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Trip Report Live from Costa Rica...

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Finally here, after 6 months of planning!!!

I figured I'd update this thread during our stay in lieu of a journal, which I never end up doing.

The family is myself, wife Daniela (from now on 'D"), and our boys Ryan (8) and Christopher (6).

We arrived yesterday and took a taxi to the Pura Vida hotel just outside of Alajuela - everything I read here about this hotel is true. Actually, it is better as pictures don't do it justice - just beautiful. We were greeted by Carlos who promptly got us a drink and took my boys around the property to pick fruit. Couldn't ask for better hospitality. Pura Vida had arranged our car rental ahead of time and an agent with our car met us and dropped off our 4x4 - so easy.

Afternoon was spent getting lost in the hills (needed directions from local children) on the way to the Doka coffee tour, which was very well run and informative. Pouring rain from 4PM through the night, but it was okay since we were just driving around, lost again, trying to find a restaurant we read about in a guide book on the outskirts of Alajuela (finally found it and had a great typical local meal).

This morning we were awakened by roosters at 5:30 (weather is PERFECT) and we are planning to check out the farmer's market, playground in town, and then drive up to Arenal for three nights at AOL followed by two at Nayara, then on to a night in Tarcoles (Cerro Lodge) and 5 nights in Manuel Antonio (Tulemar).

Thanks to all here for the invaluable help in planning!!!!

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