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So, what progress generally on allowing camping on Caminos .....

Undermanager

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Madrid (x2)
VDLP
Salvador
Primitivo
Finisterra / Muxia
Lana
Any gentle, encouraging words or support from central government to regional governments? Any gentle, encouraging words or support to towns, villages or albergues from regional governments? Any towns, villages or albergues announced anything which might be considered 'progress' on the issue of camping .... ?
 
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Albert_Hadacek

Young Pilgrim
Year of past OR future Camino
Portugues - 2015
Norte - 2016, 2020
Frances - 2018
Last year in July, when we went on the Camino Norte + Primitivo, we took a light tent and mat. I come from the Czech Republic, which is a country of camping, sleeping outside is legal (unless you are in a natural park) here even outside of designated camps, it has been a cultural thing that emerged during the dark times of socialism between 1948-1989 as people could be out of sight and sing American country songs. So, it is unthinkable that someone would call police on people camping in the nature even if it was in an ilegal spot these days, unless they do something naughty.The conditions here are perfect for camping, we have a great net of lakes, a lot of the land is still controlled by the state, so it is maintained, since we are young we learn how to make fire responsibly etc...

Now back to Spain, it was actually nearly impossible to find a place to camp. I am not even talking about having access to some natural source of water. A lot of land in Spain is private and kept unmaintained. Throughout the 500km we saw just a couple of places that would be suitable for some form of camping, yet we usually passed them at a wrong time. We ended up sleeping outside only once near a beach, as it was around 8PM and the albergues and hotels within reasonable distance were full.

So even if camping will become fully legal, the conditions will be an obstacle. I have walked over 1700km on different caminos and as an avid wild camper I just have this reflex of checking if a spot is suitable, and yet I have not found many suitable places for camping. Last week we went for a weekend in nature with 3 close friends to a completely new area and within 10 minutes we found a great spot for camping with source of water so we can filter it for drinking and cooking. That will always be hard on the camino as you want to stay near the route.
 

LTfit

Veteran Member
This issue came up numerous times last year during the severe lockdown in Spain and later on when it opened up for Europeans in the summer (I was running an albergue at that time). To tell you the truth Spain as well as the rest of us in Europe are more concerned with taking care of the third wave and getting people vaccinated than discussing how we can accommodate pilgrims who may wish to camp. Reality is such that businesses have closed, some have changed hands and some are for sale. Most municipal and parochial albergues were closed for all of 2020, there are few to no hospitalero trainings scheduled for 2021 and who knows when these albergue will open up in 2021. Private albergues have started opening up already but they would rather have you to stay with them than camp ;)
 

MarkyD

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Camino Francés 31/08/2018 - 20/10/2018
Last year in July, when we went on the Camino Norte + Primitivo, we took a light tent and mat. I come from the Czech Republic, which is a country of camping, sleeping outside is legal (unless you are in a natural park) here even outside of designated camps, it has been a cultural thing that emerged during the dark times of socialism between 1948-1989 as people could be out of sight and sing American country songs. So, it is unthinkable that someone would call police on people camping in the nature even if it was in an ilegal spot these days, unless they do something naughty.The conditions here are perfect for camping, we have a great net of lakes, a lot of the land is still controlled by the state, so it is maintained, since we are young we learn how to make fire responsibly etc...

Now back to Spain, it was actually nearly impossible to find a place to camp. I am not even talking about having access to some natural source of water. A lot of land in Spain is private and kept unmaintained. Throughout the 500km we saw just a couple of places that would be suitable for some form of camping, yet we usually passed them at a wrong time. We ended up sleeping outside only once near a beach, as it was around 8PM and the albergues and hotels within reasonable distance were full.

So even if camping will become fully legal, the conditions will be an obstacle. I have walked over 1700km on different caminos and as an avid wild camper I just have this reflex of checking if a spot is suitable, and yet I have not found many suitable places for camping. Last week we went for a weekend in nature with 3 close friends to a completely new area and within 10 minutes we found a great spot for camping with source of water so we can filter it for drinking and cooking. That will always be hard on the camino as you want to stay near the route.
I think there are three main types of camping scenarios:

1. Official campsite camping, which is legal in Spain, but there is very little of it on Camino routes. It is mainly aimed at holiday campers rather than through-hikers. These would be in large camping and caravan parks, with lots of facilities and therefore would not be cheap.

2. Camping on land with permission of the land owner, which might be available at some albergues where they have facilities for pitching tents. This will normally incur a small charge, but you have the benefit of access to showers, toilets, laundry at the albergue. It's worth phoning ahead to an albergue to ask about availability and get permission and reservation in advance.

3. The other is "wild camping" (aka stealth camping), similar to what you refer to in the Czech Republic, which really sounds great. Officially this is still illegal in Spain, partly due to fears over forest fires. It can be done, some people do it, but the Spanish authorities don't support this. The Civil Guard will either move you on, arrest or fine you; depending on where you are camping and what attitude you have or they have. Some locals near villages might help you find a suitable place to camp, but generally they won't want to risk getting in trouble themselves, or be accused of not directing pilgrim walkers to established camino accommodation in the area.

In conclusion, Spain is a long long way off approving camping of this type. The day it does become approved it will likely require permits and reporting via an app or to local police station. Certainly during Covid-19 times, which are likely to last a few more years, I can't see any willingness for any local authority to approve/permit/turn a blind eye (hacer la vista gorda) to free camping for through-hikers. If you are up a mountain and you stay overnight due to weather or fatigue, then that would be entirely different.
 
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Stephan the Painter

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Frances(2020)
@Undermanager @MarkyD ,
There is an Airbnb style app for camping in Europe called Campspace . They seem to list some locations in Spain already, so apparently it’s legal to rent out your backyard in the same manner you might rent out a spare bedroom.

It seems to me this would be a great way for Camino locals to add to their income and provide a valuable service. Obviously you wouldn’t be allowed to set up a real campsite, but maybe just one or two spots, and you would have to provide access to plumbing.

It’s a dutch start up:
 
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alexwalker

Forever Pilgrim
Year of past OR future Camino
(2009): Camino Frances
(2011): Sevilla-Salamanca, VdlP
(2012): Salamanca-SdC, VdlP
(2014): SJpdP-Astorga
(2015): Astorga-SdC
(2016) May Pamplona-Moratinos; Sept.:Burgos-SdC
(2016): August/Sept: Camino San Olav (Burgos-Covarubbias), Burgos-Sarria
(2017): May: Portuguese; Sept: Pamplona-SdC
I am very happy with the Spanish strict rules for wild camping. I can only imagine (reluctantly) the amount of garbage, toilet paper & sh*t that would be floating around if wildcmping was allowed.

Pay your fees to the albergues for staying safe and contribute to a clean, healthy Camino environment (and much needed business), IMHO.
 

