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Which route?

Carfax

New Member
Past OR future Camino
Samos to SDC April and May 2016
SDC to Fisterra and Muxia) August 2016
I am planning on doing a solo short 100k pilgrimage starting mid April next year.

I am coming from Australia and then I will be a month short of my 69th birthday. I have not walked the Camino or indeed any long path before.

As far as I can determine the most popular route for this short pilgrimage is from Sarria along the final stages of at least two pilgrim routes.

This suggests that this route will be (relatively) busy. Are the Portugese or English routes perhaps better quieter alternatives; or does the Sarria commencing route have other over-riding compensations which make it a better route for a beginner??
 
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mountaingoat999

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
we are due out Jan 2016
Cafax


Mid April is not Busy
you could consider the walk from Santiago to Fisterre which is quieter....
Then take the bus back.


from Porto to Santiago
or the ingles

what ever you do enjoy
 

Donna Sch

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
VdLP-Sanabres-Fisterra (Summer 2015); Levante-Invierno (Feb/Mar 2019);
England Camino routes ?2024
Ourense is a popular starting spot too taking the Camino Sanabres variation of the VDLP.
 

Urban Trekker

Happy Trails
Past OR future Camino
English Camino (2013)
Portuguese Camino (2014)
French Camino (2016)
Way of Saint Francis April 2017
I am planning on doing a solo short 100k pilgrimage starting mid April next year.

I am coming from Australia and then I will be a month short of my 69th birthday. I have not walked the Camino or indeed any long path before.

As far as I can determine the most popular route for this short pilgrimage is from Sarria along the final stages of at least two pilgrim routes.

This suggests that this route will be (relatively) busy. Are the Portugese or English routes perhaps better quieter alternatives; or does the Sarria commencing route have other over-riding compensations which make it a better route for a beginner??
This question I have first hand knowledge of. The easier of the two, I think, is the Portuguese route starting in Tui Spain. Plunty of cafes and bars to rest and refresh and more overnight options. The climbing is not as steep or as long as the English route. The English starts out easy but gets very steep the second day with a lot of steep climbs and decent and the last 2 days are long walks. There ate few cafes or bars to rehydrate or rest at. Both have great senery and towns to explore.
If you walk the Portuguese, allow time for a day trip to Valencia Portugal just across the river from Tui. Visit the old Portuguese fort. It will be a day we'll spent. Buen Camino

Happy Trails
 

tyrrek

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
SJPP-SdC (4-5/2011), Ferrol-SdC (9/2011), Pamplona-SdC (3-4/2012), Camino Finisterre (10/2012), Ourense-SdC (5/2014)
Good info so far. I haven't walked the Portuguese route, but I have walked most of the other 'approach routes'.

Sarria would be the busiest, but not particularly busy by it's standards. Plenty of company and accommodation options if you're not sure about your daily distances. I imagine the Portuguese would also have lots of options but be less busy.

The route to Finisterre is a good route with plenty of options, but I imagine still pretty quiet in April, as many people do it at the end of another Camino.

I found the Ingles the most challenging as accommodation and company was relatively limited, so you had to do a certain distance each day. (That was 2011.) It's a pretty route, though.

I really enjoyed Ourense to Santiago. I'm not sure if many people will be around in April, though, as a lot will just be starting in Seville about that time. Certainly May is a great time with just enough company and options, but still feeling unspoilt and authentic.
 
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Peter Fransiscus

Be a Rainbow in someone else's cloud.
Past OR future Camino
All that we are is the result of what we have thought.
I am planning on doing a solo short 100k pilgrimage starting mid April next year.

I am coming from Australia and then I will be a month short of my 69th birthday. I have not walked the Camino or indeed any long path before.

As far as I can determine the most popular route for this short pilgrimage is from Sarria along the final stages of at least two pilgrim routes.

This suggests that this route will be (relatively) busy. Are the Portugese or English routes perhaps better quieter alternatives; or does the Sarria commencing route have other over-riding compensations which make it a better route for a beginner??
Hi, as already stated walk from Santiago to Finistere.
At the end you yourself have to make a decision.
Wish you well and a Buen Camino, Peter.
 

