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What to Bring

Packing your Sh..!

What are the essential items to put in your suitcase for your holiday to Costa Rica?
  • Money
  • Passport (license if you have one)
  • Cell phone with good international plan or one that enables you to swap SIMS cards (unlocked)
  • Travel insurance (mentioned earlier as an entry requirement)
Take a photocopy of your passport and insurance policy with you and make sure you leave a photocopy at home or on your phone. Keep a note of the emergency contact number for your Visa or ATM card, and share them with those you trust back home so you can always make a call and get help. Alternatively, you can scan your documents and store them online on in your email as a draft.  Store in more than one site.  I also suggest storing content on little USB devices in encrypted format.  ASK me about how best to do this before travel day. Nearly anything can be purchased in Costa Rica but not everything is available EVERYWHERE.  This list is huge and I’m highlighting the items we need versus items you might want to bring.  My short list is in color, bring anything you want but definitely consider my short list.  Anything you bring, YOU carry. NO EXCEPTIONS.
  • Beach Towel
  • Blow-up Pillow
  • Mobile phone (assumes a good camera)
  • Mobile phone charger
  • Day Bag/backpack
  • Fanny Pack or password pouch for money and docs
  • Driving Licence – only if hiring a car
  • Ear Plugs – essential to avoid ‘cockerel alarm’
  • Electric Adapters – CR use same  plugs as USA
  • Emergency Contact Details stored someplace
  • Eye Mask
  • Fan
  • Games & Playing Cards (I have uno, scrabble, playing cards)
  • Guide Book
  • Headphones
  • Music device/player or portable speakers
  • iPod Speakers
  • Nail File & Nail Scissors
  • Pens
  • Reading Book or Kindle
  • Scuba Diving Certificate
  • Sticking Tape – such as ‘Sellotape’
  • Sewing Kit
  • Spanish Dictionary
  • Swiss Army Knife
  • Towel – I actually have towels
  • Travel Alarm  – I use my phone
  • Lighter – Buy this locally
  • Batteries – for any of your gadgets
  • Umbrella/Raincoat/Poncho essential as if it rains you will be soaked, also use as a parasol when uber sunny
  • Timepiece – again with the phone
  • Medication(s) you rely on
  • Contact Lens Solution
  • Dental Floss
  • Hair Brush
  • Face Wipes
  • Hair Brush
  • Personal Sanitary Products – Tampons, etc.
  • Plastic Bags – for personal hygiene disposal
  • Hair styling product for those that use it.
  • Hand Disinfectant / Antibacterial Gel (I have this there)
  • Jewelery (best to leave home)
  • Lip Balm
  • Make-up
  • Moisturiser / After Sun Lotion
  • Nail Varnish & Remover
  • Razor
  • Shampoo & conditioner
  • Shaving Foam
  • Shower Gel
  • Soap
  • Sun Hat / Baseball Cap
  • Sunglasses
  • Talcum Powder
  • Toothbrush
  • Toothpaste
  • Antiseptic Cream
  • Athlete’s Foot Cream
  • Bandage
  • Blister Plasters
  • Cold & Flu Medicine – ie Lemsip
  • Cystitis Salts
  • Diarrhoea Medicine – ie Imodium
  • Insect Repellent
  • Insect sting/bite relief
  • Paracetamol
  • Plasters
  • Rehydration Salts
  • Safety Pins
  • Split Heel Cream
  • Sting Relief
  • Travel Sickness Pills
Pharmacies are easy and are not too expensive but it is  best to take any medicine that you think you may need. If you are taking any prescribed medication or have a condition that needs specific drugs or brand names (e.g.asthma) you MUST TAKE THEM WITH YOU or minimally bring your doctor’s prescription Herbal medicine is used a lot in Costa Rica, and may be offered to you by many people. including the pharmacy. From experience, they do work very well…
  • Bras
  • Fleece or preferably a light Jacket -especially needed on the plane or night bus rides
  • Jeans or Trousers
  • Knickers / Pants
  • Linen Trousers
  • PJ’s – useful if you fear getting stung
  • Sarong
  • Scarf / Pashmina
  • Shorts
  • Shirts
  • Skirts
  • Socks
  • Swimsuit
  • T Shirts
  • Vest Tops
In Costa Rica, on the Caribbean side, people are very chilled with their clothing. I’ve rarely seen people dress up (maybe at church).

Our Goals

Our primary goal: 
to enjoy ourselves. 

   •    To enjoy ourselves
   •    get location habitable and comfortable
   •    explore a new country, region, culture
   •    document for YouTube channel

Our channel is located at Costa Rica – Caribbean side youtube playlist


Is it safe to swim at Costa Rica Beaches?

If you do not see surfers in front of you or nearby, it is not likely a good place to swim.  Similarly, if you see large or fast crashing waves or notice that there is a fast drawback of water when it recedes between wave sets, it is likely not a safe place to swim.  Riptides are common in Costa Rica and should not be underestimated. 

In any situation, test the waters before going out too far.  To do so, you can wade into the water to your knees.  If you feel a pull out, it is likely a riptide.  To minimize risk, always swim with a partner. 

If you find yourself in a riptide, do not swim against it.  Instead, try to swim parallel to the shore.  If you cannot do so and are pulled out, do not panic.  Riptides will often carry you to calmer water where you can find an alternative route back to the beach or wave for help.

What to Bring