Undermanager

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Madrid (x2)
VDLP
Salvador
Primitivo
Finisterra / Muxia
Lana
"Pay your fees to the albergues for staying safe ...."

That is the issue. Many simply do not envisage feeling safe sharing with strangers in an albergue for a long time to come. This is why camping along routes is something many want taken far more seriously than it appears to have been done. Actions at all levels in a timely, planned manner to make it happen when routes are available is the best way forward for everyone.
 

Peter Fransiscus

Be a Rainbow in someone else's cloud.
Year of past OR future Camino
All that we are is the result of what we have thought.
That is the issue. Many simply do not envisage feeling safe sharing with strangers in an albergue for a long time to come.
In my honest opinion it's not a issue.
How come people to Spain , most off them take a plain full with strangers.
What's the difference????
 
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Stephan the Painter

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Frances(2020)
In my honest opinion it's not a issue.
How come people to Spain , most off them take a plain full with strangers.
What's the difference????
Well the plane trip is only two times. Two periods of extensive exposure, currently with masks required to be worn. You’re talking about 35 nights on the Camino Frances, and you’re not going to be able to keep a mask on when you’re sleeping.

But I definitely don’t think wild camping is a good idea. There’s way too many people and many people behave irresponsibly.
 

alexwalker

Forever Pilgrim
Year of past OR future Camino
(2009): Camino Frances
(2011): Sevilla-Salamanca, VdlP
(2012): Salamanca-SdC, VdlP
(2014): SJpdP-Astorga
(2015): Astorga-SdC
(2016) May Pamplona-Moratinos; Sept.:Burgos-SdC
(2016): August/Sept: Camino San Olav (Burgos-Covarubbias), Burgos-Sarria
(2017): May: Portuguese; Sept: Pamplona-SdC
"Pay your fees to the albergues for staying safe ...."

That is the issue. Many simply do not envisage feeling safe sharing with strangers in an albergue for a long time to come. This is why camping along routes is something many want taken far more seriously than it appears to have been done. Actions at all levels in a timely, planned manner to make it happen when routes are available is the best way forward for everyone.
Not feeling safe? Give me a break. You sit on planes, trains, buses etc.with a bunch of a
strangers in order to travel to a walk in the wild, and you are then all of a sudden "not safe" in the near of a few decent pilgrims?

Furthermore, if you used an authorized camping site, all would be fine, but you insist on camping on another person' land, without permission, without any facilites at all, so all your cooking, sleeping & inevitably toilet activities will be visibly left behind you for us all to see?

FYI: I live in a country where where wild camping is not only allowed, but cherised. Lately, the trails after wildcampers are really beginning to set their "marks" in our landscapes, due to ignorance, lazyness, etc. The worst are visiting foreigners...
 
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C clearly

Moderator
Staff member
Year of past OR future Camino
2021
Any gentle, encouraging words or support from central government to regional governments? Any gentle, encouraging words or support to towns, villages or albergues from regional governments? Any towns, villages or albergues announced anything which might be considered 'progress' on the issue of camping .... ?
Apparently not, based on the posts so far.

If anyone has any new information, please post it. Help keep the thread open by not going into the same-old same-old arguments about camping-or-not and personal perceptions of Covid risk.
 

Undermanager

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Madrid (x2)
VDLP
Salvador
Primitivo
Finisterra / Muxia
Lana
Totally agree. Those who are happy can stay in albergues and that's fine if they are comfortable with that. Some of us keen to explore safer options to doing Caminos again would benefit from updates on where the camping conversation started a year ago on both a macro level and a local one have gone.

It's really all about making sure that everyone's needs are met, rational in some eyes or not, and making sure as much money as possible can once again be pumped into all Spanish stakeholder businesses by pilgrims along the different Caminos. I'm just surprised there isn't a more energetic conversation going on at different levels in Spain, with action.
 

alexwalker

Forever Pilgrim
Year of past OR future Camino
(2009): Camino Frances
(2011): Sevilla-Salamanca, VdlP
(2012): Salamanca-SdC, VdlP
(2014): SJpdP-Astorga
(2015): Astorga-SdC
(2016) May Pamplona-Moratinos; Sept.:Burgos-SdC
(2016): August/Sept: Camino San Olav (Burgos-Covarubbias), Burgos-Sarria
(2017): May: Portuguese; Sept: Pamplona-SdC
Here is recent article in French re ad hoc camping/walking bivouac randonnees in the French Pyrénées which might give you some helpful tips in general.
Very interesting article, and explains a lot about the problems of wildcamping.
 
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domigee

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2020? Looks like.... nowhere! 😁
All I know about camping in Spain (apart from proper camping sites which as mentioned above are few and far between on the Camino!)* is asking an albergue with a garden if you can pitch your tent. You still have to pay but you can share the facilities (shower etc).
* I only remember two, one near Roncesvalles and the other one near Santiago.
 

DreamHiker2

DreamHiker2
Year of past OR future Camino
2022
All I know about camping in Spain (apart from proper camping sites which as mentioned above are few and far between on the Camino!)* is asking an albergue with a garden if you can pitch your tent. You still have to pay but you can share the facilities (shower etc).
* I only remember two, one near Roncesvalles and the other one near Santiago.
I think this is a great idea to camp where albergues have room and of course pay a fee with access during the night to their bathrooms is the way to go and a win/win for both pilgrim & hospitalero if it is possible. Not all hikers who camp are ignorant of the "leave no trace" policy. One thing I must mention is that my last camino in 2017, I took doggy bags to leave no trace but when I ran out I was unable to purchase any anywhere - do they sell them & if so where?
 

LTfit

Veteran Member
"Pay your fees to the albergues for staying safe ...."

That is the issue. Many simply do not envisage feeling safe sharing with strangers in an albergue for a long time to come. This is why camping along routes is something many want taken far more seriously than it appears to have been done. Actions at all levels in a timely, planned manner to make it happen when routes are available is the best way forward for everyone.

My suggestion would then be to go somewhere where you do feel safe rather than expect Spain to accommodate your need to camp along the Camino. The Camino is not a thru hike, it is a pilgrimage from town to town. There are limitless other places with good camping facilities.

And regarding safety, albergues must follow Covid safety guidelines governing hygiene and limited occupancy which require(d) an investment above and beyond their usual fixed costs. IMHO it would be sad to see more albergues closing and campgrounds popping up along the Camino.
 
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DreamHiker2

DreamHiker2
Year of past OR future Camino
2022
My suggestion would then be to go somewhere where you do feel safe rather than expect Spain to accommodate your need to camp along the Camino. The Camino is not a thru hike, it is a pilgrimage from town to town. There are limitless other places with good camping facilities.

And regarding safety, albergues must follow Covid safety guidelines governing hygiene and limited occupancy which require(d) an investment above and beyond their usual fixed costs. IMHO it would be sad to see more albergues closing and campgrounds popping up along the Camino.
I would be more than happy to pay the full Albergue fees ( I wouldn't think to suggest otherwise) and just in times of covid stay in a tent as well BUT I have to admit I am really looking forward to staying a couples room with my hubby in your new Albergue - it's marked on my list and we are hoping to see you in 2021.
 

