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Travelling sick sucks: Travel Tips to staying healthy

Travelling sick really sucks so make sure you read our travel tips on staying healthy while travelling to make sure it doesn’t happen to you.

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Travelling sick sucks especially if you end up in hospital!

There is nothing worse than travelling sick.

Not the kind of sick that leaves you with a little bit of the sniffles. I mean proper sick. The kind where your body aches in every nook and cranny.

Your throat feels like it is filled with sandpaper and your head pounds with the sounds of a construction crew.

Sitting in a hotel room staring out the window in some foreign city watching all the other tourists gorge themselves on sights while all you want to do is curl up at home and let your Mum look after you really sucks.

Travelling sick sucks especially if you end up in hospital!

Travelling sick sucks especially if you end up in hospital!

Actually there is something worse…

And that is when you have a trip coming up and you can feel the start of a cold coming on.

We had planned to go Mountain Biking in the north of England over the weekend and had even pre-booked our accommodation at the local YHA in Kielder. Unfortunately all week I have had the effects of one of those very colds.

Waking up bright and early on a beautiful Saturday morning with our bags packed and bikes set up I knew immediately that there was no way I could enjoy myself on this trip. I felt like shit.

There was nothing to do but cancel.

I had done everything right. I was a pill popping maniac. A few lozenges here, Vitamin C there. Nothing helped and the flu hit me like a tonne of bricks.

Could I have battled on and gone on the trip. Sure I could have. Would I have felt sorry for myself the anytime. You betcha.

We want to make sure that you don’t feel like me and get to enjoy your holidays! So these are our top travel tips to stay healthy while travelling:

Healthy eating and maintaining a balanced diet

Travelling and maintaining a healthy diet. “Pffff as if” you are thinking! Well let me tell you it can be done. Eating right will not only help keep you healthy it will also keep you on top off the world giving you the energy to continue exploring.

Vending machine lights will attract travellers like moths to a flame. Make sure you grab your 5 a day with local fruit and veges which will always be cheaper than that greasy kebab at the corner market stall.

Fruit and Veges Staying Healthy Travelling Sick sucks

Keep hydrated

If you are a frequent plane traveller then you will know that you will become dehydrated when you fly. And it is not just your insides. Your skin will become dry as well so remember to use moisturizers and fine sprays to keep your skin moist too.

Staying fit

The temptation to relax at all inclusive resorts can be alluring. However, just be aware that if you do then you are more likely to put on those few pounds that you probably tried so hard to shed before you started travelling.

If you are like us then you probably stay reasonably active on holidays. But you don’t have to go mountain biking in Canada or diving in the Red Sea to do that. Instead of catching a taxi or bus across town consider hiring a bike or using those two things sticking out the bottom of your pants. Yes, your feet!

Stay healthy by biking in Paris on the velibs

Stay healthy by biking in Paris on the Velibs

Get lots of Sleep

Travelling across time zones will quickly screw up your body clock. Unfortunately it is one of the hardest tips to set right. With your head nodding onto your chest do you try to grab an hours sleep when you arrive or party till you drop?

We recommend fitting in with the local time zone immediately. If it is the morning when you arrive then make sure you stay up till at least the evening. This will help you adjust quickly while still giving the rest you need to stay healthy while travelling.

Keep your paws clean

I was horrendously sick when we visited Marrakech and we could never pinpoint what went wrong. I don’t know whether it was the food I ate, the snake that was forced around my neck and made to kiss or something I touched. All I know is that I lost 8 kilograms in 2 weeks.

We wash our hands with alcohol sanitizer after we handle money or go to the bathroom when we are in foreign countries. It is disgusting not knowing what other people have done and then not washed their hands. So take all the precautions you can as well.

Wash your hands after handling snakes in Marrakech

Wash your hands after handling snakes in Marrakech

Medicines and Vaccinations

While you don’t have to carry a suitcase of spare meds as most places will stock the standards like paracetamol, cough drops and other pain killers. It is wise to carry spare prescriptions with you and translate lists of medications you usually use if you are headed to a foreign country.

