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Choosing a travel backpack is just the beginning of your travel adventure. Get all information you require to make it a success…

Travel Planning


Travel Preparation

for your

The Journey

Packing Lists

Choosing a Backpack

Selecting a travel backpack will probably be the most important purchase you will make for your trip. There are a variety of styles to choose from and some important things to consider when buying one.

The capacity of backpacks is measured in cubic litres, with 60-75 litres being the most popular for extended budget travel trips. Some backpack brands also have frame sizes ranging from small to extra-large with most men choosing ‘large’ and women a ‘medium’ size. A simple guide is to make your personal choice based on what feels comfortable for your height and body shape.

Always travel with a backpack with an internal frame. After that you have the broad choice of a top or front loading pack. This is personal preference and the top loading is a popular style. From experience though, I would always recommend a pack with a zipped panel for front loading because you can gain quick, easy access to the entire contents.

Types of Backpacks


Hybrid backpack
  • Top loading
  • Attached daypack
  • Front panel access

Travel backpack
  • Front loading
  • Broader design
  • Attached daypack

Hiking backpack
  • Top loading
  • Tall, narrow design
  • No attached daypack

A typical backpacking adventure really tests a pack’s durability. It gets thrown around, dirty, dusty and exposed to all kinds of weather. Straps and zips are the most critical features that are the most prone to tearing or failing. Look for double stitching, quality metal zippers and sturdy buckles. Being partially waterproof or having an external rain cover helps.

With a correctly fitted backpack, most of the weight is carried on your hips rather than shoulders. Accordingly, it is very important to have a padded hip belt that will make supporting that weight more comfortable. A well contoured and padding back helps distribute weight evenly and using a chest strap makes walking uphill easier.

If each compartment of the backpack has two zippers they can be locked together with a small padlock. For additional security, you can purchase a metal mesh that wraps around the pack and is secured at the top. Whatever your precautions always ensure that your most valuable items are carried with you in a small daypack.

Backpack Parts

Backpack components

Top Choice

Osprey Atmos 65 AG Backpack

One of the best rated and most popular backpacks for adventure travel is the Osprey Atmos 65 AG Backpack. The 'AG' is for 'Anti-Gravity', a unique design that suspends the entire back panel and hip belt. This spreads the load and alleviates common hot spots or pressure points.

Aside from the AG suspension, this backpack is well ventilated which makes it prefect for travelling warmer climates. Backpackers also love the dedicated sleeping bag compartment, trekking pole attachment and variety of user-friendly zippered and slip pockets.

Click here for specification and a full review of the Osprey Atmos 65 AG Backpack.