This is a simple question to all the seasoned Costa Rica Travelers in the forum, pass on the knowledge to all the people coming for a visit to consider.
What 5 items do you never leave home without when traveling in and around Costa Rica?
We can forgo the obligatory bug spray, sun block, camera, binoculars, lose the generic, let’s get creative.
1. Trail Bars – Good to have some trail bars while hiking, I’m a man who likes a snack and these can really come in handy. Besides, you need a good snack while taking in some of the views you get here.
2. Crocks – Shoes to get wet in are crucial, if not crocks something that gets wet without getting wet. Crocks are perfect for river rafting, kayaking, and swimming in the ocean, anything having to do with water really. I had a run in with a Ray here many years ago. Got hit pretty hard in the foot, and believe me that stinger hurts like the dickens. Since that day I learned 2 things, always shuffle your feet when walking in the ocean, and for good measure, wear something on your feet if possible. P.S. Crocks are no good if you are swimming, just good for walking.
3. Compass – I don’t recommend folks get lost, but basic compass skills while hiking and going off the beaten path can mean life or death. This is only for folks going off on your own to explore. A compass takes up little space and can save your life.
4. Water Purifier – The water is pretty clean here, but it can also be nice to have a bit of extra protection. I like this little gadget – http://www.steripen.com/adventurer-opti If you travel a lot and go off the beaten path a lot, you will use it.
5. A Towel – Yea, I know that one is kind of generic, but I am particular about my towels… I will let the immortal words of the late great author Douglas Adams sum it up with the following:
"A towel is about the most massively useful thing an interstellar hitchhiker can have. Partly it has great practical value - you can wrap it around you for warmth as you bound across the cold moons of Jaglan Beta; you can lie on it on the brilliant marble-sanded beaches of Santraginus V, inhaling the heady sea vapours; you can sleep under it beneath the stars which shine so redly on the desert world of Kakrafoon; use it to sail a mini raft down the slow heavy river Moth; wet it for use in hand-to- hand-combat; wrap it round your head to ward off noxious fumes or to avoid the gaze of the Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal (a mindboggingly stupid animal, it assumes that if you can't see it, it can't see you - daft as a bush, but very ravenous); you can wave your towel in emergencies as a distress signal, and of course dry yourself off with it if it still seems to be clean enough.
More importantly, a towel has immense psychological value. For some reason, if a strag (strag = non-hitch hiker) discovers that a hitch hiker has his towel with him, he will automatically assume that he is also in possession of a toothbrush, face flannel, soap, tin of biscuits, flask, compass, map, ball of string, gnat spray, wet weather gear, space suit etc., etc. Furthermore, the strag will then happily lend the hitch hiker any of these or a dozen other items that the hitch hiker might accidentally have "lost". What the strag will think is that any man who can hitch the length and breadth of the galaxy, rough it, slum it, struggle against terrible odds, win through, and still knows where his towel is, is clearly a man to be reckoned with." – The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy – Douglas Adams
There are my 5, feel free to chime in and add to the list folks.