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Ashes to Spain?

Camino(s) past & future
First one in 1977 by train. Many since then by foot. Next one ASAP.
I remember an old motion picture about the Camino.... The hero travels from the USA to St Jean PdeP France to collect the cremated remains of his son and take them home. But he then changes his mind and decides to carry the ashes to Santiago de Compostela. Off he goes, via the Route de Napoleon. He encounters no Spanish guards or customs officials at the Fuente de Roland, successfully carries his son's ashes over the border into Spain -- and nobody cares. Easy peasy!

Anyone actually done something like that? Carry ashes into Spain for sprinkling somewhere along the Way? If some old Camino amigo handed me a little box on his death bed and said "Please take a bit of my ashes to Spain!", could I? I ask because I may be facing that situation soon.

How much trouble might I get into if I tried? Would the police arrest me for deplaning at Barajas carrying a box of ashes in my pack? Would anybody care?
 

C clearly

Moderator
Staff member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (2012, 2014, 2015, 2016), VDLP (2017), Mozarabe (2018), Vasco/Bayona (2019)
There are certainly laws about transporting human remains. I did not look into them, but a crematorium might know, as this must be a common request. Google is also your friend for general information.

I would look into the matter in more detail if I were planning to carry a whole box or urn full of ashes. However, I carried a tiny amount of ashes in a tiny plastic container. You could use an envelope. If anyone had asked what they were, I would have told the truth and accepted confiscation if it came to that.
 

Jan_D

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Aragones (2011)
Frances (2012)
Norte (2013, 2014)
Hospitalera (2014)
Portugues (2017)
Found this on the Spanish Consulate in NYC website: http://www.exteriores.gob.es/Consul...ork/Transport-of-Mortal-Remains-to-Spain.aspx

In sum, it says you'll need: 1. death certificate, 2. cremation certificate, and 3. statement from funeral home detailing the content of the urn...

... and then be sure to check any restrictions with the airline! (I know that some will insist on certain types of containers - contents must be scannable - and it's very NB that the container is NOT in hold luggage, as the airline won't accept liability for loss of such a "priceless" item).
 

Joyce Dunn Rogers

Cleveland Flats
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances
Camino Portugal 2021
I remember an old motion picture about the Camino.... The hero travels from the USA to St Jean PdeP France to collect the cremated remains of his son and take them home. But he then changes his mind and decides to carry the ashes to Santiago de Compostela. Off he goes, via the Route de Napoleon. He encounters no Spanish guards or customs officials at the Fuente de Roland, successfully carries his son's ashes over the border into Spain -- and nobody cares. Easy peasy!

Anyone actually done something like that? Carry ashes into Spain for sprinkling somewhere along the Way? If some old Camino amigo handed me a little box on his death bed and said "Please take a bit of my ashes to Spain!", could I? I ask because I may be facing that situation soon.

How much trouble might I get into if I tried? Would the police arrest me for deplaning at Barajas carrying a box of ashes in my pack? Would anybody care?
Don't know about Spain, but I took my husband's ashes back to Ireland in my carry-on backpack.
Airlines invariably pulled my bag aside to investigate the opaque quart plastic container of ashes as it probably looked like cocaine or something.
I had all of my late husband's documents with me in case they were required...they weren't.
Ireland didn't give me any grief when I sprinkled them on every mountain peak in the Mourne Mountains of Northern Ireland.
Imagine Spain wouldn't have an issue, either.
Have to say it was a wonderfully emotional and freeing experience.🙏
 

Albertagirl

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (2015); Aragones-Frances (2016); VdlP-Sanabres (2017); Madrid-Frances-Invierno (2019)Levante
This is a fairly simple procedure within Canada. My brother and I carried our father's ashes from Calgary to London, Ontario where the funeral was to be held, in a cardboard box, carried on the plane with us. My brother had the necessary documents. Any elaborations for the funeral can be done by the funeral home which is arranging the funeral. I read the prayers for the interment of ashes myself at the graveside near where he was born and where my mother was buried, there being no priest present, and put the box (now wood, not cardboard) into the ground. Then his grandchildren filled in the small hole, shovelling in the dusty soil with their hands. It was much more satisfying than leaving an open grave, as had been done at all previous gravesides whcih I have attended. There was someone lurking in a truck nearby, whom I assume would finish the process.
 

