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laracooper Jan 29th, 2004 01:19 PM

Hotels in CR
I am going to Costa Rica in late March and would like some advice:

1. Hotel Alta - Highly recommended by Fodors and Frommers so I booked it and now read bad reviews. Any one else stay there?
2.Restaurants in San Jose - Any recomendations around Hotel Alta?
3. Best day trips from San Jose - Any advice?
4. Monteverde - Can you do the cloud forest on a three hour day trip?

Percy Jan 29th, 2004 01:41 PM

I will answer what I can;

Best Tripyou can do from San Jose:
Arenal and Tabacon Hot Springs. This is an all day trip.
or Turu Ba Ri near Orortina
To Monteverde Cloud Forest in 3 hours..
Not a chance.

laracooper Jan 29th, 2004 01:50 PM

We are spening one day in San Jose and then going to Arenal (two days). I was thinking that we could try to get to the cloud forest on the way to the beach, in the afternoon, but I read that it is hard to get through without advance reservations or being part of a hotel tour. Do you have any idea?

costaricafinca Jan 29th, 2004 02:04 PM

Dear laracooper,
1. I stayed in Hotel Alta a couple of years ago - too fancy for my taste, and nothing really special about it. To tell you the truth, I don't remember much... It is not located in the city, so no restaurant in San Jose is really close. There are restaurants in Escazu, a few minutes from the hotel.
2. There are so many day trips from San Jose... I recommend Turuabri ( as well, where you can experience a lot of Costa Rica's famous attractions (canopy tour, aerial tram, butterfly farm, tico food and more).
3. It takes at least 3 hours to get to Monteverde (no matter where you are coming from), so, not a good idea as a day trip....
Let me know if you need any more information, you can write my email directly.
Pura Vida,
Neta Talmor

Suzie2 Jan 29th, 2004 04:19 PM

Monteverde is in no way a day trip=it takes 3-4hrs just to get there up a very difficult mountain road on some routes.
Many people have enjoyed the 11hr highlight tour of Costa Rica (myself included-it is the one and only tour I have taken in 12 years of travel down there).
Don't know where you got the info that you have to be part of a hotel tour to go into Monteverde. You do have to buy a ticket and they do limit the amount of people at a time but you don't have to be part of a "tour".

shillmac Jan 31st, 2004 02:50 PM

The Highlights of Costa Rica tour is definintely worth your time and money! You will experience a lot of different things. Totally different from the Arenal/Tabacon tour. . .you may want to do both!

takemethere Feb 1st, 2004 02:43 PM

We stayed at the Hotel Alta last march and thought it was good. It has a great resturant and a nice pool. The staff were very friendly and the balconies gave great views of the valley.

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