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Starting from Madrid - where would you go through?

b344433

New Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2011
2018
Hi pilgrims,

I want to start walking on Camino de Madrid circa beginning of September (Don't have my airplane tickets yet, but somewhere around the 5th-7th I think?)
I want to walk all the way to Santiago (not only Sahagun). I also want to minimize my time on CF.

Options:
- CF for Sahagun->Santiago.
- CF for Sahagun->Ponferrada. then camino invierno.
- CF for Sahagun->Leon. then connect to camino salvador and primitivo.
- IDK? Can I connect to VDLP from camino Madrid before Sahagun and avoid CF entirely (but not walk the entire CdM)?

I slightly dislike the salvador-primitivo option just because it "extends" in a non-natural way, although it should be the most beautiful and I might end up going for this anyway, it feels slightly "irrational" to take the such a de-tour.

Any thoughts from your experience? any recommendations?
 
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Alvin T

New Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2
I did the Madrid Camino in May 2019 and loved it. (See my YouTube video). If I do it again (and I plan to) I would continue to Leon and do the San Salvador/Primitivo routes. I would also recommend staying in downtown Madrid an extra night. I walked to the edge of the city and took the subway back downtown on the first day of my walk. Then I took the subway back to that same spot the next morning and was on my way. If you have the time, stay an extra day in Segovia - well worth it!
 

Mera

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Camino France, Camino del Norte, Camino de Madrid
Camino Porto, Camino Primitivo
Yeah, also Madrid Zoo (panda lives there) is a great place to visit. It's a walking distance from the downtown, through a beautiful park.
 

O Peracha

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Le Puy to Santiago (2014)
Annapurna Base, Nepal (2014)
GR 5 - Holland to Pompey, France (2015)
Lisbon to Finesterre (2016)
My wife and I are heading out in September to do the Camino Madrid but we are going to start in Ucles. So, it'll be Camino Ucles to Camino Madrid to Frances to Invierno to Santiago. I've already done the Salvador and Primitivo and both are fantastic. From what I've read, Invierno sounds great also and, so, can't go wrong either way. I'd do what ever makes the most sense this time and then comeback for the other, later.
 
Year of past OR future Camino
Francés, Plata, Levante, Norte (part), Primitivo, Catalan, Lana (part), Madrid, D.V. Francés 2020
Hello B!

One way to avoid the CF entirely is to leave the Camino de Madrid in Puente de Duero (a few km before Valladolid) and then follow the Senda del Duero / GR 14 to Zamora via Tordesillas, Castronuño and Toro.

In Castronuño you will also join the Camino de Levante and you can follow the yellow arrows to Zamora instead of the red and white stripes of the GR 14.

In Zamora you will join the Vía de la Plata. Three stages further on in Granja de Moreruela you leave the Vía de la Plata and follow the Camino Sanabrés to Santiago.

The Senda del Duero / GR 14 is very well signposted (better than Caminos); http://www.lasendadelduero.com/rutas-por-el-duero/sendero-gr-14/ (see stages 15 to 18). But it has the disadvantage of "hugging" the Duero where a straighter path would be shorter. For that reason you may want to follow the Camino de Levante from Castronuño to Zamora.

I hope that does not sound too complicated! I attach a map which will hopefully help you.

Buen camino!
 

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Scott Sweeney

Active Member
I did the Madrid Camino in May 2019 and loved it. (See my YouTube video). If I do it again (and I plan to) I would continue to Leon and do the San Salvador/Primitivo routes. I would also recommend staying in downtown Madrid an extra night. I walked to the edge of the city and took the subway back downtown on the first day of my walk. Then I took the subway back to that same spot the next morning and was on my way. If you have the time, stay an extra day in Segovia - well worth it!
We did the Madrid Camino in October to mid November in 2019. We saw one couple once in all that time. Places were closed which made days longer. Glad we did it but I'm not sure we'd do it again.
 

Scott Sweeney

Active Member
I did the Madrid Camino in May 2019 and loved it. (See my YouTube video). If I do it again (and I plan to) I would continue to Leon and do the San Salvador/Primitivo routes. I would also recommend staying in downtown Madrid an extra night. I walked to the edge of the city and took the subway back downtown on the first day of my walk. Then I took the subway back to that same spot the next morning and was on my way. If you have the time, stay an extra day in Segovia - well worth it!
Not to mention two weeks later we both got really sick, coughing hard to breathe. We proceeded to pass it on to both sides of the family. Of course know one new about covid then.
 