Tia Valeria

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
Pt Norte/Pmtvo 2010
C. Inglés 2011
C. Primitivo '12
Norte-C. de la Reina '13
C. do Mar-C. Inglés '15
If the Compostela is important then walking Santiago to Finisterre and getting the bus back will not qualify. The other suggestions are 100kms+, but the Inglés has to be walked from Ferrol not the short arm from Coruna. As already said the Inglés is quite challenging with wonderful scenery but many steep hills in a short distance and some work is needed to make manageable stages. It is possible to do so, there is more in the way of albergues etc now (May 2015) than in 2011, but it is still a fairly demanding Camino.
 

Donna Sch

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
VdLP-Sanabres-Fisterra (Summer 2015); Levante-Invierno (Feb/Mar 2019);
England Camino routes ?2024
The Sanabres from Ourense is not that demanding compared to the rest of the route and there are plenty of accommodation options. You can send your pack forward too quite easily if necessary.
Gerald Kelly has a great e-book which covers this camino and gives you a pretty good idea of the options. Between this and Melanie's VDLP phone app, we managed this easily. If you want more precise instructions, find the German guide books. I swear those things have it down to the metre and the minute sometimes!
I see you are in Melbourne. Backpacking Light is a good shop to visit when you are sorting out your gear. Make sure you try on an Aarnpack while you are there!
 
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spursfan

Veteran Member
I completed my Camino Norte by walking from Baamonde (103km) - could stop at Miraz, Sobrado, Boimorto before Arzua and joining the Camino Frances - much quieter, good variety of countryside

From Santiago Airport, bus to Lugo then train to Baamonde (if needed, go to next stop at Guitiriz and get taxi back)
 

Tom Leonard

Boston Strong
Past OR future Camino
Walking Sarria-Santiago Sept. 17,2015
CARFAX
Just did SARRIA - SANTIAGO at 67 yrs.( 9/21/15) and it was a good starter route. Moderate walk and good infrastructure for sure . Its a 5 day walk with some challenging hills but take your time and breathe in the Galician countryside. (poles are a must )
 

anna pugh

Member
Past OR future Camino
Camino Ingles 2016
I am planning on doing a solo short 100k pilgrimage starting mid April next year.

I am coming from Australia and then I will be a month short of my 69th birthday. I have not walked the Camino or indeed any long path before.

As far as I can determine the most popular route for this short pilgrimage is from Sarria along the final stages of at least two pilgrim routes.

This suggests that this route will be (relatively) busy. Are the Portugese or English routes perhaps better quieter alternatives; or does the Sarria commencing route have other over-riding compensations which make it a better route for a beginner??
I'm planning to walk the Ingles at lent in March . It's my first and I'm very inexperienced at long hikes.walking from Ferrol will be sufficient for the compostela.
 

KinkyOne

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
I'am not perfect, but I'm always myself!!!
Everything has been already said about last 100+kms on different routes except Camino de Invierno from Monforte de Lemos. This Camino became official camino recently and is very solitary even in high season. Monforte de Lemos has very good train connections with Santiago de Compostela.
You can read more about it in Invierno section if you scroll down the main page.
Or:
http://www.gronze.com/camino-de-santiago/caminos/guia-del-camino-invierno
http://mundicamino.com/rutas.cfm?id=66
http://www.caminodeinvierno.com/
http://caminodeinvierno.es/

Ultreia!
 
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dougfitz

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
Spain: Mar 2010, Apr 2014, May/Jun 2016. Norway/Sweden: 2012, 2018. Other: 2011, 2019. CP (tbc)
My experience is with the CF and CI, although I added a day to the latter and walked around the headland from Covas. It is a delightful walk but makes that a bit over 140km. I have heard many people have used the CI as their first Camino, and had no particular difficulty. I enjoyed the fact that it was so quiet and uncrowded, with plenty of opportunity for reflection. The other side of the coin is that there are fewer albergues, and if you want to walk shorter stages you will need to find private accommodation options. If you want more flexibility and are looking for more social engagement, I would suggest the CF. If you are prepared to do some longer stages and are seeking a more reflective experience, then the CI has clear advantages.
 

Carfax

New Member
Past OR future Camino
Samos to SDC April and May 2016
SDC to Fisterra and Muxia) August 2016
You have identified the real nub of the question; my worry about the CI is the hilly bits! Others have suggested that it gets quite steep at the end. Both are well documented but in Australia I can only find resources based on the CF. I suspect that as a first timer I will do the CF, then if I get another opportunity I am inclined to start at the end and work out along say the Portugese route or even the CI if I can ferry somewhere when it runs into the sea. Thanks for the input. All the best.
 

