They say that a journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.

When you walk the Camino de Santiago in Spain, the journey begins with a day-long hike through the Pyrenees, starting in France, ending hours later in Spain. Most pilgrims continue to Santiago de Compostela, another 790km away.

My son and I wanted to be like most pilgrims, even though our plan was just to walk for another two days, ending in Pamplona. We climbed high into the mountains and came down through a thick forest, arriving late afternoon. But my feet were covered in blisters and I was sunburned to a crisp. We hailed a cab to Pamplona.

Even though we didn’t keep walking, for the rest of my life I can tell people about the day I walked through the Pyrenees with my son: in the footsteps of Charlemagne, St. Francis of Assisi, and Napoleon.

Below you can find a guide to Camino de Santiago by our friend Anne Born.