How Do You Prepare for a Trip?

June 3, 2016

I’m officially on my way to Lima, Peru this morning! After planning and talking about this trip for almost a year now, it’s crazy to think that I’ll be in South America before midnight. I’m all packed and ready to go, including my new waterproof backpack that I got very last minute after a panicked visit to REI. Shoutout to my boyfriend for guiding me through the store (as I am probably one of the least outdoorsy people out there) and helping me figure out how to convert cubic inches!

After months of planning and excited googling to see what travel bloggers have done in Peru, it’s almost hard to believe that I’ll finally be checking off Machu Picchu off of my bucket list. For the next 10 days we’ll be hiking our way from Cusco to Machu Picchu, stopping along the way at lodges where we’ll be able to relax and take in the wilderness around us. Granted I’ve never actually hiked 7-9 miles a day before, but there’s a first time for everything and I’m secretly kind of hoping that it’ll ignite a love of hiking in me!

Because I’ve never been to Peru before, let alone South America, I’ve been doing all that I can to prepare for our family hiking adventure. Besides buying hiking boots and trekking poles, I’ve also read several books including National Geographic’s “Traveler: Peru,” Mark Adams’ account of his attempt to retake the steps of the much vilified Hiram Bingham III, and I’ve also been trying (somewhat successfully) to learn common phrases in Quechua. Although I have an embarrassingly strong American accent, I believe that it is so important to learn about and respect other peoples’ cultures. Thus why I’m taking a stab at learning a new language somewhat last minute! Because, to be honest, nothing’s tackier than a tourist who walks around with no idea of what’s going on around, culturally and socially.

How do you guys usually prepare for a trip? I’m also a big fan of studying maps, although we’ll obviously have a guide leading us through the mountains. Which is definitely clutch because despite my love for maps, I have a terrible sense of direction!

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  • thefashionfolks

    Have a lovely one you! Bet South America and Peru will be so gorgeous and loving! Also love to study maps and get a sense of where the different places are ! Xx

    • Studying maps is always so much fun, despite the fact that I have an absolutely terrible sense of direction haha

  • Ooh how exciting! Have a wonderful time 😀

    Gemma x

  • Biana Perez

    First of all – have the most amazing time – can’t wait to see all your photos!! I usually buy one book and then stick to stalking the internet for research LOL! xo, Biana –BlovedBoston

    • Thank you! We had the most incredible time in Peru and I’m so excited to share my pictures with everyone soon!

  • Ianne Cabangon

    Safe travels ang have fun! Can’t wait to see pictures.
    Xo, Christianne

    • Thank you so much! We had such an incredible two weeks in Peru!

  • OMG this is my dream to go to Peru. I hope you will enjoy your journey. Please take pictures, so we can have a look when you come back.
    Yukova by Yuliya Oleynykova

  • Nina

    Safe trip and have fun in peru Courtney. xx

  • One of my good friends is in Peru now and just shared a picture of Machu Picchu. So amazing! We always research a ton too.

    Amy Ann
    Straight A Style

    • Machu PIcchu was absolutely incredible! Such a dream to visit!

  • Kelsey & Kenecha

    Great 🙂


  • When I travel I research with months in advance and print like 5 different maps. Also most important looking for great places to eat at. Have fun dear!

    My Vogue Style |

    • I’m always looking for restaurants to try while traveling! I’ve definitely planned a trip or two around restaurants that I want to eat at!

  • It look like you are ready! So excited for you. Enjoy this special trip and I hope you do enjoy hiking because those are long hikes. 🙂 Take lots of pics!

    • Thank you so much! We had such an amazing trip!

  • Duolingo is a great app that helps you learn the basics of any language. This trips sounds awesome, I hope you’ll have a blast!


    Tamara –

    • Oooh I’ll definitely have to check out this app! I could definitely use it to work on my Spanish and French!

  • Great tips! It’s definitely so smart to research before traveling. Thanks for sharing and have a nice trip!

