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Reading while on the Camino

Dani7

Stop wishing, start doing.
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances
When the time is right
🙂 Hello :) Camino peregrinos!

I am considering purchasing an e-reader with downloaded books to read along the way but it got me thinking. I do like to read fiction for pleasure and have so little time to read now due to busy days...I miss it. Thought hey...I could get a whole lot of reading done while on my Camino. This got me thinking some more.... with fatigue settling in at the end of the walk...meal times and some socializing...will I even feel like reading...or have much time to do so. I'm an early riser so most days I should finish my daily trek early enough.

And so I ask all of you...did anyone bring an e-reader with intention to read...and...was it worthwhile? I understand my question is quite subjective based on your experience, but I find your posts on the whole quite educational while providing worthy food for thought.

Thanks in advance to all those that post 🙏 🙂
 

Bradypus

Moderator
Staff member
Camino(s) past & future
Too many and too often!
Not an e-reader as such but e-books on my smartphone. I do occasionally use it to look at guidebooks and so on. At home I sometimes read books that way. I usually load a few novels or history books too for my travels with the idea that I might read them in the evening. But I rarely do in practice :cool: But since I am carrying my phone anyway having them available doesn't add anything to my load.
 

dougfitz

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Spain: Mar 2010, Apr 2014, May/Jun 2016. Norway/Sweden: 2012, 2018. Other: 2011, 2019. CP (tbc)
Rather than a dedicated e-reader, I have downloaded my reader apps onto a small tablet and used that. My wife has used one of the larger Apple i-phone models as reader rather than carry her somewhat larger tablet.
 

jsalt

Jill
Camino(s) past & future
Portugués, Francés, LePuy, Rota Vicentina, Norte, Madrid, C2C, Salvador, Primitivo, Aragonés, Inglés
I have Kindle on my smartphone and download lots of books for reading on the camino. I read every night in the albergues, snuggled down inside my sleeping bag, long past everyone else has gone to sleep. Just change the font to large or small to suit your own eyesight.
 

TAF

Member
Camino(s) past & future
July/Aug 2019 Logrono to Sahagun
May 2020 SJPP to Logrono
I left my kindle at home but read my books on the Kindle app on my phone instead. I really enjoyed wandering down to a bar after I had finished walking for the day and sitting there with a nice glass of wine whilst I read.
 
D

Deleted member 67185

Guest
I never felt much like recreational reading during Camino, but I have a Kindle App on my iPhone which would have provided such use. Personally, I wouldn't carry the weight of a mono-use, dedicated e-reader device. :)
 

Dani7

Stop wishing, start doing.
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances
When the time is right
I never felt much like recreational reading during Camino, but I have a Kindle App on my iPhone which would have provided such use. Personally, I wouldn't carry the weight of a mono-use, dedicated e-reader device. :)
I have an iPhone 8 so screen is not that big. Good point though.
 

CdnDreamer

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (12, 15 & 18) San Salvador (18), Portuguese (19)
I took a nook (Barnes and Noble e-reader) with me on one camino. I don't think I ever got it out of my pack. I love to read, but most nights on the camino I'm in bed by 8:30 or 9 and sound asleep right after. I found my days too full to have time to read. It just depends on how much socializing you want to do. I also tried to keep a diary each day, and that was a challenge as well. @TAF's idea of a glass of wine and a book sounds lovely, but it didn't work out for me.
 

KinkyOne

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
I'am not perfect, but I'm always myself!!!
Sorry, can't help you because I'm ALWAYS carrying "real" book anywhere I go. Even on Camino and then people staring at me like I'm from 19th Century :D :D :D

BTW, try to wipe your "behind" when out of TP with smart phone or tablet ;)
 

domigee

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
2020? Looks like.... nowhere! 😁
I have an iPhone 8 so screen is not that big. Good point though.
Hi Dani7! I never thought I would enjoy reading from my phone (a normal size iphone 8) but... I do. Try it at home, download the free Kindle App. and have a go. I convinced a friend of mine who previously carried her e-reader everywhere, she was surprised.
I read an awful lot on long pilgrimages and on shorter but lonely ones, always on my phone. It’s a very good idea to have it available (but imo not worth the extra weight of a special reader🙂)
 
D

Deleted member 67185

Guest
Sorry, can't help you because I'm ALWAYS carrying "real" book anywhere I go. Even on Camino and then people staring at me like I'm from 19th Century :D :D :D

BTW, try to wipe your "behind" when out of TP with smart phone or tablet ;)
What???? You don't yet have the 'Personal Tissue' app? I also have the 'Portable Camino Toilet' app installed. . although I refused to pay for the Premium version, so I have to contend with ads which pop up at the most inconvenient times, and I don't get the 'Flushing Sound' add-on.
 
Camino(s) past & future
CF 2018
Like many others I took the Kindle app, and also Audible books on my phone with bluetooth earphones so that I couls ‘read’ anywhere. I never did - listening to a book whilst walking would have felt intrusive, and at night I was just way too tired. 🙄👣👣
 

KinkyOne

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
I'am not perfect, but I'm always myself!!!
What???? You don't yet have the 'Personal Tissue' app? I also have the 'Portable Camino Toilet' app installed. . although I refused to pay for the Premium version, so I have to contend with ads which pop up at the most inconvenient times, and I don't get the 'Flushing Sound' add-on.
I'm just not that tech savvy, Dave :D :D :D
 

GettingThere

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Roncesvalles-SdC Apr-Jun 2015
Roncesvalles-Sarria Sep-Oct 2017
C. Frances sections Apr-Jun 2019
I've carried a separate e-reader on each of my caminos (an old Sony first, then a Kobo). Small-ish screen at about 6 inch, so not much bigger than a phone but I find it so much easier than reading on a smart phone that to me it's worth the (minimal) extra weight. The e-ink display is easier on the eyes and can be read outside in the sun if that's where you want to sit and read. The device doesn't heat up as much as a phone and the battery lasts far longer, so you're not using up your phone battery constantly. I have used an app on my phone and it's ok, but I wouldn't want to use it all the time. That's all just my personal preference. I'm a voracious reader at all times, and could never not bring books to read, however physically demanding my day-to-day activity - the thought of being book-less makes me anxious even to contemplate!