Carfax

New Member
Past OR future Camino
Samos to SDC April and May 2016
SDC to Fisterra and Muxia) August 2016
The Sanabres from Ourense is not that demanding compared to the rest of the route and there are plenty of accommodation options. You can send your pack forward too quite easily if necessary.
Gerald Kelly has a great e-book which covers this camino and gives you a pretty good idea of the options. Between this and Melanie's VDLP phone app, we managed this easily. If you want more precise instructions, find the German guide books. I swear those things have it down to the metre and the minute sometimes!
I see you are in Melbourne. Backpacking Light is a good shop to visit when you are sorting out your gear. Make sure you try on an Aarnpack while you are there!
Two posts and both helpful. I work close to Backpacking light and have already bought shoes and a 'rain cape' (poncho) from them. I am going to check out Ourense as I had not come across it as a starting point. I will also check out Gerard Kelly. So thank you very much for the leads. Regards, Richard
 

Carfax

New Member
Past OR future Camino
Samos to SDC April and May 2016
SDC to Fisterra and Muxia) August 2016
CARFAX
Just did SARRIA - SANTIAGO at 67 yrs.( 9/21/15) and it was a good starter route. Moderate walk and good infrastructure for sure . Its a 5 day walk with some challenging hills but take your time and breathe in the Galician countryside. (poles are a must )
Hello Tom. What sort of accommodation did you stay in?
 

Carfax

New Member
Past OR future Camino
Samos to SDC April and May 2016
SDC to Fisterra and Muxia) August 2016
Two posts and both helpful. I work close to Backpacking light and have already bought shoes and a 'rain cape' (poncho) from them. I am going to check out Ourense as I had not come across it as a starting point. I will also check out Gerard Kelly. So thank you very much for the leads. Regards, Richard
To follow on I googled Ourense (lovely looking town) and Gerard Kelly. The latter has two books on Amazon and the focus appears to be on the French Route, would you please help me out with the name of the book in which this route is covered. However one of the sites I found when looking at the actual route indicated that a reasonable level of Spanish was required!! What do you think of that comment.
 
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Carfax

New Member
Past OR future Camino
Samos to SDC April and May 2016
SDC to Fisterra and Muxia) August 2016
Look at this site from stage 33 onward for stage distance, profile, and accommodations from Ourense:
http://www.gronze.com/camino-de-santiago/caminos/guia-via-plata

I have walked all five routes into Santiago, and this one was my least favorite (though they are all worth doing). :)
Thanks - that is helpful, I have bookmarked this so I know how to find it later - am now having to think through all of the responses - I see why people start planning this a year out!!!!
 

Donna Sch

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
VdLP-Sanabres-Fisterra (Summer 2015); Levante-Invierno (Feb/Mar 2019);
England Camino routes ?2024
Check out the Eroski website for their elevation maps. It's in Spanish but there is a lot of good stuff.
http://caminodesantiago.consumer.es/mobile/etapa-de-ourense-a-cea There are hills coming out of Ourense as that city lies in a volcanic crater. Poles are handy and you will face the worst in the morning when you are fresh.
http://caminodesantiago.consumer.es/mobile/etapa-de-cea-a-a-laxe
http://caminodesantiago.consumer.es/mobile/etapa-de-a-laxe-a-outeiro
http://caminodesantiago.consumer.es/mobile/etapa-de-outeiro-a-santiago Ponte Ulla is at the bottom of a very steep descent. What goes down usually goes up so while there is a lovely albergue after Ponte Ulla at the top of the hill, it may not be the kindest way to finish a day.
Don't put pressure on yourself to do this in 4 days. Keep it flexible. Some days you can walk all day and on other days the pack refuses to sit right, or your feet don't love you.
It's much more fun if you do it in 5 days or even more. We planned on doing a minimum of 20 km per day but we had already done 900+ km of Camino so anything up to 30 km felt easy.
The first week on any Camino is best taken slowly eg 15-20 km (or even less!) and any extra is a bonus.
Try to keep the big hills for the mornings when you are fresh. It makes all the difference. Hills when you are tired are not enjoyable.
The bars are open early at 7 am so stop for coffee and breakfast so that you are feeling human. In fact I recommend stopping every couple of hours anyway for coffee and a pit stop. Besides you will probably use up about 4000 kcal/day in energy so enjoy the food!
 
