Packing for China


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Eek! I leave on an adventure with my boyfriend this week.

Seeings as I’m obsessed with packing and travel, I’ve already put together checklists and game plans for the best pack possible. Here’s what I’m taking along…

These tickets were booked about 6 months ago and it’s finally our week of departure! We’re heading to Hong Kong, Guangzhou, Xiamen, Shanghai, Beijing and Chengdu for a whirlwind, 2 week holiday and are missioning with backpacks on ferries, trains, planes and on-foot. So I’m taking Erykah Badu’s advice (circa “Bag Lady”) and plan to pack light.

Here’re some tips and tricks I’ve learnt through my travels. I think, and hope, I’ve got this packing thing down to a fine art.

  1. The Carry On Essentials


Water bottle to stay hydrated (after taking full advantage of the free booze on the plane). Earphones for music and movies (I feel a little icked out at the thought of using the ones they provide on the plane) Sunnies and of course my phone for quick snaps and my crossword app! I’ll probably also take along a few sachets of tulsi tea because plane food can make me feel quite bleh.

We’ll also be taking a Go Pro, my Canon DSLR and Garth’s film camera to document the journey and I promise I’ll share some of those snaps with you too! After all, if it’s not on social media, it didn’t happen.

2. The Backpack


This River Island backpack has seen me through numerous music festivals, camping trips and flights. Handbags aren’t that practical for day missions and this guy can hold books, water, cameras, jackets, padkos and everything else we might need for a full day of exploring.

3. The Obvious


This is where my OCD comes in. I never travel without making a million copies of my ID, passport, flight details etc and stashing them in different bags, in case, God forbid, one went missing. I normally get a transparent plastic pocket folder so that all my docs are quick to hand to make going through customs and border control, as seamless as possible. Oh and don’t forget to phone your bank and Medical Aid to let them know you’ll be out the country too!

4. The Time Passers


14 hour flights and train trips means plenty of time to relish in being an utter booknerd. I know I should get a Kindle but I love collecting real life, actual books – I’m old-school/impractical like dat. I’ll also take my personal journal for general musings and then buy a journal when I get there to act as my travel journal. I’ve got one for every country I’ve been to since I was 17, all packed with ticket stubs, illustrations, post cards and anecdotes and I re-read them all the time. Mustn’t forget to take along a little Pritt stick and a fine-liner for scribbling.

5. The Life Savers


Even though I’ve chopped off most of my hair, I still get hot and bothered very quickly. These hair elastics are amazing for pulling in (most of ) my hair, lessening hair breakage AND you can lie back without your rigid ponytail or bun digging into your head and sabotaging any chances of sleep. Pro Tip: I’m all for beauty-on-a-budget but in this case, don’t get the cheap knock-offs, they really really don’t work as well. I got these 3 for R80 at Gerard Wells and they’ve retained their shape and elasticity like a baws.

6. The Wardrobe


My outfits will consist mainly of my trusty vintage Levis, a pair of denim shorts, black gym leggings and a collection of tees. I’ll have to mix and match over the next two weeks and forgo any hopes of that “travel chic” look. My comfy Nikes will help me do most of my walking and this thrifted Wrangler Denim Jacket will be my go-to should the temperature dip. I also find a pashmina is a travel must-have – whether you’re sitting on it, sleeping on it or accessorising with it.

7. The Skin Saver


I once interviewed a model and a MUA on a shoot I was working on and both swore by Rosehip oil for travel, seeings as air-conned planes and new travel environments can dry out your skin. So I got a bottle to try and incorporated it into nightly routine and I LOVE the results. This one’s organic and from Faithful To Nature.

8. The Dream Maker


I got this lavender infused eye-mask in my last order from Faithful To Nature and use it every damn night. I’m such a light sleeper and this helps me head to dream land in a hot minute. Ideally, I wish I could find the one Audrey wears in Breakfast At Tiffanies but this floral tannie dress print still does the trick.

9.  The Toiletries

IMG_1206IMG_1209Most travel 101 rules stipulate toiletries need to be in clear plastic bags so these toiletry bags from Woolies are a nice step up from Ziplocs. I’ll take along the essentials only – Sunscreen, basic make-up, medicine and deo. Oh and my nifty 100% compostable bamboo toothbrush and natural toothpaste that I also got in my last FTN order. I had to share it –  I think they’re so cool!

So there we go, that’s the gist of it. I’ll most likely forget a few things or take a long a tee I won’t even use once but that’s travel for ya! If you’ve got any top travel tips please share them with me below!

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