"Pope Authorizes Official Pilgrimages to Medjugorje"
May 13, 2019
Garabandal, Santiago de Compostela, Fatima, Lourdes & Medjugorje18 days
Your trip includes
- Round-trip airfare
- ~ 2 nights: Hotel Santemar in Santander (or Garabandal), Spain
- ~ 2 nights: San Francisco Hotel Monumento, Santiago De Compostela, Spain
- ~ 1 night: Marques de Pombal or Mundial, Lisbon, Portugal
- ~ 2 nights: Santa Maria Jardim, Fatima, Portugal
- ~ 1 night: Hotel Monterrey, Salamanca, Spain
- ~ 1 night: Abba Burgos Hotel, Burgos, Spain
- ~ 4 nights: Modern Pansion/Hotel, Medjugorje
- Lunches, Tips to your guide & driver.
Day 1, USA - Spain
Depart USA for your overnight flight to Spain. Dinner and breakfast will be served on board.
Day 2, Arrive Spain - Garabandal (or Santander)
Upon arrival in Spain, collect your luggage in the baggage claim area, and continue to the Arrival's Hall, where you will be greeted by a tour escort and/or driver. You will make your way to the bus and transfer to your hotel. As you motor through the scenic countryside of Cantabria, Spain, enjoy the lush green mountains before arriving to the hamlet of Garabandal. Check into your hotel for dinner and an overnight.
Day 3, Garabandal
After breakfast, start your day visiting Garabandal. Little has changed in this rural town since June 18, 1961 when four children had an apparition first of an Angel, sent to prepare the children for a visit from the Virgin. From July 2, 1961 sporadically until Nov 13, 1965, the Blessed Virgin visited them, speaking, guiding and confiding secrets of future events. The children reported a promised future miracle at the grove of pine trees on a bluff overlooking the village of Garabandal. It will be on the feast-day of a little known martyr of the Eucharist and coincide with an event in the Church. In the afternoon, travel to Santo Toribio de Liebana Monastery. The monastery was founded prior to the 6th Century. According to tradition, the Monastery venerates the largest piece of the Lignum Crucis discovered in Jerusalem by Saint Helena of Constantinople and brought from the Church of the Medjugorje by Saint Turibius of Astorga. The left arm of the True Cross is kept on a gilded silver reliquary. The monastery was initially dedicated to St. Martin of Tours but its name was changed in the 12th Century. On April 16, 1961, the Franciscan friars, custodians of the Holy Places, were entrusted with the relic's safekeeping and with the promotion of the devotion to the Holy Cross. You will return to Garabandal for dinner and an overnight.
Day 4, Garabandal (or Santander) - Santiago De Compostela
After breakfast, depart for Covadonga and visit the Covadonga Sanctuary. This Shrine gained popularity following the Battle of Covadonga in 722, at which the Moorish invasion of Spain was first resisted. A statue of the Virgin Mary, secretly hidden in one of the caves, was believed to have faithfully supported the Christian victory. Covadonga is the place where the re-conquest began under King Pelayo, whose remains are buried in the cave alongside Our Lady of Covadonga. This is the gateway to the Picos de Europa National Park. The Basilica, alongside the cave where pilgrims venerate the statue of Our Lady of Covadonga, is a place of worship and pilgrimage for the people of Asturias. The Basilica is in neo-Romanesque style, with two high towers flanking the main entrance. Inside there are works of great value, such as a canvass by Madrazo. The statue of King Pelayo is in the square by the Basilica. The statue of Our Lady of Covadonga, the tomb of King Pelayo and that of King Alfonso I, are in the Holy Cave, with access via a large staircase. A spring flows out of the cave and below this there is a fountain with seven spouts. On the altar, a gold panel represents the battle of Covadonga. Continue on to the great city of Santiago de Compostela for dinner and a restful overnight.
