Elliot Perry, Berkeley, California

How a guy from California found Porto?

I did the «Caminho de Santiago», with my best friend for 33 days. I started in France, crossing the country to the coast, that’s like over 700km and I did that and all the pilgrims were like: «Oh we are going to Porto to celebrate!». And one of my parents had been here before doing the «Caminho Português» and said that Porto was her favorite city!

Tell us more about the «Caminho»

I think the Caminho is of the most unique trips that you can do. And one of the best ways for you to see a country. I think a lot of people just go to the big cities in a country and then, they are like «I’ve been through this country!» for example, «Oh I’ve been into France so, I know all about Paris!» You know? But you don’t really understand the countryside and the actual community like walking through it and reaching to new bigger cities or even smaller cities and see all the history.

You pay low prices to stay in a hostel and you get cheap food but really good the all way. The difference between this and the normal backpacking trip is you create more of a community because everybody does it at the same pace so you see all the same people every day, and you can make a lot of friends. I think just walking and having that job for the all the day is a very nice way to open your mind a little bit and clear stress. You just wake up and you’re like: I’m gonna walk and it’s gonna be hard but I get clear on my thoughts and just be out on nature for like 4 hours and relax the rest of the day.

You make us wanna do the Caminho!

(smiles) Yeah, I recommend it to everyone because it’s so fun! And the people that you met! I made some close friends from Italy, France and Ireland!

My best recommendation for «Caminho de Santiago» is: pack and don’t have expectations, be open-minded! Understand that everybody is on the same level as you. You sit to dinner with people from everywhere, every kind of. I had 2€ dinner with a guy who owns multi-millionaire restaurants in France… so everybody’s is about the community that comes together, it’s beautiful!