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A dozen security measures surround visit to the porch of Glory .

2020 Camino Guides

Peter Fransiscus

Be a Rainbow in someone else's cloud.
Camino(s) past & future
All that we are is the result of what we have thought.
A dozen security measures surround visits to the porch of Glory
Three cameras, eight guards and a list of banned objects safeguard their integrity

SANTIAGO / AGENCY 08/11/2018 05:00 H

Thousands of people have agreed in just two weeks to the portico of Glory, a monument whose restoration has spent ten years of meticulous work by an international team and millions of euros. To safeguard the integrity of the sculptural ensemble during the tourist visits, a security device has been installed around it. In practice, a dozen measures are being applied around the work of maestro Mateo.
The list of vetoed objects includes a dozen articles. Although both in the brochure that is given to each visitor and in the informative poster installed in the Obradoiro it is indicated that it will not be possible to access with backpacks, only it is prevented to enter with the larger ones (that is, those used by people who make the way). There is, a few meters from the access point to the Portico, a slogan in Correos and another in the Pilgrim's Office; although they are allowing themselves to be left in the first control (on the staircase) and to be picked up when leaving. Small backpacks, bags and the like are checked at the entrance; as is also being done at the main entrance to the basilica.

On rainy days, visitors must take into account that raincoats, umbrellas or other wet clothes are not allowed, as they can introduce humidity into the surroundings of the monument. In fact, if the weather requires it, bootees will be given so that the footwear does not drag elements from the outside. The measure was not applied until now, but it was ready, and even a carpet was available for this purpose.
The photos, neither with flash nor without him
Canes and other bulky objects that can be hit must be left out. Nor is it allowed to put food or drink in the hand, only if it is carried in a small bag (or similar), which will be checked. Photos and videos can only be made on the terrace of the stairway. Inside, neither with flash nor without it, for reasons of conservation; a customary measure in museums and installations of this type. In the interior, it is strictly forbidden to touch the Porch, something that the staff insists on, not even to get close to the doors to rest the feet; as well as smoking or using the mobile.


inRead invented by Teads

To ensure compliance with the rules, eight security guards accompany visitors throughout the tour. At the foot of the steps of the Obradoiro, where the line is formed to access (in order of arrival, between eight and ten in the morning, in groups of 25 people), two guards are in charge of controlling the entrance, reviewing the articles that are introduced and solve the doubts. Even with more time standing than the visitors who go to rush hour and wait their turn several hours, they lend themselves with a smile to guide tourists and pilgrims to their destinations, in Spanish, English or with signs if necessary.

At the top of the stairway, two other guards accompany the visitor, who already has in his hands a brochure to know the most important data of the Porch, which is completed with the viewing of a small documentary about the restoration of the monument. There they also have the chance to take as many photos as they want, in the most famous terrace of Compostela, which remained closed for the last five years and has been reopened for the occasion.
Once the doors of the basilica are passed, the last two guards control the groups during the 15 minutes they spend inside and remember, if necessary, the visiting rules (among them, to maintain a respectful attitude and an appropriate tone of voice). In addition, three cameras installed conscientiously to capture the largest possible field of view around the Portico complete the security device. All this, without counting the controls of the conservators, who measure the environmental parameters every hour.

Reduced mobility
It should be remembered that there is an alternative route for people with reduced mobility. They have to contact the staff, who will give them the pertinent instructions. In some cases they must enter through the door of Praterías, and in others through the store of the Cathedral. From there they will join the rest in the Portico.
Camino(s) past & future
First: 1977 (by train)... Next One of Many by Foot? ASAP!
Sigh! When I first visited SdeC in 1977 I remember putting my fingers into the Tree of Jesse handprint so vividly! What a special treat! But that day I saw just two or three peregrinos - certainly not two or three thousand.... So perhaps all this is for the best....
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Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
(2003) Francés, (2014) Francés, (2016) Portugués , (2016) Aragonés, (2018) del Norte to Primitivo
What harm can taking a photo do, with or without flash?


Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
C/F: 2013, 2014
C/M: 2016
C/P: 2015, 2017
C/I: 2018
Voluntario: 2014 - 2019
I encourage everyone to see my post in the thread “Today in Santiago.” There you will find the link to the National Geographic Magazine story on the 10-year renovation of the Portico e la Glora. IMHO, those pictures obviate the need for an in-person visit.

Hope this helps.


Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
I'am not perfect, but I'm always myself!!!
It is argued that light stimulates the bacteria living in the moisture condensing from human breath and it's their excretions that cause the damage. At least that's what they argued at Lascaux.
As a film professional I've read many articles on this matter and most of them are onto what you are saying. Not so much possible damage when stone made objects are in question but very risky with paintings.
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances, 2015
Sigh! When I first visited SdeC in 1977 I remember putting my fingers into the Tree of Jesse handprint so vividly! What a special treat!
Normally I would be able to avoid the temptation to place my hand there but you Rev have made it harder for me to resist. I didn't know that the location worn down was on the Tree of Jesse. I have a line of four Jesses on my family tree.


Wandering in big circles
Camino(s) past & future
Francés ('14/'15)
San Olav/CF ('16)
Baztanés/CF ('17)
Ingles ('18)
Vasco/CF/Invierno ('19)
Sad that this is necessary, but not everyone respects old precious things - Sometimes not even pilgrims.
There was a post here not so long ago written by someone who was actually proud to have illegally gone into where the workers were doing the restoration - so that she could cap off her camino by plastering her hand on the tree of Jesse. "My Camino" taken to extremes.
IMHO, those pictures obviate the need for an in-person visit.
The photos are spectacular but I have to say I would very much like to see it with my own eyes.
It is different to stand there, in person.
When you want a photo, I advice that you by a postcard.
So true. The NGS photos are better than anything I could ever take. And trying to capture the Portico would only get in the way of just being there, and quietly absorbing the beauty of what Maestro Mateo created, now newly restored.
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