How to Choose the Best Travel Backpack for Europe 2019

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Looking for the best travel backpack for Europe? Look no further! Here are our top picks for you!

For years, I traveled with a low-quality backpack around the world. I don’t even remember the brand because it was really not a good product.

I would feel my back and shoulder easily and when the straps were finally torn-off, I knew I should have bought another backpack long before that.

It took me long enough but when that happened, I realized buying a high-quality backpack was an investment I had to do for my body.

That’s when I bought the best travel backpack for Europe I could find, the Osprey Farpoint 40l. Later on, I learned from fellow travelers this was in fact one of the best travel backpacks for men. What?!

Yes, you read it right.

This model is actually designed for men, but I loved it so much I didn’t stop using it. That was over four years ago, and I still have it.

And it is as good as new.

Best travel backpacks for Europe

Well, I’ll talk more about this backpack later in the post, but first, let me tell you what else you’ll find below.

We created this comprehensive list with the best travel backpacks for women and men in different categories.

By that I mean traveling backpacks, hiking backpacks, daypacks, wheeled backpacks, laptop and camera backpacks. Yes, every category to help you choose the best one for your needs.

What are the best travel backpacks for Europe?

Curious to know the answer to this question? Read on!

Comparison table of the best travel backpacks for Europe

In this comparison chart, you’ll find a small description of the backpacks I’ll mention below.

BackpackDescriptionSee price
Green Osprey Fairview backpack for womenBest carry-on for women: Osprey Fairview
-40l
-Perfect for urban style, backpacking, international travel
See on Amazon
Blue female backpack Kelty redwingKelty Redwing
-40l
-Perfect for backpacking, hiking, international travel
See on REI
Osprey farpoint 40l is the best travel backpack for menBest carry-on for men: Osprey Farpoint
-40l
-Perfect for urban style, backpacking, international travel
See on REI
Red eBags TLS mother lode weekender convertible 54leBags TLS Mother Lode Convertible
-54l
-Perfect for urban style, backpacking, international travel
See on Amazon
Blue female backpack Kelty redwingKelty Redwing
-44l
-Perfect for backpacking, hiking, trekking, international travel
See on Amazon
Green Osprey Fairview backpack for womenBest backpack for women: Osprey Fairview
-55l
-Perfect for urban style, backpacking, international travel
See on Amazon
Osprey farpoint 55l is the best travel backpack for menBest backpack for men: Osprey Farpoint
-55l
-Perfect for urban style, backpacking, international travel
See on Amazon
Kelty Revol 50l, great hiking backpack for Europe #europeKelty Revol
-50l
-Perfect for backpacking, international travel, trekking, hiking
See on Amazon
Osprey Aura AG 65l travel backpackOsprey Aura
-65l
-Perfect for backpacking, international travel, trekking, hiking
See on Amazon
Deuter Futura Pro 36l hiking backpackBest hiking backpack for women: Deuter Pro Futura
-36l
-Perfect for backpacking, international travel, trekking, hiking
See on Amazon
Osprey Atmos 65l is the best travel backpack for menOsprey Atmos AG
-65l
-Perfect for backpacking, hiking, international travel, trekking
See on Amazon
Deuter Act 34l hiking backpackBest hiking backpack for men: Deuter Act Trail Pro
-34l
-Perfect for backpacking, international travel, trekking, hiking
See on Amazon
Osprey Nova is the best travel daypack for womenBest daypack for women: Osprey Nova
-33l
-Perfect for backpacking, international travel, urban style, daypack
See on Amazon
Osprey Nebula is the best travel daypack for menBest daypack for men: Osprey Nebula
-33l
-Perfect for backpacking, international travel, urban style, daypack
See on Amazon
Herschel Little America daypack for EuropeHerschel Little America
-25l
-Perfect for travel, urban style, daypack
See on Amazon
Jack Wolfskin Velocity best daypack for EuropeJack Wolfskin Velocity
-12l
-Perfect for travel, urban style, daypack
See on Amazon
eBags TLS mother lode rolling weekender is a great carry-on backpack for menBest wheeled backpack: eBags TLS Mother Lode Rolling
-48l
-Perfect for travel, international backpacking
See on Amazon
Osprey Sojourn 80l, best wheeled backpack for traveling in EuropeOsprey Sojourn
-80l
-Perfect for international backpacking, travel
See on Amazon
Nomatic 40 travel backpackNomatic
-40l
-Perfect for urban style, international backpacking, travel
See on Nomatic
Black laptop backpack from Everki TitanEverki Titan
-40l
-Perfect for urban style, international travel, digital nomad style, daypack
See on Amazon
Black camera backpack from LoweproLowepro ProTactic 450
-25l
-Perfect for travel photography, digital nomad style
See on Amazon
Black camera backpack from ManfrottoManfrotto Advanced Befree
-25l
-Perfect for travel photography, digital nomad style
See on Amazon

Best Carry-on Backpacks for Europe

These are the best carry-on backpacks for Europe for women and men, respectively. But if you’re a female traveler (or male), and a backpack said to be for men/women piques your interest, honestly, just ignore it.

As I said above, I’ve been using a male backpack for years now and I love it.

