The past year has been one of road trips. From Iceland to Mexico to Costa Rica to Nashville and the Smoky Mountains to Route 395, and countless trips to Wisconsin, I’ve spent a lot of time in the car. And did you know Route 66 starts right here at Grant Park in Chicago? Definitely going on the list for next summer. With all these road trips I’ve gotten really good at packing for hours in the car.
Here are my road trip essentials:
Comfy clothing – You want to wear clothes that are comfortable enough to wear for long periods of sitting in a car, but cute enough for roadside photo stops. (Or maybe only bloggers think about that…). Jeans, white v-neck, some cute accessories, done. I’m also a big fan of flowy dresses.
Lightweight shoes – Similarly to comfortable clothing, you want to wear comfortable shoes. As you know I like minimal packing, so I bring a pair of shoes that can be used for both hiking and walking around cities. I recently discovered Native shoes and am obsessed. These are the lightest shoes I have ever put on my feet. The Vancouver-based company has been in business since 2009, and aims to create ‘Future Classics’ by combining casual, iconic shoe silhouettes with newer technology. That’s how they’re so light! I have the Monaco Low in black and navy and am obsessed.
Sunglasses – Duh. You can’t drive if you’re blinded by the sun.
Snacks! – One of the best parts of road tripping is stopping for snacks along the way. Earlier this year I had In-n-Out for the first time ever. Yes, ever. Isn’t that crazy?
Usually I opt for healthier snacks though. I really love KIND bars, because they’re healthy, tasty, and have a really great mission: to be kind and remember there’s more to business than just profit.
They have these new Pressed by KIND bars that are like the fruit leathers from my childhood but wayyy better. (Did anyone else grow up on fruit leather?). I’ve tried every flavor, but am especially partial to Cherry Apple Chia and Pineapple Coconut Chia. They’re made with ONLY fruit, veggies, and chia. Healthy and delicious. The perfect break from fast food on the road.
Water Bottle – Staying hydrated on the road, especially if you’re stopping to hike or take other adventures, is important. Sure, you could buy water bottles as you go, but that’s bad for the Earth and your wallet. Bring your own water bottle instead, and fill up along the way. (Most rest stops and parks have water fountains). I’ve been using the Contigo Ashland water bottle, which keeps water cold for up to 18 hours. It also has an easy to drink out of straw, so you won’t spill while driving or veer off the road trying to unscrew the lid. Plus, it’s 100% BPA free! For all you coffee fanatics like myself, I also have the Contigo Travel Mug, which I refill way too many times with gas station coffee (which is weirdly becoming my favorite kind of coffee).
Playlist – Every road trip needs a great playlist! Here are some of my fave road tripping songs.
Travel makeup – Road trips are low key, and your makeup should be too. Some of my favorite multi-tasking travel makeup here.
Swimming Suit – For motel pools, Icelandic hot springs, and beach stops.
Fast dry towel – After those hot spring stops you’ll want to dry off. It’s also great if you’re camping.
A pack of cards – For when you’re stuck in the middle of nowhere.
What are your road trip essentials? And have you ever done Route 66? Send me your tips!
In My Road Trip Carry On