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Forums Other Destination advice Costa Rica travel advice

  • kelliea1 88 posts

    Hi,
    I have managed to book a 241 MAD-SJO return for next Easter and hoped fellow travellers could give me some advice as to my itinerary? It’s my first visit to CR so I’m trying best to avoid crowds at the beach resorts over Semana Santa so have left that until the end of my trip. Any advice or change of itinerary is more than welcome! Travelling with my husband and our main interests are wildlife (sloths) especially birdwatching, good food, beach life and relaxing and not too much strenuous hiking, although understand we will be doing some!
    I have 13 nights to plan as follows:
    Day 1: Arive San Jose
    Day 2 – 5: La Fortuna/Arenal – volcano, waterfall, Mistico Hanging Bridges
    Day 6 – 7: Monteverde – cloud forest, wildlife
    Day 8 – 12: Manuel Antonio – beach and wildlife
    Day 13: Either return to SJO a day early so are near to airport or can add it on to one of our other resorts.

    One question is should we visit Tamarindo or another beach resort (Tamarindo?) as well as MA after La Foruna/Arenal/Monteverde to have a relax and pamper before off on the road again?

    Thanks for your help!

    Guernsey Globetrotter 563 posts
    kelliea1 88 posts

    Great thread, thanks so much!

    Guernsey Globetrotter 563 posts

    You’re welcome.

    It is annoying that the site search is not currently working but if you want to find other info on here in future there is a sticky thread explaining how to work around this :
    https://www.headforpoints.com/forums/topic/forum-search-not-working-click-to-read-more/

    The real Swiss Tony 629 posts

    It’s been a few years since we went but the traffic between the airport and town was lousy. I don’t believe San Jose has much appeal, so you might be best staying near the airport. We stayed at the DoubleTree as it worked for the family room configuration we needed but there are other places even closer to the terminal.

    At the end, we flew from Quepos back to SJO. It was an unprotected connection so a bit risky, but the flight was fun and the airport an absolute once in a lifetime experience. When they say go to gate, you literally go to a metal gate by the side of the runway….

    kelliea1 88 posts

    Yes think we will stay out of town for our first night and get shuttle to pick us up from our hotel.

    e14 212 posts

    It’s been a few years since we went but the traffic between the airport and town was lousy. I don’t believe San Jose has much appeal, so you might be best staying near the airport. We stayed at the DoubleTree as it worked for the family room configuration we needed but there are other places even closer to the terminal.

    At the end, we flew from Quepos back to SJO. It was an unprotected connection so a bit risky, but the flight was fun and the airport an absolute once in a lifetime experience. When they say go to gate, you literally go to a metal gate by the side of the runway….

    The traffic has slightly improved as they have widened the bridges so it can be a pretty clear run into the centre / circunvalacion (ring road), but I wouldn’t actually head in as there really isn’t too much to see. I’d overnight at the Marriot Belen and then pick up a car from Alamo ….

    carousel 27 posts

    I did pretty much the same trip a couple of years ago using my 2-4-1 and avios business class but started in SJ – MA – then to Santa Teresa for 10 nights beach holiday – MV – Arenal back to SJ. I wouldnt spend anytime in SJ (personally). We went by road between all the locations but had a driver, just be mindful of the distances between places, you might think 60km or 100km wont take too long but in reality the roads are awful and not always paved so it can take hours (and hours). It’s a great trip to do, loads of activities, the wildlife is amazing just get yourself a small pair of binoculars and plenty of sunscreen – the sun is super intense so be careful

    kelliea1 88 posts

    Thanks for the info @carousel. Any hotels you would recommend please?

    Cat 95 posts

    Hey, not sure if it’s too late, but if your main interest is wildlife I strongly recommend Sirena wildlife station in the Corcovado NP, for as many nights as you can afford it.

    It was absolutely incredible!

    The thread above is mine, BTW, glad you found it useful!

    David D 35 posts

    @kelliea1 – how are you plans coming along? Booked anything exciting?

    kelliea1 88 posts

    All hotels booked and shuttles planned. Lots still to do!

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