Packing is not your favorite part of a trip? Here are some handy tips
Lucky you, here are my tried and tested tips for your perfect packing list. Don’t leave your house without it.
The most important thing I learned about what to pack for a yoga retreat is to plan your packing list around not how many items etc. you should bring but around occasions: what do you want to do and what is the best outfit for this occasion?
Some typical yoga holiday occasions might be: a yoga class (obviously), a day at the beach, hiking, exploring the next town, going out to a nice restaurant, hanging out in the evenings at the retreat with your new yoga friends, flirting with a cute yoga guy at the beach bar, something cozy for the night that won’t shock your roommate… you got the idea.
Focus on occasions and and accessorize!
When you have your list of possible occasions and outfits the next step: how can I get everything packing in my suitcase – and how do I not spend all of my holiday budget on preparing for the trip? My best friends are outfits that do double duty. For example I have a black cotton jersey dress that is just perfect for the beach, to hang out during the day and with some added heels and jewelry saved me on New Years Eve.
Accessories are really important, too. I am always packing some cheap jewelry like hippie bracelets and chunky necklaces, that transform my outfit from beach to the bar easily and don’t take much space in my luggage.
Take it easy on the shoes
One piece of advice from a seasoned traveler: don’t take many shoes with you. You won’t need them and packing them takes up a lot of space. For a trip somewhere warm and sunny a pair of sneakers, packing a pair or flip-flops and one pair of comfortable sandals is sufficient. If you are somewhere in the countryside on a Spanish or Greek Island you won’t need your new designer high heels. And they wouldn’t like being worn on dusty roads, either.
Regarding exercise clothes: 1 – 2 sweaty yoga classes a day you will be tempted to bring A LOT of exercise clothes. Restrain. You can wear them more than once, really, if you are not participating in a Bikram yoga retreat.
Bring some travel washing liquid and give your shirts a quick wash in-between if needed, they will dry fast in the sun.
2 – 3 pair of yoga pants
3 – 4 yoga tops
1 light jersey cardigan or fleece to wear in the mornings
A pair of warm socks for morning meditations (is it just me? I can’t meditate with cold feet)
A nice big shawl to snuggle in, also to wear on the plane
1 pair of long black leggings that you can wear on the flight and on colder nights. Wear with socks and sneakers.
T-shirt for traveling and longer shirt to layer on top
Long woolen cardigan to wear on plane and also for evenings
For the beach and everything else:
Beach cover (for example simple cotton short/dress)
Sarong that can double as a beach towel
Comfortable pants for the evenings, wear with a nice t-shirt or blouse and the warm cardigan
Skirt that you can wear for sightseeing with a simple shirt
Simple jersey dress or cotton sundress that packs well without getting crinkled. A great maxidress would also work well day and night!
Underwear and sleepwear (I invested in a really nice pajama last winter and I am so glad I did: I feel so comfortable walking around at night trying to find a bathroom in a foreign villa)
Packing for entertainment:
Many, many books (I love my Kindle). Don’t don’t be afraid to bring a real beach blockbuster or the newest mystery novel with you, if you feel like it
Packing the obvious:
Sunglasses, sun cream, shower stuff, toothpaste and toothbrush, hair brush, hair conditioner and some sun protection spray if you have longer hair, moisturizer and hand cream.
Get your eyebrows and eye lashes tinted before you go and leave your makeup at home beside some tinted moisturizer, bronzing powder and gloss
A yoga mat. Most retreats will have yoga mats available, but it’s nice to have your own. An alternative would be a light cotton top for the yoga mat.
Don’t forget your travel documents, credit cards and you should really get some travel insurance
This is a guest post by lovely Susanne! She has set up her own digital business Yowunga retreat listing – combining expertise with her love for yoga and traveling. It’s a real project of love! At the moment she is on Bali and works freelance as a digital consultant and online project manager so if you need support please contact her here.