Friday, June 24, 2022

What to know before leaving for Costa Rica

No matter how small Costa Rica appears on the map – if you plan to visit the entire country in two weeks, plan to see it again. The ridge divides the land into two parts, and even on the most popular tourist routes, you can encounter some of Costa Rica’s legendary roads, so slow down and learn about a few places. There are two destinations in one week and three destinations in two weeks. Plan your return trip.

The rainy season shouldn’t be discouraging

Don’t let the rainy season from May to November stop you from visiting Costa Rica, which is the “green season”. The crowds were down, prices were lowered, and the campaign was lush. In most months there will be a few hours of afternoon showers, after which you can plan different activities according to this schedule: you can also wear a poncho and rain boots to organize many activities in the rain.

Not to be missed

Costa Rica is a nation with one of the greatest biodiversity in the world, home to numerous animal and plant species, large and small. In Tortuguero, one of the areas with the greatest biological variety, you can meet many animals such as monkeys, crocodiles, sloths, iguanas, parrots, toucans and many others, as well as seeing the turtles laying their eggs on the beach. Manuel Antonio Park is the smallest of the nature reserves but the most famous because it allows you to walk on the beach with the forest in the background: it hosts lush vegetation and the beach is of white sand lapped by the classic blue sea. Parco Braulio Carrillo is characterized by its position: it is located at high altitude in a humid area and has two extinct volcanoes, the Cacho Negro, with its classic conical shape, and the Barva which reaches almost 3000 meters.

It is one of the most visited parks in Costa Rica where you can admire various types of animals. 150 species of mammals and 350 birds are housed in the Arenal Park, an active volcano just over 1600 meters high, where sometimes you can witness the red lava flows that descend from its slopes. For those who love the most beautiful beaches, they can be found on the Nicoya Peninsula: Playa del Coco, Playa Flamingo, Playa Tamarindo, Playa Hermosa, Playa Junquillal, Playa Conchal parade. Among the most enchanting locations of this peninsula are: Samara, Paraiso, Montezuma, Manzanillo and Playa Tambor La Paz Waterfall, the most impressive waterfalls in Costa Rica with their 5 jumps ranging from 25 meters to 40 meters. Not to be missed is the suggestive Mariposario with butterflies of all colors and hundreds of hummingbirds.

What to bring

You should dress in layers for a trip to Costa Rica depending on the places you intend to visit. In San José, light clothing is fine all year round, a sweatshirt or sweater for the night and from May to November you must bring a raincoat or umbrella. For the plains and coasts, even lighter clothes and a sweatshirt with a light raincoat in the rainy season, very light clothes; in the rainy season, a light sweatshirt and a light raincoat for thunderstorms. Trekking lovers in the high mountains cannot forget warm clothes, anoraks and walking shoes.

How much does it cost to travel to Costa Rica?

Unlike extremely cheap countries, such as Guatemala, Nicaragua and Honduras, Costa Rica is a rather expensive destination, especially if you want to experience the country to the fullest, thus participating in guided tours and participating in the various activities proposed.

Hotels and hostels: The average price of a private room in a hostel is around 20-30 euros with a shared bathroom. Hotels are more expensive, from 50 euros upwards. If you want to spend the night in some Ecolodges (do it at least one night), the price of a room goes from 70 euros upwards, but it’s worth it.

Restaurants: the price of the restaurants depends mainly on the location. In tourist resorts such as Manuel Antonio or Tamarindo, a dinner in a good restaurant costs 20-25 euros each, but if you choose soft drinks (small family-run restaurants), you can easily stay around 10 euros each.

Activities and guided tours: hurt the pain. They are all quite expensive. An excursion for bird watching or trekking in the forest starts at 30 euros to go up. The Canopy Tour starts at 60 euros, while a visit to the coffee plantations costs around 40 euros. The entrance to the parks is generally around 10 euros.

Renting a car is complicated

Renting a car in Costa Rica is one of the best ways to get to know the country. Trust us, we recommend a 4 × 4. The advantages are obvious: you can stop whenever you want, enjoy the view even on bumpy detours, visit small towns off the main road, and dive into the beach. However, renting a car in Costa Rica is stressful and visitors should read the small print. For starters, companies charge an exorbitant fee for commissions and deposits. Typically, a card requires a minimum credit of $ 1,500 (plus rental fee).

This should be an authorization-only transaction, and your card shouldn’t be charged unless the device is damaged. However, it reduces the available balance. It should also be noted that most agencies require a credit card. When they authorize a debit card, the deposit can cost a lot more, as agencies that accept debit cards generally require you to obtain maximum coverage for damages. Also note that special offers, coupons, promotions, airline points and other special offers generally do not apply in Costa Rica.

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