Best travel backpack for women – Osprey Fairview 40l

Osprey Fairview 40l, best travel backpack for women

This 40l backpack is lightweight and complies with most of the EU airlines’ carry-on dimensions. So if you’re going to travel a lot with budget airlines, this luggage will suit your needs as you won’t have to put it in the hold most of the time. (But read the new Ryanair rules. They keep changing them.)

The Fairview 40l is front-loading and has a decent internal capacity. The main compartment is spacious, padded on the back with air system holes, and it also has compression straps to keep your packing cubes in place.

There is a large mesh pocket on the front flap which is excellent to keep your electronics grid, toiletries bag or dirty clothes organized, for example.

The front compartment has a laptop sleeve and another large mesh pocket for documents or a tablet, Kindle, etc.

There is a scratch-free pocket for sunglasses on the top of the backpack and two pockets for water bottles on the front, but if your bottle is soft it might get squeezed because the lower compression strap is right on top of it.

On the other hand, the shoulder straps and hip belt can be tucked away. Therefore, you can carry your backpack as a shoulder bag or suitcase.

It’s important to note that Osprey has an almighty guarantee!

Perfect for: women who want a versatile carry-on backpack with decent capacity. Women who don’t need many small pockets, just a few large compartments for when they use packing cubes and own pouches to pack most of the things. Women who want a really comfortable backpack.

Click here to check the latest price and more reviews on Amazon.

Osprey Fairview pros:

  • Made especially for the female body
  • Great colors
  • Excellent zip-away harness and hip belt system
  • Lockable zippers

Osprey Farview cons:

  • Doesn’t have many pockets for small things
  • The removable shoulder strap is not padded


Kelty Redwing 40l backpack for women

Kelty Redwing 40l, backpack for women

This Kelty Redwing has one pocket in the lid for small items and a stash pocket in the front which is excellent to hold a lightweight jacket or hoodie.

The front compartment has an organizer for mobile phones and maps, while on the external side of its flap, you have a hide-away daisy chain handle to easily move it around.

The suspension system of the Kelty Redwing 40l is designed for the female body and it has a padded back panel as well as shoulder straps and a hip belt. The latter can be removed, by the way.

It also has a hydration sleeve which can be used as a laptop sleeve because it’s padded too.

Perfect for: Women who want a comfortable carry-on backpack for travel in Europe, but also want to take it on a hiking vacation. Women who prefer multiple pockets for small items and a top-loading backpack.

Click here to check the latest price and more reviews on REI.

Kelty Redwing 40l Pros:

  • Lightweight
  • Side and top-loading
  • Comfortable
  • Beautiful design

Kelty Redwing 40l Cons:

  • No pockets in the hip belt
  • Carry strap isn’t padded
  • Harness can’t be hidden away
  • No rain cover


Best travel backpack for men – Osprey Farpoint 40l

Osprey Farpoint 40l, best travel backpack for traveling in Europe
Osprey Farpoint 40l, best travel backpack for Europe

Well, as said before this backpack is my favorite one of this list.

But I also know plenty of female bloggers who use this Osprey model.

This lightweight 40l travel backpack complies with most of the EU airlines’ carry-on dimensions. Perfect if you plan to travel a lot using budget airlines.

The Farpoint 40l is front-loading and has a pretty decent internal capacity.

The main compartment is spacious, padded on the back with air system holes, and it also has compression straps to keep your packing cubes in place.

There is a large mesh pocket on the front flap which is fantastic to keep your electronics grid, toiletries bag or dirty clothes organized, for example. The front compartment has a laptop sleeve and another large mesh pocket for documents or a tablet, Kindle, etc.

There is a scratch-free pocket on the top, which you can use for sunglasses (but I use it for liquids when traveling by plane), and two pockets for water bottles in the front, but if your bottle is soft it might get squeezed because the lower compression strap is right on top of it.

The shoulder straps and hip belt are padded and comfortable to wear, and in case you want to carry your Farpoint by the top or side grab handle, you can just tuck away the harness and hip belt. In this case, there’s also a detachable shoulder strap.

It’s important to note that Osprey has an almighty guarantee!

Perfect for: Men (or women) who want a high-quality backpack with great capacity. Men who are looking for a complete, yet comfortable and simple backpack for Europe.

Click to read reviews on REI.

Osprey Farpoint 40l pros:

  • Excellent design
  • High-quality
  • Very comfortable to wear
  • Great zip-away harness and hip belt system
  • Lockable zippers

Osprey Farpoint 40l cons:

  • Doesn’t have many pockets for small things
  • The removable shoulder strap is not padded
  • When the main compartment is full, it’s difficult to close the loaded front compartment
  • Laptop compartment in the front, not ideal for weight distribution
  • No rain cover


eBags TLS Mother Lode Weekender Convertible 54l backpack for men

eBags TLS mother lode weekender is a great carry-on backpack for men

The TLS Mother Lode 54l is durable and amazing to organize small things as it has multiple zippered pockets in the front compartment – which is very spacious, by the way.

On the top of the backpack is a pocket that can be used to keep your carry-on liquids so you can easily access them at the security check.

The main compartment is secured by 4 external compression straps and is double zippered. It has two internal compression straps to keep things in place and a small removable divider, to avoid that everything shifts to the bottom of the bag.