If you regularly take medicines such as for asthma like myself then you know how much of a pain in the ass it can be if you run out or misplace your inhaler.

If you are headed somewhere that may require vaccinations then make sure you plan those well in advance. Some may require several doses over the course of a couple of months.

Better safe than sorry

These are pretty basic travel tips, but the basics are the ones that most of us often forget. Our greatest piece of advice is just to stop and consider everything you do, before you do it.

If the food doesn’t look quite cooked, or the water is cloudy, or that dude offering to shake your hand just sneezed into it then it might be worthwhile skipping it.

You do not want to end up like me at the moment and be travelling sick!

Cole is one half of New Zealand's leading adventure travel blogging couple who have been wearing out their jandals around the world since 2009. He loves any adventure activities and anything to do with the water whether it is Surfing, Diving, Swimming, Snorkeling or just lounging nearby on the beach. You can follow Cole on Google+. Or consider following us via RSS Feed, Twitter, Facebook and subscribe to our Newsletter.

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36 Comments

36 Comments

  1. Monica

    February 20, 2012 at 5:48 PM

    Great advice. There is nothing worse than being sick while travelling but most of the time you never really know what it was that made you sick.
    I’d also add that you should always try to eat in busy restaurants – even if that posh 5* restaurant ‘looks’ nicer. The busiest places always have fresh food and not something that’s been sat around waiting for a tourist all day.

    I hope you feel better soon!

    • Cole

      February 20, 2012 at 8:40 PM

      Good point Monica about the busy restaurants! You always know it is going to be nice as well if it is packed with locals 🙂

  2. Cathy Sweeney

    February 20, 2012 at 5:48 PM

    Great tips. I rarely get sick while traveling and it’s because I do these things (well, maybe I don’t get enough sleep). My husband swears by Colloidal Silver — uses it when he’s starting to feel a cold or flu coming on.

    • Cole

      February 20, 2012 at 8:41 PM

      Never heard of Colloidal Silver. Will look in to it thanks Cathy! We hardly get sick either but when I do it is the worst man-flu ever haha

    • Cole

      February 20, 2012 at 8:43 PM

      Haha yea we are pretty clued up on insurance now Stef after all our luck with broken bones and injuries 😉

      • Izy Berry

        March 27, 2012 at 8:30 PM

        Yeah, I think you got sick because the snake was angry you didn’t give him any tongue 😉 he put some voodoo curse on you – hehe!

        Nice tips. I’ve been sick a few times on the road, sucks, especially when you’re on your own. but it’s life = )

        • Cole

          March 28, 2012 at 3:18 PM

          Hahaha best comment ever! It’s fair to say that Adela didn’t want to kiss me after either 🙂

  3. Sam

    February 20, 2012 at 9:50 PM

    Well timed breaks from alcohol also seem to give your body a better chance of staying flu free and so forth.

    • Cole

      February 22, 2012 at 12:53 PM

      Haha yup a rest from alcohol can make a world of difference. Its amazing how much you can end up drinking on a holiday and then pay for it by getting sick!

  4. Suzanne Courtney

    February 20, 2012 at 11:59 PM

    Great tips – when in Marrakech we were advised not to buy orange juice from the stalls in the square. There’s nothing wrong with the juice but apparently the cups are washed in very dirty water… In India handwash was a must have.

    • Cole

      February 22, 2012 at 12:52 PM

      We drank the juice every day because it was so delicious so it could have been the glasses that made me sick! Unfortunately you never know with these things.

  5. Cherina

    February 21, 2012 at 2:03 AM

    e great list, Cole. I hardly ever get sick when travelling but recently ended up with a horrible case of food poisoning from food that seemed absolutely fine. So annoying when you do all the right things and still get sick. Hope you are feeling better soon!

    • Cole

      February 22, 2012 at 12:51 PM

      Thanks Cherina. Still sick but starting to bounce back slowly!

