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Before I left for Taiwan, I had no idea what to bring.  I had no idea what the weather was going to be like.  Hot and cold.  Helpful, right?  I also didn’t know I was going to Japan until I was there, which didn’t help either.  One last thing to make it difficult, I was going to the Philippines after, so I needed clothes for pretty much all weather.

This is for a month and a half in Taiwan and Japan in the winter, January and February.  Here, I bring to you, a packing list for Taiwan and Japan in the winter.  Like usual, I’ll separate it into clothes, toiletries, technology, and other stuff.


3-5 racerback tank tops – These were mostly for the Philippines, but they worked for layering.

1-3 t-shirts

1 black cardigan

1 fleece zip up jacket

1 maxi skirt

1 pair of athletic shorts

1-2 pairs of jean shorts

1 pair of workout legging capris – I would have rather had long pants.  I didn’t wear these pretty much at all.

1 pair of jeans – These are a bit pricey, but I love them!  I also wish I brought  second pair

Rain jacket – Mine was similar, but pink

1 scarf

Lots of socks

Lots of underwear

2-3 bras

2-3 swimsuits

Flip flops

Fancy sandals – These broke towards the end of my trip so I got rid of them.

Tennis shoes

Fancy-ish not sandals

Fossil cross body purse


Solid shampoo in a square tin – It’s waaaay easier to get out of the square than the little round one.  I got a solid conditioner in Japan and didn’t like it, so I would avoid the light green Lush solid conditioner.  It smells heavenly, but didn’t work very well.  I would look for another one or just stick to the bottled stuff.

Travel sized conditioner – This was really difficult to find in Taiwan and Japan.  Plus I couldn’t read any of the labels.  I would bring a few more of these if conditioner is necessary for you.



Jojoba oil – I threw this out after maybe a week because it was too leaky.  I used it on my face and in my hair after showering.

Tea tree oil – I also use this on my face, usually mixed with Argan oil (which I dind’t bring) or Jojoba oil.


Roll on perfume



Nail clippers

1-2 nail polishes



iPad Air + charger

iPhone 6 + charger

Polaroid Snap + charge + extra paper (Here’s a version with a screen)

Canon Powershot G10 + charger + batteries

Kindle Paperwhite + charger

Portable Charger + charger

Waterproof Camera + batteries + charger

2-5 Extra memory cards + case

Other Stuff

Dry bag – This was perfect in the Philippines for island hopping and beach days.

Camelbak Groove insulated/filter water bottle – This got too dirty and I couldn’t clean it.  I love it at home, though.

Small notebook

Osprey laptop backpack – I didn’t have my laptop, but it was a good size for a daypack.  It was also super light and I couldn’t fit tons of stuff in it, so I didn’t end up carrying around too much stuff.

REI Vagabond Tour 40 Pack – I loooove this backpack.  It’s the perfect size.  Sometimes I wish it had straps on the outside, but I’m also glad it doesn’t because then I’d end up with too much stuff again.  And it works as carry on.

An actual book – I wanted this to trade at book exchanges

2 pairs of sunglasses

Sleeping bag liner – I only used it a couple times, but I’m glad I had it just in case.  It’s light and doesn’t take up much room.

Packing cubes – Like always, I love these and can’t imagine not using them.  I also like the Eagle Creek ones.

Pac Safe Bag Protector – I still haven’t used this and it’s kind of heavy.  I’m not sure I’ll keep using it.  This could be a good alternative to lock your bag to something.

3 luggage locks – I like these because I don’t have to worry about a key.

What I wish I brought

More long sleeved shirts, sweaters, or sweatshirts.  I ended up buying two in Taiwan.

Hat – I finally caved and bought one (and gloves) in Japan and was so happy I did!  I wish I had it sooner.


More conditioner

Warmer socks

Taiwan Guidebook – I had this at home, but left it there.  I figured I could do without it.  I wished I had it once I was there.  Here you go if you prefer Lonely Planet.

Hydro Flask water bottle – I didn’t even know about these at the time.  This one is 40 Ounces, but the size is totally worth the weight.  I can go longer between filling it up.  I would also like to try this one, I’ve heard good things.  It seems better for traveling since it has a filter.


Well, I think that’s it.  This all fit in my 40 liter backpack and daypack thing.  It got surprisingly cold and was rainy a lot, so keep that in mind if you’ll be moving around a lot and need things to dry fast.  Most hostels had umbrellas that guests could use, so I didn’t bring one.    Other than not having enough warm stuff, which was probably the most important stuff, I did alright.  There wasn’t much I didn’t use.  I hope this at least helps a little bit, i know I sure needed it.

Have you been to Taiwan or Japan in the winter?  What else would you recommend?  

What to pack for (1)packing-list-for