Still in the main compartment, the large mesh pocket on the opening flap is ideal to keep dirty clothes, for example.

Also, a removable pouch right on the top of the backpack is great to keep small items separated and easy to access, such as toiletries.

The laptop sleeve is on the back, which offers more safety because it’s hidden. Needless to say that it’s much more comfortable to carry the laptop closer to your body.

In addition, there is a small zippered pocket on the front of the backpack for tickets and passports.

The adjustable and removable shoulder straps offer support and comfort, although the hip belt isn’t padded.

Perfect for: men who really need a lot of capacity as well as multiple pockets to store small things separately in a carry-on. Men who might be staying in a hostel and don’t want to let the laptop in plain sight.

Click here to check the latest price and more reviews on Amazon.

eBags TLS Mother Lode Weekender 54l pros:

  • Great organizational features
  • Huge capacity
  • Multiple grip straps make it ideal for airplane lifting
  • Low profile laptop storage

eBags TLS Mother Lode Weekender 54l cons:

  • No rain cover
  • No padded hip belt
  • The harness is not padded enough


Best Checked Backpacks for Europe

Kelty Redwing 44l backpack for women

Kelty Redwing 44l, great hiking backpack for Europe #europe
Kelty Redwing 44l is a great travel backpack for Europe and beyond

The Kelty Redwing 44l has a water bottle pocket, which is easily reached when you’re wearing it. Great feature compared to most backpacks.

It can be either top or front-loaded, you just need to unbuckle the side compression straps to open the front flap almost completely. The main compartment has a hydration sleeve that can also be used as a laptop sleeve.

Many travelers use the Kelty Redwing 44l as a carry-on, but since it’s a few inches bigger than the carry-on dimensions, there is a risk you’ll have to put it in the hold. Therefore, I added it to this category instead of the carry-on backpacks.

Perfect for: women who are going on a longer backpack trip around Europe and prefer a backpack with many pockets. Also, women who want a versatile backpack to be used for hiking trips. Women who want a gorgeous backpack. (Look at this color!)

Click here to check the latest price and more reviews on Amazon.

Kelty Redwing 44l pros:

  • It has many pockets
  • Front and top-loading
  • Comfortable
  • Beautiful design

Kelty Redwing 44l cons:

  • No lockable zippers
  • No pockets in the hip belt
  • No rain cover


Best travel backpack for Europe (and beyond) Osprey Fairview 55l

Osprey Fairview 55l, best travel backpack for women
Osprey Fairview 55l, best travel backpack for women

The Fairview 55l has padded grab handles on the top and the sides so you can easily grab your backpack off airport carousels, for example.

This panel loading backpack has a spacious main compartment and padded back with air system holes. It also has compression straps in and outside to keep your packing cubes and daypack in place.

Yes, it also comes with a daypack. The whole capacity (55l) is actually divided between them. Therefore, the main backpack is 42l while the daypack is 13l, totalizing 55l.

The 13l daypack has all the organization you’ll need plus a laptop sleeve and another large mesh pocket for documents or a tablet, Kindle, etc. It also has a scratch-free pocket (for sunglasses) and two mesh pockets for water bottles.

Needless to say that this 42l backpack with a detachable daypack is a top-notch option because it’s 2-in1 and has lots of useful features.

As for the daypack, it can be attached to the main backpack in two ways: like in the photo above, or to the shoulder straps while you’re carrying it (like a kangaroo).

It’s important to note that Osprey has an almighty guarantee!

Perfect for: women who want a versatile backpack for a longer trip around Europe and can’t pack light, or will travel during winter/ cold seasons and need more capacity. Women who could make good use of a daypack too.

Click here to check the latest price and more reviews on Amazon.

Osprey Farview 55l pros:

  • Made especially for the female body
  • Great internal capacity
  • Great zip-away harness and hip belt system
  • Zip-off daypack
  • Kangaroo-style daypack attachment

Osprey Farview 55l cons:

  • Doesn’t have many pockets for small things
  • No rain cover
  • Lockable zippers


Osprey Farpoint 55l backpack for men

Osprey Farpoint 40l, best travel backpack for traveling in Europe
Osprey Farpoint 55l, best travel backpack for traveling in Europe

The Osprey Farpoint is great! The feature I like the most about this model is the detachable 13l daypack.

This convenient daypack is secured to the main backpack by two compression straps and a zipper. Like the main bag, it also has a suspension system on the back with padded shoulder straps and chest strap.

This lightweight Farpoint is a front-loading backpack and has a huge internal capacity.

The main compartment is equipped with two compression straps and, on the front flap, there is a large zippered mesh pocket perfect to pack your toiletries bag or electronics grid, for example.

This backpack is also convertible and you can tuck away the harness and hip belt, and carry it by one of the two reinforced padded handles on the top and on the side of it.

Moreover, if you need to lash additional gear to the outside there are multiple daisy chain points to do so.

The daypack has a small padded laptop sleeve and a zippered mesh pocket, apart from the scratch-free pocket on the front and two mesh pockets for water bottles.

The main backpack is 42l while the daypack is 13l, so 55l.

It’s important to note that Osprey has an almighty guarantee!

Perfect for: men who are going on a long trip around Europe, so need the extra capacity. Men who could make good use of a daypack.

