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The beautiful Primitivo

smallp

New Member
Time of past OR future Camino
July 2022, Camino Primitivo
I returned last week from my very first, and definitely not my last, Camino. I found this forum so super helpful that I just wanted to share a few things that others might find helpful on their journey too.

Firstly, I cannot recommend this route highly enough. As my first, I can't compare it to the others, but I do know that it was magical. It is hilly, for sure, but with all day to do it, I found it very manageable. I had a mix of stage lengths from 12 miles (20k) to almost 22 miles (34k). I was really worried about the longer days but I broke them up with a mid-morning snack and coffee, a lunch break and a stop in the afternoon. In fact, as my enjoyment grew, on the short days I longed for the longer days.

I used the Wise Camino app and the Buen Camino app. The Buen Camino was particularly useful as you could tell if you'd gone away from the route.

I had my luggage carried for me by TaxiCamino. (I'd thought I'd run some stages so had extra kit, but I soon realised that that would made it pass far too quickly so abandoned that plan!). Booking was super simple, you just email your details, they send you a link to a booking site where they have added your stops and you pay. I couldn't print the labels but they added their label to my bag on the first day which was fine.

I also stayed in hotels. Having recovered from Covid a few weeks before I still had a hacking cough and didn't think anyone in a hostel would appreciate that all night. I can thoroughly recommend these:

Grado - Hotel Areces - very clean, simple rooms. Breakfast is included but as I was leaving before it started they made me a little packed breakfast to take away.
Just before Salas - La Figal de Zugabolog - this is a hostel with private rooms too. It's a beautiful space with really kind owners. It feels like being in someone's home. I ate there and the food was delicious (vegetarian too!)
Campiello - Casa Herminia - i had a private room which was simple and clean. And doubly lovely because lots of pilgrims from the Albergues were eating in the restaurant.
Berducedo - Aracelli - gorgeous room and lovely spot a little bit out of the way with a really kind owner. The food was amazing and although I don't speak any Spanish, google translate worked wonders!
A Fonsgrada - Hotel Portiico - a beautiful building that has been converted very sympathetically and with a free coffee machine! I ate in my favourite restaurant here, Restaurant Cantabrico, twice. Lunch and dinner! It was excellent.
O Cadavo - Pension A Marronda - recently converted to a hotel I think. Really nice clean, comfy room. The pizzas are yummy!

As others have mentioned, where the Primitivo joins the Frances you really notice a difference. I have to say that, for me, I missed the peace and tranquility of my earlier days but it was nice to see so many people enjoying it.

On a peaceful note, I queued to get into the pilgrim mass in Santiago at 12.30 and 7.30pm but both were full. Instead I went to the 7.30am. Which was, again, a beautiful experience. A slightly shorter service but very few people and time to walk round the stunning cathedral in the quiet of an early morning. If you are an English speaker, then I recommend the English mass which is held in a little chapel in the Pilgrim Office at 10.30am every day. It's on the left as you go into the Pilgrim Office. I am not religious but it was lovely to be part of the ceremony and be blessed as a pilgrim.

I think whichever way you choose to do your Camino, the Primitivo really won't disappoint. It lifts the soul and calms the spirit in a way I have never encountered. And in a world, that for me, is often chaotic and too busy, it so made me appreciate such simple things. A glass of freshly squeezed orange juice. The breeze on my feet when I've taken my sock and shoes off to rest. A Buen Camino and a smile from a local. The sight and sounds of friends welcoming you at a coffee or beer stop. A stunning sunrise at the start of a new day. When I close my eyes now it takes me back to somewhere very special. For all of you who take this route or any other, Buen Camino.
 
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Glen Moray

New Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Frances 2012-13; 2013-4;2016-17 SDC-Muxia-Finisterre 2015, 2018 Ferrol-SDC 2018
Thanks for that. I am starting the Primitivo on September 28th and look forward to all the peace and wonderful hotels you have described
 
Time of past OR future Camino
Camino Frances 21 October 2014
Portugese Way October 2018
I returned last week from my very first, and definitely not my last, Camino. I found this forum so super helpful that I just wanted to share a few things that others might find helpful on their journey too.

