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Roncesvalles Reservation - with or without dinner and/or breakfast?

CndR

New Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Planned Camino Frances in Mid August thru late Sep
Hola,

When I make my reservation for Roncesvalles Pilgrim's hostel - Monastery ... should I make it with dinner and/or breakfast.

I have read through the posts and am finding it a bit confusing. Is dinner offered in the Hostel, or do they send you a restaurant and if so, do you choose the one you want?? Any explanation and direction here is greatly appreciated.

As far as breakfast, I know there is a town (Burguete, I think) that is pretty close and I may be able to eat breakfast and have coffee there ... but if they are not open. Ha. I love my coffee in the morning. So should I get breakfast at Roncesvalles hostel? Does anyone know how early they serve breakfast?

Thank you to all, in advance.
Cindy
 
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MinaKamina

Eclipsigrina ~ August 12, 2026
Time of past OR future Camino
Jacobspad 2017
Hola,

When I make my reservation for Roncesvalles Pilgrim's hostel - Monastery ... should I make it with dinner and/or breakfast.

I have read through the posts and am finding it a bit confusing. Is dinner offered in the Hostel, or do they send you a restaurant and if so, do you choose the one you want?? Any explanation and direction here is greatly appreciated.

As far as breakfast, I know there is a town (Burguete, I think) that is pretty close and I may be able to eat breakfast and have coffee there ... but if they are not open. Ha. I love my coffee in the morning. So should I get breakfast at Roncesvalles hostel? Does anyone know how early they serve breakfast?

Thank you to all, in advance.
Cindy

A few of the above what-if problems are resolved once you make a reservation and include dinner and breakfast. You'll have a bed to sleep in, no worries about dinner, and breakfast in the morning.
 
Time of past OR future Camino
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I always purchase bed and dinner. I have found better breakfasts up the trail in Burguete. The Compound at Roncesvalles is only a few buildings all very close together in a smaller space than a "block" in the USA so walking from one to the other takes literally minutes. Your choices for dinner are at Casa Sabina or La Posada. I like La Posada because they serve (when I've been there) at larger tables. Sabina has served at smaller tables of 4-6. The food choices are pretty much the same and if you like fish, I highly recommend the local trout. I usually take the first dinner so I can attend the Pilgrim Mass.
 

CndR

New Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Planned Camino Frances in Mid August thru late Sep
I always purchase bed and dinner. I have found better breakfasts up the trail in Burguete. The Compound at Roncesvalles is only a few buildings all very close together in a smaller space than a "block" in the USA so walking from one to the other takes literally minutes. Your choices for dinner are at Casa Sabina or La Posada. I like La Posada because they serve (when I've been there) at larger tables. Sabina has served at smaller tables of 4-6. The food choices are pretty much the same and if you like fish, I highly recommend the local trout. I usually take the first dinner so I can attend the Pilgrim Mass.
Thank you so very much for this amazing information ... exactly what I wanted to know! :).
 
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Latest: Rota Vicentina '19; Portuguese '19.
@Anniesantiago, I too, liked La Posada, and ate dinner there both times as I liked the food and ambiance.
I rarely eat the breakfasts offered at hostels and albergues; preferring my fave cafe con leche and more variety, rather than the standard toast and jam usually served. I'm willing to wait and always find a nice bar/cafe a little later.
 
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CndR

New Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Planned Camino Frances in Mid August thru late Sep
@Anniesantiago, I too, liked La Posada, and ate dinner there both times as I liked the food and ambiance.
I rarely eat the breakfasts offered at hostels and albergues; preferring my fave cafe con leche and more variety, rather than the standard toast and jam usually served. I'm willing to wait and always find a nice bar/cafe a little later.
Thank you! Sounds like that will be my plan!
 

Jeff B

Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Frances, Primitivo, Fisterre and Ingles
Hola,

When I make my reservation for Roncesvalles Pilgrim's hostel - Monastery ... should I make it with dinner and/or breakfast.

I have read through the posts and am finding it a bit confusing. Is dinner offered in the Hostel, or do they send you a restaurant and if so, do you choose the one you want?? Any explanation and direction here is greatly appreciated.

As far as breakfast, I know there is a town (Burguete, I think) that is pretty close and I may be able to eat breakfast and have coffee there ... but if they are not open. Ha. I love my coffee in the morning. So should I get breakfast at Roncesvalles hostel? Does anyone know how early they serve breakfast?

