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The Big Trip: The Ultimate Caravan Packing List

The aim of our big trip was to leave the mod cons of normal life behind in an attempt to live simply for a while. At first this seemed simple enough to do, but in reality it was actually quite tricky. There are still so many things we needed (or shall I say wanted) to pack to ensure we had a comfortable and safe driving experience. Nonetheless, we managed in the end.

Here’s our list of what we packed to equip our caravan for our Aussie driving adventure.

Essential items

• 80 litres of drinking water stored in 4 x 20-litre jerry cans.
• A first-aid kit.
• Satellite phone.
Portable solar panels.
• Power inverter.

Off-road items

• Snatch straps, tree trunk protector, snatch block and bow shackles.
• Air compressor, tyre deflator and tyre repair kit.
• Recovery tracks, exhaust and hydraulic jacks.
• Shovel.
• Dual battery system.

Camping items (for overnight off-road adventures)

• Tent (we recommend the BlackWolf Turbo tent).
• Ensuite tent.
• Stretcher beds.
• Camp shower.
• Portable toilet.
• 2-burner stove.
• 12V lighting.
Caravan awning.
• Car fridge.
• Storage drawers.
• Camp chairs and table.
• Laundry bucket.
• Torches.

A few items ready to pack

Car/van maintenance

• Spare wheels – 1 x van spare, 2 x car spares.
• Van wheel bearing spares and grease.
• Jumper leads.
• Multimeter.
• Tools including quarter-inch socket set and spanners.
• Spare belts (alternator and A/C).
• Engine oil and radiator coolant.
• Car repair manual.
• Tie downs.

Cooking and kitchen items

• Weber baby Q.
Gas bottles.
• Microwave.
• Set of saucepans, frypans and mixing bowls.
• Jars and Tupperware containers (to store leftovers).
• Plastic wine glasses and cups.
• Cutlery/dining sets.

Non-essential items

• Nespresso coffee machine (but you can indulge!)
• Laptop.
• Surfboard.
• Snorkelling gear.

In hindsight…

It’s amazing how much you think you need before embarking on a 10-month road trip and what you actually come to use on a daily basis. Now that we’ve been on the road for a while we’ve found some of the items we’ve packed completely unnecessary – namely the microwave and coffee machine. Since we’ve been camping at unpowered sites, electronic luxuries such as these have sat unused under the bed the majority of the time.

What has proved to be incredibly useful, however, is the jerry can water storage and tap system that Drew created in the back of the car – we can fill up our drink bottles with clean, fresh drinking water wherever we are.

Drew and Court are a Melbourne couple who are travelling around Australia for the next 10 months. They’ll be writing about their experiences for Without a Hitch, giving us the real story of life on the road.

Make sure you Sign Up to the Without A Hitch newsletter to keep up to date with Drew & Court on their travels or join the conversation on the Without A Hitch Facebook Page.

In their next article, Drew & Court will explain how they went about choosing what food to take with them.

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