The first thing you need to know when planning to walk the Camino in Slovakia is that you will not find yellow arrows on trees, stones or posts like those in Spain. That is due to the fact that Slovak legislation does not allow putting this type of marks anywhere, unless you have the relevant permits (owner, municipality, environment and monument protection authorities, etc.). This implies demanding and slow paperwork, though.
Luckily, former Czechoslovakia — that is Slovakia and the Czech Republic — have perhaps the best and densest network of hiking trails in the world. Slovakia alone has over 15 000 km of perfectly marked hiking trails. Depending on their difficulty and length, these trails are different colours: red, blue, green and yellow. These paths criss-cross practically the whole country, except for predominantly flat and agricultural areas. Therefore, the best and easiest way how to mark the Camino in Slovakia is using these paths. In fact, this network is so dense that it would be really difficult to avoid.
So, instead of yellow arrows, you should be looking out for two types of markings: a yellow scallop on a dark blue background on signposts as well as scallop-shaped cobblestones in major cities. In Slovakia, the Way of St. James is marked mainly on signposts along trails managed by the Club of Slovak Hikers (KST) and the Slovak Cycling Club (SCK). Other sections passing through regions with no such trails have not been marked in the field yet but are described in detail in the guidebooks you can order directly on this site (Shop).
Here you can see the different Camino marks in Slovakia. Click on the photo to enlarge it.
When following a hiking path, tourist signposts (marked “KST”, an abbreviation of Club of Slovak Hikers) mark the beginning and the end of the trails, as well as the points at which two or more trails meet. One signpost can consist of one or several signboards showing the directions and distances to the different destinations. Look for small stickers with a yellow scallop on a dark blue background next to the trail you are going to follow.
Remember that you will NOT find any other Camino marks between signpost. You need to follow the colour of the relevant trail, instead. For example, if the Camino sticker is next to a green mark, you should follow the green marks until you get to the next signpost. It will tell you whether you need to continue on this path or not.
The hiking path marks are easy to recognize. They consist of three horizontal stripes forming a square about 10×10 cm in size. The top and bottom stripes are white while the middle one is the colour of the path you are following (red, blue, green or yellow).
Note: When following a hiking path in the woods or in the country, at some bifurcations you might not know what direction to take. No sign marking the way means that you need to go straightforward without turning right or left.
Biking signposts have separate signboards for every path and show the distance to the nearest signpost. Bike trails also have different colours: red, blue, green, yellow and black.
Again, there are NO Camino marks between two biking posts, just biking marks. The biking marks consist of a white square with a colour C in it. A triangle the same colour as the C forms an arrow that shows you the way.
Bronze and fireclay scallop-shaped cobblestones can be found in the historical centres of some major cities (e.g. Nitra and Košice).
Our civic association is not the only subject marking the Camino in Slovakia. Unfortunately, other markings — yellow arrows on trees and rocks — are mostly unsystematic and might lead nowhere.
Therefore we strongly recommend not to follow them. Make sure you follow the route your map or app shows.