AT THE DESTINATION. So there I stand in front of the cathedral in Santiago.
The goal of the pilgrimage to Santiago de Compostela is reached. In the cathedral under the altar is the tomb of the apostle Jacobus. 2004 is a holy year and therefore there are especially many pilgrims on the way. Every day there are four pilgrim masses in the cathedral and the church is always full. Many thoughts flow through the mind. In all the hustle and bustle, you need a lot of strength and concentration to come to yourself. But then, to the impressive sound of the organ, the huge incense burner, the botafumeiro, is swung. Eight to ten men pull the rope and it flies very impressively from one side aisle to the other - and there is scene applause.
Poor Saint James, every day thousands of tourists and pilgrims pass by you. Every 10 seconds new faces look at your resting place, a constant storm of flashbulbs breaks in on you. I hope that in all this hustle and bustle you can take in the many requests that come your way and not get tired.
My pilgrim's passport is filled to the brim with stamps from all the stops on the journey. At the Pilgrims' Office, on presentation of the pilgrim's passport, I received the pilgrim's certificate and from the bishop in the cathedral the pilgrim's blessing.
Now the pilgrimage is over. A mix of feelings overwhelms me. I am proud and happy that I made it and at the same time disappointed and sad that the wonderful journey is over.
The old town of Santiago is full of life. Tourists and pilgrims bring color and movement to the medieval alleys and arcades. Many squares invite you to linger, rest and enjoy.
Pictures of the cathedral and cloister
Pictures of the old town
The WebCam in Santiago. It shows the square in front of the cathedral Web Cam at Obradoiro Square (last functional check February 2021)
This panoramic image of Obradoiro Square covers the panning range of the web cam. Click on it to enlarge!