Complete Packing List for Contiki Tour of Portugal and Spain

McKenna Carter Avatar

Young woman in a small group of people, holds her phone up in the air in one hand while grinning in sunglasses, a black shirt and white skirt, in front of a red brick building.
Photo credit: McKenna Carter

Packing for a 9-night Contiki tour that covers four cities, two countries and four different hotel rooms over 8 nights can be a little intimidating. You have to pack enough to meet all of your needs but pack light enough to be able to move easily from one place to another.

Here, I share my complete packing list for my Contiki tour of Portugal and Spain as well as my packing list for that dreaded overnight flight from the U.S. to Europe.

Read More: Check out my full Contiki Tour review.

What to Pack for an Overnight Flight

All the products on my list I bought in mini sizes so they would pass TSA scrutiny and fit into a small travel bag I tucked into my backpack for easy access during the flight. In terms of packing for the plane, especially overnight ones, I make sure I always bring these essential things:

What to Pack for the Tour

I am a light traveler – the less I have to lug around with me the better. I brought a small suitcase and the large Contiki-branded backpack the tour company sent me the week before the trip. If you like to buy a lot of souvenirs, consider sizing up to a medium-sized suitcase but not packing it full at the start of the trip so you’ll have room to bring back all of your treasures.

SheBuysTravel Tip: Check the weather at your destination(s) periodically before you pack. This will heavily impact what you bring. I traveled in March, when temperatures in Portugal and Spain were projected to be cooler (low 60s Fahrenheit) with a decent chance of precipitation.

Because of this, I packed these things to wear:

With all of that in my small suitcase, I had just enough room to carry back a few small items.

SheBuysTravel Tip: I use the rolling packing method to save space. Tightly roll up all of your jeans, tops, and jackets to keep them wrinkle-free and make for more room in your suitcase.

Toiletries to Pack

It can be tricky to know what to bring in terms of personal items because it depends on what the accommodations will provide. I reached out in advance to Contiki to understand what I would need to bring.

 Here’s the list:

  • Small personal skincare items (All hotels provided a bar of soap for showering)
  • Microfiber towel
    • Not every hotel offers complimentary towels (and in some cases you may find yourself having to pay for a towel service). Microfiber towels are great because they are incredibly fast-drying fabric and this is better than having to lug around a damp wet standard towel as you go from place to place.
  • Small Shampoo and Conditioner
    • All the Portugal and Spanish hotels we stayed in supplied shampoo and conditioner; that may not be the case for some other country trips.
McKenna Carter Avatar
Meet McKenna, a globe-trotting travel writer with a knack for uncovering the hidden adventures within cities. By day, she works as a Sustainable Design Consultant within the architecture industry, passionate about diverse landscapes and vast differences in urban development. But when the workday ends, McKenna swaps blueprints for a backpack, setting off to explore the world’s most intriguing corners. As a travel journalist with an eye for detail, McKenna brings readers along the journey, capturing the essence of what it is like to travel as a woman in different cultures and environments. Through words and design, McKenna is on a mission to spark adventure and excite others to make the world a greener, more vibrant place—one building and one article at a time.
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