You may have heard the phrase "There are as many roads as there are pilgrims" but... Is this true? The answer is yes. Nowadays we can find many Caminos that lead us to Santiago de Compostela, however, do you know how many Caminos de Santiago there are in the Iberian Peninsula?
Over time and to facilitate the pilgrimage have been signaling the various roads and, although the Junta de Galicia has only recognized only 10 official routes there are also others within the Iberian Peninsula. In fact, in the peninsula we can find more than 50 routes and if we take into account the entire European continent, there are countless pilgrimage routes to Santiago.
Now, once the question of how many Pilgrims' Roads to Santiago there are in the Iberian Peninsula is solved, the next question is why are there so many Pilgrims' Roads to Santiago?
The answer goes back to the discovery of the tomb of St. James the Apostle. At that time each traveler made his own way: from the door of his house to Compostela. Over time, many routes became popular for various reasons such as safety, ease of transit...
Despite this, the Camino de Santiago starts from the starting point, usually the house, and that is why there are so many paths.
After knowing how many roads there are and why, from our Eco Hotel we are going to explain you the main Caminos de Santiago in the Iberian Peninsula: a little of its history, its distance and its stages:
Undoubtedly the best known and most traveled route. Its route covers 790 km and is distributed in 32 stages. Its history dates back to shortly after the discovery of the tomb of the Apostle, in the ninth century. It was considered the Main Street of Europe and in 1987 it was declared the first European cultural itinerary.
The first stage begins in Roncesvalles and during the Camino you can admire several points of interest such as the Monastery of San Millán de Suso and Yuso, the archaeological sites of Atapuerca or the Cathedral of Burgos.
On stage 15: Frómista - Carrión de los Condes you will also find our Eco-Hotel Doña Mayor. A hotel where you can stop to rest, relax by the fireplace or cool off in the pool on hot summer days. Located in the heart of the French Way, it is ready to welcome pilgrims so they can recover energy to continue their Camino.
The Northern Way also dates back to the 9th century and is a route along the Asturian-Galician coast. However, it must be said that many variants of this road have emerged in order to circumvent the banks and inlets of the sea until it reaches the interior of Galicia. The route has a total of 820 km and 35 stages.
This route is not as long as the previous ones, as it consists of 321 km and only 8 stages. However, the Primitive Way is of great historical importance as it is the oldest following in the footsteps of the first pilgrim, the monarch Alfonso II.
The English Way is known as the route used by pilgrims coming from the north and west of Europe who arrived with their ships to the coast of A Coruña and then continued by land to Santiago de Compostela.
The English Way has several routes: one starting from A Coruña and another starting from Ferrol. The distance of the route is 119 km and is divided into 6 stages.
The Portuguese Way is another world-renowned route. It is the second most traveled road after the French Way and its origins date back to the year 813.
This medieval route runs through the Portuguese lands to the north from Oporto entering Galicia, has a distance of 233 km and is only divided into 5 stages. You can find another variant of this route known as the Portuguese Way of the coast.
The Via de la Plata is a route to Santiago de Compostela of 700 km and divided into 27 stages. Its origins date back to Roman times, being one of the most important communication routes throughout the Hispanic West.
The creation of the Vía de la Plata was based on the thousands of years old Roman roads that once linked Emérita Augusta and Austriaca Augusta.
This route begins in Seville and runs through six Spanish provinces until it reaches the city of Astorga, in León, where it joins the French Way.
As its name indicates, this route is popular during the winter months and arose from the need to find a solution to some of the problems that the French Way had during the coldest months of the year.
As a solution, a variant of the route was created, which today is known as the Camino de Invierno (Winter Road). This route starts in Ponferrada and continues in a south-westerly direction parallel to the river Sil. At present the Camino de Invierno is 257 km long and is divided into 9 stages.
Other routes worth mentioning are the Camino de Santiago to Finisterre and Muxía, since it is the only route that starts in Santiago and ends in Finisterre or Muxía, and the Ruta del Mar de Arousa y Río Ulla, a route that follows the last steps of the Apostle's remains until reaching the capital of Santiago de Compostela.
If you dare to walk the French Camino de Santiago you can stay in our Eco-Hotel Doña Mayor, a hotel located in Frómista (stage 15 of the Camino) and that will serve as a refuge on your pilgrimage.
Our Eco Hotel is synonymous with rest: here we like the slow and calm life. Enjoy the tranquility and the good work of the Eco Hotel Doña Mayor, where sustainability and respect for our planet mark our life.
You will start the day with a homemade breakfast, with products from our environment, organic eggs, seasonal juices, cheeses or homemade biscuits, among others. And if you need more time to recover from the long walk, our garden is perfect for a nice nap.
Discover Frómista: its paths and trails, Romanesque art, culture and gastronomy with us. Take advantage of your pilgrimage to discover the wonders of Tierra de Campos, we are waiting for you pilgrim!