In a world where there are so many inclusive events that allow disabled persons to be entwined in society, going on religious Caminos is a different story. For a disabled person who wants to get the Certificado, they are required to be able to travel the last 100kms in a wheelchair, riding or walking. While the cathedral in Compostela is alright with the carrying of luggage and using motorised chairs, they do require that patrons have the motivation to complete the Camino itself.
In fact, the pilgrim office at the cathedral recorded at least 43 persons who arrived there in a wheelchair. The number is accurate because those who need wheelchair access or help with carrying their luggage for the last 100kms would need to email the office shortly before they arrive at the cathedral. Thanks to the new venue of the pilgrims’ office, there is now more access to persons with disabilities.
Stay when you are disabled can be tough. For those who wish to stay in private hotels or private fancier Albergues, there is no problem as most of them have access to wheelchairs. However, the more affordable places don has wheelchair access and is difficult for everyone to access. Some places would be able to accommodate people if they inform the hotel/rest area about their arrival well in advance. Also, note that many of the rest areas do not allow for pilgrims who use any sort of help to transport their belongings. While it might seem very unfair to be subject to such terms, when you look at it from the rest area perspective, many pilgrims carry hefty bags and are tired through the day. The rest area is the only place they can rejuvenate, and it is not fair to everyone to allow access to people who have had help on the pilgrimage.
The best way to ensure that you can find accommodation quickly is by calling the places where you wish to stay well in advance and booking for a place. If possible and feasible, the best solution would be an expensive hotel, but otherwise, an advance booking is in order. Find out about the admission policies in the places and a list of the facilities that they have when you book a resting home. Numerous tourist offices in the locality would be able to give you the information that you require.
Maps and trails that are best suited for disabled patrons are also available at the tourism offices. A list of all the accessible buildings and areas in the pilgrimage is available along with general advice about accessibility. Transportation to the cathedral for disabled persons will require some planning, and there are a couple of places that offer solutions with a wealth of information online. Some organisations also provide disability and elderly pilgrim financial assistance to complete the pilgrimage. It is worth finding out the details of the support you can receive beforehand as well.