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Obsessed with Osa

Atlanta
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317 posts
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Obsessed with Osa

We just reserved some FF mile tickets for May 2008. We'll have nine nights, but the first must be spent in SJO due to a late arriving flight (8:45pm).

I looked at doing this trip last year but finances nixed the idea. Now, we're on, and I can't wait. Originally I planned to do Arenal/Monteverde/Manuel Antonio, but hearing cries of MA being "touristy" caused me to look elsewhere for a coastal destination.

After looking at Tamarindo, Dominical, and Tortuguero, I explored Osa. I think I'm obsessed. I've spent the last two hours researching Osa and it looks perfect for us. Viewing wildlife in its native habitat is a passion of mine and it appears Osa is rich in this area. Has anyone been there? Is it as wonderful as it appears?

As of now, tentative plan is 1 night SJO, 4 nights Osa, 4 nights Arenal/Monteverde. Thoughts?

St. Petersburg...
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1. Re: Obsessed with Osa

Many posts here about the Osa, it's a very popular destination though luckily never crowded or overdeveloped like MA. If you're looking for wildlife and a wonderful place to stay your best bet is Bosque del Cabo. I would definitely spend 4 nights in the area (5 if you can swing it) and 3 or 4 nights in either Arenal or Monteverde (but not both).

You can read the reviews here on Bosque, it always gets rave reviews, it's a very special place.

Atlanta
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317 posts
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2. Re: Obsessed with Osa

Thanks Midori. I've been read reviews, and have a few questions:

1. Is it going to be ungodly hot in May? Keep in mind that I live in Atlanta, so I'm familiar with crushing humidity.

2. Do you know anything about the Osa wildlife sanctuary? Are the folks at BdC helpful when it comes to organizing off site tours? That's probably the only one we'd do.

San Jose, Costa Rica
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3. Re: Obsessed with Osa

Hi from paradise!!

Maybe some good old addr. to see the different alternatives...

Iguana Lodge and Iguana s Pearl of the Osa..

info@iguanalodge.com

Bosque del Cabo...nice choice..about $165.00 p/person...incl meals

www.bosquedelcabo.com

e-mail...boscabo@racsa.co.cr

La Leona Eco-Lodge (506) 735-5705 laleona.com

Located next to the park...about $60.00 per person...inc/meals...

Lapa Rios....(506) 735-5130 laparios.com

Luna Lodge...(506) 380-5036 lunalodge.com about $100.00 p/p includes meals... and some of the tents if availavble $ 75.00 inc/meals

Beach house..Matapalo...(506) 353-8619 www.psychotours.com

About $100.00 per night..good for 4 people!!

I paid some of my College fees ...guiding tours in that area...I am talking about 30 years ago...or maybe less...any way...since those days I am like you now...obsessed with the area!!

We use to drive to Puerto Jimenez...spend that night there and next day take the Jeeps and drive in the "terrible" bumpy road to Carate...about 45 Km...at 5 km p/hour...now I sound like some people from Ohio that I know!!

Then walk with all the gear to the parkers ranger station about one hour from there..."La Leona parkers Ranger"

And then into the park...let me tell...that was, is and will be paradise...thank God for our ancestors that thought about the National Parks...I can not imaging that land in hands of fat, money hungry developers...

Next week I am going to be there with some friends from Illinois..not guiding...this time some body will do the talking...I will do the driving ...

R.A Luis

Just buckle up and enjoy the ride in paradise

St. Petersburg...
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4. Re: Obsessed with Osa

Alw - All my trips to BDC were in May and I love it then. Sometimes rains at night but only once ot twice during the day (at least on my trips!). It's hot yes, but I found it less so than here in FL - the location of BDC is a big plus as it is on a cliff so it gets really great breezes, especially at night.

I finally got to the Sanctuary this past May, though I went before I got to BDC as it was easier (I was on the Golfito side first). I really loved the refuge and fell in love with lulu the howler monkey. BDC is great for setting up trips like that. My best advice is to wait til you get there to decide when to go. At the bar & dinner everyone sits around and talks and tells what their plans are for the next day. You can usually find another couple or more that are planning to do the same trips, therefore cutting your transport costs (to PJ and then the boat ride).

You emailed me (from another board) for my pics so I will send those shortly and you can see Bosque and the refuge etc for yourself. Have fun planning....the Osa is unbeatable imho.

