Two travel loves of fashion designer Rebecca Thompson

by Saturday, November 3, 2018

I have two favourite travel places. My first is Tokyo, Japan. It was the first place I travelled to with my best friend (of radio fame) Chrissie Swan, after we finished school. As two, 18-year-old girls, we found it fast, safe, absurd and crazy, yet traditional and historical. I’m still fascinated with the Harajuku rock scene, Tokyo Disneyland (definitely a highlight), Japanese food and visually splendid, incredibly merchandised and stocked shopping areas. My other, obvious favourite is India and this is due to my love of fabrics, textures, colours and now, 20 years of friendships. Can’t get enough.

Rebecca Thompson (far left) attending an Indian wedding.

Top tip for holidaying in India

For inexperienced travellers to India, I suggest adopting a vegetarian diet and trying to remember to only drink water from sealed water bottles – and not have ice in cold drinks. While we are constantly reminded not to drink tap water in countries like India, we often forget that tap water is used in cooking. In fact, some of the ‘best chutneys’ accompanying the ‘best-tasting samosas’ from the street or the local daba (street stalls) don’t use purified water and put you at risk of catching water-borne illnesses. A good, blanket rule to adopt whilst travelling in India is to only eat cooked food.

Rebecca with her team of artisans in India, nearly all of whom have been with her since she started her label 18 years ago!

Something Rebecca always packs when she travels

Metallic shoes! Flat, wedge, pump and even sneakers. This way, your foot attire works with every outfit you pack. I’m also one for taking just one clutch/evening bag, and one day-to-day, oversized, sturdy, tote, carry-on handbag. Now, saying this, I do take a small, light, roll-up bag in my handbag, too, because you just never know when you’ll need it. I use mine for shopping, or to quickly separate dirty from clean clothes, or to keep my head dry if I’m caught in rain without an umbrella or hat/jacket.

Rebecca and friends at the Delhi Golf Club.

A destination on her bucket list

Believe it or not it’s South India! After 69 trips (yes that’s not a typo!) to north India, sadly, I have seen very little of my most-visited, second home.  Eight years ago, I planned to take a month off and travel the south of India. Due to my pregnancy (I gained a hefty 26kgs very quickly!), this trip was put on the back burner but we are, as a family, revisiting this idea for 2018/19.

Rebecca in Delhi.

A travel disaster – or near-miss – which stays in mind

I guess with a lot of travel comes many near-misses or travel disasters. I am definitely one who believes in travel fate (or at least a fabulous new story to retell your family and friends on your safe return). Over the last 20+ years, I’ve had Tamal Tigers shoot at my plane on the airport tarmac of Colombo, Sri Lanka. I’ve watched (at arms-length) the re-enactment of the Bali Nine demonstrating their parts of bringing in the drugs at Denpasar airport strapped with ‘fake packaging’. Super weird, that was. I’ve had numerous emergency landings due to heart attacks or plane/engine failure. Yet, here I am, alive and well and telling you these stories. Got to have travel faith.


About Rebecca Thompson 

Since launching in June 2000, Rebecca Thompson has become one of Australia’s premier luxury fashion labels. Rebecca Thompson operates a store in Brighton, an e-boutique ( and stocks an exclusive number of stockists throughout Australia. She is known for her gorgeous mix of signature embroidery and texturing detail, relaxed separates and unique dresses. Each piece is distinctly Rebecca Thompson; timeless and classic.

Rebecca at the Taj Mahal.