- Travel broadens the mind.
- Travel boosts our self-confidence and helps us to believe in ourselves again.
As I travel and learn I want to bring the details of the world to you as I discover them and bring you the benefit of my knowledge from five years of travelling solo.
I can talk for hours about the highs and lows of backpacking and why you should stay in a hostel, so click on the links below to read more about specific accommodation, my experiences or travel suggestions or travel gear that you should pack.
There are links to my favourite pieces of kit and links to the good and the bad of hostel life. If you want to order something via my site I might occasionally receive a small commission but you can be sure that I will only recommend something that I am convinced will work and usually that I use myself.
I would love to answer any questions that you might have about any region that I have travelled to.
If you want to know more about backpacking or hostel life then send me an email (email@example.com) – and if I can’t help you, in the majority of cases I will know somebody who can.
Maybe I can also inspire you to visit some of the wonderful places that I have been to or just to follow some of the other travel bloggers who are out there, exploring in your behalf.
Don’t forget to scroll to the bottom of the page for the quick links to useful sites.
Hostels range from the cheap and cheerful to a more luxurious ‘glamping’ experience with accommodation in yurts or tents. Some hostels are downright dirty but most are bright and airy with cool artwork which is often painted by travellers as they pass through.
You can choose between party hostels where the action and interaction is non-stop or more tranquil places where lazing around quietly in hammocks is the norm.
Some include breakfast in the price and most have well equipped kitchens so that you can cater for yourself. Others come complete with cafes or restaurants attached and nearly all have a bar or at least a fridge stocked with beer and soft drinks for guests’ use.
Whilst dormitories with bunk beds are the cheapest nightly option, more and more hostels are catering for couples or singles who want a bit of privacy in a private room. Many establishments offer at least one female only dormitory and many dorms now have en suite bathrooms.
Hotels offer a different experience to hostels, but like hostels they come in all shapes sizes and price ranges. There are the large international chains and the small, friendly, family run establishments. They usually have a dining room and rooms are more often or not en suite.
Even if you are travelling on a budget don’t dismiss hotels because they often have competitive rates; especially if you ‘re sharing a room with a friend. They can offer an oasis of calm if you fall ill on your travels and you simply can’t face sharing a bathroom with other guests or if you need to rest uninterrupted in bed all day.
Whilst you obviously don’t have to interact with other travellers in hostels if you don’t want to, the pressure comes right off you in a hotel. You can dine alone, sit in the lounge with your computer or book or retire to your bedroom (usually containing a television) and lock the world out.
If nothing else, travelling with a backpack has taught me to pare down my equipment and my possessions to the minimum.
There are some things that I can’t do without, some are luxuries that I talk myself into needing and other things are quickly discarded along the way as they become redundant and I find they never see the light of day.
First and foremost you need a bag. This can make or break you. You then need some form of security system and the tools of your trade if you are working on the road.
Clothing and footwear suitable for the weather and the location and toiletries and medicines also need to be considered.
Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links and/or references to our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on or make a purchase using these links.
Scarlet Jones Travels is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com
Click on the links below for recommended products and services. I use or have used the majority of these myself.
You can buy almost anything from Amazon. Simply click on the image of the backpack and access the site. Whilst you might not need a backpack right now, you can navigate from there to any page on the Amazon site. Any purchases made will earn me a small commission and enable me to continue bringing you the stories that you love.
TRAVEL INSURANCE from ALPHA TRAVEL INSURANCE. I use this company myself for my own backpacker travel insurance. Alpha Travel Insurance are based in the UK.
LONELY PLANET FOR ALL OF YOUR GUIDE BOOKS. I am a sucker for guide books, even buying books for places that I will possibly never visit/ When I travel I usually purchase and download an ebook. Not quite so convenient as a paper copy but it’s all about the weight when you backpack and they are great for travel planning.
SKYSCANNER FOR YOUR FLIGHTS. I adore Skyscanner. Their search function is better than the television and can keep my occupied for hours on end. Book your flight via this link and I will earn a tiny little bit of commission
Transparency statement: Sometimes I am lucky enough to receive free accommodation or a discounted travel experience, but I will always make it quite clear when I do so. I can promise you that I will never agree to write a positive report in exchange for an incentive. All opinions are my own and are unbiased.