Click here to check the latest price and more reviews on Amazon.

Osprey Farpoint 55l pros:

  • Great internal capacity
  • Great zip-away harness and hip belt system
  • Zip-off daypack
  • Kangaroo-style daypack attachment

Osprey Farpoint 55l cons:

  • Doesn’t have many pockets for small things
  • No rain cover
  • Lockable zippers


Kelty Revol 50l travel backpack for men

Kelty Revol 50l, great hiking backpack for Europe #europe

The Kelty Revol 50l has an excellent suspension system and is completely padded.

The hip belt moves vertically to adjust to your body movements. This, together with the lumbar support, offers great weight distribution and support.

Let’s go to the pockets. Well, it has one front pocket organizer, pockets on and under the lid, two on the sides, a stash pocket on the front, and two pockets on the hip belt. That’s a lot of organization!

The hydration system is also great because it’s separated from the main compartment, so if you need to refill it, no need to dig deep to find it.

The water bottle pocket is easily reached when you’re wearing it, which is a plus compared to many backpacks.

Perfect for: men who are traveling to cold destinations or going to be on the road for a while and need that extra space. Men who need a backpack for a backpacking trip, but also want a spacious pack for hiking.

Click here to check the latest price and more reviews on Amazon.

Kelty Revol 50l pros:

  • Lumbar padding
  • Kinesis™ Hip belt
  • Great capacity
  • Comfortable to wear

Kelty Revol 50l cons:

  • No lockable zippers
  • No rain cover
  • A bit heavy
  • No compression straps


Best Hiking Backpacks for Europe

Osprey Aura AG 65l backpack for women

Osprey Aura AG 65l travel backpack
Ideal for long backpacking trips

This versatile backpack is ideal for trekking and hiking vacations as you can pack all the equipment you need into it, after all, it holds 65l.

It’s also ideal for long backpacking trips.

The Aura AG comes in 3 sizes and it’s very important you choose the size that most adjusts to your torso. The capacity naturally varies in each one of those sizes as follows: XS 60l, S 62l, and M 65l.

There are a couple of zippered pockets on the removable lid to store small items or documents. Of course, without the lid, the backpack becomes a little smaller.

There are two frontal pockets and two other pockets on the hip belt.

It’s important to note that Osprey has an almighty guarantee!

Perfect for: women who want a comfortable and large backpack especially adjusted to a female body. Women who are going on an adventure trip around Europe (hiking/trekking). Or women who just can’t pack light (in fact, pack way more than they should) and are going on a longer vacation.

Click here to check the latest price and more reviews on Amazon.

Osprey Aura AG 65l pros:

  • Detachable rain cover
  • Adjusted to the female body
  • Great internal capacity
  • A good number of pockets
  • Highly adjustable harness and hip belt

Osprey Aura AG 65l cons:

  • Hip belt is a bit too big
  • Clip to hang tent/roll-up mats is too small


Best women’s hiking backpack – Deuter Futura Pro 36l

Deuter Futura Pro 36l hiking backpack

The Deuter Futura Pro 36l has six external pockets: two zippered pockets on each side, two on the hip belt, one on the lid, and one on the front for additional space. One internal pocket is also available to store valuables.

Besides these pockets and the main compartment, there is a bottom compartment with a removable separator to pack heavy things.

One very handy feature of the Deuter Futura Pro is that it has a stretch compartment for wet clothes, so if it rains during your hike you have a place to carry your wet clothes around.

Perfect for: women going on a short adventure trip, such as a day hike, so don’t necessarily need a large backpack for that.

Click here to check the latest price and more reviews on Amazon.

Deuter Futura Pro 36 pros:

  • Detachable rain cover
  • Durability
  • Lightweight
  • Comfortable

Deuter Futura Pro 36 cons:

  • The full-loaded hydration sleeve takes a lot of space


Osprey Atmos AG 65l backpack for men

Osprey Atmos AG 65l travel backpack

The Osprey Atmos AG 65l has completely adjustable harnesses. To adjust it, simply use the short red cord on the backside. The load support it offers is impressive.

Moreover, this model comes in 3 sizes and it’s very important you choose the size that most adjusts to your torso. The capacity naturally varies in each one of those sizes as it follows: S 62l, M 65l, and L 68l.

There are a couple of zippered pockets on the removable lid to store small items or documents. Two other frontal pockets and two pockets on the hip belt compose this backpack.

Needless to say that this backpack is ideal for a heavy hiking vacation because it can easily carry your equipment, sleeping bag, gears, clothes, and food. All in one.

It’s important to note that Osprey has an almighty guarantee!

Perfect for: men who are going on a hiking trip and need a very spacious backpack for plenty of equipment. Men whose torso is long and need a comfortable backpack that fits perfectly.

Click here to check the latest price and more reviews on Amazon.

Osprey Atmos AG 65l pros:

  • Detachable rain cover
  • Great internal capacity
  • A good number of pockets
  • Highly adjustable torso length
  • Very comfortable

Osprey Atmos AG 65l cons:

  • Clip to hang tent/roll-up mats is too small
  • A bit heavy


Best men’s hiking backpack – Deuter Act Trail Pro 34l

Deuter Act 34l hiking backpack

This Deuter has a decent ventilation back system and a fully padded construction making it more comfortable to hike. The shoulder straps and hip belt are also padded.

