Tequila Tales from an All Inclusive Addict
January 16, 2013

Top Tips on How to Start Planning Your Trip to Costa Rica

Top Tips on How to Start Planning Your Trip to Costa Rica

​Costa Rica is Hot Hot Hot this year!

I’m getting lots of requests for trips to Costa Rica.  People have heard all about this beautiful country filled with virgin jungles, stunning volcanoes, natural hot springs, clean beaches, hiking trails, canopy zip lines, white-water rafting, monkeys, birds, and amazing coffee.

Well, I’m here to tell you it’s all true.  But...how can you have it all?  

What do you define as your perfect vacation?  That is step number one.  

Here are some things to think about:

First, there are two airports you can fly into - Liberia & San Jose.  San Jose is a large city which I personally see no point in staying in except to spend a night after a late arrival flight or before an early morning departure.  Liberia airport leads you to the Guanacaste region which is known as the beach region.  San Jose has more flights so it’s normally where you’ll fly into.  Transfers can be expensive and driving can be hazardous so if you want a beach location or Guanacaste in particular, you really should arrive into Liberia.

Second, what do you want to do on this trip?  You need to know that first before you plan your itinerary.  You can stay at one resort and travel from there or you can stay in multiple regions at a couple of different hotels.  Whichever you choose, it will have an impact on the tours you may be able to do.  

I think a multiple area vacation to Costa Rica is perfect.  I personally like flying into San Jose and staying a few nights in the Arenal Volcano area then staying a few nights in the Manuel Antonio region.  If time permits it’s neat to go through and maybe stay 1 or 2 nights in the Monteverde region also.  Those are my favorite areas.  

I can’t imagine a trip to Costa Rica without waking up to a view of Arenal Volcano.  There’s nothing quite like sitting on your balcony with a morning coffee watching a cloud move across the tip of the volcano then revealing it in full majesty.  Incredible!  Another bonus of staying in a volcano area resort are the natural hot springs fed by the volcano.  No need for heating the pools here - they’re naturally warm and healthy and incredibly inviting especially for a late-night swim.

I also can’t imagine staying in Costa Rica without going to Selvatura which is a zip line and nature attraction.  I love heights and there’s nothing like a good, high zip line and that’s exactly what you’ll find at Selvatura.  If someone in your crowd doesn’t like heights, there’s lots to do at the park while others are zip lining.

Third, a choice you’ll have to make is whether you want transportation arranged for you or if you’ll be renting a vehicle.  Driving in Costa Rica is neither hard nor easy.  The biggest challenges I see are washed out roads in their rainy or “green” season and lack of road signs.  When you’re heading across country you won’t be on major highways and will be using some side roads.  If you’re driving I strongly recommend purchasing full car rental insurance, having a GPS, a road map and good instructions before you leave your hotel to set out. The real benefit to driving on your own is your ability to explore the area as you want.  Hiring transfers makes for a relaxing vacation and the transfer guides can be a wealth of information about the country and help you out with special requests (like finding a card for your camera, or taking you to a pharmacy).

Whatever your choice, call someone who’s been there before and can help you answer the many questions that will come up along your planning journey so you’re prepared in every way.

About Sharon

At Sunseekers Vacations, your All Inclusive Resorts Specialist, we have the pleasure of helping busy, time-stretched people who really need of a break, take the exact vacation they need.

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