ranthr

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
C Frances 2005, 2007
Le Puy en Velay -SdC 2009
Via de la Plata 2011
gr 653 from Oloron to Puente la Reina 2012
Gr65 from le Puy to Figeac 2013
Irun to Santander 2013
Porto to SdC 2014
Astorga to SdC 2015
In Norway you have to get a permission to spread the ashes of someone in the nature. I was very surprised to see boxes ( urner in Norwegian) with names on the cross on the mountain above Benidorm on my first crossing of Sierra Gelada from Albir to Benidorm. Later those and a lot of other “memories”,was cleared away .
 

Albertagirl

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (2015); Aragones-Frances (2016); VdlP-Sanabres (2017); Madrid-Frances-Invierno (2019)Levante
@ranthr is correct that many places have regulations about spreading ashes. I have been told that it is illegal in Alberta. But some people do this if and where they wish, provided they do so privately. I once met a man who was driving along a country road on the Alberta side of Banff National Park to spread his wife's ashes. I had just walked for sixteen days on the South Boundary Trail of the Park in daily rain, and come out a side trail to this road when my trail forward was washed out. I needed a way to get home, but he explained that he was not going my way, as he was in the mountains to perform this act, then to turn around the way he came from. For me, meeting him was part of my experience of surviving a very challenging walk.
 

Jan_D

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Aragones (2011)
Frances (2012)
Norte (2013, 2014)
Hospitalera (2014)
Portugues (2017)
In Norway you have to get a permission to spread the ashes of someone in the nature. I was very surprised to see boxes ( urner in Norwegian) with names on the cross on the mountain above Benidorm on my first crossing of Sierra Gelada from Albir to Benidorm. Later those and a lot of other “memories”,was cleared away .
As we all know from our Camino experiences, Spanish provinces/municipalities often have slightly different regulations and procedures - from what I've read, it seems to be generally accepted that discretely scattering ashes "in nature" is fine (although you can face a fine if you're caught throwing them into the sea!)

Some provinces have started to impose hefty fines on ash scattering in popular spots - I can't find the link now, but the Benidorm Cross was specifically mentioned; many British holidaymakers request this so that they can 'look over Benidorm for eternity', but apparently it was getting a bit out of hand, so they've really clamped down. There are similar restrictions on depositing ashes in pilgrim destinations. (Although I think Catholics have been advised to keep ashes in a "sacred place" - i.e. not scatter them?)
 

Michael; Camino-addicted

Take your time to enjoy a beautiful moment
Camino(s) past & future
A few Caminos
Next plan - Camino de Baztan
In Germany there is a duty to bury human remains in a cemetery or similar recognised area (for example a "peacefull forest" or columbarium). There is also the possibility of burial at sea. In any case, however, a "official" burial must take place.

The urn is never handed over to the family so you can´t bury it in your own garden. Scattering the ashes is also not possible and is considered a disturbance of the peace of the dead.

There are certainly funeral parlors that mainly take care of the transfer of the deceased abroad, they should know what is possible.
Perhaps you can ask the Spanish embassy or consulate about the legal situation in Spain.
 

kazrobbo

Tassie Kaz
Camino(s) past & future
CF 2012
CP 2015
St Olavs Norway 2016
88T Japan 2017
PWC/VF 2019
Israel 2020 X
Wales CP 21?
KK?
VdlP?
I walked the CF from SJPdP in 2012. I met a US citizen in O'Cebreiro who was commencing his walk to SdC. He was carrying a portion of his mother's ashes to spread somewhere not yet determined...he was seeking a place which 'felt right'. In the end, that special place didn't eventuate for him & he left Spain still carrying the ashes. I kept in touch with him & he did find a special place on Corsica.
He was very open in telling everyone on the path his mission but did not declare anything at any border control. The ashes were stored in a small but ornate ceramic container (not usual travel paraphernalia) & he passed through all frontiers unchallenged. Probably risky but ultimately it worked out for him.
👣 🌏
 

