COSTA RICA: WHAT TO PACK
What to pack for a trip to Costa Rica? Unless you are a diver, or planning on spending two weeks lolling about in the Four Seasons, my list might work for you. Bear in mind that there are 25lb weight restrictions on internal flights.
- Day shorts, evening shorts
- T-shirt for snorkelling, otherwise lightweight a couple of cotton shirts.
- Long trousers for jungle trekking, go for quick dry wicking fabrics. I’m not sponsored, honest, but Rohan and Columbia are both good makes.
- Long-sleeved shirt, as above, go for wicking fabrics
- Swimwear: bikini for Guanacaste and Puerto Viejo (something more substantial for beaches with rollers) and some super lightweight wrap that will serve as sun, sand and no see’um protection.
- Foreign legion style hat with flap at the back to cover your neck. I don’t actually have one, but always think this would be useful. Failing that, any kind of hat.
- T-shirt fabric dress. That jungle look doesn’t work in San José.
- More socks than you’d expect. You’ll need them for boots, and if you wash them in a rainforest, they won’t dry.
- Flipflops. Okay I take two pairs, one fancy.
- Rubber boots. If you are staying at a jungle lodge, ask – many provide them, otherwise buy local from agricultural supply shops and markets. Opinion is divided, but aside from being useful for rivers, they offer a degree of snake protection, and I never hike without them. If you don’t fancy boots, do take closed toe hiking footwear of some description.
- Ziplock bags for sealing passport and travel documents against damp, and anything vaguely edible against ants.
- A wide selection of repellent. Everyone has their theories – and favourites, mine being Jungle Formula roll-on.
See the Holiday Guide to Costa Rica in The Guardian for recommendations on slightly less-crowded must-see destinations