We just came back from a wonderful winter break in Portugal. We mainly stayed in the Alentejo region, but also traveled, both north and south. The weather there was great! We were lucky to have 90% of the time amazing sunny weather and the temperatures were around 17-22°C, which for us that are not used to hot climate was just what we needed.
With us we took Cotswold Hipster’s Malmesbury Waxed Canvas and Leather Backpack to field test it. It came with a padded camera protection insert, which made this backpack a perfect travel-camera combo.
The conditions we faced during this trip were perfect for a field test. We had windy days at the beach, scorching sun and salty water coming from every direction (we went to Nazare, more of that in another post). The backpack is really sturdy and endured impeccably all of these weather conditions. It is very comfortable to carry around, even all day visiting a city for example and, if you don’t fill it completely full, can be considered as an accessory in most flights. The leather fastenings are very helpful to hold a tripod and it also has a padded compartment that fits up to a 15 inch laptop.
What makes this leather backpack the perfect choice for traveling is the fact that is not very easily opened. Let me explain. In order to open it, one would have to open the leather fastenings, roll it open and unzip it, so you can see how that would be challenging to do without you noticing it. Which really gives you peace of mind when you are strolling around a city and would just want to enjoy the scenery without worrying too much whether someone is going to pickpocket you.
The camera insert is a tad too big, especially if you want to place it at the bottom of the backpack and will pretty much block the access to everything when placed at the top of everything else, so in that way it is not the perfect camera backpack, especially if you want to constantly take the camera from the backpack and place it back. For that kind of purpose, I would choose the Blenheim or the Chalford models instead. But if you, like me, are planning to keep the camera around your neck for the most part, the Malmesbury model might be what you need.