Every Pilgrim has a story.

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Read the stories
Maria, Australia

“…after being at home for a week, one day I thought to myself, ‘what am I doing here? I’d rather be walking!’ And now, I’m constantly thinking of when my next walk will be.”

Jessica, Canada

“I came to understand that you can’t spend your life planning ahead, because you will miss the true beauty that each day has to offer.”

Dorothy / “Little Chicago,” USA

“They called me ‘Little Chicago’ (that’s where I’m from), and decided to ‘take me under their wing.’”

Tylerann, USA

“When we finally bought plane tickets in February 2014, that’s when we knew the Camino was really going to happen.”

Marcela, Colombia

“I thought about how often we complain to God about all kinds of little problems, and how we so often think life is unfair. And then I remembered that during this entire trip we never once lacked food. In my life thus far, I had accomplished all that I wanted to. God gives us gifts that we don’t always see.”

Nilanj / “Señor Vino,” USA (2014)

“These things, these daily adventures, these constant little joys, helped me realize again that ‘life’ is much more than our work lives.”

“The Pug & Cat Pilgrims,” UK/Norway

“So when we decided to go on a Camino to jump-start this change in our lives, we also insisted that we become the first pilgrims ever on the Camino de Santiago to bring a pug and cat along for the journey!”

John, USA

“You find your true self when you peel back the onion of routine and normalcy. The Camino gave me that chance.”

Nerida, Australia

“And for some unexplained reason, I became obsessed with the pilgrimage. I don’t know why! I had never traveled out of Australia, but I felt like it was calling me. Truly, a seed had been planted.”

Nilanj, USA (2017)
“The Walking Woman,” USA

“The experience of my trek was completely and utterly joyful. It reaffirmed my belief, an unquestioning understanding that the Universe will conspire on my behalf if I just flow with it… if I simply let it.”

Jason, USA

“I made a great number of steps to becoming a better person out there and it was my first solo travel experience. I learned that I’m a great deal stronger than I thought, and that just about anything can be accomplished if you just keep trying.”

Pete / “Pedro,” Australia

“…the Camino definitely helped change me. I found a way to solve little problems, to do things differently, and to not do the easiest thing in front of me. I changed, and maybe I can’t explain exactly how. But I didn’t show up thinking about how I needed or wanted to change.”

Grace, USA

“…now I’m a fanatic about walking 12,000 steps per day (per my FitBit), I only buy Rioja Reserve red wine, and I love to wear the clothes I wore on the Camino because they bring back such happy memories.”

Greg, USA

“I wanted to prove to myself that I could reach Santiago, even if I had to crawl there!”

Keith, USA

“I literally think about the Camino every day. It was easily the most crazy and adventurous thing I’ve ever done by myself. But the word “myself” is misleading – you’re never alone on the Camino.”

David, USA (2014)

“Every day was fundamentally the same, but also truly unique. That is what I loved the most.”

Elena, Canada

“We have a choice every day – often on the Camino my feet hurt and my body was tired … each day I told myself to ‘choose’ to focus on the beautiful scenery around me, the amazing sunsets, the incredible people I met … and the little surprise joys that each day brought.”

Kelli, USA

“I came and did what I was supposed to do: recalibrated mind, body and spirit. I am a stronger, more centered me for having hiked the Camino.”

“The Travel Whisperer,” Australia

“I actually think my first Camino in Spain would make a fantastic sitcom. The further in the past it goes, the more I am able to laugh about it. But you know what? It taught me a lot, and I still love the Camino.”

“More Blissful, Less Ignorant” Chuck, USA (2014)

“If my 2012 Camino was more of an introspective journey, this was more of a social one, shared with and cherished because of my companions. Who’s coming for the May 2016 reunion?”

Elliott, Wales

“So I quit my job, sold everything but the most dear possessions, left my flat, ended my relationship and stepped onto the Way.”

Edna & David, Canada

“Our lives back home in Calgary consist of us both working full time jobs, commuting through city traffic, and trying to balance life at the end of the day. Our lives on the Camino were balanced every day because of the simplicity.”

