Duke Catholic Center
World Youth Day
Lisbon, Fatima & El Camino
Pilgrimage Leader: Sister Frances Zajac, F.S.E.
July 25 - August 7, 2023
Lisbon (St. Anthony) · Santarem (Eucharistic Miracle) · Fatima · Sintra · Mata Beach
Your trip includes
- Round-trip airfare to Lisbon (including Airport Taxes and Fuel Surcharges)
- Accommodations in Lisbon Hotel in double occupancy
- Transfers as per itinerary
- Breakfast daily at Hotel
- WYD Vouchers (Lunch and Dinners daily)
- Mineral Water with Meals
- Transportation by air-conditioned motor coach
- Tour Guide Throughout
- Sightseeing and Admission Fees
- World Youth Day Registration Fees (Vouchers, Booklets, Transportation, Insurance, and Pilgrim Kit)
- Catholic Priest, Mass daily & Spiritual activities
- Spiritual Director
- Meals and beverages not mentioned, Tips to your guide & driver.
Day 1: Tuesday - July 25 - USA - Madrid
Depart from Newark for your overnight flight(s) to Lisbon. Dinner and breakfast will be served on board.
Day 2: Wednesday - July 26 - Arrival Madrid - Foncebadon - Iron Cross - Ocebrerio - Sarria
Upon arrival in Madrid, you will collect your luggage in the baggage claim area, and continue to the Arrival's Hall where you will be greeted by your driver. We will then transfer to Sarria. Sarria is located in the northwest of Spain and is noted for being the entry point to the oriental side of the region, Galicia. Your transfer will end and you will begin on foot from Foncebadon. In the eleventh century, this village was a common resting place for pilgrims on El Camino due to its hospitals, hospice, and church. Currently, the structures that have served so many are now in ruins. While in Foncebadon, you will walk to view the "Iron Cross." This Cross is a common pausing place for pilgrims as they leave a stone at the foot of the cross to symbolize a sin or burden that they are leaving behind. Your tour continues as you leave your burdens behind and continue onward to the village nestled in the mountains, O Cebreiro. Many pilgrims pause at this site due to the Eucharistic Miracle that occurred in the year 1300. Additionally, be sure to have your cameras ready as this village is suspended 1,300 meters in the air and provides a breathtaking panoramic view. Your first walking day culminates with a delicious meal and an overnight in Sarria.
Day 3: Thursday - July 27 - Sarria - Portomarin
Today is the day that your walking pilgrimage (El Camino) to Santiago de Compostela officially begins! With the guidance of Our Lord, and through the spirit of St. James the apostle, you will become an authentic pilgrim by journeying along the physical road, as well as, the spiritual one. Your first official day of walking will culminate in Portomarin. This town dates back to the Roman Ages and was an important halt along the route in the Middle Ages. Due to the creation of a dam in 1962, the Old Portomarin is currently underneath the Mino River. As a result of the dam creation, many of the old buildings were moved, brick by brick. Among these buildings is the Church of St. John of Jerusalem. In Medieval Times, this church was strategically set along the route of El Camino in order to protect the tomb of Santiago. At Portomarin, you will enjoy dinner followed by an overnight.
Day 4: Friday - July 28 - Portomarin - Palas de Rei
This morning, you will enjoy breakfast at your hotel and journey from Portomarin, through the woods to the Palas de Rei. This was a noteworthy town in the Middle Ages, as it contained a Royal Hospital and the church of St. Tirso. As the rugged walk continues, you will continue through fields, forests, and granaries. Additionally, you will see a prominent characteristic of Galician Landscape, Los Cruceiros. These wayside crosses depict Christ and the Virgin Mary. Dinner and enjoy a restful overnight in Palas de Rei.
