When in doubt, travel light. Especially if you are travelling far. The times I have packed light was specifically when I was visiting Europe. Being from Canada, getting there is a series of short flights and one long one over the ocean. Not to mention moving through many time zones as well.
The importance of packing light can not be underestimated. When you are jet-lagged, waiting to go through customs in a foreign country or half asleep as you try to navigate your way to your hotel, heavy luggage will feel much, much heavier versus when you are well rested.
It may seem odd to pack only a few shirts and pants for a couple of weeks, but remember you are not travelling to walk down a runway. You are there to relax, explore a different country and culture. It is also important to note that comfy clothing are your best friends. Sneakers and runners are your go to footwear, not snappy sandals or flip flops. You may not know how long you will be out and about, and you certainly will not know how much walking you will be doing.
So how light should you pack? The rule of thumb is for everything you are going to bring to fit into one backpack or small suitcase! I know what you are thinking, and it is possible. You just have to keep reminding yourself to pack light, pack light and oh, pack light. To get an idea of how much you should bring, follow Rick Steve’s packing list which you can read here.
I also highly recommend his travel guide books, in case you are looking for a good guidebook if you are thinking of visiting Europe sometime in the future.