What to wear in Costa Rica in August

Old Jul 27th, 2002, 07:09 AM
Jay Weinstein
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What to wear in Costa Rica in August

I will be traveling to Costa Rica from Aug. 8 to Aug. 16. I will be staying one day in San Jose, three days in Arenal, and four days in Guanacaste. I will be white water rafting in the Pacuare, horseback riding and hiking in the rain forest in Arenal (including canopy tours), and scuba diving of the coast of Guancaste.

What kinds of footwear do I need? Boots. Any suggestions? How high should they be? Must they be water proof?

Slacks or shorts. Should I wear loose fitting cotton or linen slacks? Shorts?

What kinds of shirts?

What will the weather and temperature be like?

Any assistance you can give me would be appreciated.

Old Jul 27th, 2002, 01:24 PM
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Tropical weather --- warm & likely to see afternoon rain showers in San Jose & Arenal. Even though it is the 'green season' the Guarancaste region tends to be a bit drier than other sections of the country. For your hike in the rain forest (or is it actually the cloud forest --- there is a difference), you definitely need rain gear, a poncho works well.

The "dress code" in CR is casual --- so dress for comfort. I'd bring mainly shorts with only a couple slacks for evening. On my first trip there (getting ready to go back in Sept) I didn't do as many active things as your itinerary and so, found I was comfortable with level of hiking in my tennis shoes. Others who've experienced a more vigorous tour can better respond to what you'll need in your situation.

Old Jul 27th, 2002, 01:36 PM
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Jay, I just checked on my favorite weather website (http://www.wunderground.com/) and right now it's 75 degrees in San Jose --- however you also need to look at the humidity and dewpoint to get an accurate picture of how it feels. They list a dewpoint of 68, so the temp will "feel" warmer than what you think 75 degrees will be like.
Old Jul 27th, 2002, 05:17 PM
David N Cook
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Shorts for the day and MAYBE cool cotton slacks for evening but casual is for sure the word here. Running/walking shoes will do for most hikes tho it may get muddy. Even when it's raining it feels warm so a hat and a light windbreaker should do it. The only cool places I can remember are the highest point in Monteverde and the road from San Isidro to SJ, both on the continental divide. Good luck, you'll have fun!
Old Jul 27th, 2002, 08:40 PM
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On my recent trip I took a pair of hiking boots (low top casual, not serious boots) and Rockport athletic sandals, and that was the perfect combo. One pair of jeans (although backpacking pants would have been better) and a bunch of hiking shorts made out of that lightweight material that you buy at sporting goods stores. That was perfect! If I had it to do again, I'd pack exactly the same.
Old Jul 28th, 2002, 09:43 AM
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I agree with Monica. Denim does not dry and will make you miserable unless you are willing to do laundry frequently. I would recommend the nylon pants with zip-off legs such as those at Campmor, Ex Officio or REI. I loved mine and they worked beautifully for everything from cloud forest hiking to the whitewater rafting. I even wore them horseback riding. I also took a couple of Coolmax tanks and some button-down sleeveless nylon shirts to layer over. The Coolmax and nylon are really perfect for the tropics. They wick moisture away from your skin and dry quickly. As far as shoes, I took hiking books, Tevas, and a cheap pair of rubber thongs. You could even forego the rubber thongs, but I liked having them for showering and just lazing around.
Have fun!
Old Jul 28th, 2002, 04:51 PM
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I just returned from the exact itinerary. In San Jose it was a perfect temperture, cool at nite. I wore a light sweater for dinner. In Arenal it rained alot. Warm temperture, take rain gear, water proof boots. We stayed at Flamingo Bch in Guancastle, warm to hot, very little rain, mostly sunny.

In summary, take summer clothes, hiking boots, sneakers, water shoes (if you have them) and sandels. I did wear sheer blouses to protect my arms from bites. Very light pants will help also however, I still came home with hundreds of bites all over my body. Yes, I did use repelent several times a day.
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