Firstly, I cannot recommend this route highly enough. As my first, I can't compare it to the others, but I do know that it was magical. It is hilly, for sure, but with all day to do it, I found it very manageable. I had a mix of stage lengths from 12 miles (20k) to almost 22 miles (34k). I was really worried about the longer days but I broke them up with a mid-morning snack and coffee, a lunch break and a stop in the afternoon. In fact, as my enjoyment grew, on the short days I longed for the longer days.

I used the Wise Camino app and the Buen Camino app. The Buen Camino was particularly useful as you could tell if you'd gone away from the route.

I had my luggage carried for me by TaxiCamino. (I'd thought I'd run some stages so had extra kit, but I soon realised that that would made it pass far too quickly so abandoned that plan!). Booking was super simple, you just email your details, they send you a link to a booking site where they have added your stops and you pay. I couldn't print the labels but they added their label to my bag on the first day which was fine.

I also stayed in hotels. Having recovered from Covid a few weeks before I still had a hacking cough and didn't think anyone in a hostel would appreciate that all night. I can thoroughly recommend these:

Grado - Hotel Areces - very clean, simple rooms. Breakfast is included but as I was leaving before it started they made me a little packed breakfast to take away.
Just before Salas - La Figal de Zugabolog - this is a hostel with private rooms too. It's a beautiful space with really kind owners. It feels like being in someone's home. I ate there and the food was delicious (vegetarian too!)
Campiello - Casa Herminia - i had a private room which was simple and clean. And doubly lovely because lots of pilgrims from the Albergues were eating in the restaurant.
Berducedo - Aracelli - gorgeous room and lovely spot a little bit out of the way with a really kind owner. The food was amazing and although I don't speak any Spanish, google translate worked wonders!
A Fonsgrada - Hotel Portiico - a beautiful building that has been converted very sympathetically and with a free coffee machine! I ate in my favourite restaurant here, Restaurant Cantabrico, twice. Lunch and dinner! It was excellent.
O Cadavo - Pension A Marronda - recently converted to a hotel I think. Really nice clean, comfy room. The pizzas are yummy!

As others have mentioned, where the Primitivo joins the Frances you really notice a difference. I have to say that, for me, I missed the peace and tranquility of my earlier days but it was nice to see so many people enjoying it.

On a peaceful note, I queued to get into the pilgrim mass in Santiago at 12.30 and 7.30pm but both were full. Instead I went to the 7.30am. Which was, again, a beautiful experience. A slightly shorter service but very few people and time to walk round the stunning cathedral in the quiet of an early morning. If you are an English speaker, then I recommend the English mass which is held in a little chapel in the Pilgrim Office at 10.30am every day. It's on the left as you go into the Pilgrim Office. I am not religious but it was lovely to be part of the ceremony and be blessed as a pilgrim.

I think whichever way you choose to do your Camino, the Primitivo really won't disappoint. It lifts the soul and calms the spirit in a way I have never encountered. And in a world, that for me, is often chaotic and too busy, it so made me appreciate such simple things. A glass of freshly squeezed orange juice. The breeze on my feet when I've taken my sock and shoes off to rest. A Buen Camino and a smile from a local. The sight and sounds of friends welcoming you at a coffee or beer stop. A stunning sunrise at the start of a new day. When I close my eyes now it takes me back to somewhere very special. For all of you who take this route or any other, Buen Camino.
How long did you take to do it?
 
John Brierley 2022 Camino Guide
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gittiharre

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
CF Austria Czech Le Puy Geneva RLS V. Jacobi V. Regia V. Baltica/Scandinavica Porto Muxia
I returned last week from my very first, and definitely not my last, Camino. I found this forum so super helpful that I just wanted to share a few things that others might find helpful on their journey too.

Firstly, I cannot recommend this route highly enough. As my first, I can't compare it to the others, but I do know that it was magical. It is hilly, for sure, but with all day to do it, I found it very manageable. I had a mix of stage lengths from 12 miles (20k) to almost 22 miles (34k). I was really worried about the longer days but I broke them up with a mid-morning snack and coffee, a lunch break and a stop in the afternoon. In fact, as my enjoyment grew, on the short days I longed for the longer days.

I used the Wise Camino app and the Buen Camino app. The Buen Camino was particularly useful as you could tell if you'd gone away from the route.

I had my luggage carried for me by TaxiCamino. (I'd thought I'd run some stages so had extra kit, but I soon realised that that would made it pass far too quickly so abandoned that plan!). Booking was super simple, you just email your details, they send you a link to a booking site where they have added your stops and you pay. I couldn't print the labels but they added their label to my bag on the first day which was fine.

