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LIVE from the Camino Primitivo or Finishing el Norte

AlexC

Member
Time of past OR future Camino
June 2023
I am loving Camino Del Norte, but trying. To decide if I finish Del Norte or try Primitivo. Any recommendations given I don’t feel I can take the most difficult route. What are your suggestions?
 
The one from Galicia (the round) and the one from Castilla & Leon. Individually numbered and made by the same people that make the ones you see on your walk.
Primitivo is more difficult but doable , but in my oppinion is the most beatiful of both.
I'll vote Primitivo, but if you don't feel you can cope with the mountains, Norte is very nice too and surely easier.
Whatever your choice ¡BUEN CAMINO, PEREGRINO!
 
A selection of Camino Jewellery
I haven't walked the Norte, but met many peregrinos on the Primitivo who started on the Norte and switched over to the Primitivo because they got tired of the pavement walking. I am 67, have a dodgy knee, but had a wonderful time on the Primitivo last month - my favorite of the three Camino routes I've walked (Frances and Portuguese Central being the others). The scenery was stunning, lots of quiet time in nature (up to Lugo, anyway), friendly people. My hiking poles made the many ups and downs doable, and I took it slow. The only descent that was tricky was the short one down to Montefurcado - lots of loose rock. The one I had worried about - down to the reservoir - was just a pleasant walk with the gentle switchbacks. And the views at the reservoir are beautiful! Enjoy your Camino, either way!
 
I walked the entire Norte and I enjoyed it. A few pilgrims who I walked with on the Norte split to walk the Primitivo. I was lucky enough to see them by pure accident when I arrived in Arzua. They all were happy they walked the Primitivo. They said it was beautiful, not to be compared because the scenery is so different. They all said it was more difficult than the Norte. I did enjoy my very quiet Norte. I saw maybe 4 pilgrims from the split until I got t Baamonde.
 
Finishing the Norte would be the easier option physically speaking with significantly less ascents and descents than the Primitivo. It is also less populated than the Norte up to that Oviedo/Gijon fork point as many opt for the Primitivo option. You also get to stay by the coast for an additional 5 or so days at least which is a delight. And best of all, it gives you a good reason to come back some time to do the Primitivo ;)
 
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I am loving Camino Del Norte, but trying. To decide if I finish Del Norte or try Primitivo. Any recommendations given I don’t feel I can take the most difficult route. What are your suggestions?
Primativo for sure.
 
I haven't done the Primativo, but I found some of the prettiest coastal walks on the Norte occurred after the Primitivo split.
 
I haven't done the Primativo, but I found some of the prettiest coastal walks on the Norte occurred after the Primitivo split.

If you can't get enough coastal walks then there is the Ruta do Mar at the Norte split at Ribadeo. So instead of going south and ending up on the Frances, you can continue to Ferrol and down the Camino Inglés.

Or even more coastal walks with the Camiño dos Faros past Muxia and Fisterra.

If you really like the coast and hate that entry into Santiago at Arzúa, this is for you.
 
Get a spanish phone number with Airalo. eSim, so no physical SIM card. Easy to use app to add more funds if needed.
Thank you everyone. I decided to do Camino Primitivo, but I will use either Correos or a tour operator to send my backpack. Any suggestions?
 
Thank you everyone. I decided to do Camino Primitivo, but I will use either Correos or a tour operator to send my backpack. Any suggestions?
We looked into Pilbeo and Taxi Camino, and ended up using Taxi Camino, as it gave us great flexibility in scheduling - we just had to call or WhatsApp them by 8pm with our next night's destination, rather than deciding all our stages and lodgings ahead of time. They were very reliable and affordable (€5 per day up to Lugo, then €4).
 
We looked into Pilbeo and Taxi Camino, and ended up using Taxi Camino, as it gave us great flexibility in scheduling - we just had to call or WhatsApp them by 8pm with our next night's destination, rather than deciding all our stages and lodgings ahead of time. They were very reliable and affordable (€5 per day up to Lugo, then €4).
Thank you. Any recommendations for stages and accommodations?
 
Prepare for your next Camino on Santa Catalina Island, March 17-20
Do you have either Wise Pilgrim, Buen Camino, or Gronze for the Primitivo? Not knowing what your preferences are or your walking distances, and only based on a lot of reading, I can only observe that you have fewer choices "off-stage" .

Trecile has posted extensively about her Primitivo plans, if you care to see very recent examples of staging and accomodations. Look her thread up ;-)
 
Do you have either Wise Pilgrim, Buen Camino, or Gronze for the Primitivo? Not knowing what your preferences are or your walking distances, and only based on a lot of reading, I can only observe that you have fewer choices "off-stage" .

Trecile has posted extensively about her Primitivo plans, if you care to see very recent examples of staging and accomodations. Look her thread up ;-)
Thank you I got all of them and Trecille’s post is awesome. I will let you know my choices. Many thanks.
 
