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Safety in September/October?


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I've been planning a route from St Jean Pied du Port to Santiago for weeks now, but my parents have rather put a brake on the idea... Basically they're very worried about safety along the route as I would be going on my own, staying at refugios and being out in the countryside, without anyone else around...

What is the route like at that kind of time of year for a young woman on her own? Are there many people to meet up with and walk with in groups?

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Hi Kara,
I remember your earlier posts and wondered how you were getting on with your busy schedule and plans to do the camino.
Last year the stats for pilgrims getting the compostela in September and October were: SEPTEMBER 12 168 and OCTOBER 6 873
(This is almost a mirror of the numbers that got the compostela in May and June - MAY 9 310, JUNE 12 620)
These numbers do not include the pilgrims who did not state a religious reason for walking the camino, nor those who did not complete the last 100kms.
I haven't walked at that time of the year but from my experience you are very rarely alone on the camino and can either choose to walk with other pilgrims or not.
I hope it works out for you.
Safety in september/october

Hi !

I wonder about the same thing... On my first week on the Camino, two girls I met during the days both had had their individually bad experience towards men when they were alone. One of them along the road, and one in an albergue. None of the men were pligrims, but locals. One of them even a hospitalero.

I am walking in september/october as well, and alone. Going from Logroño around 3rd of september. I desided to do it in spite of their misfortune. I guess I will meet people along the way. A lot of people are going alone, both men and women, and my experience, after the first week, is that it is very easy to get company along the way, and I get it will be even easier the closer I get to Santiago.

Let me know if you will be in the same area at the same time I will be, and we could keep company for a while if you would like.

Anyway, during to this forum, it doesn't seem like a big problem being on your own as a woman along el Camino. I still think the topic is important to talk about, because it can ruin the experience if one feel afraid or unsecure while walking.

Safe journey, and enjoy !!!!

Liv :D
I've had the same question from a number of people ... I point out that Spain's crime rate is a lot lower than ours here in Los Angeles County.
Karalily said:
I've been planning a route from St Jean Pied du Port to Santiago for weeks now, but my parents have rather put a brake on the idea... Basically they're very worried about safety along the route as I would be going on my own, staying at refugios and being out in the countryside, without anyone else around...

What is the route like at that kind of time of year for a young woman on her own? Are there many people to meet up with and walk with in groups?

Hi Kara! don't worry I am alone too,but I am an old Lady {younge at heart} and will be out there at the same time.I did walk in may/o3 and had no problems.Maybe we will see you then. Harriet
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If your parents are really worried about going alone on the Camino, why not see if a friend or someone you know from home would be interested in going along with you? If not, there are always people looking to walk with someone, so I don't think it would be a problem once you got on the Camino.

And if you end you walking alone, remember, you do have a walking stick :) .
Of course parents are always concerned and it is a good thing !

I walked StJPDP to Burgos in Sep 05 and I have met two or three women walking alone. I have walked with one of them (a Brazilian) several kilometers, meeting her from time to time. As you meet a lot of people in the refuges, very seldom have I seen people leaving alone in the morning.

During the day you you always come across someone's path, you walk awhile together, you separate, you meet somebody else, you stop for lunch where you meet other pilgrims. Solitude is not really easy to experience on the Camino Francès !

Just to say that, at least from what I experienced, you always meet other pilgrims on the Camino. You may be alone at times, but if you so wish; not for long though.

From what I have seen your parents should not be overly concerned. Believe it or not, my wife and I are 64 and she is worried when I leave !!! :wink:

I will be completing my camino this Sep from Burgos. Hope we will meet and walk a bit together Karalily.
sleeping with 100's of others

just returned and DON't worry, you won't be alone if you don't want to me. my mom even thou i am 49 was abit worried, but when i wrote and said in Roncavelles i slept with 100 other people, hm... guess i am not alone. there was only about 4 days when i decided to walk on my own, that was may/june. summer no problem, i am sure you would want to get rid of people. i can't imagine hiking in the summer.
anway i did hear afew stories it was is Estrella, when a single girl was approached. go with love and amazing things happen.

