The choice of equipment should really depend on what sort of subjects you are interested in. Most, if not all, of the Nikon equipment you mention is good. You should be careful, however, not to invest in things you dont need. I recently bought a 24mm AIS lens which gets great reviews. The problem is that I dont really like the 'shape' of the images it produces. I prefer the view through a 28mm. This a personal thing, and you wont know what suits you best until you get out and try it. That is why a zoom can be quite useful at the start. You can see which focal lengths you regularly use, and perhaps get better quality prime lens equivalents later on.Also, If you regularly find that something longer, or wider, than your zoom is needed, you can check out an appropriate lens. I would be slow to buy a 50mm regardless of aperture. The view you get is very 'normal'. They were practically extinct at one point, and have only recently come back in fashion, mainly for use on digital cameras where the 'view' they give is usually different to that on a 35mm SLR. I have the 50mm F1.8, but rarely use it. I have a Billingham Hadley and it is a good bag. It doesn't hold a huge amount, but that can be an advantage. I also have a Kata 3 in 1 30 which is a rucksack. It is tough and well made. It is very comfortable, even fully loaded. You can get it a bit cheaper from an English company called Premier Ink(online). I have various other small bags which carry less, but are useful for travelling light. Lowepro and Tamrac are two companies you should look at as well. I hope this helps. Alex.