In my earlier backpacking days I would take real books like @KinkyOne and would be constantly looking for shops that sold English books (or hostels with swap shelves) to replace them, as I also read quickly. The one time I only took one book away with me on a 6-week trip thinking it would be a slow read and I would be too occupied or tired to read - I finished it in three days and had to go looking for more!

When I saw the thread title I was expecting a torrent of responses along the lines of "you won't have time to read", or "step out of your comfort zone and leave the books at home" which I have seen before. Glad to see understanding fellow readers responding!
 

domigee

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
2020? Looks like.... nowhere! 😁
Sorry, can't help you because I'm ALWAYS carrying "real" book anywhere I go. Even on Camino and then people staring at me like I'm from 19th Century :D :D :D
I wasn’t ‘phone savvy’ on my first camino and really missed books. In a Sarria albergue, I finally found a book! Yes! A Swedish novel translated to English.
I took it to the roof terrace and finished it that evening with my torch light 😁 My pilgrim friends assumed I was out partying 🙄😂
 

jsalt

Jill
Camino(s) past & future
Portugués, Francés, LePuy, Rota Vicentina, Norte, Madrid, C2C, Salvador, Primitivo, Aragonés, Inglés
I used to (actually I still do) take a really thick really old paperback from a second hand bookshop on a backpacking trip, and use the pages I’d read the night before to start the campfire at the next overnight stop (unlike K who uses it for TP 🤣). It used to be possible to exchange real books at hostels. But that has long gone. Then there was a REALLY REALLY LONG BLEAK period. NO real books. NO plug points in albergue dorms. But NOW I can usually find a bed with a plug point close by to charge my super long smartphone cable while I am reading . . . . snuggled up in my sleeping bag . . . . or all alone at a bar sipping a glass of vino as @TAF mentioned above on the more remote or out of season caminos . . . .
 

KinkyOne

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
I'am not perfect, but I'm always myself!!!
...
The one time I only took one book away with me on a 6-week trip thinking it would be a slow read and I would be too occupied or tired to read - I finished it in three days and had to go looking for more!
...
I know that's almost stealing the thread but by now I know how fast/slow I read books in English which isn't my native language. Therefore I get a thick but lightweight paperback with small fonts and it lasts for whole Camino. Only once I read it to the end in the evening sitting outside SdC airport waiting for my early morning flight home ;)
 

C clearly

Moderator
Staff member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (2012, 2014, 2015, 2016), VDLP (2017), Mozarabe (2018), Vasco/Bayona (2019)
I find that I don't have the urge to read much when on the Camino, except for the browsing, blogging, research that I "need" to do and my phone can handle.

On the Camino, I don't want to take myself out of the Camino time and place and put myself (in my mind) in another fictional time and place. I like to have an emergency book with me (usually on my phone) but it will be set in Spain (either fiction or non-fiction).
 

martin1ws

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Somport to Finisterre Jul-Aug 2018; Munich to Lindau (Germany) Sep 2020
It depends on the camino and the season for me. I walked Camino Aragones - Frances - Invierno in July & August... I was on my own in the albergues only for 2 times beside the fact that I was on lonelier caminos as well... so after walking and socializing I just fell into my bed most of the time... and for the rest my smartphone and the kindle app was enough.
So I am sure that I will not take an ebook reader or a tablet if I walk something like the Camino Frances or Portugues in the 'normal' season from April to October.
 
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Dave2525

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
2014
I thought it would be a great opportunity to catch up on my reading so I had e-books.

I just never got around to it. There were so many other things to do that by the time I got to bed all I wanted to do was sleep.
 

yddraigfach

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Le Puy 2018
I took my Kindle Paperwhite with me on the Le Puy Route last year - I didn't have a smart phone at that point in time, so didn't have the option of using the Kindle app as others have done above.

I'm a really light sleeper, and every couple of nights I would get woken by someone snoring loudly or going to the bathroom at 4am. I found I just couldn't get back to sleep, and the Kindle was invaluable for filling the time I needed to stay quiet until everyone else started getting up around 6.30am (you get breakfast at your gite on the Le Puy Route, so there isn't the 5am bag rustling that I've heard about on the Frances).

The Kindle even survived a week in my freezer (switched off) after an encounter with bedbugs in Saugues…
 

Camino Chrissy

Take one step forward...then keep on walking..
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 2015;
Norte/Primitivo 2016;
Frances 2017;
Le Puy 2018;
Portuguese/FishermanTr. 2019
I don't read books when I'm on the camino, except for the info I may need from a guidebook which is on my phone.
In the evening I am hunkered down in my bunk or hotel room typing up my day's observations which becomes my journal which I send out nightly to my family and friends via email. I am then ready to shut my eyes after completing this rewarding task..
 
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Bala

Veteran member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances: SJPdP-Burgos, (2015); Burgos-Sarria (2018); Sarria-Santiago (2018).
Frances (2020)
I have the Kindle app on my Galaxy S8 Android. Whenever we travel, I always download a bunch of books, almost always (but not always always) related, and usually (but not always😉), fiction about the particular country I'm going to. Because I love to read and can't imagine being without a book.

