Walking the Camino de Santiago is an amazing experience. Sharing this experience with your sibling can make it even more special. People travel with a family member for different reasons: Sometimes, siblings are just very close and love to spend time together. Other siblings may don’t see each other very often because they live far from each other or grew apart. Then, walking the Camino together is a great, casual way of reconnecting. There are as many different motivations to walk the Camino with siblings as there are families. We collected some stories of siblings on the Camino for you. Dive into the world of the Camino and get inspired!
How about an entertaining book?
“The Way of the Piney Sisters” by Jane Paul and Charlotte Piney
This is the story of the retired sisters Jane and Charlotte from the UK. Despite not being in perfect health and especially fit, they decide to walk 800kms on the Camino Frances. In their book, they share their experiences in an amusing, honest and informative way. They take you on their journey by describing the places they saw and the people they met. Completed by beautiful photos, this travel diary tells a story of a journey with many highs and some lows. Jane and Charlotte learned that siblings can rise above the cliché of rivalry, proving that even something so simple as a long walk can have great impact.
“Utterly Brilliant” by Timmy Mallett
You might know Timmy Mallett as the cheery and remarkably bespectacled host of the colourful show Wacaday. His catchphrase ‘utterly brilliant’ as well as his famous record in 1990, ‘Itsy Bitsy Teenie Weenie Yellow Polka-dot Bikini’, are two of his unique contributions to the media world. Did you know that he also travelled on the Camino? In 2018, Timmy decided to cycle 3,500 kilometres from his home in the UK to Santiago and back. His motivation: commemorating his brother Martin, who had died a few days earlier and who was born with Downs Syndrome.
Timmy refers to his Camino as “a journey of exploration, honouring Martin’s outlook on life that everyone can reach their potential.” On the way, Timmy had his painting gear ready at all times. He created an artistic and unconventional travel journal that is an entertaining mixture of history and biography. On the way, he left “Martin Mallett” name tags for other pilgrims to find. Doing so, he likes to inspire people with Martin’s mindset of reaching your full potential. This story of faith and the beauty of life shows the reader how important it is to embrace every moment of every day.
“On the Primitive Way” by Landon Roussel
This is the story of two Texan brothers going on a pilgrimage on the Camino Primitivo. Walking from Oviedo to Santiago de Compostela and climbing the mountains of Asturias, the brothers Landon and Cory reconnected again. They had been estranged for over a decade.This was due to Cory’s drug abuse, addiction and imprisonment. On their journey, they fight nature’s obstacles together, including heavy rain, blizzards and steep climbs. This experience welded the brothers together like nothing before. “On the Primitive Way” is not only a story of the Camino, it is also a story of love, healing from addiction, and of reconciliation.
“The Camino de Santiago – A Brother’s Way”
This is a homemade documentary of Jeremy’s journey on the Camino. In spring 2018, the American walked the Camino Frances from Saint-Jean-Pied-de-Port to Santiago de Compostela and then further on to Cape Finisterre. During the whole way, he carried his brother Jimmy’s ashes with him, who had died in an accident a few years before. Jeremy says: “The Camino was quite the adventure and I am forever grateful I had the opportunity to walk it and share my experience here with family and friends. Most importantly, I want to share the memory of my brother, Jimmy Frick.” The touching and heartwarming film boasts great cinematography and is available on YouTube.
Those of you who already completed a Camino and had a chance to explore Santiago de Compostela may have seen the two colourful women in the local Alameda Park. The statue is called “Two Marias” and depicts the Spanish sisters Maruxa and Coralia Fanino Ricart. Under Franco, their family endured a lot of suffering. You can read about their history here. Maruxa and Coralia were well known among the locals, as they regularly visited Alameda Park, dressed and styled extravagantly, for a chat or flirt with the people. Some argue that this behaviour was their way of dealing with their trauma, others see them as freedom fighters.
When Prashant Kamalkar Shilotri (66) and his brother Ravindra (57) walked the Camino Portugues Coastal in 2018, they were the first Indian siblings on the Camino. They talked about their adventure in an interview with the Times of India: “At our age, many would think twice before embarking on such a long journey. But we wanted to test our endurance.” Their fitness and endurance was not their only motivation. With their pilgrimage, they aimed to raise money for a charity called “Sight for Kids”. As they come from a coastal region of India, they were also looking forward to try Galician and Portuguese fish specialities. The Camino has something to offer for everyone!
Have you been bitten by the travel bug? Walking the Camino with your sibling is a holiday like no other. Call your family and start planning your journey now!