What to pack?
You’ve just booked your first walking or trekking adventure – YAY. Now the big question. What to pack for a walking holiday? We know packing isn’t everyone’s favourite thing to do. It’s easy to throw in the first thing that comes to mind. But, for a walking holiday, it pays to pack more sensibly. You want to find the right balance between comfort and practicality. There are so many advantages to bringing a small carry-on suitcase. You’ll avoid busy ques and baggage fees, not have to worry about lost luggage, and you can explore your new destination freely when you arrive without being dragged down by heavy luggage.
If travelling with just a carry-on isn’t your thing, don’t worry, they are still many ways to pack light and cut your baggage size down. These tips will help you pack light. Once you learn how to pack smarter and lighter, your life of adventure becomes so much easier.
It all starts with luggage. The best way to avoid overpacking is to get a small bag or carry-on case. Most carry-on bag sizes are around 22 inches and weigh under 10 pounds, or you could choose a rucksack with a capacity of around 40 liters. Suitcases are great for resort holidays where you’re staying in one place, whereas a rucksack is way more versatile for backpacking trips or walking holidays that involve lots of travelling. Whichever suitcase or bag you choose, make sure it has enough compartments to keep you organised. And of course, check your airlines’ weight/size requirements before buying your luggage.
A day pack
You will likely need a day backpack for a walking holiday. If your main luggage is staying at your accommodation or if you have bag transfers included to your next destination, a small 30L backpack is ideal for carrying your snacks, water bottle, map, and phone. Always look for bags that have side compartments so that you can easily reach for your water bottle when you need it.
Travel pillows are ideal for adding comfort to your journey – and they attach to your backpack so you don’t need to compromise on weight.
Read more on ‘The Best Rucksacks for Day Trips’
The great thing about a walking holiday in summer is the clothing should be quick-dry lightweight materials that are super easy to pack. Wool and heavyweight fleeces keep you warm, but they also tend to be both bulky and heavy. Look for fabrics that include silk and synthetics such as nylon and polyester. Remember a jacket can add a lot of bulk to your suitcase, but there are plenty of lightweight options. Our packaway jackets and fleeces are super popular for walking holidays since you can peel them on and off as much as you like – and pac a macs take up virtually no space. Keep your layers light – you can always add more if and when you need them.
Shoes are essential for your walking holiday, so don’t compromise – take your best walking shoes or hiking boots that you know will see you through. Our top tip is to make sure they are multi-functional – wear them when you’re travelling – it’s a great way to get familiar with them. And it will save plenty of space in your suitcase.
Some people can’t hike without walking poles – and rightly so, they’re great for balance and stability. It’s important to remember that most airlines don’t allow them in cabin luggage, so you would have to check them in with your luggage. We have a great range of collapsible trekking poles that are super lightweight and easily pack away into your rucksack.
The lightest option is to pack none and buy them when you arrive. If you like to travel with your own toiletries then use travel-sized bottles and take only what you need.
Tips on Packing Light
1. It’s all about the must-haves, not nice -to-haves!
Layout all your gear and think about your trip – do you absolutely need everything? Eliminate anything you don’t need. And, remember there are shops all over the world. If you forget something, you can always buy it there.
2. Pack multi-functional items
Pack only items that you can mix and match with everything else that you’ve packed. If an item doesn’t work with any other outfits, leave it behind. Gilets and walking leggings are great for adding to multiple different outfits and you can wear them while travelling.
3. Invest in Merino Wool Socks
If you’re an adventurer, you should have already invested in some merino wool base layers. Merino wool costs a bit more, but it provides warmth when it’s cold and keeps you cool when it’s hot. Why are merino wool walking socks great for travelling? They dry much faster than cotton. So you can pack just a couple of pairs for your entire trip. They can last for days before getting stinky, and if you do need to wash them, they’ll dry super quickly.