I did the same for the Camino. But as it turned out, I very rarely read. I was too taken up with the moment, and what had happened during the day.

The one book I did have on Kindle (left my hard copy at home 😊) was Gitlitz and Davidson's "The Pilgrimage Road to Santiago." I love this book, and the pilgrimage and the world they describe. I read it each night so I knew the history and legends of where I would walk the next day.

The few times I was just never got around to it because I was too exhausted, or had too much to "process" 🤨 I always regretted. I wanted to go back, and look at and think about what I'd walked by, without knowing.

But, to answer answer your original question, I found a smartphone adequate, but rarely found time to read. 🤷‍♀️

Buen Camino. 😊
 
Camino(s) past & future
cycled from Pamplona Sep 2015;Frances, walked from St Jean May/June 2017. Plans to walk Porto 2020
I have had both an "e_reader" (generic) and now and iPad and I find it most useful, for guide books and to keep up to date. The e_books are also useful for those afternoons and its raining and your washing is slowly drying and there is really not much to do (other than drink vino in the bar). There are a couple is historic Camino books that you might find interesting . Cheers
 

gerardcarey

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
CFx2, CPx1
First Camino I took an early kindle. As it did not have decent WiFi I only used it for reading. One battery charge lasted a month!
I would Skype home from internet cafes along the way.
They have mostly disappeared these days.
I finish my days walking by 2pm. It takes an hour to shower then get the laundry done. From 3 to 4pm I'm on my bed reading.
It is one of the best times of the day. Clean body, clean clothing. I'm relaxing, reading, and snoozing for an hour or so.
But I have now become a cell phone carrier. It has the Kindle app.
It's acceptable if not as good as a stand alone kindle.
The best book I've read is Charles Darwin's " Voyage of the Beagle".
Regards
Gerard
 

KinkyOne

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
I'am not perfect, but I'm always myself!!!
Now when I think about reading on Camino a bit more seriously I thought that comparing book vs e-book might have one other significant distinction.

When I was on my first solo Camino (CF, 2011) I had my old-style cell phone and a book. But in 2014 I already had smart phone. And a book. What I remember from that short stretch on CF between Caminos de Madrid (Sahagun) and de Invierno (Ponferrada) is that when I was reading a book never ever anybody interrupted me with a question or anything. But it happened many times on this same Camino and on later ones that when I was reading something (news, this forum etc.) on my smart phone people didn't have any thoughts of interrupting me. But they didn't know whether I'm reading an e-book or just checking my e-mail so I guess a physical book still has some deeper or more important meaning ;)
 

Judit

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
CP Lisbon to Porto Jun/Jul 2018. CP Porto to SdC (Coastal and Spiritual Variant) Jun/Jul 2019
I decided to take my Kindle in both 2018 and 2019 and never regretted it, I got so much more reading done than I ever manage at home. In 2019, I actually got through all the new books I'd bought for the Camino so re-read some of the old ones on my Kindle.

I decided to take the Kindle because at the time I had a phone with a small screen and reading books on it never really worked out for me. In the last month I have bought a new phone with a bigger screen, so I may take that next year instead of the Kindle. And following on from gerard's post above, the Kindle I'm talking about is the very first version of the Kindle, which I've now had for nearly nine years, so it may not last until next year anyway!

I also had Audible audio books downloaded to my phone too. These are great for when you're lying in bed in a darkened albergue dorm and using any sort of light or lighted device to do some proper reading isn't acceptable.
 

cher99840

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
2013, 2017 Camino Frances SJPP-Santiago
2015 St. Olav's Way Oslo-Trondheim
2017 VdlP Seville-Merida
My phone is my ereader (kindle app), camera, journal (notes app), memory aid (voice recorder), as well as communication device. All my valuables stay with me 24/7. (Waist pack with money, credit card, passport and phone). That’s all I want to have to keep with. It’s small enough to wear while sleeping and goes into shower with me. Last thing off before the water is turned on and first thing back on when the water is turned off. Sure it would be more convenient to read on a larger screen as I do at home, but that’s not worth messing with my very manageable system to keep up with my valuables.
 

Karl Oz

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances
Portuguese
Aragones
Sanabres
Piamonte
Elizabethpfad
Like a lot of responders here, I love reading. But I've never taken a book due to the bulk, and only now grudgingly take a phone along these days, and it's no fun trying to read a novel using that. I think on a relatively few days when I finished early in a small isolated village I would have been very pleased to have had a book to-hand. But when finishing later in the day the daily chores of showering and washing seem to occupy my time. Additionally, larges towns seem to coax me into exploring them, leaving little time and often little motivation for reading.
 

kafnorx

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2019)
I loved having my little Kobo reader with me - I could connect to my library by wifi and get new books as needed. It was perfect for me to read in bed with no need for a light or my glasses as you can adjust it to 'night mode' and turn the brightness right down, while increasing the font size too. I probably only read 20 minutes or so before nodding off, and only had to charge it once
 

Karl Oz

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances
Portuguese
Aragones
Sanabres
Piamonte
Elizabethpfad
I loved having my little Kobo reader with me - I could connect to my library by wifi and get new books as needed. It was perfect for me to read in bed with no need for a light or my glasses as you can adjust it to 'night mode' and turn the brightness right down, while increasing the font size too. I probably only read 20 minutes or so before nodding off, and only had to charge it once
Aren't you concerned that it might be stolen during the night if you nod-off while reading it?
 

NorthernLight

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Le Puy to Santiago via the Frances 2012-2013. EPW2015
Aragonese & Frances 2016
Burgos to Muxia 2017
I have library ebooks and the kindle app and some pdfs I eventually want to read, all on my iphone 5. It's handy to have something to read available but personally I don't want the added weight or worry of another reader.
 

