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Packing List for Europe in the Fall: South Tyrol, Italy

Your Complete Packing List for Europe in the Fall

Europe Travel Planning

After almost a year and a half of full-time travel, packing up our backpacks for multi-month adventures is starting to feel normal.

We have hit our stride with packing at this point–we know what we need, and what we can leave behind. If you’re a regular reader, you’ll likely notice some similarities between this post and our Ultimate Packing List for Central America & Mexico–we are still carrying many of the same things.

However, backpacking Europe in the fall while balancing a full-time work schedule on the road is a bit different than backpacking Central America without any time constraints, and our packing list for Europe reflects not only the different environment and culture, but our shifting priorities as well.

One thing is certain: we are still not, and likely never will be, very minimalist packers–while we try to keep things reasonable, we like to make sure we have the things we need and want while on the road.

If you’re headed to Europe in the fall, here’s hoping that this list helps you get started on your packing!

long term travel is cheaper than you think

Packing List for Europe in the Fall:

Actual Luggage:

Our sturdy North Face Jester Backpack has been downgraded after almost a decade of hard use–we still have it, but it’s looking a little worse for the wear these days.

We updated to a swanky Swiss Gear backpack for our daypack, which has several different pockets including a laptop sleeve, and offers a little more protection to our laptops and camera gear while in transit (one of these days, we’ll start carrying an actual camera bag).

Many thanks to my dad for gifting us this new bag!

Our original backpacks that we bought for our 2015 trip to Europe are still holding up perfectly–other than one tiny tear in Jeremy’s bag, these things still practically look brand new! We recommend them both highly.

We hadn’t racked up tons of travel experience when we bought these bags, and as a result, we bought ones that are a little too big–we’d probably each go down 5-10 liters in space if we were buying new ones today, but the difference isn’t enough to justify buying new bags when ours have held up so well!

  • Medium Sized Zip Purse

This purse is a few years old and reasonably beat up at this point, but as I only carry it on travel days, it doesn’t bug me at all. Most importantly, it zips and can be carried across my body.

Packing List for Europe in the Fall: Dubrovnik, Croatia

Camera Gear:

Virtually all of the photos we take for the blog and social media these days come from our Nikon D3300–our little starter DSLR has served us so well. We have learned so much on this camera, and we thoroughly recommend it to anyone looking to get into manual shooting for the first time.

At a price point of around $450 for the camera body and kit lens (or a little more if you go for the recently released and updated D3400), you really can’t beat it!

These days, we shoot all of our photos in RAW and edit them in Lightroom.

 

 

 

 

Our original tripod got stolen off the top of a chicken bus in Nicaragua, and we took the opportunity to replace it with a taller one: it’s definitely worth the small amount of extra weight and space, at least to us!

The key to good selfies of the two of us, especially in natural/not crowded areas: at less than $10.00, it’s a bargain.

 

As you can see, we’re big believers in carrying extras of tiny, light, and thoroughly useful things (like battery chargers and lens caps): we’ve experienced one too many headaches trying to find replacements for specific things on the road to be bothered about a little extra space and weight.

It’s a simple truth of long term backpacking: things will get lost, and things will break. Better to be prepared than wind up visiting five different camera stores in Chiapas trying to find a camera charger, only to end up paying more than double the Amazon price for one…

Travel Items Packing List

Miscellaneous Travel Gear:

We’ve been carrying these water bottles since high school, replacing them every couple of years as needed. They hold up incredibly well, are easy to clean, and are perfect for traveling!

If you’re not sure these are the right option, check out other travel water bottle options on the market–don’t resort to disposable ones if you can avoid it!

For hiking: no need to bring this if you’re sticking to cities!

Whistles are incredibly inexpensive, incredibly small, and incredibly light. There’s no reason to go hiking without one.

For a shorter trip to Europe in the fall, these probably wouldn’t be necessary–but we’re hoping to log some beach time in southern Europe before the weather turns cold, and want to be prepared.

We love this bag! It rolls up very small, it’s incredibly light, and it holds up to 50 pounds! This is regularly our grocery bag and beach bag, along with whatever else we need.

If you’re traveling carry-on only, leave this at home. If you’re checking a bag, though, we highly recommend bringing one. Slicing fruit and cheese on the go, opening wine bottles, and having a small pair of scissors handy all in one small package make this a very useful gadget on the road!

  • Dive Log Books

Just in case we decide to go diving.

Money belts are somewhat controversial, but they work for us: Jeremy wears it and it is completely invisible on him.

We don’t pull every little thing out of it, but simply put our “emergency” things in there (like passports and backup credit cards), and carry the cash we need for the day in a wallet like normal.

If I were traveling alone as a solo female traveler, I’d probably skip the money belt and check out something like these cute scarves–especially for a fall trip to Europe!

Skip spiral notebooks: they will scratch everything in your bag. Composition is definitely the way to go.