This backpack is top-loading, but there is a zippered side opening to reach lower packed items too.

There are 7 external pockets: two zippered pockets on the side and on the front of the bag, two on the hip belt, one on the lid, one water bottle pouch, and one stash pocket on the front for additional space.

One internal pocket under the lid is also available to store valuables, for example.

Perfect for: men who are going on a hiking trip and need a versatile and lightweight backpack.

Click here to check the latest price and more reviews on Amazon.

Deuter Act Trail Pro 34l pros:

  • Detachable rain cover
  • Great compression options
  • Lightweight
  • Comfortable
  • Ergonomic

Deuter Act Trail Pro 34l cons

  • The full-loaded hydration sleeve takes a lot of space
  • No adjustable torso
  • Small pockets in the hip belt


Best Daypacks for Europe

Best women’s daypack – Osprey Nova 33l

Osprey Nova 33l, best daypack for traveling in Europe

The Nova 33l has a small front zippered scratch-free pocket for sunglasses, then it has a compartment with organization features in the front, and lastly, it has a main compartment with a large zippered mesh pocket on the front flap.

Besides these pockets, it has a TSA approved laptop sleeve in the back. Yes, if you like backpacks with lots of pockets, this Osprey is perfect for you.

So I’d say that the Osprey Nova 33L is the perfect daypack for Europe if you’re planning to bring some gears and office material with you, such as laptop, agenda, travel journal, to name a few.

It’s hands-down the best daypack for Europe.

Oh, and as always, keep in mind that Osprey has an almighty guarantee!

Perfect for: women who want a spacious daypack not only for travel but also to use on the commute and need to carry a laptop as well as lunch, snacks, notebook, etc.

Click here to check the latest price and more reviews on Amazon.

Osprey Nova 33l pros:

  • Designed for women’s bodies
  • Great organizational features
  • High-quality backpack
  • Many colors to choose from
  • Laptop sleeve at the back

Osprey Nova 33l cons:

  • The hip belt is not padded
  • No lockable zippers
  • No rain cover


Best men’s daypack – Osprey Nebula 34l

Osprey Nebula 33l, best daypack for traveling in Europe

The Nebula 34l has a small front zippered scratch-free pocket for sunglasses, then it has great organization features in the front compartment.

Also, it has a sizeable main compartment with a large zippered mesh pocket on the front flap, and a TSA approved laptop sleeve in the back. Yes, I know. It’s a lot of pockets. I love that!

I’d say that the Osprey Nebula 34l is the best daypack for Europe if you’re planning to bring some gears and office material with you, such as laptop, agenda, travel journal, to name a few.

It’s important to note that Osprey has an almighty guarantee!

Perfect for: men who want a spacious daypack not only for travel but also to use on the commute and need to carry a laptop as well as lunch, snacks, notebook, etc.

Check the latest price and more reviews on Amazon.

Osprey Nebula 34l pros:

  • Stands upright
  • Great organizational features
  • High-quality backpack
  • Laptop sleeve at the back

Osprey Nebula 34l cons:

  • No rain cover
  • The hip belt is not padded
  • No lockable zippers


Herschel Little America 25l

Herschel Little America daypack for Europe

This daypack has an internal media pocket with a cable outlet as well as a padded and fleece laptop sleeve. In addition to these features, there is one external zippered pocket with a key clip.

Also, the back panel and shoulder straps are padded to offer more comfort.

This Herschell will basically serve you very well as a daypack while traveling and in your hometown.

The Herschel Little America is inspired by classic mountaineering packs. This stylish unisex backpack is an excellent option if you want to blend in with locals while traveling in Europe, although I assume it’s pretty common in the US, Canada, and Australia too.

I particularly love the simple design of this backpack. It totally transforms the outfit into a cool street style.

Perfect for: people who want a stylish daypack not only for travel but also to use on the commute. People who don’t necessarily need a sturdy backpack with many pockets.

Click here to check the latest price and more reviews on Amazon.

Herschel Little America 25l pros:

  • Plenty of designs/prints to choose from
  • Multifunctional
  • Beautiful and stylish design
  • Laptop sleeve

Herschel Little America 25l cons:

  • Laptop sleeve could be more padded
  • Not many pockets
  • No internal organization features


Jack Wolfskin Velocity 12l

Jack Wolfskin Velocity best daypack for Europe

This Jack Wolfskin daypack is practical and useful. The back is padded to offer more comfort while wearing it and you can easily adjust the height of the chest strap by sliding it along the shoulder straps.

In the two side mesh pockets, we put our water bottles, which also fit in the helmet sleeve.

Yes, it has a helmet sleeve. This daypack is actually designed for bikers, but my husband uses it as a daypack when traveling in Europe and it works perfectly!

Perfect for: people who want a daypack to carry basic things and don’t need extra protection for a camera, for example. People who want a light hiking daypack.

Click here to check the latest price and more reviews on Amazon.