LTfit

Veteran Member
I would be more than happy to pay the full Albergue fees ( I wouldn't think to suggest otherwise) and just in times of covid stay in a tent as well BUT I have to admit I am really looking forward to staying a couples room with my hubby in your new Albergue - it's marked on my list and we are hoping to see you in 2021.
Thanks for your comment. I am actually back in The Netherlands but the albergue is opening as is now run by a Dutch couple.
 

Undermanager

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Madrid (x2)
VDLP
Salvador
Primitivo
Finisterra / Muxia
Lana
I'm sure all of us are looking forward to staying in albergues again but is it reasonable to expect everyone to be comfortable with staying in albergues for the foreseeable or to expect everything to just carry on as before for a very long time to come? It's all about making adaptions to cope with the new situation on all parts. If caminos and the businesses along them are going to thrive in the longer term, they need to survive in the shorter and medium term one. That means governments, councils, albergues and anyone else with a vested interest taking a look at what can be done to encourage all and asunder to return when it does become possible again, and then making it happen. Camping isn't the answer for everyone, but for a segment, it is. It doesn't take a huge reorganisation of national infrastructure to allow or facilitate camping along the Ways, just a realisation that sadly, things aren't going to be the same again for a while, much as we'd like it to be, so some tweaks would be prudent. What I'm slightly puzzled by, is that none seem forthcoming by anyone at any level, or if they are, they've been remarkably well hidden.
 

LTfit

Veteran Member
It doesn't take a huge reorganisation of national infrastructure to allow or facilitate camping along the Ways, just a realisation that sadly, things aren't going to be the same again for a while, much as we'd like it to be, so some tweaks would be prudent. What I'm slightly puzzled by, is that none seem forthcoming by anyone at any level, or if they are, they've been remarkably well hidden.
You may have never dealt with Spanish burocracy 😉. I am being realistic when I say that I don't see this happening. The various Caminos run through many autonomous regions (there are 17!), each with their own president and government. Try getting them to agree on anything. A State of Alarm was necessary to combat Covid and believe me, the regional governments were not happy with Madrid.

Given the above (and the current situation in the various autonomous regions) it doesn't puzzle me in the least that camping along the Camino is not on their agenda.
 
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natefaith

Moderator
Staff member
Year of past OR future Camino
2009
What I'm slightly puzzled by, is that none seem forthcoming by anyone at any level, or if they are, they've been remarkably well hidden.

Since the official word is that wild camping isn't allowed, they probably don't feel the need to change that for now. If they do change a rule, the Spanish are pretty quick to publish it. Heck, the government even has to announce beforehand when they're about to do seat-belt or drunk-driving traffic checks. 🙃
 

trecile

Camino Addict
Year of past OR future Camino
Francés (2016 & 2017), Norte (2018), Francés-Salvador-Norte (2019), Portuguese (2019)
I also don't see the many government entities changing the rules for what should be a temporary situation. (temporary as in a year or so, not just a couple of months) Then there is the issue that much (most?) of the land that people would be camping on is privately owned. Extending Covid protocols inside albergues, such as limiting the number of beds in use is more likely to occur. I know that there are a lot of people who like to camp, but perhaps a more camping friendly destination would be more suitable.

Looking at this from a different perspective - I'm not interested in camping, but I would love to do some of the long distance trails in the US. However, I certainly don't expect refugio type accommodations or even campsites with bathroom facilities to pop up to meet my needs, which means that those trails will remain day hikes for me. The Pacific Crest and Appalachian trails are what they are, and the Camino is what it is.
 

Peter Fransiscus

Be a Rainbow in someone else's cloud.
Year of past OR future Camino
All that we are is the result of what we have thought.
What I'm slightly puzzled by, is that none seem forthcoming by anyone at any level, or if they are, they've been remarkably well hidden.
You kow by now that wild camping is not allowed in Spain but I know three parts off Spain where you can .
They are,
In the autonomous region of Aragón it is allowed to camp in the wild from an altitude of 1,500 meters in mountains such as the Pyrenees, provided you meet the criteria and requirements. In Catalonia, camping is allowed from an altitude of 2,000 meters, while in the Picos de Europa this is from 1,600 meters.
 

domigee

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2020? Looks like.... nowhere! 😁
I know that there are a lot of people who like to camp, but perhaps a more camping friendly destination would be more suitable.
Absolutely. I love camping but.... never thought Spain was suitable, certainly not on the Caminos...
And (but that’s probably just me) when you think of the damage (using the path as toilets, picking fruit when passing by, dropping litter, writing graffiti...) caused in ‘normal’ times by pilgrims - just walkers! - I shudder when I think of the same lot wild camping too 😱
 

RemysMimi

Hooked on the Camino!!
Year of past OR future Camino
Frances (2018)
Frances or Portuguese (2020)
Totally agree. Those who are happy can stay in albergues and that's fine if they are comfortable with that. Some of us keen to explore safer options to doing Caminos again would benefit from updates on where the camping conversation started a year ago on both a macro level and a local one have gone.

It's really all about making sure that everyone's needs are met, rational in some eyes or not, and making sure as much money as possible can once again be pumped into all Spanish stakeholder businesses by pilgrims along the different Caminos. I'm just surprised there isn't a more energetic conversation going on at different levels in Spain, with action.
I don't think everyone's "NEEDS" will ever be met. One of my "needs" would be to not see the mess that people already leave behind, let alone if they were allowed to wild camp along the routes.
 
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alexwalker

Forever Pilgrim
Year of past OR future Camino
(2009): Camino Frances
(2011): Sevilla-Salamanca, VdlP
(2012): Salamanca-SdC, VdlP
(2014): SJpdP-Astorga
(2015): Astorga-SdC
(2016) May Pamplona-Moratinos; Sept.:Burgos-SdC
(2016): August/Sept: Camino San Olav (Burgos-Covarubbias), Burgos-Sarria
(2017): May: Portuguese; Sept: Pamplona-SdC
It's really all about making sure that everyone's needs are met, rational in some eyes or not, and making sure as much money as possible can once again be pumped into all Spanish stakeholder businesses by pilgrims along the different Caminos.
Wild camping is surely extremely counterproductive to supporting the Camino economy. It is a contradiction. You deprive albergue owners, who often struggle to make ends meet by their offer to us pilgrims, of a mere ca. 10 Euros for their offer of a bed, restrooms, heat, kitchen services, maybe a cheap communal dinner at a welcoming price, wine included, socializing, comfort in a house, & more, to you. All for a mere nominal fee, which no hostal/hotel or others can compete with.

