How hard is the camino?
There are different types of difficulty on the camino. Some of the difficulty is because of the length of the walk and some is because of walking uphill. Most of the camino is well trodden and safe besides the occasional slippery slope in wet weather.
People also experience difficulty because of the weight they are carrying. On the #CaminoLB we are taking two cars that will carry people’s bags everyday so this will be less of a problem.
Having the right shoes and clothing will make the camino more enjoyable. With long distances, chafing and blisters can be what makes the camino difficult.
We have set out details of each of the stages on the route so that you can see how difficult it is likely to be. Most of the northern route that we are doing is flat and easy to moderate.
On most of the route it is possible to do some of the route and get a taxi for the remainder. It is also possible to take a day out and meet up with everyone at lunchtime and /or the end of the day.
There are many stretches that can be managed with a wheelchair and you can find out more on this website and by the various forums and posts you will find by searching ‘camino de santiago with disabilities’.
We had people with all sorts of abilities come on the last camino and we just helped when it was needed and everybody did ok!
Before the Camino
Training, training, training- do lots of walking and make sure you wear any new shoes in.
Apply for a pilgrim passport (https://www.csj.org.uk/) and you can get it stamped on the way to prove you walked the camino.
You can budget from around 25-30 euros per day plus flights (and transfers to and from the airport if arriving or leaving in the middle of the camino)
Food and drink is inexpensive in most places. If you stay in pilgrims hostels they are anything from free to 10 euros a night. If you want more private and comfortable accommodation it is usually from 30-60 euros a night.
The nearest airport at the start of the camino is Asturias.
You can come over on a ferry from Plymouth or Portsmouth to Santander and get a bus or train to Aviles from there.
The nearest airport at the end of the camino is Santiago de Compostela airport. La Coruna airport is an hour away by train or bus.
Getting to and from the airports
People joining at different stages and their options from airport to Camino (links to the bus and train maps/timetables).
There is a regular bus from Asturias Airport to Aviles- when you get to arrivals, turn right outside the entrance for the bus stop.
There are direct trains from Aviles to Ribadeo days 1-6 http://www.renfe.com/EN/viajeros/feve/mapas/mapa_ferrol_oviedo_gijon.html
Santiago and La Coruna airports
There are regular buses from Santiago and La Coruna Airport to city centre bus stations.
La Coruna and Santiago are just over an hour apart with good train and bus services between them.
There are direct buses from Santiago and/or La Coruna most of the stops on the route:
https://www.alsa.com/en/web/bus/home (Vilalba & Ribadeo only)
https://www.arriva.gal/en/rutas (Lourenza, Gontan )
http://www.empresafreire.com/html/ingles/seccion3a.php (Arzua, O Pedrouzo, Sobrado dos Monxes)
Taxis are plentiful and cheap in Spain but most outside of cities are operated by local individual taxi drivers. Either google the towns you want to get a taxi between and call taxi drivers directly- they are likely to only speak Spanish- or ask us for help.
What to take
The weather is changeable in this part of Spain and at this time of year can be anything from warm and sunny, overcast, rain and hail storms. When it gets closer to the time, check www.accuweather.com and be prepared for any weather!
Here is a starter for 10….
- first aid kit, plasters, blister kits
- water bottle
- walking shoes/trainers
App. Buen Camino- download Camino Norte/North guide for 4.90 euro