Costa Rica 5 Days in Fall

Aug 1st, 2015, 06:57 AM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 120
Costa Rica 5 Days in Fall

Hello,
Considering Cost Rica for 5 days in the fall out of PA. Unfortunately, I must be looking in the wrong places for flights as most sites state 18 hrs or more with connections? Something is off there.
We don't have a lot of time and there are so many options in CR.
The focus is on wildlife, and beautiful views, with wildlife as priority.
We are considering Manuel Antonio but appreciate any feedback on the weather in september or october, the drive from airport and itinerary suggestions since we do not have much time. Thank you!
kittygirl is offline  
Aug 1st, 2015, 05:31 PM
  #2  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 120
Update: Seems Orbitz had very few options but CheapAir we were able to determine flight times.

Now we are trying to decide between Peace Lodge for 2 nights and Issimo Suites (adults only), Parador, or other? Arenas del Mar looks lovely but perhaps more touristy then we would desire. The closer to wildlife yet with serene, luxurious accommodations (anniversary treat) and beautiful landscape the better. Seems that is everywhere.

We have determined it is rainy season in CR in sept/october but not convinced that is reason to delay. Pricing is decent.

Also seeking to learn how far the wildlife refuge is that @volcanogirl previously recommended? TIA
kittygirl is offline  
Aug 2nd, 2015, 06:30 AM
  #3  
 
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 24,065
Hi, kitty - we really like Tulemar Bungalows in Manuel Antonio, nice because they have their own beach, and close enough to walk to several restaurants. Arenas del Mar also gets consistently good reviews. I would expect a lot of rain in September/October. Here's a weather map that I like. Mouse over Manuel Antonio to see how rainy October can be.

http://costa-rica-guide.com/travel/w...-map-rainfall/

Regarding the wildlife refuge, are you talking about Proyecto Asis? That one is about five hours away in the Arenal area.

If wildlife is your priority, you should take a look at Bosque del Cabo for a future trip. It has amazing wildlife and is more off the grid than Manuel Antonio. Manuel Antonio has more in the way of luxury though. I would not go to BdC in September or October though. They really get hit by the rain that far south.
volcanogirl is offline  
Aug 2nd, 2015, 07:47 AM
  #4  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 120
Thanks @volcanogirl ! How are the views at the Bungalows compared to others? Arenas del Mar may be too busy/family oriented for us, hard to say. Do you still like the Lost Iguana? It looks incredible.
Do you have any thoughts as to Peace Lodge for 1 or 2 nights when arriving?

We also checked out Issimo Suites and Parador has some packages with transfers, but hard to tell from reviews how they compare. The refuge will be too far then, unless another airport to fly into.

Thanks for the tips on BdC, I am sure we will return as we have such little time.
kittygirl is offline  
Aug 2nd, 2015, 07:56 AM
  #5  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 120
I suppose I should have also asked if best to plan for Arenal area vs Manuel Antonio? The views in Arenal look spectacular as well.
kittygirl is offline  
Aug 2nd, 2015, 10:02 AM
  #6  
 
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 24,065
The views in the Arenal area are beautiful because of the volcano, and it's lush and green. There's tons to do there, especially adventure activities. We've stayed at Nayara, The Springs Resort and Spa, and the Lost Iguana. We'll stay at the Arenal Observatory Lodge on our next trip. We did like the Lost Iguana - it's set away from town out by the lake. There is wildlife in this area, but it's harder to spot than in Manuel Antonio.

I like the Peace Lodge - it's a really over the top property with fireplaces, jacuzzis, waterfall showers, etc. Their waterfall hike is gorgeous with five beautiful waterfalls. It's touristed though, so take a look at pics and reviews to see if it's your kind of place. We did a coffee tour from there and a tour to see Poas volcano.

Tulemar Bungalows has beautiful views. We've stayed in Lower Mot Mot, Lower Casa Panorama, and in one of their bungalows. The bungalows don't have balconies so we preferred the other ones that did. The balconies are wonderful for enjoying views and spotting wildlife. We saw lots of monkeys on property and saw sloths too. Lower Mot Mot is small, but it has a huge balcony with an outdoor kitchen; we loved it.
volcanogirl is offline  
Aug 2nd, 2015, 05:42 PM
  #7  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 120
Thanks for all the details @volcanogirl very helpful!
As it appears MA is as far as Arenal from the airport, it makes it tough. The only reason for the Peace Lodge was really to rest after a day of flying - because things do not always go smoothly. Not sure if I saw recommendations of how to break up the trip to Arenal. With wildlife and scenic views high priority it is a tough choice.

