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Noticias Internacionales

Hiking the Camino de Santiago: top tips and FAQs

Radio Camino de Santiago 31 julio, 2022



The Camino de Santiago is one of the world’s epic hikes, typically beginning somewhere in SpainPortugal or southwestern France, and ending in the city of Santiago de Compostela in Galicia. Specifically, the finishing point is the shrine of the apostle Saint James the Great within the city’s cathedral, as the route was first established in the 9th century as a major pilgrimage trail in medieval Christianity. Today, the Camino de Santiago attracts hundreds of thousands of pilgrims every year, religious and non-religious alike.

People hike the Camino for reasons personal to them. Some see it as an exercise in spiritual growth, particularly the religious; some do it for want of a break in their everyday lives and a period of introspection; whereas others are into hiking generally and get a great sense of accomplishment from covering several hundred kilometers. I got the low-down from Dorota Žigová on what it’s like to hike the Camino de Santiago, having taken to the trail herself in August 2021. First, she told me about her own reasons for doing it, as well as what she took from the experience.

“I did it alone and I would absolutely recommend this to anyone, especially if they’re going through a tough time in their life, because it’s a great way to recharge yourself emotionally. It’s a totally new experience, a new routine in a new environment, where you can find out a lot about yourself. It was the first time I traveled solo, and this might sound dramatic, but it really changed my life. Now I’m confident that I can accomplish anything I set out to do.

Ever since I hiked the Camino, I’ve become more independent, more spontaneous, and less afraid to throw myself into new things. And sometimes, when I’m feeling down, I think about the simple pleasures that I had at the time — a decent meal and a cold beer at the end of a long day, for example — and remember how such small things made me feel on top of the world.”



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