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Reservations

Discussion in 'General Chat' started by Maureen3, Sep 27, 2017.

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  1. Maureen3

    Maureen3 Member

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    ¡Hola! I'm starting my Camino in Sarria in mid-October and am trying to decide if reservations are necessary. I'm not opposed to making reservations, but I'm just not certain how far I'll get each. Does anyone have experience traveling this section during time of year? Thanks.
     
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  2. Wily

    Wily Camino Francés 2016; Camino Portugués 2017

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    Hey Mauren - By all accounts, the Camino has been very busy this month. That also means that a significant number of pilgrims will be finishing up their Caminos in October thus walking those final kilometers from Sarria to Santiago. Plus, there will always be that group of pilgrims beginning their walk in Sarria so as to qualify for the Compostela.

    By mid-October, I don't think reservations will be as crucial an issue as it might have been earlier in the walking season. However, I would suggest that you reserve in Sarria and Santiago just to be on the safe side. One of the positives about that section of the Camino is that there are more albergues than on some other parts of the CF so as to accomodate the number of pilgrims that this section of the route sees. Although you don't know how far you plan to walk each day, if you do finish early in the afternoon, you shouldn't have any difficulty with lodging. If it does appear particularly busy with folks vying for beds, ask an hospitalero to phone ahead for you to reserve a bed or use a website like Gronze.com to book ahead at places using Booking.com. Keep in mind too that many pilgrims will be heading to the daily destinations suggested by Brierley. If you stop short or go on past his recommendations, you will probably find a greater availability of beds.

    Finally, let me iffer you two recommendations of albergues where I stayed. In Sarria, check out Albergue O Durmiñento and The Last Stamp in Santiago.

    Buen Camino!
     
  3. Maureen3

    Maureen3 Member

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    Hey Wily! It's amazing how quickly and thoroughly you respond to everyone's questions on this forum. I appreciate all the good tips!

    Buen Camino!
     
  4. Crepes4Suzette

    Crepes4Suzette Well-Known Member

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    Maureen, make sure to take good rain gear setting out at that time of year, OK? They don't turn heat on anywhere that I found in Spain until some unknown time after mid-October, and if you get wet or chilled to the bone, your options for getting warmed up can be a hot shower and crawling into your cozy sleeping bag......or whatever dry clothes you have left. And maybe some Caldo Gallego in Galicia. Other things that helped were a plastic inner bag, and making sure to put your rain cover onto your backpack the second you start feeling drops. If you can get lodging with a dryer, that helps also because if your clothes get damp and the weather continues to be damp, it can take more than a day for them to dry. No fun to wear or lug damp clothes!
     
  5. Maureen3

    Maureen3 Member

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    Hey Crepes4Suzette! Talk about serendipitous! I just stumbled upon your 2016 review of Albergue Casa Cruceiro de Ferreiros on Tripadvisor, when I received the alert that you had responded to my forum question. Thanks for the reality check regarding the importance of rain gear and finding lodging with a dryer. I know that it rains over half the days in October, but I think I had the mindset that I'll get the "good" half. I'll hope for clear skies, but prepare for the rain! Thanks for the tips.
     
  6. Crepes4Suzette

    Crepes4Suzette Well-Known Member

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    That's so funny.....I'd forgotten that I use the same name for both! You're doing your preparation well! If you stay at Casa Cruceiro de Ferreiros, I think you'll enjoy it. I ran across a group of New Agers there who were doing the Camino and then heading off to Avesbury for a celebration of some sort. The lodging building is woodsy and contemporary and has good views.
     
  7. BROWNCOUNTYBOB

    BROWNCOUNTYBOB Well-Known Member

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    A week ow 10 days ago in mid Sept the CF was overwhelmed with pilgrms and entire towns were completo by early afternoon. Some kind person. Arranged a large van to transport the group to the next town. The last few days it seems that the pilgrim traffic has reduced and more pilgrims are showing up without reservations and gettin beds. Today we walked to San Martin del Camino and a group of 8 showed up and beds were avalable. Bob
     
  8. Maureen3

    Maureen3 Member

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    So it turns out that reservations are necessary on the Sarria - Santiago route this week. I got the last bed at the alburgue in Arzua last night. Today is a holiday so more Spaniards are on the Camino this week, and the weather has been unbelievable, sunny and 80, so people are taking advantage of it and walking. The quiet moments of early morning and late afternoon have been spectacular. The scenery and people are amazing. And more than once El Camino has provided. Off to Santiago tomorrow if my blistered feet will carry me one more day. Buen Camino!
     
