Statistics from the Pilgrim Office in Santiago de Compostela show that the Camino de Santiago continues to gain in popularity. As of writing, it has been reported that a total of 346,976 pilgrims have received their Compostela in Santiago. This is an increase of almost 20,000 on the previous year (327,342).

Pilgrims in the Plaza do Obradoiro.  - PHOTO: ANTONIO HERNÁNDEZ
Pilgrims in the Plaza do Obradoiro. – PHOTO: ANTONIO HERNÁNDEZ

59% of all pilgrims who have received their Compostela in 2019 were not from Spain. The main countries were Italy, Germany, the United States, France and Portugal. The statistics reflect the enormous worldwide impact of the Camino de Santiago, as travelers from any part of the globe walk to the Galician capital every day.  The long list of nationalities includes places as far away as Australia, Canada, Japan, Russia, Thailand, South Africa, Trinidad and Tobago or Djibouti, a small country in the Red Sea.

South Korea

One of the countries that has emerged this 2019 has been South Korea, where the Camino de Santiago is a phenomenon. In fact, the Korean Air company began operating links from Seoul to Lavacolla airport from November. Since the last Holy Year in 2010, the number of pilgrims in this Asian country has increased five fold, with more than six thousand annually.

Routes chosen

  • French Way – 189,578 pilgrims
  • Portuguese Way – 72,220 pilgrims
  • Camino del Norte – 22,244 pilgrims
  • Camino Ingles / Celtic Camino – 19,004 pilgrims
  • Camino Primitivo – 15,735 pilgrims
  • Vía de la Plata – 9,179 pilgrims
  • Muxía-Fisterra – 1,546 pilgrims
  • Camino Invierno – 1,027 pilgrims
  • Other – 693 pilgrims

With the aim of welcoming this growing number of walkers and with the Holy Year approaching in 2021, the Ministry of Culture and Tourism has launched an ambitious plan for improving albergues for 2019-2020. An investment of €7 million has been provided.