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I am pieces of all the places I have been and the people I have loved. I've been stitched together by song lyrics, book quotes, adventure, meaningful conversations, moonlight, and the smell of a good meal.

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5/16/2021

What To Pack For Your Costa Rica Yoga Retreat or Teacher Training

Packing for a yoga retreat or teacher training in Costa Rica can be daunting, to say the least. Residing in the jungle or a rainforest for several weeks to months can be hard to wrap your mind around but, rest assured – you may need less than you think.

My Yoga Teacher Training in Costa Rica was lovely but could have been burdensome + cruel without proper preparation & gear. Luckily, the host of my teacher training provided a general packing list but I did find there were necessary items not listed. I suggest you check with your host to see if they have a specific packing list for your event then use the list below as a supplement.

photo of yoga at Danyasa Yoga

clothing

  • LIGHTWEIGHT + MOISTURE WICKING + COMFORTABLE YOGA CLOTHES – consider clothing that is breathable + will dry out quickly because Costa Rica’s weather is wet & humid
  • A FEW SUNDRESSES OR SKIRTS – every now & then, it feels good to strip out of your yoga pants and slip into a sundress, have a few on-hand just in case
  • LIGHTWEIGHT HOODIE OR JACKET – evenings & morning can be chilly, some evenings call for cozy wear
  • LIGHTWEIGHT PONCHO – if you are traveling during Costa Rica’s rainy season, a packable poncho can be a lifesaver – I like this <a href="http://<a target="_blank" href="https://www.amazon.com/gp/offer-listing/B08X6VSZZN/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=1789&creative=9325&creativeASIN=B08X6VSZZN&linkCode=am2&tag=cristalash-20&linkId=f026dfe19f3f9d6435641c1282665096">this oneone
  • 2 SWIMSUITS – I suggest one for comfort, one for cute + consider a swimsuit that wears well underneath your yoga clothing in the event you need a quick beach break
  • SARONG OR COVER-UP – a sarong that doubles as a scarf for chilly meditative mornings is key
  • A CASUAL OUTFIT FOR ECO TOURS + FREE TIME – lightweight, quick-drying clothing is suggested – avoid denim
  • GRADUATION/CEREMONY DRESS – some retreats + most YTT’s will have a graduation or closing ceremony & some will have suggested dress codes – if unclear, reach out to the host

accessories

  • STRAW HAT – a hat will help prevent sunburns – I suggest straw hats because they are lightweight, pack well, and dry quickly
  • SUNGLASSES – if you’re worried about losing or damaging your sunglasses, bring a few cheap pairs
  • BANDANA / HEADBANDS / HAIR TIES – humidity + sweat can be the arch nemesis to your ‘do, prepare yourself with options to tame your mane
  • SMALL UMBRELLA – rainy season is May to mid-November
  • INSPIRING STONE JEWELRY – although I wouldn’t suggest expensive jewelry, a few wearable gemstones can offer a way to express yourself + feel beautiful. note: there are plenty of local jewelry makers in Costa Rica to buy from
  • FLIP FLOPS – if you’re practicing yoga + beachin’ most days, you won’t need much for footwear – a pair or two of flip flops should suffice
  • WATERPROOF SHOES – if you’re taking an eco adventure or hiking through the jungles (or waterfalls!), consider packing a pair of waterproof shoes – Teva offers plenty of great options
  • 2 TOTES OR DAY PACKS – whether you’re packing for class, the beach, or an adventure, you’ll need bags – consider taking a few so that you don’t have to unpack + repack every day
  • EARPLUGS + EYEMASK – the jungle can be noisy, you may have a roommate or two, and there may be lights outside of your window
photo of a yoga teacher training in Costa Rica

