The Holy Year 2021-2022 on the Camino de Santiago offers a rare and extraordinary opportunity for pilgrims worldwide. In this special time, Santiago de Compostela becomes a focal point of spiritual celebration and introspection. WAW Travel invites you to discover the essence of this auspicious period and why it’s a compelling reason for your pilgrimage.

Marking an important chapter in the Camino’s history, the Holy Year is a beacon for those seeking a deeper spiritual connection. In previous Holy Years, hundreds of thousands have flocked to Santiago, drawn by the unique experience it promises. This year, as we guide you through the traditions and significance of the Holy Year, you’ll understand why embarking on the Camino during this time is not just a journey, but a once-in-a-lifetime experience that enriches the soul.

What is a Holy Year?

Santiago de Compostela celebrates a holy year whenever July 25th, the day of Saint James, falls on a Sunday. There will be plenty of events, celebrations and extra church services, a period in which is given plenary indulgence to pilgrims passing through the Holy Door.


Camino De Santiago Holy Year


The rhythm of the sacred years is eleven, six, five, six, eleven, and so on. The previous holy year was 2010, the following will be 2027 and 2032. For the first time in the history of the pilgrimage to Santiago de Compostela since about 800, the Pope has extended the validity of the holy year to 2022 due to the pandemic.

The tradition of Camino de Santiago holy year

In a century, there are 14 Holy Years. So it’s special, that’s clear! But why is it special to do the Camino de Santiago holy year? In Santiago de Compostela people started with this celebration around 1426. The immense cathedral has many doors, but one of them is something special. The Puerta del Perdón at Plaza Quintana is always closed, except in a holy year. The opening and closing will take place on December 31 at 5 pm during a ceremony led by the archbishop. Also known as the Way of Saint James, the Camino de Santiago has the distinction of being one of the most important Christian pilgrimages in history. In the past 1000 years, many pilgrims have done a Camino Walk to the city of Santiago de Compostela.

The holy door after your Camino

During a this period, the pilgrim can earn a full indulgence if he enters through the holy door after the Camino Walk. According to the teachings of the Catholic Church, after confession and penance, there remains a temporary debt, payable in purgatory. Full or jubilee indulgence grants the believer complete remission of all temporary penalties after he has confessed and taken Communion.

What you need to know if you plan the Camino de Santiago Holy Year

Given the unique nature of this period, numerous pilgrims are planning to walk or bike their way to Santiago de Compostela. It’s important to be aware that the paths may be particularly crowded, especially on popular stretches like the final 100 kilometers from Sarria or Tui. This increase in pilgrim traffic calls for thoughtful planning and consideration to ensure a fulfilling and smooth experience.

Now, with these considerations in mind, let’s move on to our most important tips for your Camino de Santiago during this extraordinary time.


Camino De Santiago Holy Year
Alta del Perdon, Spain.

Tip 1: Be on time for Camino de Santiago Holy Year

Are you planning to go hiking or cycling the Camino in 2021 and 2022? We advise you to book your accommodations in great advance. Feel free to ask us for advice. Let us know which Camino you want to walk or cycle.

Tip 2: July 25th is the day

As you may have read, July 25 is Saint James day. Many pilgrims choose to arrive after their Camino de Santiago Holy Year on this specific day. So this can be a very busy day in the city. Accommodations are difficult to find or very expensive. This is not a problem, you just have to plan in advance. Remember: 2022 will be considered Holy Year too! Then plan your Camino Walk in this time so that you arrive on July 25 and book already your accommodation . There are all kinds of festivities in the city during that week, definitely worth experiencing. Do you want to avoid the crowds? Then you can arrive in Santiago on any day you want.

Tip 3: The best time to do Camino de Santiago Holy Year but without crowded paths?

Would you prefer to avoid Santiago for the whole month of July? No problem. You can cycle or do a Camino Walk from March to October. The weather conditions in this period are great for a Camino Walk or bike.You then have the Camino all for yourself.

Camino De Santiago Holy Year

Tip 4: Choose a more unknown Camino de Santiago Holy Year

In 2021 and 2022, many pilgrims will walk or cycle the well-known pilgrimage routes, such as the Camino Frances, Camino del Norte or Camino Portugués. You can choose to go on a Camino Walk in Holy Year on more unknown caminos around Spain. Think for example of the Cami de Cavalls in Menorca. You will discover authentic fishing villages, the most beautiful deserted beaches and all this in ultimate tranquillity.

Tip 5: Discover other parts of the pilgrimage route

Another idea is to walk or cycle different sections of the Camino, where the journey may not necessarily culminate in Santiago. This approach allows you to avoid the crowded final destination that many pilgrims aim for during this special period. We present you with some alternative options:

  • Part of the Camino Frances from Pamplona to Leon. This route has everything: an authentic atmosphere, picturesque villages and beautiful nature in Spain’s best gastronomic regions. This part of the Camino de Santiago is very varied and absolutely commendable.
  • The first part of the Camino del Norte. The Camino Walk from Irun to Bilbao and/or from Bilbao to Santander. This one is hard, but so authentic and beautiful along Spain’s north coast. This famous coastline has beautiful beaches with cliffs, great restaurants, idyllic fishing villages and fantastic cities.
  • Another idea is to start your Camino walk in Santiago. Yes, why not? The Camino de Finisterre is a pilgrimage route that does not end in the Galician capital but begins. You literally walk or cycle to the “end of the world”. A Camino Walk in Holy Year to never forget!

Ready to Embrace the Camino Journey?

Is walking or cycling the Camino to Santiago de Compostela a dream of yours? If so, it might be time to turn that dream into reality. To help you decide, I invite you to read my blog about the 5 symptoms that let you know that it is really time to take action. This blog will guide you through the signs that you’re ready for this life-changing journey.

Personalized Travel Solutions for Your Camino Experience

At WAW Travel, we understand that each pilgrim’s journey is unique. That’s why we offer a variety of travel solutions, custom-designed to suit your individual preferences for walking in Spain to Santiago de Compostela. Whether you’re seeking a solitary experience or a guided adventure, we’re here to make your Camino dream a reality.

Don’t hesitate to contact us for any curiosity, we will be happy to help you join this amazing adventure! Write an email to or follow us on our social profiles for constant news and updates: Instagram Facebook. Buen Camino!