When I Pack Only a Backpack for a 13-Day Vacation

I have to admit that my recent between-semesters vacation felt a lot longer than 13 days – in a good way. So much so that I didn’t even realize I was gone less than two weeks until just now when I counted up the days on my calendar. So maybe it’s not so impressive after all that I packed only a backpack for 13 days . . . but, then again, the real point of this post is multi-faceted: 1. to have you be impressed that I’ve graduated from being the kid with a suitcase at a sleepover, to this 2. to help you out if you ever want to do the same, and 3. to show you some pictures from my vacation. Just being honest! 🙂

First of all, let me just say that The Word of My Life for the past month has been Flexibility. Oy. I thought I was okay with that word, but it turns out I’m really, really not. Vacation plans, much less life plans, must have changed at least 28 times. I was stressed out and panicky (really, really stressed out and panicky) while it was all happening, but I’m very happy with the way everything’s turned out now.

I found a knock-off North Face backpack at the local mall, and it’s the one I used on this vacation. It was so, so, so unbelievably great and helpful because I was able to magically squish everything I wanted to bring inside. And while the backpack did grow in size, it didn’t turn into a gigantic square box on my back the way my old backpack did. Hallelujah!

So here you have it – my packing list (for the most part):

-4 pairs of shorts
-1 pair of jeans
-7 shirts
-2 dresses
-Toiletries (as many travel-sized ones as possible)

I would not say that I packed “light” considering that I brought an entire week’s worth of clothes, not counting dresses. Looking back, though, I’d say that I’m pretty happy about the items and number of items that I brought with me. Maybe I could have made do with 5 or 6 shirts and only 1 dress. But then again, a) I do like variety, b) I was vacationing around Southeast Asia AKA the land of nonstop sweating, and c) I spent a lot of time on buses to get from one destination to the next (I don’t like to re-wear my travel clothes too much).

These are the places I ended up going: Bangkok, Khon Kaen, Udon Thani, Ban Chiang, Nong Khai, Laos, Phitsanulok, and Sukhothai.


-I stayed in Bangkok only as a departure and return destination, not really for funzies.
-I’d been wanting to travel around Isaan, the northeastern region of Thailand, as its amazing cuisine, relaxed pace of life, and abundance of villages is appealing to me. Hence the time spent in Khon Kaen, Udon Thani, and Ban Chiang.
-Nong Khai (a border town) and Laos happened due to a recent change in workplace, so I needed to make a visa run.
-My original plan (#1-27 out of 28, mind you) was to make it to Chiang Mai and Chiang Rai as well. But sadly (!), this didn’t happen. The north is very far from where I live and almost just as far from Isaan, so with the constant change in travel plans knocking down my number of vacation days bit by bit, getting to the north just wasn’t able to happen this time. I traveled to Phitsanulok and Sukhothai instead (which were awesome!) and am planning to head north at another point this semester.

 So, let’s get on with the photos!


Hope you enjoyed that peek into my vacation! I’ll be back soon with my regular two-a-week postings. Have a great Friday!


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