Anthony18

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
2019
I remember an old motion picture about the Camino.... The hero travels from the USA to St Jean PdeP France to collect the cremated remains of his son and take them home. But he then changes his mind and decides to carry the ashes to Santiago de Compostela. Off he goes, via the Route de Napoleon. He encounters no Spanish guards or customs officials at the Fuente de Roland, successfully carries his son's ashes over the border into Spain -- and nobody cares. Easy peasy!

Anyone actually done something like that? Carry ashes into Spain for sprinkling somewhere along the Way? If some old Camino amigo handed me a little box on his death bed and said "Please take a bit of my ashes to Spain!", could I? I ask because I may be facing that situation soon.

How much trouble might I get into if I tried? Would the police arrest me for deplaning at Barajas carrying a box of ashes in my pack? Would anybody care?
I did it. I spread a portion of my father's ashes at two points along the camino, which I carried in a tiny urn within a ziploc. You are required to bring a copy of the death and cremation certificate. Screen Shot 2020-09-09 at 10.37.43 PM.png
 

trecile

Camino Addict
Camino(s) past & future
Francés (2016 & 2017), Norte (2018), Francés-Salvador-Norte (2019), Portuguese (2019)

henrythedog

Loved and fed by David
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 2017, 2018, 2019, Ingles 2018, (Madrid 2019 partial - retired hurt!) (more planned)
My wife scattered a portion of her grandmothers ashes on the steps of the casino in Monte Carlo. Long story.

A few teaspoons-full in a discrete container with no supporting documentation passed unnoticed into France and I expect would have done likewise into Spain
 

Kathar1na

Member
Camino(s) past & future
To Santiago and beyond (from home; Voie de Tours; Camino Francés; Biskaya; Manche; Via Brabantica)
In Germany there is a duty to bury human remains in a cemetery or similar recognised area
It is well known that Germany has some of the most restrictive laws about the disposal of the ashes of deceased persons but that does not apply to Spain.

From memory and earlier threads, what is not allowed at all in Spain is leaving an urn in a public space that has not been designated for this purpose. Nevertheless, people do this at beauty spots and other places of significance and also around Fisterra. There are also strict laws about burials of ashes at sea concerning distance to the shore and urns used for this purpose but I don't think that this concerns throwing ashes into the sea from the shore as the movie shows and made popular.

There is an earlier thread here that may have useful information about the relevant experience of others on a camino in Spain as well as travelling with ashes on a plane.
 
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Camino(s) past & future
Completed one 550 Miile and six partial caminos
I remember an old motion picture about the Camino.... The hero travels from the USA to St Jean PdeP France to collect the cremated remains of his son and take them home. But he then changes his mind and decides to carry the ashes to Santiago de Compostela. Off he goes, via the Route de Napoleon. He encounters no Spanish guards or customs officials at the Fuente de Roland, successfully carries his son's ashes over the border into Spain -- and nobody cares. Easy peasy!

Anyone actually done something like that? Carry ashes into Spain for sprinkling somewhere along the Way? If some old Camino amigo handed me a little box on his death bed and said "Please take a bit of my ashes to Spain!", could I? I ask because I may be facing that situation soon.

How much trouble might I get into if I tried? Would the police arrest me for deplaning at Barajas carrying a box of ashes in my pack? Would anybody care?
Yes I have done so.i took some of my husband’s ashes ( well disguised) in my pack.
I think airlines frown upon it.
 

Michael; Camino-addicted

Take your time to enjoy a beautiful moment
Camino(s) past & future
A few Caminos
Next plan - Camino de Baztan
I found this on the website of the Spanish Consulate in Hamburg

In Spain there is no obligation to bury urns in a cemetery.

