Can jewellery intended to help combat negativity, worry and stress make a suitable gift for someone planning to walk El Camino?
With the Junta de Andalucía in southern Spain announcing further development of it’s own Camino routes – Camino del Argar, Camino Mozárabe and Camino al Rocío (see below), the prominence of walking Caminos as a cathartic experience to help purge the soul of life’s troubles, once again comes to the fore.
Founded in Christian faith and rooted in spiritual belief, some of the Camino jewellery in our SHOP has been added to a range of jewellery aimed at people wanting to combat any negativity, anxiety or stress in their lives, especially when starting something new or adventurous (including walking El Camino de Santiago, for example) and to help promote positivity, optimism and success.
So can this jewellery also make a good gift for a Camino walker?
We think so, yes, because much of our jewellery for positivity, optimism and success is interchangeable with our traditional Camino jewellery:
Jewellery for positivity, optimism and success
The designs of our necklaces, bracelets and earrings are based on the principles of faith and belief . . the belief that one’s goals are achievable, whatever they are: It is jewellery with meaning. Nowhere is this feeling of belief and achievability more powerful than amongst the community of walkers (and bikers) who travel “El Camino de Santiago” (the Way of St. James) every year . . fired up by the dream and the enthusiasm for reaching their goal.
Many Camino travellers have a strong Christian faith but, in recent decades, that Christian faith, once so common amongst Camino walkers, has given way somewhat to a more secular approach: Indeed nowadays, people choose to do a Camino as much for personal reasons, as for any religious reason: They decide to take time out of their busy modern life and perhaps look for something a bit different, in the hope perhaps, of finding inspiration or spiritual enlightenment as they journey along: They are able to reflect on their life whilst in the supportive environment of their Camino. No doubt they hope to improve their outlook on life and bring themselves closer into contact with nature – whilst expanding their cultural horizons through contact with other walkers.
Many of these so-called ‘pilgrims’ on the Way of Saint James carry the Scallop Shell symbol of El Camino de Santiago as a token, a charm, a keepsake . . or on a piece of jewellery. Others (perhaps a bit more “religious” ) wear a Cross of St James.
The shell has great significance in jewellery: It symbolises strength, commitment and determination. In this sense, it has special meaning to millions of people, and is commonly used by individuals to help them feel more confident about themselves.
The Cross of Saint James, according to many Spaniards, “es un símbolo que favorece el coraje y la esperanza ante las dificultades” [a symbol that favours courage and hope in the face of difficulties] . . promoting both faith and good fortune, as well as strength and hope.
Some 200,000 pilgrims travel El Camino de Santiago every year from all over the world to find inspiration and/or deeper spiritual understanding. Many of them carry one of these symbols and everyone experiences the journey in a different way.
Camino gift ideas
But whatever somebody’s journey – whether on El Camino itself, a business trip, a gap year, trekking, etc, (or perhaps merely the “journey” through life in general), many people like to carry a symbolic charm or piece of jewellery to encourage them and give them belief – as well as, in their minds, to protect them. Studies have shown that symbolic tokens and charms can boost people’s confidence, with many admitting there’s power in a thought made positive by meaningful charms such as these – being a constant reminder of purpose and desires: In addition to any value that these symbols have in themselves, or the religious faith that they might represent, symbolic and meaningful jewellery such as this can also act as a reminder to be careful when travelling: And this can be a powerful aid to staying safe whilst away from home too.
Buy Camino de Santiago souvenirs and gifts online
Much of our jewellery is hand-crafted in Galicia, close to El Camino de Santiago. It would make an ideal gift for any special event / occasion, but particularly for someone starting out on a new adventure in life – like walking a Camino, or even starting a new job, travelling afar or beginning retirement.
What to buy a Camino walker – Faith Jewellery?
There are many “caminos” or “walks” in the world but the Spanish “Way of St James” is probably the most famous, along with the Islamic Hajj to Mecca. We have a complete range of Camino jewellery in our SHOP online.
