How long is the Camino de Santiago? It is one of the most typical questions among pilgrims. If you want to know how many days it takes to walk the St James Way, you must bear in mind different factors. For example, which Camino de Santiago route will you choose? Where do you want to start? How many day do you have available to walk the Saint James Way? Would you like to get your Compostela (Pilgrim Certificate)? If you have also asked yourself these questions, keep reading to get an idea of how long it can take to walk the Camino depending on the route you choose.
How long does it take to walk the Camino de Santiago?
- 1 How long does it take to walk the Camino de Santiago?
- 2 The most popular Camino de Santiago routes: distances & stages
- 2.1 The French Way Camino de Santiago itinerary
- 2.2 The Portuguese Way Camino de Santiago itinerary
- 2.3 The Portuguese Coastal Way Camino de Santiago itinerary
- 2.4 The English Way Camino de Santiago itinerary
- 2.5 The Northern Way Camino de Santiago itinerary
- 2.6 The Primitive Way Camino de Santiago itinerary
- 2.7 The Winter Way Camino de Santiago itinerary
- 2.8 The Via dela Plata Camino de Santiago itinerary
- 3 How can I get the Pilgrim Certificate (Compostela)?
- 4 How many kilometres should I walk each day?
Certainly, this is a really open question, since there are different Jacobean routes leading to Santiago de Compostela. For this reason, we cannot give a single answer to this question, because it would depends on your specific physical condition. Also, you have to consider how many days you have at your disposal to walk the route you are interested in.
It’s a fact that every year, thousands of pilgrims from all over the world, walk these routes at their own speed, and choosing different starting points. That’s the reason why, today we would like to clear all doubts you could have about how much time should be devoted to walking the Camino de Santiago, having these factors into account.
The most popular Camino de Santiago routes: distances & stages
As you know, there are meaning different Camino de Santiago routes leading to Santiago de Compostela. Let’s see how long does it take to walk the most popular Camino de Santiago routes.
The French Way Camino de Santiago itinerary
Let’s start with the most popular and well known Camino de Santiago route: the French Camino or French Way.
How long does it take to walk the Full French Way?
The most popular Camino de Santiago route, is the French Way (or Camino Francés) and the starting point is the French village called St-Jean-Pied-de-Port. It is located right in the Pyrenees mountains, right in the border with Spain. On the whole, to get from there to Santiago de Compostela, we recommend to dedicate at least 35 walking days. Also, considering the route can be quite demanding, we also recommend to add some extra nights during the walk, to allow you to rest.
Indeed, this is not only a good thing to get some rest, but also to get to know some of the most interesting towns of Northern Spain, such as Pamplona, Logroño, Burgos or León.
How long does it take to walk the last 100 km of the French Way: from Sarria to Santiago?
When we talk about the last 100 km of the French Way, the starting point in this case would be Sarria (that is the reason why the number of pilgrims on route increases from this point). Undoubtedly, this is the most popular among pilgrims who have only one week available to walk the Camino de Santiago.
In the report on the statistics prepared by the Pilgrim’s Office of Santiago de Compostela it turns out that in 2018 this Way was travelled by 88509 people (or 27.04% of the total number of pilgrims who asked for Compostela). What is very significant is that in 2016 there were 71766 (almost 16800 more people in this stretch in just two years!)
After your arrival in Sarria, you will have to walk around 20 km per day, following these stages:
The Portuguese Way Camino de Santiago itinerary
The Portuguese Way is the second most popular Camino de Santiago route in number of pilgrims. Let’s find out how long it takes to walk the different sections of this Camino de Santiago route.
How long does it take to walk the Full Portuguese Way?
If we refer to the Full Portuguese Way, we must also dedicate, at least, 1 month to reach Santiago de Compostela. Pilgrims who want to start in Lisbon (starting point of the Portuguese Way) would need to walk almost 600 km. While the Portuguese Way from Lisbon registered only 2518 pilgrims in 2018, the one from Porto (230 KM) is much more popular with a total number of 26839 pilgrims.