In Spain, crematoria are authorised to hand over urns or ashes to family members. The family members are free to decide where to leave the urn of their loved ones. They can keep them at home, bury them in a cemetery in a niche, on a wall or in another place dedicated to piety, or scatter the ashes in public places. A burial at sea requires a permit.

The transfer of urns to Spain and their transport within the country are not subject to any specific sanitary requirements. Exceptions are made in cases where the cause of death could pose a threat to hygiene or public health.

Apart from the fact that the urn must be marked on the outside with the name of the deceased whose ashes it contains (Art. 53 del Decreto 2263/1974, de 20 de julio, por el que se aprueba el Reglamento de Policía Sanitaria Mortuoria), no special customs formalities are required when the urn is imported into Spain. However, it is expressly stated that an urn can be treated like any other luggage or hand luggage handed in and that security staff and customs officials, e.g. at ports or airports, are authorised to inspect the urn on exit or entry. It is recommended that you obtain information from the travel company about the respective transport formalities for urns.

The transport and transfer of the urn does not require any authorisation from the Spanish consulates.



As you wrote, the plan is to fly directly to Spain, so this seems to be the complete answer. For example, if you are flying via France, you may need to ask about the regulations there as well.

In the internet a saw a website from a German company. They write about something like a "urn-passport".
This is perhaps something to avoid having to comply with the strict German rules when transferring abroad. Maybe you have such an "urn passport" in your country too?
 

J F Gregory

Portugal Central - October 2019
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (March-April,2016) finished, (October 2019) Portuguese Central Route.
I carried my brothers ashes from the U S to Spain to scatter them along the Camino in my backpack I never thought to declare them.
 

Jomas

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
VF many times. Monaco-Lindau '15. Assisi-Pietralcina '17. CF '18. VF small part 09/20 next
(Although I think Catholics have been advised to keep ashes in a "sacred place" - i.e. not scatter them?)
that's right .... the Catholic Church reiterates its yes to cremation, but burial (the ashes of the deceased are kept in a sacred place, that is, in a cemetery or in a church or in an area specially dedicated to this purpose by the competent ecclesiastical authority) is the preferable practice and the conservation of the urn in the house or the dispersion of the ashes in the earth, water or air is not allowed.

.. then, there is a good degree of tolerance if the urn is kept at home.
 

Rebekah Scott

Camino Busybody
Camino(s) past & future
Many, various, and continuing.
I oversee the Pilgrim Memorial Grove in Valdeviejas, a plot of sacred ground (blessed by the bishop of Astorga) where pilgrims who die along the Way to Santiago are remembered. The ashes of three pilgrims are scattered there -- pilgrims from Australia, Canada, and Spain. No one's ever questioned this. The local worthies who attended the rites were rather chuffed to have them, I think. Likewise, we have interred ashes of an Englishman just outside Moratinos, and have ashes from an American and a Canadian among the roots of the olive tree in the patio at Peaceable Kingdom. So far, no citations, jail time, or squawks.
It's a Work of Mercy, after all.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Vol Pilgm office 15
CF 16+17
Vol Pilgm House 18
Kerry&Ingles 19
Portuguese X2020 (2021?)
I have taken some of my brother's ashes to Europe four times since he died in 2016. I never take very much 3-4oz, in a small plastic bag in the bag with my soap, toothpaste and such. It has never been questioned. I've left his ashes on Croagh Patrick in Ireland, at the Cruz de Ferro and at the Hill of Crosses in Lithuania. He always wanted to explore our family history in Ireland, but was never able to travel there.
 
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Shaun-Castaneda-Rio

Shaun@Feebird-Castaneda
Camino(s) past & future
Francais 2014
Over the Years I have had many camino items left at the house from photographs, to walking poles, stones, or other trinkets but last Summer for the first time two English Sisters stopped at the house for a rest, sitting quietly in the garden for an hour or so. When it came time for them to continue on the way to Arzua they asked me if the my leave a small sprinkling of their fathers ashes in the garden. I felt very privaleged to have been asked and naturally said yes. They chose the spot in a quiet area which is full of natural flowers, rose and two grape vines, We exchanged contact details but have had no further contact. If either of you read or see this post I hope the camino gave you what you wer searching for.
 