I also stayed in hotels. Having recovered from Covid a few weeks before I still had a hacking cough and didn't think anyone in a hostel would appreciate that all night. I can thoroughly recommend these:

Grado - Hotel Areces - very clean, simple rooms. Breakfast is included but as I was leaving before it started they made me a little packed breakfast to take away.
Just before Salas - La Figal de Zugabolog - this is a hostel with private rooms too. It's a beautiful space with really kind owners. It feels like being in someone's home. I ate there and the food was delicious (vegetarian too!)
Campiello - Casa Herminia - i had a private room which was simple and clean. And doubly lovely because lots of pilgrims from the Albergues were eating in the restaurant.
Berducedo - Aracelli - gorgeous room and lovely spot a little bit out of the way with a really kind owner. The food was amazing and although I don't speak any Spanish, google translate worked wonders!
A Fonsgrada - Hotel Portiico - a beautiful building that has been converted very sympathetically and with a free coffee machine! I ate in my favourite restaurant here, Restaurant Cantabrico, twice. Lunch and dinner! It was excellent.
O Cadavo - Pension A Marronda - recently converted to a hotel I think. Really nice clean, comfy room. The pizzas are yummy!

As others have mentioned, where the Primitivo joins the Frances you really notice a difference. I have to say that, for me, I missed the peace and tranquility of my earlier days but it was nice to see so many people enjoying it.

On a peaceful note, I queued to get into the pilgrim mass in Santiago at 12.30 and 7.30pm but both were full. Instead I went to the 7.30am. Which was, again, a beautiful experience. A slightly shorter service but very few people and time to walk round the stunning cathedral in the quiet of an early morning. If you are an English speaker, then I recommend the English mass which is held in a little chapel in the Pilgrim Office at 10.30am every day. It's on the left as you go into the Pilgrim Office. I am not religious but it was lovely to be part of the ceremony and be blessed as a pilgrim.

I think whichever way you choose to do your Camino, the Primitivo really won't disappoint. It lifts the soul and calms the spirit in a way I have never encountered. And in a world, that for me, is often chaotic and too busy, it so made me appreciate such simple things. A glass of freshly squeezed orange juice. The breeze on my feet when I've taken my sock and shoes off to rest. A Buen Camino and a smile from a local. The sight and sounds of friends welcoming you at a coffee or beer stop. A stunning sunrise at the start of a new day. When I close my eyes now it takes me back to somewhere very special. For all of you who take this route or any other, Buen Camino.
I'm glad you enjoyed this route. I did it in June and absolutely loved it.
A fantastic experience.
 
Time of past OR future Camino
Going September 2022
I returned last week from my very first, and definitely not my last, Camino. I found this forum so super helpful that I just wanted to share a few things that others might find helpful on their journey too.

Firstly, I cannot recommend this route highly enough. As my first, I can't compare it to the others, but I do know that it was magical. It is hilly, for sure, but with all day to do it, I found it very manageable. I had a mix of stage lengths from 12 miles (20k) to almost 22 miles (34k). I was really worried about the longer days but I broke them up with a mid-morning snack and coffee, a lunch break and a stop in the afternoon. In fact, as my enjoyment grew, on the short days I longed for the longer days.

I used the Wise Camino app and the Buen Camino app. The Buen Camino was particularly useful as you could tell if you'd gone away from the route.

I had my luggage carried for me by TaxiCamino. (I'd thought I'd run some stages so had extra kit, but I soon realised that that would made it pass far too quickly so abandoned that plan!). Booking was super simple, you just email your details, they send you a link to a booking site where they have added your stops and you pay. I couldn't print the labels but they added their label to my bag on the first day which was fine.

I also stayed in hotels. Having recovered from Covid a few weeks before I still had a hacking cough and didn't think anyone in a hostel would appreciate that all night. I can thoroughly recommend these:

Grado - Hotel Areces - very clean, simple rooms. Breakfast is included but as I was leaving before it started they made me a little packed breakfast to take away.
Just before Salas - La Figal de Zugabolog - this is a hostel with private rooms too. It's a beautiful space with really kind owners. It feels like being in someone's home. I ate there and the food was delicious (vegetarian too!)
Campiello - Casa Herminia - i had a private room which was simple and clean. And doubly lovely because lots of pilgrims from the Albergues were eating in the restaurant.
Berducedo - Aracelli - gorgeous room and lovely spot a little bit out of the way with a really kind owner. The food was amazing and although I don't speak any Spanish, google translate worked wonders!
A Fonsgrada - Hotel Portiico - a beautiful building that has been converted very sympathetically and with a free coffee machine! I ate in my favourite restaurant here, Restaurant Cantabrico, twice. Lunch and dinner! It was excellent.
O Cadavo - Pension A Marronda - recently converted to a hotel I think. Really nice clean, comfy room. The pizzas are yummy!

