Four Ways to Travel the Camino de Santiago

Camino de  Santiago pic

Camino de Santiago

A Maryland lawyer with over two decades of legal experience, J. Christopher Llinas provides criminal and traffic-related legal services. An avid traveler in his free time, Christopher Llinas has hiked the Camino del Santiago in Spain.

Also known as the Way of St. James, the Camino de Santiago consists of a network of routes that wind throughout Europe and converge at Santiago de Compostela in northwest Spain, the supposed burial place of James the Apostle. The first pilgrims traveled the route in the ninth and 10th centuries, despite the risk of doing so in Muslim-ruled lands that were hostile to Christians. Today, pilgrims travel along four main routes: the French Way, the Northern Way, the Silver Way, and the Primitive Way.

The French Way begins on the French side of the Pyrenees and winds through northern Spain. The most famous route, it hosted over 180,000 pilgrims in 2004. The trail’s popularity is due in part to its flat terrain and pleasant weather.

The Northern Way is known for being quiet and picturesque, giving pilgrims beautiful views of the Bay of Biscay. It snakes along the northern coast of Spain, through the mountains of Asturias and presents the greatest physical challenge to travelers.

Starting in southern Spain at Seville, the Silver Way follows an ancient Roman trade route that served as a thoroughfare for the transport and trade of silver. The Silver Way is the longest route of the Camino de Santiago.

Beginning in Asturias, the Primitive Way is the first pilgrimage route. It is an exceptional route for nature lovers, giving them views of beautiful scenery and taking them through numerous hospitably quaint villages.