The Celtic Camino 2018-11-22T14:00:33+00:00

THE CELTIC CAMINO, 2019

THE CELTIC CAMINO, 2019

DAY 1: We walk along our chosen path at home, obtaining verification that we have covered the required 25km distance. This will be recorded on our personal Pilgrim Passports obtained from the Camino Society of Ireland.

DAY 2: Within a week or so, we depart from Dublin to Santiago and transfer to A Coruna in Northern Galicia.

DAY 3: Official guided tour of the historic coastal city of A Coruna.

DAY 4: First day’s walk, A Coruna to Segude. 20km.

DAY 4: Segude to Hospital de Bruma. 15km.

DAY 5: De Bruma to Seguiro. 25km.

DAY 6: Seguiro to Santiago. 17km.

DAY 7: Explore the City and visit historic places associated with Irish Pilgrims throughout the ages.

DAY 8: Short transfer to airport for flight home. For full details, please contact me.

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INTRODUCTION

Historical records show that in Medieval times, pilgrims arriving from Ireland, England and other Northern countries disembarked in A Coruna and other ports along the North of Spain such as Ferrol. Over the years, these routes became known as the Camino Ingles. However, given the close historical connection between Ireland and Santiago, the Pilgrim Centre in Santiago, the local authority in A Coruna, and the Camino Society of Ireland have designated a walking pilgrimage which starts in Ireland and continues from A Coruna to Santiago, the CELTIC CAMINO. We are required to walk 25km along one of the Irish Pilgrimage Routes, such as St. Finbarr’s route to Gougan Barra, St. Kevin’s Way in the East, St. Declan’s Way along with Ballintubber Abbey to Westport Bay in County Mayo. And then we complete the remaining 75km South to Santiago from A Coruna in order to receive our joint Compostelas!

HISTORICAL BACKGROUND

The promotion of Santiago de Compostela as a pilgrimage destination was linked with the doctrines surrounding purgatory and the gaining of indulgences, and joined with Rome and Jerusalem as one of the three major pilgrimage destinations of the Christian world. In the 17th. century, pilgrims from the Gaelic parts of Ireland began going to Santiago, leaving various ports in small craft to join merchant ships sailing to ports along the North Western coast of Galicia. Those from Leinster and ‘The Pale’ had begun much earlier. Either way, there are accounts of Irish pilgrims being lost at sea or dying from inadequate supplies of food and fresh water, or contracting continental diseases from which they had no immunity. After the Battle of Kinsale, Irish Chieftains sailed for A Coruna and made their way to Santiago as the old Gaelic order declined. The bardic schools and centres of learning, and the monasteries were suppressed and they sailed for Europe, especially to areas of Spain where Irish colleges and centres of influence were being established. A year or so after Kinsale, Donal Cam O’Sullivan Bere made his famous long march to Leitrim and sailed to A Coruna. He went to Santiago, was well received, being made a general and a Count, the Conde de Biraven in the Spanish nobility. The main objective of Donal Cam, along with others in the Flight of the Earls, was to regroup and educate their followers, preserve the Irish language and culture, to get military experience and eventually to return to Ireland and reclaim their heritage. To this end, they got the support of King Phillip, and established the ‘College of St. Patrick for the Noble Irish’ at 44 Rua Nova, where it still stands with its royal coat of arms in stone high above the front entrance. Our journey, beginning along the Pilgrim Paths at home may end at the Cathedral Square like the countless other pilgrims, but then we’ll also spend a moment or two at Rua Nova 44, a few minutes away.

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