Planning on spending your summer vacation in across the pond travelling throughout Europe? If you are and you’re not quite sure what to pack, don’t you worry, I’m here to help. European summers are going to be hot and they are going to be busy, so packing as light as possible is going to be essential as nobody wants to be hauling a suitcase bigger than they are down crowded cobblestone streets in 30-40 degree heat so in order to avoid that, I’ve divided this post up into three sections must haves, could haves and don’t haves.
Sunscreen is going to be your absolute best friend during the summer in Europe as let’s be real, you’re going to be spending more time outside pounding the pavement and enjoying everything this beautiful continent has to offer than you will be doing anything else. For us Canadians everything is going to be more expensive once you’re there so be sure to bring your own sunscreen, it’ll save you a couple dollars and isn’t going to take up much room in your bag.
Europe is known for issues with pickpockets, so a money belt is going to be vital in ensuring you keep your money and important documents safe. Sitting right on your waist and underneath your clothes, a money belt is the perfect way to keep your important items somewhere you don’t have to worry about them being vulnerable to these sneaky thieves. A money belt will also be much cooler and easier to carry than a big purse or backpack in the high temperatures and beating sun. Be sure to be careful about where you’re storing your passport as well, sweat and humidity can easily cause water damage to a passport which could make your trip home a lot more difficult than it needs to be, having a waterproof money belt to store your passport in can easily prevent that!
Something that many first time travellers don’t realize when travelling to Europe is that there outlets are completely different than the ones that we have here. Adaptors are super affordable on Amazon and I recommend investing in a universal one so then no matter where you travel you’ll be set and won’t have to keep repurchasing new ones! If you have multiple devices that you’ll want to be charging at the same time, bring a small extension cord with you as well so you have room to charge more than one or two things at a time.
Light, breathable clothing
Light and breathable clothing is going to be a lifesaver throughout your travels. Not only will these clothes keep you cool, they’ll also be easy and lightweight to fit into your luggage. Light clothing won’t hold as much moisture such as sweat and humidity, and therefore will also not need to be washed as frequently which is always nice when moving from place to place.
When travelling Europe in the summer, a comfortable pair of sandals is going to be most important type of shoe you bring with you. Sandals that you can walk all day in are super important to have as after a day of non stop adventuring, you’re feet are going to get sore. In my opinion sneakers or running shoes aren’t ideal in the summer as you’re feet will get too hot and they are a pain to take on and off every time you want to stick your feet in the water.
Having a hat with you is a super easy way to keep yourself cool and safe from the sun. Hats are also a large part of European fashion, so having a fun and cute hat to wear as you travel around will help you fit right in with the locals!
Having a second bag in Europe isn’t essential and many people would warn against it, but if you plan to be carrying around multiple things everyday such as your camera, a book, a journal or anything else along those lines then having a small purse or backpack to wear around would be a good idea! Otherwise a money belt should be more than enough for your money, documents and phone.
Reusable Water Bottle
Big plastic water bottles that you can purchase from any corner store or market are cheap and a lot of the time recommended when travelling in Europe as drinking tap water can sometimes be worrying, but if you have room having a reusable bottle can be super handy to have and easy to refill.
These will undoubtedly be some of the most amazing days of your life, so having a journal to document your memories and experiences in is always a great idea if you have room for it. Although I doubt you’ll ever forget the trip and the time you spend in Europe it’s nice to be able to write down the smaller moments and the feelings you experience as those are something you might not immediately recall.
Towels are available at most hotels and can be purchased almost anywhere, but there are places that you won’t have one when you need one so if you can spare the room and avoid having to buy one over there to use for the beach or pool, bringing a towel from home can be very helpful!
Leave any valuable items that you aren’t going to need at home, this includes the necklace that has been passed through your family through generations and any unnecessary electronic devices. As mentioned above, Europe is known for pickpockets and thieves so don’t risk losing these meaningful items if you don’t need to. As you’ll likely be moving from place to place, it’s also very easy to lose items in the process or accidentally leave them behind so save yourself the worry and keep those items safe at home!
Thank you for reading, hopefully this helps those of you planning a trip to Europe this summer with your packing!