  9. RJS

    RJS Well-Known Member

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    Hi Maurine

    I am pleased to hear that you managed to get the last bed at the Albergue in Arzua and wonder what you would have done if this hadn’t been the case – Maybe you would have caught a taxi and found somewhere that did have a bed ??– Anyway, thankfully you didn’t have to worry as you snagged the last bed :)



    I did wonder about Wily’s post when I read the thread as he had told us all on here that he booked all of his own accommodation for The Camino Frances in Advance, also he walked the route in the Spring, so I don’t know what he was basing his “Advice” On

    But, although I left Saint Jean Pied de port in October on my Camino Frances (A good few years ago), I split my own Camino Frances into two, and returned to do the second section in August, so, as I hadn’t walked this section of the route in October I didn’t say make a post of my own – Also you seemed so happy with Wily’s post, I didn’t want to question his advice again (We were already having a difference of opinion on anther thread at the same time)



    Anyway, today you will be in Santiago de Compostela later today and be sampling the delights of what this beautiful city has to offer. Your blisters will soon heal and I am sure that you will Love Santiago de Compostela ;-)

    Best Regards

    Rob
     
  10. Wily

    Wily Camino Francés 2016; Camino Portugués 2017

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    Hey Maureen - It sounds like your Camino is going well except for maybe the blisters. I, too, have walked with sore feet, but one trudges on, don't they? Not far to Santiago now! You'll make it!

    I have to agree with you about the quiet early morning hours on the Camino. They were my favorite plus I thoroughly enjoyed hearing the European Cuckoos across the Spanish countryside at that time of day. It was the best time of day to experience the peacefulness of the Camino. But, as you have found out, the people, both locals and your fellow pilgrims, make the Camino what it is. Otherwise, it's just another long walk.

    Enjoy Santiago! Hopefully, you'll be lucky enough to see the Botafumeiro at the Pilgrim's Mass. Spectacular and emotional at the same time! If you've planned some time in Santiago there is quite a lot to do plus so many great eateries. Buen Camino!
     
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  11. Maureen3

    Maureen3 Member

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    Hey All! I arrived in Santiago! It has been quite a journey. I sure appreciate the comments/advice from fellow peregrines. And although this 117.3! km trek iwas not a cakewalk, I certainly have great respect for those of you that have completed the entire route. It was fairly high mileage each day if you follow the sections. My advice to others would be to throw In an extra day or two. Next time (can't believe I'm saying that given the condition of my feet) I would take the road less traveled. Perhaps the the Primitivo or Portuguese Way. Anyway, just wanted to give you a progress report. Will enjoy Santiago and then head to Muxia and Finisterra (on the bus). Buen Camino!
     
  12. UnkleHammy

    UnkleHammy Well-Known Member

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    Congratulations on completion!
     
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  13. RJS

    RJS Well-Known Member

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    Well Done in achieving your Primero Compostela – And I look forwards to hearing about which Camino you chose for secunda – The Primitivo was one of my Favourites, but to be honest, I never did walk a Bad One :)

    Enjoy your bus ride out to Muxia and Finisterra as well as your time in Santiago

    Best Regards

    Rob
     
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  14. Kernel Philip

    Kernel Philip New Member

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    Dear Camino Friends,
    I am a new Pilgrim and Forum member and much impressed with all the kindness and helpful discussions! I am flying into Barritz late afternoon of Wednesday October 25 from U.S. and hope to get to St. Jean the same day. Does anyone have a recommendation for where to stay there at this time of year and whether I should make a reservation? I know that many Albergues are starting to close.
    Many thanks,
    Philip
     
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  15. Wily

    Wily Camino Francés 2016; Camino Portugués 2017

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    Hey Philip - First, welcome to the Forum. When I was in SJPP, I stayed at the Albergue Ultreia. Unfortunately, according to their website, they are now closed. When you get to SJPP, go directly to the Pilgrim's Office on Rue de la Citadelle right in the heart of old town. They will be able to direct you to albergues that are still open. There are also hotels in town so there will be some place to stay. Here is a pretty comprehensive list of albergues on the CF. Many have websites, so if you feel like doing the research before leaving, you might be able to get a better idea as to which ones are open in SJPP and in the other towns along your route.

    https://www.caminoteca.com/img/cms/list-of-albergues-on-camino-frances-2017.pdf

    Buen Camino and enjoy!
     