Thank you to all, in advance.
Cindy
I did both. the dinner was good - chance to have a sit down with fellow pilgrims, and the food was fine. I'd skip the breakfast - dried bread/toast with jam - and eat in one of the towns shortly after
Roncesvalles.
 
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jsalt

Jill
Time of past OR future Camino
Portugués, Francés, LePuy, Rota Vicentina, Norte, Madrid, C2C, Salvador, Primitivo, Aragonés, Inglés
Ditto for dinner, but not breakfast.
Having said that, I am a breakfast person. And on my first CF I enjoyed the breakfast.

However, we were crammed in, fast and furious, get in get out scenario, as so many had booked breakfast and they had to accommodate all.

Would never do it again at Roncesvalles.
 

Anamiri

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2016, 2017, 2019 Camino Frances
Hola,

When I make my reservation for Roncesvalles Pilgrim's hostel - Monastery ... should I make it with dinner and/or breakfast.

I have read through the posts and am finding it a bit confusing. Is dinner offered in the Hostel, or do they send you a restaurant and if so, do you choose the one you want?? Any explanation and direction here is greatly appreciated.

As far as breakfast, I know there is a town (Burguete, I think) that is pretty close and I may be able to eat breakfast and have coffee there ... but if they are not open. Ha. I love my coffee in the morning. So should I get breakfast at Roncesvalles hostel? Does anyone know how early they serve breakfast?

Thank you to all, in advance.
Cindy
Bed and dinner. Breakfast at Burguete was nice and popular, and not too far away.
 

Ianinam

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
CF 2013 / CP 2018
For the dinner (€ 11,00) you have the choice between the 7 pm and the 8.30 pm dinner. The pilgrims Mass in church is at 8 pm (on Sundays at 6 pm) so you will be able to attend the mass too. Most pilgrims prefer the 7 pm dinner. Breakfast is € 5,00 and starts at 7 am. In my opinion much too late for early starters. In the albergue we have vending machines with sandwiches and yogourts, there is a coin operated coffee machine, so take a cup of coffee and just start walking. In half an hour you are in Burguete, the bar and the supermarket are open early in the morning.
 
Time of past OR future Camino
2023
I see that the Roncesvalles Albergue website only offers a single choice for breakfast.

When I walked in mid May 2019, without a reservation, I was offered two choices for breakfast with my bed. A small breakfast and a large breakfast. The small breakfast was just toast and jam while the large breakfast included omelette and bacon.

BTW, I noticed on the website that they are still only allowing reservations for the 60 beds on the first floor (2nd floor for americans) while holding back the other 120 beds for walk in pilgrims. So, if it seems like Roncesvalles is full when you try to reserve then it is only the first floor that is full.
 
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F

Former member 49149

Guest
I can only speak about the breakfast. In Burguete, as in any village: you can choose the first one you see or hedge your bets. We waited, and found a cafe on the main street heading onwards. Well up ten steps to the left, on a kind of plaza. The tortilla was just done. The bread, so fresh, the cafe con leche, bliss.
 

simongx

New Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Oct-Nov 2021 (Camino Francés)
I was there in late October 2021, and I had reserved both breakfast and dinner. I was given a voucher and sent to the restaurant of Hotel Roncesvalles, right opposite the church. This for both dinner and breakfast, and I think it may have something to do with covid measures - the dining area in the albergue was not used (although it was accessible). I understand some people were also sent to La Posada. Since this is mentioned in the original question: no, I was not given a choice. The quality of both dinner and breakfast was decent, and worth the price. Just be careful with expectations for breakfast: it consisted of coffee/tea, orange juice and toasted bread with butter/jam.

Roncesvalles is a small place, so the dinner through the albergue made sense for me. As for breakfast, I found it very convenient to have breakfast before starting out, given that daylight comes only after 8 a.m. at that time of the year. I also do not remember seeing anything open in the first couple of villages below Roncesvalles, but this again must be because I was there out of season. I am sure that in summer, something will be open.
 
Time of past OR future Camino
Yearly and Various 2014-2019
Via Monastica 2022
I can only speak about the breakfast. In Burguete, as in any village: you can choose the first one you see or hedge your bets. We waited, and found a cafe on the main street heading onwards. Well up ten steps to the left, on a kind of plaza. The tortilla was just done. The bread, so fresh, the cafe con leche, bliss.
My experience too - and it was early March. So still off season.
 

Jodean

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2015 CF, 17.04.-26.05.22 CF
15.04-31.05.23 CF
I reserved dinner and breakfast. Even though it isn't a wonderful breakfast, I do like to have a cup of coffee first thing in the morning so I can go use the WC before leaving.
Having a couple of pieces of toast is enough to keep me going for quite a while.
 