Attachments

AlwynWellington

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
please see signature
Anyone actually done something like that? Carry ashes into Spain for sprinkling somewhere along the Way?
Yes. Twice.

On each occasion I carried about a spoonful in a smallish plastic pill bottle (clear amber with a white cap).

Here is some advice I was given by a member before setting off:
"I took a small plastic film container of my parents' ashes and scattered them on the meseta in 2014, so I think it's a fine idea.

However, I don't know why you would put your container of ashes out for screening at airport security. I wouldn't recommend that you draw attention to the fact that you are carrying human remains, as there may be other complicated rules about transporting human remains that you'd rather not find out about. The instructions at airport security are to put out liquids, gels, and of course you can't take sharp items. However, there is no requirement to put out dry materials (e.g. food, tobacco, talcum powder, ashes) for inspection. If anyone questions you, of course you are prepared to be truthful, but don't ask for complications!"

And that is what I did.

The first occasion saw me retired hurt to London, having attained Estella / Lizzara. As part of my rehabilitation, I walked from Southwark Cathedral to another pilgrimage destination. There I enquired of the duty chaplain what I might do with these ashes. We had a chat and he said "follow me". We went to a large substantially enclosed garden and I sprinkled the token ashes over pink roses: he said a prayer for my wife and I said a prayer for his. The photos of the area were a great hit with my wife's friends.

The second occasion was 18 months later. I had returned to Estella, attained Compostela late October and bused to Fisterra, arriving later afternoon. At the pharos I saw dragons at sun down (others thought they might be planes reflecting light, but I know what the old maps tell us). In the morning I went over to the sea coast, found a small cove open to the sea and there sprinkled the token ashes, followed by saying the morning office and emailing her friends with a photo of the setting. The really big climax was the next day, 1 November, to be in pole position (front row of the plebs seating) in the Cathedral for the celebration with a large choir and uncle Tom Cobley and all. And that night I was with my London family

And, no, no check in caused any issues: I was not asked to show and/or explain anything in my checked-in pack which also contained trekking poles and tent pegs. From my front door to Spain I went through four airport check-ins each journey.

And, from my Sovereign I echo Kia kaha, kia māia, kia manawanui tatou katoa (May you be strong, courageous and patient) and I add, get going when you can.
 

Rebekah Scott

Camino Busybody
Camino(s) past & future
Many, various, and continuing.
Over the Years I have had many camino items left at the house from photographs, to walking poles, stones, or other trinkets but last Summer for the first time two English Sisters stopped at the house for a rest, sitting quietly in the garden for an hour or so. When it came time for them to continue on the way to Arzua they asked me if the my leave a small sprinkling of their fathers ashes in the garden. I felt very privaleged to have been asked and naturally said yes. They chose the spot in a quiet area which is full of natural flowers, rose and two grape vines, We exchanged contact details but have had no further contact. If either of you read or see this post I hope the camino gave you what you wer searching for.
Gee, Shaun, I was in Castaneda last week. Wish I'd known you were there!
 

linkster

Nunca dejes de creer!
Camino(s) past & future
CF (17) Sarria - Portomarín
CF (17) SJPdP - SdC
CF (18) SJPdP - Fisterra
CP (19) Porto - Muxia
I have walked with several people from the US that carried ashes (not a full urn). The ashes were placed on the Camino, and in a cemetery in SdC. The placement of the ashes in the cemetery would have required approval, but they were placed there unofficially in the presence of a Catholic priest.🙏
 

Zordmot

First timer Spring 2019
Camino(s) past & future
April-May 2019
To be more precise, I didn't ask Ireland for permission to set my husband's ashes loose on the winds.
Nobody inquired; I didn't say.😉
Yep, as a minister and hospice chaplain I think your last loving act was perfect. Who could possibly object? I say carry the ashes to Spain and follow Martin Sheen’s portrayal of a father who was giving his son what he desired: a walk with him along the Camino.
 

towanda1961

Laura
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances and Invierno (2015)
I remember an old motion picture about the Camino.... The hero travels from the USA to St Jean PdeP France to collect the cremated remains of his son and take them home. But he then changes his mind and decides to carry the ashes to Santiago de Compostela. Off he goes, via the Route de Napoleon. He encounters no Spanish guards or customs officials at the Fuente de Roland, successfully carries his son's ashes over the border into Spain -- and nobody cares. Easy peasy!

