55+ days, so Correos holding it doesn't seem a viable option for storage but I suppose we may need to use it to get the luggage to Santiago. When I say luggage, what I really mean is a smallish duffel bag with clothes in it. I did come across some notes that someone named Ivar would hold luggage in Santiago and that one only needs to click on the link near the top of the forum site, but I find no such link anywhere on the site. I'm sure I'm just not looking in the right place. Perhaps someone who has actually used this service can chime in?

I should have been more clear on the guide issue. I'm looking specifically for places to stay and contact information, available services in various towns, etc. We don't want to be spreadsheet pilgrims but a basic guide seems pretty useful.

We won't be pushing the pace at all. More a leisurely stroll. We are curious to hear from some people who have actually walked the Aragones/Frances route about a "ballpark" estimate of days to walk it. Maybe give or take a week?
 

Stephan the Painter

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances(2020)
Here’s a website which will give you information on where to send your luggage in Santiago. I think this is just what you want, a moderate fee to store it for a couple months. this is Ivar, and I believe this is the same person who runs this website:
 
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AndrewDavOz

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 2019
Hi again, you are right, using the words “baggage transfer” just brings up lots about daily transfers between albergues. ”holding” brings up more useful links.

Ivar is the site owner here, he runs a baggage holding service and also has a range of goodies like maps and books, which can be purchased online.

Prior to my camino, I compiled a note of all the useful hints I read here, it was on my ipad when I compiled it but using icloud it was also available on my phone while on the camino. Looking back at that just now, the note has this about the luggage holding service he provides:

Sending luggage to Ivar in Santiago

http://www.casaivar.com/luggage-storage-in-santiago-de-compostela/

I just checked that link, it is still correct. When I reached SDC I went to collect my luggage and met Ivar and had a short chat. The entire process went very well.

Good luck with your trip.
 

Marc S.

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Since 2012: CF, CdN, CP, Salvador, Aragones, Via Regia, Elisabethpfad, Jakobsweg NRW, Jakibspaad.
I will try to be help as far as the Aragones is concerned (I have never walked the Invierno).

I actually do not know of an English guidebook for the Aragones. I do know the German Rother guidebook on the Frances also has info the Aragones stages. However I can imagine you do not speak German....

Your best bet is to check out this website: https://www.gronze.com/camino-aragones
It is in Spanish, but it is easy to figure out where the albergues (and other accomodations) are. If I remember well the tourist information office in Jaca also had some information on this camino (so once your are there, you may want to check this out).

My stages on the Aragones were: Somport - Villanua - Jaca - Arres - Artieda - Sanguesa - Monreal - Puenta la Reina. So this makes seven days, which is an average pace I guess. Other pilgrims I walked with also walked in seven days, most of them staying in Ruesta instead of Artieda.

I really enjoyed walking the Aragones, it is a miracle to me why there are not more people walking it. So,
happy planning and buen camino !
 

Re-tired

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances
Hi again, you are right, using the words “baggage transfer” just brings up lots about daily transfers between albergues. ”holding” brings up more useful links.

Ivar is the site owner here, he runs a baggage holding service and also has a range of goodies like maps and books, which can be purchased online.

Prior to my camino, I compiled a note of all the useful hints I read here, it was on my ipad when I compiled it but using icloud it was also available on my phone while on the camino. Looking back at that just now, the note has this about the luggage holding service he provides:

Sending luggage to Ivar in Santiago

http://www.casaivar.com/luggage-storage-in-santiago-de-compostela/

I just checked that link, it is still correct. When I reached SDC I went to collect my luggage and met Ivar and had a short chat. The entire process went very well.

Good luck with your trip.
Thanks Andrew. Just perfect.
 

Re-tired

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances
I will try to be help as far as the Aragones is concerned (I have never walked the Invierno).

I actually do not know of an English guidebook for the Aragones. I do know the German Rother guidebook on the Frances also has info the Aragones stages. However I can imagine you do not speak German....

Your best bet is to check out this website: https://www.gronze.com/camino-aragones
It is in Spanish, but it is easy to figure out where the albergues (and other accomodations) are. If I remember well the tourist information office in Jaca also had some information on this camino (so once your are there, you may want to check this out).

My stages on the Aragones were: Somport - Villanua - Jaca - Arres - Artieda - Sanguesa - Monreal - Puenta la Reina. So this makes seven days, which is an average pace I guess. Other pilgrims I walked with also walked in seven days, most of them staying in Ruesta instead of Artieda.

I really enjoyed walking the Aragones, it is a miracle to me why there are not more people walking it. So,
happy planning and buen camino !
The Aragones seems an opportunity for one of these app developers, but then It might not be as idyllic any longer. Hopefully we pass through before the wave...:)
 

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
Buen Camino app and Gronze.com have all the info you need (if you use google chrome as your browser, it will translate Gronze into English). There’s very little choice of places to stay — basically one allergies in each location — so no need for a “real” guidebook. Most of the villages you pass through are tiny, so finding the on lodging location in each is very easy. The trail is well-marked, too, so you do not need a map either.