    Vanessa, xo!

    • Thanks! I just love researching and finding out more about cities and countries!

  • Nequéren Reis

    Resenha maravilhosa amei as dicas dos livros, bom final de semana.

  • I definitely like to do a lot of research before trips too! It’s fun to also live in the moment but I find that reading up on places just gets me super excited and itching for the trip to get her faster! I hope you’ll have the best time ever dearest! xxxxx

    • I’m the exact same way! Sometimes I can get caught up in researching for trips and spend hours reading blogs about what to do and look for!

  • merel

    Great post babe! So helpful.

    X Merel

  • Omgosh Courtney you are making me soon jealous with all these places you’re visiting!! Always smart to do a little research before! Continue to have the best time lady!!

    Xox Dana Ivy //

    • Thank you! I absolutely love reading books, magazines, and blogs to find out as much as I can before getting on the plane/train!

  • andy
  • Have a fantastic trip, Courtney! You’re going to have a great time. I prepare for a trip by decanting all my favourite toiletries into travel-size bottles, read up on where I’m going, and wear comfortable shoes (boring but essential!). Angharad x

    • Thank you so much! I always forget to switch my toiletries into smaller containers until the last minute, so I’m always trying to do that right before I rush to the airport!

  • I love trip preparation and I also like to try learn some phrases in the local language! Have a wonderful trip!

    • Thanks! Learning common phrases is so important when traveling!

  • ah how fun! hope you have an amazing time on your trip!

    • Thank you so much! We had such amazing trip!

  • Sara Nielsen

    I love taking books with me on trips too!

  • Peru sounds amazing! Have so much fun! I usually do some research on the “must sees” when we’re traveling, and plan a loose itinerary around what we think will be cool! Not making it so structured def allows for some more exploring of the city.


    • I feel like I’m either super organized when I travel or I don’t plan at all and just see where the wind takes me haha. I love to just walk around cities, so I always make sure to do so in the mornings!

  • Milica

    Lovely post! Maybe we could follow each other on GFC and instagram @djonovic_milica? If yes, follow me and I follow back as soon as I see it.
    Let me know with a comment on my Blog

  • Love it dear

    xx Hadasah

  • Violette

    So cool! Have fun and enjoy your trip! Can’t wait to read about!!

  • Andreea Birsan

    Enjoy your trip sweety! Can’t wait to see the pictures!



    • I finally uploaded all of my pictures on my computer and I’m so excited to share them!

  • Your trip sounds so amazing! My mom did a similar trek combined with a climb so I’ll be sure to show her your pics when you blog about it!

    • Hiking was definitely such a unique way to explore the country, and I would 100% recommend it to other people who like being outdoors!

  • Sounds amazing! Have a fantastic time!

  • AngeliePangilinan
  • Trang Do

    Sounds great! Nice post!

    Love from {a lifestyle, fashion, beauty, and food blog}

  • Mary

    Hey Courtney,
    I’ve been dying over your Instagram shots in Peru. It looks amazing and I’m glad you’re seeing beautiful things. Like you, when I travel, I read some guide books, novels, and watch movies about the destination I’m visiiting. I try not to do too much prep though because I love getting somewhere and being surprised!

    Love, mary

    • Peru was such an instagram dream! My favorite thing to do while traveling is to walk around whatever city I’m in during the morning. I feel like you get such a good feel for the city out on the streets!

  • kandja sylla

    Planning for a trip like you…I’d also read a couple of books and blogs. I would like to get some tips for me to enjoy more while saving some money. Good point on learning a new language! xx

    • I absolutely love planning trips, thankfully there are lots of blog resources out there!

  • This is so exciting! I’ve been to South America multiple times but never to Peru. I hope you’ve been having the time of your life 🙂

    Daisi Ari |

    • After visiting Peru, I would absolutely love to visit more of South America! Patagonia is definitely on my travel bucket list!

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