If you are thinking about undertaking the Camino de Santiago you will want to choose the best route for you. There are dozens of routes to approach The Way of Saint James following in the footsteps of pilgrims throughout the centuries. Your journey will come to a conclusion when you reach the wonderous Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela in Galicia in north-west Spain. Here, the shrine of the apostle of Saint James is believed to reside.
Regardless of where you start you will have a spiritual, cultural, and historic journey following in the footsteps of pilgrims that have made the journey for centuries. Let’s look at some of the more popular routes for making the Camino de Santiago. For more information on routes and the cultural wonders, Santiagoways is packed with great information. Visit https://santiagoways.com/en/
The Camino de Santiago from Sarria
From the Galician town of Sarria, the journey to Santiago de Compostela is 100kms which is the minimum official distance needed to collect your ‘Compostela’ certificate. The journey takes 6 days to complete on foot.
Along the way, you will be submerged in rustic and rural wonder as you pass through villages and towns that will give you the feel of walking back in time. You will be greeted by forests and rivers and stone walls. This is a journey which will make you feel at one with the land and is the most popular route of all.
The Way of Saint James from Tui
From Tui often referred to as the Portuguese Way, Tui is a border town between Portugal and Spain. Many cross the border via the international bridge which crosses the Miño River. This 120km trek will take you to the city of Arcade, famous for its oyster festival, Pontevedra famed for its classic architecture, and Lower Rias, where you will be able to taste the famous Albariño white wine.
A nice treat is visiting Padrón, the home of Galician poet, Rosalía de Castro.
Making your Pilgrimage from Baiona
From the fishing village of Baiona, the distance is 126kms and takes 8 days to complete on foot. The village is packed full of attractions all year round though they are arguably best appreciated in the summer months.
Monterreal Castle is not to be missed and Baiona’s famous promenade should also be savored. While here why not try the famed white wine and seafood?
The route takes you along the stunning Atlantic Coast and you will be able to take in the Cíes Islands. Other treats include a visit to the city of Padrón.
St Jean Pied de Port to Santiago
The village of St Jean Pied de Port at the French – Spanish border is very popular among French people and for many is seen as the unofficial starting point of the Camino de Santiago. This route is spectacular and takes you through the Pyrenees.
Another fantastic treat is the city of Pamplona famous for its bull run in July.
Ferrol to Santiago
From Ireland and England, there is only one route to make the pilgrimage and that is to follow in the footsteps of English and Irish pilgrims and start your trek from Ferrol.
This route takes you through the towns of Pontedeume or Betanzos as well as the lush green forests of the interior region of Galicia.