Ianinam

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
CF 2013 / CP 2018
I see that the Roncesvalles Albergue website only offers a single choice for breakfast.

When I walked in mid May 2019, without a reservation, I was offered two choices for breakfast with my bed. A small breakfast and a large breakfast. The small breakfast was just toast and jam while the large breakfast included omelette and bacon.

BTW, I noticed on the website that they are still only allowing reservations for the 60 beds on the first floor (2nd floor for americans) while holding back the other 120 beds for walk in pilgrims. So, if it seems like Roncesvalles is full when you try to reserve then it is only the first floor that is full.
Yes, it used to be two choices for a breakfast: the € 3,50 one for a simple breakfast (coffee/tea, toast, jam and juice) and the € 5,-- breakfast (the same but with meat/cheese/egg). Now they only offer the € 5,-- breakfast. As the restaurants only serve the breakfast at 7 am, in summer, when people want to start early, we always advise them to just start walking (take a coffee from our coffeemachine) and take the breakfast in Burguete, after half an hours' walk.
 
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kelleymac

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
March/April 2015, Late April 2016, Sept/Oct 2017, April 2019.
Hola,

When I make my reservation for Roncesvalles Pilgrim's hostel - Monastery ... should I make it with dinner and/or breakfast.

I have read through the posts and am finding it a bit confusing. Is dinner offered in the Hostel, or do they send you a restaurant and if so, do you choose the one you want?? Any explanation and direction here is greatly appreciated.

As far as breakfast, I know there is a town (Burguete, I think) that is pretty close and I may be able to eat breakfast and have coffee there ... but if they are not open. Ha. I love my coffee in the morning. So should I get breakfast at Roncesvalles hostel? Does anyone know how early they serve breakfast?

Thank you to all, in advance.
Cindy

We didn't make reservations (May 2016), but asked for to be put down for the early dinner when we signed in at the hostel (at about 2pm). Even if you're not Catholic/Christian/religious, the pilgrims mass and blessing is worth going to. The church is beautiful-- and the community and blessing is very memorable to me.

As for breakfast...I think I got a horrible coffee out of a machine, and we had some bread and cheese in our packs (maybe a squashed pain au chocolat?) and munched on that.
 
Time of past OR future Camino
July 5th 2018
Hola,

When I make my reservation for Roncesvalles Pilgrim's hostel - Monastery ... should I make it with dinner and/or breakfast.

I have read through the posts and am finding it a bit confusing. Is dinner offered in the Hostel, or do they send you a restaurant and if so, do you choose the one you want?? Any explanation and direction here is greatly appreciated.

As far as breakfast, I know there is a town (Burguete, I think) that is pretty close and I may be able to eat breakfast and have coffee there ... but if they are not open. Ha. I love my coffee in the morning. So should I get breakfast at Roncesvalles hostel? Does anyone know how early they serve breakfast?

Thank you to all, in advance.
Cindy

If your lucky and get to eat at the Nice restaurant at the hotel. Then dinner is Nice. If you get dinner at the bar. Then it’s not worth it imo.

Breakfast is not worth it.
 

Jackieduda

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
CF September (2018)
Hola,

When I make my reservation for Roncesvalles Pilgrim's hostel - Monastery ... should I make it with dinner and/or breakfast.

I have read through the posts and am finding it a bit confusing. Is dinner offered in the Hostel, or do they send you a restaurant and if so, do you choose the one you want?? Any explanation and direction here is greatly appreciated.

As far as breakfast, I know there is a town (Burguete, I think) that is pretty close and I may be able to eat breakfast and have coffee there ... but if they are not open. Ha. I love my coffee in the morning. So should I get breakfast at Roncesvalles hostel? Does anyone know how early they serve breakfast?

Thank you to all, in advance.
Cindy
Definately have both meals there. The food is good, and you wont have to walk back and forth to town before you begin your walk.
 
Time of past OR future Camino
July 5th 2018
Definately have both meals there. The food is good, and you wont have to walk back and forth to town before you begin your walk.
Back and forth. Everything is within 2 mins :). But you never know if you get to eat at the bar or restaurant until you have payed and get your tickets. I’ve eaten twice at the bar and twice at the restaurant at the hotel.
 

Ianinam

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
CF 2013 / CP 2018
If your lucky and get to eat at the Nice restaurant at the hotel. Then dinner is Nice. If you get dinner at the bar. Then it’s not worth it imo.

