Many people say that the easiest way to Santiago is the one they made at a certain time of the year. But this is usually an opinion without objectivity and without solidity. We are talking about varied points of view where the sensation of the road can be easy for one and not for others.
The truth revolves around how we develop the route, our physical condition, the services we hire and those that exist on the selected road. It is a difficult subject to carry considering so much information and roads available.
But really there are routes that can be easier than others if we decide so. A few good tips for St James Way, a smooth step, good equipment, adequate food, a proper rest and encouragement can make it easier.
Which is the easiest way to Santiago?
Despite the different comments and opinions of pilgrims, the easiest way to Santiago is the one that starts from Sarria. This is considered by all to be the simplest. This route is part of the French Way of Saint James in its stage 29.
One of the reasons is that they are only 110 km away and the route is smooth. In only five days we will arrive at the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela as if we had not done the route. Its 5 stages have an average distance of 20 or 23 kilometers that are done between 6 and 8 hours a day.
With this we avoid getting up early or resting a little to continue the next day. If we leave at 6 in the morning at noon we will be in the next village. With this we guarantee a whole afternoon of pleasant tours and visits in the locality.
By bicycle the French Way of Saint James is the best route, it is done in approximately 200 km that is not demanding at all. But it is recommended to start from León, which is the 19th stage of the route by bike. In addition, both routes, on foot or on two wheels, a beautiful landscape is contemplated.
The easiest way to Santiago for beginners
The fever of new visitors seeking to live the experience as a pilgrim on the road to Santiago increases every year. It is well known that there are different routes that vary in stages, kilometers, demands and time.
For those seeking to live this experience for the first time it is necessary that they look for the easiest way to Santiago to begin. When they see what it is like to live this route they will be able to increase the roads and widen them.
Here the important thing is to choose with knowledge and reliable tests so that the road is not traumatic for a beginner. Either without training or with training it is necessary to start with the softest. In this pilgrimage route we do not seek to demonstrate physical condition or performance.
The Santiago Trail is not a sporting challenge for anyone even though many exercise assets have taken it for that. This way is to commemorate our ancestors who made the way daily. The aim is to get to know the temple of Santiago de Compostela and see where the remains of a great apostle are and to improve the Christian faith.
The best route on the way to Santiago for a beginner
If we are clear about the goal and objective of this path, we proceed to choose the best option. Within the 10 official routes that have the services and comfort that we require, three roads of Santiago stand out easier for beginners.
They are the North Way, the Portuguese Way or the primitive way. Now, which of the three roads should we start with? Which is the easiest of the three? Choosing at random from these is not recommended either. There are considerations and interesting factors that help us to incline for the best option.
But calm, they are not factors of life or death but of enjoyment and comfort. Although they are the easiest, they offer very different options that make each one more special than the others.
There is also the factor distance and time between stages of each stage. We know that the goal is Santiago de Compostela and if we do, but for the first time in a shorter number of days to fit the period you have available.
Let’s plan the road to Santiago
Starting from the three paths already known and classified we must make an evaluation and planning of the route. Among the services offered in each way is the one of doing on foot, by bicycle, with support from a car or with backpack transfer.
Each attention is adjusted to different types of users, as a beginner and if you are very energetic, I recommend you to do it on foot and with backpack transport. However, each planning is completely personalized and varies depending on the visitor. I recommend you to read Which way to Santiago?
There are entities that can do this work for you, just indicate some variables and requirements to create the ideal route. On the Internet there are planning configurators for the Way of St. James that are very powerful and help you organize the way of Santiago.
How to make St James Way easier?
Beyond the route we choose it is up to us to make the road to Santiago easier. For that we have prepared some Ideas to make the Way of St. James much easier.
If we make the route on foot it is necessary to know that the luggage must go as light as possible. Packing the essentials is vital between surrendering or surrendering on the way. This is so if you choose not to pay for the service on the way to Santiago without a backpack.
What is recommended is a weight equivalent to 10% of our weight. That is to say, if we weigh 70 kg the backpack must weigh 7 kg. Within the essential to maintain a stable weight and according to the theory we must pack:
- Cotton socks
- Comfortable and durable footwear (we can take a replacement pair)
- Flip-flops for shower time
- Clothing that warms but does not weigh
- Versatile pants that can be changed from long to short
- Few t-shirts because we can wash them on the way
- Sufficient underwear
- Personal toiletries
- Sleeping clothes (always keep them dry)
The first aid kit is essential. Bring what could help us provide an immediate care service. Also some useful utensils such as knife, flashlights, earplugs, among others. As an interesting fact to take a big hermetic bag to place our clothes and to avoid that it gets wet.
We start from the hydration as a fundamental element to take in each stage. We also have nuts that give us energy to continue. We alternate with energy bars, sugars or dehydrated foods that do not generate weight and are easy to digest.
Fruit, chocolate and hard-boiled eggs are options for filling our bodies with carbohydrates. Remember that these roads demand a lot of energy that comes from these foods.
It is advisable to eat heavy when we know we are going to stop for long hours. It is better to eat hard when we no longer have activities on foot or bicycle along the way.
Interesting facts for the road
The first thing is to get rid of the mind that we venture into a traumatic path and difficult to achieve. It is necessary to have our brain as an ally and not as an enemy. It is not a competition, that is why we recommend making each route or stretch in the simplest and lightest way.
We will not win a prize, much less a decoration, if we arrive with more blisters or tiredness. It is a question of enjoying the so magical and wonderful way that offers us the nature and having clear the final objective, Santiago de Compostela. Get to know these great tips to make the way to Santiago easier to do:
- Let’s prepare ourselves physically before starting each route, we do this with warm-ups and previous stretching.
- Avoid rubbing the crotch or other parts using rosemary oil or petroleum jelly.
- Let’s prepare everything the night before so as not to waste time in the morning and rest a little more.
- Drink water every couple of hours so we don’t get thirsty
- Rest is essential before and during the tour. Let’s avoid fatigue or pain in the body
- Follow your own pace, never do the route of another because we do not all resist and perform the same
- A therapy on the feet of warm water with salt is very relaxing
- Choose for the different services offered on each trail such as backpacking, traveling by car or horse. It’s about enjoying not having a bad time.
- If you choose to travel with your pet, do not forget to check how to make the St James Way with dogs.
For those who have the culture of being vegans on the Camino de Santiago there are good culinary offers. In spite of having your own food, it is good to know that there are options on the route.
On the other hand, it would be a good idea to book your accommodation in advance. The northern Spain villas are usually 100% occupied during the summer. Let’s evaluate all the available options and choose the best route.