Camino Frances Route

camino frances route

Welcome to an English language website for the Camino Frances or French Route of the Camino Frances (Way of St. James). This is the main camino de santiago pilgrimage route in Spain going from St Jean Pied Du Port in the French side of the pyrennees to Santiago De Compostella in Galicia. The other is the Via De La Plata going from Seville in the south of Spain via Astorga in the north.

Some of the contents of this site come from my first camino website and it has now been updated and modernised for 2019.

I have walked most parts of this route more than once. I walked the section from St Juan to Burgos most recently in March 2004. My partner and I have walked the section from Burgos to Sarria in 2003 and I walked the whole camino frances in 2000.

The comments in the place descriptions below are my own personal and subjective impressions of the places I visited. They reflect my own likes and dislikes and they should be treated accordingly when read.

If you are considering a camino adventure then take a look at my camino packing guide. It’s important to get advice from people who have walked the Camino regarding what to pack. Pack light in the mantra, but there are a coiilpe of other bits and pieces that you will need.

My Camino Frances Diary

Pamplona to St Jean Pied De Port Hostel Pamplona to St Jean Pied De Port - The refuge at "St Jean Pied De Port. Route segment: 1 Tuesday 26th September 2000 This was in fact a taxi ride to "St Jean Pied De Port" from "Pamplona" where I arrived, by plane from "Madrid", the night before. I stayed in a hotel in the center of "Pamplona"… Read more...
st jean pied de port to roncesvalles St Jean Pied De Port to Roncesvalles - A valley just outside of "St Jean Pied De Port" Route segment: 2 Wednesday 27th September 2000 This proves to be a baptism of fire. I have heard that you follow the yellow arrows. There are very few arrows out of "St Jean Pied De Port" and at one particular… Read more...
The recalcitrant cows Roncesvalles to Zubiri - The recalcitrant cows Route segment: 3 Thursday 28th September 2000 This is my second day of walking the Camino. After the sleepless night I am tired but want to get a move on, as today is a 20 KM trek. The official guide lists "Larrasoaña" as the destination but it… Read more...
The refuge at "Larrasoaña" Zubiri to Pamplona - The refuge at "Larrasoaña" Route segment: 4 Friday 29th September 2000 The horrible cement works just outside of "Zubiri" The bridge at "Larrasoaña" The first bridge over the river just outside of "Pamplona" at "Trinidad de Arre" The view of "Pamplona" from the park around the citadel Read more...
Can't go anwhere in the world without coming across an Irish Pub ! pamplona to puente la reina Pamplona to Puente La Reina - Can't go anwhere in the world without coming across an Irish Pub ! Route segment: 5 Saturday 30th September 2000 Of course, there was a fiesta last night and the Pamplonians were celebrating all night so again it was a fairly sleepless night. Olivia and Daniel have not stayed at the… Read more...
The refuge at "Estella" looking away from the town center Puente Le Reina to Estella - The refuge at "Estella" looking away from the town center Route segment: 6 Sunday 1st October 2000 I have very little to say about the walk to Estella is it was uneventful. Although this is one of the most stunning segments of the Camino Frances, I will let the pictures… Read more...
The fountain of the moors estella to los arcos Estella to Los Arcos - The fountain of the moors Route segment: 7 Monday 2nd October 2000 There is a point on the path just outside Estella where it divides into two. The left most path apparently is the longer and easier path. The right most path goes through more hilly terrain but is quicker.… Read more...
Los Arcos to Logroño Dirt Road Los Arcos to Logroño - The long shadows on the path after "Los Arcos" Route segment: 8 Tuesday 3rd October 2000 Today I walk the Camino again with Caroline. She is faster today and is already ahead of me on the path. The path here is very straight and the sun is very low so our… Read more...
The view looking south from one of the windows at the refuge in Navarrette Logroño to Navarette - The view looking south from one of the windows at the refuge in "Navarrette" Route segment: 9 Wednesday 4th October 2000 The meal I had last night did not agree with me, it might have been sunstroke as yesterday was too hot a day for me. I have lost the… Read more...
navarette to grañón Navarette to Grañón - The dining area at "Grañón" with Thierry stuffing his face as usual Route segment: 10 Thursday 5th October 2000 Having stayed the night at "Navarette" and lost touch with Carlos etc, I want to catch up and meet them again. They have probably stayed at "Nájera" and will be walking to… Read more...
The outside of the refuge in "Belorado" - grañón to belorado Grañón to Belorado - The outside of the refuge in "Belorado" Route segment: 11 Friday 6th October 2000 We are given a good breakfast by the people staying at the church. They have been very hospitable and I think again that it is probably the best refuge I have stayed at so far. It was… Read more...
