Everything You Need To Do The Camino De Santiago

The Camino de Santiago is one of the most popular pilgrimage routes in the world, but to make it you need to have well organized everything you may need along the way
Everything you need to do the Camino de Santiago

Together with those to Jerusalem and Rome, the Camino de Santiago is one of the three great pilgrimages of Christianity. In addition to all that it represents on a spiritual level, it is also a tourist, cultural and sporting attraction.

It is a journey that year after year attracts pilgrims and tourists from all over the world. What do you need to do the Camino de Santiago ?

The Camino de Santiago: geographical delimitation

It is said that the Camino de Santiago begins at the doorstep of all those who wish to make the pilgrimage. The most popular route is the French way; whose starting point can be located in Roncesvalles, in the Comunidad Foral de Navarra.

The route also starts from Saint Jean Pied de Port, in France, 27.5 kilometers to the east; the full distance from this city to Santiago de Compostela is 727.6 kilometers.

Another form known to complete the pilgrimage is the Cammino del Norte or that of the coast. This route runs  parallel to the “Camino de los Francos”, bordering the Cantabrian coast.

Girl walks on the grass wearing trekking shoes

Everything you need to do the Camino de Santiago

Regardless of the reasons that drive you to take this long walk, the most important things to do the Camino de Santiago are will and determination. From now on, the next thing to do is plan the route in the best possible way, also taking into account the time you have to complete the journey.

The route along the French route, from the border with the Gallic country to the Jacobin temple, is at least 31 days, always considering that there are no delays and that the weather is good.

When to go

The route can take place at any time of the year, considering the advantages and disadvantages of each season. July is the month with the most people, which can cause problems to find a place to spend the night.

Prepare physically and mentally

The route can be done by anyone.  Those who do not exercise very often may have some difficulties.

If you want to receive  La Compostela, a  diploma issued by ecclesiastical activities, which “certifies” that you have completed the journey, you must travel at least the last 100 km. If you are traveling on horseback or by bicycle, the minimum distance is 200 kilometers.

The Camino de Santiago by bicycle

 Basic equipment

When you pack your bags with everything you need to do the Camino de Santiago, you have to stick to one fundamental principle: travel light.  Many of the hikers eventually stop the adventure and decide to go by other means of transportation because they carry too much weight. The main thing is:

  • A 40 liter capacity backpack. If you make the route in winter, you will need to have an additional 20 liters of volume to add clothing needed to combat low temperatures. (12 kg in the cold season).
  • Trekking shoes. For moments of rest, flip flops or other similar shoes.
  • Two shirts for the course,  plus one for moments of rest. Three shorts in the warm months and mandatory long in the winter. In addition, two changes of underwear and socks, possibly without seams.
  • Essential accessories at any time of the year:  hat and light jacket. During the winter, a hat, scarf and gloves are required.
  • Sleeping bag and a small mat,  in case you need to sleep outdoors or on the ground.

Hygiene and cleaning products

Always keeping the principle of traveling as light as possible, all products should be in a reduced size. Basic hygiene products consist of liquid soap (which can also be used as a shampoo), handkerchiefs, toilet paper and a towel.

Don’t forget to include sunscreen. Likewise, it is mandatory to bring a small kit with gauze, bandage, scissors, tweezers, antiseptics (lodopovidone or betamine) and analgesic (paracetamol).

Where to sleep

In most of the routes, there are public shelters on the road; they are spaces administered by municipalities, dioceses or neighborhood associations.

Many of these places are free; among those that have any type of tariff, the prices are very cheap (maximum 12 euros). Each has its own characteristics, standards and services, such as laundry, kitchen and showers.

There are private hotels, clubs whose price is slightly higher (18 euros on average). You can also book a hotel with all its services. This option breaks away from the classic pilgrimage spirit, as well as being very expensive.

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