Pilgrim ways are spread all over the world, in addition to the religious thought, you can distance yourself from the daily stress, get a clear head, reflect on yourself and your life, and enjoy the landscapes through which the pilgrim routes lead!
Camino Portugues – The Portuguese Way
The Way of St. James is one of the most famous and popular pilgrim ways, but there is not one Way of St. James. There are many different pilgrim ways that lead to the sacred destination of Santiago de Compostela, where the tomb of the Apostle James is supposed to be.
The following paragraph is about the Portuguese Way of St. James Camino Portugues. It is now, after the Camino Frances, the most walked Way of St. James.
The Camino Portugues – on this Way of St. James the pilgrims have to go 240 km to reach their destination. This makes it particularly suitable for beginners who will reach the destination Santiago de Compostela in about two weeks.
People who are a bit more experienced can start in Lisbon or simply hike on one of the other longer pilgrim ways, such as the Camino Frances, for which you probably need five weeks.
By walking the Camino Portugues you will not only experience the culture of the country of the destination Spain, but also those of Portugal. The 240 kilometers are evenly divided between the two countries.
Camino Portugues – Sights Along the Way
Of course, depending on where you want to start, it is worth sacrificing a whole day for the city. Especially Porto is recommended, a really beautiful city! Either you can start the hiking tour of the Way of St. James directly from the airport or you look at the city as already mentioned. Porto is the second-largest city in Portugal after Lisbon.
Porto has a beautiful old town, which is also a UNESCO World Heritage. Furthermore, the 800 years old Cathedral of Porto and the Ponte Luis I bridge are definitely worth a visit.
On the whole route of the Way of St. James you will experience breathtaking landscapes of Portugal and Spain.
You could make another stop in Tui, this city can be reached after about a week hiking. The highlight of this city is the Cathedral of Tui.
When you finally reach your destination, the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela, and you still have not enough walking and traveling, I can recommend a trip to Finisterre! At Cape Finisterre, you can enjoy a beautiful view of the sea.
If you are interested in Camino Portugues, you are welcome to read a travel experience about it here!
St. Kevin – Make a Pilgrimage in Ireland
The Saint Kevin James Pilgrim way is a very short and unknown pilgrim route. It is located in the west of Ireland in the Wicklow Mountains, is only 30 km long and therefore quite in one-day doable. Therefore, for those who want to try a pilgrim’s way very interesting.
The pilgrim route starts in Hollywood and the destination is the Glendalough Valley, following the footsteps of St. Kevin and his way to Glendalough, where he founded a monastery town.
The St. Kevin’s Catholic Church and Other Highlights Along the Way
The Saint Kevin Pilgrim route does not score with big cities on the way, but with the stunning nature and beautiful churches and church ruins. The first highlight on the way is a path along the King River. While hiking you can enjoy the river with the mountains behind it.
Then you go slowly towards the Wicklow Gap, where you have reached the highest point of the pilgrim route and can enjoy the view of the landscape again.
When you finally arrive at the destination of the pilgrim route, you can visit the Catholic Church of St Kevin and the Trinity Church. They are not the most imposing churches, but definitely worth a visit!
If you have more than one day and still want to hike, we recommend the Wicklow Way, which also crosses Glendalough. From there you can either head north to Dublin or explore the Wicklow Way in a southerly direction.
On the Wicklow Way, you can continue to enjoy the fascinating nature of the Wicklow Mountains!
Shikoku Pilgrimage Tour
Now we come to one of the most interesting pilgrim routes outside of Europe. Shikoku is the smallest of the four main islands of Japan and is located in the south of Japan.
The pilgrim way of Shikoku is a known and important pilgrim route among the Buddhists. The pilgrim route is 1200 km long and you probably need 30 to 60 days for it. Here it is recommended to come here only as an experienced pilgrim.
The pilgrim route starts and ends on the main island of Japan with a visit from Koya-san. From there you start with appropriate clothing (white clothes, walking stick and sedge hat) and go on the pilgrim way to visit all 88 temples that you have to visit on the island.
Sights and Caves on Shikoku in Japan
On the pilgrim’s way, you will come to 88 temples where you get a signature or a stamp for your pilgrim book. But there are other beautiful places on the island besides the 88 temples you’ll pass! In addition to the 88 temples, there are 20 other temples on the island, which are definitely worth seeing.
After some time, you will also come through the city Kochi, another highlight on your trip. Here you can explore one of the last castles in Japan built in timber construction. It is also worth visiting the caves of Kami, also called Ryugado Cave. These are not far from Kochi and you can look forward to a four-kilometer long cave walk.
Another cave you should not miss is Cape Muroto. Over time, the waves have made a hole in the mountain. And so there exists today a cave with a smaller cave inside in which the pilgrims can meditate. When you sit in the cave you have a special view of the sea and the sky through the entrance. Right next to the cave is a beautiful Kukai statue.
To pilgrim on Shikoku will bring you unforgettable memories!