I highly recommend staying in Arres, a tiny and crowded albergue, but a very special experience. Additionally, taking the detours to the monasteries of San Juan de la Pena and Leyre Is worth the time but staying at each location can be somewhat expensive.

The Aragones is by far my favorite route and I hope you enjoy it as much as I did 2018, 2019).
 

martin1ws

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Somport to Finisterre Jul-Aug 2018; Munich to Lindau (Germany) Sep 2020
...
1. What's a ballpark number of days to do this walk at a relaxed pace. It seems from looking at maps that the distance should be roughly the same as walking the entire Frances. Our hope is that we will have plenty of time after completing this walk, including a few days rest here and there, to do some more sightseeing in other parts of Spain or Portugal.
...
I went from Somport and did the Camino Aragones, then parts of the Camino Frances and then the Camino de Invierno and was on day 37 in Santiago:
How many days? It depends... between 30 and 60 days. So if you want to have a number... maybe 42 days of walking. But I think it is very important that you can go as far as you want each day... probably even more important if you are not walking alone.

I used the all Spanish Caminos gpx files and openstreetmap.
Resources:
(in very few cases the track is not up-to-date... this happened to me on the last day before Santiago de Compostela. But you would find your way without gps as well)
gronze.com and the links in this thread offer additional information... or a internet search for something like "camino de santiago app aragones"... but if you start now with planning you will probably have more information (and apps) in September than you really need.

I want to go on to Fisterra again after my next Camino:

I think these are 5 important notes:
* well-fitting shoes (there are many threads about shoes in this forum)
* pack light
* go (only) as far as you want each day... (not as far as you may have planned)
* go only as fast as you want this day
* a little bit of Spanish is helpful on the lonelier caminos like Camino Aragones and Camino de Invierno

Buen Camino!
 
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Doogman

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
?
The Miam Miam Dodo guide for the Chemin d’Arles (GR 653) covers the Camino Aragones as well. It is in French, but it is very intuitive and easy to use. It lists accommodation and facilities along the way.
 

ranthr

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
C Frances 2005, 2007
Le Puy en Velay -SdC 2009
Via de la Plata 2011
gr 653 from Oloron to Puente la Reina 2012
Gr65 from le Puy to Figeac 2013
Irun to Santander 2013
Porto to SdC 2014
Astorga to SdC 2015
Be aware that there is no postoffice in Somport, only an albergue, if you want to send your things to Ivar.
You will have to do that before you take the bus up to Somport.
The road/path up to Somport from Oloron St. Marie is a very nice 4 days walk as well, and you seem to have a lot of time.🙂
 

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
I second the suggestion to walk up from Marie-St-Oloron! Stunning! What months are you walking, though? That really can change this route (snow vs searing sun!)

With side-trips, rest days, and walking an average of 20-25km a day, we did it in 40 days
 

O Peracha

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Le Puy to Santiago (2014)
Annapurna Base, Nepal (2014)
GR 5 - Holland to Pompey, France (2015)
Lisbon to Finesterre (2016)
I did Toulouse to Santiago this year. I didn't follow your route exactly but here are my days per section.

Toulouse to Somport via Lourdes (Arles/Piemont): 13 days
Somport to Puente la Reina (Aragones): 7
Puente la Reina to Leon (Frances): 14
Leon to Oviedo (Salvador): 5
Oviedo to Santiago (Primitivo): 11

Slow pace with the exception of Salvador which was just right. If I were to do this again, I'd definitely cut 2-3 days from Frances.

I brought along an old Miam Miam Dodo that covered Aurelia, Tolosona and Aragones but didn't really use and ended up tossing. Instead I relied on GPS tracks that I had downloaded and Gronze which was enough for me.

There are instructions on here to forward stuff to Ivar. I used it one year and it worked perfectly.
 
Last edited:

Re-tired

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances
Be aware that there is no postoffice in Somport, only an albergue, if you want to send your things to Ivar.
You will have to do that before you take the bus up to Somport.
The road/path up to Somport from Oloron St. Marie is a very nice 4 days walk as well, and you seem to have a lot of time.🙂
Good point! Luckily, we are planning on spending a night in Zaragosa before continuing up to the Canfranc/Somport area. One of our favorite restaurants in Spain is there and it's a large city so we should be able to ship our clothes from there.
 

Re-tired

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances
I did Toulouse to Santiago this year. I didn't follow your route exactly but here are my days per section.

Toulouse to Somport via Lourdes (Arles/Piemont): 13 days
Somport to Puente la Reina (Aragones): 7
Puente la Reina to Leon (Frances): 14
Leon to Oviedo (Salvador): 5
Oviedo to Santiago (Primitivo): 11

Slow pace with the exception of Salvador which was just right. If I were to do this again, I'd definitely cut 2-3 days from Francis.

I brought along an old Miam Miam Dodo that covered Aurelia, Tolosona and Aragones but didn't really use and ended up tossing. Instead I relied on GPS tracks that I had downloaded and Gronze which was enough for me.

There are instructions on here to forward stuff to Ivar. I used it one year and it worked perfectly.
Thank you sir.
 

