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Essential Items That Should Be a Part of Your Backpacking Gear

Essential Items That Should Be a Part of Your Backpacking Gear

Last Updated on July 10, 2023

It’s tricky to fit everything that you need in just one single backpack. The decision-making process, what to bring and what to leave behind, can be excruciatingly difficult. Backpackers often commit the rookie mistake of cramming way too many items into their bags. Unfortunately, the wight of your belongings can slow you down and tire you out while walking around. In contrast, you will be able to move faster and have a better experience if you bring a lightweight backpack containing only the very essential items.

If you want to go backpacking, you need to know which items are absolutely necessary and which items you should leave behind. To start, here are some things that you should be a part of your backpacking gear:


Ordinary backpacks are usually not suited for adventures. You’ll be walking in different locations and experiencing various weather conditions during your trip, which is why it’s important to bring a backpack that will be handy in these circumstances.

Before packing your items, get a backpack that makes the most sense for the trip you’re planning to take. You can use Oakley backpacks that offer large storage capacities and useful technologies for adventurous trips. Their Sink Lite backpack is made from a lightweight material and has a padded back and straps, making it comfortable to carry during long walks. Meanwhile, the Road Trip Rc backpack has a ripstop water-resistant fabric and a 26-liter capacity, which is suitable for backpackers who want to camp or hike.


Shoes take up a lot of space in backpacks. Thus, you’ll need to set aside your style preferences and choose the most practical footwear for your trip.

First-timer backpacker Marielle Descalsota shared that she made a good choice of bringing only one pair of sneakers on her trip. Sneakers are perfect for backpackers because they are comfortable as you walk around town, but also as you hike up mountains. Descalsota also believes that backpackers would benefit from bringing a pair of flip-flops on their trip. These lightweight sandals will be useful when you’re walking around the hostel, doing a quick errand run, or walking by the shore. Choose a pair that is small, so that they don’t take up too much room in your backpack.

Lightweight clothes

Clothes may be lightweight and foldable, but this doesn’t mean that you should pack plenty of tops and pants. Really think about how many pairs of pants and how many shirts / tank tops / sweaters you’ll realistically wear on your trip.

If you plan to go to lakes or parks, bring clothes that are geared towards outdoor activities and exercise, such as the ones from Columbia Sportswear. The brand offers practical options like lightweight waterproof jackets that can keep you warm and dry during camping trips. Backpackers can also use the Saturday Trail Stretch Pants of Columbia, which has UPF 50 sun protection and rain-and-stain repellent. These pants can protect your body, whether you’re exploring a jungle on a rainy day or roaming the city streets during summer.


Guidebooks are a must-have, especially if it’s your first time exploring a certain country. These books contain useful insight to help you plan your trip better.

My article on backpacking in Vietnam highlighted that a guidebook can help you can figure out how to make your money last as long as possible while you are traveling, and it helps you finding the best spots in the city or country you’re visiting. Guide books also include maps, so you can easily find your way around, and you can see where places to eat and places to stay are in the place you’re visiting.

You have to pack smart, especially if you plan to go on a backpacking adventure. Make sure that you’re choosing the right items for your gear so that you can keep yourself comfortable throughout your trip.