A donation to the forum removes ads for you, and supports Ivar in his work running it


Camino Forum Donation

Did you see the Botafumeiro?

Did you see the Botafumeiro when you went to the Pilgrims Mass in Santiago de Compostela?

  • Total voters
Camino(s) past & future
I saw a recent thread regarding the Botafumeiro in Santiago de Compostela and the times it is being swung. Some experienced Pilgrims shared that while there is a weekly evening occasion that it is seen regularly thanks to local Hoteliers but to see it during the noon Pilgrims Mass is a matter of luck or a matter of someone having paid (donated? Bestowed?) a fee of approximately 350-400 Euros to the Cathedral.

I've walked the Camino Frances twice and have seen the Botafumeiro swung both times and now wonder if I was indeed lucky or if someone had transferred the fee for which I benefitted. I also wonder if it is swung more often than we think so thought it would be interesting to get feedback with a poll about whether you saw the Botafumeiro when you went to the noon Mass.

Anemone del Camino

I don't know how to answer your survey as I have seen the botafumeiro many times, but don't know if ot was for pilgrim mass or not. No idea what a pilgrim's mass is, unless it's when they read where people came from. But even then, couldn't tell you if one came with the other.
Camino(s) past & future
I don't know how to answer your survey as I have seen the botafumeiro many times, but don't know if ot was for pilgrim mass or not. No idea what a pilgrim's mass is, unless it's when they read where people came from. But even then, couldn't tell you if one came with the other.
As I understand it, the daily noon Mass is referred to as the 'Pilgrims Mass'. I suppose it would be tough for Pilgrims who have walked numerous times to answer a simple yes or no but appreciate the feedback.


Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
SJPP-SdC (4-5/2011), Ferrol-SdC (9/2011), Pamplona-SdC (3-4/2012), Camino Finisterre (10/2012), Ourense-SdC (5/2014)
Yes - I've arrived in Santiago several times, so my answer would be 'more often than not'. However I usually arrive at busy times of year and spend at least a couple of days in SdC, so that increases my chances too!


Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
I stayed in Santiago for about a week and did see it a few times. I only know of one time for sure that someone paid.


Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances - 2016 www.angie-carter.com/camino
Saw it on June 23rd. Beautiful.


Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances - April-June, 2016
Portuguese Lisbon-Santiago - October, 2017
We also saw it on the 23rd of this year. Thursday at noon, so I guess someone paid for it. I was pleasantly surprised.
Camino(s) past & future
Sarria to Santiago July 2014 and SJJP to estella 2015. Planning Estella to Bolerado 2016
Yes July 2014. It was really amazing. We were in the cathedral and seated at 11 an hr before mass.
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (2015); Ch. d'Arles: Oloron Ste Marie to Aragones; Frances (2016); V.d.l.P.; Sanabres (2017)
I have seen the Botafumeiro swing two or three times when I was in Santiago, the last of which was at a Sunday noon mass, so I don't know whether that would be considered to be a Pilgrim Mass. On every occasion, I saw it mostly out of the corner of my eye as I was hotfooting it to the nearest exit. Incense makes me choke and I do not consider it to be particularly inspiring, so I avoid it when I can.

Alan Pearce

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Aragones 2008, del Norte 2009, VdlP 2011, Ingles 2014, Camino de Madri 2015, Frances 2017
I spent the month of May this year in Santiago, and the Botafumeiro was swung most days after the midday Pilgrim mass. There are tour groups arriving every day, and lots of them are happy to pay some extra to see the iconic censor.


Be brave. Life is joyous.


Unlikely Peregrina
Camino(s) past & future
June 1, 2016
We saw it the first time on June 18 at 6:30 p.m. Mass. The bishop was there and many priests ... Then again the next day at 10:30 Mass... It may be more often during this year of mercy

DJ King

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances May-June (2016)
I know there will be another in the not too distant future!
I arrived in Santiago in mid-June and was there for a few days. (I was there at the same time as Myr) I went to the pilgrim's mass twice. The botafumiero was swung both times. I get the sense that what Alan Pearce said is accurate. I had the same thought. Tour planners who are bringing groups of pilgrims to Santiago probably tack on a few extra euros to the cost of the tour in order to pay for their people to have the memorable experience. I hope you get to experience it -- it really is special.
Camino(s) past & future
cycled from Pamplona Sep 2015;Frances, walked from St Jean 2017.
I too am amongst the lucky to have seen it swing on two occasions. On the first the priest announce that there had been a "donation", on the second I learned that a group of tourists (on a coach) had pooled their funds - 30 travellers - 10 or 20 Euros was sufficient donation. Apparently this form of "donation" is increasing - not sure if its the tour coaches or the Cathedral Admin who are doing the "encouraging". Either way the pilgrims are the beneficiaries.

BTW - can someone please explain/confirm - are there two different size Botafumeiro used on different occasions? (normal Fridays / Feast Days) The reason I ask is that in the movie The Way the botofumeiro appears to be considerably larger than the one I saw last Sept (2015), whilst the one I saw in June 2013 did appear to be the same size as the movie one. Cheers

OLDER threads on this topic

Book your lodging here




Most read today

Most downloaded Resources

Forum Rules

Forum Rules

Camino Forum Store

Camino Forum Store

Casa Ivar Newsletter

Forum Donation

Forum Donation
For those with no forum account, it is possible to donate here as well. Thank you for your support! Ivar

Follow Casa Ivar on Instagram

When is the best time to walk?

  • January

    Votes: 11 1.3%
  • February

    Votes: 5 0.6%
  • March

    Votes: 35 4.3%
  • April

    Votes: 126 15.4%
  • May

    Votes: 198 24.2%
  • June

    Votes: 58 7.1%
  • July

    Votes: 17 2.1%
  • August

    Votes: 13 1.6%
  • September

    Votes: 240 29.4%
  • October

    Votes: 98 12.0%
  • November

    Votes: 11 1.3%
  • December

    Votes: 5 0.6%