Heading out into the great unknown is one of the best experiences of your life, but what do you pack to go backpacking? The best rule is to travel light. Not only will you pick up enough gorgeous things to fill your backpack (twice) along the way but you’ll soon quickly discover dragging your life in a bag across a sweaty travellers trail is just not fun. From experience, you can cope in most places with just a few basics. Here are a few personal favourites.
There’s a couple of important points here. One, you may come across plenty of beachside knockoffs but only a genuine pair can provide your eyes with vital UV protection while you’re catching some rays. Second, looking slick in that all-important beach selfie will make you the envy of your mates stuck back at home. Go classic with a pair of Ray Ban sunglasses and they won’t let you down.
Plug adapter kit
So, yes generally don’t travel with a lot of stuff but at a minimum you’ll probably have a phone, a camera and maybe a hairdryer. Pack your own universal plug pack and be sure you’ll always have access to a powerpoint. I mean really, that beach selfie in your funky new Ray-Bans isn’t going to take itself!
So you’re all ready to set out on your intrepid journey but the first barrier you’ll probably hit is definitely language! Carry a notebook and pen in your bag, then get a friendly local to write the name of your destination in the local language or with its common nickname. It’s so much easier than waving your guidebook at a taxidriver and hoping for the best.
Bit of a controversial one this one but great advice for the ladies. Depending on where you’re jetting off to you might get some attention exploring the streets as an exotic foreign beauty. Pack a cheap wedding ring and slip it on if you feel you’re getting a bit more attention than you would like. Makes awkward conversations much shorter!
Basic medical kit
There’s no need to go overboard on these as you can pick plenty of the essentials up wherever you’re going – yes, there will be pharmacies there too! That said, it’s really useful to have a few painkillers, antiseptic wipes, bite cream and plasters on hand to quickly deal with any minor emergencies. Obviously sunscreen should already be on your priority list but some chamomile lotion to sort out that time you feel asleep on the beach might also be worth the space in the bag.
There’s lots of other things you might not be able to go without but less in your pack is definitely more. In fact, a great pair of sunglasses, a good hat, high factor suncream and a great book will get you through most days. Now get out there and have fun. . . . .