  • Pens x4
  • Pocket Sized Pack of Tissues
  • Extra Ziploc Bags
  • Reusable Laundry Bag

 

 

This is a recent addition to our packing list for Europe: now that Jeremy carries a MacBook Pro for work instead of us both carrying durable and inexpensive Chromebooks, we decided it was time to update security a little bit.

Simply secure this safe to the strongest thing in your hotel room–the base of the toilet or a pipe under the sink, for example, and everything inside will be reasonably secure.

We are big fans of these phones: they are less expensive than iPhones but have very similar specs, are all unlocked, charge incredibly quickly (a full day’s charge in half an hour!), have decent cameras, and hold two SIM cards at the same time–a bonus for travelers who often bounce back and forth to different destinations.

The OnePlus 5 recently came out, and we would pick those up if we were shopping for cell phones today.

  • Copies of Passports (on Dropbox & hard copy)
  • Actual Passports

Packing List for Europe in the Fall: Miramar Castle, Trieste, Italy

Portable Pharmacy:

I have been obsessed with these since wearing them on my day trip to Cape Lookout! No more drugging myself into a stupor with Dramamine every time I so much as look at a boat–these Sea Bands are the perfect cure for my motion sickness.

I cannot wait to finally take some sailing excursions!

  • Excedrin Migraine
  • Ibuprofen
  • Allergy Medication
  • Hydrocortisone Cream
  • Antibiotic Ointment
  • Bug Spray
  • Sunscreen

How to Book a Trip: Travel Resources

Female Packing List for Europe in the Fall:

Kate’s Clothes:

  • Dresses x 6 (2 maxi, 4 short)

Clearly, I love wearing dresses: if you’re more of a pants-and-shirt type, you’ll probably want to swap some of these dresses for more tops (or just skip them entirely if you’re a lighter packer than us).

  • Jeans x 2
  • Tights x 2
  • Skirts x 2 (1 maxi, 1 short)
  • Shorts x 1

 

  • Short Sleeve Shirts x 3
  • Tank Tops x 5
  • Cardigans x 3
  • Pullover x 1
  • Jackets x 2
  • Long Sleeve Shirt x 1
  • Sweaters x 3

 

  • Work Out Pants x 2
  • Work Out Shorts x 1
  • Work Out Shirts x 2
  • Sports Bras x 2

 

  • Bikinis x 3
  • Sunglasses x 1

 

  • Underwear x 14
  • Socks x 6
  • Bras x 2

 

  • Boat Shoes x 1

Comfortable walking shoes (that are ideally also at least semi-fashionable!) are a must when traveling.

  • Flip Flops x 1
  • Hiking Boots x 1

The hiking boots aren’t completely necessary, but after a year and a half of not buying or packing any on trips due to the conventional wisdom that they’re not needed, we’re really tired of not having them! We have some hiking planned in Europe this fall and cannot wait to have boots along for the ride.

As for daily shoes: my boat shoes are fairly beat up and toward the end of their life, so my plan is to wear them for our first few destinations, and then toss them and get a nice pair of daily wear boots once the weather (and my wardrobe) starts feeling more like fall.

We carry two of these: one holds medicine, the other holds my jewelry.

  • Engagement & Wedding Rings

I haven’t worn my engagement and wedding rings during long term travel before, so I’m excited to keep them with me in Europe this fall!

How to Book a Trip: Travel Resources

Kate’s Toiletries:

  • Toothbrush (with plastic case for head)
  • Toothpaste
  • Floss
  • Retainers & Case

 

We love this shampoo: it’s compact and light to carry, and it lasts forever! It is available cheaper in Lush stores than online, so if you have one near you, you may want to pick some up in person!

  • Conditioner
  • Razors
  • Shaving Cream

 

  • Contacts
  • Contact Solution
  • Contact Case
  • Glasses

 

I’ve been using this kit to do my eyebrows since high school, when a technician botched them just in time for senior prom. It is extremely easy to use, even on the road–all you need is a microwave! Each kit lasts me about six months, and I hope they never stop making them.

Travel is hard on my skin, sadly, but this stuff keeps it reasonably happy. I started using this system this summer and swear by it!

 

  • Hair Ties
  • Hairbrush
  • Wide Tooth Comb

Packing List for Europe in the Fall: Vintgar Gorge, Slovenia

Kate’s Makeup:

Given that I don’t wear makeup every day, I carry quite a bit of it–but oh, well. It’s a small amount of space and weight at the end of the day, and I like having it available to me when I want.

Travel Tip:

Place cotton rounds inside each of your compacts, on top of the makeup. I place one in each “dry” product (powder, eyeshadow, blush) and carry them on planes with me rather than checking them–I’ve never had a single issue with a compact breaking since I started doing this!

