Camino Guide 1.2: When to go? Walk or Cycle? Where to Stay?
When to go on the Camino?
From the month of May until September is the most popular time of the year to travel the Camino due to the more comfortable weather conditions. Bear in mind that not all Caminos share the same weather conditions. Travelling in the height of summer on the southern routes is not recommended as temperatures can reach up to 40 °C (104°F). During the winter months the weather in Northern Spain is cold and wet with snow in mountainous areas.
To Walk or to cycle the Camino?
- Traditional pilgrim experience.
- Time to take in the sites and environment.
- The best way to experience the camaraderie of the Camino.
- All paths are suitable for walkers.
- More sociable.
- Takes more time.
- More expensive as walking takes twice as much time as cycling.
- Takes less time and so can be fitted into a summer holiday.
- On the Camino Francés, it takes 14 days to complete rather than 36 days by foot.
- Best for the longer southern routes, which have very long distances between towns.
- Travelling at such a high speed -you can miss out on the sociable side of the Camino.
- Requires more equipment and planning.
- Some paths and routes are not suitable for cycling so more time is spent on roads
- Besides camping, refugios are the most inexpensive form of accommodation.
- It is part of an authentic and real pilgrimage.
- Some hostels providing meals included in their price.
- Unique to the Camino de Santiago.
- Cannot be booked in advance.
- Demand is high during the summer months.
- Most are based on dormitories with double bunk beds.
- Some are not open throughout the year.
- Basic – no frills accommodation.
- Ensures that you are well rested for the next day of walking.
- You will always have a clean and comfortable room to return to for the evening.
- Private rooms and bathrooms.
- More expensive
- Not part of a traditional pilgrim experience.
- You may not meet as many fellow pilgrims