Wanderlions Master Checklist: Tropix


So I thought it might be helpful to any aspiring travel bugs out there to be well prepared for your up and coming adventure. Since I started traveling in 2012 I’ve learned a great deal about what’s necessary for tropical climates and what is not and have compiled a list which I feel to be pretty thorough without going too far overboard.

Keep in mind this is just an outline and general tweaking will have to cater to each individual adventurer. For instance, since I consider photography to be a major focus of my travels I tend to be a little heavy on the electronics and camera equipment. Alternately, I pretty much hang out in my board shorts and flip flops 24/7 so I keep my clothing on the light side. Plus you can usually pick up anything you need at the local shop or market for dirt cheap so if you need it, just buy it. Even if you have to leave something behind another traveller may find it useful. So pay it forward.

Everything listed below will fit comfortably into a 45L pack and alternate front (or day pack) which should always have your important items and never leave your side. Fer real tho, guard it like it was your new born golden future Olympian billionaire child! Another helpful hint: as you collect random gear and souvenirs for the love of Mustafa send it home! You don’t need to drag it around from boat, to train, to hostel, to airplane, to jungle chasm. Just pay the damn shipping and your back muscles will thank you later.

So without further ado check out my list. I hope you find it as awesome as I do 🙂 Oh and ladies, sorry this list isn’t quite tailored to you but I’m sure you’ll figure out the extras. Just leave the hair dryers and flat irons at home as the climate just won’t be friendly.

Clothing and Attire
-T-shirts 2 (because sometimes a little more shoulder coverage is good)
-Tank tops 5-7 (only way to beat the heat)
-Shorts 2 pair (one pair with zip away bottoms will double as pants)
-Swimwear 1-2 pair
-Socks 2-3 pair (at least 1 warm(ish)
-Underwear 5-7 pair (combined with the swimwear this should be ample for a single weekly wash)
-Flip Flops 1 pair (they will go missing but a cpl bucks will buy you a new pair)
-Runners 1 pair (keep em light and comfy)
-Water Shoes 1 pair (good all-purpose beaters. Vibrams are great!)
-Long Pants 1 (good for treks to keep bug bites down or just warmth at night)
-Light Sweater 1
-Long Sleeve Shirt 1 (you’ll be glad you have this when you’re burnt to a crisp)
-Sunnies 1-2 pair
-Belt 1
-Waterproof Watch
-Adventure Hat (because Indiana Jones never left home without it!)

Toiletries (all travel size)
-Q Tips (also used to clean minor cuts and scrapes)
-Deodorant (for the love of god you’ll need it)
-Razor & Blades (no reason to go all bohemian. Maintenance is always appreciated;)
-Shaving Cream
-Afterbite (those little f$&@ers get itchy)
-Polysporin (to patch up the itchy f$&@ers when you scratch them into oblivion)
-Soap (and snag an extra every once and a while)
-Lip Balm (with SPF)
-Floss (c’mon, get up in there)
-Toothbrush (collapsible are great)
-Toothpaste (for minty freshness)
-Sunscreen (store in ziplock, trust me)
-Aloe (keep with sunscreen, trust me)
-Tweezers (stainless, as cheap ones will rust)
-Nail Clippers (no brainier, also stainless)
-Rubbers (stay safe kids)
-I don’t bother with shampoo as every so often you will have an adequately equipped bathroom. Ladies may want to squeeze in a cpl sample packs though.

-Smartphone and/or Laptop (the 21st century Swiss Army knife. Good for everything)
*Lifeproof, Otter Box or other heavy duty protection for these are recommended!
-Camera (If you’re not really a photo enthusiast your phone will probably suffice)
-Go Pro (definitely a great all-purpose camera across the board)
-Battery Backup (good for at least 2 emergency cell charges)
-Portable speaker (X-Mini’s collapse to almost nothing. Great for straight chillin)
-Portable Hard Drive or flash drive (for hard backups of pictures and vids)
-Universal Charger (at least 2 USB ports is a bonus)
-Charging Cables (an extra for your phone since you’re bound to leave one behind)
-Travel Size Power Bar (great for hostels where outlets can be a commodity)
-SD Card Reader (transferring and backing up photos)
-Extra SD Cards
-Ear Buds (prefer to headphones to save space)

Paperwork & Documents (Carry originals and photocopies separately)
-Passport + a cpl copies (often required and retained upon entry to a new country)
-Drivers Licence + 1 copy
-Birth Certificate (only copy)
-Health Card (only copy)
-SIN (only copy)
-International Driving Permit (some places are fussy about it, most are not)
-Extra Passport Photos 2 or 3
-Travel Insurance Policy and Number
-Emergency Contacts (personal, medical & banking)
-Emergency 24 hour toll free credit card loss prevention lines
-Medical documentation of shots and treatments taken prior to traveling
-I also keep a secure copy of everything electronically including front and back of bank cards and visas for easy reference just in case! Encrypt if possible for added security. How?? Well get creative and develop a number swapping system so if someone finds your stuff you’re not just handing over easy access to all your info. You’re smart, so figure it out. I believe in you 🙂

Basic Medical
-Moleskin (for blisters)
-Gauze Pads
-Gauze Wrap
-Latex Gloves
-Topical Antiseptic/Antibiotic
-Heavy Duty Medical Tape (the cheap stuff won’t stand up to humidity)
-Cloth Bandages (will stick better in high humidity)
-Antiseptic Wipes
-Safety Pins
-Crazy Glue (for minor cuts. No matter how small everything gets infected)
-Consult a travel clinic for other regional specific treatments ie. Malaria tablets etc.

Other Stuff
-Dry Bag
-Pad  Lock
-Ear Plugs (you’ll be grateful for these when your bunk mate is snoring up a storm)
-Sleep Mask (great for bus trips and hangovers)
-Bug Jacket (just a super light mesh one for rural areas and jungle treks)
-Gardening/Mechanic Gloves (good for all kinds of dirty jobs)
-Wet Wipes (for messy situations or just a refresher)
-Security Pouch (something you can keep tight to your body under clothing)
-Quick Dry Towel (keep it compact)
-Inflatable Travel Pillow (when the airport floor is the only option)
-Swiss Army Knife or Multi Tool (can literally save your life)
-Flashlight (Torch)
-Headlamp (good for hands free night treks and caving)
-Business or Personal Cards (networking is key. Have all your info handy)
-Pen (so you don’t always have to borrow one from your neighbour on the plane)
-Deck of Cards (never fails)
-Spork (hybrid utensil that will save your life from time to time)
-Travel sized sewing kit (for minor rips and repairs)
-Ziplock Bags (multiple sizes and wrap with a bunch of elastic bands)
-Lighter (doubles as a bottle opener J)
-Simple Beer Cozy (cuz it’s friggen hot out!)
-Travel Hammock (Mine is made from parachute material and pretty compact)
*Outdoors equipment retailers are gold mines for most of this random stuff

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