Coming to Costa Rica soon on vacation?
Here are some quick and easy trip tips on what to pack for your Costa Rica vacation.
- Quick-dry or similar non-wrinkle outdoor clothing is the best for Costa Rica’s variable climates.
- Comfortable beach-wear and light tropical clothing for the coasts and lower elevations.
- At least one long-sleeved shirt, light sweater or fleece for chilly evenings or visits to high elevation places, such as Monteverde, San Gerardo de Dota, the Irazú and Poás Volcanoes, etc.; these areas are much cooler in temperature, especially at night.
- Water-resistant rain jacket or poncho with a hood: it rains in the rainforest!
- A sun hat or ball cap – a must for protection against the hot tropical sun.
- Comfortable footwear, including good all-purpose walking shoes, light beach sandals, and at least one pair of closed-toe all-terrain sandals or running shoes for adventurous activities.
- Small backpack / daypack for day trips.
- Small travel flashlight or head lamp.
- Binoculars for wildlife viewing and bird-watching.
- Alarm clock or watch with an alarm.
- Sunscreen – a sports waterproof type with at least 30 SPF is best.
- Insect repellent – go for something strong.
- Daily hygiene products and personal medication.
- Small travel first-aid kit.
IDENTIFICATION & MONEY
- Passport – must be valid for at least six months after your trip finishes. When out on tours, leave your original passport in your hotel safe and carry a copy.
- Valid driver’s license for vehicle rentals.
- Credit cards – Visa and MasterCard are the most widely accepted; be sure to alert your bank of your travel plans. (Traveler’s checks are hardly ever accepted; don’t bring them.)
- Cash in U.S. dollars (note that $100 bills are hard to cash except in a bank). Nearly all banks have ATMs where you can use your ATM or debit card. Change money in a bank rather than at the airport for a better exchange rate.
- Costa Rican Colones: it is a good idea to carry at least $100 in Costa Rican Colones for buying items in small stores or rural places where dollars won’t be accepted.
- Emergency contact information; put this information in your luggage and wallet.
- Cell phone or tablet with internet access (Wi-Fi internet is relatively common in Costa Rica now). Don’t forget the chargers and necessary cables.
- Camera with extra memory card and batteries.
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Article by Shannon Farley