On this page we first show a vacation packing list for tropical travels. But as our team members have traveled to so many countries in the world on business travel,  expeditions or regular pleasure, we decided to provide checking lists for different occasions as well. Click for downloading our packing lists for different trips.

Vacation packing list for Tropical Travel:

  1. Light fast drying camping trousers (not jeans) with zip-off sleeves;

  2. Light windbreaker (jacket) as it can be surprisingly cold at night or in the canoes when it is cloudy and during rain showers;

  3. Shorts. But be very careful. You will be on the water a lot and you may easily get a very bad sun burn. Start out with one hour per day and increase your wearing shorts by an hour per day;

  4. A few long-sleeved outdoors shirts, preferably one per day. Dress shirts for men as worn under a jacket (similar blouses for women) are also suitable, as they are much thinner than T-shirts and when wet, they dry much quicker. So in spite of seeming to be overdressed, you will feel much better in an outdoors or  dress shirt. If not with you, long-sleeved T shirts. Long sleeves are essential against sun burn;

  5. A light sweater;

  6. Wide brimmed hat that cover the ears (The latter quickly get sun-burned);

  7. Comfortable gym shoes or water shoes (check out Salomon Amphibia shoes) that may get wet and sandals for use on the lodge premises (we provide ponchos and rubber boots). Please don't expose you bare feet to the sun as they can get terrible sun burns.

  8. At least 1 pair of clean socks for each day. It is very easy to get fungi or athlete's foot in the humid tropics, so change socks at least once a day;

  9. Insect repellent with DEED (non-spray may be more environmentally friendly);

  10. Sun cream;

  11. Sun glasses;

  12. Bathing suit;

  13. Personal toiletries (we provide bio-degradable soap and shampoo);

  14. Personal medicines;

  15. LED flashlight and batteries. They are very low energy and their batteries last many times longer;

  16. Sufficient cash for any emergencies, eventual expenditures at the lodge, and some money in small denominations for expenditures in the Siona community;

  17. Passport (Obligatory for park registration);

  18. Medium sized suitcase or backpack (space in the canoes is limited);

  19. Some large plastic bags for keeping your clothes dry;

  20. First aid kit. Never leave home without it. Buy a good one for the tropics and before your next trip, check it for its next use;

  21. Neck or waist pouch for your documents and money.


Optional additional items for vacation packing list:

  1. Zip lock bags to keep small items dry. Particularly important if you bring a camera. As soon as it starts raining, you do wise to immediately put your camera in a zip lock bag and put it under your raincoat or rain poncho. If you wait, the atmosphere gets wet. As your body always evaporates, it starts condensing under the poncho that starts cooling in the rain and the atmosphere under your rain clothes becomes extremely humid. When putting your camera away under such circumstances, moisture is very likely to condense on your lenses, even though they are in a closed zip lock bag. Make sure that as soon as you reach a building, you take out the camera out of the bag to let it dry.

  2. Binoculars (Indispensable in the rainforest - it's worth spending a bit of extra money to get a good water proof pair: 8 x 32 or 40 are excellent for poor light conditions under the forest canopy).  

  3. A GPS. Nowadays GPS are very affordable and it is fun to look for the equator!;

  4. A water proof digital camera is ideal for the wet tropics, but of course a regular camera (they shoot much better pictures) will do, as long as you put it in a ziplock bag as soon as it starts raining. Don't forget to take it back out as soon as you are back at the lodge or in the bus as it may fog up and your lens may become damaged;

  5. Extra pair of loose-fitting, fast drying pants (no jeans, they never seem to dry up after a rain shower);

  6. A Birding guide is always fun to have with you. Even if you are not a birdwatcher, it is so much fun to be able to identify that beautiful colorful tropical bird;

  7. For Latin America, the Neotropical Rainforest Mammals by Emmens and Feer is complete and small enough to bring along. For Africa there are several good mammal guides;

  8. Download our printable Bird Lists for your country of travel from


  • This list of travel packing tips for tropical travel is not exhaustive and travelers be advised to consult other sources as well.

  • For a list of travel packing tips for air travel or a packing list for camping, click here: packing lists for different trips.

  • Ahhhh........... Don't forget to bookmark this page. You may need it again in the future.


What makes us different from so many other tour operators?

Just look at the quality of our high resolution pictures. We took them all ourselves. We have thousands of high resolution pictures on this website, that you can see enlarged by clicking on them. These pictures show that we have been everywhere in the country of your interest and really know the details. We are professional explorers and biologists with MSc and PhD.


National Parks Tours Worldwide, a social responsibility and conservation company, is a brand name of the World Institute for Conservation & Environment, registered in the Netherlands with headquarters in the USA.


Phone USA:

(++)(1) 304 - 581 - 7740




Skype: ecotravelworldwide


Parks Man Dr. Daan Vreugdenhil is author of this website. He dedicated his life to the conservation of nature., He was part of the team that selected the first 39 protected areas of Ecuador in the 1970s and he initiated the Cuyabeno Lodge in Ecuador's Amazon in 1985, making him one of the world's eco tourism pioneers. A speaker of 8 languages and having traveled to 80+ countries, Dr. Daan Vreugdenhil has is one of the world's greatest connoisseurs of nature and national parks in the world.