As for "everyone's needs", the needs (economy) of our Spanish helpers (hospitaleros/as, bar owners, cafes, locals helping with directions (not to mention interesting conversations & them passing local knowledge), tienda owners (small food stores), & much much more) along the Caminos throughout all of Spain, are much more important than some foreign pilgrim's "needs", IMHO. We should be thankful to them for letting us in.

Edit: Actually, we pilgrims pay big money to travel, sometimes halfway around the world, in order to experience a wonderful walk in sunny Spain, with all spirituality & lifechanging reflection it may bring to us, for free. That we can afford. And then we won't use the cheap services we are offered, by people who really need their income from us, in order to save us a buck or two. Getting irritated here now, so will quit writing...
 
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Undermanager

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Madrid (x2)
VDLP
Salvador
Primitivo
Finisterra / Muxia
Lana
"Wild camping"

I've not mentioned wild camping. It's about asking stakeholders to at least discuss providing camping facilities and making allowances along the Ways in a Covid world, so that responsible not wild camping can happen.

"by people who really need their income, in order to save us a buck or two."

I really don't understand that comment. Where has saving money been mentioned? It's about discussing this issue maturely and unemotionally as many have raised it, then dealing with and hopefully adapting shared accommodation and providing options in a Covid world that none of us wanted. Things cannot just be the same when international travel to Spain returns, just because we all want it to be. Is change to the way Camino accommodation and facilities organised, run and used somehow sacrosanct and not allowed to be discussed, to see if tweaks might help? Covid is very dangerous, especially to the older demographic, and without adaptations, we could see resurgences, more spikes, more lockdowns etc etc. Conversations really are needed, but they appear to me anyway, to be severely lacking.

You seem to be coming up with assumptions no one has mentioned, then winding yourself up into a tizzie over them 😁. But like you, I think it's time to bow out of this one!
 
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trecile

Camino Addict
Year of past OR future Camino
Francés (2016 & 2017), Norte (2018), Francés-Salvador-Norte (2019), Portuguese (2019)
I've not mentioned wild camping. It's about asking stakeholders to at least discuss providing camping facilities and making allowances along the Ways in a Covid world, so that responsible not wild camping can happen.
I'm not sure exactly what you are envisaging. It sounds like you want new camping areas with sanitary facilities all along the 800 km of the Camino Francés, which is under multiple local and regional jurisdictions, and possibly other Camino routes? And you want them available within the next few months?

The concept of an app like @Stephan the Painter mentioned sounds interesting, but it would be years before it's built out enough to allow someone to be able to rely on it to find a camping spot every night while on the Camino.
 

Bristle Boy

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2022
I have watched this thread with interest and I hope you guys can develop it a little.
I may be wrong but I think the issue is one of communal sleeping arrangements and sanitary provisions. This is during a time when the business model has been broken by a virus and how there is a wish, by some, to explore the alternatives.
With an open mind on the issue I am sure a solution can be found.
 

Marc S.

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Since 2012: CF, CdN, CP, Salvador, Aragones, Via Regia, Elisabethpfad, Jakobsweg NRW, Jakibspaad.
With an open mind on the issue I am sure a solution can be found.

I have also watched this thread with interest. Trying to approach this from a practical level (as I have no influence on what albergues and authorities should or should not do & which priorities they should or should not have) it seems to me that there already is a solution.

As for the Frances. A quick google seach tells me that there are campings in Pamplona, Puenta la Reina, Logrono, Navarete, Najera, Burgos and Castrojeriz. I did not bother to do a more extensive search, but - combined with a search on this forum - I think one can get a long way in planning the CF while camping most nights. (not even mentioning the Norte, where this is also possible, as I witnessed many people doing this)

But maybe I am completely missing the point of this thread.
 
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Camino Chrissy

Take one step forward...then keep on walking..
Year of past OR future Camino
Frances 2015;
Norte/Primitivo 2016;
Frances 2017;
Le Puy 2018;
Portuguese/FishermanTr. 2019
Hi @Marc S.
You have listed eight designated camping areas on the Frances. That's a great start, but for a typical 30-40 day walk if doing it all, there would still be many nights to consider needing to stay in an albergue or else wild camping. Also, natural water sources could be an issue assuming you would be bathing outdoors much of the time.
I saw these guys camping a few times on the Primitivo, including seeing them sleeping under small church overhangs.
Screenshot_20210421-070511~2.png
 
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Kathar1na

Member
Year of past OR future Camino
To Santiago and back (roads & paths; Tours; Francés; sea; roads & paths)
it seems to me that there already is a solution
There was a similar earlier thread. I think what is desired is a network of small camping sites, fashioned after the albergue/dormitorio network. And the idea behind it is the reasoning that post-Covid-19 pilgrims don't want to share dormitories but they don't want to switch to private rooms either, they want to camp instead, and besides, the locals will be happy with every cent that they can earn thanks to these new options of accommodation for campingrinos.

None of us here knows whether this reasoning is widely known in the villages and towns along the caminos, or finding much interest if presented to them. Judging by Galicia, who do seem to have some kind of policy and future planning, they seem to want to see their private accommodations filled first, which is the reason why they haven't even opened their public albergues yet - there are more than enough beds for pilgrim walkers available on the supply side.

A similar argument could be heard, btw, when the Roncesvalles albergue was forced to reduce their offer of beds (for regulatory/sanitary reasons) a few years ago. The regional government argued that there were enough beds available in the private sector in and around Roncesvalles.

And while forum members seem to be very keen to travel to Spain at the earliest possible moment it remains to be seen how much pilgrims numbers and tourists numbers will actually pick up this year.
 
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Marc S.

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Since 2012: CF, CdN, CP, Salvador, Aragones, Via Regia, Elisabethpfad, Jakobsweg NRW, Jakibspaad.
You have listed eight designated camping areas on the Frances. That's a great start, but for a typical 30-40 day walk if doing it all, there would still be many nights to consider needing to stay in an albergue or else wild camping.

As I said, I just did a quick search. One more minute of googling tells me there are also campings in Leon, Carrion de los Condes and Sarria. My point is to make clear that camping on the Camino Frances (without wild camping, and possibly in combination with several nights of albergue of private accomodation) may well be a more viable option than is sometimes thought (and people can do their own research on this already).
 

Camino Chrissy

Take one step forward...then keep on walking..
Year of past OR future Camino
Frances 2015;
Norte/Primitivo 2016;
Frances 2017;
Le Puy 2018;
Portuguese/FishermanTr. 2019
I guess there are varying opinions on the matter. I only sleep indoors.
Here is a quote from an earlier post on this thread, which was given by a seasoned wild camper.

"Now back to Spain, it was actually nearly impossible to find a place to camp. I am not even talking about having access to some natural source of water. A lot of land in Spain is private and kept unmaintained. Throughout the 500km we saw just a couple of places that would be suitable for some form of camping, yet we usually passed them at a wrong time. We ended up sleeping outside only once near a beach, as it was around 8PM and the albergues and hotels within reasonable distance were full."
 