  6. Christy @ Technosyncratic

    February 21, 2012 at 3:10 AM

    I’m just getting over a nasty cold so I can relate. 🙂 We’ve found that sleep is a big one for us — as soon as we start traveling too quickly and feel run down, we start sniffling.

    • Cole

      February 22, 2012 at 12:50 PM

      Sleep is the key I think. Adela is lucky she can sleep anywhere but I always struggle on planes etc. And hate taking sleeping pills as it makes me feel worse I think.

  7. Laurence

    February 21, 2012 at 11:25 AM

    Travelling sick is the worst – it’s the only time when travelling that I’d prefer to be curled up at home!

    • Cole

      February 22, 2012 at 12:49 PM

      I hear you Laurence! Nothing worse than missing out on something all because of a cold.

  8. Jarmo @ Arctic Nomad

    February 21, 2012 at 8:54 PM

    I think I’ve been pretty lucky with my health on my travels so far, nothing too bad, and I tend to eat from almost every street vendor I find and I while I used to have an alcohol sanitizer bottle, I gave it away after it sat six months in my bag unopened.

    I do agree about the medications. You can’t really trust good medicine being available everywhere. The only time I got sick properly while travelling last year was of course in a small village in the Philippines where the most advanced medicine I could find was four tablets of Paracetamol! So do keep some basic medications (and antibiotics) with you 🙂

    • Cole

      February 22, 2012 at 12:48 PM

      We don’t travel with antibiotics but all the usual medicines we try to carry for sure.

    • Cole

      February 24, 2012 at 8:08 AM

      Thanks Aisleen! Agree with ya there 😉

  9. Stephanie - The Travel Chica

    February 23, 2012 at 9:04 PM

    I have been very lucky during my travels. Only one really bad cold that lasted over 2 weeks and 1 case of food poisoning in 16 months of travel. That is mainly because I follow the tips you have outlined here… except I never use hand sanitizer. I figure the germs and bacteria in small portions make my body stronger 🙂

    • Cole

      February 24, 2012 at 8:07 AM

      Never sure if the sanitizer works or not but didn’t seem to in Marrakech! I am just getting over the worst cold I have had in a number of years. Really knocked me back.

  10. The Time-Crunched Traveler (Ellen)

    February 23, 2012 at 11:39 PM

    Great tips on staying healthy! My problem is not usually getting sick while I am traveling, but for some reason getting sick once I return! Never fails after a big trip!

    • Cole

      February 24, 2012 at 8:05 AM

      I think that is always the case! We are always run down after a trip as we burn ourselves out and need a holiday from the holiday haha.

  11. Leslie (Downtown Traveler)

    February 25, 2012 at 4:56 PM

    Solid tips for staying healthy on the road! I’d agree that hand sanitizer is key especially when traveling in areas without good sanitation or even soap and running water in restrooms.

    • Cole

      February 26, 2012 at 9:00 AM

      Thanks Leslie! We always wash our hands after handling money or using the bathroom in countries where we cannot drink the water. It’s an annoying precaution but hopefully it works.

  12. The GypsyNesters

    March 2, 2012 at 2:04 PM

    Excellent – and you are right, a lot of it is basics. BUT I need to be reminded about the basics constantly! It’s so easy to get caught up in seeing new things and forgo proper sleep and eating! -Veronica

    • Cole

      March 2, 2012 at 9:27 PM

      We are terrible at not remembering the basics until we are sick and by then it is always too late!

  13. Gelois

    March 21, 2012 at 8:24 PM

    Hello,
    I’m Cuban, I like reading. I visit blogs that are interesting.
    I found your blog and liked it. I hope to visit you often.

    A kiss from Galicia, Spain

    I invite you to visit my blog

    • Cole

      March 22, 2012 at 9:47 AM

      Thanks! Much appreciated 🙂

  14. Pingback: Travelling Sick equals Travelling Sucks! | Travelling Piggy

  15. Lucy | gapyeardotcom

    June 7, 2013 at 11:54 AM

    You’re so right – nothing sucks as much as being on your travels and feeing ill.

