- 1 The Way (dir. Emilio Estevez)
- 2 Walking the Camino: Six Ways to Santiago (dir: Lydia B. Smith)
- 3 The Unlikely Pilgrims (dir: Kirsten Mallyon)
- 4 I’ll Push You (dir: Christopher Karcher, Terry Parish)
- 5 Are You A Pilgrim? (dir: Gian D Ceccato)
- 6 Mi Camino de Santiago (Camino Frances) (dir: David Farenbaugh)
- 7 Camino de Santiago, A Walker’s Guide
- 8 A Way To Forgiveness – Healing On The Camino de Santiago (dir: Erin Dooley)
- 9 Camino de Santiago – A Spiritual Journey (dir: Plamen Simeonov)
- 10 Pilgrimages of Europe: Santiago de Compostela, Spain
- 11 The Pilgrimage
- 12 Travel Light (dir: Lindsay Thompson)
- 13 Strangers On The Earth (dir: Tristan Cook)
- 14 Spain’s Pilgrim Trail: Leon to Santiago, by Fran West
- 15 Camino, The Journey To Santiago (dir: Matthew Nothelfer, Alicia Wszelaki)
- 16 Six Million Steps: A Journey Inward (dir: Will Oxley)
The Camino de Santiago influences and inspires walkers to hike its peaks and pastures every single day. But it also influences artists across many mediums, including filmmakers. In this article, we present you with a selection of the best movies made about the Camino de Santiago.
If you want a movie to inspire you, inform you, or recall when you obtained your very own pilgrim passport, there’s a movie for you here. We feature dramas, documentaries, short films and more.
The Way (dir. Emilio Estevez)
Perhaps the most famous Camino movie, this one is a classic.
Martin Sheen plays a father who decides to honour his deceased son by walking the Camino. After his son dies while walking the pilgrimage, his father chooses to complete the hike on his behalf.
This movie was created by the real-life father-son duo of Martin Sheen and Emilio Estevez, which adds authenticity to its messages. It’s a fantastic insight into the sentimental, spiritual aspects of the Camino, and how many people use the walk as a personal reflection.
Walking the Camino: Six Ways to Santiago (dir: Lydia B. Smith)
This fantastic documentary profiles six pilgrims walking the Camino.
The documentary considers why they’re walking, where they’re walking and how they feel throughout the process.
Again, this is packed with spirituality and humanity. It’s a really touching piece of filmmaking, both inspiring and melancholic.
If you like realism and sensitivity, this movie has exactly that. You experience the highs, lows, struggles and achievements of each walker just as they experience them. And the cinematography is beautiful.
The Unlikely Pilgrims (dir: Kirsten Mallyon)
Another fantastic documentary, this one follows a group of recovering drug addicts as they take on the pilgrimage route.
This is a very intimate movie, which shares the stories, struggles and details of the pilgrims featured. It’s intimate almost to the point of intrusion, which some may find uncomfortable – but others will find compelling.
The movie is a fascinating insight into using the Camino as a tool for personal growth. For a take that’s even more personal than the typical Camino tale, this is excellent.
I’ll Push You (dir: Christopher Karcher, Terry Parish)
A really beautiful portrayal of friendship and faith in humanity, this documentary chronicles two friends who traveled the Camino. But they didn’t both walk.
Justin, who is battling a neuromuscular disease, is pushed the whole way, in his wheelchair, by his lifelong best friend.
This is a wonderful portrayal of dedication, love, and perseverance. Both men talk openly about the struggles of their lives. It’s a movie that is both uplifting and bittersweet and touches hugely upon the greater meaning the Camino can have.
Are You A Pilgrim? (dir: Gian D Ceccato)
Directed by the man whose story this is, this is a movie about a 71-year-old man who took the walk to feel closer to God.
Along the way, that’s exactly what happens. And he finds his faith in humanity restored, as he finds friendship and inspiration in the people he meets along the way.
It’s a fairly standard documentary around the walk, but it centers itself mainly around older people, which brings with it questions and topics unaddressed by other Camino movies and documentaries.
Mi Camino de Santiago (Camino Frances) (dir: David Farenbaugh)
If you’re specifically interested in the French Way, this is a great way to learn about it. Part documentary, part instruction manual on what you’ll need for the trip, it chronicles an 800km trek.
