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Thinking Lourdes to Canfranc

Camino(s) past & future
September 2016
#1
@JimmyH get yourself a copy of Miam Miam Dodo (or download the App) for the Le Puy route and you will get a compkete list of all accommodation within 5km of the trail. You can select the type of accommodation and book ahead as far ahead as you like. Available here
@JimmyH get yourself a copy of Miam Miam Dodo (or download the App) for the Le Puy route and you will get a compkete list of all accommodation within 5km of the trail. You can select the type of accommodation and book ahead as far ahead as you like. Available here
Kanga, I am not familiar with
Miam Miam Dodo. Could you please tell me what this is? I don't have a smart phone. I would like to walk from Lourdres down to the CSJ Arles route, through Somport/Canfranc Estacion. I would like to know if there is a "route" and a way, with room/food options. Thank you very much!!!
Elisabeth
 

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NorthernLight

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Le Puy to Santiago via the Frances 2012-2013. EPW2015
Aragonese & Frances 2016
Burgos to Muxia 2017
#2
Miam Miam Dodo is a guidebook series produced by the yellow crayon company. . . They are basically a series of maps in book form, with a listing of all services within 5 km of the trail that you might need. It uses a format that is easy enough for non-French speakers to still be able to understand it, as it uses a map-esque legend, or key, to list the info.

They have a few books, covering the various French trails and one for Spain.

Miam Miam Dodo translates to Yummy Yummy Sleep. I used it for the Le Puy trail and it was all I needed.
 

Kanga

Moderator
Staff member
Donating Member
Camino(s) past & future
Francés x 5, Le Puy x 2, Arles, Tours, Norte, Madrid, Via de la Plata.
#3
@elisabethfarre there is a Miam Miam Dodo guide published for the Arles route. It is quite a solitary camino, not much travelled. You could have a browse through the threads in the Arles section of the forum - Lourdes is not on the route but there is a detour. See, for example this thread

Edited - posts moved to aporopriate section of the forum
 
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A

AJ

Guest
#4
I would like to walk from Lourdres down to the CSJ Arles route, through Somport/Canfranc Estacion. I would like to know if there is a "route" and a way, with room/food options. Thank you very much!!!
Elisabeth
There is a route:Lourdes, Saint-Pe-de-Bigorre,Bruges, Buzy, Oloron Sainte-Marie.

You join the Arles route at Oloron. I used the Lepere guide between Lourdes and Oloron (La Voie des Piemonts) and the CSJ guide after that.
 

Anniesantiago

Veteran Member
Donating Member
Camino(s) past & future
Nearly every year since 2006, often walking more than one route. 2018 will be Camino #14.
#5
Kanga, I am not familiar with
Miam Miam Dodo. Could you please tell me what this is? I don't have a smart phone. I would like to walk from Lourdres down to the CSJ Arles route, through Somport/Canfranc Estacion. I would like to know if there is a "route" and a way, with room/food options. Thank you very much!!!
Elisabeth
It is a beautiful route!
I walked it several years ago.
Here is a link to our blog with photos and some info on lodgings:
http://caminosantiago2.blogspot.com/2012/05/lourdes-again.html

It is well marked and there are lodgings, but I suggest you book ahead at most of them.
A bit of French would be helpful also.
 

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zzotte

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
2012 Camino Frances, 2014 Lourdes to SDC, 2016 Camino del Norte
#6
Its a beautiful camino from Lourdes, the nicest people I have ever met was at Lourdes albergue I think its called La Ruche, I walked in 2013 I got lost a few times between Lourdes and Oloron Sainte-Marie due to conflicting markings and since I speak almost no French was not easy either but overall was great, do it :)

Zzotte
 
Camino(s) past & future
September 2016
#7
There is a route:Lourdes, Saint-Pe-de-Bigorre,Bruges, Buzy, Oloron Sainte-Marie.

You join the Arles route at Oloron. I used the Lepere guide between Lourdes and Oloron (La Voie des Piemonts) and the CSJ guide after that.
Its a beautiful camino from Lourdes, the nicest people I have ever met was at Lourdes albergue I think its called La Ruche, I walked in 2013 I got lost a few times between Lourdes and Oloron Sainte-Marie due to conflicting markings and since I speak almost no French was not easy either but overall was great, do it :)

Zzotte
So happy to hear this!
Thanks so very much!!!
 
