The way of San Olav is an easy 3-day walk from Burgos to Covarrubias in Spain, to the tomb of the princess Kristina of Norway.
On purpose, I have named this guide “A Walker's Guide”, since this route is not a pilgrimage as such; There is no saint or holy place at the end, only the tomb of a Norwegian princess, 800 years old. But it is a nice, tranquil and easy walk thru pleasant and undisturbed landscapes in rural Spain.
A nice break from the noise of the Camino Frances, if you want a couple of days in solitude. No bed race here...
GETTING A CREDENTIAL, MAP & INFO
The Tourist Office in Burgos can supply you with a credential containing space for sellos, and route info, and a brochure containing a map; all with glossy paper, so you'll need to let your sellos dry for a few minutes.
Note that some of the information in those papers may not be totally correct/updated (see more further down in this guide), but all in all, together with this guide, you should have no problems getting there.Some
SHOPS & WATER
There are no shops on this Camino. The villages are small, so you eat in your Casa Rurales, have them prepare your breakfast/lunch, and eat some in the bars that exist. If you need more, you buy it in Burgos and carry it. Always carry enough water, as I only found 2 working fountains.
You will need some basic Spanish, at least for booking, directions, foods, etc. Also, by being able to communicate at basic level at least, your walk will be much more enjoyable, IMHO. There is no much understanding of English in rural Spain.
ALBERGUES & ATM
There are no albergues on this Camino, only Casa Rurales. And no ATMs until Covarrubias, but bring enough cash for drinks, food and Casa Rurales.
OTHER RESOURCES ON THE INTERNET
There is an interesting and informative piece of info regarding the route and its surroundings obviously recorded by another walker on the website Wikiloc.com.
The tourist office in Covarrubias has a website in Spanish only.
The San Olav chapel hasits own website with info on opening times etc. All is in Spanish, but the keepers are Norwegians and will understand English if you use their contact form. Check opening hours. E-mail address: email@example.com
The world's largest English-speaking forum on the different Caminos in Spain is www.caminodesantiago.me/community. It has a separate section on El Camino San Olav. Ask and get answers there.
There exists a nice website for this Camino in English, Spanish & Norwegian. Very good descriptions of the villages en route, and a good map service, but not always precice regarding the route and stopping places. However, very interesting, and complementary to this guide.
This will normally be a 3-day walk. The chapel is open only on Saturdays and Sundays, so if you start from Burgos on a Thursday or Friday, you will be able to attend to the Sunday sermon. Check beforehand if there actually is a sermon the actual Sunday. Also,the church in Covarrubias with the sarcophagus with Kristina is, is closed on Tuesdays.
The way is normally marked with dark poles, some red painting and a San Olav cross on top. They are not big, so keep your eyes open. A few of them have been stripped of the San Olav cross by what we must call “touristigrinos”, but the red paint is still there to follow. You will also find some stone markers. Just follow the San Olav cross.