So, currently I am on a road trip in Death Valley! Being a California-native, there is so much to see and experience all up and down the state, but most of it requires a car and at least 5-hour drives. But that’s part of the fun! In order to make the most of this time, I’ve rounded up some things I cannot live without on a road trip.
1. A catchy CD
Good music can make or break long hours in the car. And it really, really helps if the music is catchy too. Something about having a full-on car jam session with everyone belting at the top of their lungs breaks up the long hours of sitting and keeps everyone in a decently pleasant mood. Scour the iTunes Top Charts and pick your favorites to create your own mixtape for the road!
2. Trail mix…or snacks of choice, but trail mix is my preferred choice 😉
No one likes hangry people, and I am the first to admit I get really irritable when I’m hungry. Though I’m definitely not proud of this trait, I know this about myself and spending so much time driving can make it easy for a person to forget to refuel. Trail mix is the perfect snack because it’s nutritionally packed and delicious (not to mention addicting!!). I’m a HUGE fan of the Whole Foods 365 Everyday Trail Mixes — they’ve got dozens of combinations that are sure to suit everyone’s tastes — with my absolute favorite being Paris Beret (with peanuts, almonds, dried raspberries, and dark chocolate!).
3. A camera
I’ve become so accustom to people whipping out their iPhones to capture life’s moments, and truth be told, the iPhone is a handy tool that is perfect for quick photo-ops. But, I am a full believer in the power of a real camera, even a small handheld camera for truly taking and saving pictures. Road trips tend to have gorgeous viewpoints that deserve higher quality photos. I personally love Canon’s PowerShots for an affordable upgraded camera or for something a little more complex, a Canon Rebel.
4. A deck of cards
Cards are so underrated. If you’re stuck in a diner in the middle of nowhere or at your hotel and the TV won’t work (both totally
possible likely), a deck of cards is a simple way to bring back some camaraderie and entertainment. My family absolutely loveees playing the game of Hearts. And it brings out our competitive side! We’ve definitely made some killer memories playing on our trips.
5. Hand sanitizer or wipes
Breaks along the road often mean crummy gas station bathrooms or port-a-potties, both of which sometimes don’t have soap or a sink. Something to clean yourself up with can be helpful regardless (See: spilling coffee all over the car accidentally), but especially just to be prepared when the bathrooms aren’t in prime state.
6. Reading material
This can be in the form of old magazines you’ve collected and haven’t had the time to read or a good book! I take part in both. For road trip book recommendations, my favorite is Jack Kerouac’s On the Road (his other novels are excellent too!), which follows Kerouac and crew as they trek across America and is tinged with nostalgia, hope, and beautiful writing that will encourage you to wield a highlighter just to mark your favorite parts because trust me, it’s quotable.
Comment below what you have to bring when you road trip!