to Pack for the Camino de Santiago in Spain
Sharma Cortez, eHow Contributor
lighter the pack, the better.
For the pilgrimage to Santiago, you need only pack
essentials. You don't need to carry a tent, for
instance, because you can stay in pilgrim hostels
called albergues. If you travel in the summer, you
won't have to carry heavy sleeping or camping gear.
Travelers often carry extra copies of passport,
airline information or itineraries which could be
stored on a flash drive. Because you will carry
everything you bring as you walk across Spain, the
lighter your load the greater your flexibility and
1. Do not pack for a just-in-case scenario or you
will weigh yourself down. With a pilgrimage in mind,
it is easier to travel without conveniences that
bring weight and distraction into the equation.
On a pilgrimage less really is more.
2. One reason to pack only essentials and keep your
backpack light is to protect your feet. Foot injuries
range from simple strains, bruises or blisters to
more complex problems such as breaks, sprains or
torn tendons. Even blisters, a common complaint
for pilgrims, can become serious if not treated
properly. As you walk along the Camino you will
become increasingly aware of your feet. Hiking boots
provide stability and protect your ankles while
you walk. Choose a second option like sandals which
are lightweight and help your feet relax and breathe
after a long day. They can also provide a dressier
option if needed. Other items for your feet include
extra socks, a blister-treatment kit and anti-fungal
3. Pack to protect your head and body from the sun.
A bandanna is a lightweight and versatile item,
so take at least two. Pack a small container of
sunscreen and take sunglasses and lip protection.
Bring empty bottles for drinking water.
4. Pack the kind of clothing that makes sense given
summertime and climate change. Clothing made of
light breathable fabric (not jeans) and a few changes
of clothes will serve you well. Linen or cotton
pants, shorts and tops wear well. Some women bring
a cotton skirt, which is versatile. Even in summer
a light shell or jacket may be helpful for chilly
5. When you pack sleeping gear be sure to include
the following: lightweight sleeping bag, travel
pillow, ear plugs, nightshirt, mosquito repellent
and flashlight or headlamp. These are basics that
will enhance the quality of your sleep.
6. Place your toiletries in zip-lock bags, bringing
enough for a week. Plan on replenishing your supplies
as needed -- all your essentials can be bought along
Bring your passport and any visas required and pack
with other important documents or travel itineraries.
Keep prescriptions in original prescription bottles
when you pack and bring original scripts in case
you need replacements or refills.
Remember cultural distinctions and adapt when necessary
to avoid misunderstandings especially regarding
attire while attending religious services.
If you are concerned about rash or skin irritation
between legs wear cycling shorts.
Give a copy of your proposed itinerary to others
and check in via Internet or telephone to keep them
People beginning the day before sunrise may prefer
headlamps to flashlights.
Make sure that your packed items conform with security
policies at airports.
If you get hurt, consult a physician to determine
the extent of the injury and propose treatment.
If you fall, ask for help and ice the injured area.
Light sleeping bag
Sleeping bag (light)
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