Resources

  • Ministry of Tourism (www.elsalvador.travel) El Salvador's official tourism website is an outstanding starting point for your trip.
  • SalvaNATURA (www.salvanatura.org) Environmental conservation website with useful information about the country's many national parks.
  • Lonely Planet (www.lonelyplanet.com/el-salvador) Destination information, hotel bookings, traveler forum and more.

Top Tips

  • El Salvador is small and its attractions are easily accessible. To avoid lugging luggage on and off crowded buses, consider basing yourself in one place and making day trips.
  • Plan in advance to avoid traveling after dark. Always check bus times to make sure you don't get stranded.
  • Salvadorans tend to eat well at breakfast and lunchtime, and come evening there may be nothing available but pupusas. Take your main meal at midday for a better range of options.

What to Take

  • Plenty of sunscreen in the dry months, and wet-weather gear in the rainy season
  • Suitable footwear for climbing volcanoes and hiking in El Salvador's national parks
  • Earplugs – nights can be noisy and walls thin
  • A small day pack and money belt

What to Wear

Salvadorans generally dress quite conservatively. Men rarely wear shorts, unless at the beach, while women usually refrain from revealing too much skin. Casual, comfortable clothes are fine. It can be cool in the evenings in mountainous areas, so bring a light jacket.

Pre-departure Checklist

  • Make sure your passport is valid for six months.
  • Check for malaria and dengue fever updates, and talk to your doctor about precautions.
  • Make sure your ATM and/or credit card works overseas.
  • Read the surf forecast and book private lessons.
  • Contact a language school to inquire about intensive Spanish classes.