A donation to the forum removes ads for you, and supports Ivar in his work running it

Advertisement

The big map o the Caminos de Santiago

The Camino seems busy ...

Jerome74

Active Member
#1
I've just read the post (on a German forum) from someone who's walking the Camino Francès right now and who's saying that there are a LOT of people on it (lots of Germans and people from the Netherlands) and it's 'all about' a fight for a bed in the hostels. And there are always people who have to sleep on the ground. Most hostels seem to be full at around 13.00 ...

Doesn't sound too alluring ... but hey, I'm one of those newbies too, so I'm not in a position to criticize too much ;)

I will surely take my ThermaRest mattress then. At least it'll be nice one the floor then ;) And I will try not to compete with the others and maybe then even also walk in the afternoon since beds are scarce anyway!

This whole thing seems to be a good exercise to practice your (my) Zen attitude!! ;)
 

Minkey

Active Member
#2
Hmm... I think it it gets a bit like that sometimes. I've personally never witnessed it, but have heard similar reports, especially during Holy Years.

I think those who scramble for beds are missing out on something. Their journey is the entire reason why the Camino is the Camino. :roll:
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
#3
May be a reflection of how they live their lives, no matter what nationality. Best, xm 8)
 

omar504

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016,2017,2018
#4
It's probably a case of herd mentality. It was this time last year I walked the VDLP-Very few people, some albergues empty. I'm starting from Le Puy in late June but am not loooking forward to the Spanish leg.
Where's the enjoyment for the bag-rustling-up-2 hours-before-dawn-so I can get a bed by lunch time lot?
There are other routes. I think the Camino Frances has reached crisis point-25000 in August last year!
 

Jerome74

Active Member
#5
omar: yes.

but too late now for those of us who've planned to got the Francès this year ... well, we'll survive I guess ;)

It's a matter of flexibility. As I said, I don't intend to participate in this sprinting contest! And if people keep waking me up at 2.00 am because they're getting ready to start their walk then I'll go to hotels whenever possible ... that's not what I intended but if there's no other solution to avoid the extremists ... I can't walk if I don't get the rest I need ...
 

AndyF

New Member
#6
Having read this thread it put's me off a bit if its getting really busy
Some solitude and time for contemplation are key for me

I am planning to go Triacastela to SdC in early Sept (start walking on the 8th Sept) - will it still be very busy ??

If you can always be pretty much guaranteed to get a roof over your head then why live by the clock?

I may have to consider the Camino Portuguese ?

thanks

Andy F
 

Jerome74

Active Member
#7
Andy Faint said:
Having read this thread it put's me off a bit if its getting really busy
Some solitude and time for contemplation are key for me
Yeah, for me too. I don't want to spoil the fun but reports like the one I cited above worry me a bit. That's the problem if too many people are looking for solitude and contemplation in the same space ... But I'll go there anyway now.

I am planning to go Triacastela to SdC in early Sept (start walking on the 8th Sept) - will it still be very busy ??
I don't know that route but September will surely be more quiet again.

If you can always be pretty much guaranteed to get a roof over your head then why live by the clock?
Because they all want a bed (and not only a roof over their heads)? When people think that something is scarce they get hectic ...

Have a nice day though! :)

Jerome
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
#8
Andy Faint, the Camino Portuges is always a historic, beautiful, viable, option. Should u include the Camino de Fisterra, add on magic to ur experience. On the other hand, don't let the massification of pilgrims discourage u. In my experience when it gets like that its mostly in albergues where u have to confront it. Then, when u see too many pilgrims walking, u can always get ahead or behind them and walk in solitude. Also, u may want to think about the poss. of walking the Camino Aragones if u have time, it flows into the CF. It's a road less traveled, beautiful, hisotric. Solitude is a most magnificent thing there. Best, xm 8)
 

Ulysse

Active Member
#9
Andy F

Triacastela to SdC in early Sept (start walking on the 8th Sept) - will it still be very busy
As I did that strech in mid Sept 06 I found it was very pleasant; week ends more busy but mondays were so wonderful :lol:

guaranteed to get a roof over your head
I ALWAYS had a roof over my head and I used almost exclusively municipal, parish refugios and sometimes private ones. I did manage without problems. When I look back I worried way too much as there was always something available.
After Sarria there are more people on the Camino (last 100 km to get a Compostela...), but there again there are places to spend the night all over the countryside.

