Many ancient civilizations grew out of tropical areas where the there was sufficient rain and sun, therefore many of the worlds favorite historical destinations sit in these tropical areas. Therefore rain, strong sun, and extreme heat are frequent particularly in Latin America and Southeast Asia. It’s often hot and sticky. Even during the dry season rain can occur at anytime. During rainy season you could be getting wet for weeks. You just have to grin and bear it. Other locations such as Egypt and coastal Peru are in the middle of arid desert where the temperature can reach extremes. Protection against the sun, such as sun block and sun glasses, in these locations is especially important.

Laws and Regulations

Strict laws are often in place to protect ancient sites, although they are rarely enforced. To ensure that future generations can see the same ruins and historical sites that we can there are certain steps to take that all should follow. Refraining from touching walls, sculptures, staying on marked trails and paths, not climbing on ruins, and respecting plants and animals are all rules to stand by. Take photos, but leave no footprints.

In many impoverished countries guides and even guards often try to sell small stones or relics from ancient sites to tourists. In most cases these are highly illegal or even fake. Most countries have severe restrictions against taking their cultural heritage out of the country and in some cases people have been sentenced to severe prison sentences.

Food and Water

When traveling in a strange country eating strange foods and the chance to drink unfiltered water is quite common, as are certain ailments. Medicines to counter these travel illnesses are recommended such as antibiotics and diarrhea medicine. Only drink bottled water in tropical areas, as the chance for cholera and water borne diseases is still high in many tropical countries. If you cannot get bottled water or want to cut down on your plastic bottle waste try iodine tablets, purifying drops, or water filters.


In tropical areas found in the Americas, Africa, and Southeast Asia protection/vaccinations for malaria and yellow fever may be necessary. To combat malaria there are several things you can do. Malaria tablets such as doxycycline or mefloquine are recommended to prevent the sickness, although you need to check which pill works in which part of the world as some mosquitoes are resistant to some medicines. The best protection against malaria though is basic protection against mosquitoes such as bug spray (best with DEET), mosquito nets, wearing long sleeves, mosquito coils, and the countless other remedies.

Sand flies/no-see-ums are tiny little insects common in many tropical areas that dig into your skin and leave irritating little bites that turn into big red welts. There’s no good way of stopping these nasty creatures except wearing long clothes. Some sprays and lotions may help, but none are one hundred percent effective. Always consult with your doctor before entering a strange country.