visit 2 areas in 1 week???

Old Jun 18th, 2014, 10:52 AM
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visit 2 areas in 1 week???

Taking kids 10 & 13 to CR in February. 1st time, they asked to see beach for kayaking, zip lines, waterfalls, horseback riding.

Looked at the Manuel Antonio area which seems to have all of these activities nearby.

Many recommend visiting 2 areas like Arenal, along with the beach area. The driving seems too much for 1 week there. Is there something I'm missing??
bjcp1123 is offline  
Old Jun 18th, 2014, 01:12 PM
Join Date: May 2007
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With a week, I would go to both Manuel Antonio and Arenal; it's about four and half hours or so between the two of them, and each is about 3 hours from SJO but in opposite directions. If you're beach people, you could spend the entire time in Manuel Antonio and be happy, but since Costa Rica is so diverse, it's nice to see two different areas.
volcanogirl is offline  
Old Jun 19th, 2014, 04:49 AM
Join Date: Jan 2013
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Hi there!

Although a week is not very long, it's certainly long enough to comfortably fit in two different areas, and I'd encourage you to do so. One of the great things about Costa Rica is its diversity of landscapes and ecosystems, so I think it would be a shame to spend all the time in one place. Arenal would be a great option to fit with the beach, there's a huge range of activities on offer here, including riding, hiking, ziplines, waterfalls, hanging bridges and many more. Monteverde in the cloudforest could be another good choice for a very interesting contrast, again there are many activities available.

For driving, do remember that distances aren't great, and roads are improving. Having a car also gives you great flexibility to explore a little further afield than is other wise the case. Depending on exactly where you're going, you could look to fly into Liberia rather than San Jose, which offers quick access to several worthwhile areas.

In terms of the beach, to an extent this depends what you're after, but one thing I would flag up is that Manuel Antonio is busy - very busy in fact in February. You might want to consider somewhere further north - there's a lovely stretch on the Nicoya Peninsula, around Nosara and Samara, which has many laidback beaches, fewer crowds, and still loads of activities on offer. Flying into Liberia and combining somewhere here with Arenal/Monteverde would make for a lovely combination.

Hope that helps!

PuraAventura is offline  
Old Jun 19th, 2014, 08:13 AM
Join Date: May 2007
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If you do go to Manuel Antonio, we loved staying at Tulemar Bungalows. They have their own beach with free kayaking and boogie boarding. Lots of very good restaurants you can walk to in the area as well.
volcanogirl is offline  
Old Jun 23rd, 2014, 08:46 PM
Join Date: May 2011
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agree with Volcanogirl, Manuel Antonio with Arenal is a good combo to start with. The first time I ever came to Costa Rica, before I moved here, I did the exact same. Even though both areas are a bit touristy, and I've lived here more years than I can count, I still visit both a few times a year.
incabod is offline  
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