Do not be put off by some comments... just do what you want to do and you will enjoy and remember for ever this pilgrimage.

Buen camino
 

Minkey

Active Member
#10
I'm with Ulysee on this one. That time of the year shouldn't be a problem. You're always going to get the Sarria lot coming in, but never really presented me with any problems, either.
 

Minkey

Active Member
#12
With those fresh legs, clean white trousers (no laughing at the back, I've seen it with my own eyes!), small day packs, a spring in their newly shoed steps, a vocal "buen Camino!" and a total lack of understanding as to what real pain is! That said and done, it's their Camino.... I shouldn't appear so judgemental.
 

marktqm

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2006)
#14
Minkey is right. Sarria starters are easy to recognize as they walk straight and don't avoid the stones on the path. And when they reach Santiago they're still fresh, wishing they had walked a longer distance.

Jerome, perhaps a lot of people are observed on the camino this week because of the May 1 long weekend. Many will be starting at this time and the numbers will probably temporarily decline for a bit after the May 5-6 weekend.

Mark
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
#16
May 1...numbers...decline...
...to duplicate towards the end of July if not before and then triplicate + in August, when so many peregrinos/turigrinos/bicigrinos/K9grinos/gatogrinos, r on vacation. Let's not forget us, too...

Best, xm 8)
 
#17
:-(

I guess it happens with everything. Popularity is a burden more than a blessing, I'd say.
We will do the CF this year, and next time definitely some of the alternative routes that are still less frequented.
 

KiwiNomad06

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Le Puy-Santiago(2008) Cluny-Conques+prt CF(2012)
#18
Jerome74 said:
I've just read the post (on a German forum) from someone who's walking the Camino Francès right now and who's saying that there are a LOT of people on it (lots of Germans and people from the Netherlands) and it's 'all about' a fight for a bed in the hostels. And there are always people who have to sleep on the ground. Most hostels seem to be full at around 13.00 ...

)
Jerome, maybe whoever is posting is sort of in 'lock step' with a bulge in early May groups. Perhaps by waiting a day or two somewhere, that bulge can be avoided?
 
#19
it is busy

met an american women returning her donkey, could have sworn I put a posting about this but it has disappeared! She said she could not believe the amount of pilgrims she saw, there are many many germans and dutch too. I was sat in the garden here in San Nicolas Real Camino writing my journal and it was full of germans and dutch in loud conversation! no offence intended!

i met some adolescents from a school in vallodollid, a group of 15, who had started in burgos and were going as far as sahagun.

it must be a holiday for germans or something but they have a strong presence here on the camino.

buen camino
 

Jupp

New Member
#20
Jerome74 said:
I've just read the post (on a German forum) from someone who's walking the Camino Francès right now and who's saying that there are a LOT of people on it (lots of Germans and people from the Netherlands) and it's 'all about' a fight for a bed in the hostels. And there are always people who have to sleep on the ground. Most hostels seem to be full at around 13.00 ...

Jerome,
It might be that more germans are on the Camino this year (due to the "success" of Harpe Kerkelings book, bestseller last year although far from reality!) According to statistics, May and June are not as full as July and August. We (a couple) walked in August/September 2006 and never had to sleep on the ground, so don't worry too much about that. On the other side, getting up at 02.00 or later and walking in the dark (even with a torch) could be dangerous on stony places, and in my opinion absurd, you'll miss all the beautiful landscapes !
Jupp
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
#23
...and Spaniards, and French, and English, and Brazilians, and Italians, and... :D Best, xm 8)
 
#24
Lodging Availability

Hi all

Have just finished the Camino starting from SJPP - the numbers of pilgrims on the trek grew noticeably as you got closer to Santiago. More importantly, we noticed that if we stayed at "non popular" alburgues, we almost had the place to ourselves. By "non popular" I mean alburgues that are not located in the key towns. We either walked a little longer (or shorter) on a particular day to finish at one of the less high profile villages and reaped the benefits of a more relaxed environment.
Enjoy
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
#25
stayed at "non popular" alburgues...had the place to ourselves...not ...in the key towns....walked...longer (or shorter)...less high profile villages ...benefits of a more relaxed environment.
Welcome home, jpq2001au :!: U discovered a well-guarded secret :!: :!: Hope u share ur experiences with us. Buen Camino, xm 8)
 
#27
Hi all,

Im planning to travel in September from france From reading this thread I presume the Lepuy route probably wont be too busy at that time.

