Camino de Santiago 2011

					                                        FMC Travel Club
                          A subsidiary of Federated Mountain Clubs of New Zealand (Inc.)


Club Convenor : John Dobbs
Travel Smart Napier
P O Box 352 Napier 4140
Ph : 06 8352222 Fax : 06 8354211 Email : john@tsnapier.co.nz




                      or “The Way of St. James”
          Walking the ancient pilgrimage route across northern Spain


             1st to 28th September 2011 (trip 1), led by Steve Phillips
           3rd to 30th September 2011 (trip 2), led by Eileen Cameron
           $5,550 ex St. Jean Pied de Port, France to Santiago, Spain
                   Register by 4 February 2011 and save $150 off the final trip price!
                                  th




PRICE INCLUDES :
     All accommodation – small hotels and pensions on twin share basis
     Transport – two train sectors and a day trip by bus, otherwise walking
     Main luggage transportation, visitor taxes, booking fees
     All breakfasts from Day 2 to Day 28 and two dinners
     An experienced Spanish speaking NZ trip leader
     Group guidebooks, maps etc

PRICE DOES NOT INCLUDE :
     Getting to St Jean Pied de Port (France) and from Santiago (Spain)
     Optional single supplement
     Meals that are not otherwise included
     Travel insurance (mandatory)
     Items of a personal nature
Trip Leaders :
Trip One – Steve Phillips
Steve lives in Lower Hutt and has led a very interesting life. He has been an accountant and a teacher, but is an active
retiree now. He has travelled widely and has lived in London, Paris, Canada, South Africa and Sydney, Australia. Among
his interests, he teaches the Maori language and his French and Spanish are pretty good too. Steve is a new tour leader
for the travel club and very capable, so I’m sure you will have a wonderful pilgrimage walk under his leadership.
He welcomes your contact at : stephenandgill@actrix.gen.nz

Trip Two – Eileen Cameron
Eileen hails from the Waikato but has lived in South America for more than a decade, currently in Arequipa, Peru. She has
worked in various aspects of tourism for nearly 15 years, led tours through South America for GAP, and has latterly been
a regular tour leader for ‘Grassroots’ the Auckland based company. She has a wealth of knowledge and understanding of
Latino culture and speaks fluent Spanish and Portuguese. She also holds a BA in Spanish and Latin American Studies. I’m
really pleased to have secured Eileen to lead this trip and I know that you will enjoy a great experience with her. Eileen
also heads up our next programme to Patagonia.
She welcomes your contact at : spantranz@gmail.com




The Camino – an overview :
A great deal of literature is available (and websites to search), so a brief introduction here is all that is required.
The Camino de Santiago (the Way of St.James) is a wonderful walk across the north of Spain, following an ancient
pilgrimage route (they walked, rode and some were even carried), west to the magnificent cathedral at Santiago de
Compostela. Tenth century pilgrims braved bandits and wolves in their quest to revere the bones of St. James, entombed
in a silver casket in the cathedral. Ancient star gazing Celts went this way too, heading west towards the setting sun and
the solar temple at Ara Solis at Finis Terrae, ‘the end of the earth’.
Today, pilgrims walk to Santiago and Finisterre for as many different reasons as there are walkers, (over 100,000 each
year from all over the world), and there has been a modern revival of interest. There are also different sections of the
Camino, people can walk as much or as little of the over 800 kms journey, but to receive their Camino certificate requires
the final 100 kms into Santiago to be walked, as a minimum. The traditional start is just across the Pyrenees in southwest
France and this is where we begin. There are also other less well known or used nearby walking sections, but in the end
“all paths lead to Santiago”. While the full Camino is basically 800 kms long, we will walk arguably the best sections
which will total around 470 kms. We also take a little time out to recover from the walking and to soak up the history and
way of life in 5 cities, enroute. Several train journeys are included to connect everything up. In 1987, the Camino was
declared Europe’s first Cultural Itinerary.
Many people end their journey at Santiago once they receive their Camino certificate. But tradition dictates you continue
on to Cape Finisterre, a few extra days away. We will cover this final section by way of a day bus trip from Santiago, for
the sake of keeping the overall trip to four weeks and keeping overall costs as low as possible. This is a ‘first’ for the FMC
Travel Club – we have not offered a pilgrimage walk before, so are breaking new ground. We believe that to walk the
Camino in a small group of like minded people will be a more rewarding and richer experience than by walking it
individually.