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  16. Galloglaigh

    Galloglaigh Member

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    If you are arriving in Biarritz, it's is a short bus ride to Bayonne rail station where there are two trains to St Jean. One at 14:50 and the other at 18:12. Takes about an hour.

    https://www.rome2rio.com/s/Bayonne-France/64220-Saint-Jean-Pied-de-Port-France

    It is only a short distance from St Jean rail station to the town - about 1/2 mile and there is plenty of accommodation. Have stayed at the Hotel Ramuntcho in the past few months but Booking.com will be able to show you other options.

    Unless you are late arriving in Biarritz would skip staying there and move onto St Jean as soon as you can.
     
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  17. UnkleHammy

    UnkleHammy Well-Known Member

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    Although Bayonne is a reasonable city I recommend getting to SJPP as soon as you can. It is a nice town and having a day there is not a penalty.
     
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  18. NinaMarie

    NinaMarie New Member

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    Reservations for the Roncesvalles or Orisson are musts. I'd recommend reserving for the first week, just 'til you get the hang of things. Even in September into early October, a busy season, we regularly ran into people who never made as single reservation and found rooms at the same albergues we were staying at. The Camino should be less traveled when you're there, so I suspect you won't need to reserve ahead, although you can certainly do it while on the road if you want the extra sense of security.
     
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  19. Kernel Philip

    Kernel Philip New Member

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    Thank you one and all! These are excellent suggestions. I had already decided to try to make it all the way to SJPP (great to see how even Forum Folks do acronyms!) from the airport. IF my flight arrives on time (4:50 pm), I should be able to make the 18:12 train from UnkleHammy's copyrightable, "Reasonable Bayonne".
    Many thanks to Wily and Galloglaigh for the address of the Pilgrim's office and accommodation recommendations. I expect the "PO" will be closed by 7:30 or 8:00 PM when I arrive, but will try to google the hours.
    Many thanks to NinaMarie for the excellent advice to to book ahead in Roncessvalles or Orisson. Any preferences? The days are getting shorter, and I will need to get my Pilgrim's passport and anything else needed in SJPP Thursday morning before I set forth.
    Finally, the literature and old Forum posts are full of warnings about snow in the winter and the high road to Roncessvalles being closed. Is there a date when that happens. The extended weather forecast for Roncessvalles for next Thursday shows a high of 20 and low of 11.

    Again many many thanks for the excellent help and welcome to this august community.

    Philip
     
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  20. UnkleHammy

    UnkleHammy Well-Known Member

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    About one half of the effort to cross the mountain is used to get to Orisson. Even though it is about one forth the distance. Unless you are in quite good shape plan on staying at Orisson and then going on to Rochavells the next morning.

    The weather is unpredictable in/on the mountains, so be sure to ask at the P.O. about what to expect. Eventually they close the mountain route and you have to use the Val Carlos route. Or if you want there is a mini bus that goes from Saint Jean to Rochavells each morning.
     
    Last edited: Oct 21, 2017
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  21. James Orrock

    James Orrock Active Member

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    Hola, peregrinos / peregrinas! My much anticipated Camino Frances commencing late September (last month) has been cancelled due to the death of my mother. RIP, dear Winifred. She was on the planet for 91 years and had an ordinary / amazing life. Survived the Depression as a child growing up in Newcastle-on-Tyne, England and served in the Wrens / RAF during WWII, married a handsome Wellington bomber tailgunner, emigrated to Australia as a 10 Pound Pom in 1951, made a new life and started a family in a faraway land etc. Anyway, I hope to walk the Camino sometime next year. We all make plans but life just happens every day around the edges until we take our last breath. So I don't need to think about making reservations (or not) for some time it seems. Hope all is well with you.
     
