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Walking Partial Camino de Santiago Route: Feasible?

Naz

New Member
Time of past OR future Camino
2024 Camino Frances
Hey,
We've booked to walk from Sarria to Santiago at the beginning of May. Unfortunately my travel companion has an injury and is being advised that it's too much for her to do.
Rather than cancel the whole thing (flights and travel package already paid for) she's considering walking 8-10km a day and getting a bus or taxi to the town/village we're due to be stopping in each day. Our route is
Sarria to Portomarín
Portomarín to Palas de Rei
Palas de Rei to Arzúa
Arzúa to Arca
Arca to Santiago de Compostela

Does anyone know if this would even be possible?
Is it a crazy idea?
I suppose she would like to experience some of it rather than cancel it completely.
Thanks,
Neasa
 
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I believe it is definitely possible. My daughter and I both struggle with our feet (a hereditary condition) and although we fully intend to walk every step of the way, we are open to the idea of catching a taxi if and when necessary - obviously we would then not qualify for our compostelas, but that is fine with us. I'd rather experience some of the Camino than nothing at all.
 
Hey,
We've booked to walk from Sarria to Santiago at the beginning of May. Unfortunately my travel companion has an injury and is being advised that it's too much for her to do.
Rather than cancel the whole thing (flights and travel package already paid for) she's considering walking 8-10km a day and getting a bus or taxi to the town/village we're due to be stopping in each day. Our route is
Sarria to Portomarín
Portomarín to Palas de Rei
Palas de Rei to Arzúa
Arzúa to Arca
Arca to Santiago de Compostela

Does anyone know if this would even be possible?
Is it a crazy idea?
I suppose she would like to experience some of it rather than cancel it completely.
Thanks,
Neasa
Perfectly feasible on that route though you will need to pay attention to where you might be at your companions walking limit. Taxis will be available in urban areas and in more rural situations any bar-owner will call one for you. Getting a pick up in the middle of the woods might be more difficult unless you have fluent Spanish.

Can your tour provider not help?

If not consider that an alternative is for her to taxi forward to a suitable point (village/bar/cafe) and wait for you to catch-up and walk the final kilometres together.

This will all require a little study of the routes and possible staging points.. This page of Gronze https://www.gronze.com/etapa/sarria/portomarin and the subsequent pages will help with planning. It is in Spanish, but simple, repetitive Spanish and most Browsers will translate to English. Beware Anglicisation of place-names.

Buena Suerte
 
The focus is on reducing the risk of failure through being well prepared. 2nd ed.
Get a taxi number before you leave in the mornings (or the night before). You can ask at a bar or ask at your albergue. This part of the route has a lot of infrastructure. There are buses, but not always directly on the walking part of the route and they go mainly from town to town instead stops in between. You would need to be able to direct a taxi to where you are located so you may need some Spanish to do that. Alternately you can stop at a bar for a cold drink and ask for help to call. I have also found that other pilgrims will be happy to help you.
 
FYI, I have walked this stretch over 7 or 8 days twice in the past year so there are a couple of longer days in your itinerary. Lots of people do this in 5 days and there are lots of people who entirely walk without packs and have their luggage transported. I don't know if that applies to you, but it could lighten the load. In the summer, there is somewhere to stop to rest or get a coffee every few miles/kms. That being said, it does go through forested paths.

On Day one, Mirallos is a good stopping point.

On day 2 I would say Gonzar or maybe Hospital de Cruz. There is a steep hill all the way to Hospital de Cruz from Portomarin.

On Day 3 Melide is a good mid-way point. Cab stand in the middle of town near the main intersection.

On day 4 there is a place where the Camino crosses the highway at Salceda

On Day 5 maybe she could cab ahead and wait for you at Lavacolla so you could walk into town together?
 
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IMHO it is absolutely possible and I LOVE this suggestion (vs the other way around)
If not consider that an alternative is for her to taxi forward to a suitable point (village/bar/cafe) and wait for you to catch-up and walk the final kilometres together.
Not totally sure but I think it will be a lot easier to get a taxi to come TO a given albergue; then it would be better to walk together to a final destination du jour (just in case help is needed etc.)

Just for some type of comparison here is what I did

(Walking from Triacastella I walked through Sarria and stopped at Barbadelo, but you can obviously still count Sarria as your starting point)
Day 1: Barbadelo --> Casa Cruceiro de Ferreiros (totally loved this albergue)
Day 2: --> Castromajor
Day 3: --> San Xulian do Camino
Day 4: --> Melide (OK this was more of a Promenade sashay ;) , but hey - I wanted a nice evening with pulpos and I had time overall)
Day 5: --> Arzua
Day 6: --> O'Pedrouse
Day 7: --> onto SdC (safe arrival)

As you can see - most are "off stage" but the oft-talked about crowds I did not have. Lots of rain I did :)

Technically our last 2 days are in sync so you just have to cram my 5 first days into your 3

Good luck and Buen Camino!
 
