Did you know that pilgrims intending to walk both the Kumano Kodo in Japan and any of the routes of the Camino de Santiago can request what is known as ‘Dual Pilgrim Passport’?
HOW TO BECOME A DUAL PILGRIM
Stamping this Kumano Kodo / Camino pilgrim passport will allow you to become a Dual Pilgrim and receive a limited edition badge either in Japan or Santiago de Compostela (wherever you finish your second pilgrimage). Dual pilgrims must have completed one of the following on each trail:
CAMINO DE SANTIAGO
-At least the last 100kms of any of the Camino routes on boot or by horse, or
-At least the las 200kms of any of the Camino routes by bike
-Takijiri-oji to Kumano Hoongu Taisha on foot (38kms), or
-Kumano Nachi Taisha to/from Kumano Hongu Taisha on foot (30km), or
-Koyasan to Kumano Hongu Taisha on foot (70km), or
-Hosshinmon-oji to Kumano Hongu Taisha on foot (7km) and a visit to Kumano Hayatama Taisha and Kumano Nachi Taisha
You can stamp your Dual Pilgrim Passport in little stamping stations along the Kumano Kodo trail, as well as churches, restaurants and hotels and shops on the Camino de Santiago routes.
Once you have completed both, you can take your stamped passport to the Kumano Hongu Heritage Center, Tanabe Tourism Information Center or Turismo de Santiago Information Centre to receive your ‘Dual Pilgrim’ badge and Certificate of Completion (only in Japan), as well as registering officially as a Camino/Kumano Dual Pilgrim. *Please note, at this time there is no certificate available if you only complete the Kumano.
CAMINO DE SANTIAGO AND KUMANO KODO: TWIN HISTORIC TRAILS
The Kumano Kodo trail in Japan and the Camino de Santiago have a very special connection. Both routes have been important pilgrimage destinations for many centuries and the two trails are officially twinned, as the only two pilgrimages in the world that have achieved UNESCO World Heritage status.
Crossing Europe, the trails of the Camino de Santiago have attracted pilgrims of all backgrounds since Medieval times and has been a melting pot of nationalities and cultures. While the Camino Primitivo was the first Camino trail, the Camino Frances became the most important route for pilgrims since the 12th century, with entire towns and cities growing and developing in order to protect and accommodate pilgrims on their way to Santiago.
Located in the Kansai region of western Japan, the Kumano Kodo has been considered a spiritual place, protected by the gods and associated with nature worship since prehistoric times. People of all classes headed to the Kumano Kodo, from commoners to Emperors, looking for spiritual retreat in the Kii Mountains. The most famous route of the Kumano Kodo pilgrimage is the Nakahechi route, which was traditionally used by the Imperial family and takes pilgrims to the temples of Hongu and Nachi.
You can now book your Kumano Kodo trip as well as your Camino de Santiago with CaminoWays. For a free sample itinerary and to learn more about this historic trail please contact one of our travel specialists.