Did you know there is one Camino walk for each pilgrim?
It is commonly said that there are as many Camino de Santiago routes, as pilgrims walking them. But, which one should you choose? Here you have the ultimate Camino walk test: answer some simple questions, add the points to get a score, and discover the best Camino de Santiago route for you.
1) Do you have any experience walking the Camino de Santiago?
A) No, this is the first time I walk the Camino, or any other walking tour ➡ 1 POINT
B) I have never walked the Camino before, but I use to go hiking ➡ 2 POINTS
C) I have been on the Camino de Santiago before, and I want to repeat the experience ➡ 3 POINTS
D) I am an experienced pilgrim, I walked the Camino and other hiking trails ➡ 4 POINTS
2. What do you expect from the Camino de Santiago walk?
A) A sociable experience, meet people from all over the world ➡ 1 POINT
B) Enjoy the experience with other pilgrims and locals, but also have some time for reflection ➡ 2 POINTS
C) Accomplish new challenges, and enjoy the beautiful landscapes of Spain ➡ 3 POINTS
D) Spirituality: get away from the routine, walk in peace and solitude ➡ 4 POINTS
3. When you travel, what do you really enjoy?
A) Discovering the most popular spots of each place. I usually check on the Internet the “must see” ➡ 1 POINT
B) A combination of gastronomy, landscapes, and local traditions ➡ 2 POINTS
C) Being impressed by the power of nature, particularly the sea ➡ 3 POINTS
D) Getting to know those places off the track, and discover hidden corners on the way ➡ 4 POINTS
4. What kind of walking days would you like to enjoy on the Camino?
A) I would like to walk at my own speed. Have time to rest, stop to visit nice spots on the way, take pictures and talk to other pilgrims ➡ 1 POINT
B) A physical challenge is not the most important thing for me, I am ready for them but I appreciate other aspects such as landscapes or gastronomy ➡ 2 POINTS
C) I would like some physical challenges, but also stop and enjoy the beauty of nature ➡ 3 POINTS
D) I am looking for a great challenge, away from the crowds, to find my own limits ➡ 4 POINTS
The Best Camino Walk for each pilgrim:
From 4 to 7 points – The French Way or Camino Francés
You are beginner on the Camino walk and, as such, we recommend you to start with the French Way (or Camino Francés in Spanish). The starting point of the Full French Way is St-Jean-Pied-de-Port, in France. But there is no need to walk 800 km. In fact, most of the pilgrims walk the last 100 km of the French Way (from Sarria to Santiago). As this is the most popular route of the Camino walk, there are many indications, facilities and accommodations along the way.
If you feel distances are too long, we can split walking days in two (see the Easy French Way Tour). You will also be able to stop on the way, get a coffee, get something to eat… and you will never get lost! The trail is full of milestones, indications and yellow arrows. 60% of the Compostelas (Pilgrim Certifate) issued in 2017, were given to pilgrims that walked the French Way.
If you really enjoy meeting people from all over the world… the French Way is definitely your choice!
From 8 to 10 points – The Portuguese Way or Camino Portugués
The Portuguese Way (or Camino Portugués) is the second most popular Camino walk. Even though it starts in Lisbon, capital city of Portugal, its last 100 km (the stretch chosen by most of the pilgrims) are in Galicia: from Tui to Santiago. Last year, in 2017, almost 60.000 pilgrims arrived in Santiago de Compostela using this route of the Camino.
The route is becoming very popular (of course it is not as well known as the French Way) and it offers really nice views of the sea in some stretches. If you are one of those walkers who really enjoy sea views, there is an alternative to the traditional Portuguese Way, that is called the Portuguese Coastal Way (or Camino Portugués de la Costa).
This walk is not particularly challenging compared to other Caminos, that are full of slopes and ups and downs. It is also very well marked, and it is a great alternative for those who want to meet other fellow pilgrims on the way, but also have some moments of solitude for reflection.
From 11 to 14 points – The Northern Way or Camino del Norte
The Northern Way (Camino del Norte) is considered to be one of the most beautiful Camino walks. However, the route is quite demanding, that is why we usually recommend it to experienced walkers.
This trail strongly recommended to those pilgrims who:
-Are used to hike long walks, for many days in a row.
-Do not feel intimidated by slopes and hills.
-Enjoy a quiet walk, away from the crowds, with amazing sea views.
From 15 to 16 points – The Primitive Way
Did you know that the Primitive Way (also known as Camino Primitivo, or Original Way) is the oldest route of the Camino de Santiago? It is also considered to be the most spiritual one.
If you are one of those pilgrims who perceive the Camino de Santiago walk as an spiritual route, conceived for self-awareness and reflection, the Camino Primitivo is your choice.
Almost 14000 pilgrims walked the Primitive Way in 2017 (4,55% of the total). This Camino walk will take pilgrims to the heart of Asturias and Galicia region, to the greener part of Spain. It is considered to be a minor route in terms of number of pilgrims, peaceful, but with amazing landscapes (not so easy to forget!).
Have you heard of a different Camino de Santiago route, that you want to walk? Of course, there is even more! There are other Camino de Santiago trails that we did not mention in this article, like the Finisterre Way (Camino de Finisterre), the English Way (Camino Inglés), the Winter Way (Camino de Invierno)… as we were saying at the beginning of this post, there is one Camino walk for each pilgrim!
If you want more information about any of the Camino walks, do not hesitate to contact us and a member of the team will get back to you in less than 24 hours.