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1st time to CR, can't decide where to start, end, or just stay put

1st time to CR, can't decide where to start, end, or just stay put

Old Apr 29th, 2004, 09:43 PM
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1st time to CR, can't decide where to start, end, or just stay put

Hey fodorites,

I'm at a loss where to start... 2 couples who love adventure, yet enjoy staying put in one spot and venturing out from there. We were thinking of lodging near Quepos, and venturing out from there.

Everything I'm reading of CR suggests multi destinations for lodging, seeing as much as poss w/in the time avail. We have 7-10 days, and we enjoy oceanfront or beachfront properties... not too pricy, and not resort. We especially like condos for the ease of cooking meals... our "men" are great "chefs".

Our DH's are bound for fishing as much as poss, and the ladies enjoy the beach, relaxation and exploration.

What to do? Where to go? Any suggestions?

We have no agenda, YET! AND we really need some direction. Please help.
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Old Apr 30th, 2004, 07:58 AM
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For 7 to 10 days, I'd like to suggest possibly two locations. La Fortuna (Arenal Volcano) for a couple nights, and Manuel Antonio for 'beach time'. The reason I suggest Manuel Antonio is because there is SO much to do in the area, including fishing. Villas Nicolas is nice, with kitchens and moderate in price.
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Old Apr 30th, 2004, 08:36 AM
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Hi Ally,

Thanks for the recommendation... I checked out the website for Villas Nicolas, they look perfect for us. I also have looked at Makanda by the Sea, which is a little pricier than Villas, but very nice.

Any thoughts on lodging for La Fortuna...

Also, your pers fav "not to miss" activities?

Thanks so much.
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Old Apr 30th, 2004, 12:00 PM
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Where to fish depends on what time of year you are going.

I've found that August -November, the Northwest coast is the best (try Hotel El Velero in Playa Hermosa, or for condos try Tamarindo Vista Villas in Tamarindo).

Quepos/Manuel Antonio area is great for fishing between December and April.

As for the Arenal area, I'd stay either at Montana de Fuego or Arenal Paraiso; they are in an area where you have the opportunity to see the volcano from your room, and are reasonably priced.

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Old Apr 30th, 2004, 02:47 PM
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I'll second deadelvis' recommendation for El Velero. Every time we visit we get stuck for a couple of extra days because we just can't stand leaving. They are a little tough to track down on google so here's the hotel's URL
http://www.costaricahotel.net/
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Old Apr 30th, 2004, 03:36 PM
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Thanks so much.

We will be traveling in late March, early April, so should we forgo the NW coast and concentrate on MA area and Arenal Volcano?

The guys will want to be fishing as much as possible... what will their options be?

We really have no agenda planned yet and would like to plan around the fishing opportunities that will be available that time of year. These boys REALLY love to fish, esp. saltwater.

Thanks again.
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Old May 1st, 2004, 06:48 PM
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Makai1
Although I love the NW coast area, it would be difficult to go wrong with an Arenal/Manuel Antonio combo-especially during the months you are talking. Haven't done fishing at Quepos, but we have read a lot about it, and it sounds like a great place for fishing action. Jimmy Buffet writes about it in some detail in his "A Pirate Looks at 50" book.
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Old May 4th, 2004, 04:45 PM
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We were in CR last March/April and we popped around quite a bit. We loved the La Fortuna area but found our choice of accomodation not great because it was too far from the volcano. We also liked Manuel Antonio. We stayed at the Mariposa Hotel and really liked it there. It was not too big and in a beautiful spot. We also spent a couple of days in San Jose and Jaco Beach and also at Tamarindo Beach. We enjoyed it all but Manuel Antonio and Arenal were definite high spots.
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Old May 5th, 2004, 03:06 PM
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For 10 days, I agree with previous posts ... Arenal then Manuel Antonio. I assume from your post that fishing is the main reason for the guys to visit CR (and the fishing is GREAT out of Quepos, they won't be disappointed!) Villas Nicholas is a great place if you need kitchen facilities but it is not located on the waterfront/beachfront, as in you walk out your door and your toes are in the sand. Makanda is exceptional if you can swing the price ... one of the very best in the area. IMHO, the best accommodation in Manuel Antonio are "on the mountain" with the exceptional views of the Pacific not on the direct beachfront. For daytime activities for the ladies, beach horseback riding, guided tour thru the Manuel Antonio Parque, a day of relaxation at the many spas the area has to offer, whitewater rafting, canopy tour (zipline), sunning at the beach. Hope this is some assistance. Drop a line if you need further help.

