Hello, my wife and I are planning our first trip to Costa Rica and would appreciate any advice you could give to help us to fill in the gaps and identify any fatal errors. We like to do a lot of hiking and nature oriented things, but want to enjoy some of the local culture and food as well.
We have already booked the flights and the permits for Corcovado Nat'l Park, so I will put a * by the things that can't really be changed. Any ideas for fun activities or restaurants would be great.
Day 1 - Fly into SJO at 9:45 PM*. Picking up rental car and staying at Courtyard Marriott* near the airport with free points. Hopefully buying some groceries near the hotel. Are places like grocery stores and WalMart open late in Costa Rica?
Day 2 - Drive to Arenal, possibly staying at Hotel Cerro Azul. Ideas for hikes or tours, especially a canopy tour and/or zipline? Can you drive to and around Arenal in a regular car, or do you need a 4x4?.
Day 3 - Arenal
Day 4 - Leave Arenal, drive to SJO and fly from SJO to Drake Bay on Sansa (Dep. 12:45, Arr. 13:28*) Any ideas for hotels? $30-$100 range
Day 5-7 - Take boat to Sirena Station and hike around Corcovado*, staying in dorm rooms, return to Drake Bay by boat. I have figured out that the boats leave Drake Bay at 06:00, for $30pp, but can't figure out where they leave from or when they leave to return from Sirena. I assume that our hotel will help us to arrange this, is that correct?
Day 8-10 - Drake Bay, Tracie the Bug Lady, snorkeling at Cano Island, beach time. Any specific recommendations for things to do or places to eat?
Day 11 - Leave Drake Bay, fly to SJO* and from there back home.