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First time packing for two climates. Help.

Leaving September 12 for 5 weeks. The first 3 weeks will be in the UK; London, Cotswolds, York and Edinburgh. Final 2 weeks in Spain.

Just now starting to think about what clothes to pack and realize we will probably need to pack for quite a range of temperatures. I think by the time we get to Spain, my feet will be ready for sandals and we will need much lighter weight clothes.

I'm thinking 3-4 long pants, but know I might welcome capris in Spain. Long sleeve, short sleeve; already confused. Our suitcases usually weigh about 22 pounds each. Need suggestions on how to do this.

Thanks so much. Oh - forgot- I think I would also like to pack a light weight dress for Spain!

Posted by
9928 posts

I would probably go with 2 long pants and 2 capris. Do you have a pair of long pants that rolls up to capri length? Then take those so they will do double duty. Each short sleeve shirt matches all 4 bottoms. Cardigan or 2 for England to wear over the SS tees. Waterproof/windproof jacket.

Wear your heavier walking shoes, pack your sandals. If your walking shoes are comfortable maybe you won't need to take another pair. Can you wear the sandals with the dress?

You can get one of the soft squishy fabric sun dresses and layer it on the bottom of your suitcase, then just shake it out when you get to Spain.

Posted by
1353 posts

Think layers. Go ahead and pack the capris and dress for spain, but for tops you should be able to use the same things. Just make sure you have layers for while you are in the UK. We've done similar trips with hot days in Italy and very cool days in the UK and Germany. I have pants that can tie up into capris that were very helpful, and my husband had the dreaded zip off pants.

Posted by
3789 posts

Where in Spain ? Temps may vary north to south and at altitudes.

Posted by
71 posts

Hi Sue. In May I somewhat did the reverse of what you're doing (Italy to Ireland), albeit I was only gone for 18 days. I wore dresses every day in Italy and wore most of the dresses in the evening in Ireland. You should be able to do something similar in the UK at that time of year. I wore pants every day in Ireland with either a lightweight shirt or light sweater and a light coat. I had two pairs of pants, 5 shirts, 5 dresses, underwear for all 18 days, and two light sweaters. I wore a sturdy pair of black shoes on the plane and packed stylish summer shoes from Blu Kicks, along with a dressy pair of sandals. All of this fit in a carry-on suitcase, with room for some small souvenirs. Good luck!

Posted by
776 posts

Imho 4 pants are too many. I recommend bringing just one additional pant and wear one; bring a Capri. I would bring mostly short sleeve t's and a couple long sleeves that fit over the other shirts; with a sweater and a raincoat you should be warm enough. A nice scarf can keep you warm and add style. A skirt might work better as you can wear any top
With it; that might be more flexible. Consider leggings to go under the skirt and you can wear it in Britain.

I always bring a thick wide scarf for the plane no matter the season, it can be a sweater and an extra layer if really cool. I roll it up tight in my carryon and use longer ponytail elastics to keep it rolled tight. I might bring a big ziplock bag to keep it in and carry it in my day bag.

Have a great trip.

Posted by
1179 posts

The key for two climates is three-fold:

  • base your clothing on the warmest temperature and layer additional clothing under and over for cooler temps
  • utilize convertible clothing such as pants that roll into capris and long sleeve shirts with roll tabs that convert to short sleeve
  • bring temperature extenders for layering: silk tee shirt or long underwear top, leggings, base layer shirt, puff jacket, scarf, raincoat

It looks like this:
* Bring a sun dress and add leggings and a sweater for cool days. Add in a silk tee underneath for cold days. Wear with sandals on warm days and perhaps with ankle boots on cold days
* wear a short sleeve or roll tab shirt on warm days with a skirt or roll up pants. Add a sweater, and under layers as needed for cool days. On cold days add the leggings under the pants.

Key temperature extenders:
* silk like cami top like Uniqlo airism top
* scoop neck silk long John top
* wool socks
* leggings
* a t zip base layer top (synthetic or wool)
* puff jacket like Patagonia nano puff
* waterproof jacket
* decent cardigan
* 1-2 scarves

Key convertible clothing
* lightweight convertible top like the Express Portofino top (roll tab sleeves only)
* pants with stretch in them so you can roll them up and cuff them. I use Royal Robbins or Columbia.

I'd suggest
2-3 pants
2 short sleeve top
2 light weight long sleeve tops
Another light top
1-2 sweaters
Ankle boots?
Low cut waking shoes?
Plus the extenders

All material should be light weight. Warmth is from layers not thickness .