The travel kit list: sustainable gear for winter city breaks

Whether you’re planning a weekend getaway or a week-long trip, we round up the essentials for your next urban adventure.

By Angela Locatelli
Published 24 Sept 2022, 06:03 BST
Clockwise from top left: Sony RX100 VII Compact Camera; DK Eyewitness Like A Local guidebook series; ...

Clockwise from top left: Sony RX100 VII Compact Camera; DK Eyewitness Like A Local guidebook series; Eastpak Transverz M Suitcase; Bellroy Sling Mini Cross-Body Bag.

Photograph by National Geographic Traveller UK

1. Sony RX100 VII Compact Camera 

Widely seen as one of the best cameras of its class, this award-winning point-and-shoot is a safe bet for discerning photographers. Standout features include a long battery life, broad zoom range and fast-tracking autofocus, all packed into a pocket-sized body. While the pro-level still and video performance comes with a hefty price tag, this camera delivers exceptional images in low-light or indoor settings. £1,150. 

2. DK Eyewitness Like a Local guidebook series 

Curated by locals, these guides offer an intimate perspective on some of the world’s coolest cities, uncovering community favourites and neighbourhood haunts. Pick one up if you’re a returning visitor or simply want to explore beyond the big-hitting attractions. Like a Local is a new series launched in 2021, with more titles in the works. £12.99.

3. Bellroy Sling Mini cross-body bag

Keep your essentials in close reach with the Sling Mini, a go-to for museum visits or a fast-paced night out. Its small body comes with a surprising 4L storage capacity (enough to fit your water bottle, travel umbrella, wallet and more), but an expandable side gusset keeps the bag slim when the load is light. Internal divisions, including a soft-lined sunglasses pouch, key clip and mesh pockets, ensure minimal rummaging. £79.

4. Eastpak Transverz M Suitcase

Much like the company’s iconic backpacks, the Transverz softshell luggage collection is light, durable and convenient. Top and side straps, a retractable handle and wheels make these trolleys easy to carry, while a water-resistant fabric and built-in TSA lock give you peace of mind when you’re on the go. Available in three sizes, the medium is ideal for a week-long break, with double-deck compartments and compression strips to keep your things organised. £145.

Clockwise from top left: Bird Athene Sunglasses; Happy Ears Ocean Plastic Earplugs; Tropicfeel Dune Sneakers; Finisterre Stormbird Waterproof Jacket.

Photograph by National Geographic Traveller UK

5. Bird Athene sunglasses  

Classic and understated, these sunglasses are the perfect sidekick for a big-city break, with adjustable temple ends and sprung hinges making for a comfortable wear. They’re made with sustainable materials, too: the frames are crafted from biodegradable bio-acetate and come in eco-cork cases. For every pair sold, Bird — the UK’s first eyewear brand to have received a B Corp Certification — distributes solar-powered lamps to remote communities in Malawi and Zambia. £79. 

6. Happy Ears Ocean Plastic earplugs

The first earplug range sourced from post-consumer ocean plastic, this reusable option guarantees a 27dB noise reduction. They’re designed to replicate the inner ear canal with an oval shape and a short, soft stem. To find your fit, opt for the discovery pack, offered at a discounted price with money-back guarantee. £20.

7. Finisterre Stormbird Waterproof Jacket

Minimalist in appearance but full of clever design touches, this triple-layer shell will keep you dry in style on your urban adventures. It has a 20,000 HH rating, two-way zip and taped seams to keep the elements at bay. But a breathable fabric, soft interior and micro-fleece neck guard make it comfortable in any weather. Add Finisterre’s planet-friendly ethos to the mix, and it’s an all-round winner. £195.

8. Tropicfeel Dune sneakers

Tropicfeel’s latest all-terrain sneakers are an all-in-one option with an urban design: they can be worn as aqua shoes, trainers, hiking footwear, slippers or an everyday piece. Compressible and lightweight, they’re easy to pack and machine washable. The brand has long been committed to inspiring conscious travel, offsetting all carbon emissions created when producing and shipping its gear. £89.

Published in the October 2022 issue of National Geographic Traveller (UK) 

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