Kanga

Moderator
Staff member
Camino(s) past & future
Francés x 5, Le Puy x 2, Arles, Tours, Norte, Madrid, Via de la Plata, Portuguese, Primitivo
Kindle App and Borrow Box on my smartphone. I can’t exist without a book on hand, and am so grateful I no longer have the weight of them in my pack.
 

KinkyOne

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
I'am not perfect, but I'm always myself!!!
I loved having my little Kobo reader with me - I could connect to my library by wifi and get new books as needed. It was perfect for me to read in bed with no need for a light or my glasses as you can adjust it to 'night mode' and turn the brightness right down, while increasing the font size too. I probably only read 20 minutes or so before nodding off, and only had to charge it once
Don't know much about those gadgets but usually I fall asleep while reading (after some time of course). A book is on the floor in the morning and I can easily use it again the next evening. What about e-readers, kindle's etc's??? Do they break? My smartphone screen did. ;)
 

VAtoNC

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
305 miles of the Frances, 2019. Planning another Frances 4/20 and will go the distance this time!
🙂 Hello :) Camino peregrinos!

I am considering purchasing an e-reader with downloaded books to read along the way but it got me thinking. I do like to read fiction for pleasure and have so little time to read now due to busy days...I miss it. Thought hey...I could get a whole lot of reading done while on my Camino. This got me thinking some more.... with fatigue settling in at the end of the walk...meal times and some socializing...will I even feel like reading...or have much time to do so. I'm an early riser so most days I should finish my daily trek early enough.

And so I ask all of you...did anyone bring an e-reader with intention to read...and...was it worthwhile? I understand my question is quite subjective based on your experience, but I find your posts on the whole quite educational while providing worthy food for thought.

Thanks in advance to all those that post 🙏 🙂
I took my Kindle and was very happy I did. I read every evening after dinner.
 

Kittic

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Future
I completed the Frances in May/June of this year. Some said I was mad but I carried a paperback for the entire Way. I think I read four over the thirty days.
 

Hurry Krishna

Indian on the Way
Camino(s) past & future
2009 (from Sarria), 2014 from St Jean Pied de Port, 2016 from Porto, 2018 from Le Puy to Santiago.
🙂 Hello :) Camino peregrinos!

I am considering purchasing an e-reader with downloaded books to read along the way but it got me thinking. I do like to read fiction for pleasure and have so little time to read now due to busy days...I miss it. Thought hey...I could get a whole lot of reading done while on my Camino. This got me thinking some more.... with fatigue settling in at the end of the walk...meal times and some socializing...will I even feel like reading...or have much time to do so. I'm an early riser so most days I should finish my daily trek early enough.

And so I ask all of you...did anyone bring an e-reader with intention to read...and...was it worthwhile? I understand my question is quite subjective based on your experience, but I find your posts on the whole quite educational while providing worthy food for thought.

Thanks in advance to all those that post 🙏 🙂
I never go anywhere without my ipad and have a kindle app with many books on it. Wouldn’t want to be without books to read! well worth the weight of any e-reader. Though some people seem to read happily on their phones.
 

ShaLaw

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances, Sept./Oct. 2015. Future Camino Portuguese in 2022.
I took my iPad mini because it took much better pictures than my phone at the time, and then decided because I was bringing that, why not download some books as well?? I did read most nights, even if it was only just a few pages, and then it was lights out. The only caveat is to make sure that you have the screen dimmed because it can appear to be super bright in a dark room which can annoy your fellow pilgrims.

Buen Camino!!
 

J F Gregory

Portugal Central - October 2019
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (March-April,2016) finished, (October 2019) Portuguese Central Route.
I have a Kindle on my smart phone, but I also use Audible and listen to ebooks.
 

K Turner

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
August-October 2019 CF
🙂 Hello :) Camino peregrinos!

I am considering purchasing an e-reader with downloaded books to read along the way but it got me thinking. I do like to read fiction for pleasure and have so little time to read now due to busy days...I miss it. Thought hey...I could get a whole lot of reading done while on my Camino. This got me thinking some more.... with fatigue settling in at the end of the walk...meal times and some socializing...will I even feel like reading...or have much time to do so. I'm an early riser so most days I should finish my daily trek early enough.

And so I ask all of you...did anyone bring an e-reader with intention to read...and...was it worthwhile? I understand my question is quite subjective based on your experience, but I find your posts on the whole quite educational while providing worthy food for thought.

Thanks in advance to all those that post 🙏 🙂
I used the Kindle app on my phone. I mostly read on rest days and during transportation.
 

Simon B

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Ingles and Camino Frances. VDLP Spring 2019
🙂 Hello :) Camino peregrinos!

I am considering purchasing an e-reader with downloaded books to read along the way but it got me thinking. I do like to read fiction for pleasure and have so little time to read now due to busy days...I miss it. Thought hey...I could get a whole lot of reading done while on my Camino. This got me thinking some more.... with fatigue settling in at the end of the walk...meal times and some socializing...will I even feel like reading...or have much time to do so. I'm an early riser so most days I should finish my daily trek early enough.

And so I ask all of you...did anyone bring an e-reader with intention to read...and...was it worthwhile? I understand my question is quite subjective based on your experience, but I find your posts on the whole quite educational while providing worthy food for thought.

Thanks in advance to all those that post 🙏 🙂
I always take my Amazon Kindle. Bit of an indulgence due to weight but I think it is well worth it. The big advantage is a long battery life so you do not to worry about having to charge up daily. Also take a smartphone for photographs, maps and all those helpful Camino apps.
 

