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The French Way - St Jean Pied-de-Port to Santiago de Compostela

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The famous Camino de Santiago, also known as St James’ Way and the French Way, is a wonderful 500 miles trail which has been walked by pilgrims for over 1000 years. For most pilgrims, the Camino de Santiago ends at the magnificent Romanesque Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela – reputedly the final resting place of St. James the Apostle, although a further few days of walking takes the pilgrim to ‘the end of the earth’ at Finisterre with its downward pointing scallop shell signifying the actual ending, and where pilgrims once burned their boots.  

We feature the complete Camino de Santiago route from St Jean Pied-de-Port in France all the way to Finisterre (End of the Earth) in Galicia, as well as the lesser known, but increasingly popular Portuguese Way, from Tui to Santiago de Compostela. 

We organise pilgrim journeys for the complete route as well as umpteen combinations of the various in-between stages – we tailor our itineraries to suit you. Our Pilgrims on the Camino de Santiago range from solo walkers to large organised groups who come from far and wide across the globe to embark on this unique adventure. With our profound knowledge of the routes and our established, reliable, local support along the entire route, New Experience Pilgrims has the expertise and devotion to offer an individually arranged spiritual journey of a lifetime; one we are certain will hold a special place in your heart forever. 

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The Experience 

Without doubt this journey is about more than the usual joys of walking! The Camino may be walked for religious or non-religious reasons or perhaps just the desire to hop out of the fast lane to reflect on life and refresh the soul. For whatever reason, a very special atmosphere arises from the comradeship quickly established between pilgrims of many nationalities - each walking for their own personal reasons. With our fully flexible stages and accommodation grades you can walk all or part of the Camino – many walk a week each year until completed… and then start over again! The experience is recommended for everyone from Church Groups to the solo walker, all joining together at the Cathedral in Santiago to witness or participate in the daily Pilgrims’ Mass – an intensely memorable and moving experience.

The Walking

Walking the Camino involves average daily distances of about 14 miles and follows well marked paths with good surfaces. Some days are longer and where possible we offer a split with accommodation midway. In more remote regions, where accommodation is sparse, this is not always possible and it is necessary to keep on going. We provide a step by step guide to the trek and location of your overnight hotel along with other supporting notes such as language and history. You may wish to spend an extra night in one of the cities exploring its architecture and culture, especially Santiago at the journey’s end to relax and reflect on your journey.   

Variations

Our basic itineraries can be varied when possible. You may make the walking days shorter by adding additional nights, take rest days in one of the existing stops or stay longer at the beginning or end to explore the historical and vibrant cities. When available, an upgrade in accommodation standard can be made for those seeking a more luxurious experience, luggage may be transferred or carried and accommodation can be on a room and breakfast basis or with dinner booked (except in cities) to ensure the hungry pilgrim is well fed at the end of a long day. Just contact us with your wishes and we will provide a quotation.

Luggage Transfers

Luggage may be transported from each hotel to the next enabling you to travel with a day rucksack. Unlike our other treks, baggage transfer is an optional extra as many Perigrinos (Pilgrims) prefer to travel light and carry their own. See price section for costs.

Walk Grading

St Jean Pied-de-Port to Pamplona – Challenging with Moderate option. Total for standard itinerary:- Ascent 1960m, Descent 1670m, 42 miles.

Pamplona to Burgos - Easy, with long days. Total for standard itinerary:- Ascent 2580m, Descent 1930m, 135 miles.

Burgos to Leon - Easy, with long days. Total for standard itinerary:- Ascent 1250m, Descent 990m, 112 miles.

Leon to O Cebreiro - Moderate, with long days. Total for standard itinerary:- Ascent 1930m, Descent 1570m, 77 miles.

O Cebreiro to Santiago - Easy, with long days. Total for standard itinerary:- Ascent 1590m, Descent 2270m, 92 miles. 


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Further information about Camino - All the Way and walking holidays there.Further information about Camino - All the Way and our walking holidays there...

The French Way - St Jean Pied-de-Port to Santiago de Compostela

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Journeying in a westward direction, many aspects of Spain will be witnessed from the high mountains of the Pyrenees to the flat plains of the Meseta; vast Gothic Cathedrals and tiny ‘ermitas’; differing cultures from the colourful Basque lands to mystical Celtic Galicia. Walking the full route from St Jean Pied-de-Port in France to Santiago in one go takes at least 35 days, but offers the ultimate Camino experience. However, time and practicality dictate that most can only manage one stage at a time taking several years to complete the full route.  For this reason we have divided the Camino into stages of 7-11 nights to offer flexibility, depending on time available and ease of access to/from start and end points.

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