Walking the Camino de Santiago in Spain
HOW OPPORTUNITY WAS FOUND: Read an article in National Geographic a few years ago
LENGTH: 35 days
LOCATION: St. Jean Pied de Port, France-Santiago de Compostela, Spain
PERSONAL GROWTH: ★★★☆☆
5:00 am: wake up, pack things, eat breakfast
5:30 am: start walking
9:00 am: stop for a snack
12:00 pm: arrive at day's destination, check into albergue
1:00 pm: eat an enormous lunch
2:00 pm-5:00 pm: nap
5:00 pm-7:00pm: explore town, sit in cafes with other pilgrims and drink wine
7:30 pm-8:30 pm: eat an enormous dinner
9:00 pm: go to bed
DESCRIPTION OF WORK/ACTIVITIES DONE:
Hiking/trekking/walking 20 or so kilometers a day.
- Definitely do it!
- Go in May or September to avoid the hottest months.
- The last 100 kilometers are extremely crowded, so it might be a good idea to book albergues ahead.
- The lighter you pack, the better. You won't need a lot of what you think you will.
- Buy comfortable running shoes or trail sneakers NOT hiking boots.
- Bring a needle and threat and iodine for blisters (pop blisters with the needle, tie a knot in the blister with thread, disinfect with iodine and let heal uncovered overnight before bandaging. Do not use Compeed).
- ABSOLUTELY train fairly vigorously before attempting the Camino or you will get injured. Try walking 5-10 miles a day or going on difficult hikes
MOST MEANINGFUL LESSON TAKEN AWAY:
It is possible for my mind to be completely peaceful. Technology and social media hurt that cause, and nature and exercise and community help. Also a saying echoed by many pilgrims was "The Camino gives you what you need"--the same can be said for life. Ask for help and you will receive it!