Lonely Planet Writer

Costa Rican Catholics begin pilgrimage to Basilica de Los Ángeles

This weekend thousands of devoted Catholics across Central America will begin their annual pilgrimage to the Basilica de Los Angeles in Cartago, Costa Rica in an event called the romería, to pay respects to the country’s patron saint, the Virgin of Los Angeles, also known locally as La Negrita.

The Basílica de Nuestra Señora de Los Ángeles, Cartado, Costa Rica.
The Basílica de Nuestra Señora de Los Ángeles, Cartado, Costa Rica. Image by wiredtourist.com / CC BY 2.0

The tradition is based on a seventeenth century legend about a young woman who discovered a statue depicting a woman carrying her baby, but every time she tried to move the statue to her home, it would disappear and reappear in the location that she originally found it. Deemed by the town’s priest as a message from the Virgin Mary, the villagers built the a church in honor of the miracle. To facilitate safe passage, the Red Cross will be established in ten locations and there will be twenty-five security posts along the route in case of emergency. Read more: ticotimes.net