ABOUT Who is Marie and Torben?
We are a Danish couple who have given our hearts to this ancient Spanish path and feel a profound call to share this love with the world. This is why we started our blog Camino Life
Imagine a fireplace in a classic, Nordic home. This our nest, 40 kms north of Denmark’s capital, Copenhagen. Or should we rather say our camino planning head quarters? Since we walked our first camino, the camino has been calling us, and we spend all the time we can on the camino.
Who is Marie?
Marie works with internships and web-designs at the Forest and Landscape College in the University of Copenhagen. Marie’s love of nature shapes her spare time and vacations. She prefers the tranquility of trekking shoes to the hustle and bustle of shopping and sunbathing. Marie writes the articles of Camino Life, so when there is an ‘I’ – it is Marie. My husband and I both work behind the camera.
Who is Torben?
Torben is an education tutor. His curiosity for the world and especially other people has opened a lot of doors when travelling. He is without comparison the best accountant when it comes to our family, and is an expert at getting more camino for less money. When Marie takes the wrong path (which happens surprisingly often), Torben is the one who guides her back on track.
Our first trek together
Reading this, you probably won’t be surprised, but after clicking on a Danish dating site, we agreed to meet for a walk in the woods. It was the 3rd of January 2013 and we our meeting point was in front of the church by the woods. As fate would have it, we looked each other in the eyes for the first time and then the church bells rang! Returning to our meeting point after an hour’s walk and talk, Marie asked: Shall we go for another walk? We did, and many more since then.
Exactly how many children did you say you have?!
We have a total of six children. We each have three children from previous relationships. We travel with all of them and we travel with some of them. We also travel the two of us. Three of our children have walked the Camino with us. Marie is the mother of Frida (born 1998), Tille (born 2001) and Alfred (born 2007). Torben (1974) is the father of Josephine (born 1997), Victoria (born 1998) and Lucas (born 2001).
And this is what we look like:
How can you afford to travel the camino so often?
We plan! And we save! When we met, we were both notoriously bad at making our travel dreams come true. So we planned our lives and home to include time for travelling. We live low budget in our daily lives. We don’t live in a fancy nor expensive house and we have worked hard to learn and become experts at getting more magical experiences while spending less. We prefer eating our homemade lunch boxes on a hill side to having expensive Michelin meals, if this allows for one more camino walk.
Camino Life – podcast with Dan Mullins
Wonderful Dan Mullins called us from down under to a profound camino talk – suddenly Australia’s not that far away when you share camino passion:
Hear the podcast here (yes, it’s in English…)
How come you keep on walking?
We enjoy life’s greatest freedom when hiking. We are what you would probably call “minimalists”. We do not like travelling with more than what we can carry in our small backpacks. Meaning under 6 kilos. Saying goodbye to all unnecessary material belongings gives us the simple freedom for being right here, right now.
Check out our ultimate, minimalistic camino packing list
Want to join us?
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If you are curious or have questions, feel free to comment under each article or send us a mail at firstname.lastname@example.org. If a few days should pass before you hear from us, don’t worry, we’re probably just hiking somewhere without internet connection! We’ll get back to you as soon as possible.
Hej, Marie, Jen here from the states. I’m planning my first Camino (Portugues) and your wonderful guides are so helpful. I don’t see you mention a water bottle. Do you carry a bottle or bladder with you? Is there plenty of water along the way? Cheers and thank you again. -Jen
Hi Jennifer. Sorry about my very late respionse here. Usually I carry two water bottles (0,5 og 0,7 liters each) – at least on hot days. I haven’t tried water bladders, but people who use them often say they drink more regularly with a bladder because you can take a sip anytime. For me a water bladder probably wouldn’t work, as I don’t want to spend time rinsing it. An important tip if you choose a bottle is to make sure to choose a backpack that allows you to easily take the water bottle out and put it back again without taking off the backpack. Best wishes Marie
Hi Marie and Torbin
I am interested in going on the Camino Frances next year – probably starting early Autumn. I love your Camino shop and wondered if you mail to Australia.
Also your information on what works for you on the Camino is very helpful. I love the turkish bath towel idea and also I have ordered a hiking skirt which I am going to try out over our Australian summer.
