The Santiago Way: The French Way
The pilgrims’ route to Santiago played a fundamental role in the exchange of cultures between the Iberian Peninsula and the rest of Europe in the Middle Ages. For this reason, the Way of St James was nominated as the First European Cultural Itinerary by the Council of Europe. The so-called French Route, which has the longest tradition and is the best-known outside Spain, has also been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Starting in Roncesvalles (Navarre), it finally reaches Santiago de Compostela some 750 kilometres later. A route, therefore, which links Europe with northern Spain, passing secluded churches, bridges, cathedrals, monasteries and other such places of interest, accompanied by a permanent backcloth of greenery.
If you want to obtain the pilgrim’s credential, known as a Compostela, you have to cover at least the last 100 kilometres of the way on foot or on horseback, a distance that rises to 200 kilometres if you are travelling by bicycle; and don’t forget to get your credential stamped at least twice every day.