Let’s talk a little bit about one unusual but very popular way of traveling. It’s a special way of traveling where you make the most of your feet!
It’s about backpacking. Every year in the cities more and more travelers on foot can be found with large backpacks on their backs holding a map and looking around curiously. In the United States and Western Europe, this is a common picture, while in recent years it has been seen more and more in the rest of America, Europe, and far Asian countries.
Libellule reveals to you why this method is so popular, what are its advantages and disadvantages, which destinations are usually the target of a backpacker and tips for those who want to try it.
What is Backpacking
Surely each of you has at least once in your city or other environment seen a man or a group of people with big bags, simple clothes, and a map in their hands curiously looking around and constantly asking where a particular street or place is.
Backpacking is a low-budget independent trip where large backpacks are carried instead of suitcases, and instead of staying in hotels, one prefers to travel modestly, usually eats in motels and more and more backpackers choose to sleep in nature.
Public transport such as low-cost planes and trains is used for transport, and lately, more and more backpackers are using hitchhiking, which is especially popular among young people who want to get to know the local population. If you want to try this type of travel you will be convinced that experiences you get this way are much bigger and more interesting than when you travel the usual way.
A restless traveler on foot
When you decide on backpacking you need to be aware that you will spend most of your trip on your feet. Backpackers are usually people with an adventurous spirit and inexhaustible energy and whether they are young or old, they are tireless. Such is Tim Leffel who backpacked the entire globe at a time when there was not so much connectivity in the world, internet connections, ATMs everywhere, and cheap plane tickets.Now Tim says backpacking is much easier but he doesn’t have his own charm. You can read the interview with Tim here.
An invaluable experience
Backpacking provides an invaluable experience that cannot be felt so intensely and deeply in other ways of traveling. Because backpacking gives you complete and direct contact with the environment, nature, people, and the like living in a camper trailer this is a great way to practice your skills in the unknown and strengthening yourself as a person.
For backpacking, you don’t need anything other than your personal belongings and possibly some money for public transport if you go somewhere further away from your residence. Although you can save here if you hitchhike. Also, you do not have to give a lot of money to travel agencies, you are your own agency. As for food, you eat much more modestly, fast food or sandwiches, which will significantly save you money compared to the classic way of traveling, there are no hotel delicacies and amenities. Although, there are no rules and it depends on the length of travel ways of traveling.
One of the best things about backpacking is the absolute freedom to move where you want and how much you want. There are no limits, haste, and pressure here because you plan your time the way you want.
Like everything in life and backpacking has its advantages and disadvantages. If you deal with it then you certainly accept the disadvantages of this way of traveling but where there is love for something then you see only the good! In any case, we show you what are the challenges if you are planning a backpacking trip.
Dealing with discomfort
When you decide to backpack you need to be aware that you will have to suffer something as well. There are no comfortable hotels and gastronomic specialties, in most cases you sleep in a room, dormitory, or in nature on some stone or grass. But that is the charm, isn’t it?
Being separated from your loved ones
Despite the development of a technique where we can hear each other from any part of the world, the absence of your loved ones is still felt especially if you are on long backpacking.
Since there is not much planning in backpacking and everything happens mostly spontaneously, there is a greater chance that you will encounter some unexpected circumstances that need to be crossed. Closed roads, riots in the city, lack of food, these are all things that can realistically happen. But it is precisely this that exercises our ability to cope, which makes backpacking very attractive.
We bring you a list of what is necessary to make backpacking as successful as possible.
- Hiking boots or shoes
- Sleeping bag
- Lying mat
- Kitchen supplies
- Enough food
- Water bottles and water-treatment supplies
- Appropriate clothing
- Emergency and hygiene supplies
- Small knife
- Sun protection
- Zippo lighter
- Gps device
You can find a comprehensive offer of the best equipment at CAMPMOR.
The best destinations for Backpacking
Destinations for nature lovers
Before you go you will have to choose one or more destinations depending on your preferences. We bring you the most popular suggestions on where to go, for nature lovers and those other curious city explorers.
Arizona is a favorite destination for USA backpackers but is becoming an increasingly popular international destination for this type of travel. You will be envied by the unique landscape of Arizona with the Grand Canyon. Read everything you need to know about backpacking in Arizona here.
New Zealand is a fantastic destination for those who love a complete fusion with nature. Admittedly, the destination is far away and you will need a lot of organization and preparation, but it will be an experience of a lifetime. Read the instructions for backpacking at this destination on Nomadic Matt.
Here is a suggestion for a lesser-known but beautiful destination. The mountains and the national park called Prokletije in Montenegro will take your breath away. This gem of nature in the northeast of Montenegro hides many beautiful lakes, mineral water springs, a rich forest with a rainforest character that makes it a favorite destination among mountaineers in the region. Meet this destination here.
Destinations for city explorers
London, United Kingdom
London is generally known as a favorite destination for backpackers. In this city, you can see people with backpacks and a map in their hands on almost every street. London is so big and rich that you never get bored of exploring it. Its disadvantage is that it is quite expensive. Find more here.
For those who don’t like the hustle and bustle of metropolis then Tallinn in Estonia is the right choice. This picturesque city is not big and offers a lot to see. It is also not as expensive as London and offers a wide range of accommodation. Find more.
Buenos Aires, Argentina
Here it is another exciting city with a large pound of hostels and other accommodation for backpackers. Apart from the fact that you will not need a lot of money (not counting the transport ticket if you come from the USA, Europe or Asia), you will get acquainted with the rich history and beauties of the capital of Argentina. You can find more detailed instructions and tips on the website Backpacking in South America.
A few tips at the end
Before you go we advise you to make a road map to keep surprises to a minimum. Always estimate how much food, money, and equipment you need depending on the length of the trip and always bring a surplus. If you are backpacking for the first time try not to go alone but in a group to learn from others. And lastly, keep in mind, be careful when using hitchhiking, the world isn’t always well-intentioned.
Write to us about your backpacking experiences in the comments below or send us a story. Find more.