Some recommended references are : Lonely Planet Guides; Walking the Camino de Santiago by Davies and Cole (Pila Pila
Press), they also have a highly detailed and excellent wire bound multi page map; and you can read the blogspot of my
friends who walked the full length of the Camino in 2010 : www.thewayistowalk.blogspot.com
Trip Organisation :
Operations. ‘U. TRACKS’ have provided the accommodations, full maps/trip notes for each leader, and the logistics of
main luggage transfer. Note that the latter will be restricted to one bag up to 12kgs.

Your trip leader has full control ‘on ground’ and is the co-ordinator ensuring everything runs as smoothly as possible.
Steve and Eileen process accommodation check-ins and brief their groups, respond to questions and issues and help with
the language and cultural issues. They will be in communication and support of each other. In addition to the U TRACKS
leader material, Steve and Eileen may have other publications that were used to create the trip.

Accommodation includes a variety of small hotels and pensions typifying the regions travelled through. Rooms are twin
share and some may include bathrooms. We will place solo travelers of the same gender together. A supplement
applies if you request a solo use room.

Transport. There are several shortish train sectors and a day trip by bus to Cape Finisterre. We will book these as a group
and costs are included. Any additional transport arrangements are at your cost. No airport or other transfer types are
included. Otherwise, you walk!

Meals. Simple breakfasts are included, plus we have an arrival and end of trip celebration dinner included. You will need
to allow spending money for other meals, snacks, drinks, etc. Most days there are towns and villages on the trails where
you can buy lunch, stop for a coffee, etc. You may decide to make lunches from markets and shops enroute, and you
should always carry snacks, plenty of water, fruit etc. An enjoyable aspect to the trip is sampling the regional cuisines
and local specialities.

A typical day on the Camino. Ideally, start early, as many of the days will be quite long. Breakfasts are not served too
early in Spain, however. Leave your main luggage out for the transfer when you come to breakfast. You will only need to
have a day pack with the usual range of clothing, food/drink and personal items. Always carry filled water bottles and
take every opportunity to top up at drinking fountains in villages, etc. Carry snacks. Stop for lunch enroute, or maybe
make your lunch as opportunities arise. The trail is generally well marked (scallop shell design markings, plus blue panels
with yellow arrows) and there will often be other walkers from all over the world to encounter. The signs are maintained
by the locals and as it is a pilgrims trail, the locals are friendly and helpful. Surfaces and terrain varies from flat to
mountainous. The main areas to concentrate on route finding are arriving and leaving towns and cities. Be adaptable
and have a keen eye and sense of direction. Sometimes, route finding, losing your way, finding it again and asking the
locals for help is all part of the adventure! The accent is on keeping a steady pace to take in all of the attractions, with
time to stop and take photos. Some of the churches and monasteries are fantastic and you will go off the trail to visit
them A good level of fitness and a steady determination will enable you to really enjoy the Camino. We have included
some rest time between walking sections. With nearly 500kms to walk altogether, these rest periods will be welcomed!

Newsletters. At least one newsletter will be compiled to inform of things not included here. Recommendations on how to
get to St. Jean Pied de Port and how to depart from Santiago will be included, along with an accommodation list, trip
part list, recommended gear list, cultural and food details, and anything else relevant.




Itinerary :
Same itinerary for Tour # two, but it starts two days later. The groups meet up in Santiago.

Day 1. Thur 1st Sept. Arrival day
Arrive into St. Jean Pied de Port, a pretty walled town of cobbled streets and wooden buildings. Meet your trip leader
and others in your group over dinner tonight. You might like to buy supplies for lunch tomorrow as there is only one café
along the route. You should also collect your pilgrims passport from Accueil Saint-Jacques in the town. D.
Day 2. Fri 2nd Sept. To Roncesvalles (or Burguette)
You have 26kms to Roncesvalles to cover, which may take 7 hours. The Camino begins with crossing the old Roman
bridge over the River Nive. Climb towards the Spanish border with impressive views of the Pyrenees. Cross three cols,
Lazandoore and Lepoeder (1375m) and Roncevaux (1057m). Walk through the monastery grounds before arriving at the
accommodation. B.

Day 3. Sat 3rd Sept. To Akerrata
The trail crosses undulating green hills and passes through typical Basque country villages surrounded by cultivated fields
and meadows. Pass through forests of beech, oak, maple, hazel and holly trees. Through the villages of Zubiri (lovely
Gothic bridge) and Larrasoana (dates back to the 12th century) to Akerrata. The three storied houses are typical of the
region’s architecture, with the ground floor for animals, the first floor for people and the shallow top story for pigeons.
Allow 6 hours to cover the 25kms today. B.

