Camino or Everest?
looks like we will take a trip later in the year.
Again, eight kids (by then will be aged 6-17) and Grandpa at 80 years of age. Two parents too.
We have been invited to go to Nepal with friends who used to live there and trek to Everest base camp with them.
We had a personal goal of walking the Camino de Santiago.
Which would you do and why?
I've done neither (wish list) but could the older and younger members of your tribe handle the extreme altitude of Everest base camp? I would favour the Camino because I'm told by those who have done it that it is doable by many ages/fitness levels, plus those who can't handle the trekking have other options of getting around, but mainly because you stated it was/is a "personal goal."
Everest Base Camp will still be there!
Hope that helps,
I would say do Everest now, for the exact same reasons Paddy gave for the Camino. I've done a lot of the road (all of it if you count cheating with buses : ) and I live in one of the road's towns, and as Paddy said it is completed by pilgrims of all ages and fitness levels, with support for every type of travel. This means it really is one of those trips you can put off for a while without worrying about getting too old or out-of-shape for it. I'm not sure the same can be said about an Everest trek.
Then I reread your post and I gather that the whole tribe is going on the trip? If this is the case, then definitely the Camino. It'll be the absolute perfect trip of a lifetime to do with four generations of your family. Congrats on that! I wish I had that much of my family alive to take such a symbolic trip with.
If it were you and say, a 12 year old, maybe the everest trek. But Basecamp is pretty high, and getting there is pretty rough. Turning back could be a number of days for medical help, while on the Camino there are medical facilities within a a few hours drive no matter where you are, unless you´re on top of a mountain. Most of the trek is not on the mountain top.
I know of no families that have regretting walking the Camino, because your options for carrying it out are much greater, regardless of your walking style.
P and I did it last year and found it to be quite flexible in terms of changing plans. Staying an extra night because of aches/pains/blisters OR deciding to move on after you thought yourself done for the day. We found a wide range of accomodations, from Albergues to apartments to pensions. The apartments had fully stocked kitchens that would be great for you to rustle up a dinner for your clan.
Having said that-we didn't see any children at all. I think though, the camino is like life and one tends to find people who are there for the same reasons. Like finds like so to speak. We found people who walked more for travelling reasons, to see the country, drink in the scenery and the wine. People who walked for more pilgrim reasons found same sort of pilgrims as they went to masses and all the churches.
You could make this a civics class or lesson for your clan, hold a faux-election. Each one could campaign for their own choice-research and present posters, debates etc to sway the rest to their side, for their vote.
What at great choice to have to make! Have fun!
Firstly, because as others have pointed out Camino is something that people of all ages manage whereas Grandpa might not be able to cope with Everest next time the opportunity comes up.
Secondly, the Kiwi connection. How cool for your kids to get to trace Hillary's footsteps! El Camino obviously has some amazing sights and history along the way but to a even adults get "churched out" after a while - the kids will probably hit their limit much sooner, whereas getting to visit somewhere as exotic as Nepal and seeing where one of our greatest national heroes made history is really something to get excited about - and makes for much better bragging rights to their mates.
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