Breakfast is not worth it.
Dinner in the restaurant of the hotel is good, but dinner in the restaurant of Casa Sabina was extremely good last year. It is not - as you write - in the bar where you can only have pinxtos (tapas). Dinner is served in the restaurant of Casa Sabina. There is another restaurant, La Posada, last year the dinner there was not as good as in Casa Sabina. I don't yet know how it will be this year; it all depends on the cook, and they have problems nowadays in finding personnel to work there (as everywhere in the hotels/restaurants after the Covid lockdowns ...).
 
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Time of past OR future Camino
July 5th 2018
Dinner in the restaurant of the hotel is good, but dinner in the restaurant of Casa Sabina was extremely good last year. It is not - as you write - in the bar where you can only have pinxtos (tapas). Dinner is served in the restaurant of Casa Sabina. There is another restaurant, La Posada, last year the dinner there was not as good as in Casa Sabina. I don't yet know how it will be this year; it all depends on the cook, and they have problems nowadays in finding personnel to work there (as everywhere in the hotels/restaurants after the Covid lockdowns ...).

Well the original message was about food from the monastery. And of all the times I’ve slept there. There was only either the hotel or La Posada. And La Posada was bad imo before covid.
 
Time of past OR future Camino
To Santiago and back (roads & paths; Tours; Francés; sea; roads & paths)
if your lucky and get to eat at the Nice restaurant at the hotel
I guess that needs some explanation. Do you mean the restaurant of the Hotel Roncesvalles, the restaurant of La Posada, or the restaurant of Casa Sabina?

The restaurant of the Hotel Roncesvalles, with one small entrance door (under the doorway) close to the albergue, serves their own guests but I think it is open to other customers, too. Their breakfast buffet is one of my better culinary memories of the Camino Frances (I stayed at the place). I don't know whether their breakfast buffet is open to customers who did not pay to spend the night at the hotel.
 
Last edited:
F

Former member 99290

Guest
When we stayed at the albergue in Roncesvalles in 2014 and booked the dinner option, to my surprise the dinner was at the Hotel Roncesvalles. 😎
 

Becky 59

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Camino Frances 2018, 2021
Camino Ingles (Aug 2019)
Definitely reserve dinner. My first time in Roncesvalles in May 2018, we arrived late, all the reservable dinner slots were full, and my dinner consisted of a pack of almonds from a vending machine so I could make it to mass, followed by tapas at the bar much later. The monastery seems to usurp most of the food service in town. Last fall, I reserved dinner and was assigned to eat at the Roncesvalles Hotel, and had a wonderful evening with the eight people at my table. Buen camino!
 

Ianinam

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
CF 2013 / CP 2018
@Thedanishvikingpilgrim: there is no such thing as 'food from the Monastry'. In the albergue itself there is no restaurant, there are only vending machines (and microwaves) with sandwiches, meals (rice- and pastameals), yogourts, drinks etc. As Kathar1na already explained, there is a restaurant in the hotel, and two other restaurants: La Posada and Casa Sabina.

@anamcara, yes, if the restaurants fill up quickly and the restaurant of the hotel still has capacity, you can have a pilgrims dinner for the same price as in the restaurants. The normal price for a three course meal in the hotelrestaurant is somewhat higher, I think it is € 18,00 instead of the € 11,00 for a three course pilgrims dinner (including wine and water) in the two restaurants. So you were lucky!

@Katharina, yes, the hotelrestaurant is also open for people who do not sleep there. I always eat there with my group of hospitaleros when we arrive on the day before our working period starts.
 
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nathanael

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Frances, Norte, Plata,
I always purchase bed and dinner. I have found better breakfasts up the trail in Burguete. The Compound at Roncesvalles is only a few buildings all very close together in a smaller space than a "block" in the USA so walking from one to the other takes literally minutes. Your choices for dinner are at Casa Sabina or La Posada. I like La Posada because they serve (when I've been there) at larger tables. Sabina has served at smaller tables of 4-6. The food choices are pretty much the same and if you like fish, I highly recommend the local trout. I usually take the first dinner so I can attend the Pilgrim Mass.
I have had bed and dinner which is great breakfast was tough due to the small cafe being packed.
 
Time of past OR future Camino
To Santiago and back (roads & paths; Tours; Francés; sea; roads & paths)
Just noticed that the Roncesvalles Pilgrim albergue now has photos of the food that you get for your meal ticket on their revamped booking webpage. Breakfast, dinner (it's alway either trout or chicken, there's no variation I think) and who knew that you can even buy a picnic?