The one from Galicia (the round) and the one from Castilla & Leon. Individually numbered and made by the same people that make the ones you see on your walk.
If you can't get enough coastal walks then there is the Ruta do Mar at the Norte split at Ribadeo. So instead of going south and ending up on the Frances, you can continue to Ferrol and down the Camino Inglés.

Or even more coastal walks with the Camiño dos Faros past Muxia and Fisterra.

If you really like the coast and hate that entry into Santiago at Arzúa, this is for you.

⬆️ THIS ⬆️
 
Thank you. Any recommendations for stages and accommodations?
Stingy Nomads has a helpful article about the Primitivo with pdfs on stages and stays: https://stingynomads.com/camino-primitivo-stages/.
We took half stages where possible, often 20km days or less. I can recommend El Tendejon de Fernando in Esclampero for lodging, food, and views; Albergue Miguelin in La Mesa for rooms and food; Hotel Las Grandes for amazing views in the terrace to enjoy in the afternoon, at night, and in the morning, along with okay food and a comfortable room; and Albergue Rectorial de Roman in Romean for a beautiful property, a gracious host who did the Primitivo herself and fed us delicious VEGETABLES, too often overlooked in pilgrim menus.
 
Ideal pocket guides for during and after your Camino. Each weighs just 40g (1.4 oz).
Do you have either Wise Pilgrim, Buen Camino, or Gronze for the Primitivo? Not knowing what your preferences are or your walking distances, and only based on a lot of reading, I can only observe that you have fewer choices "off-stage" .

Trecile has posted extensively about her Primitivo plans, if you care to see very recent examples of staging and accomodations. Look her thread up ;-)
Thanks. Super helpful!
Don’t miss the pension in St Julian. Nice rooms and an unforgettable meal.
 
I walked the entire Norte and I enjoyed it. A few pilgrims who I walked with on the Norte split to walk the Primitivo. I was lucky enough to see them by pure accident when I arrived in Arzua. They all were happy they walked the Primitivo. They said it was beautiful, not to be compared because the scenery is so different. They all said it was more difficult than the Norte. I did enjoy my very quiet Norte. I saw maybe 4 pilgrims from the split until I got t Baamonde.
When was this that you walked?
 
Unbelievable, the Camino always provides, I am heading to Oviedo today and just got invited to a wedding in Oviedo. A good friend is getting married there and it just happened that I texted him yesterday a picture of a delicious tortilla. He then invited me for his wedding. The Camino is awesome.
 
Ideal pocket guides for during and after your Camino. Each weighs just 40g (1.4 oz).
I haven't done the Primativo, but I found some of the prettiest coastal walks on the Norte occurred after the Primitivo split.
I agree. I've walked all if the Norte before, and was feeling rather sad to be missing some of the coastal areas as I split off onto the Primitivo a few days ago. Rather than taking the Camino between La Isla and Colunga I walked along the coast to Lastres for my final coastal walk, and it was quite lovely.
Stingy Nomads has a helpful article about the Primitivo with pdfs on stages and stays
I haven't read the Stingy Nomads Primitivo guide, but a couple that I met on their first day out of Oviedo say that it suggests walking through Pola de Allande rather than the Hospitales route. They've reserved all their lodging ahead of time, so they are a little bit locked in.
 
I agree. I've walked all if the Norte before, and was feeling rather sad to be missing some of the coastal areas as I split off onto the Primitivo a few days ago. Rather than taking the Camino between La Isla and Colunga I walked along the coast to Lastres for my final coastal walk, and it was quite lovely.

I haven't read the Stingy Nomads Primitivo guide, but a couple that I met on their first day out of Oviedo say that it suggests walking through Pola de Allande rather than the Hospitales route. They've reserved all their lodging ahead of time, so they are a little bit locked in.
Stingy Nomads' guide describes both routes - Hospitales and Pola de Allande. It seems both routes have merit.
 
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I agree. I've walked all if the Norte before, and was feeling rather sad to be missing some of the coastal areas as I split off onto the Primitivo a few days ago. Rather than taking the Camino between La Isla and Colunga I walked along the coast to Lastres for my final coastal walk, and it was quite lovely.

I haven't read the Stingy Nomads Primitivo guide, but a couple that I met on their first day out of Oviedo say that it suggests walking through Pola de Allande rather than the Hospitales route. They've reserved all their lodging ahead of time, so they are a little bit locked in.
The hospitales route is supposed to be harder. I met a girl today that walked primitivo twice and advised me against it.
 
If you can do the Norte coastal, you can do Primitivo. Hospitales is beautiful. I have never done Pola, but it is also supposed to be beautiful. But don’t reject hospitales just because you think it will be too hard.
 