    Looking after yourself can often be overlooked when you are having so much fun 😛 Keep hydrated is the one I always need to remember to do 🙂

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Travel Tips

4 Essentials for Travelling in Comfort

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If you’ve ever read our blog before, you know that we prioritize comfort above all else when we’re preparing to visit a new city, country, or continent. Of course, we’ve got our jandals with us, but there are a number of other travel essentials we’re sure to bring along on all of our adventures.

Looking for ways to maximize your comfort while you’re exploring the globe? Read on to learn all about our 4 essentials for travelling in comfort.

1) Practical luggage

Your luggage is essentially the star of the show when we’re talking about travelling in comfort. After all, you’ll be lugging it around from the train station to the airport and everywhere in between. Needless to say, you’ll want to have something that’s easy to transport, practical, and light so that you’re not struggling to make departure times or barely managing to get your bag up a flight of stairs.

There are a few different options to consider when choosing the right luggage set for your preferences. Let’s take a look.

  • Backpacking packs: If you tend to pack light and travel for long periods of time, a backpacking pack could be the most practical option for you. They’re generally pretty lightweight, can be used as carry-ons if they’re small enough, and they’re easy to haul around with you as you move onto your next destination.
  • Rolling suitcases: If you’re not so keen on holding the weight of all your belongings on your back, a rolling suitcase might make the most sense for you. Plus, they’re available in plenty of sizes so whether you pack heavy or on the lighter side, you’ll surely be able to find a suitcase that suits your needs.

2) Comfortable shoe options

In addition to your travel jandals, you’ll probably want to pack a few other options so that you can fit in with the culture of your destination and be able to do all of the activities that you travelled for in the first place. A pair of dress shoes would be useful if you fancy going out for nice meals or enjoy spending your evenings out on the town. And if you need a pair of comfortable tennis shoes to get you from point A to point B, a pair of stylish athletic shoes like Nikes or Inov 8 shoes would be perfect for exploring the city on foot while also fitting in with the local fashion.

3) Clean clothes

Travelling isn’t always as glamorous as social media makes it out to be. Sometimes, you’ll be feeling tired, disheveled, and in desperate need of a place to call home, if only for a few days. Which is why we’re recommending that you make an effort to have clean clothes always at the ready. Trust us, it’ll make a massive difference! No washer or dryer? No problem, just handwash your clothes with some all-purpose castile soap and you’ll feel fresh, clean, and ready to take on your next adventure!

4) In-flight care package

While it’s exciting to be en route to your next travel destination, taking a long flight is anything but comfortable. But just because you’re not in first-class doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy the luxury on the other side of the divide. Building yourself an in-flight care package is a great way to get the comfort of luxury travel while staying in the range of your budget.

Here are a few items to include in your care package:

  • Snacks
  • A reusable water bottle
  • A neck pillow and blanket
  • A book or magazine
  • Headphones
  • Hand sanitizer
  • A change of clothes
  • Facial wipes

Wrapping up

Travelling might be all about stepping outside of your comfort zone, but that doesn’t mean you have to be uncomfortable while you’re doing it. In order to travel in comfort, simply make an effort to:

  • Buy practical luggage
  • Find comfortable shoe options
  • Clean your clothes
  • Pack yourself an in-flight care package

If you use these four tips, you’ll be able to hop from adventures in Sydney, Australia to relaxing vibes in Austin, Texas totally at ease. Have any travel tips of your own? Be sure to share them with us in the comment section below.

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Travel Tips

Planning A Family Trip To The Canadian Niagara Falls

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If you are a regular reader of this blog you will know that we are big fans of the Niagara Falls. Over the years, we have written about visiting this fantastic tourist destination several times. But, the other day we realized that we have never put together one that is designed for families to use. So, here is our short guide to visiting the Canadian side of Niagara Falls as a family unit.

Spend at least one night in a Fallsview Hotel

As you can see from this website there are some fantastic hotels in the area. There are several five-star hotels that offer family rooms with a view of the waterfalls. Everyone is sure to remember staying in a room like that, especially if you are there to see the light show and fireworks display that takes place at various times during the year.

