If you’re about to head off on the adventure of a lifetime, but have hit a wall on the packing front, never fear – help is on hand to tell you all the must-have items to make your trip a successful and stress-free one.
- The Basics
Due to its proximity to the equator, the weather in Colombia is not seasonal. So, it matters less when you go and more where you go.
The Highlands / Coffee Region / Bogotá = cool rainy climates. Pack layers and a waterproof jacket!
Caribbean Coast = hot and humid. Pack light clothing, sunglasses, and a hat. Don’t forget your suncream!
Hiking holidays = Can consist of jungle treks and varied weather conditions. Pack lightly – you’ll need hiking boots, insect repellent, sun cream, and layers which you can easily put on and take off if you get too hot/cold. Take an extra comfy pair of shoes or flip flops for when you are relaxing at the campsite and possibly a headlamp in order to find your way around in the dark (without wasting precious phone battery!)
Water purification tablets are recommended for the Lost City trek, but these are available in Colombia.
If you need rain boots but don’t have space, there is often the option to rent these for a small fee on your trip so look into it before you go!
City Holidays = If you’re spending time in Colombia’s main cities such as Bogotá, Medellín, and Cartagena, be sure to pack comfy shoes and sun protection for when you’re exploring the city. Take a small backpack or bumbag in order to keep all your essentials with you and in sight at all times.
If you’re not sure what to do once you arrive in Colombia, check out this great selection of activities here to give yourself an idea of what you’d like to do!
2. Hostel Tips
Does your hostel provide bedding and a towel? Double check! Make sure to pack a towel and a sleeping bag if not.
Padlock – Keep all of you belongings safe and secure in your room, or if provided by the hostel, a locker.
Flip flops – 2 words = communal bathrooms!
The Colombian currency is Colombian Pesos. If possible try to take this with you to avoid costly ATM charges or being Gringo-d with dodgy exchange rates.
Alternatively, take a currency card with you in order to withdraw money and make transactions with no costs. They act just like a normal credit card without the international fees, and convert the money into the local currency automatically. A great example used personally by me is Revolut – https://revolut.com/.
STUDENTS : Be sure to take your Student ID cards in order to get discounted prices on entry to all of Colombia’s national parks!
Photocopies of all important documents
Check your VISA requirements
Yellow fever vaccine document (you may be required to present it at the airport if you’re travelling to the Amazon)
GoPro – Colombia is full of astonishing scenery and great places to practice adventure sports, so an action camera like a GoPro is perfect for capturing some of your best moments.
Waterproof casing – Great for getting cool snaps of awesome scuba diving or thrilling white water rafting!
Notepad – Make a note of any important Spanish terms you might need and any that you learn along the way.
A good book – If you’re an avid traveller you will know that a book is a great way to kill time when you’re stuck on a bus or waiting at an airport.
Water bottle – Travelling can use lots of energy especially in hot climates, as you may find in Colombia, and exploring cities and nature. Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate! Buy a water bottle with a clip for your backpack for extra convenience.
Swimmers – Whether it’s into a natural swimming hole up in the jungle, into the crystal waters of the Caribbean Sea, or checking into your hostel to find communal showers (shudder), it’s more than likely you’ll be taking a dip at some point!
¡Que tengas un buen viaje!
If you’d like more information on the liveliest city’s to explore and most adventurous treks in Colombia, download the TheBesty app to book the best tours and activities, discover fun things to do, and find the guaranteed lowest prices on hotel bookings – all in Latin America.