Camino(s) past & future
September 2016
#8
There is a route:Lourdes, Saint-Pe-de-Bigorre,Bruges, Buzy, Oloron Sainte-Marie.

You join the Arles route at Oloron. I used the Lepere guide between Lourdes and Oloron (La Voie des Piemonts) and the CSJ guide after that.
This is exactly what I've been looking for! Thank you so very much AJ!
 
Camino(s) past & future
September 2016
#9
@elisabethfarre there is a Miam Miam Dodo guide published for the Arles route. It is quite a solitary camino, not much travelled. You could have a browse through the threads in the Arles section of the forum - Lourdes is not on the route but there is a detour. See, for example this thread

Edited - posts moved to aporopriate section of the forum
Thank you very much Kanga! I was looking for more solitary route. :)
 

Albertagirl

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Donating Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (2015); Ch. d'Arles: Oloron Ste Marie to Aragones; Frances (2016); V.d.l.P.; Sanabres (2017)
#10
I am considering walking the Camino Frances again this year, following the Aragones to Puenta la Reina and before that through the Somport Pass, possibly beginning at Oloron Ste Marie. I am finding the multiple locations on the forum for information on this route and the insistence of the moderators on moving posts to their appropriate locations very frustrating. Is it possible to ask: 1. How could I get to Oloron Ste Marie? Where would I fly into how could I arrange ground travel? Where could I find information about the route from there to the Somport Pass? 2. the route through the Somport Pass: eg. is there a passable route for an experienced mountain hiker? How far would I have to walk before I could find an albergue (or gite?)? Would I have to carry camping gear in order to avoid having to walk 30 k or more per day through a difficult mountainous route? I am in good health and an experienced mountain hiker, but I am also 67 years old and would find it a challenge to walk 30 k. or more in mountainous territory, especially on the first day of a lengthy trek. 3. Once I am through the Somport Pass, where and how does the route join the Camino Aragones? Is that route well marked and easy to follow, with enough albergues at a reasonable distance apart? I have the Eroski Consumer camino app, which includes the Camino Aragones, but the app is very unreliable and sometimes (like right now) refuses to function at all. This route seems to me to be an obvious and brief prelude to the camino frances for someone looking to find an additional and more solitary route over the Pyrenees. Clearly, it is part of various traditional long pilgrimage routes, but information finding is challenging with the current divisions of forum locations and applicable guidebooks. I am at the very preliminary stage of considering this route.
Any help would be much appreciated.
 

Kanga

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Staff member
Donating Member
Camino(s) past & future
Francés x 5, Le Puy x 2, Arles, Tours, Norte, Madrid, Via de la Plata.
#11
@Albertagirl the easiest is to fly into Pau and catch a train to Oloron Ste Marie. The train takes about half an hour. Or you could walk from Pau - the Arles route goes through Pau to Oloron Ste Marie.

The route to the Somport Pass is the Route from Arles - it is one of the four historic Camino routes mentioned by Amery Picard in the Codex Calixtius (the via Tolosane). It is not mountaineering, it is today a well marked trail and one of France's Grand Randonees - the GR653. There are guidebooks for it, in French, but with good maps - Topo and Sentier . There is a dedicated Miam Miam Dodo book for the GR653 which tells you every bit of accommodation with 5 km of the trail. You will not have to camp.

The Arles route becomes the Camino Aragones once it crosses the border into Spain.

This thread should help: https://www.caminodesantiago.me/community/threads/michelin-guide-for-the-arles-route.32060/

I am not sure why you are finding it frustrating to be put in the correct section of the forum!
 

Albertagirl

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Camino(s) past & future
Frances (2015); Ch. d'Arles: Oloron Ste Marie to Aragones; Frances (2016); V.d.l.P.; Sanabres (2017)
#12
@Albertagirl the easiest is to fly into Pau and catch a train to Oloron Ste Marie. The train takes about half an hour. Or you could walk from Pau - the Arles route goes through Pau to Oloron Ste Marie.

