Vocabulary for Travelers
Language Resources

Vocabulary for Adventurous Travelers

Spain is a country full of culture and beautiful landscapes, and it is also a “manageable” size. Travelers can visit places as different from each other as Malaga and Santiago de Compostela in as little as a few days, so you can imagine the amount of adventure seekers, backpackers, pilgrims, wanderers… who come here. And traveling without guides or packaged trips, improvising instead, is a great way to see the country. But, if you do choose this way to travel, there’s some vocabulary that could really come in handy. For example…

- Saco de dormir (sleeping bag): As you know, you can slip into this sack when you sleep at modest hostels or even out in the open air (sleeping out in the great outdoors, beneath Spanish starlit skies is a beautiful experience).

- Botiquín (first-aid kit): Spain has good health services, ok, but don’t forget to bring everything you might need in an emergency like band-aids, rubbing alcohol, hydrogen peroxide… with you on your trip.

- Mochila (backpack): The bag you wear on your back, of various sizes (sometimes they’re very small, and sometimes they’re enormous) and where you’ll put all of the things that you’ll take with you on your trip.

- Linterna­ (flashlight): Whether handheld, or the kind you wear on your forehead, this tool is indispensible, especially when walking down dimly lit streets in some of Spain’s old towns.

- Navaja multiusos (multi-tool pocket knife): This tool can get you out of a lot of jams. We’re not saying that you’re going to get into situations only a MacGyver could work his way out of, but it’s never a bad idea to have a tool to help you cut a little bread or cheese, or to open a bottle of wine…

- Cayado (walking stick/crook): If you’ve walked the Camino de Santiago you’ll know that this is a long, thick stick that can really help you get through long walks, carrying a heavy pack.

- Mapa (map): …We’re talking about the paper one that people have used forever. It’s all well and good to bring a GPS and other technologies along… but what if the battery dies? Paper doesn’t use any energy, you can fold it until it fits in your pocket… and it’ll never have to be recalibrated!

- Brújula (compass): We don’t want to think the worst, but we accept that at times we can be a little absentminded and that it’s possible lose our bearings. Now, in all seriousness, it’s never a bad idea to bring a brújula along, just in case. You can find very small ones that don’t take up any space at all and are easy to carry with you, even in your shirt pocket.

These are the essentials if you want to make your trip through Spain an experience full of discovery. Let’s get travelling!