Costa Rica itinerary and lodges -- please help

Old Sep 28th, 2015, 11:40 AM
  #41  
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There's also more external programs/tours that kids and adults would enjoy available at Selva Verde.

Nearby Tirimbina offers both a tour of an organic chocolate plantation where they show how chocolate is made and let people sample the product.

Tirimbina also as a 'bat tour' where they do a short presentation on bats and their behavior, showing how the size of their ears and nose can predict what they eat, then give people a chance to see the bats they catch in their mist nets.

Bosque del Cabo, and the Osa in general, really are more adult-oriented. We saw one kid at Bosque del Cabo, and she was pouty and bored, playing with her tablet.
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Old Sep 28th, 2015, 12:06 PM
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Got it! That is why I didn't want to stay at BdC for too long. I think you are right that Selva Verde + Arenal is more appropriate. And easier!
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Old Sep 28th, 2015, 07:38 PM
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Selva Verde also has a good open air restaurant that serves wood fired pizzas. We thought it was better than the food on their buffet.
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Old Sep 28th, 2015, 07:39 PM
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volcanogirl, yes, I remember from your report! I am a bit terrified about the food at Selva Verde. But hopefully the pizza option will still be available when we go.
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Old Sep 29th, 2015, 06:28 PM
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I think they may have had pasta and Mediterranean dishes outside too. The other food isn't bad, but kind of a typical buffet. I also remember the bar having good drinks.
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Old Sep 29th, 2015, 08:44 PM
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Good. I am fine with almost any food. But the others are more picky.
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Old Oct 1st, 2015, 06:49 PM
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We went 3 years ago to CR when our kids were 5, 9 & 10. We did 4 nights in Arenal and 4 in Puerto Viejo. We honestly wished we had another night in Arenal. We stayed at Los Lagos & it was awesome. The kids loved it. There was so much to do on property that we wished we had more time to hang out at the hotel. We spent one day at the Springs doing river tubing and hanging out at the pools. The hotel is amazing but definitely very Disney like. We also did waterfall rappelling, zip lining, hanging bridges, and the waterfall hike. Hanging bridges was probably our least favorite activity as we didn't get a guide so we didn't see much. I also think everyone was cranky after our flights the day prior. One of our favorite things was a local river with a rope swing. The kids LOVED this and the locals were so nice there. It was awesome (and free). We rented a car and thought it was great to have. We could easily go into La Fortuna for our meals. We really enjoyed Puerto Viejo as well but wish we had done it first. After all the adventure in Arenal the kids thought it was a little "boring" to just go to the beach for the day. We stayed at a small hotel and really got to know the employees there and it really made us feel like we got a taste of the real Costa Rica. My daughter actually cried when we said goodbye to our waitress there, we had so many great talks with her and she was so great with our kids. I guess my point is just try to try to see some of the real CR as well as all of the adventures.

CR was my kids absolute favorite vacation & we travel a lot. I am trying to plan another trip for next year and I am once again having such a hard time trying to decide where to go! I think wherever you go you will have an amazing time and want to go back.
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Old Oct 2nd, 2015, 07:20 AM
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We had a similar experience at the Hanging Bridges. The first time we did it on our own and saw ants. We went back with a guide on another trip and saw howler monkeys and a toucan and also learned a lot about the area. A good guide can really make a difference; we used Desafio, and they were excellent.
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Old Oct 2nd, 2015, 10:11 AM
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matkat111, thank you very much for your comment! We will do Selva Verde first. I do agree that after all the adventure Selva Verde might seem boring to the kids.

I understand about Los Lagos. I think my kids will be happy there. But I am afraid DH won't be. Thus we are staying at El Silencio del Camp.

We will get a guide for the Hanging Bridges. It sounds like everybody agrees that one is needed.
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Old Oct 2nd, 2015, 10:52 AM
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One hint for the Hanging Bridges--if you can arrive a private guide to go with you early, that would probably work better than working with their own guides, who may or may not be able to go in with you before the busloads of loud tourists arrive to scare off all the wildlife. Also, the guides they employ may be more plant-oriented than bird and monkey oriented. Not that plants are unimportant, but . ..
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Old Oct 2nd, 2015, 01:17 PM
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Got it!

The main question right now is how I make it June I want to go now!
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Old Oct 7th, 2015, 03:54 PM
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Our son is 7 years old and we're taking him to Costa Rica for the third time this year. You'll love whatever you do. We're going directly to the Osa for our upcoming trip. We're splitting our time between Bosque del Cabo (wildlife hikes, waterfall rappelling, tree climbing, etc.) and Crocodile Bay in Puerto Jimenez for all the water activities. Between the two places, there's tons to do for kids. Just FYI for future trip planning. Also, the Toucan Rescue Ranch near San Jose is an awesome place to visit with kids.
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Old Oct 9th, 2015, 10:32 AM
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mad, thank you. I would love to hear more about the trip when you come back!
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Old Oct 9th, 2015, 10:37 AM
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Agree about Toucan Rescue Ranch, and it's also great for grownups.
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Old Oct 9th, 2015, 01:32 PM
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I'll be sure to write a trip report, but unfortunately it'll have to wait until March! Also, I did a ton of research about where to go with a young kid in the Osa. I was concerned about the included trips at most of the Drake Bay lodges. I could see both Corcovado and the Cano Island trips being potentially not so great with a young kid, depending on weather, currents, etc. What I like about BdC, is that the wildlife is so accessible on the property and you can do it at your own pace. Crocodile Bay advertises as a fishing lodge, but they have been so generous and accommodating to our non-fishing needs. we got a free upgrade and free spa treatment already and I didn't ask for anything! They have calmer water there, a pool, A/C and free use of paddle boards and kayaks. Hopefully it all works out!
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Old Oct 14th, 2015, 09:24 AM
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Yes, I have talked to Crocodile Bay people before. It sounds like a good option for those who don't fish and, of course, for those who fish. And I definitely understand about BdC
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Old Oct 15th, 2015, 12:09 PM
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Hi. We recently got back from 17 days in CR with kids, 11 and 12. We rented a home in Cabo Matapalo in the Osa for a week with kids. There is plenty to do there. One day we did tour with Everyday Adventures, where we hiked, ate termites, hiked to a waterfall, got a free "pedi" from some crustaceans, and kids climbed a huge strangler fig and then rapelled down. surf lessons, wildlife sightings, a massage, yoga classes, a dolphin boat ride and visit to the animal sanctuary (a highlight!), a horseback ride and waterfall rapell-and beach and pool days. there is plenty to do there with kids-and that is't including all the wildlife sightings.

we were torn bt Drake Bay and Cabo Matapalo but concerned about too much boat time for all activities.

a week was not too long in the Osa.
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Old Oct 20th, 2015, 02:17 PM
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Thank you
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