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To Bayonne from Madrid or Paris?

peregrina2000

Moderator
Staff member
I have just made my decision about Camino 2017 -- first the Baztan from Bayonne to Pamplona, and then the Norte from Irún. I would like to start keeping an eye on airfares, which I know will be high, but I am having trouble deciding which is the easiest/quickest/cheapest way to Bayonne.

An open jaw ticket (into Paris, out of Santiago) is currently pricing higher than into Madrid, out of Santiago. The train from Paris is more expensive than the train from Madrid. I am assuming CDG to Montparnasse is more complicated than Madrid airport to Chamartin. I can get to Bayonne in one fell swoop from Paris, but if I fly into Madrid, I will do what whariwharangi described in another post, which would involve euskotren to Hendaye and train to Beyonne:

Take Renfe train from Madrid to either Irun Renfe station or Gare d' Hendaye. If your train from Madrid terminates in Irun take the Metro Donostialdea (Euskotren) commuter train from Irun Colon station to Hendaia station. Take SNCF train from Gare d'Hendaye to Gare de Bayonne. Take the SNCF TER train from Bayonne to SJPdP.

So, if anyone has experience with these options (whari explains that he has put the schedule together but has never traveled the route), I'd love some advice on whether to fly into Paris or Madrid. Thanks, buen camino, Laurie
 
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Year of past OR future Camino
Frances 2012, 2014, Norte June 2017, Primitivo July 2017, Portuguese May 2018, Salvador (2019)
We did the Paris to Bayonne train a few years back. We taxi'ed from CDG into Montparnasse for an afternoon train to Bayonne but it was because we had 4 bikes with us. It seems like at the time, there was a train directly from CDG to Bordeaux and then a short train on to Bayonne, but it was a fairly tight connection between flight and train and we were concerned about making it in time with our bikes. If you can catch the one out of CDG (around 9:30 am?) to either Bordeaux or Bayonne, that would be fairly simple.
Buen Camino,
Judy
 
W

whariwharangi

Guest
A.

Madrid Airport to Chamartin - allow 1 hour

Madrid to Irun 6 - 8 hours.

Irun to Hendaye - Metro runs every 30 minutes - allow an hour. Distance is 3 km if you want to walk or take a taxi.

SNCF train or Transports64 (hourly) from Gare d'Hendaye to Bayonne - allow an hour. (note some some buses pick up at Irun Renfe station) (note the bus terminates at Place de Basques in Bayonne)

B.

CDG to Gare Montparnasse - 1:15

Paris Montparnasse to Bayonne 5 - 6 hours

Conclusion:

Time wise, Paris to Bayonne is faster ... depending on the alignment of the sun and the moon and your arrival time.
 
W

whariwharangi

Guest
Cheapest (by far) is to take ALSA bus from Madrid Avenida de America to San Sebastian then PESA bus from San Sebastian/Donostia to Place de Basques Bayonne or ALSA bus from San Sebastian to Gare Bayonne.
 
W

whariwharangi

Guest
Easiest is to fly to Biarritz from either of Madrid or Paris.

Chronoplus bus 14 goes from Biarritz Airport to Gare Bayonne.
 
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KinkyOne

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
I'am not perfect, but I'm always myself!!!
An open jaw ticket (into Paris, out of Santiago) is currently pricing higher than into Madrid, out of Santiago. The train from Paris is more expensive than the train from Madrid. I am assuming CDG to Montparnasse is more complicated than Madrid airport to Chamartin. I can get to Bayonne in one fell swoop from Paris, but if I fly into Madrid, I will do what whariwharangi described in another post, which would involve euskotren to Hendaye and train to Beyonne:
Oh, my, way too fast, way too much Laurie. Slow down :D

As I remember you want to go in early May. And on skyscanner I've found one way tickets available for 340€ (mostly from ORD) but with four flights to Biarritz. That's real pain in the ass I know. Or 766€ return flight (approx.May 1st - June 15th) ORD - Helsinki - Biarritz and SdC - MAD - ORD. The catch with later is 16hrs layover in Helsinki on the way to France where you maybe want to meet Aki Kaurismaeki for a beer or 12 :D
 
Year of past OR future Camino
2019
Does it need to be either Paris or Madrid, Laurie?
If not, there are many other options
Amsterdam, for example...
I found flights to Biarritz out of Amsterdam that transit through Lyon.
ORD to AMS? Plenty of options...

And there is always GB...there's choice of direct flights just from London:
https://www.kayak.com/flights/LON-BIQ/2017-05-15
Some are ridiculously (high) priced but others are just the opposite.
 

