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Questions regarding the Rota Vicentina...

Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2015); Camino Norte/Primitivo (2016); Camino Frances (2017); Le Puy (June 2018)
#1
Hello all,
I am considering walking the Rota Vicentina with my son, possibly in November 2018, but most likely in April/May 2019. We are in very preliminary stages of this and would like to combine it with a tourist visit of Lisbon and Sintra, then a train to Porto to then walk the Portuguese route, possibly a combination of the coastal and interior routes to Santiago.

I would like to know if the Fisherman's route is very difficult with so much sandy walking on cliffs, if potential vertigo and fear of heights could be an issue, and any input (good or bad) from those of you who have walked it. There is also the Historical route in this area, which could also be added in. I have not really researched much at this point. I do have the main website saved, but would like opinions from those who have walked it. I will look forward to some replies. Thank you!
 

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Camino(s) past & future
Madrid to Santiago (May 2016)
#2
I don't suffer from vertigo, but my sister does and the cliffs weren't a problem for her. Besides the heat (we walked in September when it 30+ degrees and blazing sunlight, the only problem was the very fine sand. We used hiking poles, and got into the habit of just ploughing on in a steady rhythm, spreading out weight across our feet and poles. If I ever go there again, I'd use the snow baskets on my poles to offer more resistance.

I tried walking without my poles once, and gave up after a few steps: the effort more than doubled, with my feet sinking into the sand with every step.

That said, it's a gorgeous walk, and as long as you have poles and use them properly, you'll love it.
 

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Gyrovague

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
San Jean Pied de Port to Finisterre (2017)
#7
Hello all,
I am considering walking the Rota Vicentina with my son, possibly in November 2018, but most likely in April/May 2019. We are in very preliminary stages of this and would like to combine it with a tourist visit of Lisbon and Sintra, then a train to Porto to then walk the Portuguese route, possibly a combination of the coastal and interior routes to Santiago.

I would like to know if the Fisherman's route is very difficult with so much sandy walking on cliffs, if potential vertigo and fear of heights could be an issue, and any input (good or bad) from those of you who have walked it. There is also the Historical route in this area, which could also be added in. I have not really researched much at this point. I do have the main website saved, but would like opinions from those who have walked it. I will look forward to some replies. Thank you!
I walked the Rota Vicentina from Cabo de São Vicente to Santiago do Cacém in June 2018 using a combination of the Fishermen's Route and Historical Way. My experience was that the sand along the coastal route was difficult to walk through, especially from Vila Nova de Milfontes to Porto Covo. It's not all sand, but where I encountered long sections of sand I just put my head down and trudged along.

Walking along the cliffs was tricky in places. Much of the Fishermen's Trail is set back away from the cliffs, but there are sections quite close to the edge, and a few short sections where the trail descends/ascends steeply through rock. Trekking poles come in handy. I don't have vertigo, but in places did not want to take my eyes off the trail immediately in front of me in order to safely reach the end of a dicey stretch.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Francés (Spring '17)
Primitivo (Spring '18)
Portugués / Mozárabe (2019)
#8
Sounds like a great plan!

We are also considering the Rota Vicentina one of these years (it's quite convenient when you live in Lisbon!). We haven't completely figured out our walks/plans for next year yet but it's a possibility. @Camino Chris, if you need any assistance/tips etc regarding Lisbon, let me know.
 

Suevo

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
None yet
#9
Hi,

I walked the fishermen's trail at the end of June 2018 from Porto Covo to Odeceixe and it was very interesting. I usually hiking in the mountains, mainly in Peneda Gerês (portuguese national park) and i found this trail an easy and pleasant walk, with an amazing scenery along the coastline. There is indeed some sand walk, mainly from Porto Covo to Vila Nova de Milfontes which make this sections a bit more challenging. The trail is very well signed and overall it's a wonderful experience, you can check here in my blog more information about my journey.
 
Last edited:

edandjoan

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
St. Gallen to Muxia
2012-2018
#10
We walked last fall and loved it. It is one of our favorite walks. You can read our blog. Some places along the Fisherman's way said they would be closing the first of November or December for a couple of months. Just check. We used booking dot com one day ahead to book lodging.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Portugués, Francés, Le Puy, Rota Vicentina, De Soulac, Norte, Madrid-Salv-Primitivo
#11
Some of the accommodation listings along the Rota Vicentina on booking.com are a bit casual. Two places I had pre-booked (because it was winter, many places were closed, and I wanted to be sure of a place to sleep) had no idea I was pitching up. The first place was well and truly closed for maintenance, but there was a house nearby that had rooms for the same price. The other place was being used by a resident family, and there was nowhere else in town. There was one last bus, going to Troia, so my friend and I jumped on that. Little did we know that Troia is upmarket, with 5-star hotels, it was Valentine’s Day weekend, and everywhere was full. In the entrance of a very fancy hotel the smartly dressed doorman couldn’t help smiling at us (I love the Portuguese!), sopping wet from the torrential rain, but there was no way I was getting on that ferry to Setubal in that weather. The receptionists took pity on us when we explained that we weren’t exactly homeless, but we were homeless now, and they gave us their last room at a greatly discounted price. We felt a bit conspicuous at breakfast next morning, Valentine’s Day, amongst all the romantic couples! I am pleased to report that booking.com refunded me the difference between the place I had booked and the place where we stayed :D. Sorry, long story :oops:.
Jill
 