As others have mentioned, where the Primitivo joins the Frances you really notice a difference. I have to say that, for me, I missed the peace and tranquility of my earlier days but it was nice to see so many people enjoying it.

On a peaceful note, I queued to get into the pilgrim mass in Santiago at 12.30 and 7.30pm but both were full. Instead I went to the 7.30am. Which was, again, a beautiful experience. A slightly shorter service but very few people and time to walk round the stunning cathedral in the quiet of an early morning. If you are an English speaker, then I recommend the English mass which is held in a little chapel in the Pilgrim Office at 10.30am every day. It's on the left as you go into the Pilgrim Office. I am not religious but it was lovely to be part of the ceremony and be blessed as a pilgrim.

I think whichever way you choose to do your Camino, the Primitivo really won't disappoint. It lifts the soul and calms the spirit in a way I have never encountered. And in a world, that for me, is often chaotic and too busy, it so made me appreciate such simple things. A glass of freshly squeezed orange juice. The breeze on my feet when I've taken my sock and shoes off to rest. A Buen Camino and a smile from a local. The sight and sounds of friends welcoming you at a coffee or beer stop. A stunning sunrise at the start of a new day. When I close my eyes now it takes me back to somewhere very special. For all of you who take this route or any other, Buen Camino.
 

BruceNZ

Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Camino Portuguese 2012
Camino Mozarabe 2018 Granada-Merida
Camino de la Lana (2020)
Planning for June next year as an add on to the Madrid-San Salvadore in May - just wondered how you found it heat wise given that I heard reports of extreme weather in Spain in the last month ( which is somewhat different from our mild ish winter temperature here in NZ at the moment !).
Thanks Bruce
 

gittiharre

Veteran Member
Time of past OR future Camino
CF Austria Czech Le Puy Geneva RLS V. Jacobi V. Regia V. Baltica/Scandinavica Porto Muxia
Planning for June next year as an add on to the Madrid-San Salvadore in May - just wondered how you found it heat wise given that I heard reports of extreme weather in Spain in the last month ( which is somewhat different from our mild ish winter temperature here in NZ at the moment !).
Thanks Bruce
June was fab. I had 1 day of rain, heavy drizzle style and the odd shower. A couple of days were very hot. A few years ago, I walked the Madrid in May and it was wonderful. So was the Salvador at the end of May. Great combo, those 3 together.
 
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smallp

New Member
Time of past OR future Camino
July 2022, Camino Primitivo
How long did you take to do it?
I took 11 and a 1/2 days. My Stages were:

Oviedo to Grado - 25k or 15.5 miles
Grado to Salas - 22k or 14 miles
Salas to Campiello - 32.6k 0r 20.3 miles
Campiello to Berducedo (Hospitales route) - 33.6k or 20.9 miles
Berducedo to Grandas de Salime - 20.1k or 12.5 miles
Grandas to A Fonsgrada - 25.6k or 14.9 miles
A Fonsgrada to O Cadavo - 24k or 14.9 miles
Cadavo to Lugo - 30.5 km or 19 miles
Lugo to Ferreira - 26.7k or 16.5 miles
Ferreira to Melida - 20k or 12.42 miles
Melide to O pedrouzo - 33.8k or 21 miles
O Pedrouzo to Santiago - 20.5k or 12.7 miles

These are the distances from my spreadsheet - my watch recorded a little more I think. Hope that helps.
 

smallp

New Member
Time of past OR future Camino
July 2022, Camino Primitivo
Planning for June next year as an add on to the Madrid-San Salvadore in May - just wondered how you found it heat wise given that I heard reports of extreme weather in Spain in the last month ( which is somewhat different from our mild ish winter temperature here in NZ at the moment !).
Thanks Bruce
It was pretty warm, but I was at the peak of a bit of a heatwave I think. On my second day from Grado to Salas it was definitely up in the 30's. But it cooled as I got up into the hillier bits. On the Hospitales route I had to pop a jumper and a windproof on right at the top as there was a cool breeze and I had one two days where there was a bit of a misty and damp start.
 