For bedding – I am still not sure what to do – I get very warm when I sleep – so constantly throw off the covers or stick a foot out to cool down. If I order one of your wool sleeping sacks – I am wondering if this would work or if I would overheat? Do you also have another layer/blanket on top of this to keep warm or do the alburgues generally provide blankets?
Thank you so much for your wonderful website – so much of your advice really rang true for me.
Hi Nicola. SO happy our website can help you plan your camino and find out what works best for you. We do ship to Australia. Be sure to test your hiking skirt well and with your backpack on so you know if it works or not when hiking. Some women need shorts under hiking skirts to protect the skin on the thighs. Bedding used to be my big concern as well! I truly hate sleeping bags – the whole claustrophobic experience and the synthetic material that makes me sweat. A merino sleeping bag is cooler than classic summer sleeping bags, so it only works when sleeping indoor – or as an extra layer in the sleeping bag when sleeping outdoor (love that feature). What I love about wool is that it kinda adapts to your body temperature – cooling you when you are hot and warming you when you are freezing. Except from very cold caminos (like -7 degrees celsius this March-April) the wool sleeping bag is always my first choice. The design is quite wide, so I have never felt the need to stick out a foot. If the woolen bag should be too warm for you somehow, you can always use it as a blanket. I use it as a blanket in the sofa at home every day. Albergues do not always provide blankets. In the region Galicia blankets have been forbidden, probably due to the risk of bed bugs. Private albergues usually provide blankets. Buen camino! Marie
Hiking skirt – I just got a Macabi skirt today – and so I can practice over warmer months and with smaller back pack to see how I go wearing it. Great tip to try it with my planned back pack.
I think I can always order a woollen sleeping bag from you – and trial it out at home on top of my bed and see if I get too warm. If I use it as a blanket – then I would need some kind of sheet too probably – which is extra weight to carry!!!
Do you ever need an extra fleece blanket to keep warm with your wool sleeping bag in doors? I plan to go in late summer/early autumn.
Hi Nicola. Our woolen sleeping bag is not as warm as a sleeping bag, so in winter it is surely too cold indoor on the camino. When it is cold, I use my summer sleeping bag with the merino sleeping bag as a mummy liner. That works perfect for me. I do not recommend you carry a sheet for the camino – it comes with the bed in all albergues (and hotels) for free. It is a single use sheet. Sounds like a good idea to test the merino sleeping bag at home – and try out how thick pyjamas you need. I have a very warm one which is 300 grams pr. square meter merino. Best wishes Marie
Hi Marie and Torben
My wife and I are planning to walk the Primitivo next year. I know! It’s a long way off, but because of covid we are are maybe a bit overly cautious. I have 2 questions which I hope you can answer.
#1-Is early April a good time to start or would the weather be against us. We both are serious hikers and fit for our ages (70) and we would not enjoy the crowds in the summer months.
#2- As I have plantar fasciitis (I hope it has healed by then) I thought your experience could prove useful when planning stages etc.
Your blog is a wonderful tool for our early planning stages, so thank you
Hi Ken. How lovely you find our blog useful. We are on the camino right now, the French route. To be honest, starting March 25 th this time we have been quite surprised by the weather. The locals have, too. Extremely cold and ocasionally snow. This morning was minus seven degrees when we left. So now we say: Early April can be quite cold, even snow in the mountains. So pack for that. There is a large difference between the number of people on Primitivo and Francés. You will probably enjoy the tranquility. You could even leave later and find tranquility as well. Marie walks right now with a four years old Plantar Fasciitis. It is an injury that takes looong time. You need to be in the best of hands and do stretches every day when walking. Both on the trail and when resting. Buen camino Primitivo! Marie and Torben
I would really love to order a pair or 2 merino socks. I have ordered from the Camino market place twice in the past but never received my items. Do you deliver to South Africa. If so, can you guarantee that I will receive my order.
Hi Marizanne. We do deliver to South Africa. We have sent to orders earlier to your country without problems. We send our orders as letters with insurance so I believe you can order with no worries. Best wishes Marie and Torben
I just saw your post on FB about the Gran Canaria camino you just did – very cool! I tried to follow your instagram link but it doesn’t work. Did you change your IG handle?
Hi Melanie. So glad you liked tihe Gran Canaria post. We are on Instagram here: https://www.instagram.com/friefodspor) our Danish name). Thanks you for writing – I realised the Instagram link on our About page was outdated. Buen camino Marie