Last edited:

Alvin T

New Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2
We did the Madrid Camino in October to mid November in 2019. We saw one couple once in all that time. Places were closed which made days longer. Glad we did it but I'm not sure we'd do it again.
Spring is perhaps better because of all the wildflowers. I didn’t meet many pilgrims and that was good for me - lots of time for reflection.
 

Albertagirl

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Frances (2015); Aragones-Frances (2016); VdlP-Sanabres (2017); Madrid-Frances-Invierno (2019)Levante
In the fall of 2019 I walked the second option: the Madrid to the Frances to the Invierno to Santiago. The air was full of dust on the Madrid north of Segovia (farmers cultivating their dry fields) and it rained nearly non-stop on my time on the Invierno. However, the scenery and meetings with locals were rewarding on both routes. From reading posts about the Madrid, fall (or late spring) may still be the best time to walk it, as the deep snow in Fuenfria Pass melts very late in the spring. I liked the feeling of taking a direct route to Santiago and was comfortable with the larger numbers of pilgrims on the section on the Frances. There is no problem walking from central Madrid to Tres Cantos (23km) on your first day if you are not eager to do the back and forth on the subway system to get out of downtown.
 
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b344433

New Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2011
2018
Hello B!

One way to avoid the CF entirely is to leave the Camino de Madrid in Puente de Duero (a few km before Valladolid) and then follow the Senda del Duero / GR 14 to Zamora via Tordesillas, Castronuño and Toro.

In Castronuño you will also join the Camino de Levante and you can follow the yellow arrows to Zamora instead of the red and white stripes of the GR 14.

In Zamora you will join the Vía de la Plata. Three stages further on in Granja de Moreruela you leave the Vía de la Plata and follow the Camino Sanabrés to Santiago.

The Senda del Duero / GR 14 is very well signposted (better than Caminos); http://www.lasendadelduero.com/rutas-por-el-duero/sendero-gr-14/ (see stages 15 to 18). But it has the disadvantage of "hugging" the Duero where a straighter path would be shorter. For that reason you may want to follow the Camino de Levante from Castronuño to Zamora.

I hope that does not sound too complicated! I attach a map which will hopefully help you.

Buen camino!
Wow, this is amazing!

It seems like this should be the most obvious way to walk from Madrid - it's almost the most "direct" one that's for sure!
Should I find pilgrim's accommodation in this "shortcut"?
With Gronze I see in Puente de Duero and Zamora, but nothing in Castronuño, Toro and Tordesillas.
I also assume that in the Albergue in Puente de Duero I could get further and updated information.

--
I realize it's not a decision I need to make now.
What I'll do is mark all those on MapsMe, then I could decide based on how I feel when walking.

Generally I estimated around 5 weeks for Madrid -> Santiago -> Finisterre. I think it's reasonable and leaves me enough flexibility. (In the worst case, I'll skip Finisterre. I already walked it multiple times)
What do you think?

I have some time-flexibility too, but sadly not enough to add Camino Ucles - although it looks amazing. I need to be in Portugal later in October. But here's to another camino on my "TO-WALK" list. *cheers*
 

b344433

New Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2011
2018
In the fall of 2019 I walked the second option: the Madrid to the Frances to the Invierno to Santiago. The air was full of dust on the Madrid north of Segovia (farmers cultivating their dry fields) and it rained nearly non-stop on my time on the Invierno. However, the scenery and meetings with locals were rewarding on both routes. From reading posts about the Madrid, fall (or late spring) may still be the best time to walk it, as the deep snow in Fuenfria Pass melts very late in the spring. I liked the feeling of taking a direct route to Santiago and was comfortable with the larger numbers of pilgrims on the section on the Frances. There is no problem walking from central Madrid to Tres Cantos (23km) on your first day if you are not eager to do the back and forth on the subway system to get out of downtown.
Thanks! I'll need to face the dust then, as September is the only time I'll have in 2021. Hopefully the Covid-19 situation would also improve by then too.

I see that Tres Cantos has a Parish Pilgrim Albergue "Santa Teresa de Jesús" and also an Municipal (that is temporarily closed) - why do people bother taking the subway then? I don't really understand.
 
Year of past OR future Camino
2019
The Invierno is a very special camino, so in your shoes I'd want to include it.

