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Comments/suggestions on a 9 day - 8 night itinerary

Walnut Creek, CA
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Comments/suggestions on a 9 day - 8 night itinerary

We will be going to Costa Rica from July 9 to July 17 for our honeymoon. We want some adventure/sight seeing with a little relaxation near the end. Here is what I came up with:

July 9 - MIA to SJO - Flight arrives at 10:50 AM; will take private driver to Peace Lodge, Heredia. Take the day to see waterfalls, maybe frog tour in the evening, and relax at night.

July 10 & 11 - Depart Peace Lodge in early AM. Drive to La Fortuna, stay at El Silencio Del Campo. Visit Tabacon hot springs, Arenal volcano national park.

July 12 & 13 - Depart El Silencio in early AM, go to Monteverde Cloud Forest Lodge. Canopy tour, hiking.

July 14,15,16 - Depart for Manuel Antonio leisurely. Stay at La Posada. Anyone recommend any good activities here beside relax on beach??

July 17 - Depart for San Jose in early AM, visit sites in San Jose, evening flight back to MIA. Any recommendations for sights/activities in San Jose.

P.S. We are vegetarian, any special places to eat?

Any comments or suggestions will be helpful. Thank you all in advance!!!

I would like to send praise to all the people that make this site possible; I could not have planned so much without a central place to find so much information from an unbiased source (real people)!!!!

Northern California
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1. Re: Comments/suggestions on a 9 day - 8 night itinerary

I love Monteverde, but I think you should skip it. It is a long trip to get there and out of there, you don't have enough days to enjoy it. I'm assuming since it is a honeymoon you can't skip the hot springs. Why don't you add a day at Arenal instead. You can do the canopy tour there, or a Cano Negro boat trip, and visit yet another hot springs!

Washington DC...
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for St. Thomas
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2. Re: Comments/suggestions on a 9 day - 8 night itinerary

This was our 9 day trip:

Arrived San Jose in the early evening on a Saturday. Spent the night in Heredia at La Condesa -- lovely setting on the mountain overlooking the city.

Next day, Sunday, we drove to Sarapiqui and stayed at the SarapiquiS Centro Neotropicos on the Sarapiqui River beside the Tirimbina rainforest preserve. The buildings are round with tall cone-shaped thatched roofs called palenques with small porches all around. Lovely gardens, nice walks across a walking bridge into the rainforest. Near Sarapiqui we also did a river tour to see animals -- lots of monkeys, birds, otter, sloths...there is also good white water rafting on the Sarapiqui. We also did the rainforest tram ride here.

Tuesday, we drove to Arenal and spent one night at the Tabacon Lodge...lovely setting at the foot of the volcano. In La Fortuna we hiked downhill (and then a grueling hike back up, but worth it) to a waterfall. Food at the lodge restaurant is excellent.

Wednesday we went to Bosque de Paz for lunch...non paved roads, but gorgeous scenery in the cloud forest. A private reserve where the kids in our group planted alder trees. We saw zillions of hummingbirds and had a wonderful meal. Drove back to San Jose and spent the night at La Condesa.

Thursday we took a bus to Tortuguero...lovely drive across the mountains, through banana fields, stopping for a great lunch, and then catching a boat at the end of the road near Limon. (There are no roads to Tortuguero). Spent two days exploring the canals and the Tortuguero River and saw many animals -- monkeys, sloths, birds of all kinds, crocodile, iguanas, etc. Stayed at Mwamba Lodge, small tin-roofed cabinas in the rainforest on a sand spit between the Tortuguero River and the Caribbean. Left Tortuguero on Saturday on a small plane (only a landing strip by the beach; no airport) and got a bird's eye view of the rainforest. Awesome.

Saturday we spent the afternoon and night near San Jose at La Bougainvillea, an absolutely gorgeous property with incredible gardens, lovely pool, and great restaurant.

CR is such a lovely country...I only give you our itinerary so you might want to check out some of these places...we had a marvelous time. One of the best trips of all time. We did, however, arrange everything with a tour company. The local group was Horizontes. They did a great job.

Owen Sound, Canada
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3. Re: Comments/suggestions on a 9 day - 8 night itinerary

In my opinion you have too much driving. Suggest eliminating Monteverde and adding a day in Arenal and maybe one in MA .


costa rica
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4. Re: Comments/suggestions on a 9 day - 8 night itinerary

Looks good to me:)

Maybe, 1 less day at Peace Lodge seeing the falls etc is 1 day max.

but the Peace Lodge is lovely and youre on honeymoon so im sure you can find 'something' to do with the extra day:)

Id spend 3 nights in La Fortuna personally, lot to see and do:


visit the hot springs, see the waterfall, go on a day trip to Cano Negro,

Not a LOT to do in MA apart from the beach. But of course theres the National Park inside the park are the best beaches:


Im not a vegeterian but in Monteverde theres a good veg restaurant called Flor de Vida:


In San Jose a must see is the National Theater in the center of town:


Have a coofee there or if theres somthing going on go to the theter.

unfortunately their website is only in Spanish.

Dallas, TX
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5. Re: Comments/suggestions on a 9 day - 8 night itinerary

I agree with skipping Monteverde. We only went to 3 different places and we got tired of being on the road and we had a great private driver. We just got back yesterday and we were in MA for 3 nights, La Fortuna for 2 nights and Peace Lodge for 2 nights. When we go back we are going to Hotel Punta Islita and Peace Lodge only. We love Peace Lodge! I can't imagine just staying 1 night. That is sad. You can go on a nice river raft trip there and a vocano tour and the grounds take a day and 1/2 to really take everything in! We did not have a great experience in La Fortuna but we chose the wrong place to stay, so that influenced our opionion. The Tabacon Hot springs are great but can be extremely crowded, I would recommend going in the evening. It is more romantic and less crowded. This trip was for our 10 year anniversary and it was so wonderful. I'm sure you will have a wonderful time.

Sarasota, Florida
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6. Re: Comments/suggestions on a 9 day - 8 night itinerary

Hi Moglipatel!

As far as your question regarding things to do in MA, depends on how adventurous you are. We did an ATV tour with Los Tucanes Del Ranchos (spelling?). I don't consider myself a huge risk taker and I was scared at first but it was an AMAZING tour. They took us up into the mountains and we saw so much nature yet we got our adrenaline going! It was great.

Otherwise, definitely go hike in the park, if you are into nature. We didn't hire a guide and we saw so many animals! The only thing we missed out on by not hiring a guide was a telescope! We hiked for hours, it was so much fun.

You will LOVE MA. La Posada is in a prime spot too, right outside of MA park!

Have fun!

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7. Re: Comments/suggestions on a 9 day - 8 night itinerary

You will have a wonderful time in Costa Rica and should not have any problems eating vegetarian. When we were in MA we also stayed at Costa Verde but we ate all of our meals at mono azul. I think they have a menu on their website. They were very veggie friendly and the food was very good. Make sure to stop roadside for some great deals on fruits for snacks.

constantly moving
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8. Re: Comments/suggestions on a 9 day - 8 night itinerary

I agree with all the posters who suggest skipping Monteverde.

For beautiful beaches you might want to consider The Motezuma-Mal Pais area or Puert Viejo south.

Winston-Salem, NC
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9. Re: Comments/suggestions on a 9 day - 8 night itinerary

Do you mind sharing how much your flight cost? I see that your flying from Miami, but I'm just trying to get an idea before we book ours...we're a little behind, we're going for 9 days on honeymoon too about 2 weeks before. Congratulations!

10. Re: Comments/suggestions on a 9 day - 8 night itinerary

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