Some of us may be dreaming of a ‘White Christmas’; while others are already making holiday plans for the year ahead. When it comes to travel aspirations for 2023, there’s nothing quite like a road trip to tick all the boxes. Taking you through historic cities and past ancient forts, via ocean roads and over dramatic peaks, if you want immersive travel, the open road will give it to you.
A road trip will also give you that elusive feeling of freedom – there’ll be no flight delays to contend with; no luggage to wait for – all you have to do is fill up the tank, put your favourite tunes on and hit the gas.
If you have a travel aficionado in your life who is planning an epic road trip, then these gift ideas will be the perfect way to elevate their experience an uplift their motorway mojo.
Briggs & Riley Sympatico Expandable Spinner Suitcase
This chic suitcase will prove to be the ultimate road trip companion. Sleek yet sturdy, the medium size is roomy enough for a longer break, yet, crucially, it doesn’t take up too much room in the boot. The case also has ‘compression-expansion’ technology, so that it allows travellers to pack 17% more (ideal if they find souvenirs along the way). Its lifetime guarantee and a choice of navy, plum or black colourways are added bonuses, plus you can have it engraved with initials for an extra-special touch.
£649 for the medium size, briggs-riley.co.uk
Smythson ‘Off the Beaten Track’ Soho Travel Journal
With this classic Panama leather notebook, your traveller can detail every moment of their journey when taking the path less travelled. Smythson’s iconic leather notebook borrows its grosgrain texture from the brand’s famous Panama diary, designed by Frank Smythson in 1908. The notebook is lightweight, flexible and hard-wearing, and its blue, gilt-edged pages are a joy to write on. It also contains including ‘to do’ and ‘packing’ lists, itineraries, travel notes and full colour world maps. It’s the perfect way to hold all their memories.
Madeleine Thompson Cashmere Wrap
This roomy wrap by Madeleine Thompson will keep them cosy on long car journeys and is luxurious enough to double up as a cover up for nights out under the stars. Made from the softest cashmere, it provides comfort and warmth when away from home and is a ‘forever’ addition to any wardrobe. Having grown up in both London and Hong Kong, Madeleine melds her experiences and perspectives from both ends of the globe into one unique design aesthetic.
Blasta Henriet Eye Pillow
This weighted pillow is just the thing to beat tiredness if they’ve been on the road – or at the wheel – for too long. Blasta Henriet was founded by Swedish native Lo Blästa in 2017, and the brand celebrates natural remedies, traditional craftsmanship and a passion for linen. It has a washable, removable cover, and the inner pillow can be heated in a microwave, or cooled in a fridge, to ease headaches and relieve sore eyes.
Larq Movement Stainless Steel Bottle
This stylish stainless-steel bottle will keep travellers hydrated when on the move. As well as having a cool, minimalist look, it has a built-in V-C LED function, which works to clean the bottle and purify water at the same time, so adventurers can always have pure water anywhere, anytime.
Brodie Cashmere Bed Socks
For passengers on a long car journey, these decadent, cashmere socks mean they can kick of their shoes and hunker down in comfort. The sustainable British luxury cashmere brand is a female-founded, Yorkshire-based and eco-conscious label putting a modern twist on traditional cashmere pieces. Keeping feet toasty, these are the ultimate feel-good accessory.
Bill Amberg Jurassic World Backpack
Not only is this a practical investment for any traveller, but Bill Amberg’s handcrafted leather bag is also the same accessory chosen to play a starring role in new film Jurassic World Dominion (it was selected by costume designer Joanna Johnston for Dr. Ellie Sattler’s daily backpack, as portrayed by Laura Dern).
Each bag is handcrafted in the UK using centuries-old hand-crafting techniques. The studio uses lightweight, vegetable-tanned drummed shoulder leather which is both durable and full of character. The natural oils in the hide itself help make it robust and water-resistant – ideal for action-packed adventures. What’s more, due to the quality and nature of the material, this bag will look better the more it is used.
Norwegian Rain Unisex Raincho Coat
Make sure your loved one keeps warm and dry – no matter what the weather – with this practical raincoat by Norwegian Rain. The company was established in Bergen (Norway) by business graduate Alexander Helle. The idea was to create tailored rainwear with a sartorial elegance. The Raincho is a riff on the traditional see-through poncho. Instead, it is a sculptural, Japanese inspired unisex garment that belts up to be feminine and quirky, or left loose to be bold and drapey. A cashmere-lined collar, hood and a selection of pockets add to its desirability.
Briggs & Riley Packing Cubes
Set to revolutionise the way nomads pack their luggage, these cubes will help organise clothes, and keep items tidy and separate when on the go. Ideal for regular stop-offs, and suited to small spaces, they even mean that no unpacking is required – you can just lift out the cubes and put them straight into drawers.
£55 for a three-piece set, briggs-riley.co.uk
Gleneagles Berwick Travel Bag
Drawing inspiration from the golden age of railway travel, the handcrafted leather Berwick bag from Gleneagles – Scotland’s iconic country-hotel – is perfect for weekend breaks, short journeys or as an extra piece of luggage on longer trips. Designed in-house by Ennismore Design Studio, it has been created by two of the UK’s finest leather goods manufacturers; Tusting and Launer London, famed for producing HM Queen Elizabeth II’s signature handbag. With ample space to carry all the essentials, the bag features custom branded hardware and a detachable long strap for ease of carrying on a quick escape.
£595, Gleneagles’ online shop
YETI Roadie 24 Hard Cooler Box, 24L
Set to be an essential on any road trip, this compact cooler box is vital for keeping drinks and snacks cool and fresh. It is also slim enough to squeeze behind a car’s front seats – so it is always within easy reach – and is tall enough to accommodate bottles.
Wolf & Willa Tiger Tote Bag at Aspiga
Keeping things stylish when on the road is easy with this silk velvet bag by Wolf and Willa, available at Aspiga. Large enough to fill with everyday essentials, and perfect to grab and go at each pit-stop, the tote even has its own travel credentials: each one is crafted by hand and made in an atelier in Istanbul. Wolf & Willa is a small female-owned business, focusing on offering artisan-made goods usings skills handed down from generation to generation.