It’s possible to walk Camino de Santiago the whole year as the routes are open year-round, but there are big differences between the different seasons. Just like with any trip, there are different factors you must consider before making a decision including foot traffic, accommodation availability and weather.
The middle of summer is generally the busiest these major routes get. Consequently, pensions and hotels are fuller, the trails are more crowded and your hike is less likely to feel like an individual journey if that’s why you’re doing it.
However as the Winter months are colder, this means you’ll have more layers to consider when packing. The weather is also unpredictable and some parts of some routes might be covered in snow, so trekking will be more challenging.
In summary, here are the Pro’s & Cons of walking the Camino at different times of the year:
Walking the Camino in April, May, June, September and October – Pro’s & Cons
- Moderate temperatures—not too hot, not too cold
- Moderate crowds make for less busy routes and hikes are easier to navigate.
- More accommodations available
- The downside, though, is you might have to deal with the occasional rain shower so be sure to pack a raincoat.
Walking the Camino in July and August – Pro’s & Cons
- These summer months see the Caminos at their busiest and trails can be crowded with hikers and tourists.
- The cafes, restaurants and pensions and hotels are busier.
- The days are longer, so more time to enjoy the stunning scenery and sunsets.
- The hot weather can be hard to tolerate, making the hike even harder.
Walking the Camino in December, January and February – Pro’s & Cons
- The Caminos are even easier to hike in the winter
- Some parts of the route, especially the mountain passes, might be snow-covered.
- A major pro…. The routes are considerably emptier and quieter.
- Some pensions and hotels are closed during the winter months and you have to pack winter clothing, which generally takes up more space.