Ashley LeBelle

Creative, Health & Wellness Coach, Restaurateur, Believer.

My Packing List: Zanzibar, Tanzania

In less than a week i'll be on the other side of the world yet again for a great adventure. I always develop flight anxiety around this time and try to combat it with positive energy as much as possible. One method that I have found helpful in combating traveler's anxiety is making lists and writing everything down. Hence my ultimate packing list came to be!! I swear by this method. Sometimes it makes me over pack but I rather have everything I need in case of an emergency situation. Like that time I lost my Visa debit card in southeast Asia; but that's a different story that I will tell later. In the meantime, here's my packing list for my upcoming trip to Zanzibar, Tanzania in October. If you have any suggestions and add ons leave them in the comments below. 

Kindly, 

Ashley LeBelle

 

Packing List:

• Passport (with an extra copy in the bottom of my luggage)

• Travel insurance (with an extra copy)

• Airline tickets (digital as well as a paper copy)

• Cash in USD and foreign currency ( I always order foreign currency from my bank 2 weeks in advance)

• At least 2 credit and 1 debit cards

• Adapter converters for electronics

• Any entry visas or vaccination certificates required

• My favorite Nikon D3300 Camera, 2 memory cards, batteries, and chargers

•Mophie phonecase charger

•2 Portable battery packs for charging iPhone 

•Macbook computer and charger

• Reading material

• Favorite prayer journal

• Swimwear

• Rain poncho

• Rain boots

• Hat

• 2 Sunglasses

•1 Shorts/skirts

•3 Long skirts

•1 long casual dress/ 1 long dressy dress

• Loose-fitting, light colored clothing

• 2 Headwrap Scarf options and very modest clothing to cover head

• Multiple T-shirts

•  Socks

•Hiking sandals-- my favorite are here

• Sunblock

• Insect repellent

• Toiletries and minimal makeup case

•Eye mask for the plane

• Watch/alarm clock

• Water bottle

• Antibacterial wipes/gel

• Ear plugs

• 3 Plastic bags

• Vitamins

•Pepper Spray (because I will be traveling alone and I want to be safe. TSA allows mace in checked bags only.)

• First-aid kit (should contain lip salve, Aspirin, Band Aids, anti-histamine, Imodium, rehydration powder, emergency antibiotics received from doctors for travelers diarrhea or illness)

 

Traveler's Belly: Mexico Edition

After arriving home from a recent trip to Mexico for a friend's wedding, I quickly came down with what seemed to be an endless agony of "poop emergencies" and barf frenzies. With frequent trips to the bathroom every 15 minutes for roughly 3-4 days straight. Little sleep, lots of weight lost, and a buldging stomach from malnutrition, I wondered what I had ate in Mexico that could have triggered this illness. As I back tracked in my mind I remembered the meal I had the night before boarding my flight back home. Shrimp ceviche! If you know me you know that I love ceviche, be it shrimp or fish I love it all. But ceviche isn't just shrimp with citrus and a beautiful arrangement of herbs and veggies. It's raw shrimp!... with a beautiful arrangement of herb and veggies. Bad idea.

Everyone knows the number one rule about Mexico. Do not drink the water! Which I did not do and even avoided ice in all my drinks at all cost. But they never said don't eat the contaminated shrimp that has been swimming around in the contaminated and bacteria stricken water either. So I learned the hard way. This had to be the worst health experience I have ever had in my life BUT I learned a valuable lesson for future trips. Do not eat raw shrimp in foreign countries. EVER.

To make sure that I never get traveler's belly again and no one else does I made a list of rules as well as some natural remedies that turned things around. See below. 

  1. Drinking bottled beverages, including bottled water, is usually safe. 

  2. Tap water and dairy products should be avoided. 

  3. Be sure that tea and coffee are made with boiled or bottled water. 

  4. Alcoholic drinks are generally safe, but travelers should watch carefully to ensure that these are not served with ice cubes made from tap water in at-risk areas. 

  5. Brushing teeth should be done with bottled water.

  6. Beware of any contact with tap water in areas with unsafe water supplies, including consumption of fruits or vegetables that may have been washed in unsafe tap water. 

  7. Try to eat vegetables and fruit (like bananas and oranges) that you can peel yourself. 

  8. Buying food from street vendors can in some areas poses a risk for infection. 

  9. Avoid consumption of undercooked meat or seafood.

 

Natural Remedies:

 Activated Charcoal- Sold here

Alkaline Water/ Coconut Water

Anti-Anti-imflammitory Tumeric Capsules- Sold here

10,000 IU Vitamin D3 - Sold here

Probiotics- Sold here

Plant Based Protein- My favorite brand here