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Kate, UK, French Way from St Jean to Burgos

This was a totally new experience for me as I am more used to holidays on the beach! My walks are usually a 2/3 hour walk once a week, and normally I’m in jeans, so getting wick away tops and zipped trousers not to mention poles was a bit of a novelty! I did however listen to some very good advice when I started on the Route de Napoleon, about taking the first few days at a slower pace than normal and therefore got home with only a small blister to show for nearly a 288km walk.
I compared 3 travel companies who deal in Camino de Santiago holidays and decided to go with Camino Ways. I found them very informed, friendly and flexible. I was not disappointed. I did stages 1 to 3 from St Jean Pied de Port to Burgos. There is a nice pilgrim’s menu at restaurant Cidrerie at St Jean with the lovely local tart to finish with and a warm welcome if you are starting there. Camino ways added an extra day in St Jean, Pamplona and Logrono for me. Most of the hotels were good and a few were memorable because of the food and charm of the places as well as the friendly management. Hosteria de Zubiri stood out for good food & the friendliness of Javier & Fermina who looked after our every need. Also Hostal Pedro Primero, a family run hostel with simple fresh food. Remember to ask if you want to leave early in the morning, most places will try to accommodate you if given notice. For me the daily walks were extraordinary for the scenery, the peace and the beautiful villages along the way. The hotels were easy to find and near the main attractions and on arrival my luggage would be waiting which was like seeing an old friend and it would confirm that I was in the right place! I met a few other pilgrims staying in the same hotels as me and so we sometimes had supper together in a group which was great fun, and sometimes we’d meet up in small villages along the way when we stopped for a coffee or lunch.
I am looking forward to doing stages 4, 5 & 6 from Burgos to Ponferrada next year. I will be using Camino Ways again because everything went so well and I know I will be in safe hands. Thanks to Alexandra & all the team for a wonderful experience and I look forward to some more Caminos!

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