So here's another option, more direct than the Primativo option and still minimizing your days on the Frances:
CdM (Madrid-Sahagun)
Frances (Sahagun-Leon) 2-3 days
San Salvador (Leon-La Robla) 1 day
Olvidado (La Robla-Ponferrada) 6-8 days
Invierno (Ponferrada-Santiago) 8-12 days
 

b344433

New Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2011
2018
I did the Madrid Camino in May 2019 and loved it. (See my YouTube video). If I do it again (and I plan to) I would continue to Leon and do the San Salvador/Primitivo routes. I would also recommend staying in downtown Madrid an extra night. I walked to the edge of the city and took the subway back downtown on the first day of my walk. Then I took the subway back to that same spot the next morning and was on my way. If you have the time, stay an extra day in Segovia - well worth it!
Alvin, your video made my legs yearn for walking and my mind day-dream of yellow arrows ! Thanks !!
 

Albertagirl

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Frances (2015); Aragones-Frances (2016); VdlP-Sanabres (2017); Madrid-Frances-Invierno (2019)Levante
Thanks! I'll need to face the dust then, as September is the only time I'll have in 2021. Hopefully the Covid-19 situation would also improve by then too.

I see that Tres Cantos has a Parish Pilgrim Albergue "Santa Teresa de Jesús" and also an Municipal (that is temporarily closed) - why do people bother taking the subway then? I don't really understand.
There was no parish albergue when I walked that route, only a tiny municipal albergue, which had odd hours, as it was in the basement of a municipal building and pilgrims had to be out very early, before it opened. That albergue was closed, apparently permanently, when I walked through, so I ended up staying in an expensive hotel, there being no albergue option at the time. But there was some reasonably priced accommodation in town, only it had to be booked way in advance. As my plans changed at the last minute, I was not able to make advance bookings. After Tres Cantos, there were many inexpensive albergue options.
 
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b344433

New Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2011
2018
There was no parish albergue when I walked that route, only a tiny municipal albergue, which had odd hours, as it was in the basement of a municipal building and pilgrims had to be out very early, before it opened. That albergue was closed, apparently permanently, when I walked through, so I ended up staying in an expensive hotel, there being no albergue option at the time. But there was some reasonably priced accommodation in town, only it had to be booked way in advance. As my plans changed at the last minute, I was not able to make advance bookings. After Tres Cantos, there were many inexpensive albergue options.
Oh, I get it. Now according to Gronze there's the Parish place (parish places would always be my preferred option). I don't mind paying slightly more than the few euros I payed in CF. That's life :)
Generally, I dislike the idea of taking public transport, even if I'm back to the same spot. But that's me and I'm ok with myself.
Thanks!
 

b344433

New Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2011
2018
The Invierno is a very special camino, so in your shoes I'd want to include it.

So here's another option, more direct than the Primativo option and still minimizing your days on the Frances:
CdM (Madrid-Sahagun)
Frances (Sahagun-Leon) 2-3 days
San Salvador (Leon-La Robla) 1 day
Olvidado (La Robla-Ponferrada) 6-8 days
Invierno (Ponferrada-Santiago) 8-12 days
WOW, thank you so much!

Now I think I have 2 preferred options to choose from - your suggestion and the GR14 one suggested above. The GR14 one I think would be slightly shorter.
 

dick bird

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Plata, Ingles, Madrid, Norte, Primitivo, Invierno, Aragones, Olvidado, Chemin D'Arles

We walked the Madrid in 2018. Here is a link to a youtube video to give some idea of what it looks like. We have walked both the Invierno and the Salvador + Primitivo and I don't think there is anything to choose between them except that the Salvador + Primitivo is longer (which is a plus, I think). Anyway, Buen Camino.
 

jpflavin1

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2021
Hi pilgrims,

I want to start walking on Camino de Madrid circa beginning of September (Don't have my airplane tickets yet, but somewhere around the 5th-7th I think?)
I want to walk all the way to Santiago (not only Sahagun). I also want to minimize my time on CF.

Options:
- CF for Sahagun->Santiago.
- CF for Sahagun->Ponferrada. then camino invierno.
- CF for Sahagun->Leon. then connect to camino salvador and primitivo.
- IDK? Can I connect to VDLP from camino Madrid before Sahagun and avoid CF entirely (but not walk the entire CdM)?

I slightly dislike the salvador-primitivo option just because it "extends" in a non-natural way, although it should be the most beautiful and I might end up going for this anyway, it feels slightly "irrational" to take the such a de-tour.

Any thoughts from your experience? any recommendations?
I plan on re-walking the Madrid/San Salvador/Primitivo in the Fall. So my choice for you would be that option.

I also hope you post along the way.
 
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