Help me pack Please!

Old Jan 21st, 2005, 10:24 AM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 91
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Help me pack Please!

We are a family of five heading to Costa Rica in Feb. We have 3 children ages 10, 8 and 6. I have read the recommendations to travel light and would love to have somebody who has been there recently to translate that for me. How many outfits for a week? If it is hot and muggy-- sounds like at least one a day, plus rain gear, sandles, hiking shoes, swim suites/towels, long-pants shirts etc... We will be two days at Arenal, 3 days at Manual Ant. and 2 days around San Jose. Any recommendations would be greatly appreciated!
dineroguru is offline  
Old Jan 21st, 2005, 11:55 AM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 10,212
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Thoughts on packing~

You can wear shorts/pants more than once. For one week, I'd suggest 3 pair of shorts, one pair of long pants (the kind that zip off just above the knee)

3-4 t-shirts, a tank top or two, and a long sleeved shirt or light weight jacket (for cool evenings)

Tennis shoes for hiking (or Teva style sandals), a pair of flip flops

Swimsuit (use shorts and t-shirts for cover up)

We never take rain gear or towels.

Take some repellent, a small flashlight or two, any prescriptions you are taking, ibuprofen, etc. Definitely suncreen! Many places have hairdryers in the room--you can check on that ahead. Underwear, sleepwear, socks, etc.

I usually wear a jacket on the airplane as well as my tennis shoes (so I don't have to pack the bulkier items). Works pretty well.

shillmac is offline  
Old Jan 21st, 2005, 12:05 PM
  #3  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 91
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Thanks shillmac. how about up in the arenal area? How bad are the bugs this time of year. I am most worried for our six year old son who seems to rarely notice them until too late! What of scorpions too?
dineroguru is offline  
Old Jan 21st, 2005, 12:30 PM
  #4  
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Posts: 1,372
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
As for rain gear - what we have are those little lightweight rain jackets that fold into themselves and make a pack. Does that make sense? Or those that come in a little mesh pouch that you can hook on your belt. Or even those real cheap ponchos. Not your rain gear that you would use sitting out at a football game.

I carry several nylon or lightweight shorts as well as khaki shorts, lots of tanks, we do carry a windbreaker with a light lining, a long sleeve shirt, one pair of long zip off type pants, 2 swimsuits.

We carry a change for each day, just one.

Black flip flops go with everything.

Walking tennis shoe, (only took boots once), and tevas.

We have never carried towels, but we also do not take 3 young children. If you are driving a few beach towels will not be a problem. If you are flying, they are rather heavy. You can buy a few at the beach, a usuable souvenir. And those beautiful sarrongs(is that what they are called?) are great and versatile - towel, coverup, skirt & dress in one piece of fabric.

I know it is maddening to try and pack light. Every year I get lighter and lighter.
dfarmer is offline  
Old Jan 21st, 2005, 12:44 PM
  #5  
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Posts: 1,372
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
3 trips, one scorpion and lots of lizards.

Always have your son wear insect repellent. No reason to take the chance. Have you seen that sunscreen that has the repellent?

We have always traveled in Feb and never have had a problem with bugs. But there could always be a first time.
dfarmer is offline  
Old Jan 21st, 2005, 12:51 PM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Posts: 1,372
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Sorry I forgot to say - we always keep flip flops beside the bed and never walk around without them, just in case I do run into a scorpion.

Don't forget your binoculars, and plenty of film.
dfarmer is offline  
Old Jan 21st, 2005, 01:05 PM
  #7  
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 112
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
We just returned and were in Arenal last week. It rained on and off the two days we were there but it was a comfortable temperature. We used the 99 cent ponchos we had brought and they came in very handy on a hike. Better than rain gear as a jacket would have been too hot. Also, a long sleeved coolmax shirt was perfect.

As for bugs, we didn't have a problem there. Just wear bugspray and long pants and sneakers if hiking. The only big bug we saw was a giant moth in our bathroom which was harmless! Check if anyplace you are staying does laundry. I wore my coolmax and jeans almost the entire time we were in San Jose and Arenal and had them laundered before we left.

San Jose was unseasonably cool when we were there both days- about 70 and breezy.

A suggestion for the beach is to bring a Neatsheet (sold in grocery and drugstores). It's essentially a large and light beach blanket that doesn't get soggy like towels. Use this to sit on and you only need to bring a towel or two for drying off. The sand comes right off of it as well.
dreamathers is offline  
Old Jan 21st, 2005, 01:23 PM
  #8  
lvk
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 3,265
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
We were in CR in August with 2 kids, ages 11 & 9, with a similar itinerary. You've gotten good tips here, I'll just add a few:

1. "Coolmax","Climalite"(adida s) or "Dri-fit" (nike) shirts. These are the breathable shirts with different brand names. They dry very fast and ventilate the skin. We only brought 2 of these each and ended up washing them out and wearing them the whole trip, shunning our 100% cotton shirts. I would advise to bring a few of these and minimal amount of cotton. However, some people don't like the feeling of synthetics against their skin, so if that's you, then never mind.

