You have two options: dress up like you are going on a safari, or wear regular and comfortable clothes. I favor the second choice. I’ll tell you what I put in my backpack:
- 2 pairs of shorts
- 1 pair of long pants (the kind where you can remove the pant legs are practical
- 3 shirts, 1 sweatshirt in case it gets cool
- 4 pairs of socks
- 2 sets of undergarments (cotton, if possible)
- hower sandals (and to air out your feet)
- wide-brimmed hat (better than a cap)
- boots or tennis shoes (trainers), whatever works best for you, but always broken in. Do not even think about wearing them for the first time on the Camino.
- a medium-sized lightweight towel
- sleeping bag (appropriate for the season of the year)
- thin roll-up mat for sleeping
- walking stick – it is better if you find one or are given one on the Camino
- rain poncho – it should cover your backpack too
- small first-aid kit – disinfectant (like Betadine), bandaids, gauze, scissors, needle and thread, anti-inflammatory cream, anti-diarrhea pills. Careful! Don’t be a walking pharmacy. If you need something along the route, you will be able to find everything.
- toilet paper (very useful at certain times)
- documents, credential, credit cards
- a Camino guidebook and something to write with
- a scallop shell so people can see you are a pilgrim
- you don’t need a canteen because you can manage with a small water bottle; there are many water fountains on the Camino
- and, if you like, a small camera
Make sure this is all placed well in your backpack. Make sure it is comfortable and is adjusted to put the weight on your hips. The more compact and well-balanced the weight is, the better you will feel. Your body will thank you.