Traveling South America with Kids: A Minimalist Packing Guide

Traveling South America with Kids: A Minimalist Packing Guide

I’ve been a mom for 7 years and a makeup artist for 18 years! As a makeup artist, the name of the game was to have everything with you, be prepared and make sure you’re ready for a change in direction on set, which means packing became the bain of my life! Since I’ve stopped working as a makeup artist to focus on the business and my kids, I’ve actually started enjoying packing and become pretty good at it if I do say so myself. 

We are currently on a 5-week, 10-flight trip around South America from a jungle setting to a city, farm, and beach with 2 different climates: summer and winter. All with a 3- and 7-year-old.  I started researching for the packing part of the trip a few months ahead of time because I knew this was a big feat. To add to it we packed up our house in LA and put everything in storage, so I had to make sure we had what we needed for the next six months as we weren’t sure where we were going to land after our trip to South America! We’ve been in a lot of unknowns, to say the least! Packing light and varied clothes were important not to mention toys and anything else the kids needed.

I am sharing how I managed to make it work and what products have really helped me streamline the process. 

Minimalist Packing List with Kids

A good easy to fold city stroller like Pockit

PockIt Stroller

Packing Cubes and a few extras for repacking for different flights and climates.

Neutral Packing Cubes

Cotopaxi Alla 35l Backpack: Big enough for a four-day trip & 4-people's clothes! Small enough to be a carry-on. We also love the Cotopaxi jackets that are warm enough for winter and thin enough to roll and pack away without taking up too much space, plus these jackets are super affordable. Shop here!

Lightweight Cotopaxi Green Backpack

Any fanny pack: We know that some of you may cringe at the thought of a fanny pack and others are thrilled it's back in style, but whether or not you love or hate them, they are just too good to not have when you're traveling! 

    Suntegrity: Sunscreen and makeup. You know we love mulit-use! Shop Suntegrity

    Ola Oil and All-in-One Balm: These two must-haves have been used in a variety of ways. A few ways that we have used it on this trip have been removing make-up, oil cleanser, moisturizing post shower, soothing mosquito bites. We've mixed the honey and balm to make a hydrating face mask. Check out how to use the balm & sugar has a lip mask HERE. Our daughter came down with a cold and we used the balm mixed with essential oils. We literally use it for everything! Shop Ouli's skincare here.

    Packing cube with hygiene essentials

    Davids Toothpaste Mini: Naturally sourced and clean ingredients. Instead of using potassium nitrate, they use nano-hydroxyapatite. Not to mention, affordable! Shop David's here!


    Captain Blankenship Shampoo and Conditioner: Lightweight aluminum and amazing smell. Safe for our planet and safe for you! We love this brand. Shop here!

    Sustainable Hair Care

    Mr. Green Manicure Set: This comes with many practical necessities and doesn't take up too much space. Shop it here!

    Compact manicure set in neutral tones


    Anxology Lip to Lid Balmie: Another multi-use winner! A plastic free lip balm that is full of color. We love to apply the Ouli's all in one balm and then the anxology balmie making for a perfect color that leaves no tacky lips! Shop here

    Plastic free lip balm

    Frankie4 footwear: With all the walking that we do, I know our feet will be taken care of and supported. Frankie4 has a variety of stylish shoes that are comfortable and supportive! Check them out here

    The World Game: This is fun for the whole family and all the friends along the way! Shop here

    The World Game

    Paint by Stickers: Perfect for a quick pack-n-go activity for the kids. Shop here

    Homeopathic Must-Haves 

    This covers everything from children's sudden colds or upset tummies to just about anything else that might pop up with all the flights and not much sleep. Tailor this based on your family's regular ailments.

    Disclaimer: This is not medical advice. Consult with your doctor before using any of the below-listed homeopathic tinctures.

    • Belladonna 30c 
    • Nux Vomica 30c
    • Occosilium
    • Wish Garden - Be well
    • Garlic Mullein Oil
    • Silkie Herbs - Gastro Relief
    • Mary Ruth vit D and zinc
    • Ancestral Supplements
    • Sovereign Silver - colloidal silver
    • Beekeepers naturals - immune support

    We hope this list has been helpful. Let us know what else you'd like to see! 

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