Even though walking the Camino has been on your bucket list for a while, we know that sometimes it is difficult to find the courage and the motivation to make the decision. This can be especially daunting if your dream Camino is a solo-traveler experience and you identify as a woman.
In this post we want to give you the truth about what it means to walk the Camino as a woman. Whether you’re looking for inspiration, reassurance or a bit of positive pep-talk, you’ll find that in the next few lines. Just keep reading, and decide by yourself if the Camino is the right fit for you!
First things first, walking the Camino de Santiago can be a powerful and empowering experience for women. As women we are told too many times that we cannot be ambitious and successful, yet also be nurturing and caregiving. The Camino challenges these societal expectations and allows women to embrace their full range of emotions and experiences.
The Camino will allow you to embrace your independence and relish the opportunity to travel on your own terms. You can set your own pace, take detours whenever you feel like it, and maybe even make a few unexpected stops along the way. Who knows, you might just discover a hidden gem that you would have otherwise missed!
And don’t worry – even if you start on your own, you’ll never be alone on the Camino. You’ll meet fellow pilgrims from all over the world who are all there for their own reasons. The Camino is a journey that promotes camaraderie and sisterhood among women, who may come from different backgrounds, cultures, and walks of life, but share a common goal of personal growth and self-discovery. You might make lifelong friends, share a bottle of wine, and exchange stories that will inspire and uplift you. Just remember – you’re only as alone as you choose to be on the Camino!
Of course, there will be challenges along the way. The Camino journey requires physical strength, mental fortitude, and emotional resilience. You’ll have to face hills, heat, and perhaps a few blisters.
But with every step you take, you’ll feel stronger and more accomplished. You’ll be walking a way that requires women to push their limits, both physically and mentally. It’s a journey that will allow you to challenge societal expectations and break free from the constraints of traditional gender roles.
And we promise that at the end of the journey, you’ll look back and be amazed by just how far you’ve come.
Moreover, the Camino is a journey that allows women to disconnect from the distractions of daily life, to focus on the present moment, and to find clarity and purpose. It’s a journey that allows women to reconnect with their inner selves, to find inner peace, and to return home with a renewed sense of perspective and inner strength.
If you are planning your Camino as a solo woman, these tips will help you feel ready and safe before you leave your hometown:
- Prioritize your safety: Let’s start by saying that the Camino is a safe option for all travelers, including those traveling alone. But there are some extra steps (no pun intended) you can take to be prepared and feel secure during your walk. For instance, it is always a great idea to inform someone of your itinerary or to carry a charged phone with you at all times.
- Be prepared physically: While the Camino is not a technical hike, it does involve walking long distances over hilly terrain and uneven paths. Make sure to train your body beforehand by going for long walks and building up your endurance and strength. Follow our Camino training plan recommendations to prepare your body and your mind for the walk ahead.
- Pack smart: Pack only the essentials and make sure your backpack is comfortable to carry. Bring a first aid kit, a good pair of hiking shoes, and comfortable clothing. When in doubt, check our blog post on what to pack for your Camino. There are great ideas for all the seasons of the year!
- Plan ahead: The Camino de Santiago is a popular pilgrimage route, so it’s important to plan your journey well in advance. This includes researching the different routes, booking accommodations, and making sure you have all the necessary gear. Luckily for you, we are here to help! Reach out to one of our Camino experts and we’ll help you design the perfect Camino for you, your goals, your wants, and needs.
- Embrace the camaraderie: The Camino is a social journey, and you’ll meet many other pilgrims along the way. Embrace the camaraderie and make new friends, but also remember to respect your own personal space and boundaries. You don’t have to walk with someone just because you happen to be in the same place at the same time!
- Have an open mind and a sense of adventure: The Camino is a journey that can feel both challenging and rewarding. Be open to new experiences, be prepared to face unexpected experiences, but most importantly have fun and enjoy the journey!
When doubt hunts you, remember: you’re not the first woman to walk the Camino, and you won’t be the last. If you need inspiration, check Agnieszka’s story: she ran the Camino Frances in just 10 days! Or check Debra’s list of the reasons why she is proud of herself after finishing her Camino. Or discover why Melissa decided to put her belongings in storage and said goodbye to her life in Brooklyn, New York, to take on life as a global digital nomad. You’re following the footsteps – literally! – of thousands of women that walked before you and you’re preparing the way for those that will come.
If you’re looking for extra motivation, check our blog post on 10 celebrity women who walked the Camino. Their experiences might resonate with you!
Walking the Camino de Santiago can be an empowering and transformative experience, whether you identify as a woman or not. The Camino allows us to challenge societal expectations, connect with other strong and independent people, and find inner peace and purpose. It’s a journey that encourages us to embrace our full range of emotions and experiences and to return home stronger, more confident, and more self-aware.
So, ask for a quote, pack your bags, and prepare for a lifetime’s journey. The Camino de Santiago awaits, and you’re ready to conquer it like the fierce, independent woman you are!