What I Packed for My Trip to Anywhere

With no concrete plan for this trip, I had to pack for just about any situation in as few items as possible. I think I definitely got a little bit carried away here, but so far, I’m very pleased with what I’ve brought and everything has come in handy.

In this post…

Clothing

I packed more clothes than I had anticipated that I would, but they’ve all come in handy! I watched a bunch of videos on military rolling techniques. which helps me keep my clothes packed in tight and also makes it easy for me to rifle through without destroying the organization.

  • Packing cube 1:
    • Tops
      • 4 tank tops (2 casual, 2 athletic with built-in sports bra, 1 slightly more dressy)
      • 1 technical T-shirt
      • 1 lightweight linen T-shirt acquired in Thailand
      • 1 lightweight thermal long sleeve from Uniqlo
    • Bottoms
      • 4 pairs of shorts (1 jersey, 1 hiking, 1 spandex, 1 high-waisted denim)
      • 3 pairs of pants (1 Ever Brand high-waisted legging, 1 super thin lightweight knee-length legging, 1 pair of super thin harem-style pants acquired in Croatia)
        • A bit about my Ever Brand leggings – they have POCKETS! These are advertised as wearable for 5 days without washing. I wore them on and off for 3 days throughout Bogotá and they held up pretty well! No stench. I worry about bacteria, though, so I washed them as soon as I got the chance. So far, I love them!
  • Packing cube 2:
  • Packing cube 3:
    • Socks (in small lingerie bag)
      • Hiking socks (1 pair REI, 2 pair from Amazon)
      • Regular socks for wearing with my Nikes
    • Underwear (in smaller packing cube)
      • 7 pairs of the thinnest, smallest quick-dry pairs that I had in my possession
      • 2 pairs of Thinx – they aren’t super lightweight, but I love them for the first couple of days of my period.
    • Bras/bralettes (in a smaller packing cube)
      • 3 Sports bras
      • 1 bralette
  • Shoes
    • Waterproof hiking boots
    • Crocs sandals – not what you typically think of when you think “Crocs”; comfy, waterproof, great grip for wet surfaces, and cute!
    • Old Navy flip flops
    • Hiking sandals
    • Nike Flexes – small and lightweight, good for casual city trekking when I need a break from my boots

Miscellaneous

  • Passport, copies of passport
  • International Driver’s Permit (issued by AAA)
  • Yellow Fever vaccination card
  • MacBook
  • Portable charger
  • Kindle
  • Deck of cards
  • Laundry detergent (powder-form to keep airport-regulated liquid quantities minimal)
  • Toiletries
    • 3oz bottle of Olaplex (this shampoo is allegedly good for any hair type and lathers really well, so a little goes a long way)
    • 3oz bottle of conditioner
    • 3oz bottle of body wash
    • 3oz bottle of sunscreen
    • Sunscreen stick for face – this stuff is thick, sturdy, and does not mess around!
    • Toothbrush, toothpaste, floss
    • Tea tree oil wand – tea tree oil is great not just for minimizing zits and fading scars, it’s great for zapping bug bites!
  • Medicine
    • Allergy pills
    • Ibuprofen
    • Melatonin (for sleep)
    • Charcoal pills – though the research on these is still a bit murky, I swear by these for a number of things:
      • absorbing gas/easing an upset stomach
      • easy minimalist face masks
      • occasional teeth whitening
    • Sudafed
    • Tiffy (from Thailand) – I have no idea how these work or what the long-term side effects are, but I know that they zap my headaches and cold symptoms at the turn of a dime. I use them in times of desperation.
    • Malaria pills
    • Altitude sickness pills
    • Anti-diarrhea pills (just in case my charcoal pills fail me)

What I Wear on Planes/Buses

Strategically planned out to alleviate space in/the weight of my bags for airline check-in, but I also get cold easily.

  • Colombia hiking pants – I found these on sale. If I could go back, I’d try harder to look for convertible pants.
  • Loose-fitting cotton long sleeve
  • Thin Colombia water-resistant jacket
  • Mountain Hardware lightweight puff jacket

Items That I Swear By

  • Outdoor Element Firebiner – a multi-tool carabiner. I’ve used the blade many times in a pinch and the carabiner was very useful for clipping my bathing suit to my backpack to dry for hiking after swimming. It has:
    • Fire starter wheel
    • Small utility blade
    • Bottle opener
    • Screw driver tip
  • Hydrapak Stash – Collapsing Water Bottle – excellent for traveling. Saves space when going through airport security and makes it convenient to switch to and from hiking in the jungle with your CamelBak water reservoir to expanding your Hydrapak water bottle in the city.
  • Cotopaxi Luzon Backpack – I always bring this backpack while traveling. On the (mostly) off-chance that I’m able to fit everything into my larger pack, this backpack folds down into a tiny, ultra packable square. (Use my referral link to get $20 off. ). Some of my favorite features:
    • Super lightweight
    • Made from durable, repurposed nylon
    • Water pouch for my Camelbak bladder
    • Breathable straps, a chest buckle, hip belt (albeit, not the most comfortable straps/belts, but they function well enough for the weight)
  • A T-Mobile phone/data plan – international texting and data!

Our Essential Travel Apps

I don’t have all of these downloaded on my phone, but between my boyfriend and me, we’ve got all of the bases covered.

  • Planning/Navigating
    • Trips – a crowdsourced Lonely Planet where anyone can write posts about places they’ve gone and visited. This is useful for getting different perspectives or how-tos on places you’re thinking of visiting.
    • TripAdvisor – for finding vetted activities and places to eat/drink/play/stay
    • Google Maps – use the Google search function to find blogs/articles on the places you want to visit. Google will start to suggest other high-quality, related content as you go!
    • Google Maps – be sure to download the map of the area you’re going to!
    • Maps.Me – where Google Maps fails with offline walking directions, Maps.Me succeeds
  • Finding Accommodations
  • Miscellaneous
    • Overdrive – if you have a library card, you can borrow e-books from your local library(ies) and load them to your phone/Kindle!
    • WiFi Maps – a crowdsourced listing of available WiFi networks and their passwords.
    • Google Translate

Did I pack too much? What am I missing?

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