The Bare Necessities: What I wouldn’t travel without

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Somedays I just want to strip back and simplify the way I travel. Being a blogger doesn’t make that the easiest of tasks (requiring constant internet connection and a device to blog on), but for at least a few trips in the New Year I’m pledging to go tech free and strip back to the bare necessities. One of the best short worded sentences I have ever read in this tech age is that “in order to connect, one must disconnect”. No truer words. So to strip back and connect (be that with the land, the people, your travel partner or just yourself), here’s how to strip back to the bare necessities…

the bare necessities

How to Travel with the Bare Necessities

Time Keeper

While a phone offers everything these days (torch, compass and least of all a clock), a great idea is to ditch the phone for a short holiday and take time to yourself. Whilst I love the idea of losing track of time, with flights to catch and shows to see, you’d really be kidding yourself not to keep track of time somehow. If you’re looking for a simple-but-sophisticated teller of time with a gorgeous little anchor to signify adventure, I purchased my watch from Kapten & Son.

Photo Taker

While the best memories are those you capture with your own eyes, its important to have something to look back on for years to come, which is why I always always always have my camera handy – nearly always on my neck, shoulder or in my backpack. I use an Olympus OMD 5 Mark II with a range of lenses – my favourite being a wide angle and fisheye for something different. Though for instant photo love, I use a Fujifilm Instax.


One thing I have never stopped doing throughout my travels is keeping a journal. Some days that just means a few dot points of things I’d like to remember and some days I’m feeling philosophical, thus leading the way to a 10-page diary style entry. Mine (pictured) is by Graphic Image and its my third from them – they’re such good quality and their travel journals even have maps from popular cities.


Call me old school, but I still love to arrive in a city with an old city map passed on by a friend or a set of instructions scribbled on a napkin or yellow stick-it-note to guide me on my way to my hotel that evening. A map is always a good companion and these days you can get some great fun maps curated to your liking (i.e. they might show the best coffee shops around a city).

Essential Essentials

Then of course you can’t go far without a passport, relevant travel papers, travel insurance, a plane ticket (one way return is the most exciting) and a willingness to open your heart and mind to whatever it is you are exposed to along the way.

Packing Less is More

In terms of clothes, I can finally say that after years of overpacking I have finally managed to master the art of carry-on luggage for trips of up to two weeks. The only lesson: less is more. Whatever you don’t have when you get there you can always buy on arrival. Thin clothes are also great – like blouses, cotton t shirts and shorts, etc. The only time this becomes difficult is winter – to which my answer is to always wear your coat, heavy jeans and boots on the plane with your light changeable clothes (undies, socks, tops and a spare pare of trousers) in the carry-on case!


Over to you! What are your tips for packing less and do you agree with going back to basics!?

Brooke Saward

Brooke founded World of Wanderlust as a place to share inspiration from her travels and to inspire others to see our world. She now divides her time between adventures abroad and adventures in the kitchen!

December 27, 2015




    Beatrice - Mademoiselle Nomad

    March 3, 2016

    Would NOT be able to travel without my phone. I don’t really carry travel journals as they are bulky, but seems like a good idea, especially as a blogger, we all need something to jot down notes, ideas and whatever inspiring quote we may overhear 🙂 Great post.



    January 19, 2016

    Best advice I ever read re packing lightly (alas, not my mental-creation; the author is somewhere out there on the internet!) was to pack for ONE DAY only. Mind you, this is a day where you do everything from surfing in the morning, to sitting at a cafe, to hiking up a mountain, to going out to dinner and a show. Mix up the clothes, take only one of anything you can only where one of at a time and won’t get smelly (ie. one hat, one pair of shoes, one belt) and invest in quick dry materials, so you can wash and dry overnight, therefore only needing two of that which may get smelly. Really, if you can live with what you’ve packed carry-on for a week, then it is sufficient to live with for two weeks, two months, two years even, with no more than that. Happy light travels!



    January 6, 2016

    Great post + tips!



    December 29, 2015

    Important tips! A journal is really necessary 🙂



    December 29, 2015

    Agree with everything you say here! I would add in to make sure that the clothing you take works for multiple outfits. Taking light weight clothing is awesome, but make sure that items can be mixed and matched. If all your tops go with the bottoms then its possible to cut out a good handful of clothing items.



    December 29, 2015

    I have always a notebook with me! But I am an overpacker, can’t help it 🙂


    Ada Diaz

    December 29, 2015

    I like the idea of the journal. I’m going to try bringing it along with me to jot thoughts and ideas down. 🙂



    December 29, 2015

    I always bring a journal too! You never know what you might think of when wandering around a city of when you’re bored on a train…



    December 29, 2015

    You’re right, it takes some experience to learn, but packing light does have great benefits <3




    December 29, 2015

    And as for what I never forget to bring on a trip – a book or my kindle! I need to do something on the plane and while sitting at a cafe, right? It’s nice that when I think of a certain book that I read on vacation, I always recall that place as well.



    December 29, 2015

    I need to get better at packing, I am still a serial overpacker! Great tips!



    December 28, 2015

    I really need to keep a travel journal. I’m sure there are many memories and observations from our vacations that I’ve already forgotten! I’m just not sure if I’d actually write in it each night. However, even a list of what we did that day would be helpful.



    December 28, 2015

    Totaly agree with you and the journal is the must for me, I’m a control freek and I like to keep all of my memories in it haha


    Clipping path Jobs

    December 28, 2015

    This is more essential for travel.


    Annika Ziehen

    December 28, 2015

    I love the idea but have you successfully tried a trip without your phone? I think that would be my absolute hardest (and maybe that’s why I should try it!). Maps are the best. I actually like cheap little hotel maps that you can scribble on and take home – almost a diary in itself.


    Rachael @ Catch Me if You Can

    December 28, 2015

    That compass is beautiful! I love having a paper map, you never know if your tech is going to fritz out so having a back up is vital.



    December 28, 2015

    I agree that less is sometimes better but I am also trying to avoid to much unneccessary buying – so I try to oack the way No further shopping is needed (unless I really want to shop)



    December 28, 2015

    I totally agree that the more I travel the less I pack I’ve honed it down to a few comfort items that make me feel luxurious no matter where I am and everything else is just the bare clothes that I can get away with. I also have to make sure I save space to bring home a few new things!



    December 28, 2015

    Loved this. A journal is certainly an essential for me – terrible memory!

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