The normal thing when we travel to any place, whether abroad or in our own country, is to worry about our safety and to know the levels of danger that exist in each place in order to take the necessary precautions. In the case of the Camino de Santiago, security is also a factor that concerns pilgrims, especially those who have never visited Spain.

Every year more than 300,000 pilgrims from all over the world walk the Camino de Santiago, and most of them come during the summer months. It is therefore normal for incidents to occur from time to time. However, if you have never visited Spain, you should know that like many other countries in Europe, it is among the safest countries in the world to travel to safest countries in the world to travel to.

Since 2015, the Government of Spain the Xunta de Galicia and the Galician Provincial Councils have been working together to create a Road Safety Commission for the Pilgrims’ Route to Santiago. This commission aims to ensure the tranquility of the pilgrimage in the nine routes that reach Santiago de Compostela.

On the other hand, the Guardia Civil and the Police have special surveillance devices on the Camino throughout the year. In summer it is common to find the Cavalry Unit of the Guardia Civil in the less accessible areas of the Camino.

Cavalry Unit Camino de Santiago

National Campaign for Prevention and Safety on the Pilgrims’ Route to Santiago de Compostela

The Civil Guard has developed a National Prevention and Security Campaign aimed at pilgrims who make the Camino de Santiago between 2020 and 2021.

The state security forces have made available to citizens the following Decalogue of good practices that will reinforce your own safety on the Camino de Santiago.

● Alertcops at your side

The free app of the Guardia Civil and the Cuerpo Nacional de Policía. It has multiple utilities and you can communicate any alert or emergency from your mobile device in real time. Your position is automatically sent to the police operational centers and you will be quickly located and attended to.

You can download the Alertcops app here:

● Always be identified

Carry your ID card or passport and show it at the request of the competent authority, in case you are asked to do so.

● Keep an eye on your belongings

Especially personal belongings, electronic devices (mobile phone, tablet, computer, camera), documentation, money and objects of special value. Especially in unsupervised places, transit areas or places with a large number of people. Don’t display them unnecessarily. Travel light. Don’t carry large amounts of cash and divide it between your gear and your regular clothes, in hard-to-reach places like inside pockets. Write down the PIN, PUK and IMEI security codes of your mobile phone.

● Best in company and in the daytime

The experience will be even more unforgettable if you share it on the road. Avoid walking alone (especially if you are older) and, if possible, between November and March. Try to travel during daylight hours and rest or make cultural visits on days with unfavourable weather conditions.

● Let your step leave no trace

It respects the environment, something invaluable and irreplaceable. Use the facilities for the deposit of garbage, refuse and other waste. Do not collect living beings (flora, fauna) or landscape elements. Camp in authorized and authorized areas. Do not make inscriptions, marks or graffiti on stones, trees, milestones, information signs or any other natural or signposting element. Do not light fires in the bush, do not throw cigarette butts indiscriminately and be alert if you observe any risky situation or an outbreak of fire. Respect private property and the neighbors and locals, not altering their daily way of life. Be courteous to other pilgrims as well.

● Be wary of strangers

Especially if they get too close with any excuse (like asking a question or offering to help you carry your belongings) or if they bump into you by accident. Don’t trust anyone who recommends shortcuts, points of interest or off-route services.

● As if it were your home

Take care of the common facilities (shelters, information points, rest and refreshment places), milestones, fountains, signs, information panels and other directional signposts. Leave everything as you found it: those who follow you will be grateful.

● Preserves the historical-artistic heritage

It belongs to everyone. Whatever their location or relevance. It helps to pass on the heritage of the past and present to future generations. Report to the authorities if you observe any damage or intent to commit damage. Do not inflict any harm or plunder this common wealth.

● Follow the yellow sign, respect the rules of the road and make yourself seen.

The shell, the star or the arrow will show you the Way to follow. Don’t venture out on different, remote or unmarked trails or shortcuts. Neither by PRs or GRs. If you use conventional roads, respect the road rules, take extreme precautions and make yourself visible at all times by means of reflective or eye-catching clothing. Always walk on marked footpaths; if you walk on the hard shoulder, walk on your left and in single file. Do not cross a road on a curve or at an incline without visibility. If you ride a bike or a horse, ride on the shoulder or as close to the right as possible, wear a helmet and do not ride in a pack.

Do they know where you are?

Let your family and friends know where you are on a regular basis. Always carry a mobile communication device – with enough battery – that allows you to be located and with which you can alert of any emergency of your own or others. You can use a tracking and geolocation device, such as those available for hikers or the Guardian of the ALERTCOPS app.

● Protect your home while you’re away

Do not inform strangers or in public places of your intention to do El Camino. Nor during the realization of this through social networks.

● What a great plan!

Plan your route well in advance and leave as little to chance as possible: from the weather forecast to the accommodation network, reservations, authorisations, distances, difficulty, resting places, refreshments and places of interest.

● Measure your strength and avoid overdoing it.

Be aware of your possibilities, state of health and physical condition. Eat properly and stop walking when you feel that your strength is failing. Don’t take risks or subject yourself to overexertion, risky practices or drug use. Do not abuse alcohol intake either.

In case of an emergency or suspicion, call

As a victim, injured party or witness, alert the universal number (health emergency, fire brigade, public safety 112) or the security forces: Guardia CIVIL (062), Cuerpo Nacional de Policía (091), Policía Local (092). They are free of charge.

Guardia Civil with the pilgrims

Solicita tu presupuesto para el Camino de Santiago