Jack Wolfskin Velocity 12l pros:

  • Rain cover
  • High-quality daypack
  • Plenty of colors to choose from
  • Reflectors
  • Attachment for LED light

Jack Wolfskin Velocity 12l cons:

  • No padded hip belt
  • Harness’ straps are too long
  • Annoying to have to unbuckle side straps to completely open the main compartment
  • Ventilation system doesn’t work very well in really hot weather


Best wheeled backpacks for Europe – eBags TLS Mother Lode Rolling Weekender 48l

eBags TLS mother lode rolling weekender is a great carry-on backpack for men

This eBags Rolling Weekender has a main compartment secured by 4 external compression straps and double zippers. It has two internal compression straps to keep things in place and a small removable divider, to avoid that everything shifts to the bottom of the bag.

Still in the main compartment, a large mesh pocket on the opening flap can keep dirty clothes, for example, while a removable pouch right on the top of the backpack is ideal to keep small items separated and easily accessible, such as toiletries.

The laptop sleeve is on the back, which offers more safety because it’s hidden. Needless to say that it’s much more comfortable to carry the laptop closer to your body.

In addition, there is a small zippered pocket on the front of the backpack for tickets and passports.

The adjustable and removable shoulder straps offer support and comfort, although the hip belt isn’t padded.

Moreover, there are three padded grab handles placed on the bag so you can easily grab it out of the trunk, for example.

This bunch of features makes the TLS Mother Lode Rolling the best wheeled backpack for travel.

Perfect for: people who want the flexibility to choose how to travel. People packing a larger load or just can’t pack light. If you’re planning to use it as wheeled luggage, no problem, but if you do plan to wear it as a backpack I’d only recommend it if you have a strong body structure.

Click here to check the latest price and more reviews on Amazon.

eBags TLS Mother Lode Rolling Weekender 48l pros:

  • Wheels can be covered when it’s worn like a backpack
  • Expandable zipper
  • Low profile laptop storage

eBags TLS Mother Lode Rolling Weekender 48l cons:

  • No rain cover
  • No padded hip belt
  • Heavy when worn as a backpack
  • In-line wheels instead of a spinner


Osprey Sojourn 80l

Osprey Sojourn 80l, best wheeled backpack for traveling in Europe

The Sojourn 80l has a complete zip away torso-adjustable harness, which accommodates multiple sizes of torsos, and a hip belt.

The back panel, as well as the shoulder straps, have an air ventilating system with mesh all over it. The suspension system gives you more comfort while carrying it as a backpack.

The wheels and chassis are made of durable polymer plastic and can handle almost any surface, proving it’s a good wheeled backpack for Europe and its cobblestones streets.

The frame goes all the way around the back of the backpack, forming a rectangle, which stabilizes the bag while you roll it. Moreover, the two-bar-handle can be adjusted in different heights.

The main compartment has two mesh pockets on the front flap to keep your electronics grid or dirty clothes, for example. There are two other pockets here, one on each side of this compartment.

Now to the compartment itself. It’s really spacious and you can load a lot there, especially because of the compression straps that also help you to keep things organized.

Let’s move on to the outside. The Sojourn 80l has several daisy chains and loops on the outside to hang your gear. Regarding the pockets, there is a small top pocket for liquids and small things, for example.

Perfect for: people who want flexibility, but yet want to primarily use it as wheeled luggage. People who are carrying a larger load (or who just can’t pack light). People who plan to go to different kinds of trips around Europe, city trips in general.

Click here to check the latest price and more reviews on Amazon.

Osprey Sojourn 80l pros:

  • It has tall wheels
  • The harness is completely removable, which gives you an extra storage pocket
  • High chassis
  • The main compartment has lockable zippers

Osprey Sojourn 80l cons:

  • No external pockets
  • The wheels aren’t covered when worn as a backpack
  • It’s very heavy to wear as a backpack
  • No laptop sleeve


Best Laptop Travel Backpacks for Europe

Nomatic 40l

Nomatic 40 travel backpack

This laptop travel backpack has plenty of pockets. Seven to be more specific, including a pocket underneath the bag dedicated for shoes, an RFID-safe pocket protected by a lockable zipper, a bunch of organizational features, and a waterproof pocket for a water bottle.

Note that this bag is TSA approved, which means you shouldn’t have to remove your laptop at the security check at the airport, although this is completely up to the officers there.

The main compartment is big and has no extra pockets to maximize its capacity. Also, this backpack has an interesting slick system in the harness that converts it into a duffel bag.

The Nomatic 40l is very functional and if you want plenty of pockets to keep small things organized, this backpack will be an ideal option for you.

Well, so much space, it means it’s a large backpack, which is good, but it can also be annoying because while carrying it as a duffel bag you have to hold it a bit far away from your body.

Perfect for: people who are traveling around Europe with electronics and office materials, such as a laptop, tablet, and notebook, and want to protect their valuables with weather-resistant and RFID material.

Check the latest price and more reviews on Nomatic.

Nomatic 40l pros:

  • It opens in the back, where the laptop and tablet pockets are
  • RFID safe pocket
  • Detachable waist straps with pockets
  • Mesh laundry bag is lightweight

Nomatic 40l cons:

  • If the backpack is fully loaded, it’s difficult to fit the water bottle, especially if there are shoes in the shoe compartment
  • Although it’s mostly made of waterproof material, the front is made of a kind of nylon and gets wet
  • Button system on the duffel strap doesn’t stick buttoned up
  • The hip belt pockets are only suitable for tickets/papers, not mobiles


Everki Titan 40l

Everki Titan 40l laptop backpack

The Everki Titan 40l has plenty of organizational features in the front pocket. It’s ideal for documents and small items. This compartment has some space for a small packing cube too or just accessories.

