8 Items To Pack For a Super Active Summer Vacation

8 Items To Pack For a Super Active Summer Vacation

Written by Patrick Gensel on

Patrick Gensel is a world-roaming, visual storyteller with a special place in his heart for action sports and the natural world. No matter where Patrick is, you can always find him sharing his stories on his website and Twitter

Make sure you’re prepared for all of your summer vacation activities by packing these 8 must-have items for your trip.

If you’re planning on taking an adventurous summer trip, it’s time to start thinking about packing. And if you’re like me, your trip will more than likely include a multitude of activities, and you’ll have to pack accordingly. To help ease your packing stress, I’m sharing what I consider to be eight of the most important items you can put in your bag.


It may seem obvious, but you'd be surprised how easy it is to forget your bathing suit. Many summer travel activities will be reliant on having swimwear. If you plan on going to the beach or a secluded swimming hole, basic swimwear will be fine, but if you plan on doing something sporty, like kayaking or scuba diving, you may need more specialized water gear. Before you pack, check with your guide or the company you’re booking these activities through to find out what is provided and what you may need to bring. Pack your swimsuit and other accessories in a Pack-It Specter Kit that will keep them organized and keep your dry items separate when you’re done.


The summer sun can be brutal on your skin, especially if you’re spending most of your days outside—so it’s important to protect yourself. Pack broad-spectrum sunscreen (with an SPF of at least 30), and make sure that it’s waterproof, so it’ll protect you even when you’re sweating or in the water. Keep your sunscreen and other toiletries organized in the anti-microbial Pack-It Sport™ Wallaby. Apply it liberally to your skin and reapply every two hours.


It’s important to protect not only your skin, but also your eyes. Whether you’re in direct sunlight or its an overcast day, sunglasses will keep you from squinting and protect your eyes from damaging UV light. I like to keep a pair packed in my travel bag at all times, so I always have them when the need arises.

Waterproof Action Camera

You want to capture memories of your summer adventure, right? Your best bet for doing so is using a camera that takes good videos and photos and can also withstand a beating. Bring a waterproof action camera, like a GoPro Hero, and keep it—along with chargers and other accessories—safe in a Pack-It Specter™ eCube L.

Dry Bag

Rather than worry about where to leave your valuables when you participate in watersports or other water activities, pack a dry bag and bring them with you. The sealable, watertight bag is often used in watersports to keep valuables, electronics, and clothing dry during a day on the water. Not going the water route? The dry bag can also protect your belongings from sand, dirt, and any other messy elements that you encounter in your adventures.

First Aid Kit

Taking care of yourself while you travel should be priority number one. A first aid kit can go a long way in terms of making you more comfortable and potentially even saving your life if you can't get to a hospital immediately.

Water Bottle

Regardless of the vacation activities that you have planned, you’ll need to stay hydrated, especially during the summer. Rather than repeatedly purchasing bottled water (talk about a money drain!), pack your favorite reusable water bottle. Personally, I never leave home without my Nalgene bottle. Just don’t forget to fill it with fresh water.


If you adventure hard, like many do, you may not come home each day until after dark. So be sure to bring along some sort of light source. You could always bring a flashlight, but I like using headlamps because they allow me to be hands-free. If you pack one, don’t forget spare batteries.

There are many types of summer adventure activities that may require more specialized items, but these eight are the things that I find most useful for all summer adventure trips, and I hope they help streamline your summer packing, too. For even more tips, check out this ultimate packing list.

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