Here is a bit of information about some of the less well known “Caminos” in Spain that are currently in the news: Camino del Argar, Camino Mozárabe and Destino Rocío:
El Camino del Argar
El Camino del Argar is a rather obscure (arduous and long) route from southern Spain to Santiago de Compostela in the north. It starts at the Cathedral of Almería in Andalucía from whence it traverses the entire Iberian Peninsula, initially via Cabo de Gata and along the south coast before heading inland and north-west. It passes through places such as San José, Rosalquilar, Las Negras, Carboneras, Mojácar, Garrucha, Vera, Cuevas de Almanzora and on through to Huércal Overa and Lorca before heading north up through Murcia to Almendricos, Albacete and along the Camino de Levante.
From Mora (Toledo) it’s main route then circumvents Madrid and joins the Vía de la Plata in Zamora north-west of the Spanish capital before finally heading into Santiago de Compostela in Galicia. In total, the Camino del Argar is about 1,500 Km. It is named Camino del Argar after an early Bronze Age settlement/culture “El Argar” which was based around the small town of Antas in Almería in eastern Andalucía. The community was active from about 2200 to 1500 BC and was renowned for its pottery and metallurgical techniques.
El Camino Mozárabe
The Camino de Santiago Mozárabe (also known as the Camino de Santiago Sanabrés) arose in the Middle Ages linking the important ports of Al-Andalus with some of the larger cities on the western side of Spain such as Córdoba and Mérida. These days, the paths between Almería and Granada are signposted and have some infrastructure for pilgrims / walkers along the way. But other parts of the route are less well marked until one reaches the Via de la Plata.
Starting on the Mediterranean coast in Almería it follows the chain of valleys of the Andarax and Nacimiento rivers to Guadix and thence to Granada along the old Roman and Muslim roads that linked these two cities taking in the terraces of the Alpujarras and parts of the Sierra Nevada. It is a strenuous route over the mountains before dropping down to Córdoba but from there to Mérida it is more relaxed. Nonetheless, it is a very long Camino indeed, crossing the whole of the Spanish peninsular south to north.
El Camino al Rocío
El Rocío is a village located 15 km from Almonte in the province of Huelva, Andalucía (Spain). The Rocío Pilgrimage (known as Romería de El Rocío or more simply “El Rocío”) is an age-old tradition of travelling early summer to the church of La Virgen del Rocio in the village of El Rocío in honour of “La Virgen” (whose image was believed to have been witnessed at this location in the 15th Century, and is now represented in the “Ermita de Sancta María de las Rocinas – or Ermita de El Rocío). The Romería brings together roughly one million pilgrims every year.
This fervent event which is best described as somewhere between religion and folklore, takes place on the second day of Pentecost (May or June – depending on the year) but the build-up to it (and the journey) can take weeks with many people travelling in horse-drawn carts from far away with singing and dancing round the camp fires every night. The festival dates from 1653, when the Virgin of Las Rocinas was appointed patron Saint of Almonte.
Expanding on this tradition of travelling to the church of La Virgen del Rocio, the newly-envisaged Camino al Rocío or Destino Rocío has been called El Camino de Santiago ‘Andalucian style’. However, it has little to do with Santiago de Compostela in north-west Spain – but is nonetheless a ‘religious’ Camino.
There are eight different routes connecting the eight provinces of Andalucía with this devotional focus located in Huelva.
The Almería route (officially called ‘Ruta Nazarí’) has two starting points: One from Cabo de Gata (close to the capital Almería city itself) and another from Los Vélez towards Baza. They both meet up in Guadix and, from there, the path goes through Granada, Antequera, Ronda, Arcos, Jerez de la Frontera, and Sanlúcar to cross the Guadalquivir river, and through the great park of Doñana to reach the village of El Rocío. [Other Andalusian routes are: The Olive Grove Route (which begins in the Sierra de Cazorla); the Sierra Morena Route (which starts in Las Navas, Jaén); the Valle de los Pedroches Route (from Pozoblanco); the Aguardiente Route (from Belalcázar); the Silver Route, the Ham and Fandango Route (from the Sierra de Aracena) and the Gibraltar Route (from Algeciras)].
It is hoped that this new Camino al Rocío or “Destino Rocío”, will have a wide network of signposted paths – in the simple ‘yellow arrow’ style that guides pilgrims to the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela along the more traditional “Way of St James” to the north.
What to buy a Camino walker – Faith jewellery?
See Faith Jewellery and Camino gift ideas in our shop that could be ideal: