Hi guys, I know this has probably been posted quite a bit, but I went through several posts and couldn't find the exact answer I was looking for.
I actually have a couple questions.
The first is about Malaria. I know it's a debate among many people, but I don't feel comfortable with taking malaria meds. I don't like what I have heard or read so I was wondering what countries in Central America would I be fairly safe in not taking the meds. I know Belize is alright because I have talked with my program directors there and they said they don't take the meds, but I want to volunteer outside of Belize too. So any advice about different countries would be appreciated!
Also I want to do this trip without flying. I actually would really like to try and go by bus and train, but I don't know where to even start. The first program I am going to be in is in Belize. Then whatever country (ies) are safe enough to be in without malaria meds and eventually back up to the USA. If you could provide me with any info on that too I'd be so thankful. I have been researching for months and have come up with nothing. Thanks guys!
We would need to know more about your plan in order to provide detailed advice. Are you planning to stay in CA only, or also going south? The most general advice re malaria would be that at altitudes over 1500mts you don't need to take medication at all. That means that the whole Andean region is pretty safe.
Re transportation; it is certainly possible to get by without flying, I much applaud your resolve. Dbloom seems to know a lot about CA, so he could probably help you out there. In SA, you can get virtually anywhere by bus, so there's no need to worry.
Thanks for your response! The plan is first to go to Belize because that's where my first volunteer program is at. Then I'm kind of not decided in my plans. I want to volunteer (only in central america for now - no further down than Panama), but I would rather stay out of countries where Malaria pills are absolutely necessary. It would be nice if the countries were easy to get to from Belize. So, as of now I'm trying to figure out which countries I'd be safe in not taking malaria meds....then figure out the transportation issue from Belize...I'm also trying to figure out how to get to Belize from Vermont.