July 6 to October 1, 2015

Camino de Santiago/Way of St. James

I walked the Camino after ‘quitting’ my former office job life. I started it to think about a lot of stuff and to find a new direction and came back as a traveller and with my beloved dog Kokosnuss which I adopted on the road in between.

If you want to read more beside the following sumarize and to see more pictures of the trip, feel welcome to go to my former travel blog Eni&Coco on the road.

Spots: La Rochelle, Yves, Fourais, Vergeroux, Port-des-Barques, Marennes, Saint-Georges-de-Didonne, Royan, Le-Verdon-sur-Mer, Le Gurp, Le Pin Sec, Hourtin Plage, Lacanau Plage, Le Porge, Andernos-les-Bains, La-Teste-de-Buch, Saint Paul en Born, Moliets-et-Maa, Labenne, Ondres, Bayonne, Anglet, Saint Jean de Luz, Donostia/San Sebastian, Zarautz, Bilbao, Torrelavega, Ribadesella, Oviedo, Luarca, Foz, Ribadeseo, Mondoñedo, Villalba, Miraz, O Pedrouzo and finally Santiago de Compostela

Highlights and experiences:
First of all I have to say it was an incredible experience and exactly the start for my travelling life that I needed. With time to think about so many things, great nature around me, inspiring talks and lessons I’ve learned about me, being alone on the road and the people I met on the Camino. It’s literally a walk with the body and the mind and the perfect base for a traveler (or half-traveler) life.

Due to the fact that I love the ocean I did the Camino del Norte which goes along the coast of France and Spain.

The trip started in La Rochelle, France.
For accommodations I used mostly Couchsurfing (and I had incredible, amazing hosts to whom I send a huge big thank you for being part of my journey: Max, Claire, Adeline and Laurent, Phillipe, Sophie and her daughter Line, Jules, Julien et Line, Guillaume, Eva, David, Nicolas, Barry and the others I forgot) and campsites during my way in France. So I was able not to spend that much money, enjoying nature, to meet a lot of so friendly and helpful people and to have inspiring talks and experiences with locals.

In France I met nearly no other pilgrim because the most people start in Spain and not in France. But it’s definitely worth to already start in France. The nature and villages are beautiful, a lot of sun, surf spots, beaches, animals and time for yourself.

I also tried to do a little bit of sightseeing when there was something near my way, architecture as well as art. One of my favorites was an exhibition in the Parc of Royan about couples and how they show love to each other while embracing.

The three most important things on the way were first the time alone where you have time to think, struggle, fall down and then continue stronger then before. Second the people I met, the experiences we shared and the talks we had. Last but not least the nature surrounding. It’s incredible what nature is able to create and you start to feel that you’re part of it and it gives you a lot of energy.
The experiences which stayed the most in my mind were:

  • Max and his crazy, funny and friendly slacklining and music making friends (watch them on YouTube here )
  • the day when I found myself in the biggest nudist camp of Europe by accident, while trying to find the way back to the street… I’ve never felt so clothed
  • I did some woofing in Le Porge
  • joined a Reggea concert and night parties on the beach
  • played with waves and nearly lost this game two times, but survived with a fright
  • my fear of spiders became less
  • I learned how to find the north star
  • experienced great French music
  • slept alone in the forrest
  • climbed with my whole laguage the biggest shifting dune in Europe
  • tried standup paddeling
  • learned to listen to my stomach feeling and to be honest to myself (one of the hardest things because you don’t see only the things you want to see but also your darker sides)
  • tested how long I can feel comfortable without having a shower
  • I met incredible, generous and interesting people
  • experienced canyoning
  • walked through stormy rain
  • did snorkeling and saw an octupus
  • swam under a waterfall
  • found some mystical calm ruins of old houses and so much more.

In between – after nearly 1 ½ months on the road – I received one of the greatest gifts in my life: I adopted my beloved dog Coco aka Kokosnuss out of an animal shelter in Capreton, and we will be beside each other hopefully for the next 15 years.

If you have any questions regarding the Camino, don’t hesitate to contact me 😊

Lots of love and I hope you enjoy the pictures 💚