The route to the Somport Pass is the Route from Arles - it is one of the four historic Camino routes mentioned by Amery Picard in the Codex Calixtius (the via Tolosane). It is not mountaineering, it is today a well marked trail and one of France's Grand Randonees - the GR653. There are guidebooks for it, in French, but with good maps - Topo and Sentier . There is a dedicated Miam Miam Dodo book for the GR653 which tells you every bit of accommodation with 5 km of the trail. You will not have to camp.

The Arles route becomes the Camino Aragones once it crosses the border into Spain.

This thread should help: https://www.caminodesantiago.me/community/threads/michelin-guide-for-the-arles-route.32060/

I am not sure why you are finding it frustrating to be put in the correct section of the forum!
@Kanga,
Thank you very much for your help. It is a big move for me to go from a straightforward single route to a combination of different routes and I was getting quite confused. What I found about the Somport route included various comments from persons who had walked it indicating that the road was too narrow and dangerous with traffic and the path was impassible in places. I would really like to hear from recent walkers about the state of the path. Daily walking distances between albergues seem far for me, given that this is walking through a mountain pass. Two years ago, I found myself compelled to overnight on a mountain in New Zealand without adequate gear because the challenges of the route combined with my own inability to get to the next hut before dark forced me to stop. I do not want this to happen again and I am competent and experienced to camp on a mountainside if I have proper gear.
At the moment, I am considering the information given on one post indicating that there is a bus from Spain going to Somport. For my return flight, Madrid seems most convenient to western Canada from Santiago and I want to keep travel to and from my camino as simple as possible. I am still feeling confused but will no doubt sort it all out over time, with the help of others on this forum. I suddenly decided that I am able to do another camino and jumped in feet first, without the lengthy lurking on the forum that gave me so much information before my previous camino. I plan on walking in the fall again, so paths should be relatively dry and snow-free in the Pyrenees. Thanks again and I should like to hear from anyone who has walked any part of this route as far as Puente la Reina about their experiences on the trail and the distances between albergues. What do you see as the advantage of going through Pau to Oloron and was it easy to get a booking to Pau and a return booking to connect to a North American flight? Thanks to anyone with information.
 

Alan Pearce

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Aragones 2008, del Norte 2009, VdlP 2011, Ingles 2014, Camino de Madri 2015, Frances 2017
#13
Hi @Albertagirl

You asked for recent experience of the walk to Somport, and I' sorry I don't have that, having walked it in 2008. But there may be a couple of things you can use.

I flew from Paris to Pau, which is a big city and has regular flights from Paris. I walked from Pau airport to Lescar [about 12 km] and through the tourist bureau got a credential and directions to the albergue. Next day walked 34 km to Oloron [a very big town]. Then 22 km to Sarrance, and the next day [including backtracking] something over 40 km to Somport Pass. I walked on the main road and stayed off the tracks [which were wet and slippery] in order to do better time, and the only place where the road was narrow and dangerous was closer to Somport after the turn-off from the tunnel under the mountain.

Somport Pass is higher than the crossing over the Pyrenees to Roncesvalles but don't be taken in by the romance of the name - the road up to it is long and continuous but rarely if ever very steep. There are not big mountains either side of the pass itself - the photo on the left is of the scene on the morning of April 7th, and the little figure in the centre is a metal statue of a pilgrim looking west toward Santiago.

I bought the Confraternity of St. James guide of Arles to Puenta la Reina [ Part 2 -Toulouse to Puenta la Reina] which I was going to use if I walked from Arles - it covers this route - the edition I have is 2011 and may be updated by now. In any case I am sure lots of other people will have more recent news than mine.

P.S. I loved the albergue at Arres, after you get past Jaca.

Alan

Be brave. Life is joyous.
 

Albertagirl

Veteran Member
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Camino(s) past & future
Frances (2015); Ch. d'Arles: Oloron Ste Marie to Aragones; Frances (2016); V.d.l.P.; Sanabres (2017)
#14
Hi @Albertagirl

You asked for recent experience of the walk to Somport, and I' sorry I don't have that, having walked it in 2008. But there may be a couple of things you can use.