Day 5, Santiago De Compostela
This morning, you will walk a few miles of El Camino, and immerse yourselves in the fragrant eucalyptus groves and experience the breathtaking scenery. Later this morning, attend the International Pilgrim Mass at the Cathedral of St. James. After Mass, there will be free time for lunch. In the afternoon, visit the Cathedral of Santiago, formed by Galician granite, this 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, 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 are kept. After that, you will enjoy a sightseeing tour of the city. Some stops on this tour include the Obradoiro Square, Fonseca Palace, Gemirez Palace, Franco Street, and much more. Return to hotel for dinner and an overnight.
Day 6, Santiago de Compostela - Lisbon
After breakfast, you will depart for Lisbon. In the late afternoon, you will begin a panoramic sightseeing tour of the coastal city of Lisbon. Stop at the St. Jerome's Monastery, built to give thanks to the Virgin Mary for guiding Vasco da Gama on his voyage that linked Europe and Asia. Continue to drive by the Belem Quarter that contains the iconic entry way to the Lisbon harbor, the Belem Tower. This important structure of history has many beautiful sculptures, such as depictions of, St. Vincent and Our Lady of Safe Homecoming. Continue and pass by the "25th of April Bridge", inspired by the Golden Gate Bridge of San Francisco, California. The Ponte 25 de Abril is the oldest bridge that connects the Tagus River of Lisbon. Following, you will drive by the Discoveries Monument. This memorial commemorates the Great Explorers who, as a result of their explorations, brought Portugal to a standing of wealth and power during the Age of Discovery. This ship prow-shaped structure stands at the point where the Great Explorers began their expeditions. Enjoy a view of the Basilica of the Star, the Rossio Square, Commerce Square, and the Marquee of Pombal Square. Our last stop will be St. Anthony's Church to celebrate Mass. Although this patron Saint of Lost Things is known as St. Anthony of Padua (Italy), he was originally born in Lisbon, Portugal. This Church is built upon the site of St. Anthony's birth, and is also where Saint John Paul II visited in 1982. The former Pope stopped at this Church, on his way to Fatima, to pray to Our Lady in thanksgiving. Saint John Paul II recognizes Our Lady as saving him from being killed when he was shot one year prior, in 1981. After Mass, check-in at the hotel and enjoy a welcoming dinner followed by a restful overnight.
Day 7, Lisbon - Santarem - Fatima
Today, we will travel north to the old city of Santarem. In Santarem, visit and attend Mass at the Church of St. Stephen, which holds (13th century) Eucharistic Miracle: The Miracle occurred when a woman yearned to change the ways of her unfaithful husband and consulted a sorceress. The sorceress agreed that she would cure the husband's infidelity in exchange for a consecrated Host. The woman committed the sacrilege, but when she exited the church, the Host began to bleed. It bled so much that her fellow parishioners thought she had cut her hand. The woman ran home and hid the bleeding Host in a trunk. When her husband arrived home, the wife told him what she had done, and later that night there was a light emanating from the trunk. She and her husband began to kneel before the trunk. The following morning, the husband and wife brought the Host to the Parish Priest. It was then moved to the Church of St. Stephen where another miracle occurred; the miraculous Host was originally put in a wax container, however, when the Priest opened the tabernacle to view the Host, the container was found broken, and the Host was found enclosed in a crystal pyx. Return to Fatima with a visit to the Hamlet of Aljustrel, the home of the three shepherd children. Visit the Parish Church and Fatima Parish Cemetery before returning to the hotel for dinner and an overnight.
Day 8, Fatima
Today will surely be a memorable experience, as you 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 with the exhibition: Fatima: Light and Peace. Continue with a visit to the Holy Trinity Basilica. After free time for 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 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 with private devotions, and a candlelight procession, requested by Our Lady (1917). Enjoy dinner and a comfortable night's rest in Fatima.
