1st night in Costa Rica

Old Mar 9th, 2010, 10:43 AM
  #1  
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1st night in Costa Rica

Landing at 7pm on first night of trip want to avoid staying in San Jose. Is it safe to drive at night to Manual Antonio or near Sarapiqui River area so our family can do an activity first thing the next morning like rafting or zip lining etc. I presume in country flights do not go at night?
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Old Mar 9th, 2010, 10:48 AM
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I don't think you'd want to make those drives at night; it can get very foggy/rainy, the roads have a lot of twists and turns, and things aren't well marked or illuminated. Better to stay the first night somewhere and head out the next morning, or if you want to, hire a private driver to do the driving for you. Xandari is a great place to spend the first night if you decide to do that, only about 20 minutes from the airport, but a beautiful property with gorgeous views and a nice open air restaurant.
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Old Mar 9th, 2010, 11:02 AM
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Most definitely wouldn't try heading out from the airport that night. You're correct that inter-country flights don't fly that late either. Good idea to stay somewhere near SJO 1st night and do your rafting trip the next day. Orquideas is a good choice and they have some good day trips and rafting from there. Probably wouldn't splurge since it sounds like you'll only be there for sleep time.
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Old Mar 9th, 2010, 02:01 PM
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www.casabellarita.com

www.mybeaconescazu.com

2 nice places with free airport pickup on your way.

Rest in a nice place after your long flight

safer and see more pretty stuff driving in the day
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Old Mar 9th, 2010, 02:10 PM
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Orquideas is an ok choice (not my first), as long as they come to get you at the airport (well worth the price; the drive is very confusing, especially in the dark!) You can easily get your rental car brought to you in the a.m., a good way to start versus wasting time going to the rental office (that will work for anywhere in the vicinity of the airport).
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Old Mar 9th, 2010, 06:04 PM
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Stay at the Beacon very nice or Out of Bounds Bed and breakfast. Then in the am jump on the NEW highway out of Escazu/Santa Ana and you will be at the beach in one hour then another 1.5 hours to Manuel Antonio
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Old Mar 9th, 2010, 07:36 PM
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I appreciate all the suggestions. Based on the times of our flights to and from the US we basically have to stay near San Jose on the first and last nights of our 8 night trip. - which is a bummer to move so much. Understand that it would not be safe for us to drive at night but what if we hired a driver to go to MA or La Fortuna/Arenal area at night? On our last trip we arrived during the afternoon so this wasn't an issue.
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Old Mar 10th, 2010, 03:36 AM
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luv, I mentioned that in my post above; it's a good option. We had a driver pick us up at 9:00 p.m. once, and he brought blankets and pillows for us to sleep in the van while he drove.
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Old Mar 10th, 2010, 06:32 AM
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Thanks a bunch - One other question - I think we will try that option of hiring a driver and go to Sarapiqui area for a few nights then onto Manual Antonio area. We are going in April and wanted to white water raft out of Sarapiqui region but am confused from other postings if there will be enough water on Sarapiqui or it will be dry. I sent an email to Rio Tropicales but did not hear back yet. We are looking for class II or III rapids not more than that. Also what is the best place to stay for family of 5 in Sarapiqui area? Read trip advisor but looking for more imput.
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