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1-day/2-day trips from MA area

Helensburgh, United...
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1-day/2-day trips from MA area

My partner and I are visiting CR at the end of March, first with 8 days at the Hotel Parador, MA and then 2 days in Arenal.

I've read plenty of posts suggesting that MA park can be pretty crowded and was wondering if the helpful folks on these forums could help out with a few queries:

Firstly, how easy is it to rent a car in the MA area - are the local rental places reliable, and do they drop off at local hotels (including the Parador)?

Out thoughts are to perhaps rent a car for 3 or 4 of the days we're in the MA area and go on some trips of our own - can anyone recommend places to visit that are easy enough to reach and get back to MA in a day, or even a two day trip (including an overnight stay)? I'm an amateur photographer and would particularly like to see some more of CR's animals and birds than we might at MA.

thanks in advance,

Marc

Imlay City, Michigan
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1. Re: 1-day/2-day trips from MA area

We are going to do a day trip to Corcovado National Park. Never been there before but it looks nice and my husband is an amateur photographer and that is his pick as well.

Texas
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for Arenal Volcano National Park, La Fortuna de San Carlos
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2. Re: 1-day/2-day trips from MA area

Manuel Antonio has tons of wildlife, so you can probably get some great pictures there as well. We saw lots of monkeys, sloths, iguanas, birds, etc. both in the park and on our hotel's grounds. Sightings are pretty easy since the wildlife is fairly concentrated.

Helensburgh, United...
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3. Re: 1-day/2-day trips from MA area

Thanks for the replies - Corcovado does look interesting, are there organised trips to there from MA or would a hire car still be the best bet?

I guess we'll probably just see how we feel after a day or two in the area and if we get the urge to venture outside the MA area, we'll just see what options are available.

nebraska
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4. Re: 1-day/2-day trips from MA area

Corcovado while amazing is really not a day trip.

One place we enjoy in the MA area is Rainmaker

http://www.rainmakercostarica.org/

Texas
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for Arenal Volcano National Park, La Fortuna de San Carlos
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5. Re: 1-day/2-day trips from MA area

I really can't imagine doing a day trip to Corcovado from Manuel Antonio either. If I were going to Corcovado I'd want to be staying in the area.

Joyce, I'm curious about the Rainmaker tour. Did you do that on your own or have a guide? Is there any wildlife there? I know it has nice hiking and some waterfalls - is that right?

San Jose, Costa Rica
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6. Re: 1-day/2-day trips from MA area

Nice but not that affordable...a day boat snorkeling tour to Caño Island...from MA...about 2 hours ride each way...you will see dolphins...turtles...during the summer months...even whales...the snorkeling at Caño is great...and if possible hike inside the island and check the stone spheres...that is somenthing else!

roadadvisor

nebraska
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7. Re: 1-day/2-day trips from MA area

volcanogirl, We did the riverwalk & canopy. We had a guide but really not necessary. A few birds but no wildlife as we didn't get there until late morning.

It was a scenic hike as you go along the river then up on the bridges and then back down along the river. It is not as developed as the hanging bridges in the Arenal area--more rustic but we liked that. It was not difficult hiking.

Texas
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for Arenal Volcano National Park, La Fortuna de San Carlos
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8. Re: 1-day/2-day trips from MA area

Thank you, joyce; I appreciate all the good info.

Manuel Antonio
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9. Re: 1-day/2-day trips from MA area

Normally I would say you don't really need a rental car in our area, though Parador is located at the end of a side road and a bit of a walk to go to other restaurants, etc., so this may be a good choice for you. There are quite a few rental car agencies in our area, so you can decide when you get here, and they will deliver right to your hotel. For photography, some of the best tours are going to be the guided park tour (TAKE the guide), as well as the Mangrove Boat tour. Both of those will give you excellent photo opps and are highly recommended. Anyone of the zipline tours in the area have good pictures to be taken, as well as the trails around your hotel. I would get to the area first and then decide what works for you best once you are here. Your hotel tour desk will be able to help you as well! Enjoy!

Winnipeg, Canada
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10. Re: 1-day/2-day trips from MA area

You might want to visit Carara National Park near Jaco - especially for birds.

Other day trip places, especially with a car could be Domincal or the Uvita area.

The last week in March is Holy Week this year - so pretty well all places in Costa Rica will be busy.

raquel