I flew from Paris to Pau, which is a big city and has regular flights from Paris. I walked from Pau airport to Lescar [about 12 km] and through the tourist bureau got a credential and directions to the albergue. Next day walked 34 km to Oloron [a very big town]. Then 22 km to Sarrance, and the next day [including backtracking] something over 40 km to Somport Pass. I walked on the main road and stayed off the tracks [which were wet and slippery] in order to do better time, and the only place where the road was narrow and dangerous was closer to Somport after the turn-off from the tunnel under the mountain.

Somport Pass is higher than the crossing over the Pyrenees to Roncesvalles but don't be taken in by the romance of the name - the road up to it is long and continuous but rarely if ever very steep. There are not big mountains either side of the pass itself - the photo on the left is of the scene on the morning of April 7th, and the little figure in the centre is a metal statue of a pilgrim looking west toward Santiago.

I bought the Confraternity of St. James guide of Arles to Puenta la Reina [ Part 2 -Toulouse to Puenta la Reina] which I was going to use if I walked from Arles - it covers this route - the edition I have is 2011 and may be updated by now. In any case I am sure lots of other people will have more recent news than mine.

P.S. I loved the albergue at Arres, after you get past Jaca.

Alan

Be brave. Life is joyous.

Thank you very much, Alan:
I am going to look into flights to Pau and whether I can possibly fly back to Canada from Madrid with the same airline. I really like the idea of approaching the Camino Frances through a different, less busy, walking route over the Pyrenees -
see my picture to the left of me going over a pass in the Rocky Mountains.
The guidebook from the Confraternity of St James which you mention seems well designed for helping a pilgrim follow this route. Some of your days seem rather long for me, especially in a climb towards a pass. I shall be looking for information about accommodation after shorter days. I appreciate your comments on the safety of walking by the road, as I prefer to have options. I shall look into this route more thoroughly before I decide on whether to follow it, but your information is very helpful in continuing my research and making my decision. Thanks again.
 

Kanga

Moderator
Staff member
Donating Member
Camino(s) past & future
Francés x 5, Le Puy x 2, Arles, Tours, Norte, Madrid, Via de la Plata.
#15
@Albertagirl we did not walk it but traversed it by car - we'd walked from the Mediterranean to Oloron Ste Marie and had run out of time but still wanted to see what it was like. As we got out of the valley a heavy fog came down and we were virtually blind. It was quite terrifying. A narrow winding road was all I recall, with very few cars.
 
C

Castilian

Guest
#16
How could I get to Oloron Ste Marie?
From Madrid, you can take a train to Zaragoza, another one from Zaragoza to Canfranc (Estación) and the SNCF bus from Canfranc (Estación) to Oloron ST Marie. It may require an overnight stay along the route though. Zaragoza could be a good place to stay overnight if you couldn't make all the route from Madrid in a single day.

I am considering the information given on one post indicating that there is a bus from Spain going to Somport.
Yes, there are buses to Somport from Jaca and Canfranc Estación (same bus. It starts the route in Jaca and stops in Canfranc Estación along the route). You can reach Jaca from Zaragoza by bus or train and you can reach Canfranc Estación from Zaragoza by train.
 

Albertagirl

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Camino(s) past & future
Frances (2015); Ch. d'Arles: Oloron Ste Marie to Aragones; Frances (2016); V.d.l.P.; Sanabres (2017)
#17
From Madrid, you can take a train to Zaragoza, another one from Zaragoza to Canfranc (Estación) and the SNCF bus from Canfranc (Estación) to Oloron ST Marie. It may require an overnight stay along the route though. Zaragoza could be a good place to stay overnight if you couldn't make all the route from Madrid in a single day.



Yes, there are buses to Somport from Jaca and Canfranc Estación (same bus. It starts the route in Jaca and stops in Canfranc Estación along the route). You can reach Jaca from Zaragoza by bus or train and you can reach Canfranc Estación from Zaragoza by train.
Thanks, @Castilian:
As I look into it, this becomes more and more possible. Air Canada has a connection to Pau, which seems to me to be a good place at which to begin the route. However, Air Canada has no connection to Santiago and the flight back from Madrid leaves at 6:10 am, which means being at the airport at least two hours ahead and could be very inconvenient. I have lots of time to think about it and will be looking for better connections at a reasonable price for the return flight. Thanks again.
 
