Pack for a Tropical Vacation

Going to the tropics? Pack light but pack right.

By FamilyTime


If the idea of lolling on a sandy beach or next to a luxurious pool is beckoning you to a tropical island this winter, be sure to go prepared.

The trick is to bring just enough without overpacking. You are heading for the islands to escape fuss and bother!

At Least Two Bathing Suits
You will need a couple of bathing suits. Don't count on buying one at the resort hotel or in town. While available, they will be far more expensive than those you can get at home.

Even if you are not a big swimmer, you will probably wear your suit every day when you go to the pool, the beach, or when you go for a sail.

Shorts and More
When you're not swimming or snorkeling, you will be shopping or sightseeing. Good-looking, loose-fitting walking shorts will serve you well. Bring a few pairs in neutral colors (not white!) to pair with colorful t-shirts and polo shirts.

Sandals are fine for tripping back and forth from your room to the beach, but for hiking or shopping, pack comfortable shoes. Depending on what you like to do, you will also need tennis or running shoes for walking, running, and sports.

It won't rain on your vacation. But just in case, bring lightweight raingear. Raincoats and rain hats are all that you will need.

Moonlit Nights
Nothing is too formal in the tropics, but for special nights you will want casual dressy clothes--a nice dress and sports jacket. And for the ladies, don't forget a wrap - trade winds can make evenings cool.

Be sure the shoes you pack can be worn with the fancier clothing.

Extras, Extras
Make sure your hotel or condo supplies beach towels. If not, bring several!

When winter winds howl at home, it's hard to imagine the sun beating down on your shoulders, but the closer you get to the Equator, the stronger it is. You will need sunscreen and sun glasses. And don't forget hats!

Finally, bring a sense of fun.

Leave your work, your worries, and your schedule at home. Arrive in the islands without an agenda but with a goal to relax. Let the hot sun, warm sea, and bright colors lull you into forgetting day-to-day anxieties.