Camino de Santiago

The Camino de Santiago (Eng. Way of St. James) is an ancient pilgrimage leading to the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela, which honors the patron saint of Spain.  Although the Camino consists of a web of interconnecting trails that run throughout not only Spain but also Europe, the most popular of the Caminos is the Camino Francés (Eng. French Way), which starts in St. Jean Pied du Port in southern France, and after crossing the Pyrenees, leads west across northern Spain.  The Camino Francés is about 790 km/490 mi and typically takes 30-40 days to hike, with an optional extension to Finisterre of an additional 90 km/54 mi (3-4 days).

Hiking the Camino de Santiago was, for me, the single most spiritually transformative experience of my life, and many hikers have indeed similarly testified to its power.  I was so moved by the experience that I even returned during the following two years to hike several other alternative routes including the Camino del Norte, the Camino Primitivo, and the Camino San Salvador, among others.