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Carfax

New Member
Past OR future Camino
Samos to SDC April and May 2016
SDC to Fisterra and Muxia) August 2016
Like your other tips this has been bookmarked and in the fullness of time I will move the information to Evernote. The book is impressively detailed and even on my Kindle the maps are readable - however in real life I will prefer paper!! Muchos gracias. :)
 

Tom Leonard

Boston Strong
Past OR future Camino
Walking Sarria-Santiago Sept. 17,2015
Hello Tom. What sort of accommodation did you stay in?
I went with MACS ADVENTURES in the UK and they were terrific . They lined up hotels in Sarria/Portomarin/Palas de Rei/Azura/Rua/Santiago .Only used a day pack as my one other bag was transferred ahead each day and waiting in room upon my arrival . Breakfasts were included . Cost was 800 euro but with time you could do plan lodging/transfer yourself . All lodging was good.
 
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JabbaPapa

"True Pilgrim"
Past OR future Camino
100 characters or fewer : see signature details
I'd go for a bit more than 100 K -- possibly up to 200, from Ponferrada -- but yeah, in April, just follow the Francès, as the others have said.

It's less daunting than you might think, and even on a first time, 100 K will seem *short* (I would once have been capable of covering that distance in 2 days, and there are people capable of covering it in one).

The 150 K distance would be from O Cebreiro BTW ; Triacastela is more friendly, but still short and a less arduous starting point.
 

HeidiL

Veteran Member
Past OR future Camino
Francés (2004-), Portugués, Madrid, 4/5 Plata, 1/8 Levante, 1/8 Lana, Augusta, hospitalera Grado.
Camino Portugues from Porto is fairly flat, not overly crowded and beautifully green. We walked it in April the year all rain records were broken, but a normal year should be better. (We still enjoyed it, but spent a bit extra on nice hotels so we'd dry up occasionally.)
 

M&A

New Member
Past OR future Camino
2019
I am planning on doing a solo short 100k pilgrimage starting mid April next year.

I am coming from Australia and then I will be a month short of my 69th birthday. I have not walked the Camino or indeed any long path before.

As far as I can determine the most popular route for this short pilgrimage is from Sarria along the final stages of at least two pilgrim routes.

This suggests that this route will be (relatively) busy. Are the Portugese or English routes perhaps better quieter alternatives; or does the Sarria commencing route have other over-riding compensations which make it a better route for a beginner??
Carfax, we just completed the last 100km of the Portuguese Camino from Porrino to Santiago. Most Pilgrims start this route in Porto or Tui. We chose Porrinoto commence as it's just about 100 km, we only had a week and wanted a few days in Santiago before going home. This was a lovely route which we throughly enjoyed despite some rain on our first days. There are some nice places to stay which I have posted on the forum. It's a good idea to book somewhere in Santiago in advance if you want somewhere close to the Cathedral an old town
 

Deborah Kostisin

New Member
Past OR future Camino
Camino Francigena (2014) September for 20 days to Roma, Camino Frances from La Puy to Rocamandour (2012) May for 24 days, Camino to Santiago from San Jean pied du port to Finisterre (2010) for 40 days Parts of the Camino northern route in Spain 5 days at a time in (2015) Via Francigina from Turin to Rome, Hospialaria volunteer in Viana Spain, volunteer on Via Francigina for September 17
I am planning on doing a solo short 100k pilgrimage starting mid April next year.

I am coming from Australia and then I will be a month short of my 69th birthday. I have not walked the Camino or indeed any long path before.

As far as I can determine the most popular route for this short pilgrimage is from Sarria along the final stages of at least two pilgrim routes.

This suggests that this route will be (relatively) busy. Are the Portugese or English routes perhaps better quieter alternatives; or does the Sarria commencing route have other over-riding compensations which make it a better route for a beginner??