I too share your/your parents concern... but have decided to go for it. Flying into Biarritz around 17th September.... let me know if timing works for starting off together... :)
camino sept/oct


i'm a young 40ish female who wants to do the camino around late sept to Oct. If you haven't gone, perhaps we can do it together. i am also worried about doing it on my own. i have travelled solo many times all over the world but i'm a little hesistance doing the walk on my own. unfortunately, all my friends are tied up with their jobs and/or families.

do let me know.

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I assume since you are still dependent on your parents, since you used the word brakes. Brakes indicates to me that it is their car and they are driving. It's just a metaphor.
In any event I have done the Camino and I am 60 years old and planning to do it again August 29. If my daughter age 34 asked me if I thought she should do the camino I would give her advice, since she lives on her own.
If she were 16 and living at home I would put the same brakes on, since she was not independent or worldly.
The truth is the Camino is safe for you, but the question is how do you handle yourself.
Ask yourself do I have enough experience/confidence to try something new for an extended period of time and not have any support from friends or family. If the answer is yes, come along. If the answer is no, try something closer to home or a shorter period of time.

I hope this helps you chose. There is plenty of time to do the Camino, it will be there in another 100 years.
Hola Karalily
I am doing the Camino on my own September/October (departing SJPP around 12/13 Sept). I'm 38 and never done anything like this before. Did think about finding someone to walk with, but after talking to my sister who has travelled a lot on her own (Australia, New Zealand, Thailand, Bali, Figi, Mayasia) I decided that I'd get a better experience on my own. It would force me to meet new people, boost my confidence and allow me to follow my own schedule. My sister told me that as long as you are sensible, don't take unecessary risks and follow advice of people you meet along the way you can't really go wrong.
I've set up a Blog so my friends and family can follow my progress - someting that my Mother is especially happy about - but having said that, she isn't too worried as she's been through it all before with my sister.
What ever you decide to do - go with someone or don't - you will have an amazing adventure, I know I certainly intend to!
Buen camino
Hambani kahle (Go well!)
Sarah :D

I leave on Wednesday, and get to Biarritz on Friday, and onto SJPP after then. Last year I did a fair bit of solo bike travel in west/central/east Africa. Family and friends assumed I'd be pillaged/abused/shot/killed/etc. I probably would have thought the same, if I'd sat down and thought about it. It unfolded as one of the most 're-establishing faith in human beings' things that's happened to me. Out there, in every day life, most people are mostly good.

Once I got going, maybe a month in (it's all relative) I felt this huge weight lifting from my shoulders. I just felt like I belonged, not to anywhere in particular but just to everywhere. We can quite easily tune ourselves into different environments, you learn to get a feel for situations and people. If the situation or people are bad, just move along or join up with someone for a while. I think most of us now live in an overbearing environment where our instincts are made to feel redundant. Like Sarah says, you just need to be sensible in your approach and be aware of your surroundings. Not putting yourself into dangerous situations is as much about not going on a mountain/hill in a lightening storm, as it is about not being alone with a male you don't trust. I'm making the assumption that's one common cause of safety concerns.

You could just give yourself the first section to see how you feel. There are plenty of places you can opt-out if you don't feel right. Or you could just sight-see until a like-minded soul comes along you feel comfortable walking with.

have a good one, maybe see on the road...

hi everyone,

I walked the Camino in 2001 from France into Santiago and had absolutely no problems. I was walking alone (although you never have to be alone - there are always others around, plus you tend to meet people along the way and they become constant companions if you want them to be).

I'll be going again in September/October for my second go at it. See you all there!

Susanne from Santa Barbara
Hi everyone,

I start walking my camino at 21 september in St. Jean PDP, want to walk all the way to Santiago, hope to arrive at the end of october, or maybe first week of november.
I'm a woman of 48 and walking alone . First time for me doing this!
Susanne, Karalily, Sarah, and others: maybe we''ll meet somewhere and walk together for a while.........
have a good time!

E ultreya e sus eja
Deus adjuva nos

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