While an increasing number of albergues offer the option of a machine washer, you will at least occasionally need to wash some clothing by hand. Most albergues have large sinks for laundry, sometimes with a bumpy scrubbing board that you can press clothes against to agitate.

First, fill the sink with warm water and add some detergent. Put your dirty clothes in and knead them against each other like kneading bread. If there is a scrubbing board, rub each item vigorously against the board. Next, drain the sink and refill with clean water. Agitate clothing again. Repeat until no more soap suds emerges.

Wring out each item thoroughly and place on the line to dry. Some albergues supply clothespins but its a good idea to have a few of your own or to use safety pins. Be sure to take your clothing off as soon as they have dried to make room for others’ items; Also be careful to only take off your own clothes and not to to accidentally take any items that resemble your clothes but belong to someone else.

In persistent wet and cool weather clothes may have difficulty drying, and you’ll be thankful for the industrial washer/dryer machines in many albegues. Consider sharing a full load with other pilgrims to save money and resources.