Culture & Traditions of the Camino
Hundreds of kilometres stretching out ahead, an unforgettable experience, incredible landscapes, friendships for life... The Camino de Santiago is a unique experience.
Values such as hospitality, brotherhood (or sisterhood), solidarity, spirituality, or simply finding and listening to oneself leave a permanent impression on the pilgrim. But the Camino can also draw out other, artistic qualities that we carry inside ourselves.
Who hasn't returned home with hundreds of photos of endless trails, yellow arrows or scallop shells? Here we shall go over the images that every pilgrim should carry with them from the Camino de Santiago. If you are going to do some of the Jacobean Routes for the first time this year, pay close attention. And if you have already completed the Camino, there are surely none of them missing from your photo collection.
The Road to Santiago. The adventure begins!
We feel fresh. Our spirits are soaring. We are itching for the adventure to begin and to carry our memories of it away with us. The photos from the start of our pilgrimage and of the kilometres that lie ahead are among the most essential of the Camino de Santiago. And surely there is no greater pleasure than reaching the end and saying: I did it!
Follow the yellow arrow
From the start until the end of the Camino we each have two inseparable and essential companions: the yellow arrow and the scallop shell. Painted on the ground, on stone markers, on walls ... They form one of the great hallmarks of the Route that so often appeal to the camera. The options are endless: familiar, solitary or artistic poses ... Take a look.
Photo: Sandra (@ sandriita_21). https://lasonrisadecorrer.com
The stars of the Camino? People's feet, of course!
It's not the pilgrims, the hostels or the Compostela. Neither is it the Plaza del Obradoiro or the Cathedral of Santiago. The real stars of the Camino de Santiago are pilgrims’ feet; or at least as far as photos are concerned. They spend many hours and many days walking, and it is them that suffer most for it. This is why we photograph them from all angles: alongside the shells that mark out our steps, in groups, by the sea, covered in blisters... It's a given. If you undertake the Camino, your feet will end up on one of your social media accounts.
Photo: Chus Mosquera
The Camino is a place of learning, while the hostel is the place to share it. Which is why every pilgrim should add the bunk-bed you’ve shared, the kitchen where you’ve helped make dinner or the line on which you’ve aired your jacket to your list of essential snaps.
Photo: Elia A. Brito
Photo: José Barrajón
From tapas to tapas
Undertaking the Camino de Santiago also means getting to know the towns and people of the places through which it passes. Not to mention the food. Is there a greater pleasure than completing a stage before enjoying an ice-cold beer to wash down some local delicacy? For the vast majority of us the answer is a resounding no. Here in Galicia, octopus is king. But throughout the length and breadth of the Camino we have countless delicacies to help recharge one's batteries: from the pintxos of the Basque Country to Maragato stew, and from Burgos black pudding (morcilla) to jamón from Extremadura.
Photo: José Melero Alonso
The Camino de Santiago can provide us with unexpected companions. There are those who accompany us on the adventure. But there are also some surprising ones. The four-legged ones. Those with two wheels. And there even some that force you to stop and take a break from the Camino.
Photo: Pedal Morenet. Instagram: @pedalmorenet
And speaking of Camino companions, we just have to mention backpacks. Strapped to our backs, cast to the floor, on top of a signpost, with or without a shell... The backpack becomes an inseparable companion on the Camino de Santiago and as much of a star of the photos as we ourselves are. Of course, for those who already have plenty of photos and prefer to travel baggage free, we remind you that you can opt for the Paq Mochila, our luggage transportation service which operates between hostels every day. With this service, your backpack will be waiting for you as you arrive at the hostel. This is also a great place for you to take a picture of it ;-)
Photo: Gabriel Hurtado
In pursuit of the horizon
Throughout the length of our Camino we will encounter unique, incredible landscapes beyond words. Which is why we try and aim to capture them. The horizons rule above all else. And if we add ourselves in, walking into the great beyond, it's sure to earn us a ‘like’ or two.
Photo: Alba Bernabé
Selfies on the Camino
If we're on the subject of photos, we simply cannot leave them out. We're talking about selfies, of course. Any opportunity serves as a good excuse to take one. Whether it's just walking, with the sea in the background, in front of the cathedral or with any of the dozens of pilgrim statues that are dotted along the Camino... Don't hold back. It's selfie time for sure.
Photo: Lourdes Escoda
Entering Santiago de Compostela
Arriving in Santiago de Compostela is exciting. So it is clearly understandable that social media is filled with pilgrims hugging the signpost into Santiago, laying down in the Plaza del Obradoiro, taking in the Cathedral for the first time or embracing the Apostle. It is, of course, the perfect finishing touch to this photo-journey of the Camino.
Photo: Esther Sánchez Aguirre
Photo: Miguel Ángel Lillo Guzmán
Photo: Felipe Barbera Cerdá
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