Frequently Asked Questions

A Fresco Start 200KM, Your Self-Guided Walk
Duration: 13 days / 12 nights
Distance: The Last 200 KMs to Santiago

On the Road
Getting There & Back
Before You Go / Preparing
Miscellaneous

On the Road

What is the weather like on A Fresco Start 200KM Tour?

The Camino de Santiago covers over 750 KMs of Northern Spain and therefore has very different weather conditions depending on the region.

A Fresco Start 200KM covers the last 200 KM's of the Camino in the Northwest region called Galicia. Here we enjoy a more temperate climate than other parts of the Camino de Santiago and in July and August the heat is not overwhelming like it can be on the plains of Castilla y Leon.

For current and average monthly temperatures of Ponferrada and Santiago de Compostela, please click below:

Ponferrada
Santiago de Compostela

What is the terrain like on A Fresco Start 200KM Tour?

In Galicia, the region where we walk, the terrain is green rolling hills - there are neither steep climbs nor treacherous descents. The trail itself is a combination of very well maintained compact dirt and stone footpaths and small country roads.

What is the change in elevation on A Fresco Start 200KM Tour?

You will be walking from Ponferrada to Santiago de Compostela, the last 200 KM's of the Camino de Santiago. For a detailed map of the distances between towns along the Camino and their respective altitudes, please click here. This data has been kindly provided to us by Arturo Murias of: http://www.godesalco.com

How many kilometers are walked each day on A Fresco Start 200KM Tour?

The amount of KMs scheduled for each day varies from 13KMs to 29KMs. You will walk the last 100KMs to Santiago, which is the requirement by the Pilgrims' Office in Santiago if you are going to ask for the Compostela Certificate.

What if I am unable to walk the scheduled daily kilometers?

We will provide you with daily maps of your walk. These maps include the elevation gain and loss along the stage, the address and a detailed map of where your hotel is located, our favorite restaurant recommendations along the trail for lunch and dinner, and a list of taxi phone numbers in case you need a lift.

Will I have access to WiFi?

Yes, but you will be walking in one of the most rural parts of Spain so the service may be a bit difficult or slow in certain locations. Nonetheless, many cafes along the way also offer Wi-Fi so you'll have several opportunities to be online. Finally, remember that one of the greatest joys of the Camino is cultivating the ability to disconnect and enjoy your immediate surroundings!

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Getting There & Back

How do I get to A Fresco Start 200KM Tour starting point?

Ponferrada (Spain) is the official starting point of A Fresco Start 200KM tour and can be reached via train or bus.

Traveling from either Madrid or ACoruña (Galicia), one can choose between the train (RENFE) or the bus (ALSA).

For an example of prices and timetables, please see:
Train: Madrid to Ponferrada (PDF) & ACoruña to Ponferrada (PDF)
Bus: Madrid to Ponferrada (PDF) & ACoruña to Ponferrada (PDF)

How do I get from Santiago Compostela to Madrid and other cities?

There are now RENFE trains that will get you from Santiago to Madrid in less than 6 hours. While routes and availability may vary upon time of booking, click here for a sample timetable. The direct trains are listed as Alvia. If you are looking to fly, there are excellent internal flights that fly Santiago to Madrid. For a complete list of companies that service the Santiago airport, please click here.

Can you help with purchasing online train tickets on the RENFE site?

The RENFE website can be a bit temperamental and is not very user friendly. However, all is not lost! We would be happy to have our local travel agent assist in making those arrangements for you. Keep in mind that train tickets cannot be purchased until 60 days prior to departure. Routes and availability are subject to vary based on maintenance needs.

How do I get from the Madrid Airport to the Madrid Train Stations?

If your flight flies into Madrid's T-4 (Aeropuerto T-4) terminal, you have a local Cercanias train that will get you from the airport to the Atocha and Chamartín train station in 25-30 minutes. These trains leave the T-4 station more or less every half an hour. For more information, please see: http://www.renfe.com/EN/viajeros/cercanias/madrid/index.html

In addition, there is an express bus that services the all terminals at the airport with the Atocha Train Station: http://www.emtmadrid.es/Bloques-EMT/Aeropuerto.aspx?lang=en-GB.

How do I get to and from the Airport?

The national organization of airports in Spain (AENA) has a great website that explains how to get to and from the major city for your airport of choice. It also has information regarding the routes serviced, the corresponding airlines, terminal information, and much more. You may have to re-click the "English" tab at the top once you have chosen your airport.

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Before You Go / Preparing

What type of boots do I need for A Fresco Start 200KM Tour?

Footwear is a very personal question - depending on how active you are and how much support you will need. Since we will be walking on a daily basis on the Camino de Santiago, I believe that comfort is key - you do not want to get blisters. You probably won't need a full high boot that covers your ankle (unless you need this support), but rather light trail walkers or even running shoes if you are used to walking. In the spring, there may be mud and water along the trail, so keep that in mind. Most important: Make sure that they are well broken in!

What sort of conditioning do I need to undertake A Fresco Start 200KM Tour?

We encourage you to walk before and be prepared for your own enjoyment. As you will be walking from inn to inn, you should be prepared to cover the day's full stage. They say your Camino begins once you decide to do it, so enjoy your "training" walks and get those KM's in before your arrive to Spain! As a bit of insurance, we will also provide you will a list of taxi phone numbers... just in case

How do I purchase travel insurance?

If you are interested in travel insurance, we like Squaremouth.com, which allows you to compare various policies across the top Insurance Providers. Visit our personalized Squaremouth for Fresco Tours Clients page, where we have taken the time to wade through policies that don't fit your needs (such as immigrant travel, golfing or and other specialized trips, etc.) to make your selection process easier.

In addition, we encourage you to check out TravelInsuranceReview.net, which explains the different insurance policy options in simplified lingo and provides editorial reviews of the insurance companies in terms of "The Good, The Drawbacks & The Bottom Line".

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Miscellaneous

Where do Fresco Tour clients come from?

We are very fortunate to have had clients join us from around the world giving us a wonderful mix of diversity. The internet allows us access to the world, and since 2006 we have had travelers from the USA, Canada, Puerto Rico, Bermuda, Panama, Mexico, Venezuela, Peru, the United Kingdom (England & Scotland), Ireland, Denmark, Finland, Norway, Spain, Australia, New Zealand, Hong Kong, Japan, Korea, China, India, South Africa, Namibia and even Egypt! It truly is a small world after all!

When do most people walk the Camino de Santiago?

According to the Pilgrim's Office in Santiago de Compostela, in 2012, 38% of all pilgrims who requested the Compostela arrived in July and August. This makes sense since many Europeans and students have their vacation time in the summer. Whenever you decide to walk, you will always be able to find that "quiet time" for yourself along the trail. In addition, walking with Fresco Tours means that you won't have to worry about your meals, your pack, where you'll sleep, or anything else. You do the walking and leave everything else up to us!

For complete pilgrim statistics, click here.

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