Support TFG by using the links in our articles to shop. We receive a small commission (at no extra cost to you) so we can continue to create helpful free content. As an Amazon Associate, we earn from qualifying purchases made on Amazon in addition to other retailers featured on the blog. Thank you, we appreciate your support!
For a small country, Costa Rica will keep you moving and everyday can be a new adventure. Versatility is the key to packing for a destination with so many different activities, climates, and landscapes. Take a look below for outfit ideas for what to wear in Costa Rica!
What To Wear in Costa Rica
For plane rides I like to wear some of my bulkier items. A maxi dress will keep you warm and are very comfortable on long days of sitting and waiting.
Layer on a denim jacket for warmth and stylish sandals to finish off your travel day outfit.
You’ll want to look your best when you travel! Read my travel tips to Pack Light Stylishly!
With the Pacific on one side and the Caribbean on the other, Costa Rica is not lacking in coastline or water related activities. A trip isn’t complete without white water rafting on the river or paddle boarding on the lake.
In addition to your swimsuit, take along a pair of board shorts and some waterproof sandals to keep you comfy while you play.
If feasible, bring along an extra set of clothes in your daypack to change into after your tour. Also, don’t forget your sunscreen and environmentally friendly bug spray on all your outings.
After your energizing tours, it’s time to make a relaxing stop to one of the many beach towns.
Bring along two swimsuits to alternate between beach days. If you opt for bikinis, choose two that you can mix and match for more options.
Select a light dress for your beach cover-up that can double as an outfit for daytime exploring.
Dress it up with jewelry and add a light jacket for a causal dinner or oceanfront stroll.
Use packing cubes to help you organize and even compress your belongings to maximize your space.
There is a lot of opportunity for adventure activities in Costa Rica. Once you have had your fill of the water make your way inland for trekking and zip lining through the rainforest.
Surprisingly, in can become quite chilly in the cloud forest area especially in the mornings.
A raincoat is ideal for keeping you warm and dry. Use it to cover up a quick-dry tee and cotton shorts.
Light sneakers work well for exploring and can dry quickly overnight if needed.
If you plan on taking one of the popular nighttime tours of the rainforest, it’s a good idea to cover up. A pair of jeans and button down shirt is a great combo for keeping mosquitos and bugs at bay.
In your downtime, while exploring the towns choose a casual outfit that will also work for some of your other activities.
Denim shorts and a stylish shirt are great for any of your shopping and sightseeing outings.
Denim is always a good option because it requires fewer washings and coordinates with everything.
American Eagle White Button-down
For your homebound trip, your pants and cotton shirt will keep you warm and comfortable on the cold plane and while waiting in airports.
Look for a shirt made from a cotton polyester blend. They have the best properties of both materials and are less prone to wrinkling. Wear your sneakers home to free up space in your luggage for your new souvenirs.
All of these items can be mixed and re-worn to create outfits throughout your stay. A small amount of well thought out clothing can go a long way. Be smart about what you pack, and you will have everything you need for a wonderful Costa Rican vacation. Pure Vida!
Any tips for what to wear in Costa Rica? Tell us in the comments!
For more destination packing list, please read:
- Central America Ultra-Minimalist Travel Packing List
- Morocco Packing Tips for Women
- What to Wear in Colombia: Vacation Packing List
- What to Wear when Backpacking Australia
Suggested Travel Sources:
I can wait to use some of these tips!
I spend a lot of time in Costa Rica — For footwear, I swear by Rothys — they are perfect. I wear both the ballerinas and the sneaker daily. Once, I even wore them on a riverwalk – actually in the river. . In the dry season, everything gets dusty, and in the rainy season everything gets muddy. I just wash them and dry them on the balcony for a few hours — good as new.
IM GOING TO COSTA RICA IN MARCH, AND THIS DEFINITELY HELPS ME, I JUST HAVE TO MAKE SURE ABOUT THE WEATHER WHEN THE DATE IS CLOSER
I would bring two bathing suits that dry quickly. Thicker or padded suits may not dry. Nobody likes to put on a wet bathing suit.
I would add a light sweater, especially if you stay in the central highlands or the cloud forest areas – I lived in one sweater under a rain jacket in those regions. Just chilly, even in summer.
Great add! Thanks Phebe 🙂