Costa Rica Itinerary

Old Oct 28th, 2007, 08:36 PM
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Costa Rica Itinerary

My husband and I need help with an itinerary to Costa Rica. It will be our first time there and we are planning to go in February for 2 weeks. We are most interested in things which do not require the full adventure drama. Spas; hummingbird reserve; rainforest; special not to be missed places are what we are looking for. We prefer to travel ourselves and are willing to hook-up with a well-recommended tour group to some of the places. Also any recommendations for those hidden moderately priced gems. We like to vegetate too. What would be an outstanding trip. (we hate the touristy, tourist areas.)

Many thanks.

Joycers
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Old Nov 3rd, 2007, 08:28 PM
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It has been 6 days since you sent you message and still no suggestions? Okay, I'll give it a shot:

1st Day - arrive at Aeropuerto Juan Santamaría near San José.
Transfer via taxi to Hotel Fleur de Lys. http://www.hotelfleurdelys.com/
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2nd Day - Transfer via scenic-cruiser bus and canopied boat to the Caribbean village of Tortuguero.
Overnight at Mawamba Lodge
http://www.grupomawamba.com/
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3rd Day - Mawamba Lodge.
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4th Day - Return to San José.
Overnight at Hotel Fleur de Lys.
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5th Day - Transfer via Interbus - http://www.interbusonline.com/ - to Arenal Volcano area. Overnight at Arenal Observatory Lodge. www.arenal-observatory.co.cr
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6th Day - Visit the Hanging Bridges.
http://www.hangingbridges.com/
Overnight at Arenal Observatory Lodge.
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7th Day - Visit the indigenous Maleku village of Tonjibe. Overnight at Arenal Observatory Lodge.
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8th Day - Return to San José via Interbus. Overnight at Hotel Fleur de Lys.
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9th Day - Transfer via Easy Rider Shuttle - http://www.easyridecr.com/ - through the Talamanca Mountains to the valley of the Río General in Pérez Zeledón.
Overnight at Mirador Valle del General.
http://www.valledelgeneral.com/
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10th Day - Go in search of the Quetzal. Overnight at Mirador Valle del General.
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11th Day - Transfer via Easy Ride to Dominical on the Pacific coast.
Overnight at Hacienda Baru.
http://www.haciendabaru.com/
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12th Day - Overnight at Hacienda Baru.
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13th Day - Overnight at Hacienda Baru.
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14th Day - Return to San José via Easy Ride. Overnight at Hotel Fleur de Lys.
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15th Day - Fly home - Hasta luego, Costa Rica. Pura vida!
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Old Nov 3rd, 2007, 09:09 PM
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Many thanks, radarbarbarian. This is the kind of help I am looking for. I need to check out places suggested but I do so appreciate your thoughtful suggestions. Will let you know what I think.

Regards,

Joycers
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Old Nov 3rd, 2007, 09:46 PM
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Hi again Radarbarbarian,

I was just browsing the itinerary you suggested and "yeah" you did get the idea of what we are looking for--moderately priced accomodations; nature in all forms; hanging bridges; etc. What do you think of the hot springs--e.g. tabacon,etc. Any recommendations. Also is Tamarindo Beach a worthwhile consideration in your opinion?

Thanks again.

Joycers
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Old Nov 3rd, 2007, 11:40 PM
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Joycers,
If you hate the touristy, tourist areas, you will NOT like Tamarindo Beach.
In the Northern Pacific Zone, Tamarindo has become one of the most popular tourist beaches but nearby you can find prettier and less crowded beaches both north and south.
If you are looking for someplace to veg out for a few days on a quiet beach, maybe someone will chime in with their thoughts.
Playa Juinquilla comes to mind.
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Old Nov 4th, 2007, 06:47 PM
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Tabacon is an overcrowded Disneyland of a place - I think it is just horrible what has happened to that beautiful spot. But the good news is that there are two other hot springs nearby. The best one is Eco-Termales. You must book it in advance, however. You can do that through Arenal.net - and usually hotels can also book it for you. No website. No sign. Low-key but wonderful.

Skip Tamarindo. It has become a disaster. If you want a nice beach on the Nicoya Peninsula where riptides are minimal, I suggest Samara.
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Old Nov 5th, 2007, 04:56 AM
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Hello Joycers,

In Arenal, we stayed at Lost Iguana. We had a second floor corner suite -- lots of glass front looking out onto absolute beauty. I preferred the idea of a jacuzzi rather than the rock shower.... The room was great (the website pictures do no justice!). We spent alot of hours on our porch, sipping wine and watching the volcano, which was most active in the middle of the night.

I wish we had visited some of the other hotels so popular on this forum. But we were so happy with Lost Iguana why should we? We walked to hanging bridges from there, and we also walked the hotel's private trails. We never stepped foot into Tabacon, and surprise surprise, we didn't try any of the other hot springs. Next trip.

We did a few things I don't have to do again, like rapelling (waterfall canyoning). But I loved the Zip Rides....

Good luck on planning your trip.

I look forward to reading some ideas that come to you about little gems, off the beaten path. Costa Rica is very beautiful.



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