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looking for two different experiences - where to stay?

Saratoga Springs...
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looking for two different experiences - where to stay?

As my boyfriend and I are planning this trip, we have been thinking about staying at the Flamingo Beach Resort for a few days to be right on the beach, and then spending the remainder of our trip at El Sabanero Ecolodge to be more off the beaten path, so to speak. I just love the look of the bungalows and the view of the valley seems beautiful.

But while both places really stuck out to me on TA, I wonder if we are silly to stay at 2 places that are relatively in the same area. Is it ridiculous?? Are there comparable lodgings on the caribbean side? We will be renting an suv, so we are not too concerned if we have to drive across the country mid-trip.

Playa Conchal...
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1. Re: looking for two different experiences - where to stay?

Really depends on you-what you're hoping to see, how far you're willing to travel to change destinations, how long you have in the country.

Many people combine a beach stay with a trip to a rainforest area such as Arenal or Monteverde, some stay on the beach and take day trips to parks such as Rincon de la Vieja. You might also want to look at the weather patterns for your planned dates, as rainy seasons differ from coast to coast.

San Jose, Costa Rica
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2. Re: looking for two different experiences - where to stay?

Just check that your hotel in Flamingo is in good shape...some are way to old with 20 coats of paint...no good ...

Maybe check Cala Luna in Tamarindo or Capitan Suizo...Casa Cook...the 3 located in a great calm side of the Tamarindo beach!

If you like to drive...go to Manuel Antonio or Uvita...dominical...check around there for Tikivillas...incredible nice palce up in the hills with some great views ...perfect to relax...and do just nothing!

roadadvisor

Chicago, Illinois
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3. Re: looking for two different experiences - where to stay?

First consider how much time you have. If you're going for a week I think your plan is a good one. I The only downside I see is that this part of Costa Rica gets significantly less rain and if you're going in March or April the surrounding valley will be borwn - not lush green. If you're going May or later the landscape should green up. As an alternative you could look at something closer to Rincon de la Vieja in an area that is not too far from Liberia but is still green and lush - maybe check out the Hotel Boriquen Mountain Resort.

If you're going for 10 days or 2 weeks and don't mind spending 2 full days on the road then consider seeing 2 different corners of the country - with the 2nd being a rainforest adventure.

Saint Paul...
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4. Re: looking for two different experiences - where to stay?

You have to see Arenal! I was hesitant at first but now I'm so glad that we did 1/2 beach and 1/2 Arenal. We stayed at Nayara and it was perfect. They have individual bungalows with private jacuzzis on the decks. It is a magical place. The land is totally different, almost desert (very beautiful!) in playa hermosa to lush tropical oasis in Arenal. Different animals too.

Saratoga Springs...
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5. Re: looking for two different experiences - where to stay?

Ok...So now we've gotten up to 3 different areas. I'm officially overwhelmed.

We (meaning me...lol) def want to stay in the Flamingo area - I just think the beach looks gorgeous there. But now we are also considering staying a couple of nights down near Dominical/Uvita/Manuel Antonio area, and a couple of nights in Arenal. My boyfriend is hesitant to stay at Arenal because he thinks we'll get bored. I think the views alone are amazing and would make it worth it for at least a night or two.

We are only there for 8 nights in March. Is it crazy to plan so much into one trip? I don't want to feel like we are driving the whole time we are there, yet I want to experience as much as we can during that time. We aren't planning too many activities - We mainly just want to go to relax and enjoy all the beauty that Costa Rica has to offer.

Thoughts? Is it too much? Should we just stick to 2? If so, which ones? I would like to spend most of my time at the beach, so i was thinking 4 nights in Flamingo, and 2 nights each in the other areas...

Chicago, Illinois
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6. Re: looking for two different experiences - where to stay?

Yes it's crazy. If I were you I'd save Dominical/Uvita/Manuel Antonio for the next trip and just split between Flamingo and Arenal. May have to ditch boyfriend if he gets too bored in Arenal. You can certainly keep busy there with ziplines, whitewater rafting, canyoning, hike to waterfall and more. Check out DeSafio Adventures online. They're a great tour operator in Arenal that can set you up with all kinds of adventures.

Costa Rica
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7. Re: looking for two different experiences - where to stay?

Stick to two places. Most people visit a volcano/mountain location and a beach location to get sampler of what Costa Rica has to offer.

If you fly into LIR, Flamingo Beach would be fine and you can do day trips to Rincon de la Vieja for your "volcano" thing. Or you could spend part of the time at Flamingo and part of the time at Arenal.

Believe me, you will NOT get bored in Arenal!

San Jose, Costa Rica
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8. Re: looking for two different experiences - where to stay?

Two places would be fine. I do not think you would be bored in Arenal there is so much to do and the hot springs are so relaxing. I would say 2 nights in Arenal and the rest at Flamingo. If you want 3 areas you can do 2 nts Arenal, 2 in the Montverde Cloud Forest and 3 on the beach. From Arenal to Mon tverde you can use the land-boat transfer through the Arenal lake and save 1 and a half hours on the road.

Saratoga Springs...
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9. Re: looking for two different experiences - where to stay?

you guys are great! love all the feedback. So if we were to choose 2 places out of the 3...which would you recommend??

San Jose, Costa Rica
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10. Re: looking for two different experiences - where to stay?

I would go to Arenal and Flamingo