Best Islamic Architecture on the Camino de Santiago

Though modern pilgrims cite various reasons for undertaking the Camino de Santiago – ranging from adventure to spirituality to physical exercise – the journey is, at its heart, a Christian pilgrimage with roots deep in the Middle Ages.  The medieval era in Spain is not simply a Christian story, however. On the contrary, the periodContinue reading “Best Islamic Architecture on the Camino de Santiago”

Best Experiences on the Portuguese Way

Every camino has its highlights, and the Portuguese Way is no exception. But beyond the cities, churches and landscapes, the Camino de Santiago offers more to the pilgrims who traverse it: singular experiences that live on in our memories long after recollections of museums and Romanesque portals begin to fade.  These are our favourite experiencesContinue reading “Best Experiences on the Portuguese Way”

Camino de Madrid Highlights

The Camino de Madrid is a brilliant if obscure camino linking the Spanish capital to Sahagún on the Camino Francés, a journey of 322km that takes about 13 days. While not a historical Camino de Santiago, this route offers several outstanding historic sites, a surprising variety of landscapes, an opportunity to get off the beatenContinue reading “Camino de Madrid Highlights”

Best Roman Sites on the Camino de Santiago

Pilgrims on the Camino de Santiago tread in the very footsteps of the Roman Empire, traversing Roman roads and Roman bridges as they make their way to Santiago de Compostela. Roman milestones and castra (fortified settlements) are also found along the camino and serve as constant reminders of Rome’s expanse and organisational capacity. These mostContinue reading “Best Roman Sites on the Camino de Santiago”

Estoria de Espanna

The Estoria de Espanna (modern Spanish: Historia de España) is a landmark 13th-century history of Spain written in Old Spanish under the patronage of King Alfonso X ‘The Wise’ of Castile. Recently, the University of Birmingham created a digital edition of the Estoria by bringing together various extant medieval manuscripts. I was fortunate to beContinue reading “Estoria de Espanna”

Nearly 85% Decrease in Pilgrims in 2020

With global travel including the Camino de Santiago thrown into turmoil by the COVID-19 pandemic, 2020 saw the fewest pilgrims on record (for the period 2004-2020) and an 84.5% decrease from the peak of 2019. That eye-opening decrease is the most notable detail of the following analysis, which uses pilgrim statistics published by the PilgrimContinue reading “Nearly 85% Decrease in Pilgrims in 2020”

Variante Espiritual Highlights

The Variante Espiritual is an increasingly popular variant towards the end of the Portuguese route of the Camino de Santiago, starting just after the Galician city of Pontevedra. Regardless of whether you choose the coastal or central route of the Camino Portugués, you can experience this highly recommended ‘spiritual variant’. Our highlights of the VarianteContinue reading “Variante Espiritual Highlights”

Camino Primitivo Highlights

The Camino Primitivo – the Original Way – is the beginning of the Camino de Santiago itself. According to tradition, the first pilgrim to Santiago was King Alfonso II ‘The Chaste’ of Asturias, who embarked from his capital at Oviedo in AD 814 to verify that the tomb of the apostle had been discovered theContinue reading “Camino Primitivo Highlights”

Six Reasons Not to Skip the Meseta

When the topic of skipping stages on the Camino Francés comes up, talk will inevitably turn to the Meseta. Even admirers of this 180km stretch of the Camino de Santiago through flat, hot, shadeless fields between Burgos and León will describe the Meseta as monotonous, while detractors find it incredibly dull and boring.  If you’reContinue reading “Six Reasons Not to Skip the Meseta”

Portuguese Way Highlights

The Portuguese Way (Portuguese: Caminho Português; Spanish: Camino Portugués) is the second most popular Camino de Santiago route after the Camino Francés. Regardless of whether you begin in Lisbon or Porto, or take the central or coastal way, this camino is a special experience that justifies its popularity.  These are our six favourite Portuguese WayContinue reading “Portuguese Way Highlights”