Accommodation along the Camino de Santiago

Accommodation Camino Santiago

 The variety of accommodation along the Camino de Santiago depends on the route you choose. Would you like to know more about it?

I bet you are already imagining it… The thing is that among the routes to Santiago, you can either find quiet or crowded ones.

Finding accommodation along the Camino de Santiago

At first, we might believe that there will be less options to choose from outside the most renowned routes. However, the truth is that there are sections shared with other Caminos at these same routes, so it will be easier than we can imagine.

We are not going to fool ourselves, the Primitive Way is probably one of the most complicated routes to find accommodation, especially if you are looking for a place right on the Camino. But it’s not imposible.

We found great diversity of accommodation along the French and Portuguese Camino, both small family-run companies and bigger ones, but… where do I stay if I want to do the Primitive, the English or the Northern Way?

If you feel lazy to look for accommodation on your own but you really want to launch yourself into this special adventure, why not counting on the assistance of a specialized agency?

If you are reading this, you probably would like to be told about the most recommended accommodations to stay on the Camino, depending on your budget and the facilities you need, the distance from the Camino, and many other doubts that may arise.

We will try to solve them and if you still have doubts after reading this guide, do not forget that you can leave your comment or send us an email, so our team of local experts will reply in a flash!!

What accommodation options do I have on the Camino de Santiago? Which ones do we recommend?

We will not tell you what to choose. You already know this is up to you and depends on your preferences, but we will try to help you in order to make a fundamental decision for your well-being during the Camino.

The first step should be thinking about your comfort needs. Are you going to do the Camino and want to experience a mountain-style adventure? You probably thought about spending the night under the stars on a sleeping bag, beneath the shelter of a large tree.

Well, that’s not the most desirable thing to do, even during the summer.

Why?

The temperatures tend to drop during the Galician nights. It’s not that you will be cold, but surely you won’t get up to 100% in order to start walking.

On the other hand, insects like mosquitoes may join your night party, leaving their vampire marks over the most exposed areas of your skin.

A pilgrim I have recently met, told me that he had slept in the open air and the result was getting up with a swollen knee. We don’t know which insect caused it, but the high temperatures and the bite turned out to be a fatal combination. The knee became more and more inflamed, so walking came to be harder and harder.

We cannot advise you on that! Walking the Camino with mosquitoe bites or other bugs can be quite uncomfortable.

So let’s better find a more suitable accommodation. It is not 100% sure that you will be free of bites if you stay in an enclosed place, but the chances will be reduced to more than 50%. Let’s say you will be less of an accessible victim.

Now the question is: do I prefer to share dreams and bath with others, or do I wish to sleep in my own private bedroom? What accommodation options could I find on the Camino de Santiago?

Hostel, Pension, Hotel, Country Cottage?

 

Hostel (albergue)

Hostels are a good option if you want to meet other people who are also doing the Camino. You can find them throughout all the stages along the routes. In fact, in those places where there is no private accommodation, there is always a public hostel and some private ones.

As you probably know, public hostels give priority to those who are doing the Camino as a pilgrim, with the official credential. In addition, they do not allow reservations, so that is why you could run out of sleeping options.

Accommodation along the CaminoPrivate hostels do admit reservations and some of them have some private rooms with ensuite bathroom. So they are a good option if you want to enjoy the most social aspect of the Camino.

You will find below a list of the top accommodation along the Camino de Santiago that you could find on the route that you decide to follow, including some hostel.

 

Pension

There are “hostales” and “pensiones” in our region, but actually hostales are the same than “pensiones”. In fact, the regulations in Galicia specify that hostales are 2 and 3 star “pensiones” with certain characteristics similar to those of a hotel. In other words, a hostal (2-3*pension) is like a hotel, but from a lower category.

This does not mean that they have to be worse, only that the law does not require them to have as many services as a hotel. Of course, quality does not always accompany the stars, but in the price we pay it is usually noticed a little more.

On the French Camino from Sarria, there are 117 registered pensions, without taking into account of the 124 that currently exist in Santiago.

So there is plenty of accommodation to choose from. If you want to know which are among the top according to our ranking, pay attention to our infographic.

Some pensions have a restaurant, which can great if it matches with a stage with lack of gastronomic offer. We know that sometimes fatigue will cause you a lot of laziness when walking the area to find the place to recharge your batteries. Other times the offer is so scarce that you don’t have much to choose from, or the offer is enough but they don’t really meet our expectations. So it never hurts when they offer us the complete pack in the same establishment.

Other pensions, that do not have this service, have agreements with restaurants nearby. The truth is that it’s very convenient for the traveller who arrives exhausted after a hard walk.
Hostels are a good option to sleep well, without having to give up on privacy. Some look restrained and others more modernized, but always with a decent service for a good rest.

