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Doing the Camino de Santiago in October

Why do the Camino de Santiago in October?

Although for some people October is time to take the warm clothes out of the wardrobe, to make sofa and movie plans or to have a hot drink. For others, October is the perfect time to do the Camino de Santiago. An ideal time to enjoy the tranquillity and peace that fills our body and mind when we connect with nature.

The best times to do the Camino de Santiago are spring and autumn. However, all will depend on your preferences and the experience you want to live. Although most pilgrims make this pilgrimage during the summer months, doing the Camino de Santiago in October can be a perfect experience for you.

Los paisajes durante el otoño en el Camino

October is a month where the reddish and golden colours of autumn can already be seen in the Galician forests. You will discover some of the most amazing landscapes of the Camino. You will walk among colourful trees and paths covered by leaves. It is a month close to the coldest season, but in which the temperatures are still pleasant for walking.

Advantages of doing the Camino in October

The weather is perfect for walking

In October, the weather conditions are ideal to do the Camino. The weather is cooler and more pleasant than in the summer months. The average temperature in Galicia and the inland areas of northern Spain is around 15ºC. And although some days the rains may appear, they will not be an impediment.

Lower influx of pilgrims

In October, there are fewer pilgrims in the Camino. This is appreciated by those who value walking in peace , admiring the changing  autumn landscape and enjoying the sounds of nature. Although the number of pilgrims you will find in the Camino will depend on the chosen route. It is certain that the most popular routes will not be as crowded as in the summer season.

Greater availability in accommodation

Finding availability in hotels and private accommodation in October is easy. They are not as crowded as in high season and it is also common to find better prices per night than in high season.

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    Inconvenients of doing the Camino in October

    In October starts the rain season

    Light and intermittent rainfall is common at this time of year, so be prepared to walk in the rain on some of the stages, but don’t worry! A pair of boots and a waterproof poncho will be enough to enjoy the experience.

    Comienzan las lluvias en los meses de octubre y noviembre

    Less availability of services on the Camino.

    In the low season, some accommodation and services may be closed or have reduced opening hours in October. This can make it more difficult to find a place to sleep and eat, especially on less crowded routes or more remote locations.

    The days are shorter

    The days begin to shorten and the sun sets earlier than in summer. It is important to take this into account when planning your route hours. The closer you get to the winter months, the less sunlight time you will have. Our recommendation is to begin the Camino early in the morning, to take advantage of the sunlight time and do some activity at the end of each stage.

    What route of the Camino to do in October?

    Which Camino de Santiago you choose will depend on your preferences and the amount of time you have available. However, some routes are more suitable for walking in October.

    Both the Camino Portugués Interior and the one in the Coast, are good options to do in October. Both routes have a natural beauty and a huge cultural heritage. The first one is perfect for those who enjoy walking through nature and rural landscapes . Whereas the second is for people who love coastal and inland landscapes.

    The starting point usually chosen by pilgrims is O Porto. The most important city in Portugal. Located 200 km from Santiago de Compostela. Doing the Camino from OPorto on foot takes between 8-10 days. The pilgrims who do not have time, use to shorten the itinerary and start the Camino in Tui or Baiona (depending on whether they choose the variant of the Portuguese Inland Way or the Portuguese Coastal Way).

    The Camino A Orixe is a path still unknown to most pilgrims. Nevertheless, it is perfect for those pilgrims looking for an experience of disconnection. It is a route that runs largely along the coast, surrounded by lovely beaches. Ideal for discovering small coastal villages of Galicia. To enjoy the tranquillity of the sea. And some of the delicious typical dishes of Galician gastronomy.

    Yes, October is also a good time to do the Camino Francés. Unlike in summer this route is less crowded in October. So finding services in October will not be a problem, since it has a lot of infrastructure open all year round. You will find more pilgrims than in the previous ones and you will have a more social experience. We recommend doing this route in October if it is the first time you do the Camino de Santiago.

    What to take on the Camino de Santiago in October?

    We recommend you carry a backpack of 30-40 litres capacity. To walk comfortably and without back pain, remember to adhere to the 10% rule. That is, that the total weight of your backpack does not exceed 10% of your own weight.

    And if you do not want to carry your backpack, but you need to take with you all the utensils to continue enjoying the comfort of everyday life, you can hire the services of luggage transfer between stages.  Throughout your Camino, a transporter will move your luggage from one accommodation to another while you walk.

    This is the most comfortable option. Increasingly chosen by many pilgrims. Since it avoids having to walk with weight on your back during long stages.

    Equipamiento especial necesaripo en octubre

    Make sure you bring appropriate clothing for autumn. A good pair of hiking boots and a waterproof poncho will be a must. In addition, these are some of the essentials that you should not forget in your backpack if you are going to do the Camino il in autumn:

    • 3 breathable technical T-shirts. Wear at least one short-sleeved and one long-sleeved, as the weather can be very changeable.
    • Two long trousers, better if they are waterproof. You can also take a modular one in case there are very hot days.
    • A fleece or sweatshirt in case the temperatures drop a lot, especially early in the morning and at night.
    • Comfortable walking shoes. Preferably waterproof trekking boots.
    • Comfortable clothes for sleeping.
    • A raincoat
    • Flip-flops or comfortable shoes to rest your feet after the walk.
    • 3 pairs of underwear.
    • A sun hat or visor
    • Bottle of water
    • Personal toiletries

    Celebrations and festivals in October in Galicia

    In October 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.

    La Vendimia

    Some of the El Camino routes pass through areas renowned for their wine production and strong winemaking tradition. If you walk some of these routes during the months of September and October (depending on weather conditions) you will be able to get to know and enjoy the grape harvest. This is when the grapes are harvested for the production of wine. At this time you can enjoy the lively agricultural activity in the fields and wineries. A perfect time to learn about the winemaking process, visit a winery and even taste the wines with designation of origin in the Ribeira Sacra or Rías Baixas.

    The Magosto

    The Magosto is the traditional autumn festival par excellence in Galicia. It celebrates the chestnut harvest. This food is typical throughout the community. Although it currently takes other formats, traditionally people gathered around a bonfire to roast delicious chestnuts and socialize. They are usually accompanied by red wine.

    Castañas del magosto en Octubre

    Samaín

    Samaín (Samhain), also known as Halloween in Anglo-Saxon countries, is celebrated on 31st October in Galicia. It is a celebration of Celtic origin that commemorates the new year (according to the Celtic calendar) and the transition to the dark ages.

    As in the popular Halloween, it is the day when the border between the earthly world and the afterlife disappears. Therefore, people dress up in costumes to scare away evil spirits. Nowadays, in many Galician cities you can enjoy parties, queimadas, costume parades and many other activities.

     

    Peregrinos en octubre

    Other local festivities

    In addition, in October there are also festivals in several Galician towns and villages along the Caminos. These are the most popular festivals and celebrations in Galicia during the month of October:

    • Camino Portugués: Festa dos Callos in Porriño.
    • Camino Ruta del Padre Sarmiento: Festa do marisco in O Grove.
    • Camino del Norte: Feast of the Virgin of the Rosary and Saint James the Apostle in Baroncelle.
    • Camino Primitivo: San Froilán in Lugo and Festa da Faba in Lourenzá.
    • Camino Inglés: Omelette Fair in Betanzos.
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