July travel essentials – the round-up

When you read this, I’ll finally be in Cambodia – after so long planning, dreaming and talking about it, I can’t quite believe that we’re so close to Angkor Wat.

Girl in a field with a suitcase - my travel essentials for the month, from beauty, books and fashion to my latest suitcase must-haves

Which also means we have another long flight ahead – I’m hoping that as we survived a similar trip to Burma last year, we will manage this one without too much difficulty too… though I’m stocking up on entertainment.

So here are my July travel essentials and additions to my packing lists this month. Keep an eye on my Facebook and Instagram and you might see some of it in action…

Fashion and beauty
I seem to have been buying bits and pieces for Cambodia for months now – lightweight trousers from Matalan for me and from H&M for Minnie earlier this year, although I’ve had less luck replacing some of my vest tops after an attack of moths.

I know I’ll need to cover up when I’m visiting temples especially so along with the lightweight shirt I got in Gap last year, I found this Geo embroidered peasant blouse in the sale – it’s a little bit lower cut than I’d expected but it’s lightweight, so should work to throw on over a vest.

Top from Gap, T-shirt from M&S and new FitFlops - some of my fashion travel essentials for July

And this M&S foil print split sleeve T-shirt is pretty lightweight too, so while I probably won’t wear it sightseeing, it should be good if I fancy smartening up a bit more in the evenings. Plus my third pair of Lulu Shimmersuede FitFlops – I really do live in these until they wear out.

I’ve been working with John Lewis this month too on my list of some of the best travel essentials for long-haul flights with young kids, including babies – and along with sending over some products which I’ve listed in travel essentials below, I’ve added a few new items to Minnie’s holiday wardrobe including some funky sunglasses, a new floatsuit and snuggly star towel dress plus another pair of Clarks Star Games sandals. I think this might be about our eighth pair – SO useful.

My daughter in star towel dress and star games sandals from John Lewis - some of my July travel essentials

And as ever, we’re not going near the sun without some Ultrasun – including some new SPF50+ anti-pigmentation body cream from the range along with my Glimmer favourite.

Travel essentials
Two weeks in Cambodia means I want to be prepared – I’ve upgraded my existing first aid with a Little Life family first aid kit and am swapping Minnie’s usual nightlight for the much more packable Pabobo Super Nomade nightlight which also has a long-life battery and charges by USB. Wish I’d discovered this years ago, rather than search desperately for plug sockets…

Then loads of activities for that 11-hour flight – the Janod Princess Magnetibook is a big hit and should stop me having to pick up loads of dropped odds and ends off the floor, plus we’ve got a new dinosaur-themed Galt Water Magic pad, all courtesy of John Lewis.

As Minnie is five, and less likely to decorate the plane by accident, there’s some normal colouring too: a Go Jetters, Go Colour colouring book and Crayola Supertips washable pens – well, better safe than sorry – along with a Little Children’s Puzzle Pad, a new addition to the Usborne range. Plus magazines and stickers, naturally – Sofia the First sticker scenes book, as the princess is currently flavour of the month. also sent me a Little Children’s Travel activity book which we’ve tried before and loved, along with a little portable safe which could well come in handy, as part of their #safetravels campaign.

Needless to say, our Kids Fly Legs up hammock and inflatable Bubblebum booster seat are coming with us too.

The activity books aren’t the only ones we’re packing either – I’ve got my Lonely Planet Cambodia guide book to go with the trip notes from Stubborn Mule who are arranging our trip. And for Minnie, the Leap and Hop Cambodia book, which is a fantastic mix of trip journal, activity book and guide.

Aimed at slightly older children, I’d read some great reviews of the range by bloggers in the Middle East and Far East particularly: at the moment, they’re a little tricky to get in the UK, although you can find them on Amazon, so I was so excited to be sent one for review. Angkor Wat and the temples have been on my travel wishlist for ages and I’d love my daughter to enjoy herself too – at five, I’m not daft enough to think she’ll appreciate them in the same way as an adult, but making an adventure of it, including a mini treasure hunt will go a long way.

Lonely Planet's Cambodia guide, the Leap and Hop Cambodia book and Family London - some of the books in this month's travel essentials list

A bit of light reading for both of us as well – The Octonauts Explore the Great Big Ocean which has some fun glow-in-the-dark pages (useful if they dim the plane’s lights!) and I’ve also discovered The Northminster Mysteries books, perfect if you’re a historical crime fiction fan like me.  The Butchered Man is the first, but I’ve got all five on my Kindle.

I’ve also been given Elena Ferrante’s My Brilliant Friend for my own birthday: it might transport me to Naples rather than Cambodia, but I’ve had so many recommendations, I’m hoping for some time to sit and read too.

And because it’s not ALL about Cambodia (just mostly), some inspiration for the rest of the summer with the new Family London guide. Divided into seven sections, there are tips on everything from parks and playgrounds to cafes and restaurants, via museums, indoor options, days out and a whole teenage section.

Even after years living in the city, including all of my daughter’s life, there are still plenty of suggestions that we haven’t ticked off and a few I’ve not even come across before. The Grand Days Out may not surprise anyone, focusing on some of the main attractions (although all very much worth visiting) but with smaller zoos and unexpected green spaces included, there are some great ideas whether you live here or are visiting.

Have a great summer!


Disclosure: All opinions remain my own for any products mentioned, including those sent for review. This post contains some affiliate links: any purchases you make are unaffected but I may receive a few pennies back – all are products and retailers I’ve personally tried or recommend.

Main image courtesy Pixabay, fashion product images courtesy of the retailer, all others copyright MummyTravels