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Question about starting in Lisbon - July 2021

emma.s

New Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2021
Hi there!

We are hoping to start walking from Lisbon soon, but I am curious about accommodation along the way. It looks like the one main hostel in Alpriate is closed at the moment... does anyone have more information? Or recommendations on a different town/hostel to stay in on day 1?

Thanks in advance,
Emma
 
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jungleboy

Spirit of the Camino (Nick)
Year of past OR future Camino
Francés 2017
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If it's closed there aren't many great options. It has been mentioned that more informal accommodation can be arranged in Alpriate, or the other option (which is what we did last year) is to walk further to Alverca do Ribatejo. There are a few options there but it makes for a long day (around 36km) from Lisbon.
 

Pilgrim9

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
SJPdP-SdC (2017)
SdC-Muxia-Fisterra-SdC (2017)
Lisboa-SdC (2018)
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An alternate strategy:

There were and probably still are frequent and economical commuter trains alongside The Way between Lisboa and (I think it was) Azambuja, with many intermediate stations right on the Camino. One can walk "Camino north" (which here is north-east), with a day pack as far one wishes on day 1, then hop on a commuter train back to the big city to return to your pre-booked lodgings, rest up overnight, then on day 2 visit city museums etc., on day 3 take a commuter train to your previous stopping point and walk north again for a day, spend day 4 back in Lisboa, repeat cycle until you run out of commuter trains.

This is in no sense "cheating": you will still be walking every inch of The Way.

Doing this for the first few days provides a gentle way to build up walking fitness and avoid the problems of finding lodgings along this first section, whilst getting to know Lisboa. It also provides the stability of a fixed base in Lisboa for a few nights. Lisboa provides a vastly wider selection of good restaurants and other infrastructure such as laundromats than does The Way.

Lisboa and Sintra (a short train ride away to the west) are stuffed full of really really interesting places to explore or just for walking around the neighbourhoods.

I spent a full a week in Lisboa and Sintra before my northwards walk and a second week there after completing my pilgrimage. Each of those 14 days in Lisboa and Sintra was time well spent, and I still want to go back for more.

Lisbon commuter train schedules:

Frequent Metro trains run to the north of Porto for a few days' walk alongside The Way too.
 

peregrina2000

Moderator
Staff member
Hi there!

We are hoping to start walking from Lisbon soon, but I am curious about accommodation along the way. It looks like the one main hostel in Alpriate is closed at the moment... does anyone have more information? Or recommendations on a different town/hostel to stay in on day 1?

Thanks in advance,
Emma
Hi @emma.s,

Totally agree about the commuter rail. When I first walked this route in 2008 I was living in Lisbon for the year. I walked out and trained back all the way from Lisbon to Tomar. After Tomar I broke it up into two or three day stages into Porto, again using trains (though not the commuter trains, obviously). The only slight inconvenience was that in Golega, I had to walk out to a place near Entroncamento (Riachos, I think) to get the train back to Lisbon. When I came back to Entroncamento from Lisbon, I took a cab to Golega. :p

The commuter line parallels the camino for a fairly long way, so it’s a good option, at least if you are comfortable with doing some “out and back” days.

If you‘re not thrilled with the train idea, another option would be to spend the first night in Parque das Naçoes, and then the next day Alverca is only about 19. I believe there is a youth hostel in Parque das Naçoes but there are also a few hotels. It’s a nice place, the site of the Lisbon Expo, river walk, parks, playgrounds, great aquarium, lots of places to eat and drink.
 
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Frequent Metro trains run to the north of Porto for a few days' walk alongside The Way too.
My wife and I followed this exact same strategy in 2018, using the metro as far as Póvoa de Varzim, and then the train to Viana do Castelo. It's not for everyone, but if you're Newbies to the Camino and need to build up your physical conditioning first (medical issues, etc.), it's worthy of consideration.
 

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