san juan de ortega monastery on the camino de santiago Belorado to San Juan De Ortega - San Juan de Ortega Monastery: Image courtesy of Joan Grífols Route segment: 12 Saturday 7th October 2000 I start off today with Carlos, Olga, Geordie and Lisa. Olga has problems with her knee. Initially the walk takes us past many fields that have been burned and the stink is horrendous.… Read more...
san juan de ortega to burgos San Juan De Ortega to Burgos - The refuge at "Burgos" Route segment: 13 Sunday 8th October 2000 My leg and feet have kept me awake all night plus a minor fever. I decide that some days rest is required and order a taxi to take me to the next stop, which is "Burgos". It is a… Read more...
burgos to hornillos del camino Burgos to Hornillos Del Camino - The mother horse, tied up with another kind of prison in the background Route segment: 14 Tuesday 10th October 2000 Today they are all still there in the refuge and agree to go find a shop and some coffee. We don't get away until nearly 11 o'clock and I walk… Read more...
hornillos del camino to castrojeriz Hornillos Del Camino to Castrojeriz - The refuge at "Castrojeriz" Route segment: 15 Wednesday 11th October 2000 It is raining this morning. This is going to be one of the worst days on the whole Camino de Santiago for me. Normally I detest the combination of cold wind and rain so I don't enjoy being out… Read more...
Castrojeriz to Frómista Medieval Bridge Castrojeriz to Frómista - The bridge over the river "Rio Pisuerga" Route segment: 16 Thursday 12th October 2000 Thank goodness it is not raining today. It often rains in Galicia when I'm walking the Camino Frances. I start off with Thierry but he wants to walk fast and soon leaves me behind. The sun… Read more...
frómista to cacabelos The church and refuge at "Cacabelos" Frómista to Cacabelos - The church and refuge at "Cacabelos" Route segment: 17 Saturday 21st October 2000 Read more...
Cacabelos to Villafranca Del Bierzo Cafe Cacabelos to Villafranca Del Bierzo - The older refuge at "Villafranca Del Bierzo" Route segment: 18 Sunday 22nd October 2000 I wait for some time in Cacabelos and decide that maybe I have missed Thierry and book into the refuge here. It is a strange one built on the church grounds and it is divided up… Read more...
Villafranca Del Bierzo to Ruitelán Store Villafranca Del Bierzo to Ruitelán - "Spar" gets everywhere ! Route segment: 19 Monday 23rd October 2000 An example of the new road bridges Read more...
Ruitelán to Hospital Da Condesa Mountain Road Ruitelán to Hospital Da Condesa - The view from the new roadway after a long climb looking south Route segment: 20 Tuesday 24th October 2000 The view from "O Cebriero" looking north The old refuge at "O Cebriero" The view from "O Cebriero" looking south A monument just before reaching "Hospital Da Condesa" The sleeping area… Read more...
Hospital Da Condesa to Calvor Restaurant Hospital Da Condesa to Calvor - This bar was at the top of the nasty hill, just at the right spot ! Route segment: 21 Wednesday 25th October 2000 The great view on the way to "Triacastella" The very strange tree on the outskirts of "Triacastella" I didn't like the look of the refuge at "Triacastela".… Read more...
Calvor to Barbadelo Hostel Calvor to Barbadelo - The refuge at "Sarria" Route segment: 22 Thursday 26th October 2000 Strange mural on the church at "Sarria" The refuge at "Barbadelo" Read more...
Barbadelo to Gonzar Outhouse Barbadelo to Gonzar - These strange structures "horreos" were to be found everywhere in Galicia Route segment: 23 Friday 27th October 2000 Only 100Km to go !! The refuge at "Portomarín" The river and sunken village at "Portomarín"   Read more...
The bridge over the river at "Melide" Gonzar to Palas De Rei - The bridge over the river at "Melide" Route segment: 24 Saturday 28th October 2000   Read more...
Palas De Rei to Ribadiso De Baixo Stream Crossing Palas De Rei to Ribadiso De Baixo - The river crossing on the way to "Ribadiso De Baixo" Route segment: 25 Sunday 29th October 2000 The refuge at "Ribadiso De Baixo" Read more...
Arzua to Finisterre Lighthouse Arzua to Finisterre - The lighthouse at "Finisterre" Route segment: 26 Wednesday 1st November 2000 I have hired a nice car and redone the whole Camino by car taking more photographs on the way. It takes three days to do and at the end I decide to go to "Finisterre". The journey would normally… Read more...
Arzua to Monte De Gozo Hostel Arzua to Monte De Gozo - The refuge at "Arzua" Route segment: 27 Thursday 2nd November 2000 The refuge at "Monte De Gozo" Read more...
Monte De Gozo to Santiago De Compostela Colorful Statues Monte De Gozo to Santiago De Compostela - The Colourful Locals Route segment: 28 Friday 3rd November 2000 The letter boxes in the main post office in "Santiago" And that's the end of my first and second Camino. In the words of Forest Gump, "That's all I have to say about that..." But I did go back again… Read more...

Animated Route Map of Camino Frances