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Washing clothes


Camino = Empathy + Compassion.
Camino(s) past & future
some and then more. see my signature.
For hand washing, will the Alberques have soap? If not, what should I bring?

Thanks, Jim

Hi and welcome here.
Take the time to browse through this wonderful forum. In the right uppercorner you have a searchfunction. You can type in " soap " and a list of other threads will appear.

I just took an all in one soap ( body, shampoo and clothes washing ).

Indeed I did not see that much albergues with handsoap.

Ultreia and happy prepping.!


Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
SJPDP LosArcos 09\14 Tricastella SDDC 0515 Porto SDDC 1015 LosArcos Burgos 1016 Burgos Leon 0917
Alburges generally don't have soap or towels as one would find in hotels. I just used a good quality shower gel in travel size. This did body hair (I don't have much) and clothes. If it's mild enough for hair I second it was mild enough for anything.


Perambulating & Curious. Rep stravaiging offender
Camino(s) past & future
I´ve got Camino plans until 2042,
- or till I fall flat on my face, whichever comes first !!
Albergues do not have handsoap because it tends to be used for - clothes washing or the shower.
I have have seen a full hand soap dispenser (1,25 liters) been emptied in 2,5 hrs, one pilgrim even filled up his own bottle with it!
many mini markets on the way have midget bottles of shampoo or shower gel.
Last edited:
Camino(s) past & future
Too many caminos to list in the permitted 100 characters!!
Take a tiny container of hair/hand wash gel with you.
Use it for all washing.
Rub it into your clothes, and take them into the shower with you for a good washing.
Remember - the swinging botafumeiro in SdC cathedral was allegedly used to take away the smell of the pilgrims!
Blessings, and happy walking .....


Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
A few times, but soon again I hope....
Just buy an extra bar of soap first chance you get on the Camino. No type of specialty soap is necessary to wash your clothes. Just make sure when you hand wash them it's on days when it's sunny enough for them to dry. Otherwise they may still be damp the next morning.
Camino(s) past & future
For hand washing, will the Alberques have soap? If not, what should I bring?

Thanks, Jim
I'm carrying bar soap in a Shower Buddy, (theshowerbuddy.com). Plan on using it for all soap needs. When my existing bar gets small from bathing or washing clothes, I'll just purchase a new bar, add it to The Shower Buddy, and keep on going. No need to carry multiple soaps. One bar can do all.
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (2017); Finisterre (2018)
I started with Dr Bronners but it made my hair feel funky so in Pamplona I purchased some shampoo and used it for everything. I put it in a ziplock just in case it dribbled. I’m planning on doing the same thing when I return on Easter -
Camino(s) past & future
May 2017 Francés
March 2018 Inglés
(May 2019) Baztan
I started with Dr Bronners but it made my hair feel funky so in Pamplona I purchased some shampoo and used it for everything. I put it in a ziplock just in case it dribbled. I’m planning on doing the same thing when I return on Easter -
That’s what I did. My all-in-one soap/shampoo/laundry product was disgusting so I ditched it. I used a tiny bottle of Johnson’s Baby Shampoo for everything, even my clothes. Worked fine.


"True Pilgrim"
Camino(s) past & future
100 characters or fewer : see signature details
I'm not sure where you'll be starting, but if it's in France, you should try and get hold of a block of savon de marseilles -- the real stuff, not imitation, nor the more industrial variety designed for home laundry use only.

Should look like this : http://david-kyriakidis.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/05/savon-de-marseille.jpg ; and you should look for it at 2-4 EUR, not tourist prices

It's a combination laundry soap, skin soap, and shampoo all-in-one -- one soap will easily last for your whole Camino -- if you can find a lavender variety, which will be violet rather than green, that'd be great
I am a fan of Dr Bonners soap (almond) for body and laundry. It doesn't work well on my hair, so I had a shampoo bar from Lush that I used instead. My advice is whatever you pick, try it out at home and see how you like it if you want to use the same soap for hair or body. For laundry, pretty much any soap will do a decent job. And of course, you can buy soap along the way if you need to.

But yeah, don't count on alberques to have any of that stuff. If they do, then be pleasantly surprised. For 5-10 euro/night, everything at alberques is pretty much DIY.
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances, May-June (2017)
Ingles-Finisterre (2018)
Agree with jmcarp, good old Ivory Soap, 99 & 44/100% pure...or so they said. Worked for me.
Camino(s) past & future
Frances starting SJPdP Sept/Oct 2015, April/May 2017
I start out with a small block of soap cut off a larger block that I have dried out before leaving home. No point in carry any water that isn’t needed. It is in a mesh bag so I can dry it out each afternoon/evening. I use it for showering and clothes washing. I also carry a small amount of shampoo that I have dehydrated as have not as yet found any soap type product that works well on my hair. One pea sized ball of dehydrated shampoo instantly rehydrated in the palm of my hand works just fine. When my soap has been used there are lots of wonderful natural soaps available in Spain, especially in the small tiendas. I buy a bar, cut off what I need and leave the remainder for another pilgrim.
Camino(s) past & future
C. Francés (2004-), C. Portugués, C. de Madrid, 1/2 V. Plata, 1/8 Levante, hospitalera Grado 2016.
Since there usually are three of us, all of us with three t-shirts etc each, there's a lot of laundry every two days. I have found a washing powder in small envelopes (Biotex) that cleans everything just by soaking - because rubbing all those socks by hand gets boring quite fast. I just put everything in the largest sink/bucket I can find, swish the water and the washing powder around until it dissolves, and soak everything for a few minutes.

And then I call for my son, who has larger and stronger hands than mine, to help with the rinsing and wringing...
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