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Planning Costa Rica

Which Manuel Antonio National Park hotels are on sale?
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california
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Planning Costa Rica

girlncaliforn...

california

posts: 82

reviews: 13

“ Planning Costa Rica ”

Apr 27, 2012, 6:42 AM

Hi, we are travelling w/ a 8yo girl and 11 yo boy in late june or mid july; thinking ofstaying in arenal kioro x 3 d, then parador x 4 days. what's the weather like? are there any special precautions w/ kids other than common sense of course? the package comes in w/ a rental car; is it better to rent a car or just hire transpO?

Any must things to do? What to avoid? Do I have to worry about the water? Thank you so much!!!

Manuel Antonio
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1. Re: Planning Costa Rica

I recommend the car for those hotels unless you are a nervous driver, then go with the private transport option. Also, the water is potable throughout CR, but if you are delicate then lean on the side of caution and drink bottled water. Your time of year you can pretty much wing it and let your hotel help you choose activities with the kids. They are a great age to enjoy many many things in CR. Also, if you use common sense you will not have to worry about much, CR is an easy place to have lots of fun, and the Ticos are so friendly and love kids, so they will help you make the most of your trip! Enjoy!

La Fortuna de San...
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2. Re: Planning Costa Rica

Sounds like you are planning a great trip. Parador is a nice resort, but a little isolated from other restaurants and shops. A rental car would be nice to have there. You may want to reconsider Kioro as it is not the best family place and frankly overpriced. There are plenty of other options in the Arenal area, which are more affordable, have better service and lower rates such as Lost Iguana, Mountain Paradise, Arenal Springs or Arenal Nayara.

Weather is hit or miss in June, but generally when it rains, it clears up within an hour or so. To reiterate what LivNLarge said, the water is potable, but use bottle water if you have a delicate stomach. I would not worry about ice cubes (genuine concern with places like Mexico or Belize).

No worries on the rental car if you use common sense. Drive between destinations during the day. Don't leave anything in your car unattended. Get a good map or a GPS.

San Jose, Costa Rica
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3. Re: Planning Costa Rica

You have chosen 2 very nice hotels. Arenal Kioro has its on hot Springs pools on site, very luxurious all rooms are big with a 5 people in room jacuzzi facing the volcano. Another luxurious hotel in Arenal is The Springs Resort. El Parador has a free shuttle service 5 times a day to the public beach close to the park, where you will find many restaurants. You can use that free shuttle or you can also take a taxi (the hotel would call one for you). It is a 5 minute drive from El Parador and taxis are not expensive. Other deluxe choices in Manuel Antonio are Arenas de l Mar, Si Como No, La Mariposa

california
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125 posts
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4. Re: Planning Costa Rica

Thank you so much for your replies. Really helpful. Would the Royal Corin be a btter option than the Kioro. I saw it as having all those TA awards, but somehow none of you recommended it? Thank you

Manuel Antonio
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5. Re: Planning Costa Rica

I personally prefer the Kioro, the Royal Corin is beautiful but not very authentic feeling like Kioro. Enjoy!

Halifax, Canada
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6. Re: Planning Costa Rica

hi,

just back from arenal today. my daughter is in a school in monteverde and her annual field trip went to los lagos and to the arenal national park. the park walk was nice (1 hour or so, mostly flat except the last 10 minutes up to the volcano) and los lagos was great for kids-3 water slides, crocs/butterflies/an ant colony that's really neat/pretty gardens, self contained, clean, great breakfasts. the resort is large and we were glad to have our own car so we didn't have to wait for the shuttles.

I'm writing to say that we were glad to spend only 2 nights there. it's much more touristy and a lot less friendly than other places we've been. food is expensive and not amazing. if you have time, i'd try and spend only 2 nights in arenal and then another 2-3 nights in monteverde (about a 3 hour drive from arenal around the lake; quite pretty, although 1 of the 3 hours is really bumpy and slow). it's is an amazing place-a bit cooler, much friendlier people, better food/coffee, and a lot more authentic of a costa rican experience. the ziplines are wonderful here and the hanging bridges are, too. the best part is you won't melt! every time we leave 'the mountain' we wonder why the heck we did. there are lots of great lodging choices here as well, and june isn't very busy.

one more thing. we've been here since january and have rented 4 kinds of cars. low ones are dicey on dirt roads; 4 x 4s can be really bumpy. bring a copy of your insurance policy from home (the insurance is EXPENSIVE here and won't be factored into a quote-you can save some of the cost by proving coverage to them) and insist on good suspension/ac. we hated to be picky gringos but swapped out one 4 x 4 for better a/c-it revolutionalized our time here. driving's great-slow, scenic, and an experience in and of itself. people are amazing and will always help you get where you're going with a smile. if you get lost, just have a batido (milkshake) and enjoy where you are.

best of luck and enjoy your trip! costa rica is one of the coolest places on the planet.

california
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7. Re: Planning Costa Rica

Thank you so much for your comments!!! now we're looking at all-inclusives. Would the westin be a better choice than the jw marriott in terms of location/ amenities/ value for money? Thank you again!

San Jose, Costa Rica
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8. Re: Planning Costa Rica

The JW Marriott is not an all inclusive property (but they have a plan in which you pay extra for a meal plan and drinks). Westin Playa Conchal is an all inclusive and has more amenities and a nice beach.

9. Re: Planning Costa Rica

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