Wether your travelling to SriLanka, Malaysia, Indonesia or anywhere along that part of the continent make sure you have made a list of the following and they are all in your luggage and some you might want to carry in your handbag.
1. Cotton Clothes
You will probably need the most comfortable cotton clothes ever. It is unlike just walking the summers in the US or Europe, tropical climate can be quite unpredictable and most often humid. Though it depends on which part of the year you are travelling in, it is best to carry lose fitting cotton wear and may be a hat in case you are a hat person and if you don’t wear a hijab. And yes when I say hijab, please carry the light weight cotton ones. Pashminas are a big no no, they can be pretty conjusted around your neck making you sweat and they are also heavy on you. Wrap hijabs with in single layer so that you feel coller inside.
2. Flip Flops and Walking shoes
Buy yourself two pairs of comfortable flip flops and do carry with you your walking shoes. Whenever its the right time to wear either do so as appropriate to your schedules (road trips, shopping by walk). If you have planned on visiting the beaches, you will need beach slippers ( regular rubber flip flops can break off due to the sand). There was once I bought myself a new pair of Nike walking shoes in Malaysia but I always carried my flip flops in my ba k pack so that I could swit h it when I had a pinch in my feet due to wearing a new pair of shoes. Its important to be comfortable that look great during a holiday..
Oh! YES. The mighty sun would be everywhere outside and for your surprise you might see sun even while it rains in Srilanka, India and Malaysia so you will have to put any bare skin coated with this stuff. I recommend body shop SPF 24 vitamin C sun screen. Has a very refreshing aroma to it. GARNIER is great too. This one should go in to your hand bag. Bring along baby sunscreen if you have kids.
4. Mosquito repellent
Again something you need if you are out and about in the late evenings when you are more prone to them mosquitoes. However until you witness their presence you do not really need to wear the repellent. This one should also go in to your hand bag. 😉 you know just in case?
5. Over the shelf meds
Panadol, pain killers, strepsils, salon pass , pain relief balms (vicks / headfast) and digestive tablets/gaviscon are something I carry wherever I go even if its to my in laws who are a few kms away from home and even if I am to stay there only a few days. If you have special food allergies you might want to carry your prescribed meds or some Alegra 180 with you ( I can’t sadly live without these). You might wonder if you might need to carry all that. Trust me it is best to carry anything and everything that would make you comfortable and regret free during your trip. Besides, you might not be able to find certain specific brands that your body is use to in the country or locality you would be staying in. Do not ever plan on going there and buying these items. It only puts you in more distress and regret.
6. Personal toiletteries
Yes! The hotel has them but its best you carry travel size bottles of your usual brand facial wash, shower gell, shampoo, conditioner. Yoo might need to pack small bottle of body butter / moisturizer / hand cream, facial wipes /refeshing spray and lip balm in your hand bag. Its also best for women to carry what they will need for the month with them. I dont personally like to use the shampoo and conditioners at the hotel toilet since they are not branded and their manufacturing is quite doubtful. Its totally upto you though.
7. Sun glasses, spectacles, contact lenses ( details )
You never know when you’ll have a sunny sky. It can hapoen anytime during the day and its quite unpredictable so you’ll need a pair of sun glasses. If you wear contact lenses do carry with you the stiring case and the natural tears or stirage liquid. Some parts of India can be very dusty and you might have to have these in case you need to switch to your glasses. I’d advice you wear your spectacles rather than your contact lenses if your going on a road side site seeing or food hunting along the busy bazars of Mumbai /Chennai.
8. Bottle of mineral water
Ofcourse you can buy them when your thirsty but it does not hurt for you to carry some half a litre ofwater with you just in case the sun was harsh on you and you were sweaty or extremely thirsty. I don’t usually hesitate when I should buy from the street vendors in India, SriLanka,Singapore, Bankok or Malaysia but some of you might have to depend on only the canned drinks. Nevertheless it doesnt hurt to carry some H2O to keep yourself hidrated. I carry a 400 ml tiny bottle since i don’t like carrying heavy backpacks when i should walk alot during a holiday.
9. Beach bag and everything you need for the swim
If youare thinking of swimming and are at the coast line, you will need bikini, shorts and any swimwear u are use to. For muslims its best you carry dark colored non staining loose pants with an elastic at the ankle line to prevent the pants from slipping up when in water. You can wear a loose t shirt that is not transparent on top. Your hijab can be a turban style. As long as you dont show much skin and are enjoying the beach that would be perfect. Im thinking Langkawi, Penang, Maldives, SriLankan beaches and Bali. Woooooohhhh…
This goes wthout a say. You might have to carry a good camera with a power bank in case it runs outofpower. We also carry our hard driveso that when our memory card is full we can usea localcafeoruse a laptop at the hotel to transfer the pictures in to our pen drive. I carry a self cleaning anti virus installed pendrive forextra safety. Its also best that the pen drive does notcontain any of your other details again to prevent them from getting lost when using other pcs.
If you are travelling with your baby there is a whole lot of things you will need and you can find those in a separate post here.