Day 9, Fatima - Salamanca
Depart Fatima and head to Salamanca, following a full breakfast at the hotel. Salamanca is a city in the Castilla y Leon region, and is known for its large University, the oldest in Spain that is still active, along with its prominent culture. Our walking tour will bring us by the most noteworthy sites such as; the grand Plaza Mayor, an iconic square filled with food, shopping and city events; La Clerecia, a church and college of the Jesuit Order that was constructed in the seventeenth century; La Casa de las Conchas, currently a public library but also, a monument noted and decorated by shells, which symbolizes the ever-famous pilgrimage to Santiago (El Camino); the University of Salamanca, the oldest University in Spain and the third oldest in Europe; the Roman Bridge, extends along the River Tormes, is a national monument and among one of Salamanca's sturdiest bridges; La Iglesia de San Marcos, constructed in the Romanesque style and contains breathtaking paintings that portray many scenes of Our Lady's life; La Iglesia de San Martin, a church devoted to St. Martin de Porres, who is the patron saint of mixed-race people and all those seeking interracial harmony. Visit the inside of the two joint Salamanca Cathedrals (old and new), one of which is a Romanesque style and the other a Gothic style. Following this eventful day, you will return to your hotel for a delicious meal with your group and an overnight at your hotel in Salamanca.
Day 10, Salamanca - Alba De Tormes - Avila - Burgos
This morning, after breakfast, you will board the bus and enjoy a short transfer to the village of Alba de Tormes. This town is home to the Carmelite Monastery that Saint Teresa founded in 1571. Upon arrival in Alba de Tormes, your group will celebrate Mass at this Monastery where the saint died and was buried. Following Mass, you will have the opportunity to visit the museum dedicated to St. Teresa of Avila, which also holds her incorrupt heart and left arm. Your group will enjoy free time for lunch on your own, before continuing to the medieval city of Avila. Upon arrival in Avila, you will immediately notice the perfectly preserved eleventh-century walls that surround the old town. The conservation of architecture in this city, to which St. Teresa was born, deems its shrines, convents and churches necessary to visit on any Catholic pilgrimage. The Cathedral de Avila encompasses the Romanesque, Gothic and Renaissance styles of its time, within its artwork and architecture. La Basilica de San Vicente in Avila, stands on the site of the martyrdom of St. Vincent. Visit the Incarnation Convent, where St. Teresa became a nun. Saint Therese convinced Saint John of the Cross to reform the male Carmelite order, the reform she started when she met Saint John in Medina del Campo. After walking in the footsteps of St. Teresa, continue your journey to Burgos. Upon arrival in the historic capital of Old Castile, enjoy dinner. Following dinner, you will have the opportunity to explore the city of Burgos, and admire its magnificent limestone, gothic-style Cathedral. Late this evening, you will return to your hotel for a restful overnight.
Day 11, Burgos - Loyola - Lourdes
Following breakfast, transfer from Burgos to Loyola to visit the birthplace of St. Ignatius, founder of the Jesuit Order. St. Ignatius dedicated himself to becoming a soldier of the Christian faith, and as a result of many tribulations, he wrote the ever-famous Spiritual Exercises. In Loyola, you will see the 17th century Basilica that is dedicated to this remarkable Saint. The Basilica is part of a series of buildings that surrounds the "Holy House," the birthplace of St. Ignatius. When you visit these Holy places, you will also have the opportunity to pray at the most venerated room, where St. Ignatius prayed and began his conversion. After meditating on the life of this founder of the Jesuit Order, you will enjoy free time for lunch and board the bus for the next destination. We will continue to Lourdes with a spectacular view of the Pyrenees Mountains. Upon arrival in Lourdes, you will check-in to your hotel and enjoy a splendid dinner and peaceful overnight.