Belle_b

New Member
Time of past OR future Camino
Sept 2022
I returned last week from my very first, and definitely not my last, Camino. I found this forum so super helpful that I just wanted to share a few things that others might find helpful on their journey too.

Firstly, I cannot recommend this route highly enough. As my first, I can't compare it to the others, but I do know that it was magical. It is hilly, for sure, but with all day to do it, I found it very manageable. I had a mix of stage lengths from 12 miles (20k) to almost 22 miles (34k). I was really worried about the longer days but I broke them up with a mid-morning snack and coffee, a lunch break and a stop in the afternoon. In fact, as my enjoyment grew, on the short days I longed for the longer days.

I used the Wise Camino app and the Buen Camino app. The Buen Camino was particularly useful as you could tell if you'd gone away from the route.

I had my luggage carried for me by TaxiCamino. (I'd thought I'd run some stages so had extra kit, but I soon realised that that would made it pass far too quickly so abandoned that plan!). Booking was super simple, you just email your details, they send you a link to a booking site where they have added your stops and you pay. I couldn't print the labels but they added their label to my bag on the first day which was fine.

I also stayed in hotels. Having recovered from Covid a few weeks before I still had a hacking cough and didn't think anyone in a hostel would appreciate that all night. I can thoroughly recommend these:

Grado - Hotel Areces - very clean, simple rooms. Breakfast is included but as I was leaving before it started they made me a little packed breakfast to take away.
Just before Salas - La Figal de Zugabolog - this is a hostel with private rooms too. It's a beautiful space with really kind owners. It feels like being in someone's home. I ate there and the food was delicious (vegetarian too!)
Campiello - Casa Herminia - i had a private room which was simple and clean. And doubly lovely because lots of pilgrims from the Albergues were eating in the restaurant.
Berducedo - Aracelli - gorgeous room and lovely spot a little bit out of the way with a really kind owner. The food was amazing and although I don't speak any Spanish, google translate worked wonders!
A Fonsgrada - Hotel Portiico - a beautiful building that has been converted very sympathetically and with a free coffee machine! I ate in my favourite restaurant here, Restaurant Cantabrico, twice. Lunch and dinner! It was excellent.
O Cadavo - Pension A Marronda - recently converted to a hotel I think. Really nice clean, comfy room. The pizzas are yummy!

As others have mentioned, where the Primitivo joins the Frances you really notice a difference. I have to say that, for me, I missed the peace and tranquility of my earlier days but it was nice to see so many people enjoying it.

On a peaceful note, I queued to get into the pilgrim mass in Santiago at 12.30 and 7.30pm but both were full. Instead I went to the 7.30am. Which was, again, a beautiful experience. A slightly shorter service but very few people and time to walk round the stunning cathedral in the quiet of an early morning. If you are an English speaker, then I recommend the English mass which is held in a little chapel in the Pilgrim Office at 10.30am every day. It's on the left as you go into the Pilgrim Office. I am not religious but it was lovely to be part of the ceremony and be blessed as a pilgrim.

I think whichever way you choose to do your Camino, the Primitivo really won't disappoint. It lifts the soul and calms the spirit in a way I have never encountered. And in a world, that for me, is often chaotic and too busy, it so made me appreciate such simple things. A glass of freshly squeezed orange juice. The breeze on my feet when I've taken my sock and shoes off to rest. A Buen Camino and a smile from a local. The sight and sounds of friends welcoming you at a coffee or beer stop. A stunning sunrise at the start of a new day. When I close my eyes now it takes me back to somewhere very special. For all of you who take this route or any other, Buen Camino.
Hi thanks for sharing your journey and your post! I am looking to do my very first Camino soon in Sept too, and despite what people say about CF being the best option for first timers, I can't take crowds very well, and very much prefer peace, nature and mountains. Hence, i'm still deciding between Norte and Primitovo. I'm leaning towards Primitovo as i have some time constraints- but I do have my worries, as I'll be going on a solo Camino. If you don't mind telling us, how much did you spend? :/ Did you book your accommodations beforehand? Thanks!
 

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