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txlonghrn Jan 4th, 2007 07:10 PM

Costa Rica, Belize, or Puerto Rico for recent college grads?
Hey all,

My friend and I are recent college grads and looking to fit in a trip to either Costa Rica, Belize, or Puerto Rico for about a week-10ish days, in between our friends' weddings.

Which place would you suggest we go to? We've heard WONDERFUL things about both Costa Rica and Belize, but the airfare to Puerto Rico is $300 less. If the other two places are by far better, though, we are willing to spend a little more. We won't need to scrape by everyday, but we're not rich by any means, so we can't spend too much.

Thanks for your insight and help!!!

shillmac Jan 4th, 2007 09:37 PM

Man, it's tough giving advice to a txlonghrn, particularly when you're a Sooner grad! :)

I can't advise you on Belize--sounds very interesting, but haven't been there.

We've spent a lot of time in Costa Rica and can't imagine a time when I won't want to go back there. 3 months away and it starts tugging at me again! Fabulous place--and can be done for a LOT less $$ than most people spend. It will cost you more than Puerto Rico, but that's because there's a hundred times more to see and do!

Since our daughter has been in Puerto Rico the past 18 months, we have also visited there numerous times and have seen most of the island, except for a few areas in the western interior. There's just no comparison. There are some interesting areas, but it doesn't even come close to the grandeur of Costa Rica.

Puerto Rico has El Yunque (rainforest, they call it), but there are no birds, not much wildlife to speak of, although you do hear a few coqui frogs every now and then! Costa Rica gives you rainforest all over the place, monkeys everywhere, the most beautiful birds imaginable, creatures crossing your path at every turn--agoutis, coatamundis, anteaters, deer, sloths, you name it.

And then you have active volcanoes, exhilirating white water, those ever popular ziplines, hiking, waterfalls all over the place, beaches and beach towns, colonial towns where not much English is spoken, the southern Caribbean with its Rasta influence, surf meccas like Malpais, Witch's Rock in the north, Tamarindo, Puerto Viejo (Puerto Rico has Rincon, though!).

It's a virtual paradise! But doing those things tends to add up, sure. The good thing is that you guys can stay in some budget, yet clean, accomodations--they're everywhere.

Good luck whatever you choose and have fun. . .

Boomer Sooner! :)

txlonghrn Jan 4th, 2007 10:02 PM

Haha...I can understand the trepidation in responding to my post...thanks for your good sportsmanship :).

Quite an amazing game y'all just played, too. Though it didn't come out y'alls way, a valiant effort and one that will be remembered for a while...

What an incredible response. Thank you for taking the time to give such an exhaustive response. That really confirms our leaning towards Costa Rica, I think. It just seems so beautiful, and you're right about it being more expensive because it just doesn't compare.

I might contact you again, if you don't mind a Longhorn doing that :), and ask for your advice on the area. It seems so wonderful. My best friend are I (both women, so we're interested in safety stuff as well) are very excited!

Many thanks, again.

shillmac Jan 5th, 2007 05:01 AM

Hey--we may be making history here! :)

I'd be happy for you to contact me. You haven't even seen "exhaustive" until you've gotten me REALLY started on Costa Rica! :)

e-mail if you'd like:

[email protected]

shillmac Jan 5th, 2007 05:04 AM

And about the bowl game--what a night! Boise State definitely deserved the win. They just wouldn't quit, would they? And we waited too late to show up. My husband and son were there, and they said the final excitement was worth the price of the whole trip, although they would have loved the win.

I teach in Texas (retired Oklahoma) so have a LITTLE allegiance across the Red River. Just a little. My students like to give me a hard time and are always wearing these burnt oranges sweatshirts and t-shirts to class. Quite distracting . . . ;)

rickandpat Jan 5th, 2007 05:42 AM

My one trip to PR was a stopover, so no help there. But I've been to both CR and Belize twice. Shillmac gives good advice on CR, it's fantastic. Belize is also surf and turf - go to the jungle for all kinds of caving, Mayan ruins,kayaking or canoeing, and hiking. (You'll see more wildlife in Costa Rica though.) Then to the islands or coast for watersports and snorkeling (the latter best done from an island). If you like adventure, my husband and I loved Belize Adventure Week with Slickrock (though on the island portion there's no electricity or flush toilets - worth it though!)

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