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Sleeping outside?


New Member
Hi. Our group will start it's pilgrimage in about a week. We are a few old and very good friends, we are used to hiking and camping together so we were wondering how would be if we'd spend a few nights sleeping & camping under the open skies. We are all aware of the fact that Camino is the people and the idea is not of isolating from the other pilgrims, but to have sometimes a few moments like we are used to have: all together somewhere in the middle of nature. But giving the circumstances the main problem would be the personal hygiene, which we intend to take good care of :wink: . We are used to camp and see no problem in using springs & rivers for bathing, we are not dependent on the so called civilization but we still want to take a bath after a walking day in the sun.

This is our main concern and we kindly ask for your advice. How often does the route cross some natural water source? How odd would be to take this option? Would it be possible to put stamps on our pilgrimage passports in this situation? Did anyone tried this option as well? And so on...
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Year of past OR future Camino
2002, Toulouse/Aragon 2005, Cami S Jaume/Aragon 2007/9, Mont Saint Michel/Norte/Vadiniense 2011, Norte/Primitivo 2013, Norte/Primitivo 2014. Norte 2015, Cami S Jaume/Castellano-Aragonese 2016
I can only think of about a half dozen places where this might be possible-- there is a slow-moving stream near Tardajos, the Canal de Castilla near Fromista, the Rio Esla by Mansilla las Mulas, Hospital de Orbigo, and the river just after San Justo de la Vega. In a month's walking, that really would not be enough.

It is important to remember that much of Spain is arid and free-flowing water is confined to irrigation ditches-- where the water is not always the best quality and can have quite a bit of chemical runoff from fertilizers.

Other veterans of the Camino may have different opinions on this, but I would suggest that you re-examine your approach-- perhaps albergues or hostales ever second day?? It is our role to adapt ourselves to the Camino and its environment, not the Camino to us.


New Member
Hi and thank you very much for your suggestions, oursonpolaire. It is better having a general idea before leaving and your information is very useful.

First of all I would like to mention we are all nature lovers which includes a higher awareness of the environmental problems. And no, we don't intend spoiling the waters :wink: .

We are also opened to everything the Camino is going to teach us and have no preconceptions nor fixed ideas about what we are going to find there. We'd just love to spend some nights under the open skies sometimes; not in an attempt to isolate ourselves from the other pilgrims but to feel The Earth and The Sky directly. Simple and respectful for everything around.

All the best,

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