Hiking the Camino de Santiago
The Camino de Santiago, or the Way of St. James is the primary pilgrimage route in the world.
For over 500 years, this pilgrimage route has traversed the entire globe – in only 180 years, Christianity established its grip on Europe, Asia and Africa.
The Camino de Santiago is not simply a hiking trail. It is a spiritual journey, a journey which involves the entire world community, of which 60 million members or seniors are members.
The Camino de Santiago is said to be the railroad of souls. If you think of the Old West as a series of towns and cities, each one represented a country. This belief is solidified by the fact each trailhead borders a country.
Where Are the Hiking Trail’s?
The trail literally starts at the Campo de Santiago – the Ecuadorean embassy – and ends at the Archdeaconate’s Square in Santiago de Chile.
In 1993 the Camino de Santiago was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The trail currently comprises over 100 kilometers and it is split into several sections. These include 20 km walks in Chile, around 65 km in Spain and Madagascar and 10 km in Georgia.
Of the 100 kilometers the Camino del Norte – or the northern trail – is the longest and includes such breathtaking sights as the walls of Santiago de Compostela, the Cape of Good Hope and the islands of Sanogo, Menorca and Barbados.
The trail was opened 30 years ago and is popular with both locals and tourists.
How Good is the Camino?
Croatia, which is a perfect 1,000 meters above sea level, provides some of the very best scenery in Europe. This is what gives the Camino de Santiago – and especially the Way of St. James – such a central place.
This hiking trail, which is Cercesine in the island of Barbados, joins the Camino de Santiago at the end of May.
Since it is such a popular trail, roughly 40,000 people embark on the trip each year.
To walk the entire course takes around five months. Most of the walking is done between April and May.
How much do I need to budget?
The skills required along the trail are basic – no special equipment is needed. If you are going to be backpacking, it is advisable to carry a backpack with a good waistline, a light rain jacket, a hat, a pair of gloves and a sleeping bag.
What food should I take?
You will obviously be carrying all your food with you, so you will need to plan your menu. Some food that is easy to pack will be preferable (such as freeze-dried foods) others will be better (such as dried meals).
You will also need to take some basic medicines. If you are not prepared to handle a bout of diarrhea, a pill will come in handy.
What should I take with me?
The most important things to take with you are light clothing and a change of clothes. You should also take some first aid items with you, such as a pair of nail clippers, insect repellent, and warmer or athermometer.
You will also need to take a first aid kit with all the necessary medication that you are taking at home. This includes pain relievers, tummy pain tablets, etc.
What are the distances on the Camino?
The trail is approximately 2,200 km. Spain has a length of around 7, immersed in the Mediterranean Sea.
How long takes to do the walk?
If walked in one day this will take approximately 6 hours and 15 minutes. But you can reduce the pace and go at a more relaxed pace.
What is the best season to do the walk?
You will need a steady pace throughout the period. If you are afraid of dehydration, remember to take a water bottle with you.
What if I don’t want to walk?
You can always hire a car. Many companies will supply you with a rental car at no extra charge.
Can I do this walk in December/January?
Although the season for this walk is cold, you can be successful. You do not have to walk all the way to the end of the trail. It is the longest walk during the summer season and you can find some nice restaurants along the way.
How do I train for this walk?
This is a walk that is designed to help you become fit. Training has to be done 30 Minutes prior to the walk. It is recommended that you build up to it, but no equipment or special equipment is needed.
What is the best way to prepare for the walk?
The advice in this article is not to do the walk without first getting a good high quality instructor.