Best Albergue In St Jean Pied De Port – St Jean Pied de Port (map) or “Saint John at the foot of the pass” is located in the Pyrénées department in southwestern France at the foot of the Pyrenees. The city is also the ancient capital of the traditional Basque province of Lower Navarre. This is the traditional starting point of the Camino Francés. If you have to start the Camino from here, it is 8 km from the Spanish border, but you can double this 8 km if you go up. The city consists of a long main road that crosses the Nive River as it leaves the city.
You can get to St. Jean from the nearby Biarritz Airport. Ryanair offers regular flights from Ireland. For those who live outside of Europe, you can fly to Barcelona, Paris or Madrid.
Best Albergue In St Jean Pied De Port
Upon arrival (Gronze), there are many accommodation options in St. Jean Pied de Port. If you want to go in during high season, we recommend that you book in advance, as a bed cannot be guaranteed upon arrival. Gite Beilari is well known and respected. Many of the pilgrims he meets here accompany him on most of his journey.
Camino Frances Photos
The historic center of St Jean Pied de Port is the long cobbled street, Rue de la Citadelle. It stretches down from the 15th century Porte St-Jacques to the Porte d’Espagne. The road crosses the Nive River on an old stone bridge, and there are many photos of these views on the Internet. Above the town is a fort that was once of great importance in St Jean Pied de Port. St Jean Pied de Port is very well prepared for pilgrims, with restaurants serving pilgrim menus and shops selling last minute items on the first day of the journey. Tip: visit your local Lidl and buy some snacks for the next day’s long walk. The Pilgrimage Office will give you a power of attorney or stamp your existing one, for which you must stay in Albergues en route. They also provide maps and helpful tips. Listen to all the advice from the volunteers, especially if you have to cross the Napoleon Pass or walk through Val Carlos. Time plays an important role in this decision.
Your next stop after leaving St Jean is Auburge Orissa, after a gradual ascent of 8 kilometers with the new pilgrims. But don’t forget to enjoy the view. There are many things you should ask yourself before you start the Path, and I hope I can answer some of them here – if I missed something or need more information, feel free to ask in the comments and I’ll reply with the update post!
Most pilgrims sleep in hostels – albergues that cost 5-15E, depending on whether they are municipal, private or with breakfast.
In the albergue you almost always sleep in bunk beds (sometimes they give you your bed number and sometimes you can choose the bed) and there are 4-50 people in a room (around 200 a room during the albergue in Roncenvalles).
The Best Albergues On The Camino
You can also get a cello for your ID card (pilgrim’s passport) in Albergues, but you can also get it in bars, hotels, shops, churches and many other places!
Hotels are available on the Camino and the only time I stayed in one was around €40 for a double room.
You can’t book into municipal albergues, but most private albergues allow you to – just make sure you know how much you want to walk each day before you do. No need to book in advance when I walked in.
The information on this seems a little confusing, but it seems that if you go from Sarria (which is just over 100km from Santiago to Compostela) you should get two cellos a day. However, new credentials issued by the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela in 2015 require two, so the rules have changed.
Gite De La Porte Saint Jacques: A Hostel For Pilgrims, Saint Jean Pied De Port
If you are a member of the Order of St. James in England, they issue passes and the American Pilgrims group on the Camino issues them by donation, or you could try the Peterborough Pilgrims’ Association. Or the local fraternity will probably let them go.
Of course, you can also get orders from many places along the chimney – St Jean Pied du Port is definitely there, and some albergues along the way and some churches too.
Or check out this Camino Adventures blog post for a list of non-English speaking groups with Camino credentials and locations:
Meals are usually three-course pilgrim menus. The starter is usually soup, pasta or salad. Main course: pasta, meat or fish. The pudding: yogurt, fruit, flan, Santiago cake. These cost 9-12e.
Albergue De Peregrinos De Saint Jean Pied De Port
We cooked ourselves and usually had pasta with tuna tomato sauce or cream cheese and sometimes added vegetables like mushrooms or maybe grated cheese. We made rice and tortillas a few times and almost always had a bag of salad. anywhere we got local custard pies, maybe yogurt or fruit.
During the day, we went to a cafe for a snack – in Spain, more cafes offer alcohol than pubs or bars at home. Here we ate hot chocolate, coffee or cola and shared a slice of tortilla or cake for 2-4E.
Most villages seem to have something going on these days, and more and more people are opening a small shop just for pilgrims – the selection isn’t huge, but there always seems to be bread and pasta, and sometimes they cut a small portion of meat or cheese. They are more expensive than supermarkets, but not by much.
Note that most shops close between 2-5 or 7 for siesta time. In the bars, meals are only served at 19:00 or 19:30: you will quickly get used to the “strange” Spanish opening hours! Always bring a cake or something to cover if you arrive when the shops are closed (but also when the bars are usually open).
Saint Jean Pied De Port
I’m not on a gluten-free diet, but my mom is, so I notice these things a bit: most major supermarkets (supermecards rather than mecards) had a gluten-free selection, and pasta was available (and I think the bread is good too). They were always laughing, and so were some of the smaller shops. The food is labeled “gluten free” as gluten free – I remember seeing this label a lot.
As for the pilgrim menus, most had at least one plate of chips (I know they’re not always gluten-free, but I think they usually are). Tortillas are great gluten-free, and many places also made omelets (I know, back in the day when you only had a choice of fries or an omelet!).
Update: my mom has now walked the last 130 km with us and we had no problem with her eating or cooking for her; More people in Spain know what we’re talking about than in the UK. We printed out and used Celiac Travel’s restaurant card (http://www.celiactravel.com/cards/spanish/) and simply showed it to people – it’s best to do it so everyone can understand. I’m trying to get a mom to post about her experiences with celiac disease and when I do, I’ll link to the post here.
The gluten free selection at the supermarket in Santiago – most places don’t have that much, but most supermarkets seemed to have pasta, crackers and rice or corn cakes.
Albergues On The Camino De Santiago
We usually walk 20-25 km per day, which allows for a good steady pace with a stop at a cafe for a snack. We once walked 40 km in one day, which was not fun! Some people walk 10 km a day, others 50 km: it’s up to you, walk according to what makes you feel good and happy!
On the Camino Frances you usually find them no more than 10 km apart, except near Carrion de los Condes where there is nothing for 17 km! The track at the end of the episode should work really well!
There are fewer accommodations on the way to Portugal, so the length of the days is more determined by this, but the days can still be arranged.
The Camino is at its busiest in the summer due to the many Spanish walks, so even St. James’s Day can be crowded as people want to get to Santiago on that day. I always walked from April to May or August to September and never had a problem finding a bed. Sometimes it was too cold or too hot