Backpacking: How We Packed

When we were planning our trip we decided we didn't want to worry about leaving anything at hostels. So... we decided to buy daypacks and carry everything with us every day! Maybe that sounds crazy, but it actually worked out really well for us. There was never a time where we needed more space, we tried to keep it as simple as possible. 


Emma (24L bag):
Clothing:
  • 2 pairs of lululemon leggings
  • 1 pair of lululemon shorts
  • 1 lululemon dress
  • 2 lululemon tops (1 upf tank & 1 tee)
  • 3 camis
  • 1 fleece
  • 1 lululemon upf long sleeve
  • 2 sports bras 
  • 3 underwear
  • 3 socks 
  • 1 pair of flip flops
  • 1 pair of running shoes 
  • 1 hat
  • 1 scarf
  • 1 buff 
  • 1 rain coat
  • 1 rain pants 
  • 1 pj set (cami and shorts)
Toiletries: (2 shampoo/bodywash, 1 conditioner, 1 face wash, foldable tooth brush, tooth paste, comb, face/body cream, floss, sunscreen, face sunscreen, lip chap) + Trial size make up (mascara, eye shadow and bb cream) for emergencies?! + mini washing detergents (tide sells a pack of 3 for sink washes or fill a little travel bottle with detergent). First aid kit and extra band aids

Technology:
  • Selfie stick
  • Travel adaptor for Europe with usb 
  • Portable charger bank
  • iPad
Extras:
  • Sunglasses (plus contacts and glasses)
  • Sleeping bag and pillow case
  • Lightweight quick dry towel
  • Multi cutlery spoon (fork, spoon and knife in one)
  • Travel wallet waist band


Chris (32L bag):
Clothes:
  • 2 pairs of lululemon pants 
  • 1 pair of lululemon shorts
  • 3 tees
  • 1 fleece
  • 1 lululemon upf long sleeve
  • 3 underwear
  • 3 socks 
  • 1 pair of sandals
  • 1 pair of running shoes 
  • 1 hat
  • 1 buff
  • 1 rain coat
  • 1 rain pants 
  • 1 pjs (loose boxer shorts)


Toiletries: (2 shampoo, 2 body wash, hair wax, foldable tooth brush, tooth paste, sunscreen, face sunscreen, lip chap). First aid kit and extra band aids.

Extras:
  • Sunglasses 
  • Sleeping bag and pillow case
  • Lightweight quick dry towel
  • Multi cutlery spoon (fork, spoon and knife in one)
  • Travel wallet

The backpacks we got were used for the Camino as well as the Europe trip after. We had them fit etc for us at an adventure store (Mec, Sail, Atmosphere etc). The brand is Osprey and we love them! They have a rain cover in the bottom and also fit water bags, which we used on the Camino. Chris bought a slightly bigger bag than me, mostly because men's clothing is bigger and bulkier!

The sleeping bags clipped on the bottom of the backpacks. We bought a lightweight sleeping bag good for weather as low as 10C. Could have bought the mummy sheets instead, it wasn't that cold. Though we used the sleeping bag as a pillow on the train!

For clothing, I bought everything black. It doesn't show the dirt and no one knows if I wore the same thing every day because it's all black! You would really have to pay attention to realize what's what. Chris had mostly black and grey, again it didn't show dirt on it. Also, darks wash a bit easier? Don't have to worry about the colours running into each other. 

The layers of clothing we brought we perfect! Good for all conditions. If it was really cold, I could wear two pairs of leggings, a cami, a tank, a long sleeve and a fleece and a coat, on a hot day I had shorts or a dress. 

After the Camino we shipped our hiking shoes, extra socks, and water bag home. Though we could have just worn hiking boots the whole trip instead of running shoes. Maybe would have been a bit dorky looking but functional as they are more waterproof. Also, the splash pants we bought for the Camino but ended up using in Croatia so it was good to have them. We would have been very wet without them. 

I found having a scarf is pretty multi purpose, especially when you're cold! As well, having a buff is great. We bought them for the Camino. The ones we got had this cooling technology making it feel better when it was really hot as well it has upf protecting our necks. Chris was able to pull the buff up over the back of his head, shielding his whole neck from the sun or when it rained he turned it into a headband. 

After we sent the water bags home we bought disposable water bottles and just kept refilling them. More convenient for our backpacking portion but would have been annoying for the Camino as you are drinking water so often. 

In terms of packing, because I bought everything black, I couldn't tell anything apart, so I packed in freezer ziplock bags. I labeled the outside of the bags, and could squish the air out of the bags so they took up less space. Then I had a big ziplock bag that I put all the clothes in. I found that it really helped me organize! Chris however didn't like my method of packing and just used one bag for all his clothes. Both worked well, I know I couldn't have done that as I would have ripped my bag apart every time I needed something!

Why did we pack like this? Well we knew it was a short trip and we could get away with it, but also, we didn't want to worry about leaving our things in hostels! We carried all our stuff with us so there was never any worry about things. If we needed extra clothing we always had it. We didn't have to pack a day bag every day. It made things very simple!

I chose to go make up free for the month. I did take some with me in case I needed it for mini emergencies, but for the most part I avoided it and it took up hardly any space in the bottom of my bag! Also I only took a comb to brush my hair because hair brushes take up lots of space. I first thought it would be a nightmare every time I washed my hair but it was actually fine! I got used to it! In terms of drying my hair, if you ask the reception, almost everywhere had a hair dryer you can borrow!


If you're wondering what we packed differently for the Camino. We had a 32L foldable bag that could hold anything we didn't want to walk with during the day and there was someone who took it from hotel to hotel. We probably could have managed without it but it was arranged. We had liner socks as well as Mariano wool hiking socks. Definitely recommend doing both. It really helps reduce blisters. We had the water bags with the hose that sits on your shoulder for easy hydration. Hiking boots. We had running shoes, sandals and hiking boots. I liked having all three because you could alternate. I would wear my running shoes sometimes if the hiking boots were rubbing me anywhere just to give my feet a break. Plus at the end of the day it's nice to have something else to put on. Chris ended up wearing all three shoes to walk in to help with blisters. Yes - he wore socks and sandals to walk the Camino in!! I only brought flip flops so I didn't have that option but my running shoes were Nike frees and they are pretty comfy anyways!

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