C

Castilian

Guest
#18
However, Air Canada has no connection to Santiago and the flight back from Madrid leaves at 6:10 am, which means being at the airport at least two hours ahead and could be very inconvenient.
Look for Air Canada's connections out of Porto.

Another option you may consider is to fly from A Coruña to London with Vueling and from London to Canada with Air Canada although that may mean an overnight stay in London to play it safe with connections (being two separate bookings you would need to look for expensive alternatives on the spot if you miss your flight to Canada due to a late arrival of your Vueling flight)... To fly out of Porto with a single ticket would be a better option if it isn't too expensive, IMHO.
 

Albertagirl

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Camino(s) past & future
Frances (2015); Ch. d'Arles: Oloron Ste Marie to Aragones; Frances (2016); V.d.l.P.; Sanabres (2017)
#19
Look for Air Canada's connections out of Porto.

Another option you may consider is to fly from A Coruña to London with Vueling and from London to Canada with Air Canada although that may mean an overnight stay in London to play it safe with connections (being two separate bookings you would need to look for expensive alternatives on the spot if you miss your flight to Canada due to a late arrival of your Vueling flight)... To fly out of Porto with a single ticket would be a better option if it isn't too expensive, IMHO.
@Castilian:
I have found a return flight from Bilbao to Calgary via Air Canada which leaves Bilbao at 11:00 am. As Bilbao is closer to Santiago than Madrid and is a major city, I do not anticipate any travel difficulties. Unfortunately, both routes involve two changes of flights. This would not matter, except that I got sick on the flights back from Madrid Nov. 30 and have not recovered yet. Many hours in transit does not seem to agree with me anymore. Perhaps I can arrange to spend a night in an airport hotel in Bilbao before my return flight, rather than spending the night on a bus as I did getting to Madrid from Santiago. In any case, my plans seem to be coming together, although I have not yet booked or finalized anything. I am waiting for my guidebook to arrive by mail to give me a better idea whether I am choosing a route suitable to my abilities. Thanks again for your help in planning.
 
C

Castilian

Guest
#20
As Bilbao is closer to Santiago than Madrid and is a major city, I do not anticipate any travel difficulties.
No travel difficulties from Santiago de Compostela to Bilbao but:

  • Buses from Santiago de Compostela to Madrid take less time than buses from Santiago de Compostela to Bilbao so no saving on time.
  • Porto airport is even closer to Santiago de Compostela and you can find flights with Air Canada back home. As I said above, probably the best bet if fares are reasonable.
P.S.: If you want a single change of planes, take a look at the option of flying from A Coruña to London with Vueling and from London to Calgary with Air Canada that I quoted on my previous post. Don't overlook the caveats I also quoted though.
 
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Albertagirl

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Camino(s) past & future
Frances (2015); Ch. d'Arles: Oloron Ste Marie to Aragones; Frances (2016); V.d.l.P.; Sanabres (2017)
#21
No travel difficulties from Santiago de Compostela to Bilbao but:

  • Buses from Santiago de Compostela to Madrid take less time than buses from Santiago de Compostela to Bilbao so no saving on time.
  • Porto airport is even closer to Santiago de Compostela and you can find flights with Air Canada back home. They'll mean two change of planes along the route (Frankfurt and a Canadian airport; most likely Toronto) too. As I said above, probably the best bet if fares are reasonable.
P.S.: If you want a single change of planes, take a look at the option of flying from A Coruña to London with Vueling and from London to Calgary with Air Canada that I quoted on my previous post. Don't overlook the caveats I also quoted though.
Thanks, again,
I looked up Porto on the Air Canada website before I looked for anything in Spain and found Bilbao. Air Canada does not currently list any flights from Porto, so I thought that Bilbao was my best choice. I probably won't book for a bit, so I shall try another search before I do, but at the moment I am fairly pleased with results. I don't feel that I can risk flying with separate airline bookings, as you are right about the cost of the first flight being late and possibly not connecting.
 
C

Castilian

Guest
#22
Air Canada does not currently list any flights from Porto
I guess where's the problem: they don't call it Porto but Oporto so you have to look for flights out of Oporto (airport code: OPO) on their web and you shouldn't have problems to find them.

P.S.: Funnily enough, I was using the Portuguese name of the city (that it's also the most used one in English) when Air Canada uses in their web the same name that we give to the city in Spanish: Oporto (that it's less frequently used in English).
 

