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What to pack for an active break!

May 31, 2016

Packing for a conventional holiday is easy, but sometimes we forget the basics. It can prove even more complicated when the holiday involves water-sports or activities we don’t partake in regularly. Here’s a list of things you might want to consider packing for an active break – although some of these might not be relevant so make sure you tailor it to your holiday!


Good walking shoes – in almost any active holiday, you’re going to be walking. Whether it be to the start of the cycle point, or the top of the canyons. It can be a good idea to bring a good pair of walking shoes. It can also be worth-while traveling in your walking shoes, as not only are airports big, but shoes can take up lots of room in your suitcase.

A spare pair of old shoes – Make this a small, grubby old pair of shoes if you have them, these are especially needed if you are doing water-sports on your break. With the likes of white-water rafting, canyoning and boating, it is almost certain you are going to get your feet wet. There is nothing worse than having to walking back to the transfer or hotel with soaking shoes that are going to rub the whole way home. I recommend packing this spare pair in your rucksack so that you can slip them on before the activities and ditch them into the bag again after!

Waterproof sun cream – This one doesn’t need much explaining. Protect your skin. I would also opt for waterproof as it is more resilient, and will protect for a little longer if you’re sweating or partaking in water sports. But regular application is key.

Deet – Certain types of mosquitos are present in Italy and Slovenia and also on the south coasts of Spain, France, Croatia. If you’re going to be out a lot, and find that you attract mosquitos, then I would suggest packing Deet. These sprays are available in most high-street chemists like superdrug or boots. For Europe, your protective spray doesn’t need to be very strong, I’d saying anything over 30% deet would do the job. None of these areas are malarial zones, so this isn’t really a necessity, just if you want to stop any nasty bites.

Micro-fibre travel towel – This can be a great one to pack in a rucksack if you’re going to be doing water-sports, or multi-activity. Indeed it’s brilliant for any active holiday, especially if you have booked multiple accommodations and will be travelling around a fair bit. These towels can be rolled up very small, and dry very quickly. They’re available from most outdoor stores.

Backpack – I would say this is a must for any active holiday. A small backpack that you can pack the necessities in. If you’re like me, then you’ll snacks for through-out the day. Backpacks are also great for carrying towels, spare shoes, bottles of water and that all important map.

Refillable water bottle – Goes hand-in-hand with active holidays. Save yourself from constantly buying bottles of water and just bring a refillable water bottle and keep it in your backpack :P Save room when packing it by putting your socks in it!

Torch – This is a random one. Unless you’re camping, or staying at an eco-resort, then you probably won’t need a torch. However, if you’re hiking, cycling or trekking, then it might be handy to pack a small head or hand torch just incase.

Washing powder – Again, this is a random one, and most people won’t need this at all. However, if you’re self-catering or camping, then this could come in very handy. You’re more than likely to get dirty on a go-active holiday, and it’s smarter to wash clothes while you’re travelling rather than risk the baggage limit and pack for all eventualities.

Solar-powered charger – Could be useful, could be pointless. If you’re going to be spending most of your time out of the hotel at your activities, or maybe you’re camping, then this is a much needed investment. Especially if you’re snap-happy like myself.

So there you have it, a “think outside the box” packing list. They might not all be necessary, but it gives food for thought for items you may not have previously thought of. Feel free to add to the list in the comments below!

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