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Itinerary-very long :-() and questions

Michigan USA
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752 posts
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Itinerary-very long :-() and questions

Some background: 3 couples, one in their mid 50, the other 2 mid 40s.

Our plans are to visit for 10 days, Jan. 9th – 19th, 2013. Our current plan is to fly into San Jose on Wednesday arriving in the afternoon (around 1 p.m.). After clearing customs a quick stop to get duty free liquor and then picking up our car from Vamos 4x4. I am hoping all this takes less than 2 hours (we don’t/won’t drive after dark), so this will give us approx. 2 1/2 hrs driving time. We will be driving (PanAmerican hiway 1 to Hiway 3 thru Orotina then road 27 to 34) from SJO airport to our villa near Tarcoles. (we will be bringing our GPS with us and will upload the map from navsat before coming down. We also have the fantastic waterproof map that was suggested on TA) We hope to stop in Orotina to pick up some groceries, fruits/veggies, beer (I’ve been told there is a super Mercado that is easily located from the highway there).

We have three full days in Tarcoles. Thursday we will get the lay of the land, find out where our Friday fishing charter is located (Los Suenos) and drive down towards Jaco/MA and maybe as far as Quepos (depending on how many times we stop. Again no nighte driving) for sightseeing and eating. :-) Friday is fishing all day, hopefully catching as well. LOL Saturday we are planning on hiking to Bijugual Waterfall and doing the hanging bridges and maybe the zip line at Hotel Villa Lapas. (Looking for anyone who might have done this to get their insight if it’s any good)

On Sunday we leave here and drive to our next destination, a villa between Samara and Playa Carrillo where we will stay for 6 days. (drive 34 to 27 to 23 to PanAM 1to Limonal 18. Then 21 to Nicoya and then 160 to Samara)

While there we hope to explore Samara and Playa Carillo beaches and restaurants/bars. One day we plan on taking a day trip “north” on 160and the next day a trip “south” on 160 just exploring and sightseeing, stopping when the mood strikes us for food and drink. We are also thinking we will try and fit in another fishing trip one day while here.

We leave on Saturday from Liberia. :-(

My specific questions: 1) Are there any other waterfalls nearby that we could hike to/see other than Bijugual? 2) Will we be able to take/drive Road 160 both North and South in January? 3) as above; has anyone any experience with Hotel Villa Lapas? Specifically their zip line and hanging bridges?

If anyone out there has any suggestions of things we might do while at either location, we would gladly welcome them. I’m not a big fan of flying by the seat of my pants, and would prefer to have some things PLANNED and then if they don’t work out/happen so be it.

I’ve been trying to do as much research on my own as possible and have read thru the TA forum and taken notes every day for the past 7 months! LOL

Thanks in advance to all the TA forum members who answer the same questions and offer suggestions to the many people like me, over and over again. I APPRECIATE IT!!

SORRY FOR the LONG post. We are just SOOOO excited! LOL

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San Jose
San Jose
San Jose Metro, Costa Rica
Orotina
Orotina
Province of Alajuela, Costa Rica
Juan Santamaria Intl Airport
Juan Santamaria Intl...
San Jose, Costa Rica
Tarcoles
Tarcoles
Tarcoles District, Costa Rica
Los Suenos
Los Suenos
Province of Puntarenas, Costa Rica
Jaco
Jaco
Jaco District, Costa Rica
Quepos
Quepos
Province of Puntarenas, Costa Rica
Hotel Villa Lapas
Hotel Villa Lapas
323 Reviews
Tarcoles, Costa Rica
Samara Beach
Samara Beach
1,315 Reviews
Playa Samara, Costa Rica
Playa Carrillo
Playa Carrillo
Province of Guanacaste, Costa Rica
Nicoya
Nicoya
Province of Guanacaste, Costa Rica
Playa Manuel Antonio
Playa Manuel Antonio
10,673 Reviews
Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica
Liberia
Liberia
Province of Guanacaste, Costa Rica
San Jose, Costa Rica
Level Contributor
49,595 posts
35 reviews
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1. Re: Itinerary-very long :-() and questions

Really not much I can add...looks like you did your homework...

Just buckle up and enjoy the ride in PARADISE!

roadadvisor

Michigan USA
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752 posts
3 reviews
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2. Re: Itinerary-very long :-() and questions

Gracias roadadvisor!

We will buckle up and enjoy your paradise!

Have started brushing up on my espanol and marking up our map. :-)

Another question if you please. I am estimating it will take us about 5 1/2 hrs to drive from Tarcoles to Playa Carillo. Is this close?

Can't wait to have our first casado and some gallo pinto.

Mentioned in this post
Tarcoles
Tarcoles
Tarcoles District, Costa Rica
Playa Manuel Antonio
Playa Manuel Antonio
10,673 Reviews
Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica
Brooklyn, New York
Destination Expert
for Sarapiqui
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6,436 posts
148 reviews
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3. Re: Itinerary-very long :-() and questions

We stayed at Villa Lapas. We did some hiking on their hanging bridges/hiking trails. Didn't do the zipline, but it didn't seem like it was on par with other zip line courses we've done.

There is very good wildlife on their grounds, though. We sawa a tamandua (anteater) on our way back to our room from the parking lot.

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Hotel Villa Lapas
Hotel Villa Lapas
323 Reviews
Tarcoles, Costa Rica
Michigan USA
Level Contributor
752 posts
3 reviews
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4. Re: Itinerary-very long :-() and questions

Thanks Racandee! We will look at doing zip lines elsewhere.

WOW an ant eater huh? that's so awesome!

San Jose, Costa Rica
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49,595 posts
35 reviews
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5. Re: Itinerary-very long :-() and questions

Dear Cold in Michigan...

From Tarcoles...to Carrillo to Pan Am Hwy then to Amistad bridge in Limonal ...then to Nicoya...Samara...Carrilo ...yes very close 5 hours...minutes more minutes less...but a nice ride...I love it...and the road all the way in perfect condition...

roadadvisor

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Tarcoles
Tarcoles
Tarcoles District, Costa Rica
Nicoya
Nicoya
Province of Guanacaste, Costa Rica
Samara Beach
Samara Beach
1,315 Reviews
Playa Samara, Costa Rica
Chicago, IL
Level Contributor
510 posts
27 reviews
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6. Re: Itinerary-very long :-() and questions

Racandee,

How did you like Villa Lapas? Would you recommend staying there?

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Hotel Villa Lapas
Hotel Villa Lapas
323 Reviews
Tarcoles, Costa Rica
Brooklyn, New York
Destination Expert
for Sarapiqui
Level Contributor
6,436 posts
148 reviews
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7. Re: Itinerary-very long :-() and questions

It's a very decent place to stay. The location is perfect--a 3-5 minute drive to both Carara and the tarcoles boat tours. I wouldn't bother with meals other than breakfast there--overpriced. They have a neat little craft market that looks like a small village. Rooms are okay--nothing special, but perfectly adequate.

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Carara
Carara
Province of San Jose, Costa Rica
8. Re: Itinerary-very long :-() and questions

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