Day 4. Sun 4th Sept. To Pamplona
A shorter day of around 15kms. Forest patches, farmland, Romanseque bridges to the town of Trinidad de Arre, which
would make an ideal lunch stop. Continue over several sizeable hills and finally arrive into the historic walled city of
Pamplona, famous for the San Fermin festival, the ‘running of the bulls’ event in July. Enjoy two nights here and soak up
the atmosphere. B.

Day 5. Mon 5th Sept. At leisure in Pamplona
Pamplona is compact, its narrow cobbled streets seemingly squashed together to fit within its commanding walls. The
city was founded by Pompey, and the 14th century Gothic cathedral is said to be built on the site of the Roman capitol.
Enjoy people watching in the plazas, tapas bars and cafes. B.

Day 6. Tue 6th Sept. To Puente la Reina
The Camino trail continues through the heart of Pamplona. The next stretch has few trees and a range of hills with wind-
powered turbines. Scale Alto del Perdon (790m) and descend steeply through a string of villages, some with fascinating
architectural features, such as the octagonal chapel of Eucate. After 25kms and maybe 7 hours you arrive at the small
town of Puente La Reina on the banks of the River Arga. B.

Day 7. Wed 7th Sept. To Estella
Through gently rolling farmland and vineyards with some olive, almond and oak trees. At the beautiful medieval village
of Ciraquai you can walk on a fine example of the original 2,000 year old Roman road. Estella is a graceful, compact
town straddling the River Ega, and is rich in Romanseque monuments and churches. It has a Thursday Market that’s
been in place since the fifteenth century that might be worth visiting tomorrow morning. Today’s walk is 21kms. B.

Day 8. Thu 8th Sept. To Los Arcos
Another 21 kms day, but only one decent hill to climb. Just out of Estella you might like to divert to the imposing Irache
Monastery and its ‘wine spring’ – choose to fill your water bottles with either wine or water! Mostly open fields and no
settlements until Los Arcos, a tiny town on the River Odron. Take water and food with you for the isolated day ahead. B.

Day 9. Fri 9th Sept. To Logrona
Around 29 kms as you walk from the Navarre region into the wine growing region of Rioja. Some moderate hills and
open farmland with few trees today. Pass through an attractive walled town called Viana, filled with imposing family-
crested mansions. Just before Logrono is Laguna de las Canas. This lake is an important bird watching area known for
purple herons, night herons and bitterns. At 150,000 people, Logrono is the biggest town in La Rioja and has a grape
crushing festival at the end of September. B.

Day 10. Sat 10th Sept. To Burgos by train
Free time in the morning, then an afternoon train trip to Burgos. Although this city of 170,000 is a culture shock after the
mellow, timeless feel of the Camino so far, Burgos is full of monuments and its massive Gothic cathedral was made a
World Heritage listed site in 1984. B.
Day 11. Sun 11th Sept. To Leon by train
Continue the break with another train journey across the flat plains of the Meseta region. Leon is one of the most historic
towns of Old Castille province. There is evidence of Roman and Moorish occupation. However, it was the knights of
Templar who built the castles and fortifications in the Middle Ages. It’s a delightful city of open squares, wide boulevards
and narrow winding streets crammed with cafes. B.

Day 12. Mon 12th Sept. To Villadangos del Paramo
Not far from Leon is Virgen del Camino, where legend states that the Virgin appeared in front of a shepherd in 1506, and
asked him to build a shrine. This section is quite exposed so carry water and sun protection. Pass several tiny villages until
you arrive at Villadangos del Paramo, a Roman origin town and site of a significant battle in 1111. Allow 5 hours to cover
the 22 kms. B.

Day 13. Tue 13th Sept. To Astorga
Some easy hills and treed sections but few villages today. Mountains will begin appearing on the horizon. Cross a
beautiful old stone bridge into Hospital de Orbigo for lunch. After 26 kms, arrive at Astorga, home to Roman mosaics. B.

Day 14. Wed 14th Sept. To Rabanal Del Camino
Today is a steady climb of 300m as we head towards the mountains. Pass several tiny villages and then the landscape
changes into dense oak trees, heather and conifers as you ascend “los montes de Leon” before reaching Rabanal Del
Camino (1200m), a charming village. 19 kms. B.

Day 15. Thu 15th Sept. To Ponferrada
A long day of around 30 kms, so allow at least 7 hours. After 7 kms you will reach the highest point of the entire Camino
– Peurta Irago at 1505m and Punto Alto at 1515m. At the mountain pass you will see the “Iron Cross”. Plenty of steep
sections up and down along with forested sections, then down into the valley to the small city of Ponferrada, which has a
Templar castle. B.

