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Marian Route, the “camino” of the Virgin’s devotees

The Marian Route is a religious and tourist itinerary that connects five Marian shrines of great importance on both sides of the Pyrenees. Each of these shrines has a unique history and architectural beauty that attracts pilgrims and visitors from all over the world. The route has its origins in the ancient Marian road that linked the Pilar de Zaragoza with Lourdes, crossing Torreciudad, a well-known pilgrimage destination for many years.

This Route offers a unique experience that combines religious faith with the enjoyment of the historical, artistic and natural heritage of the regions it crosses. Pilgrims and travelers are free to begin their journey at any sanctuary and follow a flexible itinerary tailored to their preferences. Although some classic stages are suggested, such as the route from El Pilar to Lourdes via Torreciudad, Meritxell and Montserrat, travelers can make variations and deviations to explore additional places of interest along the way.

The Marian Route is ideally traveled by car, motorcycle or bus, although some travelers choose to do some stages on foot or by bicycle. Along the route, pilgrims have the opportunity to visit Marian shrines, where they can experience spirituality and religious devotion, as well as discover the artistic and architectural richness of these sacred places. In addition, the route passes through regions of breathtaking natural beauty, offering travelers the opportunity to enjoy spectacular scenery and the tranquility of natural surroundings.

The Sanctuary of Nuestra Señora del Pilar, in Zaragoza, is one of the most outstanding destinations on the Marian Route. The current sanctuary, a place of great spiritual and cultural importance, is the result of centuries of history and different constructions, and was erected under the tradition of ‘the coming in mortal flesh’ of the Virgin Mary to Zaragoza. Its baroque basilica houses the jasper column that, according to tradition, the Virgin Mary gave to the apostle Santiago in the year 40 of our era.

The Sanctuary of Torreciudad, located in province of Huesca, is another highlight of the Marian Route. Dedicated to Our Lady of the Angels, this shrine is known for its connection to St. Josemaría Escrivá, founder of Opus Dei, and with families. The present church was built in the 20th century following Escrivá’s wishes, and houses the venerated image of Our Lady of Torreciudad, in a beautiful natural setting.

In Catalonia, the Sanctuary of Montserrat is a majestic place located among mountains. Founded in the 9th century, this Benedictine monastery is known for housing the sculpture of the Virgin of Montserrat, nicknamed “La Moreneta”. In addition to its religious importance, Montserrat is famous for its exceptional natural environment and its outstanding art collection hosted in its spectacular Museum.

In the Principality of Andorra, the Sanctuary of Meritxell is an architectural jewel dedicated to the Virgin of Meritxell, patron saint of the country. The present church, built in the 20th century after a fire destroyed the old hermitage, combines traditional and contemporary elements in its architectural design. The sanctuary houses the ancient Romanesque carving of the Virgin of Meritxell, an object of great devotion among believers.

Finally, in the city of Lourdes, France, is one of the most sacred Marian destinations in the world. The Shrine of Our Lady of Lourdes is known for the Marian apparitions that took place in 1858, when the Virgin Mary is said to have revealed herself to the young Bernadette Soubirous in the grotto of Massabielle. The shrine attracts millions of pilgrims seeking spiritual and physical healing, making it an internationally renowned center of Marian devotion.

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