Day 5: Saturday - July 29 - Palas de Rei - Arzua
Breakfast will be served at your hotel. Your pilgrimage continues as you will travel from Palas de Rei to the bustling small town of Arzua. Before arriving in Arzua, your group will stop at Melide. This town is a crucial point of El Camino because it is where the French and Oviedo routes converge. Upon arrival in Melide, you will notice the old roads that date back to the fourteenth century, which are some of the oldest in the region of Galicia. After lunch, you will leave the Lugo province and enter into the province of A Coruna. As your group continues to Arzua, you will cross the beautiful, medieval bridge over the Iso River to Ribadiso. Following your visit to this Chapel, your day will culminate with the arrival in Arzua, where you will enjoy dinner and an overnight.
Day 6: Sunday - July 30 - Arzua - Arca de O Pino
Your journey is almost over as you walk to the largest community before Santiago, Arca de O Pino! Upon walking this route, you will immerse yourselves in the fragrant eucalyptus groves and experience the breathtaking scenery. At a point throughout your walk, you will stop and enjoy a picnic lunch. Following lunch, you will continue your journey and arrive in Arca de O Pino. As you explore this village, you will notice joy etched on the faces of the pilgrims. Although they have traveled a long distance, they are not weary. With God and St. James guiding their paths, excitement and anticipation continues for their arrival in Santiago. Overnight back in Arzua.
Day 7: Monday - July 31 - Arzua - Monte do Gozo - Santiago de Compostela
Today, you will culminate the walking portion of your journey! Before arriving at your final destination, you will first stop for Mass on Mount Joy (Monte del Gozo). You will know that you are approaching Santiago because, at this point, you will be able to see the spires of the Cathedral. Following lunch, you will complete your walking journey and arrive at the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela. Upon arrival, feel free to say a small prayer in thanksgiving to Our Lord for keeping you safe throughout the walking pilgrimage. At this time, you will check-in to your hotel and enjoy free time to explore Galicia's capital, Santiago. This evening you will enjoy a marvelous dinner, followed by a very restful overnight in Santiago de Compostela.
Day 8: Tuesday - August 1 - Santiago de Compostela - Lisbon and prepare for World Youth Day week
This morning you will awaken in the beautiful city of Santiago de Compostela! Formed by Galician granite, the Cathedral is one of the finest architectural examples in Europe as it encompasses Romanesque, Gothic and Baroque styles. Additionally, the Cathedral contains numerous and valuable pieces of art that truly captivate the eye. Upon entering the Cathedral, the tradition will lead as you will hug the dazzling statue of St. James. Following this intimate embrace, you will descend into the crypt where the Patron Saint of Pilgrims' relics is kept. Following your visit, you will enjoy free time for lunch on own before your sightseeing tour of the city. Some stops on your tour include the Obradoiro Square, Fonseca Palace, Gelmirez Palace, Franco Street, and much more. You will have a little time to spend at your own leisure before you board your bus and begin to make your way to Lisbon. Upon arrival, you will check-in at the hotel, attend the World Youth Day Mass, and enjoy a welcoming dinner followed by a restful overnight.
