my european packing essentials & basic list



friends, i love packing. 

i have been researching, thinking about & making lists about what to pack for our trip for weeks now. it's been a balance of packing light but also having the essentials for change in weather (switzerland evenings versus the coast of italy) & occasions (hiking trails throughout the swiss alps & date nights in paris). 

today i want to share some of my essentials for our trip along with my packing list!


- a good book, my journal & dslr camera: these three things are essential to a quality trip for me. i have to have a good book to read while flying & this one is already a page-turner. i also need to have a journal for writing & stashing paper ephemera, such as ticket stubs & museum handouts. my dear friends at little mountain bindery gifted luke & i a custom fillion for our trip. i am already in love with this worn leather beauty & have begun to fill the pages. also, my camera is a must. my photos are my favorite souvenirs of all. 

- refillable water bottle: the expense of drinking water while traveling can really add up so i plan to fill up my water bottle before going out & about to save money & stay well hydrated. 

- canvas bag: i folded up a canvas bag & put it in my larger bag for carrying market purchases & picnic treats around the cities.


- outdoor backpack: all of the walking mixed with cobblestone streets makes it nearly impossible to bring along a rolling suitcase in europe so we opted for nice backpacking backpacks. we were fitted at a local hiking store, but the sticker price left us a bit shocked. after extensive research, we opted for gently used backpacks found on ebay. 

- purse with leather strap: after doing some research, i opted for a cross-body bag with a well-made leather strap to prevent pickpocketing. i love my better life bag & consider it the perfect bag for such a trip as this!


- layers: layers are key for travel & i plan to bring two of my luxury hoodies from evy's tree. they match everything & they're cute enough to wear out & about (as shown in the picture below). if i get warm, i'll just tie it around my waist & keep on movin'!

- adapters & selfie stick: outlet adapters are a must for traveling abroad. also, we splurged & purchased a selfie stick for our trip because we knew we'd love the fun selfies!


following the basic principles of the capsule wardrobe over the last few seasons made it easy for me to pack clothing essentials for our trip. we opted for apartments & cottages over hotel rooms for our trip so we have laundry facilities at every location, which means i don't have to bring too much! 
here's my list of what i packed:

tops: two gray v-necks, gray long sleeve shirt, lace tank, graphic tee, graphic tank
bottoms: one pair of jeans, black lounge capris, yellow shorts, black leggings
dresses/skirts: little black dress, indigo maxi, black lace dress
shoes: birkenstock sandals, saltwater sandals, fancy sandals
other: two hoodies, swimsuit, outer jacket, light scarf

what are some packing essentials you bring along for your adventures?
love,
natalie

9 comments:

Traci said...

A good book and camera are essential. I should start bringing a journal on my travels, though!

Anonymous said...

Have a fabulous time on your trip! A point: the water bottle idea is a very good one. Just beware: tap water quality varies from city to city/country to country. I sometimes will go to a discount grocery store (i.e. Lidl or Aldi) and pick up a 2L bottle of water and keep it in the hotel room to refill the water bottle. Sounds like a bit of a palaver, but the little money and time spent doing so can help prevent you and your hubby from any possible water-born tummy bugs.

Also: are you sure you want to travel without a pair of tennis/walking shoes? You'll be doing lots of walking, remember!
I love your blog! Looking forward to your updates. Enjoy your holiday! :)

Ali @ Anything You Want said...

I also LOVE packing - making lists and planning for a trip is one of the best parts of travel! I always travel with layers because as a tourist you're outside a lot and weather can change quickly. Also comfy shoes (and band aids in case those shoes aren't as comfy as you thought!) are essential.

Alia Osburn said...

I love your better life bag and also that Evy's Street hoodie! So cute.

Anonymous said...

I was hoping you'd post your packing list! I am such a dork that way that I want to know. :)

My family is also taking a long trip in a few days. We started packing today. A friend of mine gave me the advice to lay out everything on the bed and try to come up with a color palette. I think I'm going to be very happy with it.

Anonymous said...

I would add some good walking shoes. My husband and I went to Italy for our 10th anniversary and the streets are very uneven at times. I wore good leather shoes that slipped on, and had a good grippy sole. They went from walking to nicer slacks just fine. I brought heels for nights out.

Also, tap water can cause trouble for travelers, especially if covering a lot of ground.

We found that if it was chilly the street gypsies would come around to sell scarves, if it's raining they would sell umbrellas and so on. Maybe tuck in a cheap plastic poncho, they're around $3 at Walmart and are the size of a pack of cards.

Ali Grace Eiland said...

I love all your pretty colors!!
P.S. Your jewelry is super cute. Where did you get those necklaces??

Jenna said...

So excited for your adventure, and I can't wait to read along as you guys travel. One tidbit that I REALLY wish I would have known before my husband & I recently ventured to Europe for the first time: European washing machines / dryers are NOT the same as here!! We did apartment rentals rather than hotel rooms as well, and our experience was that the machines are combination washer/dryer machines, and a) they take forEVER (at least 3 hours for a cycle), and b) the drying portion is a steam process, so the clothes hardly ever get fully dry (you can maaaaybe get socks and undergarments to dry, but for jeans or other heavier clothes? forgetaboutit!). I would *highly* recommend stashing a clothesline of some sort in your bag, as you'll have much better success air drying laundry than running multiple cycles of the steam dry!

Just a heads up, because I WISH I would have known before we left. :) Enjoy your amazing adventure!!!

Anonymous said...

Just to pitch in from Europe- I would definitely bring pair of proper walking shoes, the climate will change quite a bit between Italy and Switzerland. As for comment from Jenna about washing machine/drier being one appliance, I never heard of that. We have them separate and the drier actually dries completely if you choose so. There are different settings on it and perhaps That was the problem that Jenna encountered. That said, if the drier is not available (as I doubt it will be in rental appartments) there will be drying rack.
Have a great time!

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