Roncesvalles meals.jpg
 
Time of past OR future Camino
To Santiago and back (roads & paths; Tours; Francés; sea; roads & paths)
For first-time pilgrims: the meal photos on the bookings page of the Roncesvalles pilgrim albergue are a good introduction to the concept of "pilgrim meal" or "menu del peregrino". Soup or pasta, frites/chips/fries with some kind of animal protein, absence of vegetables, the 'free' bottle of wine that you may or may not quickly get tired of, and a dessert that may consist of an ice cream cone upside down on a plate and in its wrapper. Ah, nostalgia ... 🤭
 

Schamber

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
May and June 2022
For the dinner (€ 11,00) you have the choice between the 7 pm and the 8.30 pm dinner. The pilgrims Mass in church is at 8 pm (on Sundays at 6 pm) so you will be able to attend the mass too. Most pilgrims prefer the 7 pm dinner. Breakfast is € 5,00 and starts at 7 am. In my opinion much too late for early starters. In the albergue we have vending machines with sandwiches and yogourts, there is a coin operated coffee machine, so take a cup of coffee and just start walking. In half an hour you are in Burguete, the bar and the supermarket are open early in the morning.
Best answer award!!
 

Tincatinker

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2012
"menu del peregrino"
An excellent learning opportunity for nuevos peregrinos.

"Menu del Peregrino" = they're tired & hungry and won't be back for at least a year if ever. They'll eat anything.

"Menu del Dia" = this is what my local clientele look for - the local workers; the gentlemen and ladies of the Guardia; the Mayor and his/her party members... If this isn't tasty, nutritious, generous I'm out of business.

That said the grilled Trout in the Posada has been memorable even if the wine was unspeakable.
 
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Juliawalking

New Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Camino Frances: 2005 2007
Hospitalaria Canfranc
Hola,

When I make my reservation for Roncesvalles Pilgrim's hostel - Monastery ... should I make it with dinner and/or breakfast.

I have read through the posts and am finding it a bit confusing. Is dinner offered in the Hostel, or do they send you a restaurant and if so, do you choose the one you want?? Any explanation and direction here is greatly appreciated.

As far as breakfast, I know there is a town (Burguete, I think) that is pretty close and I may be able to eat breakfast and have coffee there ... but if they are not open. Ha. I love my coffee in the morning. So should I get breakfast at Roncesvalles hostel? Does anyone know how early they serve breakfast?

Thank you to all, in advance.
Cindy
Hi Cindy, here is my Roncevalles experience from rather a long time ago:
When we finally made our way into Roncevalles, we went to the hotel to book supper, there were two sittings and you needed to pay ahead of time. We were at round tables of 8 or so which was lovely as we got to socialize. We were in the overflow of the overflow dormitory and next morning all was closed for non-residents at the hotel. We walked to Buguete and on the square there was cafe and he was open and doing a brisk business with coffee and ham sandwiches and we were grateful that he was open early on the Sunday morning.
This is my memory from rather a long time ago!
Buen camino.
Julia
 

Schamber

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
May and June 2022
We have booked a room at hotel Roncesvalles. I asked if we had to book dinner ahead of time and she get the lid us no, they would have a tabele for us. Different than the municipal i’m sure. We aren’t going to get the breakfast and we’ll wait for the next town. I also need my coffee and bough so will have tat in my hotel room first!!
 

tpmchugh

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2018
Hola,

When I make my reservation for Roncesvalles Pilgrim's hostel - Monastery ... should I make it with dinner and/or breakfast.

I have read through the posts and am finding it a bit confusing. Is dinner offered in the Hostel, or do they send you a restaurant and if so, do you choose the one you want?? Any explanation and direction here is greatly appreciated.

As far as breakfast, I know there is a town (Burguete, I think) that is pretty close and I may be able to eat breakfast and have coffee there ... but if they are not open. Ha. I love my coffee in the morning. So should I get breakfast at Roncesvalles hostel? Does anyone know how early they serve breakfast?

Thank you to all, in advance.
Cindy
Definitely go for dinner. The restaurants fill up pretty quickly. Last time I was there, I booked but a friend did not. She thought she could just walk in but it was booked out. That was in April so will be even worse later in year. Breakfast not a problem, you can always get a bite to eat in burgette if need be
 

CndR

New Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Planned Camino Frances in Mid August thru late Sep
Thank you so much to everyone and all your direction and information. I am so grateful!!
 