Seattle, Washington
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5. Re: Obsessed with Osa

YES, it is as wonderful as it appears. And if being surrounded (if not a little isolated) by wonderful hiking trails, wildlife and nature, it's the place to go! Bosque del Cabo is truly as good as everyone raves. Wildlife Sanctuary is soooo wonderful. I have great pics of my daughter in one with a monkey up under her rain poncho, and other grabbing her shoulder. Lulu the howler will reach up to you for picking up. There are other animals and the story behind what they do there is inspiring. I would suggest you meet people at

BDC at the family style dinner and bar area to see who will join you for the boat ride over to help save costs. The boat ride is the most expensive part. Plus, we combined another tour on the same day and saved costs there as well. Otherwise, we hiked the grounds on our own and did a few of the guided walks, and horseback riding. Things we saw daily, many times in the trees next to our cabina, 4 species of monkeys, toucans, mcaws, parrots, coati's and other various birds/animals. Also, don't feel like you need a deluxe cabina if you want to save money. The main diff is that the standard have 2 double beds, the deluxe have a king, some with loft. The are all on the bluff with ocean views (some a little better than others). If you go standard, I think Pizote is a good one. The food is 5* and the bartender is the best! We're going back next April. We were there this year end of May/beg of June and it was hot, but not unbearable (and I'm from Seattle, so I'm a wimp). It's humid, but that's what the outdoor showers are for! Nature Air has a flight from Quepos to Puerto Jimenez, and then BDC will pick you up at the airstrip.

Hope this helps!

Seattle, Washington
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6. Re: Obsessed with Osa

I should have read Midori's post first. I said pretty much the same thing in different words! Oh well. I also have pic's posted, e-mail me if you want to take a look.

St. Petersburg...
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7. Re: Obsessed with Osa

hvc - I think when it comes to Bosque we all say the same thing with different words :)

Forgot to mention the pre-dinner night walk with Eduardo is a must-do imho. You see tons of frogs, plus lots of others 'creatures of the night'.

San Isidro de El...
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8. Re: Obsessed with Osa

Midori, (love Midori!)

Did you get your Friends of the Osa T shirt? I thought about getting one but already have my Women of the Osa . I saw someone in the airport when I arrived that was wearing one, I wanted to go over and say hi because I had mine on too. They were in the departure area. Hubby just wanted to get through immigration and get out where he knew Orlando would be waiting with an Imperial so he hustled me along. Hard to resist the Pura Vida that is just a few feet away.

ALW,

The Osa is a wonderful place and it is hard not to be obsessed by it if you love nature. Made my first trek down there in the early 90's and have been returning just about every year since. Have stayed at the Corcovado Tent camp, Luna Lodge, Look Out Inn, Lapa Rios, Bosque del Cabo, Iguana Lodge, Pearl of the Osa, Bosque del Rio Tigre and way further towards the Pan Am hwy Suital Lodge. I have also stayed at Esquinas Lodge across the Gulfo Dulce. Husbands cousin owns a lodge near Bosque del Cabo.

We ran into a couple about 10-12 years ago at the Corcovado Tent Camp. He was loving it. His wife was not amused. He tried to explain that this was a more upscale kind of camping and I remember so vividly her reply......UPSCALE? UPSCALE? YOU CALL THIS UPSCALE? WE ARE STAYING IN A TENT!!!!!!! Literally not a happy camper. Tent camps aren't for everyone I guess. Thank goodness for places like Bosque del Cabo.

A really good alternative to staying in that area is to rent a house if you have the time. A search for Casa Bambu will bring you to several that they have. VRBO might have some listed as well. Casa Bambu et al as well as other houses are near Bosque del Cabo. The Cabo matapalo area is really amazing and has more wildlife there than I have seen anywhere else down there. I am sure it is all over but for some reason it is seen better in that area.

One suggestion I make to people is that you spend a night or two at Iguana Lodge (have been hearing good things about the Black Turtle Lodge lately which is right next door) near town but right on the beach. The beaches are very nice and it is a little less expensive to go on some of the tours because you don't have the expensive taxi rides back and forth to PJ. Escondido Trek Kayaking is just down the road from Iguana and there is some good birding over at Bosque del Rio Tigre if you are interested. As Midori mentioned you can also double up (hopefully) with other people to cut costs if you go from Bosque del Cabo. The Sanctuary is a very popular trip and you should be able to share expenses on that one.

Midori, thanks for the review and pics of the Sanctuary. It really is a great place and I knew I had to go too. It was just as great as you said. I suspect I will be back there again. I can still feel Lulu in my arms. Wonder if they need volunteers.

Seattle, Washington
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9. Re: Obsessed with Osa

Ok, Midori - Are you going to tell me who you are, or am I going to have to guess! Ha! I noticed you called me "hvc".

St. Petersburg...
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10. Re: Obsessed with Osa

sorry hvc - can't tell ya :) Just kidding....don't post here as much and unfortunately tully was already taken when I signed up.

S - no haven't got my shirt yet, will soon. I have an older one (white w/that Roy T monkey pic on back) but it's looking a little worse for the wear). I've been stopped a couple times wearing my WOO shirt down there by people, the back is such a lovely design too. I know how you feel, holding lulu I did not want to let her go, feeling her little hands holding mine was just something out of this world. And those eyes!

to alw - sorry for the mini-hijack - The Sanctuary's biggest bite comes from the boat ride cost, so where ever you can find others going at the same time would work in your favour. Just a fyi - don't wear bug spray or sunscreen when you go there, if winky is still crawling around they ask you don't touch her if you have that stuff on.