crackmrmac

Veteran Member
#12
Some of the accommodation listings along the Rota Vicentina on booking.com are a bit casual. Two places I had pre-booked (because it was winter, many places were closed, and I wanted to be sure of a place to sleep) had no idea I was pitching up. The first place was well and truly closed for maintenance, but there was a house nearby that had rooms for the same price. The other place was being used by a resident family, and there was nowhere else in town. There was one last bus, going to Troia, so my friend and I jumped on that. Little did we know that Troia is upmarket, with 5-star hotels, it was Valentine’s Day weekend, and everywhere was full. In the entrance of a very fancy hotel the smartly dressed doorman couldn’t help smiling at us (I love the Portuguese!), sopping wet from the torrential rain, but there was no way I was getting on that ferry to Setubal in that weather. The receptionists took pity on us when we explained that we weren’t exactly homeless, but we were homeless now, and they gave us their last room at a greatly discounted price. We felt a bit conspicuous at breakfast next morning, Valentine’s Day, amongst all the romantic couples! I am pleased to report that booking.com refunded me the difference between the place I had booked and the place where we stayed :D. Sorry, long story :oops:.
Jill
OK, can I ask, if when you arrived at lodging you had reserved on booking.com and could not gain access, did you contact booking.com and enquire how to proceed.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Portugués, Francés, Le Puy, Rota Vicentina, De Soulac, Norte, Madrid-Salv-Primitivo
#13
OK, can I ask, if when you arrived at lodging you had reserved on booking.com and could not gain access, did you contact booking.com and enquire how to proceed.
Hi, the few times that I have attempted to phone booking.com I have been put into a computerised answering system, and after 15 minutes or so (at overseas calling rates), I have given up. They phone you, you don’t phone them (my experience anyway). So no, I didn’t phone them to enquire how to proceed. Besides, a clerk at the end of a phone in the Netherlands can only commiserate, and see what else is available on their books. I knew what else was (wasn’t) available; that was why I had booked this accommodation in the first place. No, in situations like this, you have to work out what Plan B is yourself without the help of a clerk several thousand kms away :).

But I did keep a record of all my bookings and unexpected expenses, so I could send it to booking.com later!

Jill
 

crackmrmac

Veteran Member
#14
To arrive at a place reserved on booking.com and it’s unavailable seems much worse than arriving at an albergue that is completo!
I would have assumed that it would be Bookings duty to source other accommodation. However some googling seems to suggest the property is responsible for posting availability on website and they are also responsible for any overbookings.
Thanks for your information.
 

KinkyOne

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
I'am not perfect, but I'm always myself!!!
#15
...
I would have assumed that it would be Bookings duty to source other accommodation. However some googling seems to suggest the property is responsible for posting availability on website and they are also responsible for any overbookings.
...
I don't think so. I think hotels/pensiones etc. kind of "sell" certain amount of their accommodation to Booking/Trivago etc. and they are not responsible for them anymore. They are responsible if you book (and pay) directly through them though.
Maybe I'm wrong but that was the info I got about that.
 

crackmrmac

Veteran Member
#16
I don't think so. I think hotels/pensiones etc. kind of "sell" certain amount of their accommodation to Booking/Trivago etc. and they are not responsible for them anymore. They are responsible if you book (and pay) directly through them though.
Maybe I'm wrong but that was the info I got about that.
If I understand what you are saying, yes that is what I would have always assumed. After reading above posts I googled and was directed to pages on Booking.com for property holders and so I was led to believe what I just posted .
Anyway don’t quote me on anything
 
Camino(s) past & future
Several alone and with children
#18
Hello all,
I am considering walking the Rota Vicentina with my son, possibly in November 2018, but most likely in April/May 2019. We are in very preliminary stages of this and would like to combine it with a tourist visit of Lisbon and Sintra, then a train to Porto to then walk the Portuguese route, possibly a combination of the coastal and interior routes to Santiago.

I would like to know if the Fisherman's route is very difficult with so much sandy walking on cliffs, if potential vertigo and fear of heights could be an issue, and any input (good or bad) from those of you who have walked it. There is also the Historical route in this area, which could also be added in. I have not really researched much at this point. I do have the main website saved, but would like opinions from those who have walked it. I will look forward to some replies. Thank you!
It is a stunningly beautiful walk. I don't know you and your son, but my daughters were able to do it at age 13,11 without an issue. We were there in late March and it was amazing!
 
Camino(s) past & future
Several alone and with children
#19

KinkyOne

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
I'am not perfect, but I'm always myself!!!
#20
Thank you Kinky! I always treasure your advice on this forum!!!! I'm never proud of our blog as I am not convinced I can ever do the Camino any justice in writing about it.
Ahhh, it's not about doing justice to Camino. Seeing photos of happy and smiling kids in your blog - that's a reward!!!

Thanks for nice words :)
 



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