Costa Rica - Monteverde or Osa or both?

Old Mar 18th, 2005, 07:23 AM
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Costa Rica - Monteverde or Osa or both?

We are going to Costa Rica at the end of June this year. Our itinerary is as follows

Day 1 - Reach San Jose drive to Arenal (Lost Iguana Lodge)
Day 2 - Arenal (Lost Iguana Lodge)
Day 3 - Drive to Monteverde (Monteverde Lodge)
Day 4 - Monteverde (Monteverde Lodge)
Day 5 - Back to San Jose (Xandari)
Day 6 - Osa (Bosque del Cabo)
Day 7 - Osa
Day 8 - Osa
Day 9 - Islita (Hotel Punta Islita)
Day 10 - Islita
Day 11- Islita
Day 12 - Fly back home

We were wondering if Monteverde and Osa were too similar to visit...we love critters and birds but is there something more distinctive in Costa Rica that you enjoyed and would recommend instead? Also, any feedback on itinerary and choice of hotel greatly appreciated. Thank you!
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Old Mar 18th, 2005, 07:49 AM
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I have not been to Monteverde, butI have been to another cloud forest in Costa Rica. I have also been to Osa. Rest assured, the two areas are NOTHING alike!

My only question would be if you've allowed enough time in Arenal and Montervere, given the long drive times. Are you flying to Osa?

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Old Mar 18th, 2005, 07:58 AM
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Molly - thanks so much!! Yes, we are flying to Osa around 10.30am on Day 6.

We figured that we would spend a whole day each at Arenal and Monteverde -- do you recommend cutting one of them out?

The other decision was to see if we could fit in Poas Volcano and La Paz falls into this itinerary. Maybe driving back from Monteverde on Day 5?
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Old Mar 18th, 2005, 08:39 AM
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I have visited Monteverde, Arenal and Osa. The two areas of Monteverde and Osa are completely different. Monteverde is a cloud forest where you can explore from the canopy or on the ground. It is cool, wet and windy. The Osa Peninsula is warm and coastal offering trail hiking, waterfalls and beaches...

I would suggest skipping Arenal. You will chance spending half a day driving to Arenal and possibly not even seeing the Volcano. When we were there, we stayed at the base and could not see anything but clouds.

My favorite was Osa because of the abundance of wild life. If you click on my name, you can read my trip report.
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Old Mar 18th, 2005, 11:31 AM
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Nicci

I couldn't find your trip report -- could you email it to me at [email protected]. Would you recommend Poas Volcano over Arenal? I love waterfalls as well. Thanks!
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Old Mar 18th, 2005, 02:42 PM
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clove, I can relate to your itinerary dilemma; I went through it last year, and finally decided upon Tortuguero, Arenal, the Cerro de la Muerte cloud forest, and Osa. We were there for three weeks. I aso posted a trip report, way back. I have no idea how to e-mail it to you, or I'd be happy to!

My favorite area was also Osa. If I was FORCED to cut one area of the above itinerary, wonderful as it was, it would have been Toruguero, just because the other areas were even more unique, and offered more opportunity {for us} to see wildlife.
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Old Mar 20th, 2005, 10:57 AM
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Molly2 : It seems I have similar itinerary as your in mind for my vacation int he end of this April.We will go for 3 weeks and I am thinking about doing (in no particular order) Monteverde, MA, Osa. Can you please email me your itinerary, too. [email protected] Any advice on Osa is highly appreciated. We like to be independent so I am thinking we should rent a car for the whole time. Does it make sence? Once inn Osa- can we combine Drake Bay and corcovado?
Iam getting a bit anxious to plan all this and any advice is highly appreciated.
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Old Mar 20th, 2005, 05:50 PM
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boleslav, we did not go to either Monteverde or Manual Antonio, so the only area of your itinerary I can comment on is Osa.

We hired a driver to take us to Sierpe, where we caught a boat to our small lodge near Drake Bay. While it was an interesting trip,it was also long and hot. Had we to do it over, we would have flown.

Yes, you can easily take a guided daytrip into the more heavily visited portion of Corcovado from Drake Bay. It's a worthwhile excursion, though we saw as much wildlife near our lodge. Do you know where you're staying yet?
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Old Mar 21st, 2005, 10:56 AM
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Molly 2, - No i do not know wehre we are stayin yet. Am pleying with an idea to stay at Corcovado tent camp.
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Old Mar 21st, 2005, 01:12 PM
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Boleslav,be aware that there are two tent camps with similar names; confusing, I think. The one closest to Drake Bay isn't the highly recommended one run by Costa Rica Expeditions. We walked by the one near Drake Bay as it was right down the beach from our lodge; while it looked fine as a camping option, for approx. the same money, we preferred our cabin.
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Old Mar 22nd, 2005, 07:10 AM
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Molly 2- did you visit the San Pedrito ranger station from the Drake Bay side? If so is there any place cheaper to stay for 1-2 nights and hike to Corcovado from this side, too.
I know that on the east side- Carate side, there are two tent camps one is Corcovado tent camp and the other La luna (or something like that) Which one is the one you did not like. If you preferred cabin - where did you stay, I am sure you must have snwered the same question before, already
Thank you
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Old Mar 22nd, 2005, 08:59 AM
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If memory serves, we did enter Corcovado from the San Pedrillo station. We did this as a guided daytrip from our lodge and got there by boat. The entrance and trails were rather crowded. I don't know if there is lodging that would get you close enough to logically hike to this entrance - good question!

The tent camp I was talking about isn't either of the two near Carate. The camp I was referring to is close to Drake Bay and a number of lodges. It wasn't that I didn't like it, it just seemed rather expensive compared what you get at the nearby accommodations. We stayed at Cabinas Las Caletas. The price was $60 per person, iincluding meals. I have also heard good things about Punta Mareco Lodge, which shares a forest reserve with Marenco Beach and Rainforest Lodge and is close to the Rio Claro.

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