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Kathar1na

Member
Year of past OR future Camino
To Santiago and back (roads & paths; Tours; Francés; sea; roads & paths)
A similar argument could be heard, btw, when the Roncesvalles albergue was forced to reduce their offer of beds (for regulatory/sanitary reasons) a few years ago. The regional government argued that there were enough beds available in the private sector in and around Roncesvalles.
This reminds me ... I think you could camp on the site of the Roncesvalles albergue/compound and you could camp on the site of the gîte Orisson years ago but both is no longer allowed. Or has anyone seen tents or camped there in the last three to four years or so?
 

Marc S.

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Since 2012: CF, CdN, CP, Salvador, Aragones, Via Regia, Elisabethpfad, Jakobsweg NRW, Jakibspaad.
I think what is desired is a network of small camping sites, fashioned after the albergue/dormitorio network. And the idea behind it is the reasoning that post-Covid-19 pilgrims don't want to share dormitories but they don't want to switch to private rooms either, they want to camp instead, and besides, the locals will be happy with every cent that they can earn thanks to these new options of accommodation for campingrinos.

Well I do not know what is exactly desired by the OP.

All I know is there are plenty of campings in towns along the Frances, which cater the needs of:
- those preferring camping anyway
- those not wanting to share dormitories and not wanting to switch to private rooms.

This at least ticks two boxes. True, existing campings are not fashioned after the albergue network. But as far as I know, the camino was never meant to fulfill all desires one can possibly have.

Just to add. In June 2020 a list of albergues (including camping options) on the Camino Frances was added to the resource section on this forum.


As for albergues allowing pilgrims camping on their grounds. On the Norte this is often possible. On the Frances maybe less so, but there have been threads on this forum about this.

I guess my general message remains the same: that a lot is possible (although possible not everything that one is desiring for).
 
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Kathar1na

Member
Year of past OR future Camino
To Santiago and back (roads & paths; Tours; Francés; sea; roads & paths)
I was just trying to help keep the thread focused - for a selfish reason: it makes more interesting reading. I myself live and travel by a simple principle: tent only when there is no other option; shared dormitories only when there is no other option. :cool:
 

Kathar1na

Member
Year of past OR future Camino
To Santiago and back (roads & paths; Tours; Francés; sea; roads & paths)
Out of sheer curiosity, I had a look at the municipal camping of Hospital de Obrigo, picked at random. Well, we all know that the good pilgrim has no expectations and is duly grateful for every plot of land where s/he can rest his/her weary head together with his/her tired legs but well ... 🤐. The camping is a caravan park where you are also allowed to put up a tent. Quite different from the small cosy pilgrim campsite that I noticed in Rabanal (I think).

Obrigo.jpg
 
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domigee

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2020? Looks like.... nowhere! 😁
This reminds me ... I think you could camp on the site of the Roncesvalles albergue/compound and you could camp on the site of the gîte Orisson years ago but both is no longer allowed. Or has anyone seen tents or camped there in the last three to four years or so?
Last time I saw someone camping on the grass of the Roncesvalles albergue was 2012.
 

domigee

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2020? Looks like.... nowhere! 😁
Well I do not know what is exactly desired by the OP.

All I know is there are plenty of campings in towns along the Frances, which cater the needs of:
- those preferring camping anyway
- those not wanting to share dormitories and not wanting to switch to private rooms.

This at least ticks two boxes. True, existing campings are not fashioned after the albergue network. But as far as I know, the camino was never meant to fulfill all desires one can possibly have.

Just to add. In June 2020 a list of albergues (including camping options) on the Camino Frances was added to the resource section on this forum.


As for albergues allowing pilgrims camping on their grounds. On the Norte this is often possible. On the Frances maybe less so, but there have been threads on this forum about this.

I guess my general message remains the same: that a lot is possible (although possible not everything that one is desiring for).
Thanks for the info., I had no idea there were that many.
 

BuenC_JamieG

Conscious Travel Coach
Year of past OR future Camino
Camino Frances (2016)
Camino Portugal (2020)
Camino del Norte (2020)
Last year in July, when we went on the Camino Norte + Primitivo, we took a light tent and mat. I come from the Czech Republic, which is a country of camping, sleeping outside is legal (unless you are in a natural park) here even outside of designated camps, it has been a cultural thing that emerged during the dark times of socialism between 1948-1989 as people could be out of sight and sing American country songs. So, it is unthinkable that someone would call police on people camping in the nature even if it was in an ilegal spot these days, unless they do something naughty.The conditions here are perfect for camping, we have a great net of lakes, a lot of the land is still controlled by the state, so it is maintained, since we are young we learn how to make fire responsibly etc...

Now back to Spain, it was actually nearly impossible to find a place to camp. I am not even talking about having access to some natural source of water. A lot of land in Spain is private and kept unmaintained. Throughout the 500km we saw just a couple of places that would be suitable for some form of camping, yet we usually passed them at a wrong time. We ended up sleeping outside only once near a beach, as it was around 8PM and the albergues and hotels within reasonable distance were full.

So even if camping will become fully legal, the conditions will be an obstacle. I have walked over 1700km on different caminos and as an avid wild camper I just have this reflex of checking if a spot is suitable, and yet I have not found many suitable places for camping. Last week we went for a weekend in nature with 3 close friends to a completely new area and within 10 minutes we found a great spot for camping with source of water so we can filter it for drinking and cooking. That will always be hard on the camino as you want to stay near the route.
Thanks for this useful information. I was wondering about camping during the Norte. Don't think I'll be attempting that one now!
 

rtw

New Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2021
Any gentle, encouraging words or support from central government to regional governments? Any gentle, encouraging words or support to towns, villages or albergues from regional governments? Any towns, villages or albergues announced anything which might be considered 'progress' on the issue of camping .... ?
Forgive my ignorance, I was always under the impression that one can camp, cowboy camp, 100 yards from the trail, practicing LNT principles anywhere on the Camino, within reason, and away from urban, cities and military areas etc. It actually even is stated in many guidebooks, including Anna Dintaman’s popular Village to Village guide. I have attached a screenshot — 7B12A936-6DD8-4E89-9A09-5822C43EE5BF.jpeg
 

Kathar1na

Member
Year of past OR future Camino
To Santiago and back (roads & paths; Tours; Francés; sea; roads & paths)
I was always under the impression that one can camp, cowboy camp, 100 yards from the trail, practicing LNT principles anywhere on the Camino, within reason, and away from urban, cities and military areas etc. It actually even is stated in many guidebooks, including Anna Dintaman’s popular Village to Village guide. I have attached a screenshot
Where does the author say that wild/free camping is allowed? She cites some situations where camping is explicitly forbidden (under Spanish national law) and conveniently omits to add that camping is totally prohibited under the law of autonomous regions such as Navarra and Galicia, and subject to local rules and permits such as in La Rioja, and Castilla y Leon has yet another set of rules - the Camino Frances runs through all these regions.