If you’re equally interested in logistics and storytelling, this is a great movie, since most others focus more on the latter.
Camino de Santiago, A Walker’s Guide
This one is in the style of a home movie, which many will love. It doesn’t have the polish or drama of others on this list, but it’s a great no-frills account of a husband and wife’s journey along the hike.
It includes lots of practical information about where to stay and how long to walk each day. This has a charm and spirit of its own – a lovely lo-fi movie.
A Way To Forgiveness – Healing On The Camino de Santiago (dir: Erin Dooley)
A lovely insight into the phenomenon of forgiveness, this 45-minute documentary follows a recently-divorced woman as she walks the Camino to heal herself and her state of mind.
It’s a movie heavily rooted in the Christian faith, and it’s more devoted to the themes of forgiveness than it is chronicling the walk itself. For those interested in the spiritual aspects of the Camino (and the walk as a religious pilgrimage) this is a great documentary.
Camino de Santiago – A Spiritual Journey (dir: Plamen Simeonov)
Another spiritual documentary, this one digs deep into the history and mythology of the walk, with references to Alchemists and The Knights Templar. It explores spirituality and the walk itself in equal measure.
This documentary only features interviews with men, which is somewhat strange.
Pilgrimages of Europe: Santiago de Compostela, Spain
This is another low-fi entry and will appeal to those who like an old-school documentary style. If you want a laid-back gentle documentary movie, you’ll love this one.
It doesn’t have the drama, intricacy or uniqueness of others on this list, but that is absolutely part of its charm. It’s only 28 minutes long, which will appeal to some – it’s a good, brief, no-drama introduction to the walk.
Another short movie, this comes in at a brief 26 minutes. It’s a truly heartwarming chronicle of two brothers who take the walk together – and how taking a break from modern life can provide fantastic mental respite.
Together, they go on a hunt for adventure, inner wisdom and peace of mind. Throughout, they discuss their lives, memories, hopes and dreams. This documentary focuses beautifully on what it means to walk the Camino with loved ones.
Travel Light (dir: Lindsay Thompson)
In this documentary, four young American filmmakers talk about their motivations for doing the walk and chat to other pilgrims about their own reasons.
The hikers are younger than most other Camino trekkers, which gives this one a unique angle, and the cinematography is beautiful. This documentary is an excellent personal project, rather than a big-budget epic.
Strangers On The Earth (dir: Tristan Cook)
A great documentary for music lovers, this combines the music of Bach with the views of the Camino.
It chronicles the trip of an American cellist, who undertook the hike with his cello on the back, routinely playing the instrument along the way.
Spain’s Pilgrim Trail: Leon to Santiago, by Fran West
This is another short entry on this list. It’s 27 minutes in length and isn’t a typical movie. Instead, this one features a collection of photographs from the walk.
It’s basically a slideshow of photographs, which though unusual, might appeal to those who love beautiful photography.
Camino, The Journey To Santiago (dir: Matthew Nothelfer, Alicia Wszelaki)
The briefest on this list at only 23 minutes, this one is an impressionistic piece of filmmaking which isn’t quite as literal as most other entries on this list.
If you’re looking for a straightforward movie or documentary, this is not it. But if you appreciate artistic flourishes, you’ll enjoy this. It matches up music with imagery in a wonderful way. There’s no narrative here, but there’s plenty of beauty.
It also features a small section that is shot in Asia.
Six Million Steps: A Journey Inward (dir: Will Oxley)
The above isn’t the only entry that takes you to places other than the Camino. This feature doesn’t focus on the Camino at all, but rather on the Pacific Crest Trail, which runs almost 4300km along the length of the US Pacific coast from Mexico to Canada.
If you’re wondering why this movie is on the list, it’s for two major reasons. Firstly, it’s a big favorite of mine.
But more importantly than that, the parallels with the Camino are incredible. All of the hikers interviewed in this movie discuss the spiritual healing properties of tackling such a huge physical task. It’s another movie that proves the healing power of hiking… and the beautiful views involved in such a trip!
Paul McDougal is a hiker and virtual nomad from the UK. His background is in creative writing. He uses the freelance life to live remotely and is currently in Vietnam. He has hiked all over the UK and is now doing the same around the world.