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Walking the Camino: Cross or No Cross?

Updated: Mar 31, 2023


A cross against a dawn sky.
The first cross I saw

When deciding on the cover of my book, Walking the Camino, I included the image of a cross. Some potential readers expressed concern that the cross may be misleading, as not all pilgrims on the Camino de Santiago are religious - including me. However, as the Camino is a Christian pilgrimage route, you see many crosses and other religious symbols as you walk.


Although my own Camino journeys were not religious, the Cruz de Ferro (Iron Cross) was a significant part of my pilgrimage. Pilgrims carry a stone symbolising a burden they wish to leave behind at the cross, and the question of my burden became important to me.




The Iron Cross on the Camino de Santiago with the sun behind it
the Cruz de Ferro - Iron Cross

The cover of Walking the Camino, featuring a hiker walking towards a cross
The (almost) final cover choice

In the end, I decided to keep the cross on the cover. While it may not appeal to all readers, it accurately represents the Camino de Santiago and my own journey.

What do you think? Was I right - should I have left the cross on the cover? Please let me know in the comments below.












Update 31/03/2023

The final cover choice with Camino waymarker instead of a cross

Further to Neil's suggestion in the comments, I asked my cover designer to try adding the Camino waymarker into the design instead of the cross. I am pleased with the result and have decided to change the cover, so this is the one you'll see for sale.


Thanks, Neil, for your input!

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6 Comments


Neil Pitts
Neil Pitts
Mar 27, 2023

The cross is an iconic image of the Camino. Regardless of your personal beliefs it links the title to the image. The only image more iconic is perhaps the shell symbol. Maybe that would be a good alternative.

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Replying to

Good idea. Now I need to consider whether to go back to my designer...

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Ronald Turnbull
Ronald Turnbull
Mar 27, 2023

Well you've put a soul into the subtitle. So you've already confirmed that atheists like me aren't going to go for it! I am rather wondering who walks with their fingers like that, though.

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Replying to

I'm an atheist too...maybe you'd enjoy it! And don't you wave at the worms as you walk? 😂

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