11 Gifts for the Camino de Santiago Pilgrim

What can you give to the peregrino who is going to trek the Camino de Santiago? What should you put on your wish list if you are the one who will be taking the pilgrimage? Gear up with these items.


John Brierley's guide to the Camino is regarded as the best for the Camino Frances (French Way) popular route. It will be the pilgrim's companion throughout their journey. He also has books for the other routes.


A Buff is standard pilgrim gear, you can wear it as a head scarf, neck scarf, balaclava, dust mask, sleep mask, etc. This Buff is special as it is printed with a map of the Camino de Santiago. It is UV-protecting, too.


Many people have been inspired to walk the Camino by the movie The Way. This is the OTHER way - a wonderful award-winning documentary following six different pilgrims as they walk the Camino. It gives a much more rounded vision of what the Camino entails, while fueling wanderlust. Read my review of Walking the Camino: Six Ways to Santiago for more details.


Most Camino walkers use trekking poles. It's wise to train with the poles before the Camino. These poles are inexpensive and they compact down to 24.5 inches for packing. They adjust up to 54 inches tall.


This lightweight pack is recommended by many veteran peregrinos. It comes in a couple of sizes and in several colors. It has a gender-specific hip belt to place the load at the right spot, and has zippered pockets for the things you want to keep handy. The Stow-and-Go trekking pole attachment loops are very handy. There is a removeable top pocket, handy for taking items with you to the shower.


The rain in Spain isn't just mainly on the plain. You are almost guaranteed to have a rainy day (or several) walking through Galicia to Santiago de Compostela. This trekker rain poncho has many advantages. The hook-and-loop closing wrists will help keep arms dry, unlike ponchos with wide, flapping armholes. There is a built-in pack cover in back, essential for keeping your pack dry on the Camino while still covering your rear. The front zip with storm flap makes it easier to put on and take off than non-zippered designs. It also has front vents so you won't get as steamy inside.


This ultralight raincover cinches around the backpack to keep it dry. It's an essential for the Camino pilgrim.


Bed bugs are the scourge of the Camino, especially for those staying at the albergue hostels. This lightweight liner will keep away the bed bugs. I slept in it throughout my walk on the Camino and it was quite comfortable and easy to slip into and out of.


Pilgrims typically carry only one change of clothes, so they are washing every night. This portable laundry system doubles as a dry bag - you can store items in it to keep them dry in your backpack. But it also is a handy hand-powered washing machine with built-in washboard for doing laundry at the hostel or your hotel room. I used it on my Camino and I loved its dual-duty as a dry bag.


Blisters happen, especially on the Camino. Peregrinos need to use blister prep during their training at home, and take a full tube along on the trek. HikeGoo is the best lubricant I've tried for all-day, long distance walking.


It's a pain to try to blog or keep a diary using only your smartphone virtual keyboard. This 0.39 pound folding Bluetooth keyboard measures 6.5x4.5x0.3 inches and will easily fit into your Camino pack. Unfold it and voila, now you have a keyboard to use for recording your thoughts with ease during your Camino journey. Put this on your wish list.


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