Anyone actually done something like that? Carry ashes into Spain for sprinkling somewhere along the Way? If some old Camino amigo handed me a little box on his death bed and said "Please take a bit of my ashes to Spain!", could I? I ask because I may be facing that situation soon.

How much trouble might I get into if I tried? Would the police arrest me for deplaning at Barajas carrying a box of ashes in my pack? Would anybody care?
I took some ashes from the US in 2015. I only took a small amount disguised in an empty “Beano” bottle (the particular friend who’s ashes I carried would have found that detail hysterical.) It was meaningful for me to share my Camino with her. Each time I sprinkled some ashes I took a photo and later shared those photos with her sister. Several years later that sister walked the Camino and felt the presence of her deceased sister as she walked knowing her ashes were scattered along the Way.
 

Bob from L.A. !

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Francis 2012, 2014, 2016. Camino Norte 2018. Many more to come in my future God willing !
Anyone actually done something like that?
I have done this "many" times throughout the world. I carry small canisters of ashes (Human remains) to different countries, locations and summits then scatter them amongst the locations.
Going through customs in all of these places I have never been stopped and/or question about the canisters nor their contents. We always take photos of us spreading the remains and forward them onto the families who provided the ashes to us. Within the photo package we provide a letter with the exact coordinates where the remains were scattered as well. Many of the families have expressed great satisfaction, knowing their loved one's are in the resting places they (departed) had wanted to be placed. This also provides closure for many as well.

U.S.A. - Top of Mt. Baldy (California) X 2
U.S.A. - Top of Mt. Whitney (California) X 7
U.S.A. - Top of Mt. Rainier
Africa - Top of Mt. Kilimanjaro
Argentina - Top of Mt. Aconcogua
Turkey - Top of Mt. Ararat
Armenia - Top of Mt. Aragats
Chile - Ojo del Salado Volcano
Spain - Along the Camino Frances
Spain - Along the Camino Norte
Russia - Top of Mt. Elbrus
Ecuador - Top of Cotopaxi volcano
Ecuador - Top of Antisana volcano
Ecuador - Top of Chimborazo volcano
Mexico - Top of Pico de Orizaba volcano
California coastline - "Numerous" times within the Pacific Ocean
 
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Camino(s) past & future
Camino Portugues May 2019
I also took a small container of the mixed ashes of my parents on my Camino Portugues in 2019. Both loved to travel. My mother knew of and encouraged my Camino before she died in Jan 2019. I found leaving their ashes in various special places along the Camino very cathartic and healing. I didn't think to ask for any permission and had no problems. My husband died this past March and one of my last promises to him was to take some of his ashes to Ireland where his family is from and where we were handfasted. It will be a small discrete container.
On a separate note, my sister works for Disneyland in California. Though the officials there forbid it, she says people secretly scatter loved ones ashes at the "Happiest Place" all the time.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (May 2019)
In 2019, I took about <3 oz of my father-in-law's ashes in a small spice bottle nestled in a pocket on the shoulder strap of my pack. I carried my pack onto the plane (Iberian Airlines) through Boston Logan Airport. I carried the documents identified by Jan_D in my pack:
In sum, it says you'll need: 1. death certificate, 2. cremation certificate, and 3. statement from funeral home detailing the content of the urn...
The security check at the airport noticed the small bottle and pulled me aside for a brief inquiry. I explained what the bottle contained and indicated I had the documents mentioned above, including a letter from the funeral home documenting my intent. The officer offered his condolences and wished me a good trip. I found a special spot where I placed the ashes and felt at peace.
 