Phil & Cathy, USA

“The beauty of the Camino is the ‘sameness in the uniqueness’ of each day … There is a great leveling among pilgrims.”

Larry, Australia

“…one thing I found really remarkable about the Camino was how both I and my wife were just so doubtful about being able to finish the entire trip, and in the end, coping through all those challenges to complete it. Because of that, I have spent two years encouraging others to do the Camino.”

Adam, UK

“It is said the real Camino begins the moment you finish your Camino journey in Santiago de Compostela. I committed to myself in Santiago to begin my own transformation journey to create and live a life of fulfillment.”

Eva, Canada

“I think it’s in the nothingness that I found everything. I needed the shooting pain in my feet to remind me that I was alive.”

Andrew “Beyond the Way,” Australia

“The Camino has continued to shake and affect my world in the two years since I walked into Santiago. This isn’t to say that I had a religious experience, but I have had multiple experiences of faith… following faith. It was my intention when I started in May 2014 to surrender to faith and accept whatever came.”

Justin, Australia

“There was this one guy we saw several times who just LOVED going to the bathroom out in the open. It seemed like every time we passed a perfect photo spot, this guy was standing with his legs spread wide and a huge smile, just peeing away. We never actually met the guy – that might have been a weird conversation to start up!”

“Chef” John, Australia

“We noticed an elderly French pilgrim eating a large watermelon. That was going to be his dinner. I offered the Frenchman a plate of pasta, and a plate of salad. In return he shared his watermelon. I could not find a corkscrew for the wine; he had one. We shared the bottle: long live the United Nations of pilgrims! He thanked me profusely, and I thanked him. Respect, and the desire to share, makes the world go round.”

James “Jimmy” Hart, USA

“The camaraderie, generosity, and unconditional support that James witnessed daily touched him deeply. He found that everyone had a story and a reason for walking the Camino, but that the sameness of their path brought them all together.”

Doug & Amy, USA

“We wanted to jump in the ocean at ‘earth’s end’ to seek the power of the setting sun.”

David, Spain

“Being from Spain, the fact that I lived no more than 4 hours by car to my home could make the arrival to Roncesvalles a bit less exciting than it would be for people coming from around the world. However, I remember feeling a strange connection with everything the moment I got off the bus.”

Mel, USA

“I eventually fell into a rhythm with a group of people who who walked my same pace and distance. And we talked. We shared. A common first question was ‘why are you doing this?’ Like snowflakes, the reasons were unique and beautiful.”

Family Silas, Finland (2014)

“We learned a lot about ourselves and about us as a family. It was an experience that we could never have really understood before we started the journey. Now we are sure that this Camino was our first, but not our last…”

Steve, USA

“There’s a rhythm to the walk, a rhythm that goes beyond the crunch of boots on gravel. A rhythm that is more than the swinging of arms or the steamy puffs of visible breath on the coldest mornings or the pulsing stride of thousands of pilgrims along the road.”

Shanti, New Zealand

“Don’t get me wrong – reaching the Cruz de Ferro and spotting the Cathedral de Santiago for the first time were numinous, reflective moments that felt bloody amazing. But for me, the Camino was rather slow burn of comprehension that if I can walk across a country on my own two feet carrying everything I needed, I can do anything I want.”

Dermot, Ireland

“By March 2010, I had become heavy, something I only fully realised by chance. My Nephew and his Girlfriend came to visit me. I took photographs of them, and they took photographs of me. A few days after they left, I put the memory card into the computer. They looked great, but then I saw a fat man with my face looking at me from the computer screen. Something needed to be done and rapidly.”

Eva, USA

“We are all on the Camino together, we all have the same goal, but we have different ways of getting there.”

David, USA (2017)

If my first Camino was one of self discovery, my second Camino would be one of celebration of everything I had been able to accomplish since then. It was long, and at times a grueling journey, but it was just as memorable as the first.

Julie, Canada

“After a sad season and slow healing process, a piece of my spirit has reawakened in me – the piece that rallies fellow pilgrims to jump in the river with me after a sweltering day of hiking; the piece that picks flowers every day and tucks them into my skirt; the piece that wants to discover and know other’s stories; the piece that feels ALIVE.”