Some people do 'wild/free' camp unobtrusively along the Camino and If you ""choose"" to free camp [my quotation marks], as this author puts it, doesn't mean that wild/free camping is allowed.

See https://thespanishbiker.wordpress.com/travel-planning/camping/free-camping/
 
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alexwalker

Forever Pilgrim
Year of past OR future Camino
(2009): Camino Frances
(2011): Sevilla-Salamanca, VdlP
(2012): Salamanca-SdC, VdlP
(2014): SJpdP-Astorga
(2015): Astorga-SdC
(2016) May Pamplona-Moratinos; Sept.:Burgos-SdC
(2016): August/Sept: Camino San Olav (Burgos-Covarubbias), Burgos-Sarria
(2017): May: Portuguese; Sept: Pamplona-SdC
I do not care too much about wildcampers, to be honest. If they leave no traces; good. I just don't like it, because of the obvious littering it will cause. That I don't like. Of course, if camping sites are found all around, all is well. But that is not the case along the Caminos in Spain. So if you are a camper person, you are bound to wildcamp on other person's grounds, i.e. illegally.

I do not even care to argue about it: If you are a camper in Spain, you WILL have to do wildcamping, out of pure lack of sites. All listings of available campsites along the Caminos show that they are few and far between.

Another issue is of course: Why not build more camping sites for those who want to stay in such places? Why not? Why hasn't it been done? The demand for those along the Caminos is extremely low. A bankrupcy project. A camping site cannot compete with the sum of the facilities offered by the albergues.

What I can say, for people starting out on their first Camino: The albergue community, where you end up in an albergue at the end of the day, paying a nominal fee for a bed, shelter, toilets, showers, etc., preparing communal food, talking to people, making new, and sometimes lifelong, friends, or walking companions for a few or many days, sharing experiences, thoughts, and much more, in other words, behaving as a friendly human, is priceless IMHO, compared to sitting alone in a tent. on top of a hill.

But to each his/her own. I have the hope that most people are social and want to share with/contribute to others. And then there are a few who don't. I know where I'll go.
 
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The Austrian

Member
Year of past OR future Camino
CF Nov 11, 2016
CF Oct 31, 2018
"But to each his/her own. I have the hope that most people are social and want to share with/contribute to others. And then there are a few who don't."

That's the crux of the discussion for me. I am thinking of my third Camino next year and independent from this thread I was contemplating partial outdoor sleeping. If I repeat in November again, this is an obsolete thought obviously ( I am not THAT tough), but the reaearch for both equipment and suitable locales was fun.

Not everyone wants to socialize every evening for a month straight. The solitude and silence for days was as gratifying for me as the odd meet up and community meals/discussions. I think there is a space for responsible outdoor sleeps, just as there is a community built around the Albergue experience
 

hecate105

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
'09 Portuguese Estellas '14 Aurelia '16 St Davids '17 Via Augusta/V dl P. '18/'19 Michael Mary Way
wow - as someone who has wild camped my whole life in many european and asian countries - I cannot quite believe how many people seem to think it is irresponsible and creates mess in ANY way at all...!
The whole point of wild camping is that you only leave footprints and take memories....
There is NO excuse for not burying any biodegradable waste and disposing of recyclable waste in the normal places and 'if' you have any other waste - binning it...! It is obvious to not have fires where it is unsafe - if you are unsure - don't.
Probably most people never know when someone has wild camped - because there is no sign. If seen when you are actually setting up or down - in all my 55 years I have never been asked to move or had anyone be anything less than concerned about me.... most people - farmers/locals/hikers/dog walkers - are always keen to help or advise on the route ahead - that is the same in every country and on pilgrimage routes, hiking routes, cycling routes...etc
Can we please be a little less judgemental about other peoples actions and look to ourselves - Caminos are often filthy with pilgrim-discarded litter - that is from the pilgrims staying in albergues and/or hotels who think it is easier to chuck it than carry it - why not censure those who actually cause mayhem instead of the ones who most likely don't - - those who just want to lie down and sleep.... is it too much to ask...?!
 

Undermanager

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Madrid (x2)
VDLP
Salvador
Primitivo
Finisterra / Muxia
Lana
Some good points here. I'm not sure how the conversation went from asking stakeholders at all levels in Spain to have calm, measured conversations about the feasibility of providing access to camping facilities and promoting responsible camping to help while Covid is with us, to one on wild camping! But hey ho. Such are forums.

Even if the outcomes of conversations are, we can't do it for reasons X, y and z, at least it has been thought about. I get the impression it's just not being discussed.

I really don't get some posts, though. Here we are in a dreadful pandemic, and it appears some posts are saying that nothing must change when Spain opens up, we must ignore the risks the pandemic brings, pretend everything is okay, that no conversations should be had that just might help e.g. on camping, that the status quo of previous years must be maintained come what may.

What is wrong with gently and politely asking anyone and everyone involved at all levels on all Caminos to have a think about camping, as a lot of people have asked about it? There might be some gems of ideas out there!
 
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Bristle Boy

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2022
wow - as someone who has wild camped my whole life in many european and asian countries - I cannot quite believe how many people seem to think it is irresponsible and creates mess in ANY way at all...!
The whole point of wild camping is that you only leave footprints and take memories....
There is NO excuse for not burying any biodegradable waste and disposing of recyclable waste in the normal places and 'if' you have any other waste - binning it...! It is obvious to not have fires where it is unsafe - if you are unsure - don't.
Probably most people never know when someone has wild camped - because there is no sign. If seen when you are actually setting up or down - in all my 55 years I have never been asked to move or had anyone be anything less than concerned about me.... most people - farmers/locals/hikers/dog walkers - are always keen to help or advise on the route ahead - that is the same in every country and on pilgrimage routes, hiking routes, cycling routes...etc
Can we please be a little less judgemental about other peoples actions and look to ourselves - Caminos are often filthy with pilgrim-discarded litter - that is from the pilgrims staying in albergues and/or hotels who think it is easier to chuck it than carry it - why not censure those who actually cause mayhem instead of the ones who most likely don't - - those who just want to lie down and sleep.... is it too much to ask...?!
I am very much with you on this.
In the end it is a choice how you sleep.
I was tempted to post that I felt the majority of litter and detritus was caused not by the camping community. Unfortunately there are no identifiers to support that assumption only the law of probability.
I also do not share the view that people who camp are not contributing to the community.
Looking on this forum of the various threads discussing snorers/windows open and closed/sleep apnea machines/mobile phones/early starters/noise/bed bugs and the various other complaints concerning communal sleeping I can understand why some should be looking for an alternative to this within their budget.
There is a third way and everyone has had to adapt over the last year and camping is very covid compliant.
I should add that I am not a camper but sympathetic to those who wish to.
 