RENSHAW

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
2003 CF Roncesvalles to Santiago
2/4 weeks every year on CF reaching Burgos or Leon. Hospitalero San Anton June 2016.
To the dogs of Foncebadone
with all this , take a little vile with a smidgen of the remains. My father is at the ferris de cruz.
If there are problems , I will sort them out!
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Norte and Frances Sept 6 - Oct 11, 2016
Found this on the Spanish Consulate in NYC website: http://www.exteriores.gob.es/Consul...ork/Transport-of-Mortal-Remains-to-Spain.aspx

In sum, it says you'll need: 1. death certificate, 2. cremation certificate, and 3. statement from funeral home detailing the content of the urn...

... and then be sure to check any restrictions with the airline! (I know that some will insist on certain types of containers - contents must be scannable - and it's very NB that the container is NOT in hold luggage, as the airline won't accept liability for loss of such a "priceless" item).
Oh my. That looks terribly complicated. I think a few ashes in an envelope is the way to go.
 

Mycroft

Active Member
Tomorrow I am doing a workshop on the death/burial/cremation statutes in the state where I live in the US. In New Mexico, one may leave ashes anywhere that is not a health hazard, if anyone happens to be passing through and needs a place to rest.

I have brought some ashes from both my Scottie dogs (who taught me what God and love are all about) to my secret place in Scotland so when I am dead, some of my ashes will be scattered with them. No one questioned my little packets of dust.

But a few years ago, upon returning to the US from Europe, I once again was pulled aside. When it was my turn to be questioned, the TSA agent asked me if I was carrying sand. "Sand? No!" and I was about to ask why would anyone carry sand, when the woman next in line blurted out "That's me! I came back from Mexico and a wedding on the beach and brought back some sand." Unfortunately, that distracted the agent to this other woman, and instead of finishing with me, attended to the beach woman. When she had decided Mexican sand was not dangerous, the agent finally returned to me. Later, when I was home and ready to do laundry, I took out of my pack several containers of Czech beads. Suddenly it hit me that perhaps on the TSA screen, my beads appeared as sand. Oops.
 

henrythedog

Loved and fed by David
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 2017, 2018, 2019, Ingles 2018, (Madrid 2019 partial - retired hurt!) (more planned)
It’s a wet Sunday afternoon, so I thought I might expand on my earlier post. My wife’s grandmother Doris passed away at the age of 100 about a decade ago. In her 20s and 30s she was a seasoned international tourist - very unusual for any but the very rich in the 1930’s and 50s. Doris travelled and dined on the cheap.

On one trip she found herself in Monte Carlo and settled down to eat her sandwiches on the steps of the casino. She was removed from there in short order and still talked about it 70 years later.

On her death, ashes were allocated to the three grandchildren. Two were boring and did nothing special, but my wife immediately packed a bag, including a portion of Doris, and set off for Monte where, whilst the door staff were distracted by an accomplice (cough!) the ashes were scattered.

Moral of the story: never p*** off a woman from Wigan. It may take them 80 years, but they’ll win in the end. Even if they’re dead.
 

Bob from L.A. !

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Francis 2012, 2014, 2016. Camino Norte 2018. Many more to come in my future God willing !
This is a GREAT story. Thank you for posting it
 

Rebekah Scott

Camino Busybody
Camino(s) past & future
Many, various, and continuing.
It’s a wet Sunday afternoon, so I thought I might expand on my earlier post. My wife’s grandmother Doris passed away at the age of 100 about a decade ago. In her 20s and 30s she was a seasoned international tourist - very unusual for any but the very rich in the 1930’s and 50s. Doris travelled and dined on the cheap.

On one trip she found herself in Monte Carlo and settled down to eat her sandwiches on the steps of the casino. She was removed from there in short order and still talked about it 70 years later.

On her death, ashes were allocated to the three grandchildren. Two were boring and did nothing special, but my wife immediately packed a bag, including a portion of Doris, and set off for Monte where, whilst the door staff were distracted by an accomplice (cough!) the ashes were scattered.