Take the Hornblower cruise

Getting a panoramic view of the waterfalls from your room is one thing, but to truly experience them you really do need to get closer. The Hornblower cruise is one of the best ways to do this. During the tour, you are taken very close to the base of the waterfalls. The noise is phenomenal and you end up really appreciating just how powerful all of that gushing water is. Just make sure that everyone wears the waterproof poncho that is provided. There is a lot of spray and even during the summer months, the water is very cold.

Journey Behind the Falls

If, for some reason, you don’t fancy getting on a boat take the Journey Behind the Falls tour instead. You start your tour by getting into an elevator that takes you deep into the earth so that you are level with the base of the waterfalls. After a short walk through some caves, you emerge onto a walkway that is located just a few meters from the base of the waterfalls. This tour provides you with some great photo opportunities.

Enjoy the Niagara Butterfly Conservatory

The self-guided tour at the butterfly conservatory only takes between 10 and 30 minutes to complete. So, this is an attraction you can easily fit into your itinerary. 

Enjoy the Botanical Gardens

If you have enough time, explore the Botanical Gardens. The Butterfly Conservatory is located in the gardens.

Visit the Great Canadian Midway

This is a 70,000 sq foot arcade that features hundreds of games. You could be in there for days and still not get around them all. It is a great way to let the kids relax.

Enjoy a trek with your kids

If you enjoy hiking with your kids you are in luck. The area has plenty of family-friendly trails for you to enjoy. There is something for everyone from beginner to advanced hikers. You can find out more about what is available from this website.

Be sure to plan ahead

Regardless of what you decide to do, our advice is to plan carefully and consider booking tickets in advance. Some of the attractions we mentioned above get very busy. If you already have your entrance tickets you can skip the queues.

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Travel Tips

Top 3 Trekking Destinations in Nepal

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Nepal is a country of diverse topography, having destinations for splendid trekking adventures. A combination of scenic pleasures and warm hospitality wherever you travel is what trekking in Nepal offers.

The diversity of land formations facilitates to trek in Nepal at any time of the year. Here are the top 3 trekking destinations in Nepal to choose from the list for your next adventure.

1. The Everest Region

Trekking to the lap of Mt. Everest stands as one of the most exciting treks you can do in Nepal. You have a wide range of options for trekking in the Everest region, including Everest Base Camp, Three Passes, Everest-Gokyo, and Everest Panorama.

From walking through the foothills of the world’s highest mountain to glacial lakes and high passes, the Everest region has all the essentials for a great trekking adventure.

The most popular trek in this region is the Everest Base Camp Trek which takes you to the base camp of Mt. Everest. The trekking trail takes you through subtropical forests to 5,545 meters at Kala Patthar. You get the best views of Mt. Everest and the surrounding mountain peaks from Kala Patthar.

The main highlight of trekking in the Everest Region is the mesmerizing mountain views of Everest, Lhotse, Ama Dablam, Changtse, Pumori, and Nuptse. You can find comfortable teahouses and lodges en-route the trekking trails of the Everest Region. These offer services like twin beds, local food, hot showers, and squat toilets.

However, if you prefer a more comfortable trek, you can choose the Everest Base Camp Luxury Lodge Trek. The luxury trek adds up features like comfortable beds with luxury mattresses, WiFi services, full-body massages, varieties of food choices, and a scenic helicopter ride back to Kathmandu from Kala Patthar.

Best Time for Trekking to the Everest Region

Autumn is the best time for trekking to Everest Region. In this season, the skies remain clear as there is little chance of rain. The temperature ranges from 15 degrees Celsius at night to 24 degrees Celsius in the day.

Dashain and Tihar, two of the most significant festivals of Nepal, also fall in this season. However, you have to make an advance booking if you choose the world-famous Everest Base Camp Trek in Autumn.

Likewise, spring is a good season for trekking in this region. The temperatures are slightly higher than during autumn but still favorable for trekking. A few rain showers may take place but nothing too heavy to disturb the trek.