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Camino Chrissy

Take one step forward...then keep on walking..
Year of past OR future Camino
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Le Puy 2018;
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There are only a miniscule amount of wild campers who go on Camino, so comparing any mess they potentially have made, or will make, to the upwards of nearly 300,000 pilgrims and walkers on the Camino trails each year is nearly a moot point.
 

David Tallan

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2018
Some good points here. I'm not sure how the conversation went from asking stakeholders at all levels in Spain to have calm, measured conversations about the feasibility of providing access to camping facilities and promoting responsible camping to help while Covid is with us, to one on wild camping! But hey ho. Such are forums.

Even if the outcomes of conversations are, we can't do it for reasons X, y and z, at least it has been thought about. I get the impression it's just not being discussed.

I really don't get some posts, though. Here we are in a dreadful pandemic, and it appears some posts are saying that nothing must change when Spain opens up, we must ignore the risks the pandemic brings, pretend everything is okay, that no conversations should be had that just might help e.g. on camping, that the status quo of previous years must be maintained come what may.

What is wrong with gently and politely asking anyone and everyone involved at all levels on all Caminos to have a think about camping, as a lot of people have asked about it? There might be some gems of ideas out there!
I don't think anyone is saying that "nothing must change when Spain opens up, we must ignore the risks the pandemic brings, pretend everything is okay" and I'm not sure that is a fair way to characterize the views of everyone who does not enthusiastically embrace camping as the solution to all of the pandemic problems of the future. (See, now you know how it feels to have sweeping and unfair generalizations made from your words.)

Aside from discussions about wild camping, which seem to crop up whenever the topic of camping on the Camino is raised, there has been some discussion of what camping facilities already exist and people have been pointing out the challenges to getting stakeholders at all levels in Spain to have calm, measured conversations about anything. There are just so many stakeholders and authority over the Camino, such as it is, is so fragmented, with each having their own priorities. (See also: the discussions about washroom facilities along the Caminos.)

You ask "What is wrong with gently and politely asking anyone and everyone involved at all levels on all Caminos to have a think about camping, as a lot of people have asked about it?" I say, nothing is wrong with it. But it hasn't been done here. Because most of the people involved at all levels on all Caminos aren't reading this forum. If you want to ask them all, you have to go where they are. And that is a heck of a lot of places. That's a lot of work and a lot more difficult than posting the question here. But it is likely a lot more productive. Posting here, won't get much action, just a lot of opinions. If they don't agree with you, you will find them troublesome. If they do agree with you, you are still no further ahead.
 

domigee

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2020? Looks like.... nowhere! 😁
wow - as someone who has wild camped my whole life in many european and asian countries - I cannot quite believe how many people seem to think it is irresponsible and creates mess in ANY way at all...!
The whole point of wild camping is that you only leave footprints and take memories....
There is NO excuse for not burying any biodegradable waste and disposing of recyclable waste in the normal places and 'if' you have any other waste - binning it...! It is obvious to not have fires where it is unsafe - if you are unsure - don't.
Probably most people never know when someone has wild camped - because there is no sign. If seen when you are actually setting up or down - in all my 55 years I have never been asked to move or had anyone be anything less than concerned about me.... most people - farmers/locals/hikers/dog walkers - are always keen to help or advise on the route ahead - that is the same in every country and on pilgrimage routes, hiking routes, cycling routes...etc
Can we please be a little less judgemental about other peoples actions and look to ourselves - Caminos are often filthy with pilgrim-discarded litter - that is from the pilgrims staying in albergues and/or hotels who think it is easier to chuck it than carry it - why not censure those who actually cause mayhem instead of the ones who most likely don't - - those who just want to lie down and sleep.... is it too much to ask...?!
Sadly, I think you belong to a minority. Those campers who leave no trace. Look around you.... Those pilgrims you mention who discard litter, can you imagine the damage should they choose wild-camping? 😱
 

Dromengro

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
SJPdP - Leon 1984
Frances (2021)
Look around you.... Those pilgrims you mention who discard litter, can you imagine the damage should they choose wild-camping? 😱
Sadly that is the problem. It is not the act of wild camping, but those who do not do it properly, especially in greater numbers, that is the problem.
Since it was made legal in Scotland this has created the same problems as those that @alexwalker has seen in Norway. Even though I've wild camped everywhere in Europe my whole life I wish it had not happened here and would not like to see it become more legal elsewhere. Sometimes it's better to leave things the way they are. Genuine wild campers will still do it, however you will never know, as most will not leave a trace. If you have to hide away you're more likely to set up late and leave early, not leave a mess or disturb people.

My camping has never had any more impact than it would if I had not camped, probably less, and has deprived no one, if I have wild camped. Instead of spending my money on somewhere to sleep I have spent more on food to eat.
I do not want any more bricks and mortar accommodation, electric, or water services built for me, just a small patch of God's earth and the stars above will do for me to rest my head on.

However as usual with camping threads this has digressed into wild camping, rather than it's original intention of seeing more small legal campsites available, which would lead to less wild camping. But strangely even legal camping seems to be frowned upon by many, not just on this site but generally.
Although I would welcome more places to legally sleep naturally under the stars, I can't see that happening any time soon unless there is a greater demand and can't see that happening either. Folk these days have got used to having the "comfort" of modern life, never mind carrying the weight of the extras needed. Even campsites have changed a lot over the years. At one time folk were happy with little more than patch of grass, and maybe a toilet. But it's rare to find simple sites now, as the modern camper demands more and more, often for tents or pods to be available and the patch of grass is covered more and more in concrete and facilities to the point where you might as well be in an Albergue, Hostel or Hotel.

Things have changed so much over the years, who knows what accommodation there will be and what it will look like for future pilgrims, even the Albergues were looked upon with suspicion when they first started.
 

Camino Chrissy

Take one step forward...then keep on walking..
Year of past OR future Camino
Frances 2015;
Norte/Primitivo 2016;
Frances 2017;
Le Puy 2018;
Portuguese/FishermanTr. 2019
At one time folk were happy with little more than patch of grass, and maybe a toilet. But it's rare to find simple sites now, as the modern camper demands more and more, often for tents or pods to be available and the patch of grass is covered more and more in concrete and facilities
This has become so true in the US. We took our boys camping on weekends and most vacations growing up, and have great memories of enjoying nature, ending with evening campfires. We finally gave up camping several years ago for the very reasons you mention, huge rigs on concrete slabs lined up like sardines with few spots allowed for tents or pop-ups. In addition, it is rarely allowed to collect your own wood in the forest which our kids loved,but it now must be purchased from the campgrounds.
 
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Undermanager

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Madrid (x2)
VDLP
Salvador
Primitivo
Finisterra / Muxia
Lana
I generally love staying in albergues and it would be my first choice on a Camino; you get to enjoy the afternoon shower and snooze, the evening sun, wander and wind-down, often great food and wine, top company, making new friends, relaxing. I will miss that.

