Hammock_2Traveling on its own is an amazing thing, whether you are going solo or with your family. If you have any experience at it you know that it can never be perfect. Recently I’ve discovered some offbeat products that really make the trip more enjoyable, despite anything that might not go according to the plan.

4 Surprising Travel Accessories:

1. Travel Hammock for Two

Who doesn’t want to travel with a hammock? But just the thought of how heavy it can be puts me off instantly. Recently we went to an gorgeous eco lodge where there would be lots of chill out time. But one thing they didn’t offer was a hammock, just for fun, I decided to see if this would be something I can bring along. (I also had room for a heavier item.)

I started looking for a travel hammock. When it arrived, with the suspension straps to put it anywhere, I was shocked. It was tiny, weighing less than 2 pounds and for two people! The Eno’s Double Nest Deluxe Hammock has enough space for both of my boys, holds up to 400 pounds and it only weights 1.5 pounds.

Now, it’s a permanent addition to my packing. It’s so tiny and makes my kids happy, what else can you wish for?

Dress_12. Eco Friendly Convertible Dress

The number one thing I look for when I pack for a trip are versatile clothes, that I can use in many different ways. Some other things that I look for in clothes are: eco friendly, dresses and companies with a good purpose.

That is why I felt like I had hit the jackpot when I found one with all of those characteristics, a 2 in 1 convertible dress. The company that makes them has a great motto: ’Helping the Earth… One garment at a time’. Aventura Clothing certainly had what I wanted – now it was a test to see if it was all that it offered.

When I first opened the package I found a guide about the different ways to use this dress, and discovered that it is not a 2 in 1, it is more of a 5 in 1. Out of the 5 styles I ended up loving these styles: the skirt, a no straps maxi dress and the straps around the neck maxi dress. Having such a versatile garment saves a lot of space in my suitcase.

3. Laptop Backpack for Women

I have been carrying an ugly, oversized laptop bag for the last 3 years, simply because I hadn’t found a laptop backpack for women that fits my needs. As a mom I need one that looks good and that also has a lot of space for extra stuff that I need for my kids.

Laptop_bagAfter a lot of research I found the Cambridge Laptop Bag It is a beautiful all purpose bag that can be used with a strap like a cool oversized purse or as a backpack, it also passes off as a briefcase.

Aside from having all the space I need and how versatile it is, this laptop bag is also very stylish, and the material looks like it’s going to be with me for a long time.

4. Hiking Boots for Kids

Hiking is an activity that sounds like a great family activity, but after doing it several times with the kids, instead of raves we get complaints. This makes the whole experience almost miserable. Since I love being outdoors, something needed to give – fast.

One of the discoveries I made is that there aren’t any good hiking boots for kids in my house. I’m not sure if that is part of the problem, but it is something that I can change.

So the search began and I ended up going for Breeze 2.0 Kids UltraDry boot by Vasque. They were a huge hit! After a heavy duty hike, during Guatemala’s rainy season and tough terrain, the boots probed to be durable and water resistant. But the greatest surprise was that my boy never wants to take them off telling me, “They feel like slippers that cover my ankles”.

And they have the ‘cool factor’ written all over them.

Hiking_BootsThese 4 items have made our family trips a lot better than they already were. But, as we all know, what works for my family might not work for you. Do you know of any other products that might help someone else?