Hello, I think that it depends what you are looking to get from your walk. The last 100 KM to Santiago on the french route will get you the experience of walking into Santiago to experience the ecstasy of all the pilgrims that have traveled over 500 miles to arrive there. It is quite a joyous event. You will ,I am sure, find people to walk into the city with and have a celebration as well as there are many who will also be starting at that point. But if you are looking to do a beautiful peaceful pilgrimage you may think about a different starting and ending point. There are some stretches of the walk that are breathtaking and so very enjoyable. There are very challenging parts as well. The last 100 km was noisy and crowded and not such a nice walk as it had been previously. This is to be expected as we were walking into a city and not through villages and countryside. So I think you may want to decide first what you want from your pilgrimage. Another suggestion, push the starting date as far into April as possible you won't want to miss the roses in Spain!
 

trevorcc

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
SJPD to Santiago 2013,2014, Camino de Levante Sept. 2016, Frances March 2018, planning 2020
I am planning on doing a solo short 100k pilgrimage starting mid April next year.

I am coming from Australia and then I will be a month short of my 69th birthday. I have not walked the Camino or indeed any long path before.

As far as I can determine the most popular route for this short pilgrimage is from Sarria along the final stages of at least two pilgrim routes.

This suggests that this route will be (relatively) busy. Are the Portugese or English routes perhaps better quieter alternatives; or does the Sarria commencing route have other over-riding compensations which make it a better route for a beginner??
Hi Carfax, Both times I walked the CF (Starting Sept) I was always able to find quiet time from Sarria to Santiago never had trouble in finding a bed. I have found that some people are noisy but all I do is stop and let them pass and take my time without rushing Santiago will be there to greet you when you get there.
Trevor (Melbourne, North Fitzroy if you want to chat about the Camino)
 
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Carfax

New Member
Past OR future Camino
Samos to SDC April and May 2016
SDC to Fisterra and Muxia) August 2016
I went with MACS ADVENTURES in the UK and they were terrific . They lined up hotels in Sarria/Portomarin/Palas de Rei/Azura/Rua/Santiago .Only used a day pack as my one other bag was transferred ahead each day and waiting in room upon my arrival . Breakfasts were included . Cost was 800 euro but with time you could do plan lodging/transfer yourself . All lodging was good.
Thanks Tom that was interesting. Raw Travel here in Melbourne (Australia, not Florida) provide the same service. :)
 

Carfax

New Member
Past OR future Camino
Samos to SDC April and May 2016
SDC to Fisterra and Muxia) August 2016
I'd go for a bit more than 100 K -- possibly up to 200, from Ponferrada -- but yeah, in April, just follow the Francès, as the others have said.

It's less daunting than you might think, and even on a first time, 100 K will seem *short* (I would once have been capable of covering that distance in 2 days, and there are people capable of covering it in one).

The 150 K distance would be from O Cebreiro BTW ; Triacastela is more friendly, but still short and a less arduous starting point.
Thanks - I am planning on finishing in Finisterre (from Samos) so should break the 100k mark!!
 

Carfax

New Member
Past OR future Camino
Samos to SDC April and May 2016
SDC to Fisterra and Muxia) August 2016
Hi Carfax, Both times I walked the CF (Starting Sept) I was always able to find quiet time from Sarria to Santiago never had trouble in finding a bed. I have found that some people are noisy but all I do is stop and let them pass and take my time without rushing Santiago will be there to greet you when you get there.
Trevor (Melbourne, North Fitzroy if you want to chat about the Camino)
Thanks Trevor, we will almost be neighbours as I am moving to Brunswick at the end of November. Will follow up in early 2016 once I have made bookings...
 

trevorcc

Active Member
Past OR future Camino
SJPD to Santiago 2013,2014, Camino de Levante Sept. 2016, Frances March 2018, planning 2020
Thanks Trevor, we will almost be neighbours as I am moving to Brunswick at the end of November. Will follow up in early 2016 once I have made bookings...
Great to let you know I will be up in Queensland from December 21 till the end of Jan. 2016. I am also currently planning my 3rd Camino for 2016, I intend to do a few routes this time. if you have any questions give me a call on 0414524410.
Trevor
 

Mike Savage

So many friends to meet . . . so little time
Past OR future Camino
Camino Francés,Inglés
Muxia/Finisterre
Português Coastal
Português Central
Sanabrés
I am planning on doing a solo short 100k pilgrimage starting mid April next year.

I am coming from Australia and then I will be a month short of my 69th birthday. I have not walked the Camino or indeed any long path before.

As far as I can determine the most popular route for this short pilgrimage is from Sarria along the final stages of at least two pilgrim routes.

This suggests that this route will be (relatively) busy. Are the Portugese or English routes perhaps better quieter alternatives; or does the Sarria commencing route have other over-riding compensations which make it a better route for a beginner??