Im travelling alone so half the fun will be meeting new people but I dont would want my walk to be comparable to queuing for a ride in disneyland. For this reason I thought about walking the Arles route as an alternative. Now im wondering whether this is over reacting a bit and maybe the Arles route would be a bit lonely.

Not too concerned though, either way should be beautiful. If I had to choose I think I'd take solitude over crowds of tourists.
 

omar504

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016,2017,2018
#29
I will be walking the Le Puy route from late June and am dreading the hordes on the CF-funny how thousands of people want solitude but go where the most people are-and then they worry whether they will be 'safe' or have time for 'solitude'-people are strange.
 

marktqm

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2006)
#30
Great point, omar, if people want safety AND solitude, they can shut themselves in their own homes and cut off the telephone line (assuming, of course, that there are no spouse and kids).

Getting out of one's comfort zone is one aspect of the camino experience. Dangers will always lurk somewhere, that's a reality. But we have fellow pilgrims and hospitaleros (and St James) to make sure things will be all right.

Mark
(thinking of trekking through Bhutan, where tigers live)
 
#34
seems to me a busy camino is a wonderful opportunity to practice 'walking your walk'/'being who you want to be'/'doing your thing' amids others and different engergies. which is where we all go when we leave the camino, return home, to work etc.

in other words, it is easier to be loving, patient, kind, open and selfless... when it's just you. (or a few others)

often (at least for me) the hardest part of those undenably life altering, never to be forgotten experiences (which i expect the camino to be.) is returning to a world where people have different priorities.

a busy camino might allow you do build a skill you'll certainly need to draw on later. (at least this is how I'm looking at it!)
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
#35
So true, buena! In so many ways I feel that the Camino is a metaphor for life, you experience it in a similar way as you lead your life. I also believe it is a reflection of whatever it may be one could be dealing with in the world of reality. I was just sharing with a friend that my first Camino had such a strong personal impact, that, upon returning home, I did not want to leave my house for days and when I did I had lost my sense of direction around town, and spent I don't know how many hours crying. I was going through a lot of personal turmoil then. I credit that first Road for guiding me through that storm. My returns have been easier for some time, turmoil no longer an issue. People and work are not so hard to relate with anymore. To the (banal) question: "How was Spain?" I just say, "fine." I know there's no interest on the one hand, and on the other, there's no frame of reference to begin to understand an experience so profound. Invariably, I ask, "how was Disneyworld?" and...well, u can imagine the answers there, going on and on and... No put down there, hey, we all have our Caminos. And would u believe it, what never would have happened before, I listen and listen, patiently, my mind of course being u know where across the seas. Am just glad my Camino ain't located in Orlando! Best, xm 8)
 

Jerome74

Active Member
#36
buena: You got a point there! It'll be a good exercise in remaining zen ... :)

And there'll be the occasional lonely moment ... That's at least what I hope ... even if it means to actively look for it (going for little walk alone in the evening) etc

D-10 for me now! :)
 
#37
What I was looking for...

Saludos a todos!

Finally!
I've been looking for information on the jacobeo... problem is there are soooo many webpages about it that it's hard to find specific info. What I needed was some statistics, and in the old version of your page I found this:
http://www.santiago-today.com/santiago_article.cfm?art_id=302

Very useful!
Thanks.
I'll be walking mid june for two weeks and also wish for some contemplation rather than racing for beds... I thought I'd be there before peak season, but realised that those who want to be in Santiago by July 26th will start approx at the same time as I! :wink:
I'm thinking of chosing another way, maybe Via Plata. Or start out in Roncesvalles and if it's too crowded for my taste simply take a bus to somewhere less crowded.

