Arriving in Santiago was bitter-sweet. It was sad that after all this time, our journey was at an end. It also felt disenchanting: we had this beautiful, life-changing pilgrimage only to arrive in a crowded city where camino gift stores lined the streets, wait in line for our Compostela, and feel like just a number in their booming tourist economy. We heard that a lot of the other people who we met along the Northern Route had arrived the night before, and feeling the same disenchantment, left as soon as they could book a train or bus out of there. As far as our Primitivo friends, we saw several of them at the bus station with us that afternoon we arrived. We all walked in, collected our certificates, saw the Cathedral of St. James (The huge line to get in) and left.
We wanted to go to Finisterre, or the end of the known world, but we looked at the wrong day of buses and missed the last one just minutes before getting to the bus station. So we decided to go to Muxia instead. Along the camino, many people talked about how enchanting that city was. It’s the legendary city of the arrival of a stone boat. It depends which lore you read, some say that it was a boat that carried the Virgin Mary to help St. James spread Christianity across the region, others say it was a stone boat that carried St. James remains after he was beheaded by the hands of the Romans. Either way, the rocky beach is supposed to be the remains of that stone boat, and a church is built over those rocks, several yards from the water.
Muxia is one of the most beautiful and lovely cities I’ve ever been to. It was exactly the spiritual ending I was hoping for to wrap up the Camino Journey. Again, there were very few pilgrims, most end up in Finisterre (Which we hear has turned into Disneyland part II, Very crowded), and Muxia still feels like a secret. I want to recommend Muxia, but I also don’t want it to become a crowded tourist mess like Santiago. I hope it stays peaceful and quiet for years to come.