Shoes/boots for Costa Rica, and other packing help
I'll be spending a month in Costa Rica this July -- during the rainy season. I'm not 100% sure of my plans yet, which makes packing a bit tricky. I know I'll be in Heredia for 2 weeks, then around Samara for another 2. The last two weeks I'll be staying in more rural accomodations. So far I've got all the light, quick dry fabric clothing ready to go, but it's shoes I can't figure out. I'm trying to bring as few as possible, and want to know if it's worth going to buy a pair of hiking boots. I will be doing day excursions from both locations, probably light hiking, zip-linig, and things of that nature.
I am planning on bringing my Keens for sure, and a pair of flip flops. Hopefully only one other pair. I have read though that you want your feet to be covered completely while hiking... Keens will not stop insects from coming in! Although someone suggested wearing socks inside them? Thoughts? Or do I need to suck it up and spend the cash for some proper hiking boots? I don't want bug bitten feet, and want to avoid snakes at all costs. I have regular sneakers, but not sure if that would have enough traction, and drying time could be a problem.
I've also seen some travelers talking about mosquito netting, or sleeping sacks... I'm not sure that those are really necessary, so any thoughts are appreciated. I expect it to be hot in Samara, so not sure that a sleep slack is practical-- but looking for bug protection during the night.
Your suggestions are appreciated!
What we did NOT do, was just ramble along off trail wandering here and there. I would not consider bushwhacking the way I do here in New England.
The general rule seems to be when in the woods, a) Keep your hands to yourself, LOOK before you put your hand down anyplace and b) ALWAYS watch where you are going/watch your steps.
For the most part the critters stay pretty hidden, the majority of wildlife is high in the canopy, but even still, there can be a spider hole within arm's reach.
I would bring a solid pair of sneakers, perhaps all-leather, not the "running" style. I'd also bring a pair of sandals or flip flops for those times you are lounging around whereever you lodge.
My feet have about 40 years of hiking and backpacking on them. Unless you plan to scramble a lot of rocks or go off trail, I don't think you need hiking boots, but you don't want to hike in flipflops or Keens. BTW, most snakes are not on the ground, but in the trees. Keep you eyes wide open.
Regarding netting - it really depends on the acomodations. We stayed in a real room with doors that close and screens that open. I think you only need netting if your accomodation is open-air.
BTW, it's so hot there that things dry pretty quickly. Enjoy your time, it's a gorgeous land.
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