Barcelona & Italy, June 2017
We will be visiting Barcelona, Spain and 3 Italian cities (Rome, Venice, Cinque Terre) over 10 days. We will have half-day layovers in South London, England and Copenhagen, Denmark where we will visit the town for a couple hours for lunch and quick sightseeing. So technically we will be setting foot on 4 countries!
A few main notes:
We will be backpacking, meaning we will bring only 1 backpack and 1 small personal item (small bag) to carry-on to planes.
Wifi is available at each Airbnb we are staying at, with limited access during the day while we're out. I've found cell service is not necessary since you can download maps and info in advance, and Facetime via wifi at night. However, wifi is available at most cafes if needed.
Weather will average 72 degrees and sunny across the region with light showers on occasion.... perfect!
Our physical activities will mainly include lots walking, hiking, and beaches (if you consider laying out an activity, which I do!). Just to underscore... it will include LOTS of walking, up to 10+ miles in a day (Rome is huge and best on foot!). Also equal amounts of eating :)
13-day trip in total. 3 days traveling. 10 days in Spain and Italy.
Fly in/out of Oakland Airport via Norwegian Airlines. I will drive us to/from, leaving my car in the parking facility.
Leave Elk Grove Monday 6/5 by 11am, returning Saturday 6/17 by 7pm.
We will not have access to washer/dryers, but I will have soap to clean small items in the sink as needed.
Light, breathable shorts that you can sweat in (workout shorts that look like street wear is a happy medium, Hurley makes good stuff). You will definitely be sweating while walking through Rome in the sun, and we will be doing moderate hiking in Cinque Terre. Its also good to pack a pair that's more nice looking for dinners etc.
Short sleeve shirts, ideally that can dry fast if you hang them. TJ Maxx workout clothes section usually has nice plain Nike shirts, etc that look like regular shirts but are moisture wicking. 100% cotton is ok for a few shirts but they stink faster and dry slower. But just pack whatever is comfortable!
Flip flops for the beach or a hot day. You're not gonna be walking around town in sandals most likely because the ground is usually filthy, uneven and lots of foot traffic that will step on you. Plus we'll be walking a lot.
Just bring one pair of shoes you'd be ok walking in all day, as well as hiking in. Nikes or something. If you have room for a 2nd pair, then go for it. But don't plan to bring more than that.
Nice Shirt x2-4:
For dinners/nights out. Again, people dress pretty nice there so you may end up wanting to fit in more by dressing up more than you normally would walking around town at home.
Waterproof Jacket x1:
Pick one light hooded waterproof jacket that is ideally "packable" (meaning it folds up into a little pouch or something). People don't really do umbrellas and they take up space so if you have a hood then it should be enough to get by.
Warm Layer x1:
It may get chilly at night or on the plane, so you will need something warm. A light sweathshirt or sweater that can be layered on top of shirts and under your jacket.
Try to pack enough for 7 days, and plan to wash at least once on the trip.
Joggers would be best, jeans are always good although it may get too warm for them, and they're heavy to pack.
Hat, sunglasses. Optional: a smaller "day bag" of some sort to carry your purchases, water, etc. This can also serve as your "personal item" to carry onto the plane.
For the beach!!
You will need to pack for carry-on, meaning one 1-Quart size bag for liquid toiletries, all packed in 3 oz. containers or smaller. You will need to use less product over there (ie, I don't use my regular hair or face product regimens, to save space and time).
We can share toiletries like soap and toothpaste, as well as first aid like Tylenol, Pepto Bismol, bandaids, etc - which I will bring. Here's the other stuff I recommend you bring:
Liquids: Shampoo/conditioner (2-in-1 is best), face lotion, sunblock, face wash, eye drops or other medicines as needed, small hand sanitizer (!)
Non-Liquids: Deodorant, floss, toothbrush, small loofah
You will want an an approx. 40-Liter backpack - specs of bag are limited to the carry-on limit for the airlines (14 x 21 x 15 inches).
This is my bag and it is perfect.
I bring a large purse as my free "personal item" with all the stuff I'll want to access on the plane (phone, wallet, snacks, chapstick, sweater, headphones, charger).
To save space in your backpack, plan to travel/fly wearing your bulkiest clothes (sweathshirt, jeans, etc).
You'll want to roll your clothes a special way to make it fit easily. Here's a reference video on HOW to pack: youtube.com/watch?v=j7HJYoAlqI0
Anything valuable, odds of losing or having something stolen are moderate.
Any electronics beyond your phone and a camera if need be. The odds of them frying/being ruined by the higher electrical currents of the outlets overseas is big. If you bring an electric razor, plan to not charge it on the trip.
A power converter to charge your phone - I will bring that.
A charging cable/wall unit for your phone.
Digital entertainment. Empty excess data off your phone and back it up. Download music, books, podcasts, videos, etc to use an entertainment on trains and planes - we'll be in transit for like 30 hours total, without wifi!
A book. If you have room and want to read a physical book, go for it.
A handful of ziplock bags of various sizes. You'd be surprised how useful these can become.
Cash! For meals, snacks, gifts for yourself (!). We will convert your cash at the airport to Euros, and since their currency is stronger than ours, you will lose about 10% value on the exchange - so plan accordingly ($1 USD = 0.90 Euros).
Proof of insurance, ID and Passport. Please photograph these items (both sides) and upload them to my Dropbox before we leave, so we have access in case of emergencies (ie, wallet is lost).