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Papal Travels, 1978~2004
During the 26 years of his papacy, Pope John Paul II traveled more than a million miles on more than 100 trips to 129 different countries, readily earning the nickname of "globe-trotting pope." Here is a list of John Paul II's trips outside Italy since the beginning of his pontificate in October, 1978:
Dominican Republic and Mexico, Jan. 25-Feb. 1, 1979, with a stopover in the Bahamas.
Poland, June 2-10, 1979. Soviet authorities later credited the pontiff's visits to his homeland as essential to turning popular sentiment against Communist rule in Eastern Europe.
Ireland and the United States, Sept. 29-Oct. 7, 1979. The U.S. leg of the trip began Oct. 1.
Turkey, Nov. 28-30, 1979. Significant because it was a visit to a Muslim country with few Catholics.
Africa, May 2-12, 1980. The pope visited Zaire, Congo, Kenya, Ghana, Upper Volta (now Burkina Faso) and the Ivory Coast.
France, May 30-June 2, 1980.
Brazil, June 30-July 12, 1980.
West Germany, Nov. 15-19, 1980.
The Far East, Feb. 16-27, 1981. The pope visited the Philippines, Guam and Japan with stopovers of several hours in Pakistan and Anchorage, Alaska.
Africa, Feb. 12-19, 1982. The pope visited Nigeria, Benin, Gabon and Equatorial Guinea.
Portugal, May 12-15, 1982.
Great Britain, May 28-June 2, 1982. A trip to the historically anti-Catholic country as it was fighting the Falklands War with Argentina (see below).
Argentina, June 11-12, 1982. Included a stopover of several hours in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, during the climax of the Falklands War.
Switzerland, June 15, 1982.
San Marino, Aug. 29, 1982. A rare papal visit to the independent microstate in northern Italy.
Spain, Oct. 31-Nov. 9, 1982, where 14 million people saw him.
Central America, March 2-10, 1983. Visits to Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Panama, El Salvador, Guatemala, Belize and Honduras and Haiti, with a stopover in Lisbon, Portugal. Took place at the height of civil wars in Nicaragua, El Salvador and Guatemala in which different factions of the church took opposing sides.
Poland, June 16-23, 1983. Toward the end of the period of martial law imposed with the repression of the Solidarity movement in Dec. 1981 and a few months before its leader, Lech Walesa, was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.
Lourdes, France, Aug. 14-15, 1983.
Austria, Sept. 10-13, 1983.
South Korea, Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands and Thailand, May 2-12, 1984, with a stopover of several hours in Fairbanks, Alaska. Again, not many Catholics present.
Switzerland, June 12-17, 1984.
Canada, Sept. 9-20, 1984.
Spain, the Dominican Republic and Puerto Rico, Oct. 10-12, 1984.
Venezuela, Ecuador, Peru, Trinidad and Tobago, Jan. 26-Feb. 6, 1985.
Belgium, the Netherlands and Luxembourg, May 11-21, 1985.
Togo, Ivory Coast, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Zaire, Kenya and Morocco, Aug. 8-19, 1985.
Liechtenstein, Sept. 8, 1985. A brief trip to yet another European microstate.
India, Feb. 1-10, 1986.
Colombia, July 1-7, 1986. With a stopover of several hours in St. Lucia.
France, Oct. 4-7, 1986.
Australia, New Zealand, Bangladesh, Fiji, Singapore and the Seychelles, Nov. 19-Dec. 1, 1986.
Uruguay, Chile and Argentina, March 31-April 13, 1987. The second World Youth Day, the international gathering of Catholic youth John Paul II instituted, was held in Buenos Aires (the first was held in Rome in 1985).
West Germany, April 30-May 4, 1987.
Poland, June 8-14, 1987. During period of liberalization carried out by government in last years of Communism.
United States and Canada, Sept. 10-20, 1987.
Uruguay, Bolivia, Peru and Paraguay, May 7-18, 1988.
Austria, June 23-27, 1988.
Zimbabwe, Botswana, Lesotho, Swaziland and Mozambique, with a detour through South Africa, Sept. 10-19, 1988.
France, Oct. 8-11, 1988.
Madagascar, Reunion, Zambia and Malawi, April 28-May 6, 1989.
Norway, Iceland, Finland, Denmark and Sweden, June 1-10, 1989. Scandinavia is almost entirely Lutheran.
Spain, Aug. 19-21, 1989, for World Youth Day in Santiago de Compostela.
South Korea, Indonesia, East Timor and Mauritius, Oct. 6-16, 1989. East Timor at the time was a mainly Catholic former Portuguese colony that had been taken over by mainly Muslim Indonesia.
Cape Verde, Guinea Bissau, Mali and Burkina Faso, Jan. 25-Feb. 1, 1990.
Czechoslovakia, April 21-22, 1990. A few months after the Velvet Revolution ended Communism in the historically Catholic country.
Mexico and Curaçao, May 6-13, 1990.
Malta, May 25-27, 1990.
Tanzania, Rwanda, Burundi and Ivory Coast, Sept. 1-10, 1990.
Portugal, May 10-13, 1991.
Poland, June 1-9, 1991. His first visit since the Communist collapse in 1989.
