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

FUN: ★★★★★

PERSONAL GROWTH: ★★★☆☆

DAY-TO-DAY LIFE:

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.

TOP TIPS: 

  1. Definitely do it!
  2. Go in May or September to avoid the hottest months.
  3. The last 100 kilometers are extremely crowded, so it might be a good idea to book albergues ahead.
  4. The lighter you pack, the better. You won't need a lot of what you think you will.
  5. Buy comfortable running shoes or trail sneakers NOT hiking boots.
  6. 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).
  7. 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!

 

 

Jiyoung Jeong