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Jacobean Years and the Camino de Santiago

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Jacobean Years

Jacobean Years on the Camino de Santiago

Image: Damian Corrigan
Find out about the Jacobean Year, an important event on the Camino de Santiago.

What is a Jacobean Year?

A Jacobean Year (known in Spanish as Año Santo Jacobeo, in Galician as Ano Santo Xacobeo and sometimes referred to in English as a Jubilee Year, Holy Compostellan Year or just Holy Year) is when St James's Day (July 25) falls on a Sunday.

See also: When to Do the Camino de Santiago

When Are the Next Jacobean Years?

The following years are Jacobean years:
  • 2010
  • 2021
  • 2027
  • 2032

What Happens in a Jacobean Year?

For Catholics, visiting Santiago de Compostela in a Jacobean year is a very important event.
  • If they fulfill all the necessary requirements, Catholics will receive a 'plenary indulgence' upon visiting the cathedral in Santiago de Compostela.
  • The Puerta Santa (Holy Door) in the Santiago de Compostela cathedral, normally closed, is open for the whole of the year.

But the main way you'll see it's a Jacobean year is that there will be huge numbers of pilgrims on the Camino de Santiago. Numbers more than triple in a Jacobean year, with a huge concentration around St James's Day in particular. This means that walking in late June and July will see an even more competitive battle for hostel beds than usual.

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