Tag: Packing list

What to pack for a trip to New Zealand in the winter


A trip to New Zealand has been on my bucket list ever since I began traveling internationally in 2012. I dreamed of visiting this Pacific Island nation and looked forward to exploring its gorgeous landscapes and learning more about the people and culture.

Finally, my dreams came true. My boyfriend Ehren and I were able to plan a trip to New Zealand during our summer: July. Things became a bit tricky upon learning July is New Zealand’s winter. Luckily, the north island’s winter is more temperate and rarely sees snow. The best comparison I could think of is Portland in January, maybe a bit warmer.

This is a packing list for the North Island of New Zealand during winter. Our trip was 9 nights, 10 days, and would feature a variety of activities:

  • Museums, shopping
  • Hiking, exploring
  • Dining out
  • Chilling, casual

The weather ranged from sunny to windy and rainy. Weather in New Zealand can change dramatically day by day. The average temperature was mid 50s. 50s and sunny felt different than 50 and rainy, so my best advice is to pack warm clothing and options for layering.

Here’s a list of what I packed (asterisk items are what I call “life-savers!”)


(1) Light cargo jacket

My cargo jacket was perfect over some layers. And the brown boots were lifesavers!

(1) Rain jacket* (Recommendation: don’t go cheap here! Thicker is better, something with a hood, and something that will cover the top of your legs as well if possible)
(1) Zip up fleece* (Great for layering and extra warmth)
(4) Knit sweaters (One included for sleeping/lying around the house in the evenings)
(1) Turtleneck
(1) Cardigan
(1) Jean jacket* (Perfect for casual chic, boutique shopping, museums)

Loving the versatility of my jean jacket, cargo pants and satchel purse.

(2) Tank top blouses
(7) T-shirts* (great for layering!)
(3) T-shirts for sleeping
(1) sleep shorts
(1) Dress


(1) pair of black cargo pants
(1) pair of jeans
(2) pairs of leggings* (One thick one for cold weather. These were lifesavers!)
(1) pair of black pants (Good for dressier days out)
(1) pair of black tights


(1) pair of flats (good for plane, but sadly, nothing else)
(1) pair of ankle boots* (Waterproof is key if you can!)
(1) pair of gym shoes (Something you can use hiking/walking)
(2) pairs of warm socks* (These are essential to keeping your feet warm. The more you pack, the better!)
Miscellaneous other socks


(1) Belt (for cinching the dress)
(2) hats (One a Britxon safari hat, one a knit beanie*)

The Brixton hat is the perfect travel companion.

(2) Scarves (One for keeping warm*, one for fashion)
(1) Pair of gloves*


  • Makeup
  • Jewelry
  • Hair straightener
  • (3) books to read
  • Journal
  • Earplugs* (Perfect for planes and for noisy mornings in the city)
  • Headphones
  • Pens
  • Passport
  • IDs/Credit Cards/Cash
  • Copies of all bookings/travel documents, credit cards
  • Phone charger
  • International adapter
  • Bluetooth speaker (fully charged, as it was not compliant with New Zealand outlets)
  • Toiletries
  • Digital camera
  • Columbia backpack* (Great carry on and wonderful for hiking/outdoor adventuring)
A backpack was essential for this trip.
  • Satchel purse


  • Hair straightener (New Zealand is a casual country and high fashion didn’t seem important)
  • (2) books – one was enough
  • Dress – I wore it one night out to dinner with the tights, but could have done without it
  • Digital camera – I just used my iPhone the whole time
  • Belt


  • Sweatpants (Luckily, my boyfriend packed an extra pair and I was able to use them the entire trip for sleeping/relaxing around the house)

Overall, I felt very well prepared and knew that if I forgot anything that I would be able to purchase it abroad.

Have you ever been to the north island of New Zealand in winter? If so, do you have any must have items?

I hope you find this list useful. My number one piece of advice is layers, layers, layers, followed by: bring a pair of sweat pants or two!


Essential Packing List- Australia

I’m in a wonderful and warm (warmer than Chicago, anyway!) Burbank, California. I’ll be in California for a week, exploring L.A., then flying to Sydney next Monday, January 30th.

As I’ve mentioned in this blog before, I’m backpacking through Australia. I hope to stay for a month (maybe longer?). Below is my essential packing list:


65 Liter Field and Stream backpack

1 knapsack/purse/laptop carryon



Digital Camera

Web cam

Cell phone


Power plug for Australian outlets (Note: Oz outlets have a slanted 3-prong system rather than the U.S. 2. Also power outlets in Oz run on 240 V, rather than 120 V in the US. Check that your electronics’ tags say they are meant for RTW voltages. This info can be found on the tag or charger and read 120V~240V. If your electronic only reads 120V, you will also need a voltage converter. Available in most electronic stores)

All related cords/chargers


An array of tank tops and t-shirts

3 long-sleeved shirts (mainly for California. It could get chilly in January!)

1 pair of jeans

5 pairs of shorts (1 jean, 2 Nike workout shorts, 1 pair of capris, 1 pair sleeper shorts)

7 pairs of underwear

4 pairs of socks (2 black, 2 white)


3 sun dresses

Bathing suit

2 pairs of sandals (one brown, one black), black TOMS knockoffs, gym shoes, flip-flops, black flats

Small black purse for going out

2 fashion belts, 2 regular jean belts

1 lightweight scarf

1 lightweight jacket (will probably leave behind in L.A. until I get back)


Combination lock

Aluminum water bottle




Address Book



Slim wallet with essentials (I.D., credit/debit card, health insurance card, Visa gift card- SCORE!)

1 book (will probably need to pick up another along the way)

Copies of EVERYTHING: My I.D., insurance card, passport, birth certificate, social security card, VISA card, flight information, hostel booking, ETA (electronic visa verification email).

Shower and toiletries:

1 bath towel (cute pattern, as to double for beach towel)

1 hand towel

1 washcloth

Travel sized shampoo, conditioner, body lotion, face wash



Shaving Cream


Tampons (in case they don’t carry my brand in Oz)


Excedrin, Advil, Neosporin, Dramamine, Johnson & Johnson First Aid Kit

Sunblock (SPF 50. I’m a fair-skinned redhead!)

Tweezers, manicure scissors, nail file, nail clipper

2 deodorants (in case they don’t carry my brand in Oz)

Jewelry (earrings, bracelets, rings)

Makeup (the basics like powder, concealer, eye shadow and pencil, blush, mascara, chap stick)

Hair products: Straightener, hair ties and bobby pins, headbands)

Things still needed:

Bug Spray

Small bag for site seeing

Hat (mine got lost in transit)