The main compartment has a felt-lined sleeve to protect tablets and Kindles.

Still in the main compartment, you’ll find two zippered pockets (small and medium) for cables and toiletries, to name a few. Here you can put your packing cubes, too. Not many though.

The last compartment is in the back and it holds the laptop, also felt-lined. There are two multifunctional pockets on the sides, where you can put your water bottle and a stash pocket on the front.

The back panel has a ventilating system and it’s padded as well, as are the shoulder straps, offering more comfort and weight distribution while carrying it totally loaded.

Perfect for: people who are going on short trips and need many electronics and gadgets.

Click here to check the latest price and more reviews on Amazon.

Everki Titan 40l pros:

  • It fits laptops up to 18.4 inches
  • Great organizational features
  • Huge capacity
  • Raincover
  • Comfortable to carry

Everki Titan 40l cons:

  • No hip belt
  • It might be too big for short people
  • Water bottle pocket is difficult to reach
  • No phone holder on the should straps


Best Camera Travel Backpacks for Europe

Lowepro ProTactic 450 AW

Lowepro pro tactic 450 aw camera backpack

This backpack fits two pro DSLRs and 6-8 lenses. It has a laptop sleeve and it comes with a bottle pouch, tripod cup, two cinch straps, and a case that you can use to store your gadgets. The ProTactic 450 AW also fits the DJI Mavic Pro drone.

There are six zippered pockets, three mesh pockets on the laptop sleeve, one zippered pocket under the lid to keep memory cards and small things, and two pockets on each side of the bag.

The padded shoulder straps and the back panel together with the chest straps compose the combo to offer more comfort and weight distribution. The Lowepro ProTactic 450 AW feels very solid and provides great protection for your gear.

It also has plenty of daisy chains to attach your tripod too, for example, but I’d suggest you attach it on the side. That’s because this backpack opens on the back, so if you attach your tripod to the front you won’t be able to lay the backpack down to open it completely.

Perfect for: people who want maximum protection for their photography and filming gear as well as for their laptop.

Click here to check the latest price and more reviews on Amazon.

Lowepro ProTactic 450 AW pros:

  • Shock resistant
  • Customizable
  • Raincover
  • Cool urban look (black and neat)
  • Sturdy backpack

Lowepro ProTactic 450 AW cons:

  • Zippered pockets don’t fit much
  • It’s a bit confusing to customize the main compartment
  • The shoulder straps are little padded


Manfrotto Advanced Befree Backpack

Manfrotto MB MA BP R Advanced rear camera backpack

This Manfrotto backpack has two compartments. The lower one has a protective case for the camera which can be removed and used separately.

This case can carry a compact DSLR with up to three lenses. The front pocket has a laptop (13”)/ tablet sleeves.

This Manfrotto also feels sturdy and it’s well padded on the back, shoulder straps, and hip belt, providing great weight distribution.

There are two stash pockets in the upper compartment as well as a zippered pocket.

The lower compartment has a customizable pouch to organize your photography gears, but if you don’t want to use it as a camera backpack, you can also remove this pouch and connect both upper and lower compartments by unzipping the divider inside. It becomes a daypack then.

The Manfrotto Advanced Rear has four pouches on the outside, two on each side of the backpack, one of them being a tripod pouch. Moreover, there are two pouches for water bottles.

Perfect for: people who want a versatile camera travel backpack for Europe and don’t plan on packing so many gears.

Click here to check the latest price and more reviews on Amazon.

Manfrotto MB MA-BP-R Advanced Read pros:

  • Raincover
  • Cool urban look
  • Comfortable to carry
  • It can be converted into a daypack

Manfrotto MB MA-BP-R Advanced Read cons:

  • External straps are too short
  • Zippered pockets don’t fit many things
  • It’s a bit confusing to set up the main compartment dividers
  • There is a case for one camera only and up to three lenses


Why should you travel with a backpack to Europe?

It’s cheaper:

At first, you’ll spend more to buy your luggage because it has to be of good quality. But it pays off!

It really pays off to buy a decent backpack because you’ll actually save money by not having to purchase a new one every year, for example.

Moreover, some travel backpacks brands I mentioned above have an almighty guarantee.

It’s easier:

Backpacks have more pockets, pouches, and stash pockets than a suitcase.

These features help to keep your things much more organized and in place, meaning it will be easier to find stuff later.

It’s faster:

Imagine you’re late to catch a flight and you have to run through the airport.

It will make a lot of difference if you’re running with a backpack instead of a suitcase.

How to choose the best travel backpack for Europe?

There are plenty of backpacks in the market that fall short when it comes to quality and capacity.

However, there are many other features you should also pay attention to. For that reason, I’ve listed below these features you should take into consideration when choosing your backpack for traveling in Europe.

Quality

It goes without saying that quality is essential when choosing your backpack. I always say “buy better stuff, so you can buy less stuff.”

Not only is this good for your pocket, but also for the environment as we produce less waste.

