Camino de Santiago de Compostela – Update (Part VI)

This was a great week despite the fact I was sick with a virus for a couple of days.  An estranged friendship was rekindled; I received a Valentine gift from my grandchildren and I was able to fit in four good training/conditioning walks.

At one point this week I became very apprehensive about the Camino.  Not walking the “Way” but actually making my way to St. Jean Pied de Port by myself.  Which airport do I fly into and which airport do I fly back home from?  I fretted a bit and then decided to send Rick Steves (the travel guy) an email asking the question since I had viewed a travel show of his on the Camino.  His response was –

“Most likely the places you would fly into would be Barcelona, Paris, San Sebastian, or Biarritz. The bigger cities will probably be cheaper and the regional airports more expensive. Keep in mind that train prices will vary. From Paris and Barcelona you will probably want to take a night train.
Barcelona – St. Jean = 13-18 hours about $100 one way
San Sebastian – St. Jean = 3-6 hours
Paris – St. Jean = 9-14 hours about $170 one way
Biarritz – St. Jean = 2-3 hours
Check online for flights into these cities. Paris may actually be a better place to fly into. For folks taking our San Sebastian tour, we sometimes tell them that Paris is the better option.”

I priced flights into all the cities he suggested.  Round trip fares all seemed to be decent if from the same airport.  But to fly into, let’s say Paris and return from Barcelona was cost prohibitive.  So my guess is I’ll probably try to make the arriving and departing airport convenient to SJPdP and Santiago de Compostela (SdC).   Now my dilemma is how do I get from the airport to SJPdP and from SdC to the airport?  Oh, well, like Scarlett O’Hara I’ll worry about that another day!

The conditioning walks this week took me to places I have not yet explored like this patch of prickly pear cacti. 

7 responses to “Camino de Santiago de Compostela – Update (Part VI)

  1. You need to fire your travel agent and hire me!

    Fly return trip into London – Stanstead if you can get direct to there, or fly into Heathrow and then take the shuttle bus to Stanstead. Then fly on Ryanair (book directly from their website to save money) to Biarritz. Then take the shuttle bus from Biarritz to Bayonne where you will catch the train to St Jean. On the way back, you can fly directly from Santiago with Ryanair to Stanstead and then either fly home from there, or take the shuttle back to Heathrow – depending on how you got to Europe. The Ryanair flights are about $50-$75 one way. Experiment with different days because there can be real savings depending on which day you take.

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    • Wow, thanks for the tip. Hey, when will you be walking the Camino? I’m thinking September – do you already have or would you like a travelling companion?

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      • I am going the first week of September. I do not have my exact date planned yet and plan on buying my tickets in April unless I see a really good deal before then. I have from September 1st to Oct 14th off of work.
        You are very welcome to start out with me but we may find that 1) we walk at a different pace and 2) you cannot stand my snoring, lol.

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  2. Sorry I gave you my funk!!!

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  3. P.S. So far, I am going alone 😦

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  4. I cannot wait to hear how this trip goes for you, I am excited for YOU since I would never, could never do it. You’re an inspiration and I’m so glad you got the bug to do it and went with your gut feelings. I know you’ll do great. I told a friend about it and said he should interview you and write about it in his town paper, but unfortunately they only want ‘local’ stuff …..
    Thanks so much for the nice call the other night and we will surely be in touch before the big excursion !
    BTW… what a beautiful picture of the unseen area you came across, it is beautiful country in your area……

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