What to Wear when You’re in Costa Rica: A Traveler’s Fashion Guide
Rightfully named ‘Rich Coast’, Costa Rica is definitely one of the most beautiful places on earth. It’s simply one of those paradisiacal places with hot weather, sunny beaches, breathtaking landscapes, and a culture so diverse you won’t have a minute to spare if you’re planning on getting to know it.
It’s a land of freedom, of time to be spent away or luxuriously wasted, and a place where you can do absolutely anything you want. With that in mind, here is a traveller’s fashion guide regarding what to wear when you go to Costa Rica, based on the activities you can do there.
#1. Visit La Fortuna de San Carlos and take a backpack with you
Costa Rica is famous and very much sought after for its volcanoes. La Fortuna de San Carlos stands right in the middle of a line-up of geological wonders. There is the Arenal, the country’s most active volcano, which actually erupts in streams of lava and clouds of ash from time to time.
In the same region, you can also see Catarata de la Fortuna, a waterfall that pours from a seventy-meter cliff. Don’t go too far, because you can also visit the Tabacon Hot Springs and the Leaves and Lizards Arenal Volcano Cabin Retreat.
Needless to say, you need to pack light, but smart.
You will have to do some walking and hiking, so make sure to take a sturdy and large enough backpack with you. Pack water and snacks in it. As far as your outfit goes, you can wear shorts or leggings, a comfortable and loose t-shirt, and definitely a cap or a hat. Trainers are a must. Here you can find an old school solid canvas backpack. (image below)
#2. Go to Santa Teresa and pack a swimsuit
Santa Teresa is one of Costa Rica’s most wonderful beach towns. The sun is always bright, the sands are soft and gleaming, and the water is warm, refreshing, and perfectly clear. Sounds like heaven. And, as if that wasn’t enough, you can also surf here, the traditional way or kite-surfing, you can do snorkelling, because the water is so clear, and you can fish all day long. Not into activities? No problem. They also have spas that sound too good to be true or you can do yoga.
Still not satisfied? Ok, then you can simply lay on the beach because the weather is perfect and the view of the ocean is breathtaking. You will experience a relaxation session like you’ve never felt before. However, no matter which one of the above you choose, you’ll need a swimsuit. So make sure to pack your best one and parade it on the beach. For a touch worthy of a true fashionista, wear some faux beach sandals.
#3. A must see is the jaguar Centro de Rescate
Its name means The Rescuing Center for Jaguars and it was thusly called because, originally, it was all about saving endangered jaguars. However, it now focuses mainly on sloths, monkeys and raptors. No, not the dinosaurs, but the birds of prey. Which makes it safe for you to go to. They rescue the animals, care for them at the centre and then reintroduce them back into nature as soon as it is convenient.
For those of you who want to stay more in Costa Rica and are interested in activities such as this one, you should know the centre is happy to accept volunteers. The minimum time period is three weeks.
Otherwise, you can take a tour, which is available in the morning and evening, breakfast or dinner included. This is another great opportunity for you to show off the backpack we were suggesting above. You can wear a pair of high-waisted shorts with a crop top and a pair of stylish sneakers with a funky design. It’s all about having fun at this location!
#4. You need to go to the Cacao Trails
How much do you love chocolate? This is your chance to see everything related to it and to the marvellous cocoa bean. Situated halfway between Cahuita and Puerto Viejo de Talamanca in Hone Creek, this location is actually a botanical garden. You will see an opulent orchard filled with bromeliads and heliconias.
And, of course, a museum dedicated to chocolate and an actual factory. The museum houses a few exhibits related to the indigenous and Afro-Caribbean culture and the chocolate factory makes the sweets in traditional ways.
What to wear? We suggest that for your date with chocolate you wear a dress. A white, cotton or linen dress, to ward off the sun, a pair of flat golden sandals and a big sun hat with flowers should do the trick and make you look stunning.
#5. Simply eat
We suggest you find all the little local restaurants and try the local cuisine. Costa Ricans have very tasty dishes, rich in culture, diversity, and flavours. You will, probably, recognize a few staple dishes from the Latin American basic cuisine. The difference is that Costa Rican food is much healthier, a bonus for you and your body.
A few of their traditional dishes include:
• Casado – the most common dish there. It’s made with beans, rice, bell peppers and onions, to which fried plantains and any type of meat are added.
• Ceviche – this is a famous tapa or appetizer, made from fresh raw fish to which citrus juices and spices and herbs have been added.
• Olla de carne – this is a deliciously rich stew, made from big chunks of beef, carrots, chayotes, plantains, yuccas, sweet potatoes, green plantains, and camotes.
• Sopa de mariscos is basically seafood soup. It’s tomato based, rich in shrimp, squid, fish, clams, mussels, and vegetables.
• Bizcochos, which are baked cheese and cornmeal dough rings.
• Chicharones – make sure not to miss this one. They are heavenly bits of pork, slowly roasted until they are juicy and delicious
However, one of the best things about going out to eat, as every fashionista knows, is that you get to parade your beautiful outfits. Going out to eat every warm Costa Rican night will give you the chance to show off your most beautiful dresses, so make sure to pack them all. A few pairs of high heels won’t hurt either.
Here are the top 5 destinations in Costa Rican lands and what you can wear to visit them. Remember to pack light and be prepared for hot weather.
But light doesn’t mean unfashionable, so under no circumstances should you leave your little black dress and your favourite pumps at home!