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Camino de Santiago Packing List

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The following is a comprehensive list of my usual kit for hiking the Camino de Santiago.  For reference, I have 4 successful camino’s under my belt (plus one failed attempt 😉 ) as well as several other long distance hikes that have helped me to curate this list.  I hope you find it useful and, as always, feel free to leave a comment or suggestion!

Backpack – This is your most important piece of gear.  Your backpack is your home for B015SBMXV4the next 25+ days.  Make sure it fits comfortably and you know how to pack it properly.  Fits varies so go try them on!!  REI, Gander Mountain, Cabela’s – there are tons of options.  I have used a variety of bags, but the last 3 years I have stuck with my Gregory Jade 38L.  It’s relatively lightweight and easy to pack.

Shoes – Wear what you are comfortable in.  Hiking boots are too B00D1NB83Gheavy for me but perfect for others.  I prefer lightweight trail running shoes like Merrell Grassbow Air’s. I am on my 4th pair and they have always fit perfect from the start.  TIP – you will be walking long distances every day for many days in a row.  Your feet will most likely swell.  I buy my shoes a half size larger than my regular size to compensate for the swelling.

Fanny Pack – I know a fanny pack isn’t all that sexy, however, it is super convenient B00H8L4960when hiking.  Keep all your important documents as well as anything you may need for the day right where you can grab em’.  All else can go in your bag.

  • Passport (Some prefer a holder  to keep it on their body at all times – whatever works)
  • Euros – I use my ATM card to withdraw small amounts each week.
  • Plane tickets
  • credential
  • Guide Book – I prefer the John Brierley guidebook as it has proven most useful of the ones I have tried.
  • Pen – you’d be shocked how many people travel without a pen!!
  • Debit/credit card – Schwab has no foreign transaction fees.  🙂
  • Insurance card
  • Small alarm or watch that you can read in the dark – I use a FitBit Inspire now.  It’s awesome to see my step count at the end of the day!
  • Headlamp – there are tons to choose from – try to get one with a red setting so you can use it in the albergues without waking others

Clothing – aim for lightweight, fast drying items.

  • 2 short sleeve shirts or tanks
  • 1 Long sleeve shirt  –
  • 1 Lightweight zip up fleece
  • 1 pair pants
  • 1 pair leggings
  • 2 shorts – running shorts with built in undies do it for me.
  • 2 pairs underwear – Ladies, I recommend boy shorts and am quite fond of Exofficio’s.  In most places the living area is communal as are the drying racks.  😉
  • 3 pair sock liners
  • Lightweight dress (easy to throw on after a shower, dries quickly)


  • Jacket – I run cold so I always have layers. I’ve had my North Face for so long it is now discontinued, but a similar option can be found HERE.
  • Rain gear
  • Sunglasses – You are walking in the sun EVERYDAY!  Sunglasses are essential.
  • Large brim hat for sun (recommended) – this is where I skimp and use a baseball hat instead.
  • Large scarf – I use this when it’s cold, as a pillow cover, or on the ground for a mid day nap.
  • Hiking poles – Using poles correctly can reduce stress from your knees. In 2005, on my first camino I saw only one German couple using poles.  By the time I went back in 2012, at least half of the pilgrims had poles.  In recent years almost everyone uses poles.  Do everyone a favor and put rubber tips on the ends.  No one wants to hear you clicking through the city at 5am!
  • Water bladder or bottle.  I’ve gone both routes.  I now prefer a CamelBack Eddy with the hands free adapter. It acts as a straw to your bottle and it’s easier to fill and clean than a bladder plus you can see how much water you have left throughout the day.
  • Extra shoelaces + safety pins – for either shoes or to use as a clothesline
  • Flip flops – for showers and after walking.  I took a cheapo pair a few years back and they broke halfway.  I’ve since switched to Havaianas and have never looked back.

First Aid

  • Advil, ibuprofen, aspirin – whatever your pain reliever of choice
  • Compeed/bandaids – trust me, if you don’t use them, someone you know will
  • Disinfecting wipes
  • Ace bandage
  • Lighter
  • Tweezers
  • A tennis ball to roll your feet on after walking all day!


  • Phone/charger
  • Bug spray
  • Swimsuit
  • Ear plugs
  • Quick Dry towel – I have the L version.
  • Sleep sack / bag liner – Some albergues have sheets but others don’t.  If you’re hiking in cooler months you may need something a bit heavier…
  • I run cold so I bring a fleece sleeping bag/liner with me.  It is certainly not a necessity in the summer months but I adore mine!
  • Sun umbrella – if there is ONE luxury item that I suggest to every hiker it is the sun umbrella.  Not only does it help to block sun and provide a bit of shade, it can double as a regular umbrella when it rains.  Go Lite used to make a great umbrella but they have since folded shop.  I found and bought THIS one as a replacement and it’s nearly identical.


  • Toothbrush/paste
  • Sunscreen
  • Shampoo/conditioner
  • Wipes
  • Razor – if you’re into that sort of thing
  • Chapstick
  • Floss
  • Deodorant
  • Baby powder
  • Nail clippers
  • 3 oz of liquid Tide for washing clothes