A Friend on the Caminoa helping hand on the camino frances
Spanish is a beautiful and expressive language. Unfortunately, people speak it FAR TOO QUICKLY!!
But seriously, it’s a good idea to learn a little Spanish before you go on the Camino. Although most people along the way will speak a little English or a little German or French along with Spanish or a regional language such as Galician or Basque, you will find that learning the basics will get you a LONG way. If you speak Spanish, your skills on the Camino will be in demand as even speakers at a very rudimentary level are asked to book rooms, beds, restaurants, ask for taxis and directions!
You don’t have to spend a lot of money on Spanish lessons or fancy programs. Free places to learn Spanish include:
– library books!
– podcasts (Coffee break Spanish, Duolingo, etc)
– online courses
– check out Meetup.com for local groups trying out Spanish conversation
Of course, you *can* spend money to learn the language, and may well learn it faster.
– italki – individual language classes over Skype
– local school boards or universities/colleges often offer night classes in languages
– Rosetta Stone, Babel, Michel Thomas or Pimsleur
– classes at a private language school
– intensive classes at language schools in exotic locations!
Even just knowing these few words, you’ll be miles ahead of most English-speaking pilgrims.
- walking stick
- fixed price meal
- beds/bunk beds/ room
- Agua caliente
- hot water
- heat – as in the albergue has heating
- el yodo
- el ibuprofeno
What about French?
Even though French is a great language to know (many people in the world speak it), it isn’t commonly used on the trail after the first day.