Advice for future students- Part 1 (Orientation 1)
Hey everyone this is my first post that I am doing for future students of IFSA of things I think would have been helpful to know during my experience. I am hoping on doing a few of these posts through my time here, hope you find them helpful!
So here is the lowdown for the first week of Orientation!
When packing for Monteverde something you should keep in mind is that Monteverde is CHILLY and also it will be misting/sprinkling about the whole time you are there. So in that respect you will want to be sure to pack sweater(s), long sleeve shirts, pants. Another thing to keep in mind is that depending where you live you will be walking quite a distance to the Institute where you will begin Spanish classes, have charlas etc. And when you go on the hike at the end of the week, whatever you are wearing on your feet will become very muddy. So my suggestion is to either have old sneakers packed or to wear something easily cleanable like waterproof hiking boots. Another important tidbit is DO NOT pack shorts for Monteverde. On our housing agreement there was a condition that you agreed to not wear shorts. In all honesty though, you will probably not want to wear shorts any way. Ok, here is a comprehensive list of what I would pack if I did it all over again.
-3 pairs of pants (jeans, athletic leggings, athletic capri leggings)
-3 long-sleeve shirts (we received a t-shirt when we arrived)
-warm pajamas (Long pants, thermal top)
-4-5 pairs of socks (mix regular, hiking)
-4 days worth of underwear
-hiking boots/dirty tennis
-shoes to wear inside house (I used my TOMS)
-shampoo, conditioner, soap, toothbrush, toothpaste, hairbrush
-notebook, pencil, folder (Spanish classes)
-gift for host family (more on that in a later post)
And that should be all you need, you can bring your laptop… but I did not find that I used it very often. Also it is important to know that everything that you do not bring to orientation you leave at the hotel in a locked room. Bring a little bit of money, but you really do not need a lot… just for buses, maybe an ice cream or a souvenir from the coffee tour at the end.
Also there are some pictures I have with this post to demonstrate
Hope this is helpful, and if you have any questions feel free to ask me, even if it is this time next year and you need advice on how to pack before you leave!
*Extra note on hiking boots: unless you plan to hike on your own or take an ecology class with giras, you probably do not need to buy them and tennis shoes will work just fine!