Packing List

When I started planning this trip, and realized that I would have to deal with temperatures that could top 100 (Cambodia in August) or dip below freezing (Iceland at the end of September), I started looking at packing lists in travel blogs to see what other people suggested. I found them super helpful, so I’m publishing this packing list in case anyone else finds it useful. I’m sure I overpacked, because my suitcase is heavy, but I’m planning to ship a package home from Hong Kong with most of my warm-weather clothes and shoes, so that should help. (Part of the weight also comes from the clothes I’m bringing to the friend I’m staying with in Cambodia, because Amazon Prime doesn’t exactly deliver to her apartment.) I thought about trying to do the carryon-only backpacking style of trip, but for the reasons I mentioned in an earlier post, I decided to bring a few more things and just check the bag.



  • 1 pair sneakers
  • 1 pair walking sandals
  • 1 pair plastic flip-flops
  • 1 pair silver sandals
  • 1 pair black flats
  • 1 pair black booties

Six pairs of shoes is a lot, I admit, and the silver sandals and black flats didn’t necessarily need to come, but it’s going to rain for part of each day in many of the places I’m going, and I hate going to dinner in soaking wet and muddy shoes. I’m going to send the silver sandals back from Hong Kong, because once I’m in Europe it should be cool enough in the evenings that flats won’t give me blisters. The black booties are waterproof, and I’m planning on wearing them when it’s rainy and cold in England and Scotland. Plastic flip-flops are a necessity for hostel showers, and I’m going to be doing so much walking I want to be able to switch between sandals and sneakers if one is bothering my feet.


Coats/Cold Weather Gear

  • 1 packable down jacket
  • 1 rain coat
  • 1 lightweight jacket (water resistant on the outside, fleece on the inside)
  • 1 fleece hat
  • 1 pair fleece gloves
  • 1 pashmina-style scarf

So the key here is layering. I looked like an idiot wearing three coats on top of each other in my oven of an apartment in July, but I confirmed that if I wear the down coat, then the jacket, then the raincoat, a) it all fits, b) I can still move my arms, and c) it’s warm. I also am bringing a few merino sweaters, and with all that put together, plus a hat and gloves and the hood on my raincoat up, I should be comfortable in Iceland. I hope. The jacket and the pashmina scarf come in my carryon, because I get cold on planes, and everything else rolls and squishes into a medium-small packing cube. The down jacket is one of those ultra-lightweight down jackets from Uniqlo, which is only $70, packs to the size of a fist, and is water resistant.



  • 6 t-shirts
  • 4 long sleeve shirts
  • 4 wide-strapped tank tops
  • 2 spaghetti strap tank tops
  • 3 merino tops (1 ultra-lightweight base layer, 2 sweaters)
  • 2 lightweight cardigans
  • 1 button-down shirt
  • 2 pairs jeans
  • 1 pair quick-dry travel pants
  • 2 knee-length skirts
  • 1 dress
  • 2 bathing suits

For working out/hiking

  • 1 wicking t-shirt
  • 1 wicking button shirt
  • 1 pair athletic leggings
  • 1 pair athletic shorts
  • 1 pair yoga pants
  • 1 pair hiking socks


  • Pajamas
  • 12 pair underwear
  • 6 pair socks
  • 1 pair leggings
  • 1 pair tights

The indulgences here are the second pair of jeans and the second sweater. But it all fit in, under the weight limit, and I know I’m going to be so sick of everything else by the time I get to the UK/Iceland that I will be happy to have different clothes for the colder weather. I’m planning to do most of my laundry in the sink, and only use a washing machine every 10 days or two weeks for stuff that either doesn’t fit in a sink or won’t easily air dry. I found this awesome clothesline at REI that fits in a pouch smaller than my thumb but stretches out to be pretty long, and I have a little bottle of Dr. Bronners and a rubber sink plug.



  • DSLR camera
  • Laptop
  • iPad mini (for reading e-book guidebooks)
  • iPhone
  • Mini power bank (for recharging the phone in the middle of the day)
  • Converter plug with USB ports
  • Noise-cancelling headphones



  • Very thin cable, for locking my suitcase to the rack on overnight ferries/trains
  • Packable towels (1 full-size, 1 hand towel), so I don’t have to pay towel fees at hostels
  • Swiss Army knife
  • Safety pins
  • Paperclips, for switching SIM cards
  • Bug spray and sunscreen
  • Makeup and jewelry
  • Journal
  • Headlamp, for finding stuff in my bag at hostels
  • Hats
  • Medicine and tissues. I always seem to get a cold when I travel.
  • Portable humidifier. (It’s only about 3x3x6, and weighs about half a pound. It takes any regular disposable plastic bottle of water. I often get colds when I travel, and if the air is too dry, I wake up every 15 or 20 minutes because I’m so thirsty.)


I hope this was helpful!