Last edited:
Ideal pocket guides for during and after your Camino. Each weighs just 40g (1.4 oz).
IMHO it is absolutely possible and I LOVE this suggestion (vs the other way around)

Not totally sure but I think it will be a lot easier to get a taxi to come TO a given albergue; then it would be better to walk together to a final destination du jour (just in case help is needed etc.)
Good luck and Buen Camino!
Yes, but that would be really early in the morning and Spanish cab drivers in small towns don't really like to get up that early. Also walking in the cooler part of the day might be better than later in the day. There are places to stop in towns where the road crosses and at bars and cab drivers will likely be happy to stop and pick up there.
 
The Sarria-Compostela section has many, many people and local companies offering different services to pilgrims. I have seen taxis crisscrossing the Camino, waiting pilgrims in strategic intersections, and so on.
Bars are in Spain a kind of social centers, and owners seem to know everything and everybody, and are usually glad to help. I know this from experience: a bar owner arranged for a taxi to pick me up in the middle of nowhere, in a Camino much more lonely than the Frances, when I could barely walk due to a leg injury.
I have also looked in google for "taxi+Sarria+peregrinos" and there are many (I don't personally know them, but the issue is that this is perfectly possible).
Buen camino!
 
@J Willhaus - reckn you'd know better being a hospitalera. Is it still possible to perhaps reserve a taxi a night before?
Yes I do agree with the weather; my day started around 6:00-6:30 am
 
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You can use WhatsApp to contact a taxi and send your location to the taxi driver via the app. When you are sending a WhatsApp message tap the 📎 icon, and you will get a menu of attachments, one of which is your location. (At least that's how it works on Android phones)

Screenshot_20240227_092719_WhatsApp.jpg
 
@J Willhaus - reckn you'd know better being a hospitalera. Is it still possible to perhaps reserve a taxi a night before?
Yes I do agree with the weather; my day started around 6:00-6:30 am
Yes, it is possible. There are also taxi cab adverts along the way. There really isn't a central dispatch though for private cab drivers except perhaps in Santiago.

In Palas, there is also cab stand that is near the bus stop. That's were we got a cab to take us to see the Pembre Castle this winter. I also know there is a cab stand in Melide as I used it last summer to get a cab to the same castle so I could recon for the winter trip.
 
I regret not walking the variant to Samos both times I walked the Frances. If a bus or taxi goes that way, it might be a very nice option to add it in for a half day if possible; everyone seems to love it.
 
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@Camino Chrissy - Ditto... it was absolutely my original thought and plan and then of course the blisters showed up and I just got slightly paranoid and obsessed with them (although in all fairness by the time I was in Triacastela everything was just fine).
One of the gentlemen I men in Albergue El Paso (Vega de Valcarce) and traveled with for the next day - we both wound up in Albergue Linar do Rei; well he said he was going to do that detour but was gonna sleep in. I of course hit the road while the stars were still shining. 2 days later I ran into him in the bar at Peruscallo. Turned out he didn't stay - just did a short perfunctory tour of the Monastery and moved on.
I couldnt help but think that had I known this - I might've gone with him (he was offering for me to keep him company) blisters or not....
Oh well, as they say - thats the reason to go it again and perhaps "next time"

BTW the gentleman I just spoke of is Philip A Towndrow who does Phillip A Towndrow Hikes on YouTube (I belive I wound up in 2 of his clips ... there was my 15 mins of Fame!) We still keep in touch and he just came off del Norte about 6 months ago
 
Lots of good tips already @Naz .
Not crazy at all. ;)

I started my first Camino injured.
And was thankful for every day I could keep going.
All the planning and time and expense would have been worth it for just one day on the Camino.
Where there is a will, there is a way.
 
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Hey,
We've booked to walk from Sarria to Santiago at the beginning of May. Unfortunately my travel companion has an injury and is being advised that it's too much for her to do.
Rather than cancel the whole thing (flights and travel package already paid for) she's considering walking 8-10km a day and getting a bus or taxi to the town/village we're due to be stopping in each day. Our route is
Sarria to Portomarín
Portomarín to Palas de Rei
Palas de Rei to Arzúa
Arzúa to Arca
Arca to Santiago de Compostela

Does anyone know if this would even be possible?
Is it a crazy idea?
I suppose she would like to experience some of it rather than cancel it completely.
Thanks,
Neasa
Sounds like a good plan B considering the circumstances. My sisters and myself have the same idea if any day the walk is too much for any one us. Meet up at next overnight stop.
 
Bummer for your travel companion!
Are you going to take transportation with her or do you plan to walk and meet her at the stops designated by your travel company? It isn't clear to me.
 
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Hey,
We've booked to walk from Sarria to Santiago at the beginning of May. Unfortunately my travel companion has an injury and is being advised that it's too much for her to do.
Rather than cancel the whole thing (flights and travel package already paid for) she's considering walking 8-10km a day and getting a bus or taxi to the town/village we're due to be stopping in each day. Our route is
Sarria to Portomarín
Portomarín to Palas de Rei
Palas de Rei to Arzúa
Arzúa to Arca
Arca to Santiago de Compostela

Does anyone know if this would even be possible?
Is it a crazy idea?
I suppose she would like to experience some of it rather than cancel it completely.
Thanks,
Neasa
No....not crazy at all!! Whatever your friend can manage to walk will be worthwhile. Lots of people take public transport or taxis for all sorts of reasons - do not cancel your plans .... go for it!
 

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