2. Suction hooks - someone on this board recommended these, and I found them quite helpful to hang up clothing, bathing suits, etc. to dry off. Many of the hotels either don't have any hooks, or have too few.

3. Small bottle with Woolite (to wash aforesaid shirts and bathing suits). Also a small spray bottle of Febreeze to spray on those items that don't quite dry quickly enough and start to smell.

4. We used the "Repel" brand of combo sunscreen/bug repellent and had very few problems with any bugs (and my husband is a mosquito magnet).

5. Zip lock bags of all sizes- to keep damp things away from your dry things, and many other uses.

6. Beach towels - we brought a couple and they came in handy. Just bring the thinnest ones you have.

7. Hotel laundry service at the Arenal Paraiso was pretty reasonable.

8. We did not bring any jeans or hiking boots, and did not miss them at all.

9. Ditto the sarong idea. My daughter bought a beautiful one outside MA park and used it lots.

Have a great time and I hope you post a trip report when you return!
lvk is offline  
Old Jan 21st, 2005, 01:47 PM
  #9  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 91
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
How kind of you all to share. I will pass it on when we return and look forward to a great trip. Con mucho gusto y Pur Vida! did i get that right?
dineroguru is offline  
Old Jan 21st, 2005, 02:09 PM
  #10  
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Posts: 1,372
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
You are so welcome, dineroguru - Wishing you a GREAT trip.

Ivk - I have been gathering stuff all week and you reminded me of two items I had forgotten. Ziplocks and Woolite. Someday maybe I will get organized enough to create a packing list!

dreamathers - is this blanket actually called NeatSheet? Looked briefly today, but didn't find it. Will keep looking, that sounds like a great idea. I have used the sarong, but it does tend to hang on to the sand.

dfarmer is offline  
Old Jan 25th, 2005, 06:02 AM
  #11  
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 149
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Thanks for the great packing advice! One other question -- what should we pack to wear out to dinner. We probably won't go too fancy with our 3 kids!
dhswor is offline  
Old Jan 25th, 2005, 05:58 PM
  #12  
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 10,212
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Very few places will turn you away with shorts and t-shirts. Sometimes I take a skirt, sometimes not, capris--or not. One "dressier" t-shirt, perhaps. My husband has taken a pair of khaki slacks, but needed them only once. Doesn't bother anymore. Don't let restaurants enter into your packing. 99.9% of the time, it won't matter.
shillmac is offline  
Old Feb 6th, 2005, 06:12 PM
  #13  
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Posts: 1
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I don't have any answers--just more questions about what to pack. We will be taking our first trip to Costa Rica and staying at the Tabacon Hot Springs Resort & Spa in the Arenal area, at Hotel Fonda Vela in the Monteverde area, and at So Como No in the Manuel Antonia area. Do we need to dress up for dinner at these resorts?
cdowe is offline  
Old Feb 6th, 2005, 06:46 PM
  #14  
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 5,541
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
cdowe - see shillmac's response right above your question. CR is casual, shorts & shirt & you'll fit right in with everyone else.
tully is offline  
Old Feb 7th, 2005, 06:16 AM
  #15  
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 562
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
You do not need to dress up. Costa Rica is very casual. I sometimes bring a sundress to wear just because it makes me feel good to go back to the room after a hot day of hiking or whatever and shower and put on something loose and comfortable that I won't be hiking in the next day but it certainly isn't required.

Do have a pair of long pants and something with long sleeves for Monteverde. It can get cool up there.


Jessie_ is offline  
Old Feb 7th, 2005, 08:51 AM
  #16  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 6,098
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
cdowe--we stayed at the Fonda Vela January 2004. It is a nice restaurant, but they are used to people coming in who have been tromping around in the cloud forest, mud, muck, rain, etc. who don't have time to change for dinner before the restaurant closes.

It is casual dress, clean and neat if you can, but they understand if you come in somewhat in a state of disarray. Certainly no ties and jackets for men.
RufusTFirefly is offline  
Related Topics
Thread
Original Poster
Forum
Replies
Last Post
Riadhou
Europe
4
Jul 25th, 2017 12:41 PM
crckwc
Europe
54
Oct 5th, 2007 08:19 PM
carinv
United States
8
Oct 30th, 2005 07:52 PM
airwayvz
Mexico & Central America
10
Nov 11th, 2004 07:18 PM
randibeth1
Mexico & Central America
6
Dec 11th, 2003 05:53 PM

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Manage Preferences - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Your Privacy Choices -