What is a Pilgrimage?


All religions, from the rudimentary to the most expansive, have a common specific place of reference that assumes particular importance for their followers. In their eyes, this singular aura marks out a territory traveled mentally as often as desired and physically as many times as possible, but depending on the follower’s means, at least once in a lifetime.

A parenthesis if not a break, a journey of pilgrimage, however long, provides an opportunity to leave daily contingencies behind in order to evaluate one’s quest so far and devote oneself to reflection. Pilgrims pledges themselves to that higher cause of a greater understanding of who they are and what in them is true. They search for that meaning which binds their hearts and points them on their way through life.

Faithful, adventurous and curious pilgrims have been making the arduous journey along the rugged Camino de Santiago in Northern Spain for more than a thousand years. The Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela, dedicated to the Apostle St. James, is their destination. El Camino de Santiago is one of Europe’s best known and traveled pilgrimage routes and destinations. The Holy Year of 2010 estimates a record turnout of over 200,000 pilgrims.

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