Primitive things are more suitable if something technology goes wrong.
I agree. Although nowadays, it is useful to have technology on you just in case.
I would say my 5 are:
comfortable walking shoes
With those and the clothes on my back I could go anywhere and do anything.
Well... It's hard to choose only 5 main things to take on a trip, but my list would be this:
1. Money (of course)
3. Notebook and pen
4. A good book
5. My mobile phone
1-5 good books (but can usually pick more up while travelling if needed)
money in local currency (always bring some cash in case credit card doesn't work!)
clothing (traditional if in india etc.)
journal and 2or3 pens
comfortable walking shoes and/or sandals
RAINCOAT (can be used against the rain or against the cold with a sweater or 2 underneath)
large multipurpose scarf
backpack medium and small (small one very handy for day trips)
a smile, patience, acceptance, energy and sometimes courage
hiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii i am ride your messages
A notebook and pen. You never know what random thoughts or idea's might surface.... and you won't ever remember them after that moment is gone!
I thought about something I wanted to add to this thread, but i forgot...
If you exclude the obvious necessities like a backpack, clothes, passport, money, toothbrush, etc, then these are my top 5:
1. Netbook (can use skype on it, do secure banking & email and for photo backups)
2. iPod touch (WIFI capable and also serves as a watch)
3. Digital camera
4. Toilet paper
5. Guide book
You don't need much, I've been travelling for over a year now (still on the road) and I've done it with a small 40 L backpack weighing around 10 kgs - I take it on board with me as carry-on luggage on flights and usually fits in overhead compartments of buses/trains.
A good rule is to lay out everything you'll think you need and cut that in half by choosing what you'll REALLY need.
light (mini torch LED light is current fav)
bottle opener maskerading as a key ring
I used to also carry the relevant travel guide or pages from but I've stopped doing that.
Diary with important info - names/addresses/numbers/allergies/flight info/passport # etc etc just in case!
(I was following the trend and assuming passport and money were a given!)