I've been travelling in Spain a lot by bus and train, never walked though!
Never been without shelter, not even in July. Sometimes I had to stay in a more expensive place than my usual 15-30 € hostales, or a bit far from everything, but that adds to the adventure!

Looking forward to walking with you - not all at the same time of course... :roll:

...and I will use my oldest walking boots. But possibly a new, smaller backpack.
 
#39
It's an article from an old version of santiago.today.com, I think?
I found it by googling for "Camino de Santiago" + statistics.

I've been googling so much for camino-info the last days, so I look like this :shock:
Anywy, I've not decided on which way to go yet, but it seems that as I have limited time starting in Roncesvalles will give me one day less of actually walking, so for that reason as well, I'm considering different options.
Looking into El primitivo at the moment.
 
#41
Ivar can speak for himslef on this one but as I understand it, Santiago-today.com is a promotional website owned and run by Ivar as a private enterprise through which he generates advertising revenue. The Forum is a service provided by the website. Si?
 

sillydoll

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
2002 CF: 2004 from Paris: 2006 VF: 2007 CF: 2009 Aragones, Ingles, Finisterre: 2011 X 2 on CF: 2013 'Caracoles': 2014 CF and Ingles 'Caracoles":2015 Logrono-Burgos (Hospitalero San Anton): 2016 La Douay to Aosta/San Gimignano to Rome:
#43
Getting busier every day

This is a report from a pilgrim on the road:

"In Larrasoña I got the last bed because a Dutchman and Frenchman who had a shared room in a pension took pity on me as I limped in with a minor injury and talked to the owner who allowed me to share their space. A bunch of taxis were shuttling peregrinos to Pamplona to find places. Today I got one of the last room in Navarrete although I was here a bit after 1pm!!! Many people could not even find places in the next town of Ventosa. This also happened in Uterga where I stayed (a wonderful place by the way). It seems like you have to find a place before 1pm or risk not having anything. I wonder how it will be after Sarria? I have the luxury of time, so I can walk just 20km. Those who want to walk more must either wake up very early or book some alternate accommodations at a hotel as a Plan B if the albergue is full.
But the poppies are just as beautiful as ever and I have met many wonderful people and heard many incredible Camino Stories...and was even spontaniously invited by a group of Vascones to a get together at a friend's house. There are many gifts to be had here...you only have to choose to open them."
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
#44
That's incredible info, Sil, thanks for sharing. I had no idea the Camino was so popular April-May (my experience is limited to summer + winter). Maybe it's not so bad to walk June +... 19 more "sleeps-" luv that word! Best, xm 8)
 

Jerome74

Active Member
#46
Actually that really makes me feel weird ...

A bunch of taxis were shuttling peregrinos to Pamplona to find places. Today I got one of the last room in Navarrete although I was here a bit after 1pm!!! Many people could not even find places in the next town of Ventosa. This also happened in Uterga where I stayed (a wonderful place by the way). It seems like you have to find a place before 1pm or risk not having anything.
Is it like Disneyland this year?

I know I shouldn't complain, I'm one of the many new ones ... But this looks like a lot of stress. I'm really doubting now :(
 

Jerome74

Active Member
#48
Darn. I like people. But not MASSES of people ...

But that's my problem I guess, not theirs.

And since I've got the tickets and everything I will start it anyway. I hope it's not as bad as I'm imagining right now.

Yeah, I tend to whine sometimes ;)
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
#51
Ok, I've heard the reports re: there being so many pilgrims... But I don't think it's impossibly crowded. I've only seen it like that after Arzua. Even then I remember letting the hordes (mostly turigrinos there) pass by and walk alone after them. Somebody from the Camino just wrote a suggestion to the effect of either starting to walk as early as poss and/or walking further in the PM, that's two ways. On the other hand, to whatever extent it is crowded, so be it & let's enjoy it, ain't much else we can do about that. Best, xm 8)
 

Jerome74

Active Member
#52
xm said:
On the other hand, to whatever extent it is crowded, so be it & let's enjoy it, ain't much else we can do about that. Best, xm 8)
You're right ... But I'm so not the herd guy (ok, then it was probably already a mistake to choose the CF, I know) ... I'll just have to take it as another challenge then I guess ;)
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
#55
Fasten ur seatbelt peregrino, u ain't seen nothin' yet! Best, xm What do you mean?
Well, among other things, I believe that the Camino presents us with challenges to meet (or not) and lessons to learn, ignore, or perhaps to understand later on. It's up to us what we do about them. Best, xm 8)
 