Day 12, Lourdes
Over the next two days, you will wake up in a small town that is nestled within the Pyrenees Mountains. During your time in Lourdes, you will pray and meditate in yet another site of Our Lady's apparitions. Our Lady first appeared to Bernadette in 1858, and announced herself as "The Immaculate Conception", near the Grotto of Massabielle. During the first two apparitions, little Bernadette prayed the Rosary with Our Lady and left without any exchange of words. During the following apparitions, Our Lady emphasized God's love for us, penance and the necessity of performing acts of penance for sinners. Throughout your time in Lourdes, you will have the opportunity to attend Mass at the Grotto, where Our Lady appeared to Bernadette; watch a video presentation that explains, in detail, the story of Lourdes; drink water from the miraculous spring that has healed many; and submerge yourself in the healing baths. Additionally, you will have the opportunity to experience Christ's unconditional love, as you meditate upon the "life size" Stations of the Cross that overlook the Grotto of Massabielle. Also, while in Lourdes, you will walk in and meditate upon the footsteps of St. Bernadette. Your group will have the opportunity to see Boly Mill, the birthplace of St. Bernadette, and the "Cachot," an abandoned prison where Bernadette's impoverished family lived. Each evening following dinner, you will have an opportunity to attend the candlelight procession and the Rosary before a restful overnight.
Day 13, Lourdes - Medjugorje
This morning, you will transfer to Pau or Toulouse airport to board your flight(s) to Medjugorje. Upon arrival, you will be greeted by your tour guide and/or driver, who will take you on the 2.5 hour drive to the village of Medjugorje. Dinner and an overnight.
Days 14 - 17, Medjugorje
The most beautiful features of Medjugorje are its simplicity and peace. While in Medjugorje, you may experience your faith grow, and share in the faith journey of pilgrims from all over the world. A local guide will accompany your group throughout your stay in the village.
Some activities that will accompany you in your spiritual journey:
Attend Daily Mass: Each morning at 10:00 AM, your group will assemble at St. James Church for Mass (English-Speaking). At the end of each Mass, regardless of language, there is a blessing of the religious articles that you have with you.
On Feast Days, and Sundays: English Mass is at 12 PM.
Climb Apparition Hill: This mountainous hill is where the visionaries first encountered Our Lady. At the base of this hill is a Blue Cross, where it is said Our Lady appeared to the children while they hid from the communist police in the early days of the alleged apparitions. While climbing, your group is invited to recite the Rosary, pausing five times for each decade of the Rosary. At the top of the hill, you will witness the exact location of the first alleged apparition of Our Lady to the visionaries, and enjoy private time for prayer.
Climb Mt. Krizevac (Cross Mountain): In 1933, the villagers built a 30' high cross atop a mountain to commemorate Jesus' passion and death on the cross. Your group will have the opportunity to climb this mountain, and venerate that very cross. While climbing, your group is invited to pray the Stations of the Cross (to meditate on Jesus' suffering Road to Calvary), pausing fifteen times for each Station.
Apparitions: Each evening at 5:00 PM (or 6:00 PM depending on Daylight Savings Time), your group can join the villagers and fellow pilgrims of Medjugorje at either St James Church or Apparition Hill to commemorate the time Our Lady appears to the Visionaries. There you can pray the Rosary, as you all await that time (5:40 PM or 6:40 PM during Daylight Savings Time).
*Afterward, Croatian Mass is held at St. James Church and is free to all to attend. It is broadcasted by the radio, simultaneously in order to translate the services from Croatian into many languages. Following the Croatian Mass, there is a Blessing of the Sick.
**For details about the Visionaries, please visit: www.206tours.com/visionaries
Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament: Our Lady has always called us to be close to her Son. For this, you will have the opportunity to adore the Blessed Sacrament at the altar outside of St. James Church. Adoration is held on Tuesdays and Saturdays; Veneration of the Cross is held on Fridays inside the church. Additionally, there is an Adoration Chapel on the grounds of St. James Church, where Adoration is held in the afternoon hours.
Visit to the Community of Cenacolo: You will have the opportunity to visit the community of Cenacolo, founded by the Sisters of Charity, for young men and women who have taken a wrong path and are on the road to recovery. You will be able to listen to their inspirational words about their journeys back to Jesus Christ.