Good backpacks aren’t cheap, but I’m sure you don’t want your brand new backpack to fall apart during your first trip, right? So again, invest in a decent one that will last for years to come!

Moreover, look preferably for water-resistant or at least semi-water-resistant material, such as treated nylon fiber, a lightweight yet thick fabric.

Otherwise, a backpack with rain cover will work almost as well.

Internal capacity

There are backpacks of all sizes, but the right one for you will depend on your travel style and how well you can pack.

Because if you know how to pack light, you can travel around the world with a 40l backpack only. Seriously!

Daypacks should be around 12l-30l. It’ll depend on the kind of trip and gear you’ll need, obviously.

The ideal size for a carry-on backpack to travel in Europe is between 35l to 45l and – again – it will depend on how well you can pack.

If you’re minimalist, a 35l is more than enough for traveling around Europe in warm temperatures. But most people would require a 40l backpack carry-on to pack everything they need.

In the winter, there are some special techniques to choose your clothes, but if you really can’t pack less, maybe you can better opt for backpacks to put in the hold.

In that case, a bag around 50l-55l should be enough.

I have the Osprey Farpoint 40l but in size S/M which is actually 38l. This size is ideal for my trips and I have no trouble traveling either by train or airplane. (Or bus!)  

If you’re going on a real hiking vacation and need to take some equipment with you, such as hiking poles and a sleeping bag, look for backpacks around 45L-65L because then you’ll have the features and space you need to attach your stuff.

What about backpacks above 65l? Only purchase those if you’re going to camp or trek for a while and need to carry a lot of equipment. Otherwise, they’re overkill.

Good to know

Europe backpack carry on size 22 x 14 x 9 in/ 56 x 35.5 x 23 cm

Woman wearing pink jacket and wearing a backpack on top of the Tatra mountains in Poland and Slovakia
Me + my favorite backpack for Europe on a day hike in Poland

Type of Backpack

Consider what kind of trip you’re going to take to decide on the type of backpack you will need.

Are you going on a hiking vacation in the Swiss Alps? Then you need a backpack suited to carry your equipment.

Are you going on a business-leisure trip to London and need your laptop with you? Then you should look for a laptop travel backpack.

Or do you prefer versatile wheeled backpacks that you can wear as a backpack on the cobblestones streets of Paris?

There are multiple types of backpacks to choose from according to what you really need or the gears you’re considering to take with you.

Front or top opening

There are two ways to access your things and you should look for the one that suits you best.

Top opening (or top loading) opens the superior part of the bag and it works better when you’re carrying a laptop, tablet, notebooks, etc.

Most backpacks have a top opening and I particularly prefer this one as a daypack because it’s safer.

The downside of top-loading backpacks is that if you need something that it’s in the bottom, you have to unpack all the rest of your things.

On the other hand, a front-loading backpack opens like a suitcase, which means the opening is much bigger and you can easily access everything.

I prefer to use this one for traveling because it’s much easier to pack, organize, and find whatever I want inside my backpack.

Internal Frame

There are two kinds of frames for backpacks: internal and external. I suggest you choose the first one because it usually is lighter than the external frame.

Well, actually that won’t be a problem since most backpacks nowadays have an internal frame, but still, it’s important to know that.

The external frame is really visible to the eyes and it can carry heavier equipment, however, it decreases your mobility and it can get easily damaged because the frame is sticking out.

Note: There are no backpacks in the list above with external frames.

Man wearing a black jacket and a yellow backpack looking over the Tatra Mountains in Poland
Frank with his daypack

Low Weight

The ideal backpack for Europe is lightweight, which means around 1.4 kg/3 lbs.

It has to be light because you’ll carry all your stuff on your back. Can you imagine if the backpack is also adding considerable weight to it? It’s not going to work!

Actually, to make your life easier you should choose a lightweight version of all your things, from the camera to your shoes. But that’s a subject for another article.

Multiple Compartments

A backpack with lots of pockets and compartments helps to keep your things organized and easy to find. This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t use packing cubes anymore though.

It just means that packing cubes won’t be the only thing that will keep your stuff in place.

Anyway, besides the packing cubes, you’ll also need multiple compartments to pack and unpack in a more efficient way.

For instance, you might need a main compartment for clothes, another compartment for shoes and accessories, a padded laptop sleeve, pockets for small things, a pocket for your water bottle, and so on.

Padded Straps

One of the most important features on any backpack is the shoulder straps!

Since you’re carrying the whole weight of your clothes and gadgets on your back, it’s essential to have padded and fairly large straps to avoid hurting your shoulders.

Moreover, look for a padded hip belt and a chest (sternum) strap. This will give the support you need to have a perfect weight distribution of the load, avoiding any overload on your shoulders.

Padded Back

I personally suggest backpacks that have a mesh back panel with two vertical ribs of foam to offer some padding and comfort.

This feature also prevents your back from getting sweaty since the air is circulating between your skin and the backpack, making your skin cooler.

Do you have any questions about these backpacks? Comment below so we can talk!

Best travel backpacks for Europe

I hope this article with the best travel backpacks for Europe will help you choose the one that suits you best.

As you know, my favorite one is the Osprey Farpoint and I have been very satisfied with it.

Although it’s commercialized as a backpack for men, I have been using it for years and can’t complain about it.

Which one will you choose?

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