For thousands of years, millions of people have walked the legendary Camino de Santiago, experiencing the spirit of the Camino and life as a Pilgrim. Here are 10 things you need to know about the Camino de Santiago if you want to join the Buen Camino Tribe :-
1. Camino de Santiago means Way of St James and refers to the different routes leading to Santiago de Compostela, in Galicia. Santiago de Compostela means St James of the field of stars.
2. There are over 20 different Camino de Santiago routes across Europe and beyond – all roads lead to Santiago! The French way is the most popular and well-known route.
3. A person who walks the Camino is known as a Pilgrim or Peregrino in Spanish. A Pilgrim needs to walk a minimum of 100km of any Camino to receive their Compostela Certificate
4. The Scallop shell is the universal symbol of the Camino de Santiago. You will see the scallop shell on many of the Camino signs and most Pilgrims choose to wear a scallop shell on their rucksack to show that they are a Camino Pilgrim.
5. In medieval times, a Pilgrim would begin their Pilgrimage from their home AND walk back from Santiago de Compostela.
6. You don´t need a map to walk the Camino de Santiago – you just follow the yellow arrows that are painted along the way, just like Dorothy following the yellow brick road in Wizard of Oz!
7. Over 200,000 people walk the Camino de Santiago and receive their Compostela Certificate every year!
8. Pilgrims greet each other with Buen Camino on the Camino de Santiago. They have joined the Buen Camino Tribe!
9. KM 0 of the Camino is actually not in Santiago but in Cape Fisterra, by the Atlantic Ocean, considered to be the ‘end of the world’ and a place of magical powers for pre-Christian communities.
10. 25th July is St James Day, a holiday in Santiago and Galicia. If 25th July falls on a Sunday, it will be considered to be a ‘Holy Year’ or Ano Xacobeo.
Would you like to experience the Camino spirit and life of a Pilgrim? Join me on a seven day adventure on the Portuguese Camino de Santiago next summer. We’ll wander the way together. Click the link below for full details.
(c) Samantha Wilson 2018. All Rights Reserved.