What to take on el Camino de Santiago
What to take on el Camino de Santiago?
This is quite possibly the biggest and most important decision that you will make prior to commencing your Camino. Once you have started you will be pretty much stuck with what you have got. This means that if you forget something, or if you have not taken enough, you will simply have to make do with what you have got.
Equally, if you “over provision” by taking, e.g. too many clothes, you will be reminded of the fact every minute of every day as you carry them around with you.
The golden rule is to take everything that you need, but nothing more.
In the modern world we wear fresh clean clothes everyday and launder clothes as and when required. These are luxuries that you cannot afford on a Camino (unless you have your baggage forwarded and your clothing laundered by a tour company).
You need to think carefully about “wants” and “needs” and “luxuries” versus “necessities”. Failing to do so can lead to problems from the beginning to the end of your Camino.
When planning what to take with you think about how long this rip is going to be. You have been booked luggage transport but you will have to take some personal belongings with you plus the many things you will be finding and purchasing during the route so pay attention on this.
To begin with, you need a lightweight yet sturdy back pack. You ideally want a back pack that has waist and chest straps and a frame that will allow the sweat to escape from your back. Don’t buy anything bigger than a 55 litre back pack, most people seem to take a pack in the region of 40-50 litres, you will only need a larger one if you plan to take a sleeping bag with you.
Obviously depending on which time of year you undertake your Camino, the contents of your pack will differ slightly.
Firstly consider the clothing you will take.
You will need some walking trousers and shorts. There are a number of different types around but it may be worth buying a pair of zip off trousers. These allow you to zip off the bottom part converting the trousers into shorts.
Take a couple of T-shirts. I would recommend wicking T-shirts, these take the sweat away from your body and are pretty quick drying too, an essential requirement when drying facilities may not be adequate.
Take a couple of pairs of socks, possibly 3. You will notice that most people wash their socks most nights, so it is always handy to have a spare. The best socks to take are a Coolmax liner type, your feet are going to get very hot and these are ideal. You may want to take along a pair of padded hiking socks to give you extra comfort.
Take some underwear but probably no more than a couple of pairs, again you can wash these each day.
Another good thing to take is a lightweight rainproof jacket. Something like a pack-a-mac is ideal. Even if you decide to do your Camino in the summer months there is always a likelihood of rain, particularly in the mountains. Waterproof over-trousers are also a good idea. Take a warm, but lightweight fleece, something like a micro-fleece. Again up in the mountains it can get very cold and even in summer months you will get the occasional chilly night.
After the many kilometres you have walked….(continues)
… there are many other things we suggest you to take with you and some others you won’t possibly need. If you want to know all our recommendations please suscribe to our newsletter (in the up right hand side of this page) and we will send you a pdf document with everything you must know about it.