Day 16. Fri 16th Sept. To Villafranca Del Bierzo
Around 23 kms but flatter today. The cultivation of many fruits and vegetables is a feature of this fertile well watered
area. Plus there are a number of interesting historic features on or close to the trail. B.

Day 17. Sat 17th Sept. To O‘Cebreiro
Several solid climbs and around 28 kms so allow around 8 hours today. It is scenically beautiful and in fact there are
several route choices to weigh up. There are plenty of dense woodland areas with narrow valleys and a steady ascent of
700m to the village of O’Cebreiro. B.

Day 18. Sun 18th Sept. To Samos
Another longish day of 30kms, but the trend is downhill, despite several ‘bumps’ so allow 7 hours. Some lovely forested
sections today and several villages with drinking fonts along the way and wonderful views of the surrounding country.
From Triacastela, follow the course of the delightful River Ouribio to Samos. B.

Day 19. Mon 19th Sept. To Sarria
Before leaving Samos, be sure to visit the Benedictine Monastery here, which is the oldest in Spain . A short section of
only 12kms to Sarria for two nights to provide a break. Sarria is located on a hilltop with a river on either side affording
fine views of the region. B.

Day 20. Tue 20th Sept. At leisure in Sarria
Take a break, perhaps visit the Church of the Convent of La Magdalena. B.

Day 21. Wed 21st Sept. To Portomarin
A steady climb but only 200m through the hills of Galicia and over the ‘Meceta Lucense’ or Lugo Plateau. Pass through
numerous hamlets with cultivated land, grazing pastures and woodland sections. Today you will see the first ‘horreos’,
typical raised grain silos. Descend, crossing the dam of Portomarin where you can see ruins of the ancient flooded village,
and into the town for your overnight accommodation. Around 22kms today. B.

Day 22. Thu 22nd Sept. To Palas de Rei
A great day of varied terrain passing charming hamlets and calvaries. At Ligonde village is a church dedicated to Saint
James. Around 24kms today. B.

Day 23. Fri 23rd Sept. To Arzua
The terrain is easier but the distance (28kms) a bit longer. Walk through the villages of Carballal, San Xuilan and
Lebereiro and cross six rivers in all. A recommended lunch stop is Melide for its renowned octopus dishes .Pass out of the
Galician province of Lugo and into La Coruna. B.

Day 24. Sat 24th Sept. To Lavacolla
The Camino is noticeably busier as we get closer to Santiago. Pass many ancient sites including monuments, chapels and
bridges – all have a story to tell. Follow country lanes and forest paths to Lavacolla, beside the river of the same name.
29 kms. B.

Day 25. Sun 25th Sept. To Santiago
Not far to the city (11kms) and a mix of dense eucalypt forest and road walking with one long hill. There will be many
walkers today and if you are making for the pilgrim mass at 12 noon, be prepared for huge crowds. An alternative might
be to find a quiet church or square in the city (there are many) to offer thanks for your safe arrival, go to the pilgrim
office and obtain your Compostela; then, early tomorrow visit the cathedral when it is empty and quiet. Enjoy a special
group dinner to celebrate your achievement! B.D.

Day 26. Mon 26th Sept. At leisure in Santiago
There is plenty to see and do, or simply relax and enjoy the atmosphere………
Barely 5% who walk the Camino continue on to Cape Finisterre. One option, if you feel like another 22kms walk, is to
continue on to Negreira and then return to Santiago on a local bus. There are extensive woodlands, plenty of rivers to
cross. Another option might be to visit nearby towns and countryside on a day trip. B.

Day 27. Tue 27th Sept. Day trip to Cabo Fisterra (Cape Finisterre)
The pilgrims of old continued on to the Atlantic coast around Finisterre, a delightful fishing village of 3000 people. We
will take the bus to the village of Finisterre and walk the final 2 kms to the lighthouse at Cabo Fisterra. Below the
lighthouse there’s a small sculpture of a pair of walking boots, where profligate pilgrims traditionally burn their shoes to
celebrate their arrival at the cape. Nearby, a concrete post with a downward pointing scallop shell marks the end of the
Camino, a familiar and fittingly poignant symbol of your journey’s end. Expect to meet up with others from the 2 nd group
as they arrive in Santiago today. B.

Day 28. Wed 28th Sept. Trip concludes
You are free to continue your travels today, or head for home. B.




