Jeremy and I have learned two things in all our years of experience backpacking through hot places: one, our hair NEVER looks good in the jungle; and two, there are several essential pieces of travel gear that help you enjoy your awesome trip instead of spending the whole time trying to figure out how to get sand un-stuck from your sweaty legs (spoiler alert: it’s impossible). This post isn’t meant to be a packing list, so we’re not going to tell you how many t-shirts or pairs of underwear to pack; we trust you to figure that out for yourself. But we are going to tell you EXACTLY what items have proven themselves to be indispensable, whether you’re hostel hopping in South or Central America or island hopping in Southeast Asia. Here’s what you’ll find in this post:
Living in California makes us antsy for winter. We crave snow and cold weather and yearn for hot mulled cider and a crackling fire, and we love frolicking in the snow just as much as some folks love laying on a beach. But since we have to travel to find real winter weather, we’ve learned to pack carefully to prepare our coastal, California bodies for the cold! In this post we’re laying out all of our favorite, field-tested essentials for winter travel, from gear to clothing.
As resident Californians, other than watching nostalgic Christmas movies and inhaling peppermint bark the only way we can get a real (read: cold and snowy) Christmas is to travel! So for the past few years, we’ve been escaping to Europe in the winter seeking snow, cold, short days, and warm comfort food. After just a few trips, the idea of Christmas without Christmas Markets just feels empty, meaningless, and devoid of calories. The one problem with our Christmas in Europe habit is that it’s … er, not exactly cheap. So, we strap on our packs, book some hostels, and go backpacking! In this post we’re laying out all of our favorite, field-tested essentials for backpacking Europe in the winter, from gear to clothing. Here’s everything you need to stay warm, healthy, and happy on your trip, so you can spend less time stressing and more time drinking glühwein and stuffing your face with lebkuchen. Mmmm….
Not all shoes are up for the challenges of travel. After field-testing like crazy, I’ve found FOUR excellent pairs of travel shoes for men. Yes, four. Sure, it may sound extra, but let’s be real – you’re not winning any dude-awards wearing your Reef flip flops hiking or to a four-star restaurant, my guy. These shoes are each lightweight enough to pack easily, yet sturdy enough to handle absolutely anything – and I’ve put them through the ringer just to make sure. With these four shoes, I’m able to handle snow, rain, high-altitude hiking, cobblestones, mud, sand and everything in between. I don’t think twice about what shoes to pack for trips – I just stuff these into my pack and go, knowing I’m covered no matter what adventure I’m up against. They’ve changed my travel game entirely – and they can change yours, too!
It took me years to find the perfect combination of women’s travel shoes. Every trip I would stare dubiously at my suitcase, trying to figure out how the heck I was going to cram in the number of shoes I needed to achieve the various activities I wanted to do – you know, adventurous things like walking without hobbling in pain or hiking without hobbling in pain – while also trying to maintain a basic level of not-hideous-ness. But today, that’s all changed. After trying on, returning, trying on again, and field-testing like crazy, I’ve found FOUR absolutely amazing pairs of travel shoes for women. They’re all lightweight and easy to cram into your luggage without taking up a ton of room – AND legit cute, too! With these four shoes, I’m able to cover all of my bases and not think twice about what shoes to pack for trips. It’s changed my travel game, and I’m about to change yours, too!
As a travel blogger, I do a lot of flying. It’s part of the gig. Except unlike my old corporate job, I don’t have the luxury of a corporate card, priority anything, or any other amenities. Every time I fly, I’m stuck back in economy with all the rest of the plebes, silently praying to the almighty flight gods that my legs don’t go to sleep before I do. And honestly, there’s no way to sugarcoat it: long haul flights suck. They just do. Fact. Unfortunately, they’re also a fact of my job … and my life. Whether it’s a 24 trip to Bali or a 46 hour haul to Italy (truly the worst series of terrible layovers of my life) I’ve learned a few survival tips to help make the inevitably miserable journey a little bit less awful. And I’m here to pass along all of my wisdom! Here are some of the tips and tricks I’ve learned in my years of flying to help survive long-haul flights (or short ones, whatever. I hate all flights equally, tbh).