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Seven Days at a Time

#1
Hello all -

I am walking seven days of the camino -- via el camino frances -- in september, and hope to do so every september that follows until completion. Because I must break the trip up so much, I want to start at the very beginning, but need to also consider how long it will take to get to and from the starting point. I will have ten days from landing to take off.

Given this suggestion, does anyone have advice on the relative merits of starting at St. Jean versus Roncesvalles? I am inclined to start at St. Jean, the very beginning for me as I am unable to walk from my door toward the camino, but I'm not sure whether my travel constraints make this a wise choice.

Additionally, if I want to start in St. Jean, I know I will not get very far. Would it make more sense to fly into France (and if so, to where) than to fly into Madrid, or even Pamplona?

Thank you.
 

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marktqm

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2006)
#2
Kodiak,

Start from SJPP, since you are not in a hurry to get to Santiago anyway. You don't want to torture yourself asking "what if" later. You'll enjoy the Route Napoleon.

My personal preference would be to fly into Bilbao then take the bus to the border and train to SJPP.

Mark
 

jeff001

Active Member
#3
It would help to know where you are coming from. Assuming it is North America I would suggest flying to Biarritz via Paris. From there you can catch a local bus or taxi to Bayonne and take the train from there to SJPdP. If your connections work you get to SJ the same day you arrive in Paris.
 
#4
I did part I of my Camino this past May. I flew into Paris & took an AirFrance flight to Biarritz. Check the AirFrance website, because they have many flights from Orly & CDG, & it's possible to get this fare for just under $100US.

How far you get depends upon how far you walk each day. You should make Estella at least, perhaps Los Arcos.

Also, if you are on the Camino Sept. 12, please consider participating in the photo project. :)

Kelly
 

sillydoll

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
2002 CF: 2004 from Paris: 2006 VF: 2007 CF: 2009 Aragones, Ingles, Finisterre: 2011 X 2 on CF: 2013 'Caracoles': 2014 CF and Ingles 'Caracoles":2015 Logrono-Burgos (Hospitalero San Anton): 2016 La Douay to Aosta/San Gimignano to Rome:
#5
Hello Kodiak,
At least you WILL finish the camino by doing 7 days each year!
On the Tro Breiz pilgrimage (in Brittany) whoever does not make the +500km pilgrimage at least once in his lifetime is condemned to make it after death, advancing only by the length of his coffin each 7 years.

http://www.tro-breiz.com/
 

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#7
Thanks, everyone, for the wonderfully helpful advice. I had been pretty set on flying into Pamplona, but now am giving serious consideration to flying into Paris and taking the route to SJPP that Kelly and Jeff suggest.
And I think you're right, Mark, why always wonder when I'm in no rush?

The last consideration is whether it will be significantly more difficult -- monetarily or timewise -- to get back to Paris to fly home than it would be to get back to Pamplona or Madrid. Unfortunately, costs don't allow me to fly into one airport and out of another. And yes, I will be flying from/returning to North America. Any thoughts on that?

(By the way, I am also now considering an oversized coffin.)
 
#8
Kodiak, what costs are keeping you from flying into Paris & out of Madrid? That's how I did it. After I stopped walking, I spent 2 days in San Sebastian & 2 in Pamplona, & took the train to Madrid. It wasn't too much more (if any) to get an "open jaw" ticket.

Kelly
 
#9
We are flying to Paris, and then taking the train to Bayonne, and from there a direct local train to SJPP.
You can find a €23 fare on the TGV at the SNCF site.
It may necessitate, as in our case, an overnight in Paris, but then that's not so bad! There are certainly worse predicaments.

We are happy with this plan, and you may want to consider it.

Buen camino!
 
#10
Kelly and other advisors --

You were right. I finally confirmed my reservations and will be flying into Bordeaux and out of Madrid. It looks like we can take a train directly from Bordeaux to St. Jean. Thank you for all of your help.

Buen camino!

Kodiak
 

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