Moral of the story: never p*** off a woman from Wigan. It may take them 80 years, but they’ll win in the end. Even if they’re dead.
Henry, I join online each night for Compline prayers with the Church of St. Mary the Virgin in Leigh, Wigan, a place I have never been in real life! The vicar there is a loveably witty man, like your Doris... I shall have visit there someday. I like those people!
 

mmmmartin

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Santander-SdC bici '14
Plata bici '17
1/2 Plata bici '18
Frances a pie '18
(Porto a pie '19)
It’s a wet Sunday afternoon, so I thought I might expand on my earlier post. My wife’s grandmother Doris passed away at the age of 100 about a decade ago. In her 20s and 30s she was a seasoned international tourist - very unusual for any but the very rich in the 1930’s and 50s. Doris travelled and dined on the cheap.

On one trip she found herself in Monte Carlo and settled down to eat her sandwiches on the steps of the casino. She was removed from there in short order and still talked about it 70 years later.

On her death, ashes were allocated to the three grandchildren. Two were boring and did nothing special, but my wife immediately packed a bag, including a portion of Doris, and set off for Monte where, whilst the door staff were distracted by an accomplice (cough!) the ashes were scattered.

Moral of the story: never p*** off a woman from Wigan. It may take them 80 years, but they’ll win in the end. Even if they’re dead.
You win the internet with this post. Brilliant.
 

Geodoc

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF 2018 (across Pyrenees, then Sarria to SdC), CF 2019 (SJPdP to Finisterra & Muxia), CI 2019
My best friend of over 20 years died Monday from complications caused by pancreatic cancer. He's being cremated and his ashes will be spread at sea in the Puget Sound. At my request, his partner will save a small amount of his ashes so I can carry them on the Camino. The only requirement is that they be spread in saltwater (i.e., the ocean, not water I add salt to).

Are there any charter companies in Fisterra or Muxia (preferably sail) that can take us out a sufficient distance to do so legally?

I'm thinking that putting the ashes in an empty airline bottle of my friend's favorite adult beverage would be the most appropriate manner of carrying them.
 

Rclarke

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Leaving April 6 from SJPP
I remember an old motion picture about the Camino.... The hero travels from the USA to St Jean PdeP France to collect the cremated remains of his son and take them home. But he then changes his mind and decides to carry the ashes to Santiago de Compostela. Off he goes, via the Route de Napoleon. He encounters no Spanish guards or customs officials at the Fuente de Roland, successfully carries his son's ashes over the border into Spain -- and nobody cares. Easy peasy!

Anyone actually done something like that? Carry ashes into Spain for sprinkling somewhere along the Way? If some old Camino amigo handed me a little box on his death bed and said "Please take a bit of my ashes to Spain!", could I? I ask because I may be facing that situation soon.

How much trouble might I get into if I tried? Would the police arrest me for deplaning at Barajas carrying a box of ashes in my pack? Would anybody care?
When we arrived at the Cruz de ferro in April 2018 there was a lady from the US who spreadING some of her sins ashes there. It was a very somber, emotional time. I hadn’t met her before nor have I since but do think of her occasionally.
 

Rclarke

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Leaving April 6 from SJPP

When we arrived at the Cruz de ferro in April 2018 there was a lady from the US who spreadING some of her sins ashes there. It was a very somber, emotional time. I hadn’t met her before nor have I since but do think of her occasionally.
sorry her son’s ashes
 

henrythedog

Loved and fed by David
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 2017, 2018, 2019, Ingles 2018, (Madrid 2019 partial - retired hurt!) (more planned)
Henry, I join online each night for Compline prayers with the Church of St. Mary the Virgin in Leigh, Wigan, a place I have never been in real life! The vicar there is a loveably witty man, like your Doris... I shall have visit there someday. I like those people!

Wigan and Leigh - fine people, as you say. My wife’s family are from thereabouts as you’ll have gathered. So near that you could throw a rock from one to the other, and the locals often do.

A fine example of ‘keep your friends close, and your enemies closer.’
 

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