BShea

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
(9/2013) Le Puy
(5/2015) CF
(5/2016) Le Puy
(5/2017) CF
(9/2017) Le Puy
(9/2019) RL Stevenson
The airfare prices right now are the lowest than I've seen in 10 years! (I'm thinking it has to do with the election) But... not for open jaw tickets. If I were you, I'd fly in and out of Madrid. There's a cheap flight out of Madrid to BIQ around noon and cheap flights from SCQ to Madrid. In total, it'd probably add around $100 to your fare by booking them yourself. I always buy the travel insurance on my US flight so if your flight from the States is delayed, you're covered.

If you decide to fly to CDG, a train ticket from Paris Monparnasse to Bayonne bought 3 months in advance is from 19-25 euros, so not too pricey.

As far as the Euskotren, I've taken it a couple of times - once all the way from Bilbao (it took several hours!) There is a bus that picks up right across from at the Euskotren station in Hendaye and it takes just over an hour to Bayonne. I've taken that bus several times. Or, the train is another option, it just never worked out with my time schedule - the bus stops right in front of the Biarritz airport, then continues on to Bayonne.

There are cheap buses from Pamplona to Irun or San Sebastian. I ended up taking the bus to San Sebastian because of the schedule and then hopped on the Euskotren to Hendaye - no problem.

Will you be walking from Bayonne to Pamplona via St Jean de Luz or via Souraide? I have walked from Anglet to St Jean de Lux - it's beautiful, but basically road walking and not well marked. I just followed the coastline.

Yesterday, a flight from LAX to CDG on American Airlines (May 7-June 18) was $468 on justairticket.com! Unheard of!!!!
 

KinkyOne

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
I'am not perfect, but I'm always myself!!!
This summer Iberia also started Madrid-Biarritz flights but I think they can't beat Madrid-Irun (6hrs) train for 15€ ;)
 

Annie Little

Active Member
Year of past OR future Camino
Frances Sept-Oct 2016
I am assuming CDG to Montparnasse is more complicated than Madrid airport to Chamartin. I can get to Bayonne in one fell swoop from Paris, but if I fly into Madrid,

I flew into Paris in sept .... 7am .... there is a bus from CDG directly to Montparnasse .... I gave myself plenty of time and got thevtrain from Montparnasse at 12.30 pm .... I could have got an earlier train but I allowed fir delays ..... it was easy !
 
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peregrina2000

Moderator
Staff member
There are obviously far more savvy travelers on this forum than I! Thanks so much for all the tips, I will start working on this and nail something down. But one thing is set -- walking on May 16 from Bayonne on the Camino de Baztan -- anyone else want to join us?!
 

NualaOC

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
A few and hopefully lots more. See signature.
But one thing is set -- walking on May 16 from Bayonne on the Camino de Baztan -- anyone else want to join us?!
I am very tempted Laurie. I can't commit until I know my 2017 work schedule, but I'd love to walk the Baztan again. It will be hard to get this idea out of my head .......

Re. your travel itinerary, I think that the Iberia flight from Biarritz to Madrid departs at about 12 noon. I looked at it for a friend who was travelling from the US and it was quite expensive (for a September journey). He flew Madrid to San Sebastian instead.
 

kelleymac

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
March/April 2015, Late April 2016, Sept/Oct 2017, April 2019.
We took the night train from Paris to Bayonne last Spring. Our flight arrival time didn't allow us to fly that day from Paris to Biarritz, so we had either stay in Paris over night, or take the night train. We arrived early in the morning in Bayonne, just in time for cafe et croissant, a visit to the cathedral, and then to the market to buy bread, cheese, pasties and fruit for our picnic lunch, that we had in SJPP.--

I have found out since then that we could have stayed overnight in Paris at SacréCouer. We're roman catholic, so it would have been a great way to start our pilgrimage. It's very affordable (4-16 Euros), you just have to go to two masses, compline, and an hour of adoration. -- Here's the website if you're interested:http://www.sacre-coeur-montmartre.com/english/night-adoration/article/one-night-adoration-at-the
 
M

Mark Lee

Guest
We did the Paris to Bayonne train a few years back. We taxi'ed from CDG into Montparnasse for an afternoon train to Bayonne but it was because we had 4 bikes with us. It seems like at the time, there was a train directly from CDG to Bordeaux and then a short train on to Bayonne, but it was a fairly tight connection between flight and train and we were concerned about making it in time with our bikes. If you can catch the one out of CDG (around 9:30 am?) to either Bordeaux or Bayonne, that would be fairly simple.
Buen Camino,
Judy
In 2013 I took the train(s) from CDG to Bayonne and on to SJPdP.
It was a tight connection in Bourdeaux. So tight I missed my train, ha ha. Fortunately they just stuck me on another one, but it led to a domino effect that I ended up taking the last train into SJPdP after arriving in Bayonne.
 

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