In spring 2015 I plan to cycle from home in Athlone to Santiago de Compostello in Spain and home again. Accommodation will be in Auberges and with warmshowers and couchsurfing hosts, with the occasional hotel or guesthouse when things get desperate!
As a nonbeliever why do I want to do a catholic pilgrimage?
I want to do a tour of of what I call “an atheist’s sacred spaces”. These are the holy wells and cillins, the industrial schools, the Magdelene laundries and the refugee direct provision sites, the odd little memorials that are carefully written out of official history. Spain has more than it’s share of these places too, Gurnica, Burgos prison and statues of Santiago Matamoros everywhere. I’ll see if I can write a few reports about the trip. (Maybe not, the world is polluted with poor quality “My adventures on the Camino” books!)
Just now the plans are:
From home in Athlone cycle up the midlands to Derry. Then down the west coast, through Donegal, Sligo, Mayo, Galway, Clare and Limerick to Cork. Take the ferry to Roscoff, then down the west coast of France to the Spanish border. Across the Pyrenees and across north Spain on Camino Frances to Santiago de Compostella. Continue to the end of the world at Finnestere, back on the Camino del Norte to Santander. Take the ferry to Plymouth and come home via Bristol, Cardiff and Fishguard.
This is a nice gentle spin, it should take me about two months! Anyone like to join me for a day or a week?