If you're going to make the most of your trip to Europe, you're going to need a proper backpack. Why? Because you may need its contents to survive the next couple of weeks or months abroad.
If you plan to visit the busiest locations like Paris, London, or Istanbul, you'll need a backpack to keep up with your pace.
And if you're going hiking or camping in the country, you'll need a good one to hold all that equipment.
However, finding the best travel backpack for Europe can sometimes be challenging.
With Covid-19 regulations easing, the travel industry is bustling once again and so are travel supplies.
This is one reason why so many backpack options are available right now. Sometimes, you may find it hard to distinguish bad products from good ones.
But don't worry. After going on many trips and conducting market surveys, we have identified some of the best backpacks for your journey to Europe. Our list contains bags for every travel situation, whether hiking or city hopping.
Depending on your situation, this post will help you find the best travel backpack for Europe. Let's get right into our top picks.
This backpack is a masterpiece from the Osprey company. The company came into being in 1974, and since then, every backpack has passed through the hands of the company's owner, Mike Pfotenhauer, for intense quality checks.
The Osprey Fairview 70 backpack is a sister version of the men's Farpoint 70. Its 70L main pack and 13L detachable daypack are perfect for most of your adventures in Europe.
You'll also find it helpful on journeys across South America and Asia. Despite its basic weight, the Osprey Fairview 70 women-specific backpack lets you organize all the items you'll need on your travels.
Apart from the ample internal and detachable storage, the Fairview 70 zip-off daypack is additional storage that you can carry around town in the evenings.
The backpack also features a durable fabric that offers extra protection for your valuables.
For easy access to the main bag compartment, the backpack has a large panel zip that you can easily roll over. Also, there are lockable sliders to help keep your gears safe at all times.
A journey through Europe promises adventure and serenity, and you'll undoubtedly need electronics as you go.
As a result, the Osprey Fairview 70 comes with a tablet/laptop sleeve that helps keep your most essential gadgets secure.
While the Osprey Fairview 70 may be women-specific, it's still one of the best travel backpacks for Europe. Indeed, men can take advantage of it too.
There are different reasons why you may want to visit Europe. However, no matter the reason, you'll need a multifunctional backpack that you can trust.
This is where the KAKA Wear-resistant Backpack comes in handy. It is a stylish, multifunctional travel companion that organizes and keeps all your valuables in one place.
The backpack comes in three colors; green, black, and khaki. It is sturdy and made from durable canvas, which protects it from the rigors of your adventures in Europe.
Furthermore, the backpack features a large main compartment (about 30L). This portion of the bag can take about ten shirts, your magazines, a camera, books, and more.
It is a small warehouse that you can take advantage of any time. Also, the central area comes with a 15.6" laptop compartment.
Similarly, the front area has two pockets. The top compartment is big enough to hold a notebook computer and a tablet. The lower end is smaller and can keep your sunglasses, cases, keys, etc.
The KAKA Wear-resistant Backpack is convenient and highly efficient. It will serve you well even if you wish to go mountain climbing, hiking, overnight camping, and more.
It is multifunctional, and you can carry it in different ways. First, its durable shoulder straps let you carry the bag like a regular backpack.
Second, the side of the bag bears a sturdy handle. This handle enables you to carry the bag with one hand. This is useful when you need to put the bag in the car or take it out.
Lastly, there's a long shoulder strap that you can use if you wish to carry the bag, like a messenger or as a shoulder bag.
The KAKA company believes in the quality of its bags. As a result, they are willing to make an unconditional refund if you are not satisfied with the backpack after one month.
This men's specific backpack is yet another masterpiece under the Osprey flagship. It is the perfect bag for a long weekend away in Europe.
Due to the multiple activities expected to happen during your trips, this backpack comes ready to carry up to 50 pounds of load.
The Fairpoint 55 backpack is available in two colors; jasper red and volcanic grey. These colors are great neutrals and will match any outfit you choose during your travels.
If you aren't planning to stay long on your trip, you should select the small/medium size version.
It should contain all the items you need and remain compact. For longer trips, the medium/large size will be more appropriate.
All versions of the backpack come with livewire frames suspension. This suspension helps transfer the load from the harness to the hip belt.
Also, the bag features a mesh back panel that increases ventilation and lets your things breathe regardless of how long they stay in.
