How to get a Camino Pilgrim Passport ?

The Camino de Santiago, also known as the Way of St James, is a network of pilgrimages to the shrine of the apostle Saint James in the cathedral of Santiago de Compostela in Galicia, northern Spain.

Every year thousands of pilgrims from all corners of the world embark on this spiritual journey and central to this experience is the Camino Pilgrim Passport, also known as a ‘Credential’

To document their progress every Pilgrim needs to have a Camino Pilgrim Passport which enables them to receive a completion certificate, called a credential, at the end of their Camino in Santiago de Compostela.

In this article, we will cover everything you need to know about the Camino Pilgrim Passport, from its purpose and appearance to how and where you can obtain it, the significance of collecting stamps, and more.

Table of Contents

What is a Camino Pilgrim Passport

The Camino Pilgrim Passport, also known as a Credencial del Peregrino, is a document that certifies a pilgrim’s journey along any of  the Camino de Santiago’s many pilgrimage routes. 

It serves as a pilgrim’s identification and proof that they are walking the Camino trail with spiritual, religious or leisure intentions.

It is a record of the places where each pilgrim has stayed and the distances covered as well places visited such as bars, cafes and churches.

The passport is a requirement for those who wish to stay in albergues (pilgrim hostels) along the route, where pilgrims find the most affordable accommodation.

What does a Camino de Santiago Pilgrim Passport look like ?

The Camino Pilgrim Passport is a small booklet usually measuring around 4×6 inches when closed. It is made of durable paper or cardboard and typically contains 32 to 48 pages.

The cover of the passport may display the official emblem of the Camino de Santiago, and inside, you’ll find spaces for stamps and official notes from the places you visit along the pilgrimage.

Some passports have a page with the Camino pilgrim blessing and prayer, which were first published in the 12th century Codex Calixtinus.

The passport contains blank pages where pilgrims can collect stamps, also known as sellos, from various establishments along the routes of the Camino de Santiago.

These include the following places:

  • Cafes
  • Albergues
  • Bars
  • Churches
  • Museums
  • Shops
  • lots of other places too
blank camino pilgrim passport
blank camino pilgrim passport

Where do I get a Camino Pilgrim Passport

Obtaining a Credential is really easy. There are several places where a pilgrim can obtain a Camino Pilgrim Passport. One of the most common places is at the starting point of some of the Camino routes. 

The Pilgrim office in Saint Jean Pied du Port at the start of the Camino Frances is a great example of somewhere to get your Camino Passport when walking the Camino Frances.

On the Camino Portuguese In Porto, for example, pilgrims can obtain a passport at the Cathedral, where they will also receive a sello or stamp to start them on their way. 

Tourist offices in Porto do not issue Pilgrim Passports, so it’s important to visit the right place to get one.

Many churches and tourist offices sell passports to pilgrims and you can also get them from various Pilgrim associations and websites around the world such as:

It’s always a good idea to get your Camino passport before you start your Camino and if you don’t have an association to get one from you can always get one from the Camino de Santiago forum. They cost around $2-3 each.

It’s important to note that there are different types of Camino Pilgrim Passports available. Some pilgrim associations offer passports in different languages, while others offer special passports for cyclists or those who are walking a specific route. 

Pilgrims should ensure that they obtain the correct passport for their needs.

Overall, obtaining a Camino Pilgrim Passport is an essential part of the Camino de Santiago experience. Pilgrims should ensure that they get one before starting their journey to avoid any issues with accommodation along the way.

The passport is not just a document but a symbol of the pilgrim’s commitment to the journey and the Camino’s values of simplicity, community, and spirituality. It is a tangible reminder of the pilgrim’s experience and a treasured souvenir of their journey.

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Why is it called a Credencial ?

The term “Credencial” comes from the Spanish language, and it translates to “credential” or “identification”. 

It has its origins in the ‘safe conduct’ letters that were given to pilgrims in the Middle Ages before they embarked on their pilgrimage to Santiago.

The name reflects the passport’s purpose as a pilgrim’s identification and authentication of their journey along the Camino de Santiago.

The Pilgrim Passport or Credencial is the official accreditation that identifies us as Camino pilgrims and where we can record our own personal journey. 

Why do I need to collect stamps in my passport

Collecting stamps is an integral part of the Camino de Santiago experience. They act as evidence of your journey and the places you visited along the way.

To obtain a Compostela, the official certificate of completion of the Camino, a pilgrim must walk at least 100 kilometers (about 62 miles) or cycle at least 200 kilometers (about 124 miles) and collect stamps along the way. 

The stamps are used to prove that the pilgrim has completed the journey and visited significant places along the route. The general rule of thumb is to collect 2 stamps per day.

The passport also serves as a record of the pilgrim’s journey,and is a cherished memento of the pilgrimage and a symbol of the pilgrim’s commitment to the Camino.

You will need to have your Camino pilgrim passport with all the stamps required if you’d like to request a Compostela certificate or a Certificate of Distance at the Pilgrims Office in Santiago de Compostela, having completed your journey.

How many stamps does a Camino Passport hold ?

Camino Pilgrim Passports typically have enough space for dozens of stamps. The exact number of stamps a passport can hold varies, but it usually ranges from 50 to 60 stamps.

The longer you walk the more stamps you will get. The locals providing the ‘sellos’ will always stamp and make space for you to get a full Credencial ahead of completion.

How heavy is a Pilgrim Passport

The weight of the Camino Passport varies depending on the type of passport, the issuing association and the number of stamps it contains. 

The standard passport issued by the Pilgrim’s Office in Santiago de Compostela weighs around 30 grams. However, some pilgrims choose to use a more substantial passports, which can weigh up to 100 grams. 

While this may not seem like a lot, every gram counts when you are carrying all your belongings on your back for weeks on end.

What does a completed Pilgrim Passport look like ?

A completed Camino Pilgrim Passport is a cherished memento of your pilgrimage. 

It will be filled with colorful stamps from various locations along your route, each telling a unique story of your journey and the people you met. 

Here’s a picture of my full Camino pilgrim passport.

Camino Pilgrim passport
Camino Pilgrim passport

What to do with your Passport when you get home

After walking the Camino de Santiago the euphoria after 28 days was amazing. I packed my Camino passport (credential) and Compostela (completion certificate) into my backpack in a safe place and celebrated in style.

I didn’t actually look at the documents again for a few weeks as life after the Camino was difficult. Walking became the norm for a month and then it just stopped. be prepared for this when you get home.

I have seen a lot of people frame their certificates and they look amazing. A real testament to the journey and something to relish those memories forever, so I would consider doing this.


The Camino Pilgrim Passport is more than just a travel document; it is a symbol of one’s spiritual and personal quest along the Camino de Santiago. 

From its humble appearance to the significance of collecting stamps, the passport holds immense value for pilgrims on this transformative journey. 

So, if you’re planning to embark on the Camino, remember to obtain your Camino Pilgrim Passport and let it be your companion throughout this remarkable pilgrimage of self-discovery and growth. 

Buen Camino!

Camino Frances Planner & Journal

Camino Frances Planner & Journal

  • Track your progress and preparation
  • Town by town mileage details
  • Expenses tracker
  • Training tracker
  • Daily journal and log
  • Empty pages for stamps

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I have developed a simple lightweight Camino packing list after walking The Camino de Santiago numerous times. If you want to travel with a lightweight pack this is the packing list for you.

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