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Bill905

Pilgrim
Time of past OR future Camino
CF 2019
CP 2022
Via Podiensis 2022
I don't remember the dinner we had in Roncesvalles, but I remember the breakfast, and I loved it - a bottomless coffee urn and good company! And despite my research before going, and my ambitious plan of shopping and cooking, after two days of trying that I quickly found that I had no energy to find a shop, do the shopping, cook, and then clean up afterwards. It was probably due to my advanced age of 66 at the time! 😁 But the real reason was that I found the communal meals were the best option for a rookie like I was ... I actually learned many things about the Camino and its resources while eating and conversing with other pilgrims, some of whom remain friends to this day. Let me put it another way, I think the benefits of a communal meal or going out to a restaurant with other pilgrims outweigh the tasks of cooking and cleaning up etc. If you go the communal route, you can also dispense with the space and weight of carrying eating utensils and even the lightweight dishes. I can easily and strongly recommend communal meals as often as possible.
 
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my ambitious plan of shopping and cooking, after two days of trying that I quickly found that I had no energy to find a shop, do the shopping, cook, and then clean up afterwards.
Amen! I never cooked one meal on my Caminos; I do that at home and too tired. I prefer to sit, whether at a communal dinner or a pub/restaurant.
OTOH, people do love the communal cooking together to both save money and enjoy having a shared experience with new friends. They do seem happy doing it.
 

Snowflake5090

New Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Camino Frances
I see that the Roncesvalles Albergue website only offers a single choice for breakfast.

When I walked in mid May 2019, without a reservation, I was offered two choices for breakfast with my bed. A small breakfast and a large breakfast. The small breakfast was just toast and jam while the large breakfast included omelette and bacon.

BTW, I noticed on the website that they are still only allowing reservations for the 60 beds on the first floor (2nd floor for americans) while holding back the other 120 beds for walk in pilgrims. So, if it seems like Roncesvalles is full when you try to reserve then it is only the first floor that is full.
I'm arriving in Roncesvalles on 16th May and debating whether to pre book/pay for dinner and a bed at the Albergue.. Do you think this is advisable or d'you think I'd be ok to just to turn up? .. Also any idea if I can pay by cash?
 

trecile

Moderator
Staff member
Time of past OR future Camino
PAST - Francés, Norte, Salvador, Portuguese
I'm arriving in Roncesvalles on 16th May and debating whether to pre book/pay for dinner and a bed at the Albergue.. Do you think this is advisable or d'you think I'd be ok to just to turn up? .. Also any idea if I can pay by cash?
Since May, along with September are the busiest months for pilgrims starting from SJPdP, I would go ahead and book at Roncesvalles. Then you can take your time and walk without worrying that there's a place for you.
If you don't book ahead you can pay cash when you arrive.
 

Snowflake5090

New Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Camino Frances
Since May, along with September are the busiest months for pilgrims starting from SJPdP, I would go ahead and book at Roncesvalles. Then you can take your time and walk without worrying that there's a place for you.
If you don't book ahead you can pay cash when you arrive.
Thanks for good advise 🙏
 
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Time of past OR future Camino
2023
Thanks for good advise 🙏
Just to be clear, Roncesvalles has a total of 180 pilgrim beds. 60 of those can be reserved beforehand while 120 are kept for walk-in pilgrims on a first in first served basis.

I don't know if it is possible to reserve a meal without also reserving a bed.

I also don't know what the maximum number of meals that can be delivered is. I suspect, but don't know, that it is less than 180.
 
Time of past OR future Camino
2023
I'm arriving in Roncesvalles on 16th May and debating whether to pre book/pay for dinner and a bed at the Albergue.. Do you think this is advisable or d'you think I'd be ok to just to turn up? .. Also any idea if I can pay by cash?
Depends on when you think that you will arrive. I was at Roncesvalles on the 16th May 2019 and I got a walk-in bed without problems. I took two days walking from SJPdP. On day one I walked to the statue of the Snow Virgin and caught the shuttle back to SJPdP then on day two I caught the shuttle back to the statue and walked from there.

The walk from the statue in the morning plus an unscripted off piste adventure (a story for another day) got me to Roncesvalles at 1:25pm (according to my Google Maps timeline). There was a long queue when I arrived and I was a little worried but I easily got a bed along with a lot of other people who arrived after me.

Of course this was my experience, on exactly the same day that you are planning. Your experience may be different but, please, don't let pre-Camino jitters get to you.

Even the pilgrims who arrived too late at Roncesvalles to get a bed there, still got a bed somewhere else and experienced an unexpected adventure while doing this.

