Nowadays, pilgrims travel by means of transport to a starting point of the Camino and start walking, but the idea of making a pilgrimage from home is very nice. Obviously, with today’s lifestyle and short holiday periods, few can do it, those fortunate enough to live within walking distance of Santiago de Compostela in a few days. However, there is an alternative that would allow you to do the whole Camino de Santiago from your home or from a distant point, and that is to do it in single stages, perhaps monthly, taking advantage of the weekends, or perhaps annually, taking advantage of the holidays.
Advantages of doing the Camino in single stages
First of all, what I said: you can complete a long walk, even from home, at different times of the year or even in different years. If you are interested in this option, don’t worry, the Pilgrim’s Credential does not expire, and you can do the Camino by individual stages without any problem. Of course, the stamps and dates must be in order, as well as the realization of loose stages: do not make “flashbacks” or “flashforwards”, it is not a Hollywood movie. And if you run out of stamping space, you can use a second Credential.
Not only that: maybe you are interested in doing the Camino in a group, with friends and family, but the schedules of each one do not coincide. For this reason, doing a long Camino in single stages is the perfect solution for this circumstance, as you will be able to organize your free time in advance.
By doing different parts of the Camino separated in time, you will have more time to organize the stages, reflect on those you have already done and even learn from the mistakes you made in previous sections (use of bad shoes, lack of certain material, etc.). In addition, by doing the Camino in single stages you will meet new people on each stretch you do.
The French Way
Many pilgrims, for example, decide to do the entire French Way within the Iberian Peninsula, generally from Roncesvalles or even Somport (the so-called Camino Aragonés): almost 800 kilometers from Roncesvalles, in about 33 stagesand about 960 kilometers from Somport, about 39 stages, so you would need at least between 30 and 40 days to complete it, depending on the personal division of stages and if you do it on foot or by bicycle or even on horseback.
The Portuguese Way
This is another route whose beginning is far from Santiago: Lisbon is about 620 kilometers from Santiago de Compostela, with an ordinary division of about 27 stages. The main attraction of this route is that it runs largely through neighbouring Portugal, a country whose gastronomy and landscapes will be new to you. If you are interested in this path, as always,wewe can help you.
The Silver Route
Some 950 kilometers and 38 stages separate Seville from Santiago de Compostela, linking in Astorga with the French Way, although there is also the variant of the Sanabrés Way. If you are from Seville and you want to get to Santiago de Compostela, you can do this route in one go, or separate it into individual stages. Consult herehow we can help you.
The North Road
Approximately 860 kilometres in 36 stages separate Irún from Santiago de Compostela, walking parallel to the Cantabrian Sea in a very interesting way, because of its proximity to the sea you will be able to enjoy inland and coastal landscapes, with the wonderful Cantabrian beaches. As with the Vía de la Plata, it links in Arzúa with the French Way. We have already prepared many sections for you, check them out here.
The rest of Caminos
There are even more routes, but not as long, and although they can also be done in single stages, their distance is affordable to do them on your holidays. The English Waywith its 113 kilometers in 6 stages, is very affordable. The same is true for the Way of Finisterre and Muxía, which with its 120 kilometres in 5 stages can be done perfectly on a holiday. The Primitive Way is a bit longer, but with its 320 kilometres and its 14 stages (it also links with the French Way in Melide), you could do it in two weeks.
We have always referred to doing the Camino on foot, but by bike you could do a long Camino in much less days. Keep in mind that with two wheels you can easily double or triple the distance covered by a pilgrim on foot and thus reduce the time to complete your adventure. If you prefer this option, we can also help you. What’s more, if you want your best four-legged friend to accompany you, we can help you too!
However you walk to Santiago de Compostela, the important thing is to enjoy the Camino, without rushing, leaving time to reflect on what you have learned and enjoy the experience. It is a very profitable investment of time psychologically, emotionally and spiritually, so think very well how you want to do it. As a last piece of advice, if you want to do one day a great route and you are a novice, try to do the last 100 kilometers of one of the routes, to know well what you will face in a long adventure.
You could organize yourself every month or every year to do some stages. The most common option is to do it annually, covering 100 to 200 kilometers each year, starting each year where you left off the previous year. As experts in the Camino de Santiago, we can help you in the organization of this experience and customize your routes: you put the legs, we think the rest: our mission is to make your Camino easier.