The main compartment (55L) bears a large access zip that lets you conveniently take items from the bag whenever you want.
Furthermore, the detachable daypack has a designated compartment that can safely house your laptop and tablet.
There's also a scratch-free stash pocket. With these features, you can carry your essential belongings wherever you go.
The Osprey Fairpoint 55 may be men-specific, but women can still find it helpful. Its unisex functionality certainly makes it one of the best travel backpacks for Europe.
This is a solid multipurpose travel backpack. It has the suitable capacity for business, overnight, or a weekend trip to the most exciting cities in Europe. It will hold all your belongings for the entirety of your trip.
The backpack is water-resistant and has a long-lasting, resistant oxford. This type of material will protect your gadgets and clothing from the elements.
The bag features a whole zip opening that allows easy packing until it reaches capacity.
Thanks to its water-resistant padded design and fabric, you can travel to any terrain you want.
There's a separate compartment for your laptop within the backpack; fully padded and will house a 17" laptop or lesser.
Also, a center zip makes it easy to stock several compartments with items vital to completing your journey.
Like the KAKA Wear-resistant Backpack, this BANGE Travel Backpack has multiple strap handles.
A shoulder strap lets you carry the bag like a backpack, and a side handle, and a long shoulder strap lets you carry the bag like a messenger bag.
Furthermore, the straps are fully padded for your comfort while carrying the bag from place to place.
Also, these multiple handles make the BANGE travel companion vital whether you are traveling for business, vacation, or adventure.
We quickly discovered that the bag could conveniently house 6 to 7 clothes on the first try.
It can also carry a pair of shoes, tablets, laptops, chargers, books, and other accessories.
For short camping trips, the BANGE Travel Backpack comes in handy every time.
This multipurpose travel backpack is not the most flashy-looking bag, but it has all the little spaces you need.
It is a sturdy material and has the capacity for business, adventures, and vacation trips.
With its durable canvas material, you can carry the backpack to most places under different terrains.
The G-Favor 40L Travel Backpack gives you various choices if you love to play with colors. It is available in colors like blue, khaki, coffee, and black.
We love the coffee color because it's trendy, matches most outfits, and can survive different weather conditions.
The G-Favor travel backpack is multifunctional. Its convertible design (duffel bag, cross-body, and backpack) allows you different experiences while using the bag.
Also, the comfortable design guarantees maximum protection for your belongings and shoulders.
Similarly, the bag has adjustable straps to help relieve stress from carrying the bag on your travels.
One of the most attractive features of the G-Favor travel backpack is its large storage spaces and pockets. It has a primary and laptop compartment that can house a 17.6" laptop.
Also, its many pockets can safely house other essentials like chargers, power banks, and more.
Furthermore, there's a waterproof compartment made especially for your shoes. With the G-Favor travel backpack, your weekend getaway or business trip will feel like a walk in the park.
The G-Favor travel backpack is not only big but also flight approved. It's also fashionable and perfect for international air travel.
According to the manufacturer, this travel backpack qualifies for a warranty and returns if you notice a defect after purchasing the bag.
If you're planning a short camping trip to any of Europe's top destinations, you should get one of the Witzman Vintage Canvas Travel Backpacks.
Also, it is yet another convertible travel bag on our list of best travel backpacks for Europe.
These bags are multifunctional and should be helpful for any activity you wish to engage in while on your trip.
Apart from its bold and impressive logo, this backpack from Witzman comes from high-quality canvas material that matches its quality coffee PU leather accessories.
Furthermore, the bag has a 53-inch long shoulder strap that lets you convert the bag to different carrying positions.
There's also a side handle that enables you to carry the bag like a briefcase. On the plus side is a zipper at the back where you can hide the backpack straps when they're not in use.
Most importantly, the Witzman Vintage Backpack has a large capacity. It features three front pockets and two side pockets for small items like your sunglasses and chargers.
There's a large zipper that encloses the main compartment. This compartment features open pockets, two slip pockets, and a large laptop compartment that can house a 16-inch laptop computer.
You can choose between four colors; 22-inch brown, black, blue, and light green. All of the Witzman vintage canvas travel backpacks come with a one-year warranty.
The customer care center is reasonably responsive, so you'll get a quick response if you need help with your bag.
