Why We Love The Camino de Santiago

Camino Walking

Why We Love The Camino

February is known as the month of love so we’ve decided to take the opportunity to celebrate the thing we love most – the Camino de Santiago. There are many reasons to love the Camino and many reasons to walk the Camino.

We love the camaraderie of the Camino and the unique culture of the regions along the Camino routes. Mostly, we love getting to know the local people and helping you have the best possible Camino experience.

Here are some other things we love about the Camino:

Routes We Love

We love all of the Camino de Santiago routes but there are certain routes that pilgrims love more than any other and here they are:

The Camino Frances

We love the Camino Frances

The French Way is the most popular of the Camino de Santiago routes because it has everything you could possibly want or need. The route begins in Saint-Jean-Pied-de-Port and takes pilgrims through beautiful natural landscapes and historic and lively towns and cities, including Pamplona, Burgos, Sarria and much more! The route also takes you through the famous Rioja region, known worldwide for its wine.

The Camino Frances is also the most social of the routes and you will easily have the opportunity to meet and mingle with pilgrims from all over the world. The last 100km of the Camino Frances from Sarria to Santiago is the most popular section of the route. Those who walk this final 100 km into Santiago de Compostela, stamping their pilgrim passport along the way, are eligible for the Compostela Certificate, a special document and unique souvenir of the trip of a lifetime.

Coastal Routes

Coastal Caminos are a wonderful way to experience the joy of the Camino along with breathtaking views and that all-important sea breeze (especially during the warmer months). These routes are also where you’re going to find the best seafood, as the coastal regions are dotted with quaint fishing villages producing fresh and flavourful seafood.

Some of the highlights include the Camino Portugues from Vigo to Santiago, the Camino Finisterre from Santiago to Muxia and the complete Camino del Norte, which is a treat for all the senses. You can also cycle many of these routes, with our favourite being the cycle route from Porto to Santiago.

Routes Less Travelled

For a bit of a change, the Camino Finisterre is a unique route in that it is the only trail starting in Santiago and taking pilgrims to the Atlantic coastline. Finisterre has a magical air to it and it was once believed to be the end of the world.

For something more unique, you can experience the Rota Vicentina from Porto Covo to Sagres and you can even walk the Camino Finisterre in reverse, starting in Muxia and finishing your walk or cycle in Santiago de Compostela, just like all the other traditional Camino routes.

We love the Camino food

Food We Love

The Camino de Santiago routes cover countries and regions of such variety that you have the opportunity to have a truly delicious experience while walking the Camino.

When it comes to food on the Camino, look no further than the Northern Way. The cities along the Camino del Norte are famous for their produce and the skill in which they craft their culinary dishes. The city of San Sebastian is a Mecca of dining pleasure, with 11 Michelin Star restaurants located in the city, it’s no wonder the food of the region is beloved worldwide. To immerse yourself in this culinary wonderland, we’d recommend walking the Camino from San Sebastian to Bilbao. This section of the Northern Way can be completed in a week and it’s the perfect way to get a taste of everything the Basque country has to offer.

If you are walking the Camino Portugues, you will get the chance to sample a whole new array of food and drinks. There’s so much to love about Portuguese food, you’ll struggle to find a bad meal. The freshness of local produce grown and caught by the sea is sublime. Some highlights include pastel de nata, Francesinha, cod and port wine. For more inspiration, look at our 10 must-try Portuguese foods. To get the most out of your experience, you can combine your culinary tour of Portugal with a short 3-day break from Porto.

Traditions We Love

There are many traditions and rituals popular along the Camino de Santiago – here are some we love!

Stamping Your Pilgrim Passport

The Pilgrim Passport is the modern-day version of the medieval ‘documents of safe conduct’ and is an essential part of your Camino experience. Stamping this passport is a great way to document your trip and remember all the wonderful places you’ve visited. The Pilgrim Passport also acts as proof that you have walked at least the last 100km of a Camino route, which is essential if you’re hoping to receive the Compostela.

Following The Yellow Arrows

If you are ever feeling lost on the Camino, you can always take comfort in the fact that there’s a yellow arrow nearby to help guide you along the right path to Santiago. The yellow arrows are a practical part of your Camino journey but they are also something we love, it’s a sense of comfort. You’ll find yellow arrows painted on trees, footpaths, buildings, poles and much more. These arrows mark the way of St James for thousands of pilgrims walking to Santiago de Compostela every year.

