We just returned from a 15 day trip to Spain, Portugal, and Morocco with Contiki! The climates were similar in each city throughout the trip, hot during the day and cool at night, ranging from 52 – 97 degrees F (11 – 36 C). It was important to not only be mindful of the weather, but also how to dress respectfully while visiting certain cities and sites.
Between the two of us, we packed one 21″ roller carry-on, a duffel bag, and 2 daypacks for ease of use day to day. I managed to fit all my stuff into my suitcase and even had space for Jacob’s shirts and gifts for the journey back.
Here’s what went into our bags and a few additions of what we wish we brought instead.
What to Pack for Morocco, Spain, and Portugal (15 Days in a Carry on in Fall)
CLOTHES FOR HER:
A. Plain White V-neck Tees x 2
B. Black or Dark Gray V-neck Tees x 2
C. Sleeveless V-neck Blouse (in yellow)
D. Sleeveless White Blouse
E. White Button Up – mine is Exofficio’s BugsAway and repels bugs!
F. Chambray Boyfriend Shirt
G. 3/4 Sleeve Top (from GoldenTote)
H. Black Racerback Tank
I. Light Hoodie – this kept me covered and extra cool in Morocco out in the sun. The sol cool fabric has technology that attaches xylitol to the fibers that creates a cooling sensation and reduces the skin’s surface temperature up to 5 degrees. It is also rated UPF 50+.
J. Light & Warm Jacket – this one also doubled as my travel pillow, since it packs down into a pocket.
K. Vegan Leather Jacket
L. Blue Cardigan (from GoldenTote)
M. Gray Sailor Shorts
N. Black Shorts
O. Pants x 2-3 – If you meet me in person, most likely you’ll see me wearing these. They are the most comfortable pants that don’t make you look slouchy. I have them in almost every color. I brought 2 in denim gray and yellow classic for this trip. If they don’t have the color you want now, they switch them out seasonally. Let me warn you.. if you try them, you may never want to wear other pants again. I also bought a pair of baggy Morrocan pants, but if you don’t plan on buying any on your trip, bring 3. Right now, if you sign up for their email, you can get $10 off your first purchase!
P. Printed Sleeveless Tunic (from GoldenTote)
Q. Printed Maxi Dress
R. Jumpsuit – wide leg pleated jumpsuit in red. It was really comfortable in the heat.
S. Maxi Skirt Dress – the skirt comes off so you can go casual or formal.
T. Elastic Belt – they pack up flat and easy. Mine has gold studs and is technically not reversible, but I used it as a reversible belt.
U. Sunglasses – bring a cheaper pair when you travel since you may damage or lose them. These ones are very similar to the ones I have but are on sale for $6.50.
V. Packable Felt Hat – I was planning on buying one in Spain or Portugal, so I didn’t pack one, but I didn’t find any that I liked. It’s always good to have a good hat to keep the sun off your face since there are many long days out in the sun.
W. Double Sided Pashmina Scarf – It’s red on one side and gold on the other. Plus, it also doubles as a blanket when it’s freezing on the plane.
X. Swimsuit – There were 3 hotels we stayed at with pools.
Y. Suede Textile Boots These got the most compliments out of any item I’ve brought on this trip. They are from TOMS who are known for their iconic shoe that gives a pair to a child in need when you buy a pair. I recently discovered they have many styles of shoes, sunglasses, and bags that pay it forward in different ways.
Z. Flip Flops – These are made out of yoga mats and are the most comfortable pair of flip flops you will find. I can walk around all day in them.
AA. Dressy Sandals – I am currently on the hunt for a pair of dressier sandals that are just as comfortable as my flip flops above though I know it’s going to be quite the challenge. If you know of any, please let me know!
BB. Converses – I didn’t pack these, but it would have been nice to have another pair of casual walking shoes.
CC. Gold Sandals / Heels – We had a few nicer dinners and clubbing nights where these came in handy.
EE. Black Leggings – these are good to throw on under shorts or skirts when cold. Also, I wore them when we were going out in Morocco to cover up and avoid unwanted attention.
FF. Socks x 5
GG. ExOfficio Bikini Briefs x 3 – Their slogan is “17 Countries. 6 Weeks. And One Pair of Award-Winning Underwear. Okay, Maybe Two.” I could have fit in more underwear, but we really wanted to test out their limits. Turns out they are high-performance, low-maintenance, and can dry in 2-4 hours. It was good to have 3, since some nights we got back late, and I was too lazy to wash my underwear.
HH. Bras x 3
*Rain Jacket (optional) – I checked the forecast, and there were a few rainy days, but I didn’t really end up wearing it. This one is lightweight.
