Girlfriend Trip to Hokkaido — What to pack?

My friends and I decided to take a trip to Japan. Since it is summer, we wanted to avoid the humidity that is expected in Tokyo so we decided to go to Hokkaido and enjoy their seafood.

I don’t know how much I will buy so I packed a big suitcase with a smaller suitcase nested inside so I wouldn’t have to worry about space/weight requirements on the way home. I like using hard-side suitcases so it protects the contents. I also packed a big canvas duffel/Boston bag (purchased on one of my previous Japan trips) inside in case I needed even more room.

This is a pretty short trip. We leave on a Thursday/arrive on Friday evening. That gives us five full days in Hokkaido before leaving on Wednesday night. So–what do I pack to have everything I need for this fun trip with my fabulous girlfriends? I’m working on being a light packer these days so I’m going to try and pack things that can be used for multiple purposes.

  • Mini Umbrella — The weather forecast showed a chance of showers on a few days.
  • Thermal Bag — To take with me to the Chitose Airport so I can pack my Royce chocolates in it on my flight home to Hawaii.
  • Duffle bag — To take to Otaru for our two-night stay at a ryokan. We will leave our big suitcases at the Sapporo hotel during this time.
  • Champagne — ‘Nuff said.
  • Workout clothes/sneakers — I always try to pack at least one workout outfit on any trip I go on. Sneakers are always practical to have.
  • Backpack — Even though a backpack isn’t the most stylish way to carry my things as I walk around, I have found it to be the most convenient way for me to travel. Especially when shopping. I just stuff my purchases into my bag and can continue moving about easily with hands free to take lots of pictures.
  • Scarf — I usually pack one or two scarves. I use it as wraps and have found that it is easier to pack than jackets. Since I don’t get cold easily, these wraps are perfect for me. They are light and add color to my very black wardrobe.
  • Handkerchiefs — I pack a couple of handkerchiefs for travel — especially to Japan because the bathrooms there often don’t have paper towels. Plus, it is better for the earth to use handkerchiefs rather than disposable paper towels, right?
  • Black dresses — When I travel (and actually even at home) my wardrobe is very black. Having a monochrome wardrobe makes it easy to mix and match. All I have to do is add some colorful wraps and accessories to it to brighten it up. Dresses are versatile for me because I can dress them up or down for day and night and they work for cool or hot weather. And black is always easy to dress up if needed.
  • Shorts/t-shirt — I usually bring at least one shorts/t-shirt set in case there is lounge time at the hotel. I’m not expecting to have a whole lot of shorts/t-shirt lounge time on this trip.
  • Sweater — I’m packing a sweater/wrap that can be used for day or night. The forecast shows 50s and low 60s while we are there.
  • NOT packing shampoo/conditioner/soap — The places at which we are staying in Japan all have great shampoo/conditioner/soap options so I’m leaving that out of my suitcase.
  • Shoes — 1-Comfy/walking sandals, 1-sneakers, 1-slippers.
  • Miscellaneous items — hand sanitizer, sanitizing wipes for the plane, swimsuit, li hing lemon and other snacks.
  • International Cell Plan — since I’m not traveling with my family, I don’t need a pocket wifi. Instead, I pay around $10 a day to have access to AT&T International Day Pass that gives me cell and data usage.
  • Suica/ICOCA card for ease of going through train stations.

I’m looking forward to this trip! I’ll tell you what we ate and where we went after I get back. I”m sure I’ll be too busy to write blog posts during the trip. Living Hilo Style in Hokkaido!

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