1. Emergency tool kit
When the axle of James May’s crane lorry detached itself from its mounting points, he was lucky not to wind up at the bottom of a valley in the Burmese jungle. A ratchet strap helped secure the errant parts, but did little to lower May’s blood pressure. If you find yourself in a similarly sticky situation with your car, you’ll be grateful for an emergency tool kit. For under £50, Auto Express rated Rolson’s as one of the best available. We found it for under £40, Alternatively, try our cut-price, do-it-yourself winter breakdown kit.
2. Remote-controlled drone
Holiday photos may not be a thing of the past just yet, but video is fast catching up as a traveller’s favourite keepsake. To record the sort of stunning aerial footage that featured throughout the Top Gear Burma specials, you need a remote controlled drone. For the amateur pilot, start with the Parrot AR Drone 2.0. It gets great reviews, can cost as little as £230, and is easily controlled by smart phone or tablet. Best of all, your video will ensure your holiday truly is the envy of friends and family.
3. Inflatable cushion
If your holiday is going to involve travelling on roads that are ‘built by babies’, like the ones in the Shan State (and not dissimilar to some of the UK’s roads, if we’re honest) pack an inflatable cushion. It will be the best £12 you’ve ever spent and should ensure you’re capable of walking at the end of a day’s driving.
4. Directory of international osteopaths Pack of pain killers
Since there is no such thing as a directory of international osteopaths (trust us, we looked), and because driving for a prolonged period can be as bad for your back as giving the mother-in-law a piggy back over a footpath stile, it’s essential to travel with a pack of pain killers. It may not fix the problem but it will make your road trip bearable.
5. British army rations
Just as we are told to eat our five-a-day, in the Shan State the locals believe in the wholesome goodness of the three C’s – crickets, cicadas and caterpillars – as Clarkson found out. If you’re too squeamish to consider broadening your horizons in such a way, take some British Army ration packs.
6. Radiator repair kit
After Hammond reversed his truck into the front of Clarkson’s sports lorry, the radiator sprang a leak. If that happens to you, don’t try what Jeremy did and crack an egg into the radiator – it won’t work. Instead, pour in a bottle of Holts Radweld. It does work – as reviews on Halfords.com testify.
7. Earplugs for snorers
Do your travelling companions snore like a rhinoceros with a cold? Worse still, do they snore like James May? Lowering them into a river could be considered a little extreme. Instead, take some disposable earplugs and you’ll have no trouble drifting off to the land of nod each night.
8. Gin and tonic in a can
At the end of a hard day relaxing in the sun, (or building a bamboo bridge in Top Gear’s case) you’ve earned a refreshing drink. What better than a gin and tonic, a long standing favourite of ‘Officer’ Clarkson and Captain Slow. But don’t bother fiddling around mixing them yourself. A smart British traveller would have packed G&T in a can.
9. Portable bridge
At 625,000 kilos, the Titan armoured bridge carrier may not be portable in the traditional traveller sense, but it could have saved Clarkson, May and Hammond from messing about for days on end building a bridge over the River Kok. The British Army are fans. Enough said.
10. Top Gear series 21 DVD
It’s all over. Well, it is for Top Gear fans until series 22 airs later this year. So what better way to enjoy some light entertainment on your travels than the DVD of Top Gear Series 21, coming to a high street near you soon… And if you can’t wait that long, don’t forget you can watch all the episodes on iPlayer.