I met one woman who had been unable to get a bed at Roncesvalles and she chose to walk on a short distance to an alternate albergue.

I have never met anyone who had to sleep outside.
 
Last edited:
Time of past OR future Camino
2023
Also, for context, from memory May 2019 has the current record for the most number of pilgrims on this section of the Camino Frances and so May 16th 2019 was probably one of the busiest days on record.
 
Time of past OR future Camino
One partial Camino
Hola,

When I make my reservation for Roncesvalles Pilgrim's hostel - Monastery ... should I make it with dinner and/or breakfast.

I have read through the posts and am finding it a bit confusing. Is dinner offered in the Hostel, or do they send you a restaurant and if so, do you choose the one you want?? Any explanation and direction here is greatly appreciated.

As far as breakfast, I know there is a town (Burguete, I think) that is pretty close and I may be able to eat breakfast and have coffee there ... but if they are not open. Ha. I love my coffee in the morning. So should I get breakfast at Roncesvalles hostel? Does anyone know how early they serve breakfast?

Thank you to all, in advance.
Cindy
I have purchased bed, dinner and a picnic to take with us the next day. Thought that might be good .
 

Albertagirl

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Frances; Aragones; VdlP; Madrid-Invierno; Levante
I enjoyed my dinner at the Posada: chance to meet other pilgrims around the table and the food was adequate, although I would have prefered a vegetarian option rather than the fish. But breakfast was a disaster. And I don't even remember the food. I had signed out at the monastery, so had my pack on my back. The restaurant was packed and I had to wait outside in the rain until there was space to go in, then leave my pack outside in the rain while I gobbled a basic breakfast, retrieved my very wet pack and went on, letting others enter. If I hadn't signed out, I would almost certainly have found myself locked out of the monastery with my pack inside, as all that waiting time meant that they were closed down for the day by the time that I was fed.
 
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Ianinam

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
CF 2013 / CP 2018
I enjoyed my dinner at the Posada: chance to meet other pilgrims around the table and the food was adequate, although I would have prefered a vegetarian option rather than the fish. But breakfast was a disaster. And I don't even remember the food. I had signed out at the monastery, so had my pack on my back. The restaurant was packed and I had to wait outside in the rain until there was space to go in, then leave my pack outside in the rain while I gobbled a basic breakfast, retrieved my very wet pack and went on, letting others enter. If I hadn't signed out, I would almost certainly have found myself locked out of the monastery with my pack inside, as all that waiting time meant that they were closed down for the day by the time that I was fed.
We always ask pilgrims to take their backpack with them when they go to the breakfast, as we close the door at 8 am and start our daily work. After a short breakfast ourselves we are quite busy cleaning the dormitories. In case someone rings at the doorbell, we do not hear that, as the bell only rings in our hospitalero-kitchen. At 10 am the Spanish lady who works in the reception-desk starts her work, and from that moment the door is open again.
 

SabsP

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
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We always ask pilgrims to take their backpack with them when they go to the breakfast, as we close the door at 8 am and start our daily work. After a short breakfast ourselves we are quite busy cleaning the dormitories. In case someone rings at the doorbell, we do not hear that, as the bell only rings in our hospitalero-kitchen. At 10 am the Spanish lady who works in the reception-desk starts her work, and from that moment the door is open again.

Sounds completely reasonable! Afterall you hospis are managing some of the busiest albergues of any Camino.
 
Time of past OR future Camino
2006 to date: Over 21 Caminos. See signature line
Depends on when you think that you will arrive. I was at Roncesvalles on the 16th May 2019 and I got a walk-in bed without problems. I took two days walking from SJPdP. On day one I walked to the statue of the Snow Virgin and caught the shuttle back to SJPdP then on day two I caught the shuttle back to the statue and walked from there.

The walk from the statue in the morning plus an unscripted off piste adventure (a story for another day) got me to Roncesvalles at 1:25pm (according to my Google Maps timeline). There was a long queue when I arrived and I was a little worried but I easily got a bed along with a lot of other people who arrived after me.

Of course this was my experience, on exactly the same day that you are planning. Your experience may be different but, please, don't let pre-Camino jitters get to you.

Even the pilgrims who arrived too late at Roncesvalles to get a bed there, still got a bed somewhere else and experienced an unexpected adventure while doing this.

I met one woman who had been unable to get a bed at Roncesvalles and she chose to walk on a short distance to an alternate albergue.

I have never met anyone who had to sleep outside.
I have seen pilgrims crying in the foyer because the beds were full, there were no beds ahead in the small villages, Zubiri was full, and their remaining option was to taxi to Pamplona.
 

