5 Essential Tips For Walking The Camino in Autumn

Walking The Camino in Autumn

5 Essential Tips For Walking The Camino in Autumn

Autumn is fast becoming one of the most popular times of year to walk the Camino de Santiago. In addition to its beauty, more and more pilgrims hope to escape the Summer heat. The Summer temperatures are getting too hot (for example, the forest fires and heatwaves this year), making walking or cycling quite unbearable.

Autumn temperatures are much more pleasant, with cool breezes and even the odd rain shower. But it’s still warm enough that you aren’t shivering with the cold as you walk. Walking in each season comes with specific necessities regarding packing, terrain, ability and organisation. With this in mind, we’ve compiled 5 essential tips for walking the Camino during autumn.

Women walking the Camino

Tip 1: Choose your Route wisely

September and October are very busy on the Camino Frances, particularly the last 100km from Sarria to Santiago. It can be difficult to find accommodation and a deterrent for those hoping to have a peaceful, quieter Camino.

Many great routes are perfect for an autumn adventure, particularly the Portuguese routes, the Via Francigena in Tuscany, the last 100km of the Via de la Plata, and the Camino Primitivo. We’ve compiled a list of our favourite Autumn routes and the best time to walk them, and we hope you find some inspiration from the article.

It is also important to note that some services along the various Camino routes close in October, ahead of the low season in Winter, so choosing your route wisely is important to avoid any stress or disappointment.

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Tip 2: Plan for the weather

I’d love to tell you that your autumn Camino will be filled with blue skies and crunchy yellow leaves. Unfortunately, as we all know, the Camino weather is too unpredictable to make those promises.

The best thing to do is to plan for all eventualities. Bring a rain jacket, extra socks, jumpers, lighter layers, and short sleeves. For the rain jacket, ensure it has a hood; ideally, try to get a foldable one to attach to the outside of your backpack while walking. This will give you easy access if a shower of rain suddenly appears.

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Tip 3: Be organised with your packing

Packing is a little bit more complicated in the Autumn than in the Summer, as it’s important to have warm and cold clothing. Warm clothing is essential for the early morning and late afternoon/evening.

Make sure your hiking boots are waterproof. Nothing is worse than walking around all day with wet feet. Also, pack 1-2 spare pairs of socks in your bag, just in case!

But don’t forget your swimsuit. While there’s the threat of rain and cooler temperatures, it’s still warm enough to go to the beach on the Camino, definitely in September and even into October. While the water may not be as warm as it is during the hot summer months, it will still be refreshing, especially after a full day of walking.

To help you get organised, our Camino de Santiago packing list will give you a place to start, and you can make additions and adjustments based on your personal needs and the season. We also have a packing ebook you can download for more information.

Visitas Guiadas

Tip 4: Choose your travel dates based on your social preferences

The Camino is gradually getting quieter as we approach the last few months of the year. The busiest and most popular route is still the Camino Francés. If you’re hoping to meet new people and have more of a social experience on the Camino, be sure to go earlier in Autumn, like in September and the beginning of October.

In September and October, the Camino is still busy, and many restaurants and cafes are still open and active. Mid-October is a better option if you’d prefer a quieter Camino and would rather not run into too many people. No matter which route you are hoping to walk, the Camino does get significantly quieter in late October, with many hotels, restaurants, and other hospitality services closing up their operations for the low season over winter.

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Tip 5: Take the daylight into account when planning your walking hours

The days are shorter in Autumn, so you must be more aware of the daylight hours and manage your walking time. The sun will rise later and set earlier, so it’s important to be as organised as possible.

It’s also worth noting that some services begin to close in November ahead of the winter months, so consider this when planning out your days.

We hope you enjoyed this article about walking the Camino in Autumn. If you want help planning your Camino or have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us. Check out our article on Great Routes For The End of Summer for ideas on the most suitable route for you.

If you already know when you want to travel and what route you want to walk, you can customise your trip using our Camino Planner.

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