The Osprey Farpoint Trek 55 (different from the regular Osprey Farpoint 55) is a fantastic but larger travel backpack.
Its standout feature is its back comfort, particularly when wearing it for long periods.
Unlike the name suggests, the bag isn't meant only for trekking. That's undoubtedly one of the intended purposes, but not the only one. The bag is also excellent for a long-term stay or round Europe trips.
You can see it as an upgraded version of the Farpoint series. The additional space is excellent if you have to pack for multiple climates.
It is also designed for outdoor activities thanks to an integrated rain cover and a comfortable back system.
Another great feature of the Osprey Farpoint Trek 55 is its adjustable suspension system.
You can adjust it to your specific torso height making it more comfortable than regular Farpoint bags.
If you are looking for a backpack that works well for trekking and travel purposes, Trek 55 is your best option.
What To Look For When Shopping For The Best Travel Backpack For Europe
There are dozens of travel backpacks that fall short when they are judged based on capacity.
Apart from these, there are many other factors that you should consider when you enter the market for a travel backpack.
When you set out to buy a backpack for your trip to Europe, ensure it is of the best quality. Check for the material quality, inner lining, and accessories.
The safety of your electronics, books, clothes, and documents may depend on your quality control.
Unfortunately, quality comes at a higher cost in most cases. Sometimes you may have to spend extra cash to get the best, but it's always worth it.
In more specific terms, look for water-resistant or sem-water-resistant materials like thick but lightweight fabric or nylon fiber.
If you get a backpack with rain cover, that's an extra that might come in handy.
Main Compartment Capacity
There are many travel backpacks with different capacities. Ultimately, the right one for you will be the backpack that fits perfectly with your travel style and how well you can manage space.
You can get around Europe with a standard 40L backpack if you are good at packing luggage.
When it comes to daypacks, the best size you'll get is 12L-30L. It all depends on the trip you intend to embark on and how long you will stay.
The ideal capacity for the best travel backpack for Europe falls between 30L to 40L. You should be able to get by with a backpack of this size.
However, if you wish to travel for more extended periods and need more space, you should look at the 70L range.
A backpack with an enormous capacity will be crucial if you are going hiking or mountain climbing.
The extra space will help house equipment and a couple more survival gear. Select 65L-70L backpacks when planning an extended camping trip or a cross country.
Determine The Backpack Type That You Want
The type of journey you embark on will determine the kind of backpack you buy. If you are going on a business trip or vacation, it would help to buy a backpack that can carry your laptop, tablet, clothes, and other accessories.
If you are mountain climbing or hiking, you should buy a bag with enough room to carry all your equipment.
A versatile wheeled backpack to carry everywhere may be your best bet for a more casual trip across Europe.
Ensure you have a general idea of the terrain you'll be crossing and your itinerary, so you can choose a backpack that fits your plans.
Front or Top Access
There are significant ways to access your belongings, and you must choose the one that suits you the most.
The top access lets you open the superior portion of the bag, and it is perfect if you carry a laptop, notebook, or tablet.
You'll find that most travel backpacks have a top opening, which is a particularly great feature for daypacks because it is safer.
Unfortunately, there's a downside to having a top-opening backpack. On rare occasions where you may need to pick something from the bottom, you may need to unpack the entire bag to reach it.
For a front-loading backpack, it tends to open like a suitcase. Hence, the opening is generally more prominent than usual, and you can easily access everything. For us, this is the ideal option because it is a lot easier to pack.
The ideal backpack weight for traveling through Europe is lightweight, preferably 1.4kg or 3lbs.
The bag must have a low weight because you may have to carry it on your back or shoulder.
To make things easier for yourself, you should also apply this principle when picking up your luggage.
A travel backpack with many compartments and pockets will help you keep your belongings organized and easily accessible. You can even use packing cubes which will make things a lot easier for you on your trip.
Apart from these, you'll still need multiple compartments to help pack and unpack.
You might need the main compartment for your clothes, and another compartment may house your shoes. Your sunglasses may fit in elsewhere.
Padded Straps and Back
Shoulder straps are pretty important when it comes to travel backpacks. This structure means that you will carry the total weight of your things on your back the entire time. As a result, you must buy a backpack with padded straps to avoid hurting yourself.