Poland and Hungary, Aug. 13-20, 1991. His first visit to Hungary, which, like Poland, is a mostly Catholic and formerly Communist country. World Youth Day was held in Czestochowa, a Polish Catholic holy site.
Brazil, Oct. 12-20, 1991.
Senegal, Gambia and Guinea, Feb. 19-26, 1992.
Angola and São Tome and Principe, June 4-10, 1992.
Dominican Republic, Oct. 9-14, 1992.
Benin, Uganda and Sudan, Feb. 3-10, 1993.
Albania, April 25, 1993. A drastically poor, mainly Muslim country recovering from the end of Communism.
Spain, June 12-17, 1993.
Jamaica, Mexico and World Youth Day in Denver, Aug. 9-16, 1993.
Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia, Sept. 4-10, 1993. Ex-Soviet republics with varying numbers of Catholics.
Croatia, Sept. 10-11, 1994, during the strongly Catholic former Yugoslav republic's wars against Orthodox Serbia.
The Philippines, Australia, Papua New Guinea and Sri Lanka, Jan. 12-21, 1995. World Youth Day was held in Manila in the strongly Catholic Philippines.
Czech Republic, Poland, May 20-22, 1995.
Belgium, June 3-4, 1995.
Slovakia, June 30-July 3, 1995. Two and a half years after Czechoslovakia peacefully split in two.
Cameroon, South Africa, Kenya, Sept. 14-20, 1995.
United States, Oct. 4-8, 1995.
Guatemala, El Salvador, Nicaragua and Venezuela, Feb. 5-11, 1996.
Tunisia, April 14, 1996. An almost entirely Muslim country.
Slovenia, May 17-19, 1996. Another mainly Catholic ex-Yugoslav republic.
Germany, June 21-23, 1996. His first visit since East and West Germany were unified in 1991.
Hungary, Sept. 6-7, 1996.
France, Sept. 19-22, 1996.
Bosnia-Herzegovina, April 12-13, 1997. The country that saw the fiercest fighting among Catholics, Orthodox Christians and Muslims as Yugoslavia disintegrated.
Czech Republic, April 25-27, 1997.
Lebanon, May 10-11, 1997. His first visit to that Arab country with a sizeable Catholic minority.
Poland, May 31-June 10, 1997.
France, Aug. 21-24, 1997. World Youth Day in Paris.
Brazil, Oct. 2-5, 1997.
Cuba, Jan. 21-25, 1998. The last remaining Communist and Catholic country.
Nigeria, March 21-23, 1998. Visit occurred as Christian-Muslim strife began to escalate.
Austria, June 19-21, 1998.
Croatia, Oct. 2-4, 1998.
Mexico City, St. Louis, Jan. 22-27, 1999.
Romania, May 7-9, 1999. A former Warsaw Pact nation with few Catholics.
Poland, June 5-17, 1999.
Slovenia, Sept. 19, 1999.
India and the former Soviet republic of Georgia, Nov. 5-9, 1999.
Egypt, Feb. 24-26, 2000. Another Muslim country with few Catholics, but with a small Coptic Christian minority.
Jordan, Israel and the Palestinian territories, March 20-26, 2000. The Pope's pilgrimage to the Holy Land, fulfilling a lifelong goal. While there are few Catholics in the region, the Church maintains a strong presence at Christian sites in Jerusalem.
Fatima, Portugal, May 12-13, 2000.
Greece, Syria, Malta, May 4-9, 2001. The Greek Orthodox Church was outraged at what it viewed as a Roman incursion into its territory.
Ukraine, June 23-27, 2001. The Ukrainian Orthodox churches resented what they saw as another Roman attempt to win converts, thereby increasing the significant number of Ukrainian Eastern Rite Catholics.
Kazakhstan and Armenia, Sept. 22-27, 2001.
Azerbaijan and Bulgaria, May 23-26, 2002. Azerbaijan is a mainly Muslim former Soviet republic; formerly communist Bulgaria is mainly Orthodox.
Toronto (World Youth Day), Guatemala, and Mexico, July 22-Aug. 1, 2002. The pope canonized the first indigenous Mexican Indian saint and beatified two other Mexican Indians.
Poland, Aug. 16-19, 2002. John Paul II sleeps in his old bed, visits his old street and drives by the disused quarry where he labored during the Nazi occupation.
Spain, May 3-4, 2003. Pope John Paul II proclaims five new saints before a crowd of 1 million people in Madrid.
Croatia, June 5-9, 2003. John Paul II beatifies a Croatian nun during his 100th foreign trip as pope.
Bosnia and Herzegovina, June 22, 2003. Pope asks God's forgiveness for "so much suffering and bloodshed" inflicted by Roman Catholics and others in this the region during two 20th-century wars.
Slovakia, Sept. 11-14, 2003. A frail pope struggles to celebrate Mass for tens of thousands of pilgrims.
Pompei, Oct. 7, 2003. John Paul II makes a pilgrimage to a shrine to the Virgin Mary near Naples.
Switzerland, June 5-6, 2004. John Paul II visits with the young Catholics of Switzerland, holds Mass at Allmend Park.
France, Aug. 14-15, 2004. Pope travels to Lourdes for the 150th anniversary of the promulgation of the dogma of the immaculate conception.