#58
Mate its crazy busy, its true bout the alburgues being full very early, im trying to get the days walk done as early as possible and usually finish round 12 anyway, i like the nice cool mornings but this is definitely not what i imagined my camino experience to be like.. the constant stream of traffic that im overtaking or being overtaken by, and the amount of toilet paper just a meter or so from the side of the track makes me wonder what happens to people toilet habits once that arrive in spain?!
 

Ulysse

Active Member
#59
This is mad ! The CF seems to really be victim of its popularity and of uncivilized persons.

What happens when one gets to Sarria this year ? Is it going to be like a shopping center on Saturdays afternoon...
 
#60
Ok, so I am only as far as Puente La Reina, but after Roncesvalles, it does not seem so busy. Yes there are lots of pilgrims, but I see that as more opportunity for help if I need anything.

None of the alberques that I have stayed in have been full yet.

Will keep you posted.

Lora :arrow:
 

sillydoll

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
2002 CF: 2004 from Paris: 2006 VF: 2007 CF: 2009 Aragones, Ingles, Finisterre: 2011 X 2 on CF: 2013 'Caracoles': 2014 CF and Ingles 'Caracoles":2015 Logrono-Burgos (Hospitalero San Anton): 2016 La Douay to Aosta/San Gimignano to Rome:
#62
NO ROOM AT THE INN

This was posted on another Forum:

Two years ago, I remember the smiles all around as Camino friends reached the refugio. Now I have seen looks of disappointment and sometimes dispair as tired pilgrims are turned away. In Castrojeriz a person even broke down and sobbed as there were apparently no places to be found and the weather was obviously changing. It is these looks instead of the smiles that hurt me so much. I am fortunate that I have some resources that I could stay somewhere else in an emergency...but even that is not enough because that night there were NO beds available at any price.

The next day the rain drove me into the albergue at Boadilla, which is operated by a wonderful family. I found a place, and that was good because the word out was that Fromista was also "booked out".

The strange thing is that I do not notice that there are more people on the road than two years ago. I am not the first or the last to leave the albergue, and walk at a faster than average pace, but the only crowds I encounter are in the places near the albergues. Some people say that the book that was published in German and was very popular (by some show business personality) caused a lot of part time pilgrims to take to the road. I don´t know. I am sure that the Camino has been many things over the centuries, but I would wager it was never a "fad", like it seems to be today.
 
#63
Busy Camino

Just returned and it is very busy, and alberques are always full by 14:00, so, as stated, the race was on, I noticed mostly the German's wanting to be first at everything, but the Camino is a place to learn tolerance and patience, I only went to Burgos partly due to the crowds and partly due to a back problem. The walk is beautiful and so inspiring, just wish I had been better prepared for the lack of peacefulness due to crowding in May.
 

omar504

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016,2017,2018
#64
It seems pretty self evident-if you want crowds then the CF is for you. If not any other route will be more tranquil.
 

OLDER threads on this topic




A few items available from the Camino Forum Store




Advertisement

Booking.com

Latest posts

Most downloaded Resources

Forum Rules

Forum Rules

Camino Forum Store

Camino Forum Store

Casa Ivar Newsletter

Forum Donation

Forum Donation
For those with no forum account, it is possible to donate here as well. Thank you for your support! Ivar

Follow Casa Ivar on Instagram

When is the best time to walk?

  • January

    Votes: 11 1.4%
  • February

    Votes: 5 0.6%
  • March

    Votes: 35 4.5%
  • April

    Votes: 114 14.5%
  • May

    Votes: 191 24.3%
  • June

    Votes: 55 7.0%
  • July

    Votes: 15 1.9%
  • August

    Votes: 12 1.5%
  • September

    Votes: 236 30.0%
  • October

    Votes: 96 12.2%
  • November

    Votes: 11 1.4%
  • December

    Votes: 5 0.6%
Top