Travel Costa Rica: A Survival Kit
During the last two years in Costa Rica, my wife and I have traveled to over 25 domestic destinations and have created new experiences, hiked new trails, saw active volcanoes and raging rivers, zip-lined through cloud forests, observed 16-foot crocodiles alongside our boat, kayaked in a crater lake and along the Caribbean Coast, were enthralled by fire dancers, surfed a few great breaks, learned countless lessons, met amazing people, swam in waterfall pools, cliff dived over 55 feet (my butt still hurts), touched starfish, saw countless exotic birds and monkeys, and pushed ourselves to new limits in many categories of life.
Sure, we moved to a vacation destination, but that was no reason to stop going on vacations! I have many travel tips to offer, but my biggest advice is to keep challenging yourself and feeding your passions. As an experienced budget traveler, let me share with you my survival kit for Costa Rica:
1. Ear plugs
For those times when the karaoke party next door seems endless.
2. Eye mask
Great for red-eye flights, bright hotel rooms, and dorm rooms.
3. Surge protector
Provides more outlets to charge all of your devices while protecting them from that lightning storm outside.
4. Electrical adapter
To plug the surge protector into if you are traveling to a country that has different electrical outlets.
5. Electronic reader
Because books are just too heavy to heave.
6. Camel back
For those who like long walks or hikes, it’s a great way to stay hydrated and has room to pack some snacks.
7. Sea sick medicine
You never know when you might have the opportunity to ride a boat, so keep Dramamine, Famodile (my personal favorite), or another similar product with you.
8. Mole skin
Hiking across varying terrains such as rivers, dusty roads, or through the mud can lend to some gnarly blisters, and mole skin really keeps you going.
9. Needle sew kit
Most recently, I’ve had a hole in my favorite board shorts and a strap break on my daypack. Neither was a big deal because I had a tiny needle sew kit to make repairs.
We all know that a bad burn brings down your traveling experience.
11. Small bag of laundry detergent with 10-20 foot string
On many occasions through our travels, we have laundered our clothes by hand in the sink of a hotel/hostel and simply placed them on the line to dry. This addition is only for the backpacker or budget-minded individual because most hotels offer laundry services for an additional fee.
For those times when you need a break from the sun or it’s pouring rain (the bill creates a nice awning keeping the rain out of your eyes).
In addition to the survival kit, make sure to pack light. The more you pack, the more weighted down you will be, symbolically, and literally. Before setting off on a trip, we analyze which pieces of clothing, devices, and hygienic stuff were actually used in the past. On each trip, Cammy and I become more precise with what we want–and need–to keep with us.
We have learned that we like to wear the same four shirts, three shorts, and two pairs of pants over the rest of our wardrobe. We only like to lug one pair of flip flops and one pair of hiking/water (multipurpose) shoes each. Even when we plan a month-long trip, we stick to these items of clothing because it’s what we will actually wear, so we wash them when needed. For me, skimping on the electronic goods is the hardest part. I use them for work, but have many devices and accessories that are redundant, so my task each trip is to see what I actually used and what has multiple purposes.
Your adventurous spirit will lead you towards a desire for travel, so don’t dwindle it by getting stuck in a rut. Keep exploring, whether you simply travel an hour or two away or get on a flight to a new country. Continue to challenge yourself and see what life has to offer.
Visit Costa Rica: A Survival Kit