So you’re going backpacking? What an adventure! Preparing for my first RTW trip, there were a few things I wish I had known before I left, and they might not be what you expect…
- ‘Pack it Cubes’. You need these in your backpack!! These are a luxury item but I know they are worth every penny! Living out of a backpack can take its toll; packing and unpacking every few days, messy hostels and long train rides! It can be annoying when all you want to do is find a pair of socks and you have to unpack your whole bag . With pack it cubes everything is organised and you lose a lot less! It also saves on space and enables you to be more efficient in your packing.
- Always have two purses/ wallets. Its horrible to image and talk about, but travellers get mugged or have items stollen from their bags. Its part of travelling. If you have two purses, chances are you wont be left penniless, it’s also good practice to split your money up.
- Its worth carrying around a sarong! These can be used for so many things! A blanket, a curtain for your dorm bed, a beach towel, a pillow, a jacket, a cover for visiting temples. So Many uses! They can be brought really cheap and are so useful! My travel guru friend @heelsinbackpack (heelsinmybackpack.com) talks about how great sarongs are, check out the link!
- Location! Always choose location over facilities when it comes to accommodation. When you are travelling you spend such little time in your accommodation, you can deal without wifi when you are in the centre of the action!
- Keep a journal! Even if you just write one sentence ‘this is what we did today…’ . It is a great memory! You think that you will remember everything but sadly you don’t and this is a great memory for 5 years down the line. There are a few trips that I didn’t keep a journal for and I really regret it now.
- Appreciate everyday! Some days travelling is hard. Exhaustion, no money, no ‘home’, these things can take there toll. But it is so important to appreciate everyday. When you are back at home, behind that desk you will remember each day with fondness and you will wonder why you were even sad. You’re travelling the world! Breathe it in, soak it up! Appreciate it!
- Make friends! Life is about the people you meet! Its great to have travel memories and years from now when your at a dinner party, or sat at work someone will say “I’m going to India” and you will have stories bursting out the seams. But people make the stories. Having friends all over the world will keep your travel stories alive and it will leave the door open for more to happen….
- Do something that scares you everyday. It’s true what they say, you should do something everyday that scares you because thats what makes us grow. Thats why travel changes us and develops our character, because its scary! It stretches you and pushes you beyond your comfort zone, but that is where the adventures lies and the stories are waiting….
- Read books! Travel provides such a great opportunity to read! We lead such busy lives, rarely do we get a whole day to waste away on a beach reading, or spending 40 hours on a train. Read books you would never dream of reading. Read books that you swap with others, read books that remind you of place you’ve been. IT will change you.
Anything else that you can add? I would love to hear it :)