Jan, USA

“I was blessed that each day allowed me to expand spiritually – even in the airports before I began the walk! At other times, I was blessed that while walking alone, I could feel I was walking with God. I am longing to go back.”

Paul, USA

The Camino de Santiago was more than that for which I had prayed. I am so thankful for the time God allowed for me to take this journey of heart, soul and mind. I walked alone and you should too. But you’re never really alone.

Joshua, USA

“Many people have amazing stories and incredible memories from their Camino. I don’t want to minimize anyone’s experience because they are all truly special… but my experience was a step beyond.”

Marc, USA

“The Plaza del Grano brought me images of thousands, maybe millions, of citizens and pilgrims doing their thing for hundreds of years before me. I felt a part of that plaza like few other places along the Camino.”

Simone, Italy

“Getting up each morning with the slow and gradual awakening of nature, and the genuineness in the eyes of fellow pilgrims made me understand that the beauty of the Camino is in the simple things that make you feel at one with what is around you.”

Family Silas, Finland (2015)

“In so many ways, this Camino was different than the one we did before, but it had a lot the same, too. The one thing that doesn’t changes is how deep and memorable an experience it is. One day, if we are able, we will return to the Path. As a family, of course!”

Angela, England

“There was something surreal about walking the ancient route. Removed from the familiarity of everyday life people sometimes walked alongside others telling their stories and explaining their very personal reasons for doing the pilgrimage.. We heard stories of heartache, loneliness illness and loss.”

Miesung, Korea

“People listened to my story and shared their own wisdom, all of them strangers, from all over the world. They asked for nothing but happily shared their stories and showed sympathy from bottom of their hearts.”

Steven, USA

“The shell that accompanied me all along The Way is on a decorative stake just in front of my wife’s gravestone, one last way to honor her memory.”

Brien, USA

“The young man made the short walk over to my location near the cistern and said, ‘What is the second thing the pilgrim needs?’ I sat silently, having no idea, so he said, ‘Patience. You must have patience.’ Then he spun the wheel a bit more and voila, water appeared, flowing from a pipe near the large wheel.”

Carlos, Spain

“‘Milestones’ like ‘the next day,’ or ‘the next coffee shop’ were what gave me the strength to go on. In this way, the Camino puts you in ‘can-do’ mode, even though it’s so long and difficult.”

Xina, USA

“I decided to go because I felt called by something greater than me. I answered the call … Adventurers and pilgrims alike have heard it. And so have farmers and peasants and factory workers. Some listen. Some go … I am one of these.”

Amy “BrassKnichols,” USA

“Listen. Everyone had some big, monumental, life-changing reason for going on the Camino. I met people who wanted to figure out their life, get over some traumatic past event, or maybe grow as a person. Not me. I just literally had no place else to be.”

Clare, USA

“One peregrino named Mike even shared a little prayer of healing over my family. It was a small moment of compassion that still moved and consoled us. We never saw Mike or his family again after that encounter, but I will always be grateful for their kindness.”

Kirby, USA

“Little things like this on so many days made me think that the Big Man upstairs was looking out for me during my Camino. It doesn’t have to be miracles. Sometimes, those little things remind you to count your blessings.”

“Blissfully Ignorant” Chuck, USA (2012)

“I’ve been asked if my pilgrimage was a transforming experience. I’m not sure that I can answer that in fewer than 36,836 words.”

Annie, USA

“Then I’d get frustrated, because I stopped focusing on the journey and got too caught up in the destination. I came to realize that when we do that, we risk losing the journey altogether, and then we start wonder why we are even walking in the first place! Like so much of the rest of life, we must keep the balance.”

Desi, Australia

“The Camino is truly a wonderful experience. It’s life changing. The people you meet can become great friends. When I talk to them, it brings up these feelings. I guess you could say it’s the sense of accomplishing something together. But, it’s much more than that.”

Greg, USA

“Months after I left Spain, I think about the Camino almost every day and it is calling me back.”

Camino Memories and Camino stories from people around the world sharing their Camino experiences on the Way of St. James. Personal Camino Stories from the Camino de Santiago. Personal Camino Stories of adventure, faith exploration, generosity, and more.

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