Hotels

You probably know everything you need about hotels already. Some are so magnificent, others so chaotic, but all of them usually have the essential services for resting, cleaning and maintenance of our stomachs (at least in the morning).

Some hotels do not have a dining room or cafeteria, which is a pain in the neck when thinking about breakfast. ¡Uh! Breakfast! That meal we need in order to be able to walk.

Let’s be honest, everyone likes to have a good breakfast when they go to a hotel, but… our wishes are not always fulfilled. How many of us criticize the lack of variety in a breakfast? Or its high price for the small quantity or supply of food? Not to mention the types of breakfast… continental, buffet, brunch, gluten free, lactose free, vegetarian…

Luckily, some accommodations serve breakfasts with an interesting variety, from salty (sausages, cheeses, snacks), to the classic sweet (cereals, breads, jams …) option, but the truth is that many continue to fail at this point.

Industrial pastries should be strictly prohibited. Why? Well, I am not going to write a post about nutrition, but in fact the sugars they contain are not the most interesting calories to start walking.

Other “healthier” hotels offer local products. Do you think it is worth paying a little more for a healthier product? And if they also tell you that they have made it in the bakery of the town, which has a woodstove and continues to cook the bread as in the past. Wow!!!

That deserves an outstanding, because….

Investing in a quality product is a synonym of a service that genuinely cares for the customer.

And that’s what it takes to make it easier and more endearing when you do the Camino, isn’t it? They only need to take care of you.

Country Cottages

Rural tourism is in vogue. Who does not like to enjoy a cottage, next to a river or a lake, surrounded by a forest… in addition it may have also a pool, or a chimney!  Yes, the rural is cool. It makes us reconnect with mother nature. And, since the Caminos pass through so many rural areas… country cottages could be a perfect option for our rest.

Country Cottages are an amazing option along the Camino

These accommodations are divided into different types depending on their characteristics, according to Galician regulations. Village houses, farmhouses, rural tourism villages, manor houses, mansions and others, will take us to another century.

They usually are traditional houses from the area, built many years ago, renovated a few years ago, but with a nostalgic feeling that floods us with cosiness.

Not all of them are incredible, because some have simply been reformed without maintaining the essence. We are in other century and nowadays we want certain comforts that our ancestors could not enjoy.

But the common thing is that rural tourism makes us feel very comfortable. Natural materials, such as oak and chestnut wood, depending on the area, slate on the rooftops, with its fireplace, known as “lareira”, original antique furniture, its squeaky floors and that particular smell of… I don’t know, country cottage?

Some of them are dreamlike and allow us to feel that our journey through the Camino is well worth it.

Are country cottages the best option? It depends on what we look for. In general, we can divide country cottages in two types:

  • Full rental country cottages. Some are only rented for a minimum of days, and have their kitchen so you stew it, you eat it. Hopefully, they will change your towels and sheets every 2 or 3 days. They are not bad at all, but it will be more like renting a whole apartment with family or friends and setting up the party on your own.
  • Full rental or private rooms rental in a country cottage. Some of them are similar to a hotel. That means you can book a room and breakfast. Not all of them take full care of this aspect, but some do very well and invest on high quality products. Also, if you are doing the Camino and the house is far from the areas of bars and restaurants, it is appreciated when they offer lunch or dinner service.

Accommodation along the Camino de Santiago

Hotels along the Camino de Santiago

There are more than 900 hotels in Galicia. Logically, not all of them are located right there in the Camino, but the number helps us to get an idea of ​​the current offer.

On the Portuguese Way from Tui, there are more than 122 hotels

Obviously we are giving an approximate figure, since we talk about the hotels that we can find in the stops of those stages of the Camino. However, sometimes we have no choice but to choose to divert a bit from the route, either due to lack of availability or accommodation in the area.

In general, on the Camino the most common hotels have 1 and 2 stars.

In many stages of the Camino, we cannot choose the stars, but we should not worry either. Today, many of them have an excellent quality / price ratio.

What is the offer of hotels along the Camino?

 

Along the Portuguese Coastal Camino, we can find more hotels in comparison to the rest. This is conditioned mostly because the coastal area of ​​the Rías Baixas is one of the most demanded during the summer time.

Pensions along the Camino de Santiago

There are more pensions than hotels in Galicia. In fact, we found 1231 pensions, almost nothing!

50% of the pensions are registered as a 1-star pension. The pensions from this category are usually basic accommodations, where you can sleep, but it is not so common to find a bar service inside. However, they are a good option if you are simply thinking about a place to rest in the privacy of your own room.

In some cases, there are pensions that have shared rooms, although this is usually more characteristic among the hostels. In others, there are private rooms with shared bathrooms. So, if we want total privacy, it is better to double check before hiring.

What is the offer of pensions along the Camino?