burning man

What To Pack For Burning Man

Deciding what to pack for Burning Man can be a daunting task. Let us take the sting out of it with this comprehensive list. We’ve included everything you’ll need to survive your upcoming burn.

pack for burning man

1. What personal items to pack for Burning Man

  • Burning Man ticket(s) and vehicle pass – if you didn’t pay for shipping, have your Will Call collection number handy
  • ID
  • Water bottle and/or camelbacks
  • Dust goggles
  • Dust mask
  • Eye mask
  • Ear plugs
  • A few large tubs of coconut oil
  • Sunscreen
  • Pharmaceutical lip balm (preferably with sunblock in it)
  • Nasal spray
  • Eye drops/contact lens solution
  • Multiple packets of wet wipes and/or baby wipes
  • Multiple bottles of hand sanitiser
  • A large pack of toilet roll
  • A lightweight, quick dry towel
  • Dioralyte/Pedialyte sachets
  • Vitamin C sachets
  • Tangle teaser for inevitable playa dreads
  • Vinegar! Wash your feet with it every night to prevent playa foot
  • Nail brush, nail file and cuticle trimmer
  • Tweezers and scissors
  • Dry shampoo
  • Actual shampoo and conditioner (not that you’ll have the luxury of using this much)
  • Shower gel
  • Toothbrush and toothpaste
  • Face cleanser and moisturiser
  • Face toner or mist (you’ll be VERY grateful for this)
  • Razor and shaving foam
  • Sanitary towels/tampons
  • Deodorant
  • Makeup and face/body decorating items like paints, gems and glitter
  • Makeup brushes, glue to apply face/body art and any other artistic paraphernalia deemed necessary to make you look gorgeous
  • Needle and thread

burning man

2. What equipment to pack for Burning Man

  • Batteries – I would recommend picking up a big pack of spares
  • Headlamp (absolutely necessary)
  • Flash light
  • ZIPTIES (trust me) and duct tape
  • Spare gas canister (or else be sure to top up your tank very often!)
  • Adaptor(s) – you will have access to power points if you are staying in an RV or with a themed camp
  • Camera – camera charger, spare camera battery, memory card, tripod & other accessories
  • Phone charger and/or battery pack – if you plan on using your phone
  • Car charger for your phone
  • Bike(s)
  • Bike lights (absolutely necessary)
  • Bike decor (optional)
  • Tent(s) – I would recommend one for sleeping and another kids-sized one for storing food, utensils and other miscellaneous things like loo roll
  • Air mattress – Invest! You’ll be sleeping on this for 10 nights in the middle of a desert and you’ll be VERY grateful for it
  • Pump to inflate air mattress
  • Pillow(s)
  • Sleeping bag(s)
  • Battery powered lanterns, fairy lights or other ‘space lighting’
  • A tub for cleaning feet
  • A BIG cooler
  • Pots, pans, cooking spoon, strainer, chopping board, kitchen knife, can opener
  • Ziplock bags (small and big)
  • Plates, bowls, knives, forks, spoons (the reusable plastic type or paper/wood which can be burned is best)
  • A large roll of heavy duty black sacks – separate your rubbish as you go. Burnable, non-burnable and recycling
  • A funnel
  • Snap-top storage boxes to kept the playa dust off your clothes (optional, depending on how fussy you are about your stuff)
  • A CUP (do not forget this and try to find a unique one, it will come everywhere with you)
  • Tupperware for storing chopped fruit and other foods
  • Folding chairs and table (optional if you’re staying with a themed camp)
  • Rebar or extra long tent stakes (to make sure your tent doesn’t blow away during wild winds commonly found on the playa)

burning man

3. What consumables to pack for Burning Man

Be strategic when it comes to your food shop, try to plan your meals, snacks and drinks before you arrive at the supermarket. Bearing in mind everything that arrives with you to the playa either needs to be consumed, gifted, burned or taken out with you. Target, Walmart or a camping store like REI co.op is the best place to stock up.

We brought a mixture of fresh foods and nonperishables. Everyones taste and requirements are different, but here is what our shopping list looked like:

  • Watermelon x 2
  • Pineapple x 2
  • Bunch of bananas
  • Bag of apples
  • Bag of chopped broccoli x 2
  • Bag of carrots x 2
  • Avocado x 6
  • Cucumber x 2
  • Bag of tomatoes x 2
  • Garlic
  • Lemons x 10
  • Honey
  • Ginger
  • Tub of steel cut oats
  • Box of wholemeal pasta x 2
  • Large bag of brown rice
  • Bag of sweet potato
  • Box of 12 x cliff bars
  • Corn crackers
  • Rice crackers
  • Hemp crackers
  • Dried fruit – cranberries, blueberries, figs and prunes
  • Nuts – brazil, pecan and cashew
  • Dried edamame beans
  • Dried green beans
  • Dried mixed vegetable crisps
  • Jar of Nutella
  • Jar of peanut butter
  • Jar of cashew butter
  • Tinned beans – kidney beans, black beans, butter beans and chickpeas
  • Tinned tuna and salmon x 4
  • Tinned sweetcorn x 2
  • Tinned spinach x 2
  • Salt, pepper, cinnamon
  • More coconut oil
  • Large (plastic) bottle of vodka x 2
  • Large (plastic) bottle of whiskey
  • Sparkling water with lime x 6
  • Coconut water x 2
  • 20 gallons (75 litres) of water PER PERSON

At Burning Man we learnt a foodie tip. The camping store REI stocks a brand called ‘Backpackers Pantry’ offering 30 different types of readymade, moderately healthy, microwavable meals. We’ll definitely be availing of this convenience next year! Have a look at their selection HERE.

burning man

As you can tell, we ate pretty much vegetarian for the duration of the festival but many people precook chicken breasts or boil eggs which they store in zip locked bags beneath the ice in their coolers.

Remember to pick up some disinfectant wipes and a spray bottle so that you can make up a vinegar and water solution for cleaning your cooking equipment.

4. What medical items to pack for Burning Man

  • FIRST AID KIT (Essential! Pick one up before you leave)
  • Imodium
  • A painkiller like Tylenol or Advil
  • Allergy or anti-inflammatory meds
  • Flu meds
  • Electrolytes (previously mentioned but you can never have enough)
  • Multivitamin
  • Plasters
  • Pads for blisters
  • Aloe vera gel
  • More sunblock
  • Super hydrating foot cream
  • Vaseline
  • Tropical antibiotic (if you want to be over-prepared)
  • Prescriptions
  • Birth control

5. What clothing to pack for Burning Man

  • LOTS of socks (trust me on this one)
  • Functional underwear and costume underwear
  • Scarves and/or hats
  • Backpack and/or pouch
  • Sunglasses
  • Clothing for extremes of hot and cold – Bikinis, termals, fleece
  • Clothing for lounge days – leggings, yoga pants, loose t-shirts
  • Flip flops
  • Functional boots and costume boots
  • PJ’s or whatever you like to sleep in
  • Decorative body lights. LED’s, glow sticks, fancy light-up costume pieces (essential)
  • Costume jewellery, belts, bags, flowers, fishnets, pearls, leather harnesses, umberellas, wigs, chains, fringing and whatever else will be accessorising your outfits
  • The skies the limit when it comes to what you wear (or don’t wear) at Burning Man. Go wild, use your imaginative, be unique and have fun.

burning man

6. Don’t forget your gifts!

Make sure to pack extra food, drinks or whatever else you plan to gift on the playa and you’re all set!

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