Ianinam

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
CF 2013 / CP 2018
I have seen pilgrims crying in the foyer because the beds were full, there were no beds ahead in the small villages, Zubiri was full, and their remaining option was to taxi to Pamplona.

May and September are always the busiest months and yes, many people are very disappointed and sad when they cannot sleep in Roncesvalles. When you arrive early (fast walker and/or if you had an overnight in Orisson) you will probably be able to get a bed in these busy periods. But many times people arriving at 3 or 4 pm will have to walk on, or wait till the taxis arrive to bring them to other places. The taxis on the other hand cannot arrive earlier, as they first have to bring the schoolchildren from the schools to their houses in the villages in the neighbourhood during the afternoon.
 

Albertagirl

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Frances; Aragones; VdlP; Madrid-Invierno; Levante
As an experienced hospitalera myself, my post was intended to advise new pilgrims on the situation which they are likely to find at Roncesvalles at breakfast time. If I had known, I would certainly not have bought a breakfast ticket but would have planned to walk on. Of course, some pilgrilms may feel that any food first thing is better than none. I think that if I spent a night at Roncesvalles again I would bring some sort of snack in my pack and eat it with machine coffee before setting off in the morning. And I would certainly have a reservation somewhere for the next night.
 
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Anamiri

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2016, 2017, 2019 Camino Frances
I have seen pilgrims crying in the foyer because the beds were full, there were no beds ahead in the small villages, Zubiri was full, and their remaining option was to taxi to Pamplona.
Yes on our way back from dinner, people were still walking in and the albergue team was finding them lodgings and a taxi elsewhere.
 
Time of past OR future Camino
To Santiago and back (roads & paths; Tours; Francés; sea; roads & paths)
Yes on our way back from dinner, people were still walking in and the albergue team was finding them lodgings and a taxi elsewhere.
Good point: That a number of people who are 'doing this for the first time' arrive quite late in the day and even late in the evening at Roncesvalles.
 

cardifflad52

Active Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Sept 2015 Inglis Way , March 2022 Camino Frances
I'm arriving in Roncesvalles on 16th May and debating whether to pre book/pay for dinner and a bed at the Albergue.. Do you think this is advisable or d'you think I'd be ok to just to turn up? .. Also any idea if I can pay by cash?
You can go to their website and pay up front they do ask that you bring your own sleeping bag but after making enquires it's acceptable to bring just a sleeping bag liner ..but because of covid they have reduced their capacity
 

trecile

Moderator
Staff member
Time of past OR future Camino
PAST - Francés, Norte, Salvador, Portuguese
No, Aterpea (the big albergue) opens next Friday March 4th and we can use now full capacity.
The website still says 50% capacity. I assume that will change soon?

Siguiendo las recomendaciones sanitarias para este tipo de establecimientos, el aforo del albergue de Roncesvalles se verá reducido al 50% aproximadamente, asignando las camas de forma que se mantenga la distancia de seguridad entre un peregrino y otro.

It also states that a Covid pass is mandatory.

 
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Jamieb

Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2019
We did the dinner and breakfast in summer 2019 and if I walk again I would do the same. For me it was the convenience. We were dead tired upon arrival and in no shape to go looking for a meal - the meal wasn't something spectacular but it was convenient and easy after what my mom and I thought was a long and difficult day. Breakfast was ok, we included it just because of the unknown. We didn't want to start the day hungry.
 

davebugg

A Pilgrimage is time I spend praying with my feet
Time of past OR future Camino
2019
As far as breakfast, I know there is a town (Burguete, I think) that is pretty close and I may be able to eat breakfast and have coffee there ... but if they are not open. Ha. I love my coffee in the morning. So should I get breakfast at Roncesvalles hostel? Does anyone know how early they serve breakfast?

There is a nice vending machine room at the alburgue that can provide a quick breakfast snack - to give your blood sugar a boost - to take with you on the way to Burguete. In the three times staying at the the alburgue and then leaving before 7am, I always found a breakfast of tortilla de patatas waiting with my name on it in Burguete. :)
 

Milinkoto

New Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Camino Frances -spring/fall/winter 2017
We usually leave around 6 a.m. as we try to avoid the midday heat, and 7 a.m. is too late for us.
6 a.m. is too early for breakfast for us as well, as we don't feel like eating so early, so Burguete is a very good option, around 35 min. normal walking speed; Espinal is a good option as well, around 1h30-40min. from Roncesvalles.
 

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