Lisa in Manuel Antonio
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Old May 5th, 2004, 03:35 PM
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Thanks much for your input.

Arenal & Manuel Antonio look like a great 1st time itinerary. We may be moving the trip up to Jan or Feb instead of March/April... would that effect the fishing in MA??

For some reason Tamarindo perks my interest, but it seems like it would be much traveling in such a short amount of time.

Lisa, thanks for the activity ideas... I agree about the ocean views in Manuel Antonio from what I'm seeing in lodging online. I'm looking forward to showing our options to everyone @ our upcoming "team meeting". Makanda looks wonderful.

Thanks again!

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Old May 5th, 2004, 03:50 PM
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In spite of the fact that it has gotten very touristy in the last few years and has lost its fishing village charm (from what I understand), Tamarindo is still one of my favorite places. You could always do it on another trip, but also, it wouldn't be out of the question to hop from Arenal to Tamarindo (4 hours), then on to MA. One of the reasons this is a nice area is due to the fact that you can drive short distances in either direction and see interesting places. I like the areas north of Tamarindo up toward (and including)Playa Flamingo, Sugar Beach, etc. The town itself has a lot of bars, restaurants, always action (both legal and illegal!), neat shops, etc. Worth a visit--sometime!
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Old May 5th, 2004, 04:11 PM
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Thanks Shillmac,

What's are the option for flying from Tamarindo to Quepos?

Chances are that we will rent a vehicle for travel from San Jose, as we like the flexibility that having a car offers. Do the rental agencies allow pick up and drop off in different areas?

I'm really clueless about the logistics in Costa Rica.

Again, thanks for your insight.

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Old May 5th, 2004, 07:07 PM
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Yes, you can drop off in different areas (costs a little more), but since we don't travel by air (or haven't yet) in CR, I don't know the answer to your question. Check out the Sansa or Nature Air websites. You should find what you are looking for there. Safe travels!
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Old May 6th, 2004, 10:53 AM
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Sansa & NatureAir don't fly from Tamarindo to Quepos directly. You'll need to fly back to SJ, then fly to Quepos. Another option is to charter a plane between the two areas but that will run you some $$$! FYI, fishing is great in January/February. Just some info for your "team meeting"....tell our guys that our friend from the UK was here in January and raised 11 sails in one day! Fantastic!

Lisa in Manuel Antonio
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Old May 6th, 2004, 10:59 AM
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Oops ... I mean tell YOUR guys that our friend ....

If you're in M.A. for a week, our neighbor rents out his house by the week. Three bedroom/3 bath, full kitchen, private pool. Drop a line if you'd like further info.

Lisa (again!)
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Old May 7th, 2004, 03:19 PM
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Hi Lisa!

Thanks a million... I think we might scratch the Tamarindo option and save it for a fishing trip another time during the autumn months. It really might be too much "jockeying" around.

Looks like it will be Manuel Antonio for the bulk of our time, and I shared w/ our guys what you said about the 11 sails... woooo hooooo 8-) they're ready!

We have also been condering a private home... I'm curious if it's your neighbor... geminis del pacifico?? It looks like this might work out for us... does your neighbor have a website to brouse?

Thanks again!! ><

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Old May 14th, 2004, 07:50 AM
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Makai1: I've been stateside for the past seven days and had one heck of a time finding this post again ... it's way down on the list so sorry for the delay in getting back with you. So I don't "lose you" again, please email me directly and I'll fill you in on the rental situation.

Lisa in Manuel Antonio
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