If you’re an adventurous traveler, you may be thinking of going backpacking for your next big trip. Seeing the world by foot is one of the best ways to save big on your international travels. Whether you’re thinking of backpacking across Europe and staying in hostels, or you’re planning to backpack across South America and couch surf, you could have an amazing adventure. This type of trip can be tough on your body, so it’s important to do whatever you can to stay healthy. Here are some backpacking tips to help you be kind to your body during your backpacking journey.
Pick the Right Pack
The first thing you want to do is pick the right backpack. You’ll need to make an investment into something that can hold all of your stuff while also being comfortable on your back. Take the time to go into a physical store and try some backpack products out before you buy. Look for a backpack that fits your torso properly and is comfortable against your hips.
Choose a Sturdy Shoe
Since you’ll probably be walking for long periods of time during your trip, the next big purchase should be a pair of comfortable shoes. Consider the climate for the region you’re planning to visit, and also think about the time of year of your travels. Depending on where you’re going that may mean choosing a sturdy hiking boot, high-quality sneakers, or rugged sandals. That way, your feet won’t be suffering from pain throughout your trip.
Lighten Up Your Gear
Backpackers have to also figure out ways to reduce their travel load during their trip. Unlike other types of trips, backpacking has you carrying everything with you most of the time. Pack a few essentials, like a limited selection of clothing, and find laundry facilities when you need a fresh outfit. Then your back and hips will have less pressure on them from your stuff.
An active vacation like backpacking means that you must do whatever you can to keep up with the challenging pace. Hydration is essential so your body will be able to keep going on the journey. You may want to purchase a quality water bottle before your trip so you can simply refill it as you make your way through different towns and destinations. If you’re traveling through a less developed area, be sure to do your research to find out if the local water is safe to drink.
Protect Your Skin
Being outdoors for so long can also be tough on your skin. No matter what season of the year you’re traveling in, the harmful effects of the sun could cause sunburn or damage. Be sure to develop a consistent routine to apply sunscreen on any skin that is showing. Sunglasses are also an important piece of your travel gear to keep your eyes protected.
Pack Nutritional Snacks
Carrying a heavy backpack for extended periods of time can tire you out quickly. You can keep your energy levels up by munching on snacks that have lots of protein throughout your journey. Before your trip, make your own protein bars ahead of time. Try mixing some natural peanut butter and some decadent Just Cookie Dough from Hampton Creek to make your own tasty protein treat.
Be Choosy With Your Hostels
Next, make sure that your overnight pit stops are safe and clean. Hostels can be a great way to save money on your trip and to meet other travelers. It’s essential to inspect your possible sleeping area before you commit to a hostel. Bed bugs are a common ailment at shared facilities like this, so investigate your potential space before you settle down for the night. Look along the mattress seams and in other small spaces for evidence of bed bugs, which include brown stains, dead carcasses, and small circular bugs crawling around.
Take Time to Rest
Finally, if your trip goes on for several weeks, be sure to take plenty of rest stops. Walking on a trail or through villages all day is not a feasible way to travel for weeks at a time. Every few days, find a place to settle down in for a while so you can enjoy some rest and relaxation.
When you’re ready to depart on your next backpacking trip, you can enjoy yourself more by following some simple health tips. Then, you can come back from your trip feeling great and ready to plan the next adventure.