You’re ready for an active vacation and you've researched your adventure trip. You consider yourself a seasoned traveler who knows how to hit the road. Still, here are a few travel tips to keep in mind as you embark on an adventure in Costa Rica.
Make a list of your must-haves. Then make a list of your must-must haves. Then it's good if what you bring is less than that. Happy travels are light travels so all the better if everything you use on your adventure fits into one manageable backpack. Of course, this isn't easy. Adventure gear takes space and there are some things you absolutely will need to ensure a smooth trip. Brutal practicality is in order. What can you do without and what can you buy after you arrive? Bring the basics and the rest will take care of itself.
You may be itching to take that camera with the telescopic lens to capture absolutely amazing images. But recall you'll have to find space for it in your bag and lug it everywhere you go. Maybe your smartphone is good enough for Instagram. And while you may want to wear your favorite fancy watch on your big trip, a durable digital watch might serve you better and not be an issue if it gets banged around on your travels. A mid-range smartwatch is a happy medium. Receive emails, check your GPS and use a fitness app to track your trekking.
You've poured through travel sites. You've made lists. You've shopped for all you'll need. But have you considered your physical readiness? A mistake many make is embarking on strenuous adventures without physically preparing. From rainforest hikes to ocean kayaking, adventure trips require some level of physical fitness. Start with simple exercises like walking or cycling. Gradually increase the intensity as your trip nears. Get the body used to a certain level of physical exertion and you won't spend the first few days of your trip with aching muscles.
While you may rely heavily on Google Maps at home, WAZE will serve you better in Costa Rica. It's the app that's more used by locals and is similar to Google's app in searching driving routes. WAZE also updates traffic in real time and gives you a heads up on any road hazards to look out for. And it's free!
Sure, you'll probably be trekking through a rainforest or plunging down whitewater rapids. But you'll be near cellphone signals for much of your trip. Don't risk getting hit with costly roaming charges. You can pick up a pre-paid SIM card on arrival. Both the airports in San Jose and Liberia have kiosks for Kolbi, a popular local mobile carrier. Prices range from about $10 for 500 MB over one week and 2G for $20 that expires after a month. The latter should last for two weeks' worth of moderate use. If you need more, there are stores throughout Costa Rica with Kolbi logos where you can get recharges.