What to Bring to Your Trip to Manuel Antonio: Packing List

Are you choosing Manuel Antonio as your next travel destination? With all the activities you can do here, it’s essential to pack wisely to ensure a comfortable and enjoyable stay. That’s why we’ve gathered a comprehensive list of what to pack for Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica, to help you make the most of your trip.

Discover the ultimate packing list for your unforgettable adventure in Manuel Antonio!

What Should You Bring to Manuel Antonio?

Manuel Antonio has a laid-back atmosphere that encourages relaxed dressing. The locals and fellow travelers opt for athletic wear, beach cover-ups, or easygoing town attire, reflecting the casual vibe of the area.

While there’s no need for extravagant wardrobes, it’s wise to be ready for diverse activities that might require a change of outfit throughout the day.

Furthermore, given the weather shifts, your packing decisions are crucial to ensuring a seamless experience. The distinct seasonal changes significantly influence the available activities and the essential items you should prioritize in your luggage.

Essential clothing and footwear

Dry season

When preparing for your trip during the dry season, ensure your wardrobe is equipped for the warm weather by packing breathable and light fabrics such as cotton or linen. 

To stay cool, include short-sleeved shirts, t-shirts, tank tops, shorts, and simple dresses. You can also bring light long-sleeve shirts, as temperatures may drop slightly in the evenings.

If you’re planning on taking in the sun by the pool or at the beautiful beaches, don’t forget to pack a swimsuit. Moreover, opt for comfortable sandals or lightweight sneakers to explore the national park and engage in outdoor activities.

Keep in mind that during the dry season, the sun can be very strong. For this reason, you should carry a wide-brimmed hat, sunglasses, and high-SPF sunscreen to protect yourself from the intense tropical sun.

Lastly, even though rain is minimal during the dry season, you can have a compact, lightweight rain jacket or sweater on hand for unexpected drizzles.

Rainy season

If you visit from May to mid-December, prioritize quick-drying materials like moisture-wicking fabrics. Opt for lightweight, long-sleeved shirts and pants to protect from rain and insects.

As this season presents a higher chance of rain, bring waterproof footwear such as sturdy hiking boots, hiking shoes, or trail running shoes designed for muddy trails. Be prepared for occasional downpours by packing a durable and waterproof rain jacket, and consider carrying a compact poncho for sudden rain showers.

Keep in mind that the rainy season brings with it an increased presence of insects. As such, we recommend you get a reliable insect repellent to ward off mosquitoes and other bugs. If you leave it at home, you can buy one at local souvenir shops.

Enhance your rain protection with a small, portable umbrella and waterproof backpack, especially when exploring the outdoors! Also, carry a quick-drying travel towel if you get caught in a shower.

Gear for outdoor activities

Dry season

For a perfect day at the beach, consider bringing essentials from home to save money and avoid paying inflated prices for items like flip-flops, beach towels, and swimwear. While these items are available locally, finding bargains might require a trip to Quepos.

To ensure you have your preferred products, including high-SPF sunscreen, tanning lotions, and insect repellent, it’s wise to pack them. Just be sure to check airport regulations beforehand to avoid surprises at security checkpoints.

When it comes to bathing suits, having more than one is a smart move. You can also choose a sportier one for a secure one-piece if you plan on participating in water sports or tours during your stay.

For adventure, wildlife tours, or hiking in Manuel Antonio National Park, wear lightweight, moisture-wicking clothing like quick-dry hiking pants and breathable t-shirts. Don’t forget to wear a hat for sun protection. Similarly, sturdy hiking shoes or boots are a must for navigating jungle trails.

If you’re exploring the Damas monkey mangroves, opt for lightweight shirts and long pants to protect against mosquitoes. Whitewater rafting calls for quick-dry athletic clothing and secure water shoes or athletic sneakers. Canopy zipline tours require comfortable clothing that allows a full range of motion, such as athletic shorts or leggings and a moisture-wicking t-shirt.

Rainy season

Transitioning into the rainy season requires different essentials to navigate the occasional downpours and high humidity. For one, you will need a durable, waterproof jacket or raincoat to shield yourself from the frequent rain showers.

Staying dry is key to maintaining comfort during your outdoor explorations. Choose moisture-wicking and quick-drying fabrics in your clothing, as these materials will help you stay dry in case of unexpected rain.

While hiking boots are essential, consider packing comfortable walking shoes for less intensive activities; they can be practical for exploring the town or enjoying a stroll despite the rain.

Gear up appropriately for the extremely hot weather and sudden rain in Manuel Antonio.

First aid kits and safety products

Ensuring your safety and well-being is a top priority when exploring the area. Check out some of the first-aid and safety essentials to include in your travel kit:

  • Adhesive bandages
  • Antiseptic wipes
  • Pain relievers
  • Adhesive tape
  • Motion sickness medication
  • Anti-inflammatory medication
  • Bug spray
  • Sunscreen
  • Anti-itch cream
  • Aloe vera gel

Personal hygiene products

While hotels in Manuel Antonio typically provide basic hygiene products such as towels and bathing soap, it’s always a good idea to bring your own for specific needs, personal preferences, and any special requirements.

Here are a few that you can carry on:

  • Eco-friendly toiletries
  • Travel-sized shampoo and conditioner
  • Toothbrush and toothpaste
  • Deodorant
  • Sunscreen lip balm
  • Moisturizer
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Facial wipes or tissues


In this era of connectivity, having the right electronics can enhance your travel experience. See the list of some easy-to-carry electronics to pack for your trip:

  • Smartphone
  • Charger
  • Camera
  • Headphones
  • Binoculars
  • Power bank
  • Dry bag for electronics
Capture every moment of your Costa Rica vacation!

Travel Documents and Money

Organizing travel documents and managing your money wisely is vital as you plan your journey.

Take a look at some of the travel documents that you need to include:

  • Passport
  • Visa (if your nationality requires a visa to enter Costa Rica)
  • Flight tickets
  • Accommodation reservations
  • Emergency contacts
  • Driver’s license (if you plan on driving in Costa Rica or Manuel Antonio)
  • Costa Rican Colón (CRC)
  • Credit cards and debit cards

Packing Tips and Tricks for Manuel Antonio

  1. Check the weather forecast closer to your travel dates to make any last-minute adjustments to your packing list.
  2. Make photocopies of important documents, including your passport, credit cards, and travel insurance.
  3. Keep a list of emergency contacts, including local medical facilities and the contact information of your embassy or consulate.
  4. Double-check the charging requirements and power compatibility of your electronics.
  5. Notify your bank of travel dates to avoid issues with card usage abroad.
  6. Keep a small amount of US dollars or euros in case of emergencies.
  7. Plan a daily budget for meals, transportation, and activities.
  8. Bring a reusable water bottle.
Follow our Costa Rica travel tips and get ready for an unforgettable adventure!

Ready to Book Your Trip to Manuel Antonio? Contact Find My Costa Rica Today!

Your trip to Manuel Antonio promises a blend of breathtaking landscapes, outdoor adventures, and vibrant cultural experiences. With our comprehensive packing list, you’re well-prepared to make the most of this tropical paradise.

Our expert team at Find My Costa Rica can assist with tours, provide personalized recommendations, and ensure you have the support you need to create lasting memories in this stunning Costa Rican destination.

Contact Find My Costa Rica to turn your Manuel Antonio adventure into an unforgettable exploration tailored just for you. Book your adventure now!

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