This is a post in an ongoing feature on Her Packing List called “The One Little Thing“. Each week or two, we’ll be interviewing a traveling lady to find out the one little thing she just can’t travel without. This one comes to you from Andrea Anastasiou.
I’m your stereotypical long-term traveler in many respects – three years ago I realized that 9-5 life wasn’t for me, so I quit my job and started working on my own freelance writing business and blog while traveling the world. I spent a year in Asia, and I’m currently in Europe, although I’m itching to head to Japan later this year! You can read more about my travels at Scribble, Snap, Travel. My Manduka PROlite yoga mat is the one thing that I just cannot go without.
What one little thing can you not travel without?
My Manduka PROlite yoga mat is always with me. Yes, sometimes things need to get thrown out to make way for it, but I just cannot travel without it now!
>> Check for prices and deals for the Manduka PROlite yoga mat on Amazon.
Why has this one item been so important to you?
I have been practicing yoga on and off for most of my adult life. Early in 2015, I was in Ubud, where I spent the whole month going to yoga classes at one of the famous studios there. They use Manduka mats and once I tried one I knew I just had to get my own. It’s great to be able to practice wherever I am in the world – not only is it good exercise, but it’s also great for my sense of wellbeing.
Plus, I made a lot of great memories in Ubud, so I guess in a way the mat gives me some sort of a connection to the time that I spent there.
How packable is it? Does it take up much room? Is it heavy?
It does take a substantial amount of space in my backpack, so I now have a mat carrier that I take as a carry-on. I just pop it in the overhead compartment and try to remember to reclaim it when I’m rushing off the plane after we land!
Why would you recommend this to your travel friends?
The mat itself is one of the best on the market, if not the best. Yoga teachers are always recommending it, and I can see why – I wouldn’t want to use any other mat now. So yes, if my friends who travel a lot love yoga, I always recommend it. Practicing on this mat makes the world of a difference, as it’s got the perfect amount of padding for all those poses!
Can you name one incident or situation where you were so happy to have this item with you?
I was in Skyros, Greece in September last year, attending a writing retreat. I got there to find that I was staying in a gorgeous, traditional little house with a terrace that overlooked the town. The view was spectacular – like a Greek postcard. I was so happy to be able to practice there.
How did you hear about this item?
At the Radiantly Alive yoga studio in Ubud. They use the exact same mat in the studio.
What sort of traveler is this item perfect for?
If you care about staying healthy – both physically and mentally – while on the road, I recommend a) introducing yoga to your exercise regime if you don’t already practice and b) buying this mat.
There’s nothing quite like waking up in a new destination and knowing I can start my day practicing yoga – whether that be by the beach or in the privacy of my hotel room – on my own mat. If you’re looking for an even lighter mat, I recommend their LiveON series, instead.
>> Check out our other post on traveling with yoga mats for more mat styles and tips.
About the Author: Brit by passport, Cypriot by genealogy and Asian at heart, Andrea Anastasiou is a freelance travel writer and cocktail aficionado. She is currently traveling the world and documenting her experiences over on Scribble, Snap, Travel – a solo female travel blog with an emphasis on the transformative power of travel. You can also find her on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
*This post contains affiliate links. See our disclosure here.
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