Doing the Camino de Santiago in November

November is probably not one of the most popular seasons to do the Camino de Santiago, however, it can be a wise choice for those pilgrims looking to escape the crowds that occur in the high season months and live a unique experience that allows you to connect deeply with the Camino and with yourself.
In this post we tell you why choosing November to do the Camino is a good option.

Why November is a good month to do the Camino de Santiago?

Halfway between autumn and winter, November is a month of changes. While undertaking the Camino in this month may seem challenging due to its shorter days and colder temperatures, the opportunity to see its landscapes is a real reward. The winter forests and the snow falling on the branches of the trees create a magical and special atmosphere, where you can feel the peace and tranquillity as you walk this route.

November is the perfect time to live this experience. Away from the crowds of the summer months and the high temperatures, doing the Camino in November is a good idea, so if you have a few days off, it is worth reserving them to start this adventure.

Paisaje en noviembre en el Camino de Santiago

Advantages of doing the Camino in November

If you are thinking of doing the Camino de Santiago in November, you can enjoy the following advantages:

Fewer pilgrims

This is the most notable feature of doing the Camino de Santiago in November. As winter arrives, the number of pilgrims begins to decrease, so that the Camino becomes quieter. November is a perfect month if you are looking for a more solitary and personal experience.

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    Pleasant walking temperatures

    In November, the weather conditions are ideal for walking. Temperatures are cool, ranging between 5 and 15ºC. This avoids the extreme heat of the summer months. On some days there may be light, intermittent showers. However, they will not be an inconvenience for walking.

    In certain mountain areas such as O Cebreiro or the climb to Foncebadón, extreme weather conditions are possible. Bear this in mind when choosing your route.

    A charming landscape

    In spring and summer, the Camino is filled with landscapes of lush forests and fields in bloom. However, the landscape is different in autumn. In November, the trees are dressed in shades of ochre and gold, transforming the landscapes into a spectacle worth seeing.

    Moreover, in this month, pilgrims who like snow can see the mountain peaks covered with this white mantle in certain mountain areas.

    Disadvantages of doing the Camino de Santiago in November

    Although walking the Camino de Santiago in November can be an enriching experience, it also presents several challenges that you should be aware of.

    Fewer daylight hours for walking

    In November, the days begin to shorten, that is, there will be fewer daylight hours. Our recommendation is that you start the Camino early to take advantage of the daylight hours and be able to do activities in your free time.

    You will need to bring warm clothes

    In this month, temperatures are lower, so you will need to carry warm clothes in your backpack. These types of clothes are thicker than those used in summer to protect you from the cold, and therefore, they take up more space and weigh more. For this reason, we recommend that you carry a backpack of no less than 50 L so that you can carry your belongings without any problem.
    If you want to live this experience without worries and enjoy it to the full, remember that we offer a luggage transfer service between stages.

    Adverse weather conditions

    It is one of the main drawbacks of the Camino at this time of the year. While other months such as September and October have milder temperatures, in November temperatures start to drop. Frosts at night and in the early hours of the morning are frequent, and the first snowfalls can be seen in inland and mountain areas.
    In addition, there is a higher probability of precipitation, especially in regions such as Galicia, Asturias and Cantabria.

    Therefore, our recommendation is that you go very well equipped, with thermal and waterproof clothing to combat these challenging weather conditions. In addition, walking the Camino de Santiago in November will require a greater physical preparation, as it is different to walk on tracks and paths covered with mud or snow.

    Recommended routes in November

    The Portuguese Way, the English Way and the French Way are a good option to do in November. These routes are ideal for those pilgrims seeking the tranquility of walking through nature and rural landscapes.

    Portuguese Way

    The Portuguese Way is the second most popular route after the French Way. It starts in Lisbon but many choose to start in Porto, the most important city in Portugal, which is 250 km from Santiago de Compostela. The approximate walking time would be 12 days.

    English Way

    If you are looking to enjoy the tranquillity of the sea and the Galician gastronomy, the English Way is the perfect choice. It has two alternatives: from Ferrol and from A Coruña, with 118 and 73 km respectively, and is ideal if you have little time to walk, as it can be done in between 3 and 5 days.

    French Way

    It is the most popular route among pilgrims, but at this time of year, there will be fewer pilgrims, which will allow you to live a quieter experience. In addition, finding services along the Camino will not be a problem, as it has a large number of infrastructures available throughout the year.

    What to carry in your backpack on the Camino de Santiago in November?

    So that you can walk comfortably, we recommend carrying a backpack of 30 or 40 L capacity and that its total weight does not exceed 10% of your own. A common mistake is to overload the backpack and most injuries such as tendinitis, are caused by the weight of the luggage.
    If you don’t want to do without anything in your backpack, you can hire a luggage transfer service from stage to stage throughout your Camino.

    Peregrino en el Camino de Santiago en noviembre

    Celebrations and festivities in November in Galicia

    In November you will find numerous activities to enjoy and relax after a long walk. If you plan to do the Camino this month, here are some of the most popular celebrations in Galicia.

    Magosto

    In November, every Galician landscape smells of roasted chestnuts. This celebration is part of Galician culture and celebrates the chestnut harvest. In hundreds of villages and towns, locals gather to roast chestnuts and accompany them with wine or must from the recent harvest.

    Camino de Santiago en noviembre Magosto

    Other local festivities

    November is also a month of celebrations and festivities in various towns and cities in Galicia. One of the most popular is the Feira dos Santos in Lugo, which you can attend if you are on the Primitive Way. This festival features traditional markets with typical products from the Galician countryside and was declared a Fair of Galician Tourist Interest in 2011.

    In short, whether you are planning your own winter pilgrimage or have simply enjoyed exploring this journey through this post, remember that the Camino de Santiago always awaits you. Whether in November or at any time of the year, this trail offers a journey of self-discovery, beauty and connection that will linger with you long after you arrive in Santiago de Compostela.

    ¡Buen Camino!

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