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Does the Craghoppers 16l Kiwi Classic Roll Top backpack deliver on comfort and performance? Read our review to find out.

craghoppers kiwi 16l classic rolltop rucksack
Best for...
Casual daily use / travelling.
Overall Score
A Simple, lightweight backpack that does the job.
Fiddly closure.

The Kiwi Rolltop is a lightweight backpack aimed at urban and travel users rather than mountain conquerors. The design is frameless, simply shaped, and manufactured partly from recycled materials, including about 7 recycled plastic bottles.

SmartDry Eco technology also gives the outer fabric of the Kiwi a water-resistant finish to keep your kit dry in a shower.

The bag comprises one large compartment with both internally and externally accessed sleeves intended for tablets or laptops, including one slim internal pocket with RFID protection for extra security, plus one external water bottle pocket.

Because of this, the Kiwi copes well with your main bits of tech, but less well with accessories such as chargers, cables etc. which will have to share space in the main compartment with your jumper and sandwiches. An external zipped pocket would have been a nice addition for extra flexibility.

Design-wise, the bag has a rectangular shape with a distinctive roll-over top, secured by a full-width zip, two side tensioning straps fastened by clips, and one central front strap with a hooked closure.

This combination provides a secure and tamper proof way of keeping your belongings safe together with a generous opening to help with finding and removing the contents. One downside however, is that this collection of four different straps and buckles is rather fiddly and doesn't easily allow for rapid or one-handed access.

Following its philosophy of lightweight simplicity, the bag does not have a lot of structure, relying instead on a thinly padded back panel to provide comfort and to give it some shape. This approach works well for fairly light loads and shorter carries, but is less suited to heavier or awkward contents, particularly in hotter weather.

One clever (and almost hidden) feature termed the 'cafe strap' is that one of the main strap's buckles comes apart to allow the strap to be easily looped through a chair, or airport trolley, preventing the bag being snatched. A great extra feature for keen travellers!

Overall, a good value backpack that puts simplicity, understated performance and classic styling at the top of the priorities list.

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