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Tui to Santiago - updated information from walkers

ann o neill

New Member
Hi, i am planning to walk this section of the camino portugues now in june 09 and i am looking for updated information from anyone who has done it recently. There are 8 of us together and we plan to use pensions rather than the 'albergues' should we try to book ahead or is it easy to get accommodation along the way?? Also what is the terrain like ? i still havent decided if i should wear boots or walking shoes? hopefully the weather will be good so would walking shoes be ok once they are confortable? or is the terrain too rough for same? Would appreciate comments on these issues and any other advice or comments you may have from your experience :wink:
 

Rose Louise

Member
Hi Ann

I wore well worn in Brooks (leather) walkers whereas my partner wore hiking boots. We walked the Portugues in May last year with all the rain and both of us were happy with our choice of footwear. Only trouble was that my partner suffered badly from blisters between the toes from the second day.

The terrain was undulating, no real hard climbs - I suppose it depends where and how you did your training. Coming from Rural Australia where it is very flat provided a challenge for us whereas for most others it was not.

There were very few pilgrims along the way and on most days it was the same people going the same way that criss-crossed our paths.

Have an enjoyable Camino. Cheers Rose Louise.
 

JohnnieWalker

Nunca se camina solo
Hola Ann

The terrain will present no problems - boots aren't necessary and in fact in the heat of the summer shoes may be more comfortable. All down to individual choice.

There are albergues and adequate hostal/hotel accommodation all the way. Check out the new downloadable guide to this route available from the CSJ http://www.csj.org.uk/guides-online.htm
It has lots of up to date information on accommodation. I think it is wise to call ahead each night or book two or three nights in advance.

Send the CSJ any updates or improvements to the guide please!

Buen Camino

John
 

elzi

Active Member
Hi, just arrived in Santiago today having walked up from Porto. I´ve walked since Ponte De Lima in Sandals. I took boots but its been SO hot (my boots were designed for english winters) that they were simply too hot to wear.
I´m not recommending sandals, as there are some sections of the route under and inch or so of water and some slight ups and downs with loose rocks that would be better in more secure footwear but in general the path has not been too challenging and i´ve been walking 20-25km a day (finishing by lunchtime only because of the heat) quite happily in walking sandals so you should be fine in any kind of light footwear!
Buen Camino - apart from the horrible 8 or 9km thorugh industrial Purrino this camino has been beautiful - have fun! :D
 

anniethenurse

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances.Vasco del Interior.Camino Finisterre& Muxia. Camino Portugues. Ruta del Ebro.
Hi Elzi!

I have been planning to walk the Camino Portugues next year in the beginning of May. Walked the Camino Frances this May from SJPP to Burgos and enjoyed it very much. The next being the Holy Year I thought would be better to walk another camino, not continuing the CF but doing it sometimes later. - Now I´m interested how CP worked out for you, where did you stay, what are your recommendations, best stops and so on?
I will be walking alone, is it safe for a female walker ?
If everything works out the way I wish I´ll be flying to Porto, walk to Santiago and probably Finisterre and Muxia, spending an extra day in Santiago, Finisterre and Muxia,too. Then the plan is to take a bus back to Porto and fly back to Stockholm. Just can´t wait...

buen camino
xxxanniexxx
 

marlow1122

New Member
Hello Annie,
I found the Portuguese Camino very safe as a female walking alone in May, 2008. I met several other pilgrims walking alone also and we all felt very comfortable. Don't forget to look around Porto as it is very charming and the port lodges are worth a visit if you are interested.

Next Year I will walk the Via de la Plata, probably from Merida. Buen Camino!

Claudine
USA
 

elzi

Active Member
Hi Annie,

I walked May/June this year Porto-Santiago and found the route absolutely beautiful. I didn't have any fears about walking alone (though I only walked some of Spain alone my boyfriend having given up after walking through Purrino but my friend walked some of the portugese section alone a few weeks previously without any problems). I have to say though unlike Claudine (above) I only met one other woman walking alone the whole trip (a Spanish lady) and without exception everyone I met expressed extreme surprise at my being alone... I have never encountered any problems walking the camino path in the daytime alone - everyone I met on this trip was lovely - possibly the locals are less jaded by pilgrims than on the Frances and everyone I passed/talked to was very, very friendly and helpful!

I'd be lying if I didn't say I had a couple of uncomfortable moments but crucially these were in the evenings when I was out of pilgrim gear and just looking like a foreign woman walking around alone (my hair gets a bit blonde in the sunshine!) it was mainly in the bigger towns, in the rural areas everyone was very respectful! I was grabbed by a guy in Valenca but he went away when it was clear I couldn't understand what he was saying (making me suspect he just wanted money). I'm not saying this to put you off I'm just being honest. I would walk it again the whole way alone in a heartbeat so don't even worry about it just keep your wits about you as you would in any country! :D

I would say I found the Portugese part (once past Porto) some of the most beautiful walking. The only difficult part was the long stretch from Barcelos to Ponte De Lima where there is virtually no accomodation. I believe there is a possibility of somewhere before Ponte De Lima but I understood from some other pilgrims that it was closed when they got there. The centres of Barcelos and Ponte De Lima were both lovely. There was a medieval festival in Ponte De Lima just a few days after we we stayed - maybe check next years dates? - it might be nice for you to arrive in time to catch that/skip it depending on your taste! Ponte De Lima is a lovely place for a day off - we had one to recover from the previous day's long walk and I really enjoyed it.

I found May quite busy with pilgrims (though nothing like the Frances!) and there was never a shortage of beds, you can take your time stroll and stop without worrying about sleeping arrangements. Once it turned june though the number or people staying the in the albergues went from about 20-50 down to about 6!!!

The worst stretch of the trip was about 8km thorugh industrial Purrino, it was absoutely awful the worst bit of camino i've ever seen i think! Made much worse in that it was pouring with rain that whole day with the trucks passing drenching us in backspray - maybe in sunshine the constant trucks thundering past factories might have been more amusing.... If you the kind of person that skips the awful bits then take a taxi though that stretch....

If you can't make it to Redondela it might be worth stopping Mos, I understand this is a very nice albergue and the locals there were amazing! We asked if there was somewhere to get coffee and they took us into a private reunion party they were having and made sure the barman got us drinks!!!

If you have lots of time you could always walk back to Porto to catch your flight!?! The route is very well signed backward - particularly in Portugal where I think it is a pilgrimage route in itself down to Fatima?

Have a lovely time!! I'm sure you will enjoy it!
 

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