Pilgrimage to santiago de compostela

Pilgrimage to Santiago De Compostela

There are very few countries that offer the variety of attractions and culture that Spain has to offer.As a country that still has great inter regional “differences of opinion” – euphemism here for cultural differences and in some cases acts of terrorism, Spain still has a tremendous amount to offer.

the countryside is rich in the heritage of a great many influences from both international and internal sources

It goes without saying that for a country with a profoundly religious influence that there are numerous routes and pilgrimage opportunities throughout the country.

The Camino de Santiago otherwise known as the way of St. James is one of the more popular pilgrimage routes. El Camino de Santiago has had its origin in this in the ninth century and that was one off the three pilgrimages on which all sins could be forgiven for those who would complete the journey.

El Camino de Santiago has out a chequered past with regards to popularity indeed at some points that has been barely interest at all. Folklore says that during this time prisoners used to walk along the route is the attempt to try and perform penance. Whether that has something to do with the lack of interest in the route is open to question actually might be more of an “old wives tale”

Interest in this particular pilgrimage route was revised in the 20th century when UNESCO made Santiago de Compostela a world heritage site – a site that now has since become the setting for one of the world’s biggest pilgrimages.

Today tens of thousands of Christian pilgrims and other travellers from across the globe set out to walk the various routes

There are in fact several routes of which the English route, numerous Spanish routes and the French route of the most popular. It has to be said that the most popular pilgrimage routes originate in France, leading from the north or France right down to Spain. All of the French routes come together and meet in the town of Roncesvalles in Navarre.

To be totally honest nowadays all but the most ardent and fervent pilgrims start out along the Way of St James from Roncesvalles and proceed along the 760 kilometre route to Santiago de Compostela. As they pass through historic towns and villages along the route such as Navarre, Burgos and Logrono, many pilgrims claim that having gone through this experience en route they feel suitably spiritually prepared for when they arrive at the Cathedral in Santiago de Compostela.

The French route is the more popular of the three routes.

The route does go some way to ensure that the pilgrims do not get lost along the way and the most common sign of route markers are the small yellow arrows that are found all along the way. It is said that these were by and large painted in the 1970’S by Father Elias Valdinha who as well as wanting to improve the way also wanted to avoid more confusion that was necessary and also to ensure that all pilgrims arrived at their destination in good order as well as humour!

A considerate man.

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