Camping on the camino is not the most obvious choice, but there are camp-out lovers who can’t resist this way of traveling.
We would advice to dive into the possibilities of the Camino del Norte. There are way more camping sites on that coastal route. They are usually more expensive than albergues.
On the Camino Francés there are camping sites, but they are often not near the track. On the Camino del Norte there is a bit more availability.
If you decide to go camping and you don’t mind camping stealthily (‘acampada libre) you should take a few things into account.
Be VERY CAREFUL with fire/cigarettes. There are many forest fires in Spain that each year burn away beautiful parts of my country! We have seen this even during the walk: pilgrims smoking while walking and just tipping their ashes in the air – stupid enough to not think about the consequences of a little spark, some wind and a very dry environment.
Before you decide to go camping on the camino and get together all your camping gear, you should know there are rules to follow…
Each ‘comunidad autónoma’ has its own legislation that can be either less or more strict than the national legislation. This applies also to what is considered legal camping. Make sure you ask around to make sure you are not doing anything illegal.
The local municipality laws may also include even stricter rules. Here are some national law indications:
Be very sure you want to carry the weight of the extra gear
Be aware that camping is only cheaper than an albergue if you go wild camping
Wild camping is in most places illegal
Albergues sometimes offer possibilities to camp on the land they own
Always ask permission of the land owner to camp on his land