personal items / toiletries

  • TWEEZERS – maintain your brows without makeup – tweezers can also be used to remove splinters
  • NAIL POLISH – if you wear nail polish, take the bottle for touch-ups
  • NAIL CLIPPERS / FILE – I’ve never regretted having a nail file on hand
  • NATURAL SUNSCREEN – be sure to find a sunscreen that is reef-safe + non-toxic. refer to this list for brands to try
  • LIP BALM W/SPF – your lips are arguably one of the most crucial areas to protect
  • FEMININE PRODUCTS – don’t forget
  • INSECT REPELLENT – I use a DIY insect repellent that contains Citronella + Lavender + Lemongrass + Tea Tree essential oils + fractioned coconut oil which I can use as a light body moisturizer as well – unlike other insect repellents, this all-natural formula never feels sticky or gross, and the smells naturally dissipate
  • LAVENDER ESSENTIAL OIL – can be useful in a variety of ways including: calm sunburns, acts as anti-itch, antiseptic, antibacterial, helps you get a good nights sleep
  • SHAMPOO + CONDITIONER + BODY WASH – retreat centers may or may not offer these essentials + they may or may not be good quality
  • BODY SCRUB + MOISTURIZER – jungle/ocean/yoga activities can be rough on the skin
  • HAIR PRODUCTS – if your hair becomes a frizzy cluster when hit with humidity, consider bringing some products that will tame your mane
  • WET WIPESthese all-natural wipes are made for all over use
  • LAUNDRY WASH – you may want to do laundry if you will be in Costa Rica for a long period of time – you may be able to find a local laundry service, this biodegradable wash will allow you to clean your clothes on your own

Don’t expect to find many of these items in CR if you forget to pack them. Shopping in CR is minimal – close to non-existent in some areas, even for items like bug spray and sunscreen.

gear + extras

  • CAMERA – Costa Rica is a beautiful place and you’ll want to capture it however, you may consider that you won’t have much time to take photos if you are attending a teacher training or retreat
  • WATERBOTTLE – save money + the land – most hosts will offer water to refill your bottle
  • LAPTOP – you may or may not need a laptop for photo dumping, class projects, or work – you may or may not have access to wifi
  • CHARGERS – don’t forget to pack these!
  • HEADLAMP – evenings in the jungle or on the beach can be dark, strap up for safety
  • JOURNALS + NOTEBOOKS – consider taking several, you may end up taking more notes than you anticipate
  • A FEW GOOD BOOKS + REQUIRED READING – most retreat centers won’t have TV’s and some won’t offer wifi so I recommend having some good reads on hand. if you are assigned required reads, be sure to have them on site
  • PENS/PENCILS – a variety of colors will help you take more interesting notes
  • NOTECARDS – can be helpful for learning sanskrit terms + yoga poses
  • CASH – although credit cards are widely accepted, but not everywhere & they oftentimes come with additional fees – American dollars & local colones are accepted + appreciated everywhere
  • MESH LAUNDRY BAG – sweaty + damp clothing can get stinky after several days – keep a mesh bag to store your stinky laundry and/or transport it to a local laundry service
  • SNACKS – healthy, affordable snacks can be hard to find in small Costa Rican towns, if you are a snacker, pack them in
photo of yoga teacher training

paperwork

  • PASSPORT – be sure to store your passport in a humidity resistant pack, the humidity can deform it
  • DRIVERS LICENSE – especially if you are renting a car while visiting
  • CREDIT CARDS as backup but use mostly cash
  • TRAVEL CONFIRMATIONS / ITINERARY – you may not have internet access to view these while in Costa Rica so keep printed copies
  • COPIES OF YOUR PASSPORT + CREDIT CARDS -keep copies or scan + e-mail them to yourself in case you lose them
  • CREDIT CARD CONTACT NUMBERS – you’ll want to have the numbers handy in case you lose them

You may not have access to phones & e-mail while you are in CR so make copies of anything that is important to you JUST IN CASE. Before you travel, print directions for your first destination if you are renting a vehicle or will be driving.

  1. […] check with your host to see if they have a specific packing list for your event + I have created this packing list specific for Costa Rica […]

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