New 2013 edition now available on Kindle.
This guide to preparation for the Camino contains the following sections:
Planning and Preparation: advice on when to walk, which part to walk, what to bring (clothes, equipment, etc.), what not to bring (very important), travelling to starting points, internet resources and budgeting.
On the Camino: advice and information about what to expect on the Camino. Terrain, waymarkings, accommodation, food and drink, money matters, keeping in touch (telephone, internet, etc.), health – with advice on staying healthy and accessing the Spanish health service, Camino administration, etiquette and safety – staying safe and planning for any eventuality.
The Caminos: information about the other Caminos, a list of books about the Caminos and pilgrim statistics, with the most popular starting points, nationalities, routes and busiest months.
History: the History section aims to give you an understanding of the historical background to the Camino and the role it played in the foundation of modern Spain and Europe. It contains a history of Spain, and a history of the Camino from its beginnings to its revival, in the late 20th century. There’s also an account of life on the Camino in the middle-ages, the people who walked then, and the hardships and hazards they faced.
Society, Culture & Environment: a brief outline of the fascinating mosaic that is modern Spain, its politics, cultures and peoples. The natural environment of northern Spain and the impact of the Camino on it. A description of the architectural styles and periods you’ll see along the Camino.
Communicating: advice on making yourself understood and understanding others, with a Menu Guide and the most useful Spanish words and phrases for Camino life, plus a few phrases in Basque and Galician.
Glossary: a concise reference for many Camino-related persons and things.
This new edition, published in September 2013, has been extensively changed, updated and expanded based on feedback and criticisms received from readers over the past two years, and the author's experiences of walking various Caminos during that time.
Most of the changes and additions are in the areas:
- Packing, what to bring: with the different packing options listed in detail, and the pros and cons of different items explained.
- A typical Camino day is described, from waking at the crack of dawn, to bedding down at nightfall.
- There's detailed information about how Pilgrim Hostels work, and what it's like to stay in one.
- Health: blisters, bedbugs, heatstroke, and other Camino hazards, are described with advice on avoiding them and dealing with them.
Thanks to everybody for their feedback and their help with this new edition. ¡Buen Camino!