Albertagirl

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Camino(s) past & future
Frances (2015); Ch. d'Arles: Oloron Ste Marie to Aragones; Frances (2016); V.d.l.P.; Sanabres (2017)
#23
I guess where's the problem: they don't call it Porto but Oporto so you have to look for flights out of Oporto (airport code: OPO) on their web and you shouldn't have problems to find them.

P.S.: Funnily enough, I was using the Portuguese name of the city (that it's also the most used one in English) when Air Canada uses in their web the same name that we give to the city in Spanish: Oporto (that it's less frequently used in English).
That didn't work either. Oporto came up on the listing of cities where Air Canada flies in Portugal, but when I tried to search flights I got the message: "No flights found." I don't know why. I can, however, try getting in contact with Air Canada Reservations and perhaps they will be able to help me. But I am not ready to do that yet.
 
C

Castilian

Guest
#24
That didn't work either. Oporto came up on the listing of cities where Air Canada flies in Portugal, but when I tried to search flights I got the message: "No flights found." I don't know why.
I don't know either because I didn't have any problem to find flights out of Oporto on the web of Air Canada (both in the booking area and in the timetable area). You must be looking at a different area of the web of Air Canada because I didn't get any listing of cities in Portugal... Try this link: www.aircanada.com/en/home.html Click on multi-city where it says "Book a flight" and type the relevant data.

I can, however, try getting in contact with Air Canada Reservations and perhaps they will be able to help me.
Sure(ly)! If I was able find the flights surely they can make it too.
 

Albertagirl

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Frances (2015); Ch. d'Arles: Oloron Ste Marie to Aragones; Frances (2016); V.d.l.P.; Sanabres (2017)
#25
I don't know either because I didn't have any problem to find flights out of Oporto on the web of Air Canada (both in the booking area and in the timetable area). You must be looking at a different area of the web of Air Canada because I didn't get any listing of cities in Portugal... Try this link: www.aircanada.com/en/home.html Click on multi-city where it says "Book a flight" and type the relevant data.
That is exactly what I was doing. I wondered if the problem with the return flight had to do with scheduling. Perhaps there is no flight from Oporto which connects to a flight to Calgary. In any case, I cannot go any further at present except by getting in touch with their reservations staff. Thank you for giving so much time to this.
 
C

Castilian

Guest
#26
I wondered if the problem with the return flight had to do with scheduling. Perhaps there is no flight from Oporto which connects to a flight to Calgary.
I don't know your travel date but I don't think schedule is the problem because I saw connections from Oporto to Calgary on several different months... Anyway, best of luck with your travel plans. And if you finally know why you don't see the flights, please, let me know because I'm really curious about it.
 

Albertagirl

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Frances (2015); Ch. d'Arles: Oloron Ste Marie to Aragones; Frances (2016); V.d.l.P.; Sanabres (2017)
#27
I don't know your travel date but I don't think schedule is the problem because I saw connections from Oporto to Calgary on several different months... Anyway, best of luck with your travel plans. And if you finally know why you don't see the flights, please, let me know because I'm really curious about it.
@Castilian;
I think I've figured it out. I tried to book a one way ticket from Oporto to Calgary on the day that I want to go and the web site again said that there were no flights, but I got the regular flight booking screen, which showed that there were no flights on the day that I chose and the day before. I tried booking for the day before that and it worked fine. However, the flight leaves Porto at 6:00 am, which is 10 minutes earlier than the flight from Madrid, and with poor connections would take me about 24 hours to get home. I think that I shall return to looking at a flight out of Bilbao. I might spend a night or two there to get over the 11 hour bus ride. It will work out somehow when I am ready to book. I feel more comfortable flying out of a Spanish city, as I speak some Spanish and am taking classes, whereas I have not a word of Portuguese.
 

Kanga

Moderator
Staff member
Donating Member
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Francés x 5, Le Puy x 2, Arles, Tours, Norte, Madrid, Via de la Plata.
#28
@Albertagirl if you do fly in through Pau, give yourself a night there and a day to explore - it's a beautiful city, with a wonderful chateau (and a guided tour), a great undercover food market, and glorious views of the Pyrenees sitting in the boulevard near the chateau.
 

