costa rica :: what we packed


Before we left for Costa Rica, I spent a lot of time thinking about what to pack. A lot. I wanted to make sure we had everything we’d need. But I didn’t want to overpack. It can be a hard balance to strike. Right?

We had to take a travel crib for Willa, so I decided it made the most sense to take one big suitcase for the three of us. I have an old hardshell Samsonite suitcase that is always overweight if you fill it with clothes, but since the travel crib takes up half of it and only weighs 7 pounds, you can fill the rest of the space and still sneak in under the weight limit.


willa’s clothes:
4 dresses
3 short-sleeved onesies
3 t-shirts
1 long-sleeved shirt
3 pairs leggings
1 pair shorts
1 sweater
1 light cardigan
1 full-piece pjs
1 sunhat
2 bathing suits
1 swim diaper
1 sunglasses
1 pair sandals
1 pair Crocs
1 pair running shoes


my clothes:
2 maxi dresses
1 short dress
1 pair lightweight pants*
1 pair cropped legging
2 pairs shorts
2 t-shirts
1 lightweight blouse
1 sweatshirt
1 athletic t-shirt
4 tank tops
2 bikinis
1 sports bra
1 regular bra
2 pairs socks
running shoes
flip flops


non-clothing items:
2 small bags of toiletries
5 Clif bars
5 Lärabars
powdered goat milk
2 sippy cups
2 water bottles
travel highchair
canvas tote (for beach, groceries etc.)
1 small bag of toys
3 storybooks
2 small notebooks + crayons
1 book each for dan and me
baby carrier
travel crib


I didn’t include a list of what Dan packed, but it he brought less than I did. Although men’s clothes take up more room.

After our 10 days away, I was pretty pleased with how the packing worked out. Overall, we brought just the right amount of stuff. I washed a few things in the sink mid-trip, but not much. Mostly just stuffed the sand-filled clothes in bags at the end of the trip. (Oh yes, bags! I pack everything in gallon-sized zip-lock bags. You have to roll them to save space. Willa likes to join in and roll anything she can get her hands on. It’s not always that helpful but it’s so darn cute.)

There were, however, a few things I wish I’d packed:
another beach cover up (that sun was hot!)
dish soap
cutlery + travel knife


*When I go on a long trip to a warm-weather place, I like to bring a pair of “vacation pants.” Really this started when I was in Thailand and bought way too many pairs of what I call “hammer pants” but I believe are actually called harem pants. Or maybe it’s fisherman pants? Whatever their name is, I’m sure it’s inappropriate. But they’re absurdly comfortable, and you should get yourself a pair. On this trip, I brought a slightly more mainstream pair from Target (but bought via thredUP). Vacation pants can come in many forms, they just make you feel relaxed. You know, like you’re on vacation.

2 thoughts on “costa rica :: what we packed

  1. Pingback: mexico :: what we packed | peach melba toast

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