COMPLETE COSTA RICA PACKING LIST
The Osa Peninsula is the most wild and untouched region of Costa Rica. We know that packing for a trip to the most remote coastal jungle of the country can be hard, especially if you are packing for your family. At the Jaguar's Jungle we are familiar with many products that make life here easier and can make your trip easier as well. Which is why we have compiled this packing list with links to the products we use for your convenience!
These items will prepare you to hop right into the adventure:
We recommend bringing sandals or flip flops and some comfortable covered-in shoes. Heavy hiking boots are not necessary and we do have rubber boots available for rent.
These are the flip flops we use at Jungla. They never break and they are thick enough to comfortably walk on any terrain. If everyone wore these shoes we would have less broken flip flips washing up on our beaches!
Headlamp and/or Flashlight
Remember to bring your light for night hikes, sunset adventures and walking from the main building to your room at night. We recommend these flashlights for wildlife spotting. The are high lumen and rechargeable.
Built to last
We strongly recommend backpack-style luggage. Suitcases with wheels are very difficult to maneuver on dirt roads and boats are all wet landings. You should also bring dry bags or ziplock bags for any electronics, to combat the humidity and ocean water on boat tours. Here are a few recommendations for dry bags based on the activities you are planning and your budget:
Budget day pack for hiking, kayaking, and boat trips
Better day pack for hiking, kayaking, and boat trips
So dry you can swim with it
Water tight luggage
The best of the best
There is no Malaria in the Drake Bay and Corcovado area, but Dengue and other mosquito-borne diseases do exist in the populated areas of Costa Rica. We recommend bringing a natural insect repellent such as Citronella or Lemon Eucalyptus, as repellents containing DEET are harmful to your health and the health of our environment.
For the best natural protection, our guides recommend mixing this fractionated coconut oil with these essential oils and putting them into these sun blocking glass spray bottles for travel. This combination provides the best protection against sand fleas and mosquito while also protecting you from infections with its antibacterial properties.
Even on cloudy days, you can get very badly burnt in the tropics especially if participating in snorkeling, diving or whale and dolphin tours. Sunscreen is very expensive in Costa Rica, so bring plenty of 50+ with you. You should also bring a hat, sunglasses and lightweight clothing that covers your skin. We also prefer that our guests use reef safe sunblock to protect our ocean oasis.
Water Bottle or Camelbak
No matter what activity, it is essential to remain hydrated and you should drink a minimum of 1 liter of water per day to counteract the tropical heat. All water on the Jungla del Jaguar property is UV sterilized, so you may fill up from any of the taps or showers.
Keep it cold
First Aid Kit
Pharmaceutical items can be very expensive and difficult to find in the area. You should consider bringing bandaids, antiseptic cream, alcohol swabs, tweezers, after sun cream, diarrhea and constipation remedies and seasickness tablets. You should also bring plenty of your prescription medications including birth control.
If you only have one thing in your med kit, it should be neosporin. Its not available in Costa Rica.
Sea Sickness can ruin your Cano Island trip. Be prepared!
Camera and Electronics
Waterproof cameras are highly recommended. Other types of cameras should always be placed in a dry bag or ziplock bag with silica gel pouches. You should have dry bags for all other electronics as well. Not only can it rain at the drop of a hat, but the general humidity level will fry your iPhone in no time.
We use a Gopro to get our awesome shots and a dome to get those half above half below water images
We have family-style meals available, but we also have a guest kitchen. Since the closest store is almost a 2 hour hike, please bring plenty of supplies if you are planning to cook for yourself.
Fishing and Snorkel Gear
It is possible to rent snorkel gear and kayaks at the lodge. We can provide fishing gear for tours, but please bring your own rods or reels if you would like to fish independently.
If you would like to bring your own snorkeling gear, we recommend this mask and snorkel set, these fins, and neoprene booties to prevent blisters and make your fins more comfortable.
If you would like to take snorkeling to the next level and try freediving (breath hold diving) you will need a set of longer fins, a weight belt, and dive weights. This is a good combo for beginners. We generally wear 4lbs of weight when we are not wearing wet suits. We do not have freedive gear to rent out.
This mask and snorkel is better quality for freediving.
The best lures for casting a line off the shore or off the kayaks
We recommend using equipment tested for at least 40lbs
Costa Rica uses two and three pronged US electrical outlets. USB battery packs are also extremely handy in case of power cuts.
Charge your devices anywhere with solar power!
Ponchos or rain jackets are highly recommended if you are planning to travel in Costa Rica July-December. They must be lightweight and breathable like Marmot jackets.
If you plan on using your own hiking boots
If you plan on using our rubber boots
Reading Tropical Nature at Jungla del Jaguar is like being in an episode of Planet Earth! This book describes some of the incredible animals and natural phenomena that happen right in our forest, and being there to see it while you read it is a wonderful experience. We cannot recommend this book enough, especially if you plan on exploring Corcovado or our private forest.
Apart from tour guides, very few locals in the Drake Bay area speak English.
Is soap and shampoo provided?
Yes, we proudly support local business by supplying all natural, organic soaps and shampoos by Osa Natural.
How many days should I spend in Drake Bay?
Most people spend at least 3 nights in Drake Bay. You could go for a day trip to Corcovado, one day snorkeling at Caño Island and a day hike by yourself on our private trails. Of course there is more to do here, like Whale + Dolphin tours, Night hikes, Canopy, Horseback riding, or Bird watching.
There is no ATM machine in Drake Bay. The last ATM is located in Palmar Norte. US Dollars and Colones are accepted everywhere. We accept US dollars, colones, and credit/debit cards.
After many years of figuring out how to get wifi in our remote location, we have finally succeeded! Now, those who need to work while on vacation or need wifi for any reason will have a faster connection here than in Drake Bay!
Kolbi Phone Chip and Offline Apps
If you purchase a kolbi phone chip (1000 colones) before you arrive, there is cell service in a small area of the bar. We also recommend downloading useful apps that work offline such as Tide Predictor, Maps.me and Google Translate.
Please note that you must have your chip activated prior to your arrival at the hostel. Also, note that iPhones from the USA are often blocked and cannot be used with a Costa Rican service provider.
Your Children, but not your Pets
Families are welcome at Jungla del Jaguar. Pets, not so much. We are surrounded by pristine rain forest, which is home to countless animal species. Dogs that are not accustomed to the environment are likely to scare away wildlife and/or get injured.