Tips and Things You'll Need for Traveling (With or Without Kids)
For the past three years, I have done quite a bit of traveling! I have lived in an RV, a pop-up trailer, my mini-van and spent a couple months backpacking in Hawaii – all with my young toddler at my side. I am hoping by sharing what I’ve learned, you too can benefit for any future trips you have planned and skip some unnecessary issues that I’ve learned from.
Okay – first things first, don’t over pack if you plan on traveling around in your vehicle… You will honestly need less than you think. And yes, ladies this means clothes! You will wear things multiple times when you are out in nature. I have gone through the headache of realizing I packed way too many outfits and never put on half of them. Bring clothing that you feel comfortable hiking in and lounging around camp. Even if you’re traveling in the summer, bring a good warm jacket, beanie and some layers.
Stay organized! Keep your vehicle super clean and get bins if necessary to have your things in their rightful place. Nothing is more frustrating than when you’re digging around in your car trying to find something when you need it. Like a flashlight after the sun has set or some dry warm socks!
You will need good cooking supplies – I really love cast iron skillets for they are easy to clean up and have no chemicals that leech into your food like the non-stick pans do. Get a good silverware set, meaning nothing plastic. Plastic toxins also leech into food when the temperature is over 80 degrees. Have some re-usable bowls, plates, and cups as well.
Maintain a clean diet when you’re out on your travels. Allow your body to detox and thrive from good healthy foods! By doing this, you will have super mental clarity and abundant energy. I recommend bringing some coconut oil (it’s multi-useful: cooking, sunscreen, and anti-bacterial) Bring out some vegetables to make a soup over the fire… I also get cheap bulk items, such as: lentils, beans, rice and oatmeal. I also bring raw honey, wraps or sandwich fixings, almond/ peanut butter, and some kind of sweet for those nights you get a chocolate craving.
Invest in a good quality knife, some lighters, matches, head-lamp, an extra flashlight and batteries
Bring along some of the following for quick fix repairs: duct tape, zip-ties, battery cables, candles…. Be sure you know how to change a tire and that you have a spare with you and the equipment needed just in case. Also bring a map – in the event you can’t use your cellphone!
Basic hygiene stuff and first aid kit – hydrogen peroxide, Band-Aids, alcohol wipes, toilet paper, tooth brushes, shampoo (and bring a couple towels)
I don’t buy firewood as there is usually plenty to find in the forest… Keep any paper waste or cardboard that can be used for getting a fire going. This has helped me a lot in wet climates!
Bring a journal ~ write about your experiences, the people you meet, the feelings and emotions that arise within you when you are out in the wild.
Good hiking shoes, a camel-pack (water pack), hat, whistle – know your limits before going on a hike and pay attention to the weather. If there are common thunderstorms in the afternoon, be sure to hit the trail early! If you are on your own, leave a note at your camp (like in your car) of where you were headed.
Bring simple toys for your kids to enjoy in camp… trucks, shovels, blocks, ect… not too many though – there will be plenty of stuff for them to use their imaginations with in the forest
You will need a good quality sleeping bag and extra blankets (depending on where you’ll be and when)
Whether you’re staying in a campground, or passing other people on the trail – talk with them and see if they know other cool places to visit… Also ask the locals in nearby towns of their favorite places to camp and go check them out. This is how I have found some neat secret spots, which were also usually free
Nothing is better than fresh spring mountain water, so check out findaspring.com to see if there are any local springs near your camping destination.
And of course, bring a good camera! I want to see those sweet pics from your adventures
For some free campsites, check out freecampsites.net, you can find reviews from other travelers on various spots which is nice!
Also, a great way to give back and to learn some stuff while traveling is to visit intentional communities and organic farms... Visit ic.org for a variety of community listings across the country. Join WWOOF (wwoof.net) to help out on organic farms and meet some wonderful people!
*Remember, the more basic and simple you keep your travels the better! Maintain your vehicle, keep up with the oil changes and general maintenance. Keep a positive vibe if things don’t go as expected and never take anything personally <3
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