Also, look out for padded hip belts and chest straps. These features will make it easy for you to distribute the load weight whenever necessary evenly.
It will also help if your backpack has a mesh back panel with two vertical ribs of foams to provide extra padding and comfort.
This feature offers better ventilation to prevent your back from getting sweaty from all the walking you may have to do while traveling through Europe.
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Why should you use a backpack In Europe?
You should use a backpack in Europe because it's one of the easiest ways to portable pack your stuff while exploring Europe. The best travel backpacks are safe, comfortable, and stylish.
If you are just trying out backpacking for the first time, you should certainly begin your adventures in Western Europe.
The countries in these regions are safe, diverse, well-connected, easy to navigate, and bustling with plenty of excitement for locals and visitors.
You can begin with a short vacation and then work your way up to more extended stays from there.
How big a backpack do I need for a 2-week stay in Europe?
Spending two weeks in Europe does not require a massive backpack, especially if you're going on a business trip.
We recommend getting a mid-sized carry-on backpack with a 40L capacity. This type of bag will guarantee you flexibility across airlines and multiple regions.
This size is small enough to rest comfortably on your back while you make your way around trains and hotels.
Also, you'll be able to fit one or two weeks' clothing into the bag. You can always wash and wear it if you need to stay longer on your trip.
Can a 50L backpack act as a carry-on?
In practice, you cannot have bags larger than 45L as carry-ons. Many brands will advertise 50L bags as carry-ons, but when you double-check the bag's dimensions, you'll find that things are not as they seem.
A 50L backpack is technically too big to qualify as a carry-on. However, most airlines may not bother to check your bag's dimensions or look too closely if it appears close to the acceptable limits.
What should I pack for a two weeks trip to Europe?
There are no fixed answers to this question. But depending on the region you are traveling to, and the season, you may bring along a mixture of short-sleeved and long-sleeved tops.
Also, these tops must number up to four for variety and cleanliness. You should also bring along one sweater, two shirts, two pants (for women), two tank tops/base layers (also for women), a shirt and trousers (for men), and one raincoat.
You can pick these items based on the region you are visiting and the time you intend to be away.
Is it okay to wear leggings while in Europe?
If you aren't a local, wearing leggings will only make you stand out more like a foreigner. However, it is okay if you wish to wear leggings while in Europe.
You just have to make sure that you are numb to all the unwanted attention that your appearance may bring.
We believe that for your short stay in one of the world's most exciting locations, it would help if you try to blend in and look as normal as possible.
Is it safe to travel with a backpack to Europe?
It is generally safe to travel with a backpack in Europe. You can provide extra protection by exercising caution, never leaving the bag alone, and buying a bag lock.
Also, you can buy an anti-theft suitcase if you are not the vigilant type.
Furthermore, it would help if you invested in a backpack with a top opening instead of a side opening.
This prevents theft since there's only one access point to your belongings, and it's at the top.
Do I need a visa when backpacking in Europe?
Visitors from most countries may need a visa to travel through European cities. It is pretty standard procedure, but there may be a slight exception.
If you are an American citizen and do not plan to stay in Europe for more than 90 days, you may not require a visa to navigate major European cities.
However, you will need a passport that is still valid six months after the date you plan to leave Europe.
What is the purpose of backpacking?
Backpacking avails you the opportunity to see the world without spending fortunes. See it as an adventure to experience what life is like outside of your home country.
In most cases, you may have to lower your usual standards. Sometimes you have to eat publicly on street corners and other places that you generally would not go to.
Also, you may have to share utilities like restrooms and hotels with others.
But it is the best way to see exciting places like Europe on a budget.
The best travel backpack for Europe will make your trips memorable. They have unique designs that keep your valuables organized and in one place regardless of the places you visit.
When buying the best travel backpacks, you may sometimes have to spend extra cash. But if you manage to get the best, you'll quickly find that it's worth every penny.
Eurotrips sometimes last longer than you might have anticipated, so you need a great backpack to help keep your essential items within reach.
You can skip all the hassles involved in an internet search and just pick one of the brands we've reviewed in this article.
If you wish to buy elsewhere, please ensure that you read through our buying guide above. It will help you make the best choice.
Get yourself a befitting travel backpack; the whole of Europe awaits.