Packing Light When Traveling to Central America
Traveling to Central America is one of my all-time favorite places to go. The locals, whether you are in Costa Rica with the Ticos or watching the Garifunas in Belize, are always friendly and willing to show you around. The scenery and cultures are also so diverse that there is rarely a dull moment.
However, people greatly underestimate the power of basics when it comes to travel. Most realize that they need to bring sunscreen or bug spray, but very few consider all the other easy-to-pack essentials that will make life much more easier when traveling around Central America. A few of those things include:
Packing a ton of underwear isn’t always a feasible option. When you are trying to travel with as light a load as possible, you don’t want half of your pack bogged down with heavy cotton underwear. Instead invest in synthetic underwear. Synthetic underwear is a better option because it cleans easier and dries quicker.
Traveling with a cell phone these days is actually quite beneficial. However, the charges associated with dragging your own cell phone through another country can be outrageous. To save money, but still enjoy the convenience of having a cell phone around, buy one of the various Prepaid Cell Phones when you land.
Military Grade Socks
Military socks are not only comfy and thick – which makes them great for hiking – but they also have copper woven into their fibers which keeps them odorless and sanitary much longer than regular cotton socks. So if you plan on hiking around, don’t pack your backpack full of socks. Grab one pair of military socks for every week you intend to be out and about. Your feet will stay comfy and clean, and you won’t have to waste room in your pack.
Many assume that all of Central America is always warm. This is hardly the case. While in San Ignacio, Belize temps during the day would surge to 106 degrees and then fall dramatically at night. Most local inns don’t keep heavy blankets around to help you stay warm; however, packing a bulky blanket is ridiculous. To keep yourself warm at night, simply pack a space blanket. You can put it in between your sheets at night and then fold it up to place in a front pocket the next morning.
Many inexpensive inns and eco resorts around Central America don’t have bathrooms inside of rooms. Instead you’ve got to walk across the grounds. While this is no biggie during the day, it can be a little scary when you’ve got to go at night. To keep yourself from bumbling around in the dark, as most places aren’t well lit, take a small flashlight and keep it by your bed.
While some of these items may seem a little random, I always find that I am happy to have them when bus hopping through Central America. They are easy to transport, and make life a little more convenint while on the road.