Prayer at the Statue of the Risen Christ: The bronze statue of the Risen Christ is located on the grounds of St. James Church. Many pilgrims sit and pray on the benches surrounding this peaceful statue. This statue miraculously seeps droplets of water at all times of the day, out of Christ's right knee.
* Your time in Medjugorje is intended to provide a personal retreat. As such, your time in Medjugorje is not designed to be a “tour” but rather, to provide opportunities for prayer and reflection as you feel called. Upon arrival in the village, you will have an orientation tour. For the remainder of your stay, you will not have a guide however, a representative of 206 Tours will be available should you have any questions or requests. Daily Mass in English and English confessions are available at St. James Church in Medjugorje.
If you would prefer our traditional pilgrimage/tour of Medjugorje, we would recommend you consider our Tour #1 (www.206tours.com/tour1) that provides a tour escort and spiritual leader throughout your stay.
Day 18, Return Home
After an early breakfast and heartfelt farewells, transfer to Dubrovnik, Split or Sarajevo Airport for return flights home.*206 Tours Disclaimer:
Occasionally local religious and national holidays, weather, traffic conditions and other events may necessitate changes in the sequence of events or the missing of certain events/places. Though every effort will be made to follow the itinerary, it should be considered as an indication, rather than a contract of events and places to be visited.
About your trip
About Santiago de Compostela:
The Way of St. James or St. James' Way, often known by its Spanish name, el Camino de Santiago, is the pilgrimage to the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela in Galicia in northwestern Spain, where the remains of the Apostle, Saint James the Great, are buried. The Way of St James has existed for over one thousand years. It was one of the most important Christian pilgrimages during medieval times, as it was considered one of three pilgrimages on which a plenary indulgence could be earned; the others are the Via Francigena to Rome and the pilgrimage to Jerusalem. St. James' remains were carried by boat from Jerusalem to northern Spain where they were buried at the site of what is now the city of Santiago de Compostela.
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.
Saint Teresa and Saint Ingatius both hailed from Spain. Saint Teresa of Ávila, also called Saint Teresa of Jesus, was a prominent Spanish mystic, Carmelite nun, and writer. Saint Ignatius of Loyola was a Spanish knight who became priest and found the Society of Jesus and became its first Superior General.
She came for you and for every one of us! 6 million Pilgrims go to Lourdes each year and 10,000 visit this holy site daily. At the foot of the Pyrenees mountains in Southwestern France, nestled between the spectacular mountain river, Gave de Pau, is Lourdes, one of the most paramount pilgrimage sites in the World. Lourdes is the birthplace of St. Bernadette, to whom Our Lady appeared to in 1858, near the Grotto of Massabielle. Included in our pilgrimage to Lourdes are visits to the Sanctuary and the Basilica of St. Pius X, the world's largest underground church. Drink from the spring that the Virgin directed Bernadette to do, located at the base of the Grotto, which has flowed uninterrupted since 1858. Wash yourself in the baths, that has resulted in hundreds of miraculous cures. Contemplate Christ's Passion as you pray the unique three-dimensional Stations of the Cross. Attend the Blessing of the Sick, and participate in the nightly candlelight processions requested by Our Lady. Daily Mass, and Mass at the Grotto on Sunday will be followed by a video presentation telling the miraculous story of Lourdes. Visit Lourdes and experience a spiritual journey, one that many have claimed healing and conversion from.
On June 25, 1981, in the mountain village of Medjugorje in Herzegovina, Our Lady allegedly appeared to six children. She identified herself as the Blessed Virgin Mary, Queen of Peace, and continues to allegedly appear to several of the visionaries. Her mission is to promote peace with God and mankind, through her Son, Jesus. Mary's own words to the children explained, "I have come to tell the world that God exists." 206 Tours has been arranging pilgrimages to Medjugorje since 1985.