Albertagirl

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Frances (2015); Ch. d'Arles: Oloron Ste Marie to Aragones; Frances (2016); V.d.l.P.; Sanabres (2017)
#29
@Albertagirl if you do fly in through Pau, give yourself a night there and a day to explore - it's a beautiful city, with a wonderful chateau (and a guided tour), a great undercover food market, and glorious views of the Pyrenees sitting in the boulevard near the chateau.
Thank you so much for this. I am planning on booking my flights today: Calgary to Pau; Madrid to Calgary for the return. It will be a long journey: four flights both ways. I should probably take a day off to adjust to the time change and to shake out my joints after the journey. Is there a church in Pau where I could formally begin my pilgrimage? Did you stay in Pau and could you suggest a place to stay? I do not have a cell phone but can make bookings with my ipad on Booking.com. If I stay over in Pau, I might take a train to Oloron Ste Marie, as I understand that it is a 34 k. walk over some difficult terrain. I shall be able to make better decisions when I have received the guidebook which I have ordered from CSJ in England. I am not sure if I would need a MiamMiam Dodo for the few days walk to Somport. Any other suggestions which you could make would be much appreciated.

 
C

Castilian

Guest
#30
I hope I'm not late with my reply.

the flight leaves Porto at 6:00 am, which is 10 minutes earlier than the flight from Madrid,
Yes, but there's a nuance. Mainland Portugal is an hour behind Mainland Spain so when it's 07:00 a.m. in Santiago de Compostela (or in Madrid), it's 06:00 a.m. in Porto. Anyway, it's a pity there aren't connections on your travel date with the 12:20 p.m. flight out of Porto.

I think that I shall return to looking at a flight out of Bilbao. I might spend a night or two there to get over the 11 hour bus ride.
If you are fine spending a night or two somewhere along your route, I would consider the option of flying to London from Galicia once again. A night or two in London wouldn't be a bad thing for you (and you wouldn't have language problems). And the flight from London to Calgary would be non-stop...

Anyway, pick your choice and book whatever flights work better for you. Best of luck with your travel plans and enjoy every step and every stop of your camino.
 

Albertagirl

Veteran Member
Donating Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (2015); Ch. d'Arles: Oloron Ste Marie to Aragones; Frances (2016); V.d.l.P.; Sanabres (2017)
#31
I hope I'm not late with my reply.



Yes, but there's a nuance. Mainland Portugal is an hour behind Mainland Spain so when it's 07:00 a.m. in Santiago de Compostela (or in Madrid), it's 06:00 a.m. in Porto. Anyway, it's a pity there aren't connections on your travel date with the 12:20 p.m. flight out of Porto.



If you are fine spending a night or two somewhere along your route, I would consider the option of flying to London from Galicia once again. A night or two in London wouldn't be a bad thing for you (and you wouldn't have language problems). And the flight from London to Calgary would be non-stop...

Anyway, pick your choice and book whatever flights work better for you. Best of luck with your travel plans and enjoy every step and every stop of your camino.
Castilian:
After some searching, I have booked through KLM for a flight to Pau and a return flight from Madrid. It was very cheap, less than CAN$900, which is $100 less than my return flight to Madrid for my camino last year. There are lots of ways to get to Madrid from Santiago and my flight home leaves at 10:10 am, which should give me enough time to get to the airport in the morning whatever I decide to do. It was very frustrating that no airline which would provide a connecting flight to Pau would also provide a flight from Santiago, but I am pleased with what I have arranged and I had to get something booked. The cost of the flights is going up every day and the available choices of times to fly going down. One of the odder aspects of searching for flights was that I booked with KLM but am flying with Air France. When I tried to book with Air France, it was $300 more but the overseas flights were with KLM. Thanks very much for your help.
 

Kanga

Moderator
Staff member
Donating Member
Camino(s) past & future
Francés x 5, Le Puy x 2, Arles, Tours, Norte, Madrid, Via de la Plata.
#32
@Albertagirl yes, we did stay in Pau and we stayed at the Hotel Bristol - which was great. Good location, besutiful old building, lovely staff, reasonable price. I see it is No 1 on TripAdvisor so the price may have gone up - our trip was four years ago.
 

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