What NOT To Bring In The Backpac: 10 Things To Leave At Home
When setting off a long-term trip for the first time, it’s common for people to bring far more than they need; the uncertainty of what the trip may bring can lead to a mentality of packing things “just in case”, or for comfort.
I remember my first 2-week trip to Thailand, hundreds of full moons back; my backpack looked like the one to the right and embarrassingly I even brought socks for that expected cold night in the tropics. Ahem!
To help you towards the way of traveling light, guest writer Steve James – also guilty as charged for over-packing on his first round the world trip – offers a subjective and irreverent look at ten common backpacking items which in his opinion should stay in the wardrobe:
1. A Huge Backpack to rival the SAS/Navy Seals
Take a stroll down the Khao San Road and you’ll see wave after wave of fresh recruits arriving from overseas kitted out like Special Forces, tottering under the weight of bulging 70-80 liter capacity backpacks. Don’t do it to yourself! You really shouldn’t need a backpack bigger than 50 liters. Any more and you need to seriously reconsider the items you’re packing. Are they really necessary?
It seems like a natural choice to throw a pair or two of jeans in your bag, but denim is not suited for life on the road by any means. Jeans are thick (making you hot in balmy climates), heavy and take an age to dry. You’re far better off with a pair of trousers/pants made from a lighter, quicker-drying fabric.
3. Sleeping Bag
As this is no longer the 1970s, virtually all hostels worldwide will provide you with adequate bedding for free. There is absolutely no need to bring a sleeping bag on your trip unless you are doing an awful lot of camping. Instead, consider bringing a cotton (or silk, if your budget stretches that far) sleep sheet, which will take up hardly any room at all in your pack and will be useful to separate you from the odd festering mattress you may have to lay your head on.
4. Hiking Boots
Unless you are walking around the world, leave the hiking boots at home. Big, clumpy and stinking, a pair of boots weighing down your bag will quickly become irksome, particularly when you’re in a sandals climate. You’re far better off hiring boots when you fancy doing some serious hiking, although a pair of sturdy trainers/sneakers will often suffice for “accessible” walks.
Increasingly in dorm rooms worldwide there will be one or more travelers busily tapping away on their laptops. A laptop is a luxury item, and certainly not an essential item for backpacking, unless you require one for working en-route, so think seriously before bringing one on your trip. What might seem like a great idea at home may not be so genius on the road when it is stolen or broken.
6. SLR Camera
Hand-in-hand with a laptop on my list of no-nos is an SLR camera. You’d have to be seriously committed… to photography to bring an SLR. Heavy, bulky (especially if you bring along a selection of lenses) and prone to breaking or being pinched by shifty travelers, swallow your artistic pride and bring a crap point’n'shoot digital camera like the rest of us.
7. Enough Medical Supplies To Make Florence Nightingale Blush
One for the hypochondriacs. A compact, basic first aid kit is essential to bring with you, such as plasters, a small tube of anti-septic cream and so on. But don’t go overboard. Unless you are really going way off the beaten track, leave the sterile syringes at home and put your money into comprehensive emergency travel insurance instead.
8. A Pacsafe
Don’t know what a Pacsafe is? Good – keep it like that. Suffice to say, it is something your Mum would think would be a good idea. It’s not.
9. Mosquito Net
Mosquito bites are intensely annoying, and need to be taken seriously, as a little nip can be deadly if the blighter is a carrier of malaria. However, there are effective ways of protecting yourself without resorting to carting a mosquito net around (such as using anti-malarials, covering up at dawn/dusk and using DEET or natural repellents). Nets take up far too much space in your pack, and are not needed in most of the world. For the areas in which you may appreciate having one, such as particularly infested parts of Africa, pick one up locally if they are not supplied at your accommodation.
Because there is a common consensus that people who travel with guitars are wankers.
It is located 61 km from Medellin. The geography of the area, the tradition of its farmers and national and international recognition of the produc...
It is recognized throughout the country for the image of Mr. Fallen, located in the cathedral, to which dozens of miracles attributed to him. To this ...
Near Medellin, just 41 km, travelers arrive there in search of the flower farms, religious sites and landscapes, among other attractions. This is a ty...
Chakri Day 6 April, to commemorate the founding of the Chakri Dynasty 1782nd The Royal Pantheon on the site of the Temple of the Emerald Buddha is onl...
Magha Puja: important religious ceremony at the time of the full moon inthird lunar month - usually in February. It is reminiscent of the meeting of 1...
On the list of cities where you can eat the best, Bangkok is so high. Even in normal middle-class hotels praise signs offering Thai, French, Chinese a...
Denmark has no mountains, not counting two additional overseas constituent countries - the Faroe Islands in the North Atlantic and Greenland in North ...
At 36,125 square kilometres (13,948 sq mi), Guinea-Bissau is larger in size than Taiwan, Belgium, or the U.S. state of Maryland. This small, tropical ...
Palace of Versailles was originally a simple hunting lodge located in a village of the plain of the Paris region. Palace building itself did not begin...
When it was built in 1889, no one imagined that over more than a hundred years there will be painting, photography or representative to the Paris with...
Page 1 of 22 1 2 3 4 5 ...LAST >>