*World Youth Day begins this evening with Mass
Day 9: Wednesday - August 2: World Youth Day Lisbon - Santarem - Fatima - Lisbon
Today, we will head to Fatima, on the way will stop in town of Santarem for Mass at St. Stephens Church, and to venerate the 13th Century Eucharistic Miracle. Continue to Fatima, a Hamlet of Aljustrel, the birthplace and home of the three (3) shepherd children. Here we will pray and meditate upon one of Our Blessed Mother's apparition sites. Our Lady appeared to three shepherd children; Lucia (age 10), Jacinta (age 7), and Francisco (age 9). These apparitions occurred monthly from May until October of 1917. Historically, as the entire world was in true turmoil, Our Lady's most prominent message during this time was to pray for world peace. The destruction of the world at that point in history was also mentioned by Our Lady in her messages of Fatima, and more specifically, in her second secret to the children. Our profoundly reflective day begins with a visit to the Little Chapel of the Apparitions. This simple, yet modern, chapel is the site where the Virgin Mary first appeared on May 13, 1917. Continue with a visit to the stunning neoclassical church, the Basilica of Our Lady of the Rosary. This Sacred space contains the tombs of St. Francisco, St. Jacinta, and Sister Lucia. View the monument that commemorates the Sacred Heart of Jesus, in the square. Due to Our Lady's consistency in Her messages to pray the Rosary, this Basilica also features fifteen altars, dedicated to the fifteen mysteries of the Rosary. While in the Basilica, you will be able to feel, through the Love of Our Lord and Lady, the many graces that were received here. Visit the Museum and exhibition "Fatima: Light and Peace". Continue with a visit to the Holy Trinity Basilica. After lunch, we will experience Christ's unconditional love by participating in the Stations of the Cross along the Via Sacra. The "Sacred Way" marks the path taken by the shepherd children of Fatima to their first apparition with Our Lady. It is composed of fifteen (15) small Chapels in commemoration of the Passion of Our Lord. The fifteenth station, the Resurrection, can be found close to the Chapel of Calvary, dedicated to St. Stephen, King of Hungary. The day ends with a visit to Valinhos, the site of Our Lady's August 1917 apparition, and the first and third apparition of the Angel. Your night will conclude by returning to Lisbon for dinner and overnight.
*This evening we will participate in organized World Your Day events as scheduled.
Day 10: Thursday, August 3: World Youth Day Lisbon
Today World Youth Day participants will have Catechesis Sessions with Bishops taking place at Churches and Schools throughout Lisbon. In the evening you will make your way to Park Eduardo for the "Welcoming Ceremony" with our Holy Father! Return to your Hotel for a restful nights sleep.
*"Welcoming Ceremony" with Pope Francis!
Day 11: Friday, August 4: World Youth Day Lisbon - Sintra - Lisbon
Following breakfast, we will make our way to the picturesque town of Sintra, a charming example of a Portuguese town where there are cobbled streets and traditional painted buildings fill with family operated cafes and unique shops. While there, we will explore its extravagant Palaces, ancient Castles, and incredible scenery. We will also stop by the pretty Church of Ingreja de Santa Maria, before some free time, and then continue back to Lisbon in order to participate in the Via Crucis. This evening will conclude with dinner and overnight.
*This afternoon enjoy organized World Youth Day events and the Stations of the Cross
Day 12: Saturday - August 5: World Youth Day - Lisbon
Continue another day of experiencing the World Youth Day and its events. This evening we will take part in the "Pilgrim Walk" where all pilgrims will walk to Park Tejo to participate in the Evening Prayer Vigil with our Holy Father. Followed by dinner and overnight at your Hotel.
*Pilgrimage Walk, Evening Prayer Vigil and Adoration with the Holy Father.
Day 13: Sunday - August 6: World Youth Day Lisbon - Closing Mass - Mata Beach
Today we'll attend World Youth Day Mass of Sending which will take place at Park Tejo. This morning the Pope will concelebrate Mass with thousands of Bishops and Priests, and he will address young people, and those who are not so young, to send them out to the world to witness their faith, as the Lord did with his Apostles. After, we will walk back to the Hotel to freshen up, and then board our Bus and make our way to Mato Beach - one of Portugal's famous beaches For the remainder of the day, you will have free time to spend at your own leisure in Lisbon, followed by your final Dinner and overnight.
*World Youth Day "Closing Ceremony".
Day 14: Monday - August 7: Lisbon - Return Home
This morning we leave Lisbon for our return flight(s) home. We will bid farewell to our new friends and to a World Youth Day experience that will be in our hearts and minds for many years to come.
About your trip
The Shrine of Our Lady of Fatima is one of most famous Marian shrines in the world. 4 million Pilgrims visit Fatima each year! Many are drawn by the apparitions of the Virgin Mary to the three local shepherd children, in 1917. The Blessed Virgin Mary appeared to the shepherd children on the 13th day of six consecutive months in 1917, starting on May 13th until October 13th. The events at Fatima gained fame due to their elements of prophecy and eschatology, particularly with regard to possible world war and the conversion of Russia.