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What are the most popular Camino de Santiago routes?

Over 240,000 pilgrims trekked at least 100km of the Camino de Santiago last year alone with thousands more walking the different Camino routes and sections across France, Portugal and Spain each year.

There are many ways to Santiago but which Camino de Santiago routes are favoured by the pilgrims? The travel specialists take a look at the top Camino routes:

French Way Camino Frances
The majority of pilgrims choose the French Way (over 68% of pilgrims arriving in Santiago), the most famous Camino route, featuring in films such as ‘The Way’ and many books. Starting in St Jean Pied de Port, at the foot of the Pyrenees, you will journey 800km across beautiful Northern Spain and discover bustling cities, charming medieval towns and lush vineyards. Reflect on your travels among the peaceful hills of rural Galicia before reaching Santiago de Compostela. The entire route takes a month to complete or two weeks if you’re cycling. If you don’t have a whole month, don’t worry, many pilgrims start in other towns along the way, the most popular being Sarria, Leon and Ponferrada.

Price: from €560 per person sharing for a 6-night Camino trip from Sarria to Santiago de Compostela.

porto-boats-portugal-camino-de-santiago-caminowaysPortuguese WayCamino Portugues
The second most popular route with pilgrims is the Portuguese Way (over 35,000 in 2014), which begins in Lisbon and takes pilgrims through colourful towns such as Coimbra, well-known for its UNESCO 13th century university, and Porto, home of delicious Port wine. This route is perfect if you are a nature lover as you’ll walk past miles of lush forests and vineyards. The most popular starting points for walkers are Porto in Portugal and Tui, in the Galician-Portuguese border. Take two weeks to walk this route from Porto and experience the best of both Portuguese and Galician cultures.

Price: from €693 per person sharing for a 7-night Camino trip from Tui to Santiago de Compostela.

Northern WayCamino del NorteNorthern Way - Section 2
The Northern Way or Camino del Norte is the third Camino route in terms of pilgrims, with 6.34% (over 15,000 in 2014) choosing this route to Santiag. Begin your trip in chic San Sebastián, famous for its abundance of Michelin star restaurants and buzzing night life. The Northern Way is primarily a coastal route taking you through picturesque fishing villages so there are plenty of opportunities to take a dip in the clear blue waters. Other stops include artistic Bilbao, unforgettable Santander and interesting seaside towns such as Ribadesella, Luarca and Ribadeo.

Price: from €632 per person sharing 6 nights from Bilbao to Santander.

lighthouse-finisterre-day-trip-camino-de-santiago-caminowaysFinisterre Way Camino de Fisterra
Join the 20,000 pilgrims that take on the Finisterre Way each year and walk to the ‘End of the World’. This route is unique as it’s the only one which begins in Santiago and covers an area steeped in history and mythical legends. Traditionally pilgrims burned their clothes and swam in the sea on completion of the Way. You can walk to Cape Fisterra and also continue to the fishing village of Muxía, following the coast.

Price: from €545 per person sharing for a 5-night Camino trip from Santiago to Cape Fisterra.

When and Price: organises guided and self-guided tours on the many routes of the Camino de Santiago, all year round. Standard packages include half-board accommodation in guesthouses and selected hotels, luggage transfer from hotel to hotel and holiday pack with pilgrim passport and practical information.

Does not include: Price does not include flights, transport or insurance.
Also available: Airport transfers and hotel upgrades in towns and cities are also available.

For more information about the different Camino de Santiago routes in France, Portugal and Spain or to book your Camino trip, contact our travel specialists.


  1. By Maria

    Hi Emma, would you like to finish in Santiago or just do a section along any of the Camino routes? November can be a bit rainy in North Spain but temperatures should be mild for walking if you’d like to do Sarria to Santiago for instance, which is the most popular section. Other routes might be warmer but too quiet this time of the year. You can click on the ‘weather’ tab on each section/route to check average temperatures and rain fall. See here for Sarria to Santiago: Let us know if you need more specific information about a route. Always happy to help!

  2. By Emma

    Hi I was looking to do a part of the Camino way in November , which route would you reccomend at this time of year for the best weather ?

  3. By Maria

    Hi Helene, it is definitely possible: it should take about 14 nights to cycle from Pamplona for instance: Let us know if you need any more details/itinerary, etc…

  4. By Helene Bestbier

    I’m interested in cycling the French Way – Camino Frances. Is that possible?

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