What to take to
Ecuador packing list
to take to Ecuador
partly depends on the nature of your trip and the time of year.
Ecuador's climate varies widely across quite small distances
so your capsule wardrobe for travel
needs to cope with everything from warm
torrential rain, to snow at high altitudes and hot, dry weather on the
beach. A wide-brimmed hat is always a useful addition to
travel packing list.
clothing: Of course, the
kind of social or
business situations you will be in will dictate the components
your capsule wardrobe for Ecuador travel to a certain extent.
a general rule for travel clothing, layers are a practical and
comfortable solution to the
significant daily temperature fluctuations in parts of Ecuador.
In the mountains, the
temperature drops sharply at sundown. In Quito, for example,
it may be t-shirt weather at midday, but you will need a fleece or
jacket by around 6.p.m.
mostly short and slim compared to Europeans or Americans, so don't rely
on being able to buy large clothes or shoes. If your feet are
larger than a European size 42, take all the shoes you will need,
including rubber boots for the rainforest.
Smaller sizes are available to buy in Ecuador.
than flat-chested need to pack all lingerie and swimwear
for the trip as large cup sizes are not available in Ecuador.
capsule wardrobe should include
trousers, which are
travel packing essentials
in the humid costa where jeans can take a week to dry in the rainy
season. The ones with zip-off legs are great for
shorts to long trousers at sunset. A light-weight,
long-sleeved shirt with buttoned cuffs will protect your arms from
travel clothing, such as long
long-sleeved shirts, is
better than insect repellant to prevent bites from
and other potentially disease-carrying insects.
protect you from the sun. Bare feet attract mosquitoes, as do
strong scents and dark colours. Sandals also leave your feet
exposed to leeches, snakes and thorns - good walking boots or
wellingtons are far more suitable for rainforest walks.
Travel towels, also known as
quick-drying towels or microfibre towels, can be useful, but are not
the only option. Some people find a lightweight, quick-drying
sarong wrap (pareo, beach wrap or basically a big rectangle of fabric)
more useful, since it can double as a sheet, mosquito protection, door
curtain, etc. If your high-tech travel towel is the size of a
pocket handkerchief, you will need something to get changed under
anyway. If you really hate thin, synthetic travel towels or miss
your beautiful thick bath towel, a small handtowel and a large sarong
might be a suitable compromise.
- pack all the
medicines you will need for your trip, including malaria tablets if
needed, and a
copy of the prescription. Antiseptic cream is not available
in Ecuador (locals use alcohol as an antiseptic), so you might like to
add this to your medicine list for travel. If you
going off the beaten track, you might consider taking a travel
first-aid kit with sterile needles in case of emergency, also perhaps
some antibiotics. Consult your medical professional or a
specialist travel medicine clinic to draw up a personal travel medicine
list, based on your itinerary, travel conditions and personal health.
insurance is a must on any
packing list. Take a copy of the
policy, preferably in
your travel companion's
whilst you carry their policy in yours. Have a note of the
emergency number for your travel medical insurance handy.
copy online in your email account as
well, especially if you are travelling alone. Some maps are
available in Ecuador, but you may prefer to bring one with you from
home. A guide book is often useful and your preferred title
may not be available in Ecuador.
backpack is often the
most practical type of luggage. Ecuador's roads and pavements
are mostly not flat, so wheeled suitcases are usually more of a
hindrance than a help. Some people suggest buying a travel
locally, so as to look less conspicuous, or wrapping your backpack in a
plastic sack when you travel by bus. You may find it more
convenient to store the
bulk of your luggage in your Quito hotel in a locked suitcase and
travel with a smaller bag
for trips of a few days. Many stores in Ecuador
will ask you to leave large bags at the entrance, so ensure that you
have all your valuables in a small bag that you can keep with
will want to
take good-quality binoculars to Ecuador. Camera equipment is
not easily available, so take all that you will need with you.
You can buy memory cards for digital cameras in larger towns
but prices are not particularly competitive and there is a limited
wind-up torch will be
useful and is more environmentally-friendly than the cheap batteries on
sale in Ecuador which do not last long. Some also double as a
mobile phone charger. Take suitable adaptor plugs if you are
carrying electrical equipment and be aware that the power supply is
unreliable and spikes may damage equipment.
you will be
diving, biking or doing other specialist adventure
activities or sports
in Ecuador, check with your
travel agent whether equipment
available to borrow or hire from the tour operator or
need to take your own.
if you are
going to the Galapagos
Islands or other very sensitive
might consider adding eco-friendly sunscreen, organic
toiletries and biodegradable soap or shampoo to your packing list.
Since the islands are so remote, there are extra packing
requirements for Galapagos tours.
to Take to the Galapagos Islands.
What not to take to Ecuador
What not to take: Apart
from keeping down
the weight of your luggage, buying locally also helps Ecuador's
economy (and may even be cheaper than buying at home). Waste
and recycling facilities are very limited in Ecuador so don't take more
packaging than you need to. Here
are some tips on what you can omit from your travel packing list:
shampoo, toothpaste or soap from home as familiar brands are easily
available. Sunscreen and insect repellent
are widely available, though they may not be a brand you
recognise - buy from shops with a high turnover to ensure they are not
out of date. Sanitary towels are available everywhere,
can be found in chemists or supermarkets in larger towns but usually
bills (anything higher than $20) will probably not be accepted at most
places in Ecuador. Travellers' cheques are a secure way to
carry money for emergencies, but will waste huge amounts of time in the
bank if you use them as your main source of funds and cannot usually be
used to pay directly for goods or services.
mobile phones from
overseas do not seem to work on Ecuador's networks, unless they are
quadband. A mobile
phone can be bought locally for around $50 and pay-as-you-go cards
start at $3.
The variable quality of
services and the brutal
tropical sun will take their toll on clothes, while expensive items may
attract the wrong kind of attention.
jewellry and flashy watches should all be left at home when deciding
what to take to Ecuador.
Take to Ecuador - tips for travel packing essentials and ideas for a
Ideas for outdoor gear and travel clothing, packing tips for
Ecuador travel, travel medicine list.
Backpack or suitcase? Luggage tips for Ecuador.
What not to
take to Ecuador - what is easily available locally and can be left off your travel packing list.