Albertagirl

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (2015); Aragones-Frances (2016); VdlP-Sanabres (2017); Madrid-Frances-Invierno (2019)Levante
I don't take a special device for reading on camino but I certainly need some sort of device right now, as I am alone on the Madrid. I am reading at present, downloaded from my home library, a fascinating book by Yann Martel called "The high mountains Portugal." It feels like appropriate camino reading.
 

Dani7

Stop wishing, start doing.
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances
When the time is right
wow. Lots of food for thought here for me. The predominant favorite is kindle on smartphone. Then some eReaders and paper books.
 

jsalt

Jill
Camino(s) past & future
Portugués, Francés, LePuy, Rota Vicentina, Norte, Madrid, C2C, Salvador, Primitivo, Aragonés, Inglés
The predominant favorite is kindle on smartphone.
It’s the least heaviest option. If you take a separate device, and find that you “don’t have time” for reading, like many people above, then you will start to resent carrying it. If it was an old t-shirt you could just toss it, but an expensive electronic gadget . . . 😟

(P.S. we are obsessed with the weight of our packs on this forum 😃 .)
 
Camino(s) past & future
I have walked part of the Camino Frances one and a half times. I ended in Sahagun in April 2019.
🙂 Hello :) Camino peregrinos!

I am considering purchasing an e-reader with downloaded books to read along the way but it got me thinking. I do like to read fiction for pleasure and have so little time to read now due to busy days...I miss it. Thought hey...I could get a whole lot of reading done while on my Camino. This got me thinking some more.... with fatigue settling in at the end of the walk...meal times and some socializing...will I even feel like reading...or have much time to do so. I'm an early riser so most days I should finish my daily trek early enough.

And so I ask all of you...did anyone bring an e-reader with intention to read...and...was it worthwhile? I understand my question is quite subjective based on your experience, but I find your posts on the whole quite educational while providing worthy food for thought.

Thanks in advance to all those that post 🙏 🙂
Yes! My iPad (ereader) goes everywhere with me. I didn’t get a lot of reading done but it was a comfort having it with me. I had my luggage forwarded by Camino Facil so the extra weight was of no concern in my day pack.
 

Simon B

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Ingles and Camino Frances. VDLP Spring 2019
It’s the least heaviest option. If you take a separate device, and find that you “don’t have time” for reading, like many people above, then you will start to resent carrying it. If it was an old t-shirt you could just toss it, but an expensive electronic gadget . . . 😟

(P.S. we are obsessed with the weight of our packs on this forum 😃 .)
Actually I am obsessed with the weight of my backpack on the Camino!!!
 

SusanSmyth

Happy Member 😋
Camino(s) past & future
May 2017 Francés
March 2018 Inglés
June 2019 Madrid
Sorry, can't help you because I'm ALWAYS carrying "real" book anywhere I go. Even on Camino and then people staring at me like I'm from 19th Century :D :D :D

BTW, try to wipe your "behind" when out of TP with smart phone or tablet ;)
Me, too! I took along a regular book and ripped out the pages as I read them. One afternoon at a restaurant someone saw me and said, “Hey! You’re the one who rips out pages! I heard about you a couple days ago!” 😂😂
 

WalkingJane

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
May and October 2015
(2015 October)
June 2018 Portuguese
🙂 Hello :) Camino peregrinos!

I am considering purchasing an e-reader with downloaded books to read along the way but it got me thinking. I do like to read fiction for pleasure and have so little time to read now due to busy days...I miss it. Thought hey...I could get a whole lot of reading done while on my Camino. This got me thinking some more.... with fatigue settling in at the end of the walk...meal times and some socializing...will I even feel like reading...or have much time to do so. I'm an early riser so most days I should finish my daily trek early enough.

And so I ask all of you...did anyone bring an e-reader with intention to read...and...was it worthwhile? I understand my question is quite subjective based on your experience, but I find your posts on the whole quite educational while providing worthy food for thought.

Thanks in advance to all those that post 🙏 🙂
The only things I read were the guide book and an occasional newspaper I picked up along the way. This was a time when I really wanted to simply "be here now"! I did have a very brief daily "inspirational" message on my phone.
 

KinkyOne

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
I'am not perfect, but I'm always myself!!!
Me, too! I took along a regular book and ripped out the pages as I read them. One afternoon at a restaurant someone saw me and said, “Hey! You’re the one who rips out pages! I heard about you a couple days ago!” 😂😂
Oh, but I don't rip out the pages. From any kind of books, even guidebooks. It's kind of a sacrilege for me.
But I would in an urgent situation.
 

cher99840

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
2013, 2017 Camino Frances SJPP-Santiago
2015 St. Olav's Way Oslo-Trondheim
2017 VdlP Seville-Merida
Aren't you concerned that it might be stolen during the night if you nod-off while reading it?
I was concerned about my phone as I read myself to sleep, and what I’m reading falls from my hand. My Columbia Sleep Sack has a draw string near the top and I read with my head inside. (That also keeps the light of my device from disturbing others.). When it falls the phone remains within my sleep sack and sometime during the night my head comes out of the sack. Before I figured out that I could sit on the bed and pull my sleep sack on, then stand up and pull it up, I was quite a sight as I shemmied into the darn thing. It’s really not as complicated as it sounds and my phone remains secure.
 

WalkingJane

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
May and October 2015
(2015 October)
June 2018 Portuguese
Thought I answered but don't find it, so please excuse if this is repeat.
I read only my guide book and an occasional local newspaper. Really wanted to simply "be here now" and not be distracted from the Camino experience.
 

