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6 Days in Costa Rica - Itinerary Help Appreciated

6 Days in Costa Rica - Itinerary Help Appreciated

Old Nov 22, 13, 3:16 pm
  #1  
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6 Days in Costa Rica - Itinerary Help Appreciated

Hi all,

My boyfriend and I are taking advantage of a cheap AA fare and travelling to Costa Rica from the UK for some sun and warmth at the end of January.

We arrive at SJO, via Miami, late on the 29th Jan and leave early on the 5th, so we will have 6 full days to get out of San Josť and see some wildlife. Ideally we'd like to see some wildlife, and generally experience the 'tropical'.

I am aware that we can't even begin to scratch the surface in 6 days, so any suggestions for itineraries would be really useful. We like the look of Tortuguero, but Manuel Antonio looks great too. I want to see sloths and toucans! We aren't much for extreme sports or lounging on the beach - we like boat rides and walking and good local food.

Ideally we'd like to avoid renting a car, so we're ok to incur the additional costs of transfers and internal flights, but I will drive if it's the best way of getting around.

Thanks in advance.
saint_em is offline  
Old Nov 22, 13, 4:39 pm
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Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: San Jose, Costa Rica
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I think Tortuguero is fun. Because of the difficulty in getting there (no roads) most people go on an organized excursion with one of the lodges up there. They pick you up at your San Jose hotel, take you to their boat landing about two hours north of the city, and then take you by boat the rest of the way to Tortuguero. They do the same in reverse when it's time to come back. The package prices include your tours, lodging, transportation, and food. Alcoholic beverages are extra. You take all your meals at your lodge. To make it worth your while, realistically you need three days and two nights to do Tortuguero. That would take up three of your six full days in Costa Rica.

Manuel Antonio is about two hours by road from San Jose in the opposite direction. That could be your other three days. It has a great selection of hotels in all price ranges and probably the best selection of restaurants outside San Jose. Lots of activities too, including a nice national park (which is closed on Mondays).

Your flight schedule means that you're going to have to spend your first and last nights in or around San Jose. The airport is about 20 km from the city, with a lot of good lodging options nearby. You don't necessarily have to spend that last night in the city itself.
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Old Nov 22, 13, 5:20 pm
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That's great, thanks! Do you have any recommendations for tours to Tortuguero? Would we need a tour to Manuel Antonio too, or is that easy by public transport? It looks like there are flights throughout the day to Quepos - would that be the most efficient use of our time?
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Old Nov 22, 13, 11:23 pm
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The major lodges in Tortuguero:

Pachira Lodge
Laguna Lodge
Evergreen Lodge
Mawamba Lodge
Tortuga Lodge (a little more expensive than the others)

Google the names; you'll find their websites. All offer packages that include transportation to and from San Jose.

There's no real need to do an organized tour to Manuel Antonio. It's about a 25-minute flight from San Jose, or a couple of hours overland. There are two major shuttle companies that can take you there to and from San Jose, along with other passengers. They use 15-seat minivans, hotel to hotel.

Interbus:

www.interbusonline.com

Gray Line Costa Rica:

www.graylinecostarica.com

I've only mentioned Tortuguero and Manuel Antonio because those were the two places you mentioned.
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Old Nov 23, 13, 3:27 am
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Thanks for these, I'll look them up.

What would you recommend, if not Tortuguero and Manuel Antonio? I am open to ideas; at the moment I am largely being driven by what looks prettiest on the various websites I've found!
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Old Dec 27, 13, 2:06 pm
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Join Date: Feb 2013
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I'm trying to plan an itenerary too for 6 girls to CR in May from the US looking to stay around Manuel Antonio or Dominical, so this thread is really helpful. thx!
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Old Dec 30, 13, 7:20 pm
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If you say you aren't much for the beach you might want to consider Arenal and/or Monteverde. There are tons of low key outdoorsy options for activities around there.
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