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Two questions: getting to the start, and an extra short first day

Camino(s) past & future
considering (2018)
#1
Hello,

I'll be traveling from Porto by train to Valenca in late July, to start the camino there. My first question: I was unable to reserve a train ticket between the two towns. I inquired with the company, who let me know that you can only buy tickets for that trip at the station (other tickets for the same route could be reserved, but they were longer/less convenient rides). Does anyone have experience getting train tickets heading north from Porto just before the train ride, and is this typical (and generally problem free)?

When we arrive in Valenca we'll walk the few km to Tui in Spain and spend the night there. Second question: Is it inappropriate to stay in an albergue that first night, since we've only walked a couple kms on the camino? I know that there's a longer stretch (by the standards of my 7 year old) heading out of Tui until we get to the next albergues in O Porrino, so I'd like to start in Tui early in the day, rather than pairing it with the train ride from Porto.

Obrigado, I appreciate the many people who have offered their insights to my many previous questions too! This may be the last one ;-)
 

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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
You shouldn't have a problem buying the ticket. Get to the station with a bit of extra time in case there is a line. You might also be able to take a bus.

Stop sonewhere - any shop or cafe should do - in Valanca to get your pilgrim passport stamped. Valanca is a treat! Follow the arrows into the old fort.

And it is permissable to stay in albergues at the commencement of your walk. Tui has private as well as the municipal albergue.
 
Camino(s) past & future
2013 CF
2014 Le Puy-St Jean
2014, 2016 Volunteer St JP
2016 Portuguese
2017 Porto-Santiago
2018
#4
Hello Ana
The train ticket unlikely to be a problem. Agree with Nortern Light just leave plenty of time. Also about staying in an albergue. Just need a credential.
I am a strong believer in starting with shorter days. I like the saying “if you want to arrive like a young person, start off like an old one” To me this not only means shorter days but importantly walking SLOWLY. Too many start to walk quickly due to excitement at beginning and feelings of pent up energy ( myself included) need to hold back. You have hills ahead.
Buen Camino.
Happymark
 

julia-t

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances 2015-17
Kumano Kodo March 2018
Camino Portuguese Valenca-SdC April 2018
#5
I did the same thing at the end of April - took a train from Porto-Valenca (there was a change somewhere) and walked from the station at Valenca to Tui. Not only did I want to see the fortress there, but I think there's something rather 'romantic' (in the adventurous sense of the word' in walking from one country to another.

It's about 4km, and I got my first stamp at a cafe on the right just after you leave the fortress and shortly before the bridge. I now wish I'd got one somewhere in the fortress, but at the time didn't even think about it.

I stayed at Ideas Peregrinas which isn't just a cafe as many think. then next morning I walked to O Porrino.

About the train ticket, I booked my ticket in advance, about 4 weeks before I ttravelled https://www.cp.pt/passageiros/en
 

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Camino(s) past & future
considering (2018)
#7
Hello Ana
The train ticket unlikely to be a problem. Agree with Nortern Light just leave plenty of time. Also about staying in an albergue. Just need a credential.
I am a strong believer in starting with shorter days. I like the saying “if you want to arrive like a young person, start off like an old one” To me this not only means shorter days but importantly walking SLOWLY. Too many start to walk quickly due to excitement at beginning and feelings of pent up energy ( myself included) need to hold back. You have hills ahead.
Buen Camino.
Happymark
Thank you Mark, all good points that I appreciate!
Ana
 
Camino(s) past & future
considering (2018)
#8
I did the same thing at the end of April - took a train from Porto-Valenca (there was a change somewhere) and walked from the station at Valenca to Tui. Not only did I want to see the fortress there, but I think there's something rather 'romantic' (in the adventurous sense of the word' in walking from one country to another.

It's about 4km, and I got my first stamp at a cafe on the right just after you leave the fortress and shortly before the bridge. I now wish I'd got one somewhere in the fortress, but at the time didn't even think about it.

I stayed at Ideas Peregrinas which isn't just a cafe as many think. then next morning I walked to O Porrino.

About the train ticket, I booked my ticket in advance, about 4 weeks before I ttravelled https://www.cp.pt/passageiros/en
Thanks Julia-T, we're on the same wavelength about the romance of walking from one country to another!

I appreciate the pointers. The link that you shared is the one that I've look at, which funnily enough will let me book the early morning or later evening train, but not the many mid-day trains. I'll follow the advice of leaving plenty of time.

Happy explorations!
 

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