II. Canon 5D Mark III + Batteries + Charger + Canon 35mm 1.4 L Lens – We regretted not bringing our 70-200 for the monkeys in Gibraltar, but later decided it wasn’t worth the trouble carrying the extra weight for one day.
JJ. Canon G7X + Batteries + Charger – this is our vlogging camera
KK. GorillaPod Focus + Ballhead X
LL. Phone + Charger + Travel Case
MM. MacBook + Case + Charger
NN. Power Converter + Adapter – many of our hotels only had up to 2 outlets, so it’s good to a space to charge all your devices.
OO. Portable Charger: Anker Astro Mini
TRAVEL BAGS & PACKING ORGANIZERS:
PP. REI Flash 18 Daypack
QQ. Samsonite 21″ Spinner
RR. 3-1-1 Clear Toiletry Bag meets TSA guidelines
SS. Packing Cubes x 3 from Lewis N Clark, Tom Bihn, & Eagle Creek)
TT. Travel Laundry Stuff Sack (separates the clean and dirty clothes)
UU. GoToob Travel Bottles
TOILETRY BAG (not pictured above)
- Toothbrush + Toothpaste + Floss
- Face Wash Powder – doesn’t take up space in our liquids toiletry bag
- Conditioner (in my GoToob, many hotels we stayed at didn’t have any)
- Immodium – 1/3 of our group felt sick after the first meal in Morocco, including me.
- Emergen-C or Vitamin C tablets – it’s good to give your immune system a boost when you’re on a coach and plane for many of the days with other sick people.
- Dramamine / Motion Relief Bands if you’re prone to getting seasick while traveling by ferry.
- Wipes and Tissue to Go – A lot of bathrooms in Morocco had no toilet paper.
- Hand Sanitizer on the Go – I like these alcohol free ones for babies that don’t dry up your hands as much.
- First Aid Kit
- Hair Products
- Make Up
- Travel Laundry Detergent
- Grayl Water Filter – great since you can’t drink Morocco’s tap or even use it for brushing your teeth without a filter. See our full review here
- Collapsible Water Bottle
DOCUMENTS (not pictured above)
- Slim Travel Wallet
TRAVEL BAGS FOR HIM (not pictured above)
- Carry-on Laptop Backpack by Osprey
- Golla Weekend Bag
- ElectroLight Daypack that packs down as small as a fist.
- Space Saver Bags
CLOTHES FOR HIM (not pictured above)
- Light Hoodie – Jacob has the men’s version of mine, and we are both loving them.
- Chukka Boots – TOMS Dark Earth Herringbone Leather Chukka Boots
- ExOfficio Boxer Briefs x 3
- V-neck Tees x 2- these are his favorite that he owns in different colors.
- Jeans x 2
- Shorts x 2
- Athletic Shorts
- Casual Button Down Shirts x 2
- Dressy Button Down Shirts x 2 – these shirts are comfortable and stay cool and wrinkle-free
- Long Sleeve Henleys x 3
- Patagonia Capilene x 2
- Swim Shorts
- Light Jacket
- Rain Coat
- Socks x 14
- Tennis Shoes
- Leather Flip Flips
GIFTS TO FIT IN ON THE WAY BACK:
- Five 8.5 oz Bottles of Olive Oil
- Four 2 oz bottles of argan cream
- Two 2 oz bottles of argan oil
- Baggy Moroccan Pants
*I didn’t even have to expand my carry on bag, but did need to check it in since the all the argan oil and olive oil exceeded the liquids limit.
If you’re going on the 15-day Spain, Portugal, and Morocco Contiki trip, here are extra packing tips specific to this trip:
- When visiting cathedrals and churches, you must have your shoulders covered and skirts / shorts down to your knees.
- When visiting mosques, you need to cover down to your wrists and ankles. We didn’t end up going inside any mosques on our tour.
- Marrakesh, Tangier, and Fez all seemed to have enough tourists that wore whatever they wanted. I covered up as much as possible to avoid unwanted attention. Even if you’re traveling with a group of guys, you may still get harassed.
- How people dress depends on the trip and location. Our New Zealand trip was very casual, but on this trip, people were dressing up to go out to dinners, bars, and clubs. You might want to consider packing dressier clothes.
- Bring something red and black to wear on Flamenco Night (it’s a paid optional dinner)
- There is a Moroccan Belly Dancing Dinner (paid optional) where people bought Moroccan attire to wear.
- Bring enough cash to tip your tour guide, driver, and local guides. The recommended amount is 2 euros per day per staff. In addition to our main tour guide and driver, there was one local guide in Morocco that stayed with us for 5 days and a local guide in Fez that took you through the Medina. That adds up to a total of at least 72 euros (144 for both Jacob and I).
What types of layering pieces do you like to wear? Have you made any recent travel gear purchases that you’re completely in love with?