It’s not the moment to walk the Camino, pilgrim. And if this sanitary crisis got you in the middle of the Camino, please, go back home as soon as possible.
This is the message to all pilgrims who where walking or planning to walk the Camino de Santiago. The outbreak of Covid-19 and its quick expansion have made it mandatory to take an extraordinary measure: closing the Camino de Santiago.
Now, it’s time to stay at home, take care of ourselves and wait until the situation ends to resume our planning and go back to the Camino with even more eagerness. Meanwhile, we share the current situation and give some tips as expressed by the main jacobean agents.
Camino de Santiago’s situation
On the 14th of March, Spain activated the state of alarm for 15 days. A period of time which, likely, will be extended.
This decision implies the closure of borders and businesses, with the exception of those necessary for health reasons, such as supermarkets or pharmacies. All citizens must stay at home, of course, and not go out unless it is urgent, such as grocery shopping or going to the doctor.
This situation also affects the Camino de Santiago. All public albergues, in all Jacobean Routes, are already closed. Not only in Spain, but also in Portugal and Frances, in which the state of alarm is also activated, sharing measures with the spanish government.
The hospitaleros aren’t on the Camino, either. Nor will they be for a long time. This exact morning, the Hospitaleros Voluntarios have stated: “We have suspended our 30-year-old commitment to attend albergues and pilgrims during the first 15 days of April, when , with all certainty, the state of alarm will remain active and, therefore, the Camino will be closed. Along with it, the albergues and the freedom of circulation will be reduced”.
The Catedral de Santiago has taken preventive measures, as well. Since 12pm of the 13th of March, the Cathedral has been closed until further notice, following the sanitary instructions for avoiding the spreading of the virus. This measure comes after the first measures for lithurgic acts were established, such as not giving peace or substituting the Apostle’s hug for a bow.
The Pilgrim’s Office is also closed. The pilgrim wishing to receive a Compostela can leave their Credential in a mailbox, specifically enabled for that reason, at it will be sent to their address. Nonetheless, if there is any pilgrim in Santiago at the momento, we insist that the best is for them to go out as little as possible and to try and go back home as soon as they can.
As far as our services go, following the orders of the Real Decreto del 14 de marzo, we have suspended the rucksack transfer service on the Camino de Santiago until the end of the state of alarm. Those who have made a reservation for close dates, do not worry. You can cancel the service up to 24 hours before. In order to do that, you must send an email to email@example.com with your name and reservation code, and we will give you a refund.
Pilgrims on the Camino de Santiago
The Federación Española de Asociaciones de Amigos del Camino de Santiago has confirmed that, after these past days movements, there are no pilgrim on the Camino de Santiago. However, in case there is anyone out there, a series of information stands have been habilitated in different points of northern Spain and France.
Furthermore, the Federación, with aim to help those pilgrims in need during these first days of the state of alarm, has activated a service of refuge-albergues to go to until you are able to go home.
Also, for those pilgrim who are having difficulty going back home, the Xunta de Galicia has activated a temporary refuge service in the Monte do Gozo public albergue, in Santiago. Those who are in transit can stay there while they do not have other means to go back home or another accommodation.
Coronavirus and preventive measures
The Covid-19 or coronavirus is a virus that affects the repiratory system. It’s transmition happens similarly to a common flu: through coughing or sneezing and being in contact with saliva or mucus. The symptons are similar too: fever, coughing, sore throat and, in some cases, difficulty breathing.
The preventive measures recommended by the Ministerio de Sanidad and the World Health Organization (WHO) are:
We are living an exceptional situation. And, as so, exceptional measures have been taken. Now it is time to comply with them. Staying at home, taking care of ourselves and keeping the jacobean spirit alive. The Camino de Santiago is waiting for us. And we will be able to got back to it. ¡Buen Camino!
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¡Buen Camino! This is our wish at Correos! – that pilgrims can fully enjoy their Camino and discover new places, histories, people and experiences through our postcards.
We transfer your rucksack
So that you can travel light along the Camino de Santiago
We transfer your rucksack or suitcase from your accommodation at one stage to the next!! This way, your walk is more comfortable, your bag is lighter and you can enjoy every step of the Camino. We will take your luggage every day to your next hostel or hotel.
Bicycle transportation services
We send your bicycle to your starting or finishing point
Decide where you want to start the Camino and we will send your bicycle there from any branch of Correos. Once you finish the Camino de Santiago you can go to the nearest post office and send it back home again. Your bicycle will be insured and we package your bike without disassembling it.
For everything you want in or out of your rucksack
With our Paq Peregrino you can send suitcases or parcels to any point along the Camino (hostels, hotels, branches of Correos, etc) so that you have your personal belongings when you arrive. You can therefore have extra clothes or other items and not only the ones you carry along the Way. You can also send back whatever you have in your daily rucksack that you no longer need.
So that you have nothing to worry about other than just enjoying the Camino
Correos offers a prepaid card that is not linked to a bank account. In this way, you can defort walk the Camino without taking your credit or debit cards with you. You only have to put the money on the card that you are going to need and then top up again if your balance is low. This is a simple, safe and comfortable way of taking your money along the Camino.
Stamping Your Credential
So that you have the best stamps on your Pilgrim's Passport
Branches of Correos along the Camino de Santiago stamp your Credential or Pilgrim's Passport with our special stamps. Many of these stamps represent important tourist attractions from that particular place to help you remember your jorney.
Sending parcels along the Camino de Santiago
Send your parcels without having to go along to a branch of Correos!
You can send a parcel from any of the over one-hundred branches of CORREOS located along the Camino de Santiago and additionally from some of our “Tiendas Amigas del Camino”, a network of shops and accommodation from where you can send parcels any time of the day. This service will help you to get rid of things from your luggage that you no longer need. You can also buy souvenirs or some typical products without having to worry about carrying them with you.
Lockers in Santiago
So that you can freely visit the Cathedral or enjoy the city
Our Pilgrim's Office at Rúa do Franco, 150 metres from the Plaza del Obradoiro, has lockers. You can leave your rucksack, suitcase, bike or trekking pole before you go into the Cathedral or you can wander around Santiago without having to worry about your luggage.
To help you with anything you may need
We have over 150 branches of Correos along all the Caminos. We will be delighted to welcome you and help you with anything you need.