Discover Camino Invierno
History of the Camino Invierno (The Winter Way)
Starting in Ponferrada, a historical town with ties to the Knights Templar, the Camino Invierno is a route filled with historical interest.
The name The Winter Way may make you think this is a route which should be walked in the Winter. However, it has actually been given that name for another reason. During medieval times, pilgrims walking the main Camino Frances route would come to Ponferrada and then have to climb over the O Cebreiro mountain (1300m high) which during the winter would usually be covered in snow. To avoid this, they diverted south to skirt round this and walked through the four provinces of Galicia to reach Santiago. Hence the name - the Winter Way!
It actually wasn't recognised by the Pilgrim's Office as an official Pilgrim's route until 2015, meaning that it is a far quieter route than the busier Camino Frances to the north and perfect for those who prefer some solitude.
Why Walk the Camino with Macs Adventure
Macs Adventure has been running self guided pilgrimages on the Camino de Santiago since 2008. As soon as we walked the Camino, we knew that there was something completely unique about the route and were excited to share it with the rest of the world.
From humble beginnings, we now send over 2000 Pilgrims every year on the Way, each of them finding their own adventure on this spiritual route. We wanted to provide the freedom to choose your route, itinerary and travel companions and to take the Camino at your own pace.
We know how daunting it can be, setting off on an adventure of this scale and we quickly realised how important it was to have amazing partners on the ground in Spain to deal with any issues that you might come across. We are proud to say that our Spanish team are outstanding and should you have the slightest issue, they will fall over themselves to help you out.
We offer a flexible, tailor-made Camino experience that gets you in comfortable, friendly overnight accommodation in local B&Bs and guesthouses. We carry your bags to lighten your load so you can concentrate on simply putting one foot in front of the other and enjoying the unique culture, food and architecture of this less-travelled part of Spain. No hostels, no shared dorms, no heavy bags on your back, no rushing along to secure your bed for the night. You can book with confidence that we have it all covered for you.
We want to showcase our expertise, by giving you all the resources you will ever need. In the planning stage, we have free guides, comprehensive videos and a host of staff with their own Compostela certificate, waiting to answer your questions. On the route, we use high-quality digital mapping as well as the best maps and guidebooks to make sure you find your way.
We love the Camino and our main aim is to make sure that you do too.
Accommodation on the Camino - What to Expect
Probably one of the most daunting prospects of planning any trip is finding the right places to stay! However, Macs Adventure takes this out of your hands when you book one of our Camino packages and book all your accommodation in advance for you, leaving you free to enjoy the walk! Here is what to expect from your accommodations on the way!
Variety - you can expect to be staying in a large variety of different types of accommodations on any of our Camino routes. This ranges from small family-run B&B's or "pensiones", to "casa rurales" which are refurbished country cottages, to slightly larger hotels in the bigger cities and towns. Sometimes the smaller accomodations may be called "hostales" but please don't worry - this is not the typical bunk room you may expect in a hostel. On quieter routes like the Camino Invierno and Camino Primitivo, where there is not as much accommodation, you may also stay in some more rustic rural guesthouses and you may have a transfer to take you there. You will always have your own private room and bathroom. We always aim to book you into the most personal and charming options available so that your experience is an authentic one. Staying in a variety of accommodation like this is all part of the experience, but it is important to keep this in mind to manage your expectations, as if you stay in a slightly fancier place one night, it may not always be the same the next night!
Air-Con? - generally, the smaller accommodations we use do not offer air-conditioning as they are in older buildings and of a more traditional style. Most of the time there will be some sort of fan in the room to cool you down during the hotter summer months!
Breakfasts - again, the types of breakfast on offer at your accommodation vary hugely. One morning, you may find a true feast presented to you with everything from fresh pastries and bread to cooked eggs. Other mornings, you may find the selection slightly more limited with just bread and cheese on offer. Generally, when you have a long walking day ahead of you it's best not to fill up too much anyway, but you will soon become accustomed to the pilgrim way of life!
Upgrades - you may be surprised to learn that there are actually some very luxurious upgrade options available along the Camino which you may be tempted to upgrade to for a night or two! If this sounds like your idea of bliss, you may want even want to consider our Camino in Style tour which includes the finest boutique hotels and country manor houses (pazos). Otherwise, speak to us about perhaps upgrading to one of the famous Paradores, a range of state-owned hotels which are usually very luxurious and housed in old historical buildings. There are Paradors in several locations across the Camino routes including in Monforte de Lemos on the Camino Invierno.