 

 

  • Lipstick
  • Vaseline
  • Makeup Remover

Packing List for Europe in the Fall: Plaza de Espana, Sevilla, Spain

Male Packing List for Europe in the Fall:

Jeremy’s Clothes:

  • T-Shirts x 5
  • Long Sleeve Waffle Shirts x 1
  • Sweater x 3
  • Long Sleeve Button Down Shirts x 3
  • Jacket x 1

 

  • Slacks x 2
  • Jeans x 1
  • Casual Shorts x 2
  • Work Out Shorts x 1

 

  • Casual Shoes x 1
  • Flip Flops x 1
  • Hiking Boots x 1

 

  • Bathing Suit x 1

 

  • Belt x 1
  • Socks x 7
  • Underwear x 10

Milan in One Day

Jeremy’s Toiletries:

  • Toothbrush (with plastic case over the head)
  • Toothpaste
  • Floss

 

 

  • Contacts
  • Contact Solution
  • Contact Case

 

  • Deodorant

Of course, Jeremy and I share several of our toiletries, but I listed them under both of us to avoid confusion.

Tiny Items Travel Packing List

We are headed to Europe this fall for approximately three months: we plan to be there from late August to late November. Though we may always get a wild hair and decide to go somewhere completely different, right now we’re planning on sticking around Central and Southern Europe, so our packing list for Europe in the fall reflects those climates.

If you’re going for a shorter trip, you may be able to eliminate some of the clothes that aren’t needed in whatever climate you’re visiting–our bathing suits, for example, wouldn’t be much good if we weren’t planning on hitting at least on beach destination in September.

Last but not least: don’t visit Europe without travel insurance!

We use and recommend World Nomads for their affordability, ease of purchasing, and the clarity of their contract.

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Packing List for Europe in the Fall

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17 Comments Write a comment
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17 Comments

  • Fiona Mai August 18, 2017

    This is such a comprehensive packing list that I’m sure anyone can benefit from. It’s true that using a money belt is a bit controversial as you said, but I have to admit that I feel safer and more confident with it when travelling to crowded places. I also find your suggestion of UV Lens Protection quite useful, too.

    • Kate Storm August 20, 2017

      Thanks, FIona! I would definitely get some UV Filters for your lenses–they’re very inexpensive and definitely make a difference.

  • Lisa August 19, 2017

    Wow you guys really have thought of everything! The idea of a portable safe sounds very useful, especially for backpackers. You mentioned a purse at the beginning; is this like a crossover bag? You’re both clearly very organised people, it makes me question my own travelling prep!

    • Kate Storm August 20, 2017

      We definitely try! The portable safe is definitely useful. My purse is a crossover bag, but it’s a fairly small one–definitely couldn’t fit a laptop or anything like that in there!

  • Riely August 19, 2017

    A great packing list that is quite useful for many types of trips. I had no idea that there was Sea Bands available to combat sea sickness! I definitely need those for my next trip out on a boat. I love your tips about camera devices. I need to start getting into photography more and this is very helpful. Thanks! Enjoy your trip to Europe.

    • Kate Storm August 20, 2017

      You will love the Sea Bands! I couldn’t believe how well they worked, and I’m so excited to find an excuse to use them again this fall.

  • Nicole Anderson | Camping for Women August 19, 2017

    What a really well thought through, comprehensive list. I love how you have been more inclusive here than conservative so people can individually cut out things they may not want. I totally agree with the choices you have made on the more expensive items as they have clearly lasted you some time. You have both developed a great system for backpacking and I hope you have a wonderful time in your upcoming travels.

    • Kate Storm August 20, 2017

      Thanks, Nicole! We definitely prefer to pay a little more and buy something once and be done with it when possible.

  • Ami August 20, 2017

    Wow, you have captured every small thing here – from clothes to camera. Even small things like extra zip lock pouches. That is something I remember everytime I am on a travel and realize that the next time I need to add those. Well done and I am book marking this for my easy list for packing next time.

    • Kate Storm August 20, 2017

      Thanks, Ami! Glad we could help. 🙂

  • Lydia Smith August 20, 2017

    Your list is just the best. It covers all that would suitable for a comfy journey. Thanks for this post. I need a new camera, I’d run through the ones on this list maybe I’d find something satisfying.

    • Kate Storm August 20, 2017

      Thanks, Lydia! We definitely love our camera–it has been the perfect camera to learn manual shooting on.

  • Kerry Ireland August 20, 2017

    This is spot on! I am so jealous of your full-time travel life. Its a future goal for me. These pictures are beyond beautiful. I will keep this for my next European adventure in the Fall!

    • Kate Storm August 20, 2017

      Thanks, Kerry! So excited for you to get a chance to travel full time–hope you reach your goal soon!

  • Mimi & Mitch August 20, 2017

    Wow that’s a lot to pack but you guys sure thought of everything to not be needing anything at all! Loved going through your camera gear, it’s always amazing to see what other photographers and travellers pack for it!

  • Cat August 21, 2017

    Such a comprehensive list! It is very important to bring medicine, in case anything happens. Extra memory cards and batteries are also essential!

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