Packing Essentials Part III

Packing Essentials Part III

This little silk pouch packs up pretty small, is lightweight and will keep you cool in the summer and warm in the winter.  This is great if you’re stuck in accommodation that’s a bit cheap or dirty...you can also put it inside a rented sleeping bag or under a dusty blanket and mine is silky soft to the touch, which lets you drift comfortably off to sleep...

Stylish but Sturdy - Sandals for the Road

Stylish but Sturdy - Sandals for the Road

I'm the kind of traveller who likes explore. Don't get me wrong, I like beach time as much as the next girl but I'm also happy to spend weeks on the road in capital cities, pounding the sidewalk, walking kilometres each day – it's the best way to see a metropolis. I also like to be active – exploring trails, taking boats out to sea, and climbing up high places to enjoy a view. So the sandals I wear have got to be both comfortable and tough...

Packing Essentials - Part II

Packing Essentials - Part II

I’ve been carrying one of these since I was 21 and set off for Latin America, and I can’t tell you how many times I’ve delved into it over the years - not just for myself but for others!  Especially in rural area of developing countries, you have to carry certain essentials - included in mine is aspirin, broad-spectrum antibiotics, anti-diarrhoea meds, antiseptic wipes and hypodermic needles (sealed).  A real must-take... 

My Trusty Swiss Army Knife

My Trusty Swiss Army Knife

On my 21st birthday, and two weeks before my six-month trip to Latin America, my best friend gave me a Swiss Army Knife. Over twenty years later, I still have it and I'm not exaggerating when I tell you it's probably the greatest present I've ever been given.  This is a knife that's accompanied me through the Guatemalan jungle, the Namibian desert, across India (on three occasions) and criss-crossing a few Indonesian islands...

Packing Essentials Part I

Packing Essentials Part I

I'm asked again and again how I pack for a long trip. There's no easy answer – a lot depends on you personally, not to mention where you're going and for how long you're going. But over the years, there are five things I've learned never to leave home without:

Magilite Flashlight – When the electricity in your guest house conks out, don't assume the management is going to be able to fix it immediately...

Choosing a Backpack

Choosing a Backpack

If you're planning on travelling for more than a couple of weeks, as a backpacker, then buying a pack that suits you and your specific travel needs is a critical decision. A well-made, sturdy backpack isn't going to be cheap but – and I can't emphasise this enough – it's going to be money well spent. When you invest in a decent piece of gear, it's going to be like a great friendship – it will hold up in good times and bad, and it won't disintegrate after the odd run-in...