Find the lightest and most comfortable backpack. It should ideally weigh 10% of your body weight, or an average of 7-8kg (15-18lbs) and the best option is a 40 litre rucksack. WHAT NOT TO BRING: get rid of all books (except your Via Francigena guide) and don’t take ‘extras’, Tuscany has many shops if you need to replace something.
WHAT TO BRING: Take the minimum when it comes to clothes. If you can, limit yourself to:
- 2 sets of underwear
- 2 tops (lightweight quick-drying blouses/shirts)
- 2 pairs of socks
- 1 pair of pants
- 1 pair of shorts
- 1 pair of hiking shoes
- a shirt and pants for the night (it is necessary if you'll sleep in hostels)
- a hat
- a fleece for cool evenings or days.
- a basic first aid kit: consider that along the Via Francigena is easy to find pharmacies. Thus, you can bring a very basic first aid kit.
- a head flashlight (that let you keep your hands free)
- a swiss army knife
- A water canteen (1 liter or two half-liter). The best thing is to hook them to the belt to them comfortable. There are also hydration packs that encourage you to drink more and drink consistently without removing it from the backpack.
- A rain poncho: choose a models with the front opening. A poncho is particularly useful both for yourself and your backpack, they are comfortable when you wear them, and when the intensity of the rain decrease, it can be opened to avoid sweating.
- mosquito repellent
- Marseille soap, toothpaste, toothbrush, deodorant
- pilgrim passport
The hat and the sunscreen are very important, sunstroke is painful and can be dangerous. For the hat, take one that protects against the sun and rain. If you take one made out of cotton, in summer you can soak it in water from time to time to keep your head cool.
The Pilgrim passport is a personal document that hikers on the Via Francigena fill out during their journey as a souvenir of the road they have travelled. By presenting this document to participating parish churches and municipalities, pilgrims can receive special stamps on their passport.