Costa Rica suggestions for young couple?
Replies: 4 - Last Post: Jun 9, 2012 4:28 PM Last Post By: SoloHobo
Jun 7, 2012 11:42 PM
Costa Rica suggestions for young couple?My husband and I are considering going to Costa Rica from ~6/28 - 7/10. We're both young, laid back, and just want to have fun and explore a bit. Things we enjoy/ are looking into doing include:
-nature stuff (volcanos, rainforests, etc)
-possibly hang gliding
-open to anything really!
Being that we live in a big city as is, we'd like to spend little time in one (but enough to explore around).
Hotels we stay in don't need to be fancy - as long as we get our private room - we'll be more than happy.
Any suggestions would be GREATLY appreciated - including suggested itineraries, things to do, places to stay. Also I'd appreciate if folks could share realistic costs.
Jun 8, 2012 6:01 AM
1Have you read anything about the country? You dont mention one area or place you wish to see?
I suggest you get a guidebook, the LPP or Moon is best, and look at all your options and see what appeals to you. You also need to decide whether you want to rent a car for part or all of the trip. There are a plethora of national parks and eco systems to explore, and lot of options for fun activity. There are also two airports, San Jose (SJO) and Liberia (LIR) which can determine how and where you are going.
The main tourist circuit with limited time for most, is to go to Arenal Volcano area 2-3 nights, Monteverde Cloudforest 2 nights, and then a beach on the pacific. Another popular option is to go to Arenal Volcano, Tortuguero Canals, and the caribe beaches. But, the highlight of CR is really the nature, and the best place on the the planet for bio diversity, is Corcovado-Osa. Not easy to get to and not so cheap either, its the ultimate, allow 4-5 days when all said and done, its 10 hours from SJ, so many people fly in or out or both.
As for snorkeling, its just so so in CR overall, dark sand and rough surf make its a hit and miss activity, and in rainy season who knows what the conditions will be, afterall, CR is a surf destination. On the caribe side you can have calmer waters and more protected areas to snorkel, but the reefs here are few and a sad state of affiars, There are no reefs on the Pacific side. The most popular area is Playa Bellena, south of Playa Dominical on way to the Osa, and also there is some at Isla Tortugua off Jaco or Montezuma via boat as a day trip.
Ziplines I despise, a activity just for tourist at the hands of greedy gringos, but the best place for this activity in Monteverde Clouforest.
Hang gliding I am not sure about, there is a guy with a ultralight near Playa Uvita, next door to Playa Bellena that gives rides.
Windsurfing and KiteBoarding is popular, in both Lake Arenal and also on Pacific coast, just google or refer to handbook.
Rafting a river is very popular, and the Rio Pacaure is a blast, you can do this via getting picked up in San Jose or the caribe towns of Playa Cahuita or Pt Viejo. This is a must do IMO.
Surf lessons, endless beaches for this.
Other areas I prefer over the touristy places like Monteverde, is Rincon, Tenerio/Celeste Waterfalls, and also Cano Negro, and Selva Verde.
Taking public transport between these places above and all the popular places requires time and planning, there is also shuttles like Interbus, about $40PP per leg.
Fun beach towns to hang out with surfers, backpackers and kick back are:
Caribe, Pt Viejo beaches to Manzanillo, Playa Cocles/Punta Uva are great.
Places to avoid:
Playa Papagayo, Jaco, Quepos/Manual Antonio. (very touristy)
Cabina w/private bath- $35 to $60
Shuttles $35-$40PP per leg
Water taxi's $35-$40PP
Rafting river $110
Surf lessons $60
Park Entrance fees $5 to $10 ish
Dinner $10 to $20 depends where
Rental Car $55 day w/insurance
$75 day for two is budget. Costa Rica is not as cheap as it once was, inflation has made food cost soar.
Jun 8, 2012 10:08 AM
Jun 8, 2012 7:20 PM
3Sweet - thanks a lot SoloHobo & PhilLox. Your details are very helpful. I'm open to other countries in Central or South America instead too. Right now Costa Rica just seem to be the easiest. Let me know if folks feel differently.
Regarding driving in CR: is it safe? I've been to China and Pakistan, and wouldn't dare drive there... is the driving style similar?
Jun 9, 2012 4:28 PM
4Well foreigners cant drive in China, and then your comparing a country with 1.5 billion people to a country with 4.5 million, so basically most the driving is like rural/main roads, mostly two lanes, a lot of mountains and main rule is dont drive at night, as everything shares the road with you, from children and farm animals...its the way to get around CR if your budget permits...
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