What better way to set yourself a fitness challenge for 2018 and walk the Camino de Santiago de Compostela Pilgrim Walk. During the past decade the number of pilgrims commencing their journey in Sarria has increased rom 39,583 to 58,554. Pilgrimage is experienced on many different levels. There is the physical challenge of walking a long distance in a minimum time. How deep we choose to make the experience, is entirely left to us, by slowing the walking pace and the extended periods of silence allows time for reflection and introspection which can lead to greater insights, change and growth. Spring is an ideal time for taking up this challenge, the sun is warm, flowers are appearing, it can be windy, but the route is not over crowded.
How long does it take? It is roughly divided into 5 stages, about 23 km per day.
Preparation – Start to walk and build up your miles. Invest in a pair of good walking boots. Pack a light rain jacket, the weather can be unpredictable. Take a sun hat and sun cream. April can be very warm. Your backpack should weigh no more than 10 kilos. Foot care is essential to avoid blisters, make sure socks are breathable.
To enhance the experience – do not bring. Your mobile phone, unless you are a solo traveller and you may need this for an emergency. Your watch – you can learn to navigate and adapt to your natural clock. Travel light and get rid of excess clutter.
Language – It is very useful to learn some basic Spanish words.
Pilgrim Passport – This document is a credential of the places you visit along the way.
Food & Drink – A minimum daily intake of 2 litres per day to avoid dehydration. Isotonic drinks containing sodium and potassium are useful. Pilgrims should eat high-energy foods (chocolate, dried fruit, figs, flap jacks).
Basic first aid kit – (antiseptic cream, gauze, band aids, sunscreen, adhesive tape, nail scissors, plasters, Vaseline.