En-route the trekking trails, the forests are lush green and filled with blossoming flowers. Teahouses are less crowded and quieter as compared to autumn.

2. The Annapurna Region

Adored by trekking enthusiasts from all around the world, the Annapurna Region is another popular trekking destination in Nepal. The Annapurna Circuit Trek is a world-famous trek. Along with it, Jomsom-Muktinath, Poon Hill, and Mardi Himal are other best trekking destinations in the Annapurna Region.

The Annapurna Region is a perfect blend of subtropical forests, high valleys, high passes, traditional villages, and breathtaking views of the high Himalayas. The main highlight of trekking in this region is the majestic mountain views of Annapurna, Dhaulagiri, Machhapuchhre, Hiunchuli, Lamjung, and Nilgiri.

The Annapurna Conservation Area is home to 1,226 species of flowering plants, 105 mammals, 518 birds, 40 reptiles and 23 amphibians. The rich flora and fauna diversity of the Annapurna Sanctuary is a highlight of its own.

The Annapurna Region is also great for backpacking Nepal alone. Since signposts and accommodation facilities are well marked along the trekking trails, you won’t need to worry about getting yourself lost in the woods.

Best Time for Trekking to the Annapurna Region

Spring is the best time for trekking to the Annapurna Region. In this season, the temperature ranges from 16 degrees Celsius at night to 25 degrees Celsius in the day. The forests of the Annapurna Sanctuary are fresh green and filled with colorful blossoms.

Autumn is also a suitable season for trekking to the Annapurna Region. Lively teahouses amidst falling leaves decorate the entire trekking routes.

However, due to the popularity of the trekking trails, autumn can be a little overcrowded. You may struggle to find excellent accommodation and timely flights. On top of it, the crowded trails may end up decreasing the overall adventure of the trek.

You may have to pre-book if you choose the world-renowned Annapurna Circuit Trek in Autumn.

3. Restricted Region

Nepal has several restricted areas that you can trek to have adventure experiences. Some of the best trekking destinations are Manaslu, Upper Mustang, and Tsum Valley. All of these trekking destinations lie in Rainshadow areas, so these regions are trekkable throughout the year.

The trekking routes in the Everest and Annapurna regions are wet, slippery, and unfavorable for trekking in the Summer season. However, restricted areas are where the rain shadow regions shine. The backdrop of the mountains is free from the rainy clouds with little chance of rainfall throughout the year.

The main highlights of trekking in the Restricted Region are the mountain views of Manaslu, Ganesh, Himchuli, Sringi, Boudha, and Nilgiri.

The secluded and serene trails are best for vloggers pursuing unexplored landscapes. Also, the restricted regions of Nepal offer some of the best footages for beginners trying to start a vlog to show the world. For instance, the Forbidden Kingdom of Lo and the rustic trans-Himalayan terrain of Mustang are a few to name the highlights of trekking to the restricted regions.

Best Time for Trekking to the Restricted Region

The restricted region is an excellent choice for trekking in Nepal during the Monsoon. Most of the restricted areas like Manaslu and Upper Mustang are rain shadow regions.

Even in the rainiest months of the year, these regions are sunny and dry. The temperatures range from 22 degrees Celsius at night to 27 degrees Celsius in the day. However, the temperatures may fluctuate at elevations higher than 4,000 meters.

Don’t get me wrong though; the restricted regions are trekkable during the autumn and spring as well. The temperatures are favorable, and there are accommodations available throughout the trekking trail.

Final Say

There are lots of trekking destinations to explore during your visit to Nepal. Choosing any region from the above list of top 3 trekking destinations in Nepal offers its peculiarities for you to enjoy during your journey.

Some of the regions may be favorable for one season while some are for other seasons. Nevertheless, Nepal boasts various locations for trekking in every season.

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Meet Cole and Adela

Cole and AdelaWe have been wearing out our jandals (Kiwi for flip-flops) on our travel adventures around the world since 2009. We think our blog is thought provoking and a little witty. But we have been proven wrong before. Find out more about us here...

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