I just got home from walking the Francés, Inglés, and Finisterre/Muxia on October 16th and this is how it was for me. I am in good physical shape and had a very light backpack, I don't recall any significant difference as far as physical challenges. They all had difficult and pleasant sections.

The Francés definitely had many times more people walking. If there was a particularly large group then I would pass them and there was "space" between the groups that was quiet and I could be with my own thoughts. The availability of places to eat and sleep was excellent and there were plenty of people to talk with and share experiences in many different languages. I really enjoyed talking with everyone including the people who had just started as they were very excited to finally be there on their camino and walking. This helped my excitement level to be nearer to where it was at the beginning of my walk.

The Inglés was my biggest mental challenge and I almost failed on the very first day. The rain, the difficulty (for me) of finding the beginning of the route, Pilgrim office being closed so I couldn't get a credential, so many busy streets and traffic and detours. I thought I would never find a place to sleep or eat. When I finally found an albergue it was locked and there was a phone number to call for the hospitalera. I had no phone service. I was definitely not prepared for the challenges of the Inglés. Things did work out though and after the first day it was a beautiful walk with pleasant scenery. I found the language barrier quite a challenge too. I met up with a man from Spain the first day and we walked together into Santiago. He was patient with my poor Spanish. For the 5 days I walked the Inglés I saw 7 total pilgrims three of which spoke English. Those were the only English speakers I saw the whole week. Interaction with the locals was minimal except for a few very friendly and welcoming older people. Having phone service and speaking Gallegos or at least better Spanish would have helped tremendously. One further note. I met a man from Virginia in the USA who spoke no Spanish and was walking short days. I saw him again in Santiago where we had dinner and said that he enjoyed the Camino Inglés and did not mention any particular problem that I can recall. I know he made it with no knowledge of Spanish.

The route to Finisterre/Muxia was well marked and I was surprised how many people there were walking out of Santiago. The people thinned out after a few hours so there were not too many. The first night the albergue was full but no problem after that. Most people walking spoke English and most bars/albergues did not. People overall did not seem to be in a hurry and there was plenty of "alone" time. Beautiful scenery and an adequate amount of bars/albergues/stores but think twice before you pass one.

I found each route to have different challenges and strong points, I can recall many/most towns I stayed in on the Francés, not many on the Inglés and only Finisterre/Muxia on that route. Good luck finding the right route to suit your needs.

Mike
 
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Carfax

New Member
Past OR future Camino
Samos to SDC April and May 2016
SDC to Fisterra and Muxia) August 2016
Thanks that is most interesting. I am fated to start on the CF but hope to make it to Finisterre before my time runs out!!
 

Maryindigo

Member
Past OR future Camino
Past Camino Sarria to Santiago 12 April 2016
Planning the next one !
I am planning on doing a solo short 100k pilgrimage starting mid April next year.

I am coming from Australia and then I will be a month short of my 69th birthday. I have not walked the Camino or indeed any long path before.

As far as I can determine the most popular route for this short pilgrimage is from Sarria along the final stages of at least two pilgrim routes.

This suggests that this route will be (relatively) busy. Are the Portugese or English routes perhaps better quieter alternatives; or does the Sarria commencing route have other over-riding compensations which make it a better route for a beginner??

Hi Carafax
I am walking Sarria to Santiago from April 12th my first Camino also. Very excited to get going at this stage. Maybe will meet you on the route. Buen Camino !
 

Tom Leonard

Boston Strong
Past OR future Camino
Walking Sarria-Santiago Sept. 17,2015
Hello Maryindigo
I did the Sarria-Santiago at 68 yrs. last September as a solo walker . Its very safe and has some challenging hills . In the late September time it is less crowded and cooler . I had a company transfer bag ahead to prearranged hotels which helped make the daily walks easier . I believe this route ( as a first timer ) is very good but I don't know about the others you mentioned but the forum will .
TRAIN for this , use trekking poles , Vaseline your feet every morning and most importantly , enjoy the walk and take your time. At 69 it will mean even more .
 

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“All” Albergues on the Camino Frances in one pdf
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A selection of favorite albergues on the Camino Francés Ton van Tilburg
Favorite Albergues along the Camino Frances
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Profile maps of all 34 stages of the Camino Frances ivar
Profile maps of all 34 stages of the Camino Frances
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