Tropical Travel Essentials

I am off to Bali in a week and I have already started the packing process. I always like to pack well in advance for holidays. I know it seems a bit excessive, but I have in the past, suffered from ‘last minute packing stress’ – which I am sure many of you out there can relate to. You know, when left to the last minute, we have a mini anxiety attack, throwing every single piece of clothing and shoes that we own into a suitcase, aggressively trying to zip it up (usually whilst sitting on it) and then collapsing into a heap on the floor after dealing with the physical struggle. Then you realise that you’re only allowed 24 kilos on the flight, so you attempt to weigh your suitcase (which seems to weigh like an elephant anyway) on your bathroom scales, praying that you don’t have to open that darned suitcase again.

That moment of craziness only hits us once we arrive at our destination, when we open up our suitcase and realise that we packed 5 white singlets (which all look the same), a pair of Ugg boots, despite the fact we’re holidaying in Thailand, not enough undies, and as always, realising that our toothbrush and iPhone charger are still at home.

You know what I’ve learnt? Only pack the essentials. Sounds easier than it looks, but when it comes to tropical holidaying, you really don’t need a lot of ‘stuff’. I’ve put together a few tips that I’ve found has helped me enormously when I’ve travelled.

1. Put together a re-useable wardrobe.
Pack pieces that can be easily dressed up or down, that could be worn during the day and during the night and also together. When you pack your suitcase and you look at your wardrobe try and match the colours and prints. A printed maxi dress could be worn during the day by the pool, but can also be jazzed up for night with some jewellery, heels and a little clutch bag. Another tip – pack clothing that doesn’t need much maintenance. For example, linen crushes really easily, so make sure you have access to an iron or laundry facilities at your hotel if you are going to pack clothing that needs TLC.

2. Never fill your suitcase.
Always leave some room when you’re departing on your trip – you are going to find some amazing pieces, accessories and jewlery on your travels. As I mentioned before, always consider the baggage limit. You don’t want to be hit with that sneaky fee, if your suitcase tips the scales by a couple of kilos. Unfortunately in my experience airlines don’t budge, if you’re over, you’re over – even by a kilo or so!

3. Have a spare bag handy.
In the front pocket of your suitcase, always pack a really lightweight expandable bag that could pass as ‘carry on’ luggage. This tip (taught to me by my mum) is really great for those out there that would classify themselves as a bit of a shopaholic. If you go a little crazy on the souvenir shopping on your travels, then you do have an extra bag to pop all your purchases in, without going over your baggage limit.

4. Think tight when it comes to toiletries.
When I say ‘tight’ – I mean it in two ways, be limited with what you put in your beauty case and also how you pack your products. Be realistic about what you need. Is it essential to bring your volumising 2 litre hairspray can and every single foundation that you own under the sun? Probably not. I find when I am on holiday, I wear less makeup and care less about my hair – I usually want to give it a once over with some shine spray. Also, pack travel size – toothpaste, shampoos, conditioners, not only it is a legal requirement with your carry on luggage now, but you can chuck toiletries away at the end of your trip, instead of lugging them back home. Finally, in your beauty case, line it with a plastic bag, to avoid spillage and leakage (which has happened to me on numerous occasions).

5. Make copies of everything.
This tip isn’t particularly about ‘packing’ as such, but still is super important. Make sure you photocopy your passport, drivers licence consulate and hotel information at least twice. Keep a copy in your suitcase and keep a copy in your handbag. Whilst you are overseas, utilise the safe in your room and lock away all valuables. There is nothing worse then having your passport stolen, so having multiple copies in reach is always good – just in case you find yourself in a spot of bother.

As I mentioned before I have already started packing. Inspired by luxury, the tropics and everything ‘islandy’ These are my top travel essentials that I’ll be taking along with me to Bali next week.

My 'Bali Basics'

Starting from the bottom left:

My Sportsgirl tortoiseshell ‘cat style’ (of course!) sunnies.

My beautiful leather travel journal that was given to me by my godfather, so I can write my thoughts, ideas and inspirations whilst I am away.

My favourite hair product right now, the Kevin Murphy repairing shine mist, which actually has flecks of of gold in it. Not only does it give my hair protection from the elements, but adds a gorgeous no fuss shine.

My ‘Imperialis’ face moisturiser by my all time favourite beauty brand Lush to keep my skin hydrated on the plane, on the beach and in the tropics.

My favourite nail polish right now by Sportsgirl and so on trend – the whitest of white! The best thing about this polish, is that it is scented! In the name of the Balinese paradise, appropriately scented too – coconut! Delicious!

Finally, my splurge purchase. My brand new Camilla ‘Jaguar Multi String’ Bikini.. So beautiful!

So there you have it – packing 101 and my personal picks. I will definitely be doing a few posts from the beautiful island of Bali. It’s a colourful, exciting and dazzling place to visit. I can’t wait to get over there and explore. So keep your eye on my Bali posts giving you some fashion, beauty and travel and accommodation inspiration.

In the meantime, start dreaming about your next adventure and live a little!

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1 Comment

  • Reply Hannah Rankine February 11, 2014 at 12:18 am

    I absolutely love that bikini! I’m normally all about plain swimwear but I’m taken by this one!
    Great post as always Sophiekins. X

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