Re-tired

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances
I second the suggestion to walk up from Marie-St-Oloron! Stunning! What months are you walking, though? That really can change this route (snow vs searing sun!)

With side-trips, rest days, and walking an average of 20-25km a day, we did it in 40 days
We will be walking in September and October.
 
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
Regarding clothes after your Camino, Santiago has some wonderful inexpensive shopping.
 

Albertagirl

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (2015); Aragones-Frances (2016); VdlP-Sanabres (2017); Madrid-Frances-Invierno (2019)Levante
I walked the Camino Aragones several years ago, beginning in Oloron Ste Marie. For an English language guidebook to the Aragones, I used the Camino d'Arles part 2 guidebook from the English online site, The Confraternity of St James.
 

Kjell family

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Pontferrada to Santiago ( April 2018), Porto to Santiago (April, 2020)
I would concur about shopping at the end. We picked up some high quality, non hiking clothes at the end that served us very well for the 6 weeks of traveling in Europe following our walk (2 adults, a teen and a child)
 

Jenny@zen

Jenny
Camino(s) past & future
Frances LePuy Primitivo Arles Aragones Norte Rota Vicentina Portuguese Stevenson Madrid Salvador ...
The wife and I are in the process of planning our first Camino walk. We've been to Spain a few times and love the country but have never walked a Camino. Our current plan is to buy round-trip airfare to Madrid with around 88 or 89 days between arrival and departure to make sure we don't go over the 90 day Schengen Zone limit. Arriving in September and departing in December. To get the most varied Camino experience we are contemplating beginning our walk in Somport and doing the Aragones walk, connecting to the Frances, and then breaking off and doing the Invierno into Santiago. We are retired but both in excellent shape (gym rats) and have no concerns about the distance. So, that preliminary plan in mind, a few questions:

1. What's a ballpark number of days to do this walk at a relaxed pace. It seems from looking at maps that the distance should be roughly the same as walking the entire Frances. Our hope is that we will have plenty of time after completing this walk, including a few days rest here and there, to do some more sightseeing in other parts of Spain or Portugal.

2. Assuming we have enough time after reaching Santiago to go touring around the country for a few weeks, we would like to send some extra clothes to Santiago when we start out to use after our walk. I'm not finding a link on the forum site for the service to have our stuff held in Santiago. Would we send a bag via the post office from Madrid, and who would we send it to?

3. We don't see a guide available for purchase in the forum store for the Aragones. Where should we look for one, or is there an app that would suffice?

Thanks in advance.
hi there. I’ve walked the Aragones twice - once as the final stage of the Arles Way and the second time (September this year) as the first stage of a Camino of our own design, much as you’re doing. It’s fabulous.

We didn’t have a guide book but this website is very useful including with accommodation information. Enjoy.

 

Bombero

New Member
The wife and I are in the process of planning our first Camino walk. We've been to Spain a few times and love the country but have never walked a Camino. Our current plan is to buy round-trip airfare to Madrid with around 88 or 89 days between arrival and departure to make sure we don't go over the 90 day Schengen Zone limit. Arriving in September and departing in December. To get the most varied Camino experience we are contemplating beginning our walk in Somport and doing the Aragones walk, connecting to the Frances, and then breaking off and doing the Invierno into Santiago. We are retired but both in excellent shape (gym rats) and have no concerns about the distance. So, that preliminary plan in mind, a few questions:

1. What's a ballpark number of days to do this walk at a relaxed pace. It seems from looking at maps that the distance should be roughly the same as walking the entire Frances. Our hope is that we will have plenty of time after completing this walk, including a few days rest here and there, to do some more sightseeing in other parts of Spain or Portugal.

2. Assuming we have enough time after reaching Santiago to go touring around the country for a few weeks, we would like to send some extra clothes to Santiago when we start out to use after our walk. I'm not finding a link on the forum site for the service to have our stuff held in Santiago. Would we send a bag via the post office from Madrid, and who would we send it to?

3. We don't see a guide available for purchase in the forum store for the Aragones. Where should we look for one, or is there an app that would suffice?

Thanks in advance.

Re-tired,

We walked the Camino Argones in 2014 from Canfranc to Puente La Reina then re-positioned to Roncevalles and walked from there to Santiago along the Camino Frances and on to Finisterre, starting at the end of March and finishing at the end of May - in all, 1020 km in 64 days. I would describe our pace as "relaxed". We had previously walked Camino Frances in 2001 in 28 days (not "relaxed") and did the albergue thing but were looking to see the sights and smell the roses this time. Here's my blog: http://pamnjeff.com/caminoaragones/

We used El Camino de Santiago Desde Roncesvalles y desde Somport (2nd edition, 2009) by Joan Fiol Boada as guide. It is in Castellano. Here's the link https://www.lectio.es/el-camino-de-santiago-25. If you want to see what it looks like, click on the ¿Quieres probarlo? link on the above page. This is a good resource too (in Castellano) https://www.gronze.com/camino-aragones

BTW a functional level of Spanish would be useful on the Aragones. We didn't encounter anyone speaking English but that is not to say nobody speaks English.
 
Thread starter OLDER threads on this topic Forum Replies Date
A Camino Aragonés 16
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