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  22. Crepes4Suzette

    Crepes4Suzette Well-Known Member

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    Oh James, I'm so sorry. It sounds like she was loved and had such a full life. I hope you can take the time you need to grieve her loss and be on your way in peace to your Camino in good time. The best to you.
     
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  23. James Orrock

    James Orrock Active Member

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    Many thanks for your kind words and wishes, Suzette.
     
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  24. hindsfeet

    hindsfeet Donating Member Donating Member

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    James.......I'm so sorry to hear of your loss. It sounds like your mother was a very strong woman and adventurous as well! May your heart be filled with peace, and your love and fond memories stay fresh. The loss of a mother can never be replaced, but the love of a mother can never be lost. I love your words that we all make plans but life just happens every day around the edges....so true. Lord bless you James!
     
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  25. James Orrock

    James Orrock Active Member

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    Your words of comfort and wisdom are much appreciated, hindsfeet. Muchos gracias.
     
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  26. Galloglaigh

    Galloglaigh Member

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    Sorry to hear about the loss of such a strong and resourceful woman. When you come over to Spain you might want to take some time to visit Newcastle and travel up the coast to Lindisfarne, one of the first outposts of early Christianity in England. There are also similar sites within Newcastle at Jarrow where Saint Bede lived and taught. In addition, the locals (called Geordies) are some of the most sociable and helpful people you'll ever come across - apart from the Irish.
     
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  27. RJS

    RJS Well-Known Member

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    I am Really Sorry to hear about your Mother James – It sounded as though she was a Wonderful Lady that Lived her Life to the Full – And born not too far away from me :)



    Maybe once some time has passed, you might decide to walk The Camino Frances in memory of her – I have met several people walking Camino’s in memory of loved ones over the years including a young Polish Girl, Asia who was walking The Camino Frances in memory of her Grandmother who had recently passed away and also for her Mother who considered herself too old to walk “The Way” – Both of these ladies having had their freedom to travel restricted because at that time, Poland was behind “The Iron Curtain”



    My own Mother is now 96 and although she now lives in a residential home, I still visit her regularly and think the world of her :)



    Best Regards

    Rob
     
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  28. Wily

    Wily Camino Francés 2016; Camino Portugués 2017

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    Hey James - My deepest condolences to you and your family. Regardless of our age, I don't think any of us are ever really ready for the loss of a parent. So, pleased to hear that her 91 years were amazing. Embrace the wonderful years that you enjoyed with her. Take care my friend.
     
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  29. Jose

    Jose Well-Known Member

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    Am on the Camino right now and have not found that reservations are necessary. As a matter of fact, I find I do better entering a place and seeing where I want to be and asking for a room. NO PROBLEM. YET. And I am now after Sarria where the crowds suddenly appear. I love it. As a matter of fact the couple of times I have made reservations in the last days thinking that it would be more populated and it is, I have opted for something that I would NOT have chose on site. It´s easy. Trust it.
     
  30. raymond john

    raymond john Well-Known Member

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    Hi James
    I'm very sorry to hear about the loss of your Mother. Nothing ever prepare you for such a devastating loss where word never seem enough to express the sorrow and emptiness you must be experiencing at this time.
    I'm going to be on the Camino next week closing down our Albergue in Rabanal de Camino. We have a Benedictine Monastery next door and I will arrange for Fr Javier to have a Mass said for your Mother and your families intentions . Can you please let me have your mother name.
    I would like to share this poem ;- The Ship, By Bishop Brent
    What is dying
    I am standing on the seashore, a ship sails in the morning breeze and starts for the ocean.
    She is an object of beauty and I stand watching her till at last she fades on the horizon and someone at my side says: "She is gone."
    Gone!
    Where
    Gone from my sight that is all.
    She is just as large in the masts, hull and spars as she was when I saw her, and just as able to bear her load of living freight to its destination.
    The diminished size and total loss of sight is in me, not in her, and just at the moment when someone at my side says,
    "She is gone"
    there are others who are watching her coming over the horizon and other voices take up a glad shout:
    "There she comes!"
    and that is dying.


    Bishop Brent

    Remember; Just because you can't see your mother doesn't mean she not there , she is only a pray away and will always be with you eternally in your Heart, Mind & Soul

    Raymond John

     
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