The Portuguese Way from Porto to Santiago de Compostela
The Portuguese Way from Porto, is the third classified in the list of the most chosen Caminos (after the French Way from Sarria and the Complete French Way) and is undoubtedly one of the fastest growing paths. If in 2017 there were 22,335 (7.42% of the total) of pilgrims who had started in Porto, in 2018 there were 26839 (8.20% of the total). 4500 more pilgrims in a year is not bad at all! If you choose this Way you will have to walk 230 km, in 12 days.
Here are the stages you will have to follow if you want to walk this section of the Portuguese Camino:
How long does it take to walk the last 100 km of the Portuguese Way: from Tui to Santiago?
If you choose the Portuguese Way from Tui remember that this is the second most popular route for pilgrims each year, after the French Way. You’ll love walking through the woods, discovering small rural villages and crossing medieval bridges. If you want to know how long it will take you to walk this itinerary of the St James Way, here you will find your stages!
While in 2016 the number of pilgrims making the Way from Tui was 15,158 in 2018, it was 21,308.
Please see below the stages of this 110 km route that can be done in 6 days only:
The Portuguese Coastal Way Camino de Santiago itinerary
How long does it take to walk the Portuguese Coastal Way from Porto?
If you want to walk the Portuguese Coastal Way from Porto (UNESCO Heritage Site) you will not only discover the beautiful villages of northern Portugal and Spain but you will also always have the wonderful Atlantic coast in sight.
These are the stages of the Portuguese itinerary of the Coast from the city of Porto, 240 km long:
How long does it take to walk the last section of the Portuguese Coastal Way?
If you want to have spectacular views of the Atlantic Ocean and the Rías Baixas, then the Coastal Route from Baiona is undoubtedly the route for you. Please note that if you want to walk the last 100 km only, you can start in Vigo. However, most of the pilgrims covering this section, prefer to start on the stop right before: Baiona.
Discover the stages of this 125 km itinerary that will take you a week to cover.
The English Way Camino de Santiago itinerary
How long is the Camino Inglés?
Regarding the English Way, or Camino Inglés, the starting point of the whole route is the same as the last 100 km: the city of Ferrol (it is a short route).
If you have any doubts about the starting point for the last 100 km of the route you want to walk, please do not hesitate to contact us.
The Northern Way Camino de Santiago itinerary
How long is the full Camino del Norte?
If we speak of the Full Northern Way, or Camino del Norte, taking Irún as a starting point, we will have to walk 830 km approximately until arriving at the finish line.
This wonderful way will allow you to know the natural beauties of the north of Spain although it represents a physical challenge for those who want to follow it. You can see here the different stages with the specific km of each of the 36 days of the way.
How long does it take to walk the last 100 km of the Northern Way (from Vilalba)?
For those who have only one week we recommend doing the Northern Way from Vilalba (a total of 120 km in six days) with the following stages:
This itinerary meets the French Way in Arzúa (40 km away from Santiago) and therefore if you choose this route you will find many more pilgrims at the end of your Camino.
The Primitive Way Camino de Santiago itinerary
How long is the Camino Primitivo?
This route, also known as the Original Way, starts in Oviedo to join the French Way in Melide (50 km away from Santiago). Its 320 km can be completed in 14 days with an average of 23 km/day. It is the same route that Alfonso II the Chaste decided to take in the 9th century to visit the newly discovered tomb of the Apostle Santiago.
Nowadays, there are many who consider that this road is the one that makes you live the meaning of the Way of St. James, the others being many more traveled and overcrowded.
A deep immersion in the nature of Asturias and its beautiful green valleys to discover the authentic Way of Saint James. The stages from Oviedo are as follows:
How long does it take to walk the last 100 km of the Primitive Way, from Lugo?
If you want to do the Primitive Way (or Camino Primitivo) but only have one week you can choose the Primitive Way from Lugo. 5 days will be the time it will take you to walk the 100 km of this St James Way until Santiago .The number of pilgrims who chose the Primitive Way in 2018 was 4,,059.
