Palawan is paradise itself. The waters are crystal clear, the air is wonderfully fresh and there are beaches galore to explore. The only downside? The mosquitoes are both abundant and ferocious.
And mosquitoes in the tropics aren’t just a pesky nuisance – they can be dangerous. In fact, mosquitoes are considered the most dangerous animal in the world. The tiny, flitty little things may not be what comes to mind when you think “danger!” but these annoying bugs actually kill around 725,000 of us each year.
It’s not their itty bitty stings, of course, that poses the danger – a mosquito’s lethal impact comes from the diseases they carry like malaria, dengue fever, yellow fever, West Nile virus, chikungunya, encephalitis, the recent Zika fever, and the list goes on and on.
Not exactly the sort of thing you want to bring back as a souvenir from your vacation to the tropics.
Which is why you need to know the best ways to keep mosquitoes away – here’s what you want to pack in your bags (and brains) to avoid mosquito bites during your entire vacay!
Mosquito Repellent Clothing
Hands down the easiest way to keep mosquitoes off you is to cover yourself in clothes that mosquitoes cannot stand.
This may not work for the beach, but if you’re planning on hiking the jungles, picking up a set of bug repelling jacket and pants can help you steer clear of mosquitoes, ticks, chiggers and a whole bunch of other annoyances.
Of course, it doesn’t hurt that these mosquito repellent clothes are actually quite stylish and come in a wide variety of styles!
Note: If you’re not ready for a total mosquito repelling wardrobe overhaul – you can just treat the clothes you already have with a safe insect repellent, like Sawyer Product’s Permethrin Clothing Spray.
You weren’t thinking of stepping foot in the tropics without at least a bottle of mosquito repellent, were you? Of course not, that’d be silly.
Most mosquito repellents contain DEET, like Repel 100 Insect Repellent (which works amazingly, by the way), but if you have kids and would prefer DEET-free, natural options, there’s plenty of those, too.
Badger’s Anti-Bug Balm combines a potent blend of mosquito repelling essential oils that’s strong enough to keep bugs away while being gentle enough for children and people with sensitive skin.
And of course, if you’re the DIY type, you can always make your own mosquito repellent!
Here’s a handy little trick that’s super cheap and quite effective – take some dryer sheets with you. We’re not sure why mosquitoes find the smell of Bounce so offensive (note: any brand works), but hey, as long as it works. Plus, it leaves you smelling lovely.
Not any old bath oil, mind you – you want to pick up a bottle or two of Avon’s Skin So Soft. This bath oil is intended to soften skin but for some reason, it also does a brilliant job of keeping bugs away.
Thanks to this, it’s gained a sort of cult following amongst people who would otherwise serve as mosquito magnets.
Take Your Vitamins
Yup, you should’ve been listening to your mom all along: it turns out certain vitamins make you less attractive to mosquitoes. Or rather, mosquitoes are more likely to bite people with certain vitamin deficiencies, namely the B vitamins.
Which is why studies suggest that upping your intake of vitamin B1 (thiamine) can keep mosquitoes away. How? The theory is that the excess vitamin B1 that gets sweated out – and you’ll do plenty of sweating while in Palawan – produces a scent that mosquitoes find disgusting.
So you essentially become healthier and more repulsive to mosquitoes. Win win.
Okay, there you have it – 5 uncommon, clever ways to ward off mosquitoes in Palawan and have a bite-free, itch-free vacation! Have fun and safe travels!