Camino Chrissy

Take one step forward...then keep on walking..
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 2015;
Norte/Primitivo 2016;
Frances 2017;
Le Puy 2018;
Portuguese/FishermanTr. 2019
Oh, but I don't rip out the pages. From any kind of books, even guidebooks. It's kind of a sacrilege for me.
But I would in an urgent situation.
I cut my LePuy guidebook in half before I left home as I was finishing in Moissac last summer. I did it carefully and perfectly with a razor blade. I now have 2 halves in case I do the remainder! I love my guidebooks!
 
Last edited:

NorthernLight

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Le Puy to Santiago via the Frances 2012-2013. EPW2015
Aragonese & Frances 2016
Burgos to Muxia 2017
I don't take a special device for reading on camino but I certainly need some sort of device right now, as I am alone on the Madrid. I am reading at present, downloaded from my home library, a fascinating book by Yann Martel called "The high mountains Portugal." It feels like appropriate camino reading.
That's an excellent read! Lingered with me long after I was done reading it. Buen camino!
 

Dani7

Stop wishing, start doing.
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances
When the time is right
I cut my LePuy guidebook in half before I left home as I was finishing in Moissac last summer. I did it carefully and perfectly with a razor blade. I now have 2 halves in case I do the remainder! I love my guidebooks!
Very resourceful :)
 

kafnorx

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2019)
Don't know much about those gadgets but usually I fall asleep while reading (after some time of course). A book is on the floor in the morning and I can easily use it again the next evening. What about e-readers, kindle's etc's??? Do they break? My smartphone screen did. ;)
Kobo is much more hardy than a phone - the screen isn't glass
 

kafnorx

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2019)
Aren't you concerned that it might be stolen during the night if you nod-off while reading it?
In a semi sleepy state, I always managed to just tuck it away into my sleeping bag or the valuables bag attached to myself! It'd be annoying if someone stole it, but less hassle than losing a phone
 

SCT

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Porto to Santiago 2014
Camino Frances 2016, 2017
Astorga to SDC 2019
I usually take a few paperbacks I can leave along the way after they are read and also my kindle. It’s worked out well for me.
 

BPG2017

Member
Camino(s) past & future
September 2017
🙂 Hello :) Camino peregrinos!

I am considering purchasing an e-reader with downloaded books to read along the way but it got me thinking. I do like to read fiction for pleasure and have so little time to read now due to busy days...I miss it. Thought hey...I could get a whole lot of reading done while on my Camino. This got me thinking some more.... with fatigue settling in at the end of the walk...meal times and some socializing...will I even feel like reading...or have much time to do so. I'm an early riser so most days I should finish my daily trek early enough.

And so I ask all of you...did anyone bring an e-reader with intention to read...and...was it worthwhile? I understand my question is quite subjective based on your experience, but I find your posts on the whole quite educational while providing worthy food for thought.

Thanks in advance to all those that post 🙏 🙂
I brought a tablet. I made it a point not to have any random books on it, because I did not want to be tempted away from the presence of the Camino. But it was invaluable to have (in order of how important they turned out to be): a historical guidebook to the areas I was going through; Brierley; the Spiritual Exercises of Ignatius de Loyola; a Bible; Merton's Seven Story Mountain; a history of European religious-military orders.

This list felt scary, heavy and overly religious even to myself - and yes, it was constricting at times - but the discipline worked well and enhanced my experience of the Camino. I encourage you to make - not the same choice, of course - but something similarly "constricting", that keeps your mind on what the Camino means to you.
 

roving_rufus

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (2013-2015) Portugues (2017-2019) Via Francigena (2018-??) Camino from Ireland (2020-??)
I bring my Kindle but on the Camino Frances in the more normal walking season I rarely used it as there were so many conversations and often newspapers or books about too. But in the winter season it was great to have with few pilgrims about when it got dark so early. Used it on the Camino Portugues in September due to heatwave - when I went for afternoon siesta (I don't nap) it was nice to lie down and read out of the blistering heat. It kept me sane walking through France on the Via Francigena where meeting another pilgrim is time for a major celebration! However I did find that I could only read "heavier", "deep", "meaningful" stuff for a certain amount - then my brain was tired and I would switch to a few "lighter" novels that I had read before if I was just filling in time.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Ingles 2016 Camino Portuguese 2017 Considering Invierno late (2020) In lieu of VdlP (2020)
You can download an E-reader app for both Apple and Android phones and tablets. There are hundreds possibly thousands of this type of App, The main issue is the source of the E-Book. If you are paying for a service for Kindle or Barnes and Noble then you are locked into their own reader because of the DRM (distributed rights management) software that is meant to protect the copyright owners material from illicit distribution. If you are obtaining your E-Books from non-DRM sources in Epub or Mobi formats then you can use generic ebook readers like "CoolReader" . A good source of Non-DRM books is project Gutenberg (www.gutenberg.org) which hosts the expired copyright books for most of the classic books ever written
 

Rod Murray

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (2016) Portuguese Coastal (Sept 2019)
🙂 Hello :) Camino peregrinos!

I am considering purchasing an e-reader with downloaded books to read along the way but it got me thinking. I do like to read fiction for pleasure and have so little time to read now due to busy days...I miss it. .....

Thanks in advance to all those that post 🙏 🙂
Tried something different on this Camino, from which I've just returned, and that was an audiobook on my iPhone. (We took our iPads last time, only phones this time). During quiet stretches of walking, my wife and I agreed to put on our audiobooks and just walk. Then we'd talk about the books we were reading. This worked really well. However, I did not do so often enough and ended up finishing the book on the flight home from Portugal.
 