Options :
     This trip is based on a twin share arrangement. If you specifically want a solo use room, this is on request. It
      comes with a premium of $1400.
     This trip would combine easily with pre or post travels elsewhere in Europe.
     Alternatively, tramping and touring in Berber Morocco would be a great prequel or sequel to the Camino.
      Contact me to learn more about some tempting options to extend your holiday.
Booking Conditions :
  1. The FMC Travel Club (FMC) offers this small group trip in conjunction with Travel Smart Napier (TSN) and U
     Tracks (UT). All travel arrangements are made through TSN. Participants agree to all terms and conditions by
     signing the FMC Registration Form.
  2. FMC is not responsible for any injury, damage, loss, accident, delay or irregularity which may arise from weather,
     defect in any vehicle, vessel or aircraft or through the acts or default of any person or company engaged in
     carrying out any of the arrangements of the trip.
  3. We reserve the right to cancel the trip if minimum numbers don’t eventuate. In this unlikely event, all monies
     paid will be fully refunded. We also reserve the right to make any modifications that may be essential, or to offer
     the other departure if the one you request is full.
  4. The advertised trip price includes a payment to FMC and the apportioned cost of the trip leader’s travel. The final
     trip price depends on factors such as adverse currency fluctuations, government imposed charges, etc. The
     price therefore cannot be guaranteed until full payment has been received.
  5. Registrations are accepted in good faith on a first comers basis on receipt of the Registration Form and deposit
     of $1500. Flights, travel insurance or other travel arrangements made with TSN will have seperate payment
     arrangements. All payments may be made by cash, EFTPOS, cheque, internet banking, visa or mastercard to the
     office of TSN. No other method or place of payment is accepted. Cheques must be payable to Travel Smart
     Napier. Our preferred payment method is internet banking. Please use : 01 0685 0151601 00 ‘Heerlen Ltd T/A
     Travel Smart Napier’ at ANZ Napier. Please add ‘Camino’ in the details as the identifier. No extra charges are
     levied for payments by visa or mastercard. However, we have to absorb commission for accepting credit cards,
     so we thank you for not choosing this payment method.
     A discount of $150 per person is offered off the final trip price but only for registrations received by 4 th
     February 2011. Final trip price is due by 30th April 2011.
  6. Cancellations. If you need to cancel your registration for any reason, you must advise TSN in writing as soon as
     possible. An email is accepted but a phone call is inadequate. Fees apply as follows :
   Cancellations received up to 30th April 2011 we will retain $500
   Cancellations received from 1st May 2011 to 30th June 2011 incur a fee of 50% of trip costs
   Cancellations received from 1st July 2011 onwards incur a fee of 100% of trip costs
   If you find a suitable replacement person, the above cancellation fees may be waived
  7. Travel insurance is mandatory. We recommend you have trip cancellation cover when you register. When we
     confirm viability, we recommend you then increase this to full cover. We recommend QBE Travel Insurance and a
     brochure/application by email or post is available to everyone. TSN will provide a discounted premium on
     receipt of your signed application form.
     It is your choice to buy insurance cover elsewhere, but note it is essential to ensure that cover extends to the
     activities of the trip plus rescue and repatriation including helicopter and air ambulance, along with a minimum
     of $2 million in personal liability cover. You will need to provide full policy details of your travel insurance cover.
  8. Please provide a scan or photocopy of your passport when you register. For NZ passport holders, it is not
     necessary to have visas to enter France and Spain.
Registration Form for Camino de Santiago 2011 :
Complete this form and send to TSN with deposit and passport copy. Minimum and maximum numbers apply to
each trip. All registrations received by 4th February 2011 will receive a discount of $150 off the final trip price.
Registrations close 31st March 2011 or earlier if the trips fill earlier. Unless you indicate a trip preference, we will fill
trip one before we fill trip two at our discretion. Early registrations therefore have more choice.

My / Our names as shown in passport/s (circle your preferred first name)…………………………………………………………………..

……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..

Mailing address…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….

Home phone…………………………………………….Work phone………………………………………Cellphone……………………………………….

Email……………………………………………………………………………Date/s of birth………………………………………………………………………..

Club affiliation (if any)………………………………………………..Summarise recent tramping experiences……………………………….

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Specify any dietary requirements, allergies or medical conditions we should know about…………………………………………

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……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..

Contact person in NZ for emergencies : name, address, email/phone and relationship to you. NB : In the event of any
emergency, this is the sole person you are permitting us to liaise with

……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..

……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..

I / We have read the full trip dossier and I / We enclose My / Our deposit of $1500 per person. I / We agree to pay the
remainder of trip costs by due dates, as advised by invoice. I / We understand the final trip price is not guaranteed
until final trip payment has been made.


…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………signed by each person registering


Send to : John Dobbs, FMC Travel Club Convenor
Travel Smart Napier 4140. Ph : 06 8352222 Fax : 06 8354211 Email : john@tsnapier.co.nz

				
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