We also looked at some Airbnb properties but a bit concerned if we don't know the area we may not have the guidance we need there, although sometimes a local family is a great resource.
kittygirl is offline  
Aug 2nd, 2015, 06:30 PM
  #8  
 
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 24,065
Yes, Arenal and MA are each about three hours from the airport but in opposite directions. The Peace Lodge is a great place to rest - it's about an hour from the airport and has a cooler climate.
volcanogirl is offline  
Aug 3rd, 2015, 07:30 AM
  #9  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 120
That makes this a tough choice @volcanogirl We are in love with Nayara now, wondering if wildlife at Caño Negro will be just as good as MA, or how the weather compares for Sept/Oct. Peace Lodge is lovely but not sure we need the hassle of 2 locations for a short trip. I saw transfers are $227 hoping that is not pp.

Thanks again!
On another note, do you know how to get notice of follow ups to threads sent via email? There is no option in my settings.
kittygirl is offline  
Aug 3rd, 2015, 10:20 AM
  #10  
 
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 24,065
Yes, Nayara is a very indulgy property. Not as rustic as the Lost Iguana. There's also a new component of it called Nayara Springs. Cano Negro is great for seeing wildlife - we've seen howler monkeys, caimans, tons of water birds, even an albino howler monkey there. I like to go there during the day and then spend an evening at one of the hot springs relaxing. We've gotten some really good photos at Cano Negro. Both Desafio and Sunset Tours offer nice tours. There's good hiking at the Hanging Bridges, and we really like the waterfall hike too.

Private transfers are usually per group i.e. the cost is the same if it's two people in your group or four. If you do something like Interbus, then they usually charge on a per person basis.

I don't think Fodor's offers that function, at least I've never seen it.
volcanogirl is offline  
Aug 3rd, 2015, 11:18 AM
  #11  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 120
Would be a nice function to know if someone replied, but it is understandable why it is not an option.

As of right now we are either going to do Nayara or the Peace Lodge combo with either Parador or the Bungalows. Read a lot if great reviews on Arenas del Mar but a bit concerned about how busy it is given the popularity. Either way we are sure we will be pleased and return again.
Now the airfare - hardest part, then just hoping for the best.
kittygirl is offline  
Aug 3rd, 2015, 07:06 PM
  #12  
 
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 24,065
Tulemar Bungalows comes with a concierge. That was really fun and handy. I had never had a personal concierge before. They'll stock your frig with groceries, book tours and restaurants, etc. Makes everything really easy. Ours even drove us to an out of the way restaurant which I thought was so nice. He just asked where we were going for dinner, and when we told him, he said, "Hop in, I'll drive you." The biggest bonus though was that they have their own beach. We had been to MA before and stayed somewhere else and didn't like it nearly as much. I think because we didn't have easy beach access.
volcanogirl is offline  
Aug 4th, 2015, 02:50 PM
  #13  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 120
That sounds super! I think I may get used to that service. I like a great room and view over beach, and unique/rustic feel but still clean and new. Either way, we have great options just need to figure out the cell service to email and deal with work while gone, the joys of self-employment - NOT!
kittygirl is offline  
Aug 5th, 2015, 10:48 AM
  #14  
 
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 24,065
Yep, we like all the same stuff! My husband just signed up for an international phone plan so he can stay better connected when we travel. Wifi can be very spotty.
volcanogirl is offline  
Aug 5th, 2015, 06:10 PM
  #15  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 120
That sounds like a great idea! Last time I did that with ATT I went over though and it cost an arm and a leg, will know better this time. Spotty wifi never good, but vacationing and working is not either.
kittygirl is offline  
Related Topics
Thread
Original Poster
Forum
Replies
Last Post
katnik83
Mexico & Central America
4
Jul 14th, 2015 10:34 AM
cb24
Mexico & Central America
11
Jan 12th, 2015 04:05 PM
Jess_M
Mexico & Central America
9
Jan 9th, 2012 01:57 PM
M_creek
Mexico & Central America
13
Nov 29th, 2011 11:41 AM
susan300
Mexico & Central America
29
Nov 16th, 2011 01:46 PM

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy -

FODOR'S VIDEO

All times are GMT -8. The time now is 02:55 AM.