Dani7

Stop wishing, start doing.
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances
When the time is right
You can download an E-reader app for both Apple and Android phones and tablets. There are hundreds possibly thousands of this type of App, The main issue is the source of the E-Book. If you are paying for a service for Kindle or Barnes and Noble then you are locked into their own reader because of the DRM (distributed rights management) software that is meant to protect the copyright owners material from illicit distribution. If you are obtaining your E-Books from non-DRM sources in Epub or Mobi formats then you can use generic ebook readers like "CoolReader" . A good source of Non-DRM books is project Gutenberg (www.gutenberg.org) which hosts the expired copyright books for most of the classic books ever written
Thanks for this this info. Much appreciated.
 
Camino(s) past & future
CF 2006,08,09,11,12(2),13(2),14,16(2),18(2) Aragones 11,12,VDLP 11,13,Lourdes 12,Malaga 16,Port 06
I never have time to read.
I much more enjoy talking to people and making new friends.
By the time I fall into bed, I'm asleep in 3 minutes.
 

KariC

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Caminho portugûes (2016)
🙂 Hello :) Camino peregrinos!

I am considering purchasing an e-reader with downloaded books to read along the way but it got me thinking. I do like to read fiction for pleasure and have so little time to read now due to busy days...I miss it. Thought hey...I could get a whole lot of reading done while on my Camino. This got me thinking some more.... with fatigue settling in at the end of the walk...meal times and some socializing...will I even feel like reading...or have much time to do so. I'm an early riser so most days I should finish my daily trek early enough.

And so I ask all of you...did anyone bring an e-reader with intention to read...and...was it worthwhile? I understand my question is quite subjective based on your experience, but I find your posts on the whole quite educational while providing worthy food for thought.

Thanks in advance to all those that post 🙏 🙂
I did. Got tons read on transatlantic flights, and of course, a kindle-ish device is lightweight and you can set the backlighting low enough so you don't disturb fellow pilgrims. Highly recommend.
 

cbacino

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino del Norte - Primitivo (2018)
Via Francigena (2017)
Appalachian Trail (2016)
🙂 Hello :) Camino peregrinos!

I am considering purchasing an e-reader with downloaded books to read along the way but it got me thinking. I do like to read fiction for pleasure and have so little time to read now due to busy days...I miss it. Thought hey...I could get a whole lot of reading done while on my Camino. This got me thinking some more.... with fatigue settling in at the end of the walk...meal times and some socializing...will I even feel like reading...or have much time to do so. I'm an early riser so most days I should finish my daily trek early enough.

And so I ask all of you...did anyone bring an e-reader with intention to read...and...was it worthwhile? I understand my question is quite subjective based on your experience, but I find your posts on the whole quite educational while providing worthy food for thought.

Thanks in advance to all those that post 🙏 🙂



🙂 Hello :) Camino peregrinos!

I am considering purchasing an e-reader with downloaded books to read along the way but it got me thinking. I do like to read fiction for pleasure and have so little time to read now due to busy days...I miss it. Thought hey...I could get a whole lot of reading done while on my Camino. This got me thinking some more.... with fatigue settling in at the end of the walk...meal times and some socializing...will I even feel like reading...or have much time to do so. I'm an early riser so most days I should finish my daily trek early enough.

And so I ask all of you...did anyone bring an e-reader with intention to read...and...was it worthwhile? I understand my question is quite subjective based on your experience, but I find your posts on the whole quite educational while providing worthy food for thought.

Thanks in advance to all those that post 🙏 🙂
If you’re bringing a phone just use that for reading. Why bring redundant stuff?
 

Micah26

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino France's (2018)
Hi Dani7,
I brought my iPhone 6s+ which was large enough for me. I had enough to carry without a separate e-reader.

I used it for a couple things. My Spanish is minimal so I downloaded tha mass in Spanish and English. Helped me to participate in mass. Secondly, I downloaded a non fiction book about Spain which I enjoyed during my trip. And I had access to several fiction books. I read while in the airport on the plane and sometimes after my walk, while at dinner or just before bed. I also watched a little netflix when I just couldn’t concentrate on reading.
I used my iPhone to e-mail my friends and family who charted my progress on a map. And I used it to listen to music. It was nice to have options especially because I walked alone and tended to be on my own.
But, have been just as comfortable not have my phone. It’s all personal preference.
Whatever decision you make will be best for you! Regardless enjoy the journey...
Buen Camino😊
 

Jackie Robinson

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
First Time this year
🙂 Hello :) Camino peregrinos!

I am considering purchasing an e-reader with downloaded books to read along the way but it got me thinking. I do like to read fiction for pleasure and have so little time to read now due to busy days...I miss it. Thought hey...I could get a whole lot of reading done while on my Camino. This got me thinking some more.... with fatigue settling in at the end of the walk...meal times and some socializing...will I even feel like reading...or have much time to do so. I'm an early riser so most days I should finish my daily trek early enough.

And so I ask all of you...did anyone bring an e-reader with intention to read...and...was it worthwhile? I understand my question is quite subjective based on your experience, but I find your posts on the whole quite educational while providing worthy food for thought.

Thanks in advance to all those that post 🙏 🙂
I took a paperback with me as I also love reading any opportunity I get and did wonder how I'd get on after I'd finished it. However, I needn't have worried as I found a reasonable supply of books in many of the albergues I stayed in along the way that had been left by those who'd gone before me. Granted, they might not have been my first choice were I back on home turf browsing my local library shelves but it certainly expanded my scope of reading :-D (A type of continuous book exchange if you like..)
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Norte and Frances Sept 6 - Oct 11, 2016
🙂 Hello :) Camino peregrinos!