The hospitales route is supposed to be harder. I met a girl today that walked primitivo twice and advised me against it.
Hospitales is very beautiful (if it isn't raining) with amazing views and I highly recommend it, but it is a long day of walking without any villages between your start and finish. I'd recommend booking ahead pretty much everywhere on the Primitivo, because it is very crowded compared to accommodation (or at least was in 2021) but particularly for Berducedo (I can recommend the Albergue Camino Primitivo there, the one on the main street was supposed to be bad).

One other tip -the best albergue I have stayed at on the three caminos I have done was the five star A Pociña de Muñiz in Vilar de Cas (15km before Lugo, so you'd have a short walk the next day, but Lugo is definitely worth having more time to walk around in.)

https://www.apocinademuniz.es/
 
Technical backpack for day trips with backpack cover and internal compartment for the hydration bladder. Ideal daypack for excursions where we need a medium capacity backpack. The back with Air Flow System creates large air channels that will keep our back as cool as possible.

€83,-
I walked the entire Norte and I enjoyed it. A few pilgrims who I walked with on the Norte split to walk the Primitivo. I was lucky enough to see them by pure accident when I arrived in Arzua. They all were happy they walked the Primitivo. They said it was beautiful, not to be compared because the scenery is so different. They all said it was more difficult than the Norte. I did enjoy my very quiet Norte. I saw maybe 4 pilgrims from the split until I got t Baamonde.
Good to know you enjoyed Del Norte. My husband and I will hike it in October. I thought about splitting off to do primitivo but I wasn't sure of the challenge. I'll be 71 yo so... gotta keep it real as they say.
 
Good to know you enjoyed Del Norte. My husband and I will hike it in October. I thought about splitting off to do primitivo but I wasn't sure of the challenge. I'll be 71 yo so... gotta keep it real as they say.
one inspiration I had early on (it was tough early on) was running into a married couple who were walking.
She was 82 and he was 80. They were cruising!
 
We looked into Pilbeo and Taxi Camino, and ended up using Taxi Camino, as it gave us great flexibility in scheduling - we just had to call or WhatsApp them by 8pm with our next night's destination, rather than deciding all our stages and lodgings ahead of time. They were very reliable and affordable (€5 per day up to Lugo, then €4).
Taxi Camino is awesome. Best thing I have done was to have my bag transferred. I am enjoying a lot more my walk without the bag.
 
A selection of Camino Jewellery
I agree. I've walked all if the Norte before, and was feeling rather sad to be missing some of the coastal areas as I split off onto the Primitivo a few days ago. Rather than taking the Camino between La Isla and Colunga I walked along the coast to Lastres for my final coastal walk, and it was quite lovely.

I haven't read the Stingy Nomads Primitivo guide, but a couple that I met on their first day out of Oviedo say that it suggests walking through Pola de Allande rather than the Hospitales route. They've reserved all their lodging ahead of time, so they are a little bit locked in.
Los Hospitales is magic, don’t miss it! Particularly at sun rise.
 

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I am loving Camino Del Norte, but trying. To decide if I finish Del Norte or try Primitivo. Any recommendations given I don’t feel I can take the most difficult route. What are your suggestions?
We just finished Del Norte Camino last week. It was a fabulous adventure. Galicia really has marked their way very well. Though we had a lot of rain in Galicia we enjoyed a very solo camino not seeing any peregrines most days and there were less roads to walk on. I must say though that the roads we walked on in Galicia were rarely traveled on by cars. As long as you plan to go back it makes sense to finish the Del Norte in its entirety and then go back to do the Primitivo. (my opinion) Buen camino
 
I walked the first half of the Norte, then turned onto the Primitivo at the suggestion of Dave Whitson in his guidebook for a combination of both the sea and mountains.
This past spring I finally finished the second half of the Norte and then added in a walk from Muxia back to Santiago. I have loved all of them!
 
A Treasure Trove Of Interesting Pilgrim Hacks! Learn & Share Your Own Too!
I'm planning to start the Norte in Hendaye or therabouts, join the Primitivo, but then go Lugo -> Friol -> Sobrado de Monxes (back on the Norte).

I'm not sure whether the compostela would be registered as Norte or Primitivo, particularly if I avoid joining the Frances 🧐
 
I'm planning to start the Norte in Hendaye or therabouts, join the Primitivo, but then go Lugo -> Friol -> Sobrado de Monxes (back on the Norte).

I'm not sure whether the compostela would be registered as Norte or Primitivo, particularly if I avoid joining the Frances 🧐
The Compostela doesn't indicate a route or starting point. Those are indicated on the distance certificate. On the distance certificate, I suspect it would be whatever you indicate as your starting point and route when you pre-register for your Compostela online (and check the box that you want a distance certificate. When I did the Madrid/Salvador/Primitivo earlier this year, my distance certificate said I started in Madrid and walked by "Otros Caminos".
 

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