Attending a Pilgrim’s Mass in Santiago

Love the Camino Pilgrim's mass in Santiago

Pilgrim’s Mass takes place every day at noon in Santiago de Compostela cathedral. It is a very special moment for most pilgrims, having finally reached their destination after a long journey. If you are lucky, you might even see the impressive ‘botafumeiro‘ in action.

Cities We Love

There are so many wonderful towns, villages and cities along the Camino de Santiago and here are some of the cities we truly love along the Camino.


The city of Pamplona is located in the Navarre region along the Camino Frances. This vibrant city has developed on the banks of the Arga river and is the first Spanish city pilgrims encounter when starting their Camino from Saint-Jean-Pied-de-Port. Pamplona is famous for its annual running of the bulls festival and was also a frequent host to the famous writer, Ernest Hemingway, who drew inspiration from the city for his book, The Sun Also Rises.

Disover Pamplona: Camino Frances From Pamplona to Logrono


The beautiful city of Ourense is best known to Camino walkers as the starting point of the last 100km of the Via de la Plata. Known as ‘Auria’ by the ancient Romans, Ourense is most famous for its thermal hot springs, which are full of health benefits. The city is also known for its bridges over the River Miño. Of the eight bridges crossing this river, the most famous is the Roman Bridge, which was built in the 1st century and has been renovated over the centuries. Ourense is a true hidden gem and well worth a visit. This section of the Camino de Santiago is not as busy as others and makes for a wonderful bit of escapism.

Discover Ourense: Via de la Plata from Ourense to Santiago


The UNESCO World Heritage city of Siena has attracted visitors for many a year. We love Siena for its history and gorgeous Tuscan surroundings. The city’s lively atmosphere makes it a wonderful place to spend a day or two. If you are walking the Via Francigena in Tuscany (which is an incredible route overall), then you simply must soak in as much of Siena’s beauty and culture as you can. The Via Francigena in Tuscany is also a great route for families as even little pilgrims won’t be able to resist the allure of Siena!

Discover Siena: Via Francigena in Tuscany from Lucca to Siena

Santiago de Compostela

Love the Camino de Santiago

We couldn’t talk about the cities we love on the Camino without mentioning Santiago de Compostela. The jewel of the Camino crown, Santiago is home to the tomb of St. James but is also a vibrant city with a rich historic tradition. Even if you had no interest in the Camino de Santiago, the city has enough bars, restaurants and a host of welcoming people to make any stay in this city unforgettable.

Discover Santiago: Santiago de Compostela

We hope you enjoyed this article and that you love the Camino as much as we do. Please do feel free to share why you love the Camino in the comments below or on social media – we’d love to read about it!

For more information about the Camino de Santiago, the various routes or if you would like some help planning your perfect Camino adventure, please don’t hesitate to contact us. You can also stay up-to-date with all our latest news on our Facebook Page.


  1. By Clarence morency

    Very interesting to read just love walking,did Camino France,coastal in Portugal and Le puy en valey in France to saint jean pied de port a beautiful hike
    Next one hopefully Camino Norte.

  2. By Rosemary Rackham

    I walked with my husband and friends in 2007 from Saint John Pied de Port to Santiago and then onto Finisterre, a very deep spiritual and wonderful experience. In 2009 we walked from Lisbon to Santiago, and onto Muxia and Finisterre.

  3. Thank you so much for your kind comment, I hope you’ll get to walk the Camino del Norte next!

  4. Thank you for your comment Rosemary, what wonderful walks.

  5. By Gregory Stegman

    35 days that changed my life in 2014 when I walked the Camino Frances. The three stages of change occurred each ten days. The letting go
    The Inner Journey
    TheSpiritual Awareness
    I’m now hooked on ancient spiritual journeys, having now experienced, Camino Portuguese, St Olvas Way Norway, Jesus Trail Japan, Kumano Kodo Buddhist trails Japan plus a few more. Great post and well written

  6. Hi Gregory, thank you for your kind comment and for sharing your experience with spiritual journeys!

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