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Best base for active family enjoyment in green season

berkeley, ca
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Best base for active family enjoyment in green season

Our family of four (two girls ages 9 and 12) is leaving for Costa Rica in 2 weeks - mid-June. We'll be in CR for a total of 11 nights - tentative itinerary includes: 1 night in Alajuela before flying down to Osa for 5 nights, then return flight to San Jose. Spend 2 nights somewhere like Arenal/Monteverde. Then drive out to North Pacific Coast for final 3 nights. Our return flight is out of Liberia so will probably have to drop off the rental car there if not too expensive. Otherwise, I guess we'd take a bus from San Jose to Liberia and rent a car there.

I'd be interested in any feedback you might have on this tentative plan. Also, about accommodations in Osa and around Samara (see below).

We are looking forward to nature walks/wildlife spotting, waterfalls, good swimming/snorkeling, Costa Rica ambience, adventure activities (like tree climbing, zip lines). In Osa, would love to stay in a nice, friendly place and have been looking at Iguana Lodge and Bosque del Cabo. But, also considering the lovely sounding places in Drakes Bay. Which would you choose?

Finally, for the couple of days we have in between Osa and the North Pacific Coast, would you focus on the Central Valley (Volcan Paos) or the Northern Zone (Volcan Arenal/Monteverde)?

Thank you in advance for any tips.

Best,

Gale

San Jose, Costa Rica
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1. Re: Best base for active family enjoyment in green season

Iguana Lodge is a nice place...others around charge for one night as much as they payed for the whole farm years ago!

Carate is also very nice...some nice simple places around there...SIMPLE..like ISIEAMI...Luna Lodge...

Drakes is another good alternative...

Maybe a combination with Arenal Volcano...from there you may drive to some nice beach no far from Liberia , like Tamarindo beach!

Maybe...Alajuela...Osa...San Jose...Arenal...Guanacaste beach...Liberia ...back home!

You can deal with ALAMO...BUDGET...TOYOTA...AVIS...HERTZ...all of them offer offices in San Jose and Liberia...stay as far as you can from Economy Rent a Car and lately Thifty rent a car !

roadadvisor

Pensacola, Florida
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2. Re: Best base for active family enjoyment in green season

www.mapache.com good car rental place with offices in SJO and LIR

might consider driving with 4 to save and keeping the car the whole time

Expect lots of rain particularly in the Osa.

www.bosquedelcabo.com best there

www.ylangylangresort.com best for your beach time at the end

or perhaps

www.paradisus-playa-conchal.com or www.reservaconchal.com

to be a little closer to LIR

Have fun,

3. Re: Best base for active family enjoyment in green season

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Removed on: 03 June 2010, 16:21
Seattle, Washington
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4. Re: Best base for active family enjoyment in green season

Have you considered splitting your time in Osa? Like 3 nights Bosque del Cabo and 2 nights Carate or Puerto Jimenez (maybe La Leona Lodge or Iguana Lodge)? Tough decisions I know! With kids that age they would love the animal sanctuary which is easier from PJ so you don't have to make the trip back to town from BDC. If you think the kids are troopers and would enjoy a full day hike into Corcovado then I say go for it. If not, BDC offers some really great trails and plenty of wildlife. Last trip there was a Puma sighted hunting agouti twice during my stay. Besides that there is just an abundance of wildlife to be seen. I have a daughter close in age to yours and it's her favorite place anywhere. :-)

Edited: 02 June 2010, 17:25
Washington
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605 posts
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5. Re: Best base for active family enjoyment in green season

Here is kind of what we did (we flew into SJO and left Liberia as well)...it may save you some backtracking..SJO to Arenal (great area for kids)..drive down to manual antonio (drop off rental car)..get transportation to the town of Sierpe and take the boat to Drake Bay and stay/explore OSA...fly out of Drake towards Liberia..spend a couple of nights up there then leave from LIberia...just something to think about. Are you arriving in san jose at night? If not, I suggest heading to Arenal when you arrive. Your kids are going to LOVE IT!

Puerto Jimenez
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6. Re: Best base for active family enjoyment in green season

If you are flying into Puerto Jimenez, there are a few places you can stay. check out cabinas jimenez (waterfront, in town, not too expensive) www.cabinasjimenez.com , osa resort (a little ways out of town, but not too far... pool, airconditioning, a little nicer and upscale), iguana lodge and bosque del cabo are great, but a little ways out of town. all of these places will pick you up from the airport. If you decide to go to Corcovado (which is the best part about the Osa), you can spend the night in los patos station without a reservation no problem.

i did the night ziplining at bosque del cabo, and it was pretty cool. if you are going to monteverde, you might want to consider doing the ziplining there. they offer longer lines, the tarzan swing, rapeling, and a superman line. the tarzan swing is a little scary though.

enjoy!

vilmar lopez

vilmarlopez62@hotmail.com

Puerto Jimenez...
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7. Re: Best base for active family enjoyment in green season

I respectfully disagree about both the Sierpe/Drake Bay suggestion and the overnighting in Los Patos Ranger Station Suggestion, sorry.

The reasons are:

1. Drake Bay is rather isolated. I wouldn't recommend taking a boat into the mouth of the Sierpe river with your whole family in the rainy season, the waters there can be very dangerous as you head to open ocean to get to Drake. Also, once your in Drake, it's difficult to explore any other areas of the Peninsula from there. Boats are a pricy way to get around, it would cost your family around $75 each to take a day trip to Corcovado (and if the water is choppy due to inclement weather, then it's no fun...)

2: Los Patos Ranger Station is not that interesting for your girls - you would need to camp there, there are no lodging facilities at the ranger station, and no cooking facilities either. A better bet for exploring Corcovado is the hike in from La Leona as your girls will enjoy the beaches, perhaps they will see turtles laying eggs, and the amount of wildlife is superior (IMHO) on this trail.

Sorry to contradict the other posters, but these are my opinions.

Enjoy your time on the Osa - it's raining cats and dogs today, so please be prepared...

Pura Vida,

Ballardo Diaz - Jungle Guide - Osa, Corcovado, La Amistad

Puerto Jimenez
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8. Re: Best base for active family enjoyment in green season

stay away from national rent a car too...

Washington
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605 posts
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9. Re: Best base for active family enjoyment in green season

We went to Drake Bay in the green season on the Sierpe. It was incredible. I'm assuming it would be more dangerous in a storm but so is being in a small airplane. And yes, Drake Bay is very isolated but we absolutely loved it.

10. Re: Best base for active family enjoyment in green season

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Removed on: 01 December 2010, 06:28