Even though this is a little less popular than the previous ones, is t just as spectacular. If you still don’t know the city of Lugo, it has one of the best preserved Roman Walls in the world. It was recognized in 2000 as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Walking along its more than 2 km in length you can relive the Roman past of this national monument. These are the stages from Lugo, as you will see they are not too hard (3 of 5 stages are less than 20 km):
The Winter Way Camino de Santiago itinerary
How long is the Camino de Invierno?
Do you like vineyards, unique landscapes and want to enjoy incredible autumn colors? The Winter Way Full is the route for you, and you will be able to enjoy it all year round, not just in winter.
As well as getting to know the Médulas area in León (a UNESCO heritage site), you can also visit the Ribeira Sacra vineyards and their canyons, an authentic marvel!
It is possible to make the complete journey from Ponferrada completing its 268 km in 11 days:
How long does it take to walk the last 100 km of the Winter Way, from Monforte?
If you only have few days available and you want to live the St James Way through the vineyards of the Ribeira Sacra you will have to start in Monforte de Lemos, the landscapes and canyons of these lands will leave you speechless!
The stages for the last 138 km of the Winter Way are as follows:
The Via dela Plata Camino de Santiago itinerary
How long does it take to walk the full Via de la Plata?
The Mozarabic Way or Via de La Plata Full Way is the longest of all and the Way with more contrasts. Here we see the strong influence between the Arab-Muslim past of the south and the strong Christian-Catholic presence. The whole Camino (1000 km) will take you approx. 50 days, starting in the wonderful Seville.
In addition to the Roman monuments you can visit some cities that are part of UNESCO World Heritage such as Merida, Cáceres and Salamanca.
Those who want to complete the 1000 km from the beginning (Seville), will join the pilgrims of the French Way in Astorga to continue all together towards Santiago. This is undoubtedly the most important route linking southern Spain to Santiago.
How long does it take to walk the last 100 km of the Via de la Plata?
Those who opt for the Via de la Plata to walk only the last 114 km kilometers in 6 days should start in Ourense. This beautiful Way will allow you to enjoy the rural areas of the north of Galicia in a calm route and in full nature.
The stages of La Via de la Plata, last 100 km are as follows
How can I get the Pilgrim Certificate (Compostela)?
Firstly, we want to remember you that to get the Pilgrim Certificate (Compostela) you will need to walk at least the last 100 km of any of the official routes of the Camino de Santiago or 200 km by bike.
Although it is true that you will go faster by bike, you must be well trained and have basic knowledge of bicycle repair before starting this adventure! If you choose to walk the St James Way with Galiwonders, we will send you the pilgrim passport at home and then you will be able to ask for the stamps along the way. Once you arrive to Santiago de Compostela, you can ask at the Pilgrim’s Office your certificate.
How many kilometres should I walk each day?
Generally speaking, the average number of kilometres that a standard pilgrim can walk each day, is about 20 km. For this reason, walking the last 100 km of any of the routes, should take about 5 or 6 walking days.
Moreover, most of the stretches can be split in two, and even three walking days. Therefore, there is an Easy Camino de Santiago, and if you choose this option, getting from Sarria to Santiago would take 10 walking days. Again, if you are walking any of the longest routes such as the French Way, we always recommend to add some resting days in between. This way you will avoid injuries, and will allow your body to get some rest.
To conclude, we can say that in order to know how long it takes to do the Way of St. James you have to consider many factors. First you have to choose which route you are most interested in between the Pilgrim’s Roads to Santiago.Second, based on your route you will be able to choose whether to do all the way, part of it or just the last 100 km (minimum requirement to get the Compostela).
Finally, considering the daily average you will be able to calculate your rhythms, based on your physical condition, during the Way. If you’re still not sure which Way to choose, here below you’ll see the most popular trails from last year.
If you are interested in knowing more about how long the Camino de Santiago is, and you would like more information about it, please do not hesitate to contact us on the form below.
Enjoy the Camino!