Costa Rica

Language- Spanish

Hello- Hola

Good Bye- Adios

Thank you- Gracias

Currency- Costa Rican colon

Monteverde- (November 2012) we crossed the border from Nicaragua into Costa Rica- Monteverde is where the famous cloud forest is- you can do some ziplining, a coffee tour, bat jungle, butterfly gardens and so much more! there are also lots of monkeys here- it is such a magical place to explore

La Fortuna- (November 2012) there is so much to do here- you have a view of Arenal Volcano right in town- you can do an Arenal Volcano hike or visit the hanging bridges park- we only had 3 days here so chose the Los Lagos hot springs, repelling and zipline at La Fortuna Waterfalls and white water rafting on Rio Balsa- all our guides were amazing and we had so much fun – the hot springs even had a swim up bar

La Fortuna (March 2023) we came back 10 years later!!! We took a shuttle from San Jose to La Fortuna- it was about $40 a person- you can take the public bus for cheaper but it’s hot and crowded- so we choose the shuttle- it also picks you up and drops you off at the places you are staying- we did hot springs, spa day, sloth jungle walk & Arenal hanging bridges park- we did 6 days without a rental car- they do have Ubers you can use to get around and the tours you book includes transportation- we also learned to pay for the tours and accommodations with American dollars for a better rate- you can also use credit card for things but they want cash for the tours/ even our Villa wanted cash- and American money is way better for exchange rate- so don’t exchange money! Eat at the sodas – they are the local restaurants and are super yummy while not breaking the bank on food – we stayed at Villas Vilma and had such an amazing view of the volcano- and a hot tub and pool- we loved it there

Due to volcanic activity from Arenal Volcano, La Fortuna has 12 hot springs!! The most desired is Tabacon Hot Spring- we didn’t buy the day pass soon enough – do at least 1 to 2 months in advance- this hot spring has a jungle vibe – cost is around $80 a person so pricey but the most beautiful hot spring- Los Lagos Hot Spring $16 person – this one has a swim bar & slide with some private pools- not a laid back vibe but lots of fun – Baldi Hot Springs- lively and good for families $36 person- EcoThermal Hot Spring- more laid back and romantic – smaller hot spring – $40 person- kids are allowed – there are a lot more and this travel blog lists them all – we did Los Lagos hot spring and took an Uber there and back for $4 each way- we also did the free hot springs next to Tabacon- which was amazing- hot spring river for the win!

Bogarín Trail- sloths!!!!!! So there are two companies that take you on the Bogarin trail- it’s about $30 each to walk without a guide and $50 for a guide- they are soooo challenging to spot without a guide- highly recommend a guide- we saw many sloths- even two moms with their babies – but only one male sloth was moving- which was magical to see- we also saw the Jesus Christ lizard, frogs, bats, ants etc

Mistico Arenal Hanging Bridges Park- we booked a tour for $60 each- which included transportation & guide- we went to Arenal Hanging Bridges and El Chollin – which is the hot spring river!! It was about 2 hours walking through the park and over 7 suspension bridges – your guide helps you spot sloths, monkeys, bats, birds, etc- so much life in Costa Rica- you also get a great view of Arenal Volcano from where you begin and end your walk – wear good shoes! If coming on your own you must make reservations in advance

Dominical (March 2023) this is a small surf beach town- my sister lives here and it’s magical- her home is literally in the jungle- monkeys, toucans, hummingbirds etc at her home- lots of surfing and amazing sunsets here- the food was awesome as well- we loved la junta for jerk chicken tacos and chicken wings – fuego for a cocktail- we also went to Nauyaca waterfall- it’s an hour hike in and out – or you can pay $30 each person for a ride in and out- it’s also $10 a person for the waterfall – there is no Uber here to get around- but they do have red taxi cabs

Santa Teresa- (April 2016) – this is small beach town in the Nicoya Peninsula- which is a dry part of Costa Rica and a very popular area- you can either fly in or take a shuttle and ferry over to the Nicoya Peninsula- I went to a 5 day yoga retreat here- the sunsets every evening on the beach was beautiful- and we rented bikes to explore the town- I also did some surfing for the first time!