Mexico's Eco-Friendly Hotels

Essential gear for a Mexico eco-vacation
Spa in Tulum, Riviera Maya, Mexico
Spa in Tulum, Riviera Maya, Mexico (Dylan Lloyd)

Here are some highly recommended items to pack for your trip to an eco lodge in Mexico:

A necessity at an off-the-grid beach hut, a headlamp makes it easy to take nature walks, read in bed, find the bathroom at night, and of course to check for giant spiders before crawling into your sheets. Petzl Zipka; $44.95

A lantern brings a little light into a lodge without electricity and becomes especially useful for finding your pajamas in a dark suitcase, playing a late night card game, or late night room service. Things to remember: Keep it relatively small and easy to pack, make sure it's battery operated, and look at the length of time it will last. Essential Gear's Grenade LED lantern ($44.95) is perfect. Just remember to turn it off and really experience the lack of electricity a bit. You'll never see stars like that again.

You won't regret bringing two comfortable bathing suits along, and make sure that at least one isn't an itsy-bitsy, teeny-weeny bikini. You don't want to be pulling out wedgies while hiking to a cenote in the jungle. Try Victoria's Secret Racerback Tankini; top $38, bottom $24

Lightweight, breathable, wicking clothing will keep you comfortable on hikes and day trips in the Riviera Maya. Nau's M1 Tank ($70) offers all of the above in a cute, merino wool package. I wore this top a number of times in Mexico and found it to be an essential item. Another merino wool must have: Horny Toad's Kearny ($76), a track style hoodie that is lightweight, dries quickly, and is soft against the skin. It's ideal as a light cover-up in a warm climate, useful in the evening or after swimming. When I returned from Mexico it became my favorite work-out jacket as well.

You'll also need a pair of beach sandals that dry quickly and are comfortable enough for light hiking. Good choices include footwear from Keen or Teva.

Published: 28 Apr 2010 | Last Updated: 15 Sep 2010
Details mentioned in this article were accurate at the time of publication


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