I am considering purchasing an e-reader with downloaded books to read along the way but it got me thinking. I do like to read fiction for pleasure and have so little time to read now due to busy days...I miss it. Thought hey...I could get a whole lot of reading done while on my Camino. This got me thinking some more.... with fatigue settling in at the end of the walk...meal times and some socializing...will I even feel like reading...or have much time to do so. I'm an early riser so most days I should finish my daily trek early enough.

And so I ask all of you...did anyone bring an e-reader with intention to read...and...was it worthwhile? I understand my question is quite subjective based on your experience, but I find your posts on the whole quite educational while providing worthy food for thought.

Thanks in advance to all those that post 🙏 🙂
I never once had time or desire to read on the Camino. Yes one gets tired but there is so much to digest, wonderful people to meet, time for reflection and much more. I highly recommend against doing much, if any, reading. For me one of the best things about my Camino was not engaging in ANY internet communication. No email no Whatsapp and best if all no Facebook!!!! I highly recommend it. I took notes and then did a blog to share my very special and unique Camino. Can’t wait for the next one. Buen Camino!
 

Lindsay53

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances April / May 19
I am an avid reader and always take my kindle on my walks. On the Camino I enjoyed re-reading some of the Camino books I had read in preparation for the journey and comparing them to what I was seeing myself. While there was plenty of socialising, a quiet hour or two each day with my kindle was extremely pleasant.
 

TaraWalks

Peregrina without a skateboard
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances 2016 & 2018, planning for Le Puy 2019/2020ish and for some shorter Caminos stacked
I took a Kindle with me but then I need to read like I need oxygen. There was never any doubt that it was coming. I chose taking the Kindle in addition to an iPhone as the battery lasts much longer, doesn’t heat up and a Kindle is kinder on the eyes than a smart phone. Never regretted it. If you’re an introvert and a bibliophile and value your space and downtime an e-reader is a no brainer.
 

Bsimonuk

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
First time
Camino del Baztan : 10-18 September 2019
🙂 Hello :) Camino peregrinos!

I am considering purchasing an e-reader with downloaded books to read along the way but it got me thinking. I do like to read fiction for pleasure and have so little time to read now due to busy days...I miss it. Thought hey...I could get a whole lot of reading done while on my Camino. This got me thinking some more.... with fatigue settling in at the end of the walk...meal times and some socializing...will I even feel like reading...or have much time to do so. I'm an early riser so most days I should finish my daily trek early enough.

And so I ask all of you...did anyone bring an e-reader with intention to read...and...was it worthwhile? I understand my question is quite subjective based on your experience, but I find your posts on the whole quite educational while providing worthy food for thought.

Thanks in advance to all those that post 🙏 🙂
I did bring a paperback and read it a few times - although there is not enough time every day, like you I find it relaxing to read. I have a kindle and would love to bring it but not sure because of the weight?🙏🏽
 

Dani7

Stop wishing, start doing.
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances
When the time is right
I did bring a paperback and read it a few times - although there is not enough time every day, like you I find it relaxing to read. I have a kindle and would love to bring it but not sure because of the weight?🙏🏽
Me too. It’s the weight. I’ll decide once my pack is fully loaded. Still completing my pack list and the weight then will guide my decision. 👍😊
 

jsalt

Jill
Camino(s) past & future
Portugués, Francés, LePuy, Rota Vicentina, Norte, Madrid, C2C, Salvador, Primitivo, Aragonés, Inglés
Me too. It’s the weight. I’ll decide once my pack is fully loaded. Still completing my pack list and the weight then will guide my decision. 👍😊
If you start a new thread with your packing list we can pick it apart for you 😨 😃 so you can then decide what may be essential and what is definitely not.
 

Dani7

Stop wishing, start doing.
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances
When the time is right
If you start a new thread with your packing list we can pick it apart for you 😨 😃 so you can then decide what may be essential and what is definitely not.
😱
 

David Tallan

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (1989 and 2016), Portugues - from Porto (2018)
🙂 Hello :) Camino peregrinos!

I am considering purchasing an e-reader with downloaded books to read along the way but it got me thinking. I do like to read fiction for pleasure and have so little time to read now due to busy days...I miss it. Thought hey...I could get a whole lot of reading done while on my Camino. This got me thinking some more.... with fatigue settling in at the end of the walk...meal times and some socializing...will I even feel like reading...or have much time to do so. I'm an early riser so most days I should finish my daily trek early enough.

And so I ask all of you...did anyone bring an e-reader with intention to read...and...was it worthwhile? I understand my question is quite subjective based on your experience, but I find your posts on the whole quite educational while providing worthy food for thought.

Thanks in advance to all those that post 🙏 🙂
I read on my phone. When I was walking the Camino Frances with my son in 2016, I didn't read much for the first part of the Camino until my wife reminded me that it didn't matter where in the world I was, I could still borrow ebooks from my local public library. Then I read somewhat more.

I still didn't read as much as I usually do at home, but when fatigue sets in at the end of a long walk, some light fiction reading lying in the albergue bunk can be relaxing - much more relaxing than going over guidebooks and planning the upcoming days.
 

Dani7

Stop wishing, start doing.
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances
When the time is right
I read on my phone. When I was walking the Camino Frances with my son in 2016, I didn't read much for the first part of the Camino until my wife reminded me that it didn't matter where in the world I was, I could still borrow ebooks from my local public library. Then I read somewhat more.

I still didn't read as much as I usually do at home, but when fatigue sets in at the end of a long walk, some light fiction reading lying in the albergue bunk can be relaxing - much more relaxing than going over guidebooks and planning the upcoming days.
That’s my thinking exactly. Relaxing. Letting go...a bit of quiet time.
 

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