I'll have my second jab soon but even after that, no way would I share an albergue dorm for the foreseeable unless everyone in the dorm had been vaccinated, and had to show proof. It's just reckless to do that for all the obvious well-discussed reasons. Which is why camping could be an option for those who enjoy it. The Government's role, Fernando Valdez's role, surely is simply to kick-start conversations, encourage people, businesses, local Camino organisations, individual albergues, local councils etc etc to think about it, talk about it! But it's not happening?

I've stayed in many albergues where a free standing tent could be pitched. In other places, towns and smaller villages, perhaps there's an opportunity to allow people to use showers and toilets in homes, bars, other places for a fee and then camp on the outskirts and bring in some money. As I repeatedly keep saying, I'm not suggesting wild camping. I'm talking about stakeholders at whatever level being encouraged to talk about the idea for where they are and their particular circumstances, to ask questions, to see if basic camping facilities of some sort could be an option, even short term, to re-energise Caminos, help get money back into businesses, help spread people's sleeping arrangements out, reduce risks etc.

No one is talking about a camping free for all. I'm not at all for wild camping in Spain, as personally, I think the risks of e.g. a reckless few lighting fires or leaving poo and litter isn't worth it. It's about adapting to a situation that is new, that none of us wanted or wants. It's about not just waiting for the old ways to return and refusing to talk about what needs to change or be adapted!!
 
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Bristle Boy

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2022
I generally love staying in albergues and it would be my first choice on a Camino; you get to enjoy the afternoon shower and snooze, the evening sun, wander and wind-down, often great food and wine, top company, making new friends, relaxing. I will miss that.

I'll have my second jab soon but even after that, no way would I share an albergue dorm for the foreseeable unless everyone in the dorm had been vaccinated, and had to show proof. It's just reckless to do that for all the obvious well-discussed reasons. Which is why camping could be an option for those who enjoy it. The Government's role, Fernando Valdez's role, surely is simply to kick-start conversations, encourage people, businesses, local Camino organisations, individual albergues, local councils etc etc to think about it, talk about it! But it's not happening?

I've stayed in many albergues where a free standing tent could be pitched. In other places, towns and smaller villages, perhaps there's an opportunity to allow people to use showers and toilets in homes, bars, other places for a fee and then camp on the outskirts and bring in some money. As I repeatedly keep saying, I'm not suggesting wild camping. I'm talking about stakeholders at whatever level being encouraged to talk about the idea for where they are and their particular circumstances, to ask questions, to see if basic camping facilities of some sort could be an option, even short term, to re-energise Caminos, help get money back into businesses, help spread people's sleeping arrangements out, reduce risks etc.

No one is talking about a camping free for all. I'm not at all for wild camping in Spain, as personally, I think the risks of e.g. a reckless few lighting fires or leaving poo and litter isn't worth it. It's about adapting to a situation that is new, that none of us wanted or wants. It's about not just waiting for the old ways to return and refusing to talk about what needs to change or be adapted!!
I think you have described my train of thought well in how I could see the provision of camping as a means of sleeping.
If an albergue has adjoining land I cannot see a problem with either providing tents as a sleeping option (for the reasons I have previously described) or the space to pitch and rest the night for those that prefer to carry and use their own tent with a pricing option to include some of the facilities of the albergue, I see this as a positive.
It is a discussion worth having which could provide the benefits to all involved.
I don't advocate "wild camping" but more as an option to those who prefer it to a dormitory style sleeping arrangement.
This could provide a further avenue stream for an albergue and increase the choices available.
 

hecate105

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
'09 Portuguese Estellas '14 Aurelia '16 St Davids '17 Via Augusta/V dl P. '18/'19 Michael Mary Way
I would love to stay in albergues every night but just can't afford it! It took 5 weeks for us to cycle the VdLP - from Cadiz but still slow by many's standards!! Stayed in some wonderful albergues....but camped 2 nights in 3. Many have not got the finances to pay for accom. every night - there are others ways you can contribute....we stopped to give pilgrims cherries on the Norte as we returned home. It didnt cost a lot but was really appreciated by hot dusty folk!!
 

Kanga

Moderator
Staff member
Year of past OR future Camino
Francés x 5, Le Puy x 2, Arles, Tours, Norte, Madrid, Via de la Plata, Portuguese, Primitivo
We found problems with using our tent in albergue grounds. The main problem for the owners/hospitaleros is that they are only licensed to cater for a certain number of people each night, regardless of where those people sleep. I guess that will be a problem exacerbated by health regulations following Covid.
 

Carlos Santiago

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2018
Wow, I thought there would be innovation along the Camino. I have always seen camping as a way out of the "enclosed space with many people inside (to avoid virus super spreaders)". By camping, pilgrims can rest for the day while still following health protocols like social distancing and isolating oneself and still have peace-of-mind.
It appears, however, that here, camping means "wild camping" only. I was thinking of organized camping, where one pays a certain fee. There are tent spaces, toilet, bath, cooking facilities, and picnic tables ... and even charging stations for electronics; so many combinations.
This will need lots of open space, different but familiar management skills, and new or adjustment of existing facilities. All of these are not unavailable, I believe.
 
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mspath

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Frances, autumn/winter; 2004, 2005-2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015
Wow, I thought there would be innovation along the Camino. I have always seen camping as a way out of the "enclosed space with many people inside (to avoid virus super spreaders)". By camping, pilgrims can rest for the day while still following health protocols like social distancing and isolating oneself and still have peace-of-mind.
It appears, however, that here, camping means "wild camping" only. I was thinking of organized camping, where one pays a certain fee. There are tent spaces, toilet, bath, cooking facilities, and picnic tables ... and even charging stations for electronics; so many combinations.
This will need lots of open space, different but familiar management skills, and new or adjustment of existing facilities. All of these are not unavailable, I believe.

This place, Camping Urobi, which is located
after Burguete offers pilgrim accommodation and food such as you describe

Good luck and Buen camino!
 
Last edited:

sfdithomas

Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2015
"Pay your fees to the albergues for staying safe ...."

That is the issue. Many simply do not envisage feeling safe sharing with strangers in an albergue for a long time to come. This is why camping along routes is something many want taken far more seriously than it appears to have been done. Actions at all levels in a timely, planned manner to make it happen when routes are available is the best way forward for everyone.
Just mho, if folks don’t envisage feeling safe then it’s probably best for them to just stay home. People seem to want to always be accommodated no matter the cost.
 

C clearly

Moderator
Staff member
Year of past OR future Camino
2021
Just mho, if folks don’t envisage feeling safe then it’s probably best for them to just stay home. People seem to want to always be accommodated no matter the cost.
Of course. That is why the OP and others have asked the question - so they can assess whether they would feel safe with the available accommodation. That is quite wise, and is what everyone needs to do when making a decision to leave home or not.
 

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