Costa Rica Planning

To do before the trip

Documents

Before booking any trip, make sure you have your passport and it is not about to expire (more than 6 months). Otherwise, your surf trip will be limited to the drive to and from the airport. Do let this happen to you – Family Denied Entry Into Costa Rica for Short Passport Expiry

Vaccination

CDC recommends vaccinations against typhoid and hepatitis A, and malaria only on Caribbean coast. For Hepatitis-A you need 2 shots with a time difference of 6 months between them (Havrix vacine). After the first you are fine to go.

Information about Costa Rica

Costa Rica map with points of interest

Surf spots

Stars – kayaking regions

Orange – climbing

Green – national parks

Blue – non-kayaking water sports (surfing, snorkeling, diving). Surf reports.

Brown – villages, towns, and places where we might live

Pink – golf courses

Arrival

Arrival to San-Jose in Juan Santamaria International Airport.

Telephone: +506.437.2400

The airport is 16km from San Jose.

There is an departure airport tax of US$27-29 for departing flights. This may be paid in advance at many hotels in San Jose, which can save some time at the airport. It is also possible to pay the tax online.

  • Local or public bus to town (35-minute ride). Fare: ₡535, approximately US$0.99
  • Express or private bus to town
  • Taxi
  • ATMs accepting international cards

South Pacific

December – 31.12. South of Quepos/Dominical,  Uvita in Big Bamboo de Uvita.

A radial tour from Uvita – Manuel Antonio park, said to be “the postcard view of Costa Rica”.

Mt Chirripó – Cerro Chirripó

The entrance to the Chirripó National Park is just beyond the town of San Gerardo De Rivas. Driving to San Gerardo De Rivas takes around 30 minutes from San Isidro de El General. The final 6 km to San Gerardo is on gravel road with fairly steep inclines at parts and a 4×4 car was recommended.

From Uvita to San Isidro de El General is about 1 h and then 30 minutes to San Gerardo De Rivas. Thus I propose to start from Uvita in the early morning in order to be at the park gates before 10 AM. Then track to the Base Camp, sleep there and next day (December, 31st) climb to the top of Mt Chirripó. After go down and sleep closer to the park entrance in Hotel de Montaña El Pelicano.

1.01-2.01 – we are in Hotel de Montaña El Pelicano

Climbing in Cachi

For ones who would like to climb.

2.01-5.01–  we are in Paraiso Orocay Lodge

Volcan Tenorio and Lake Arenal

5.01-9.01 we are at Lake Arenal and stay in Agua Inn Spa. The lake is approximately 30 km long and almost 5 km at its widest point, and it is the largest lake in Costa Rica. Activities: windsurfing, wakeboarding, fishing, kayaking, hiking, biking, bird watching, horseback riding, etc.

“Must visit places” Volcan Tenorio , hot springs,

Rincón de la Vieja National Park

Rincón de la Vieja National Park – seems to have decent volcanic activity, last erupted in 1998, has some fumaroles, boiling mud pits, hot springs, and somehow active volcanito (a little volcano) , Volcan Santa Maria, the highest peak at 6,385 feet (1916 m) no open lava expected though.

9.01-11.01 stay in Rinconcito Lodge.

North Pacific

11.01-13.01 Villa Casa Blanca at Coco Beach in Pacific Ocean.

13.01-17.01 Mamma Rosa Resort at Nosara Beach-Playa Guiones

Things to do in Nosara region

Surfing in Nosara

Climbing in Nosara

Refuge for Wildlife – is a place for the injured, displaced and orphaned wildlife from Nosara and the Nicoya Peninsula region of Costa Rica.

 

 

Other options

Then there are several possibilities:

Tortuguero National Park (Caribbean coast)  – watch for the time, if you go for turtles, they might be not there.

Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve. Areas with poor drainages support swamp forests, while other parts – dissected by deep, expansive gorges – have numerous streams tumbling through, creating rapids, waterfalls and standstill pools. It is, however, not merely the forest and landscape that are so diversified.

Santa Elena Reserve. The reserve is covered by a majestic Cloud Forest, in which you can observe a great variety of plants, Orchids, trees, ferns, heliconias and others.

Pacific coast:

Santa Rosa National Park (Pacific coast). LP says it is most valued for historical heritage for locals rather than nature.

Refugio Nacional de Vida Silvestre Bahía Junquillal – small coastal wildlife refuge, turtles pelicans, mangrove (not checked the season for turtles), nice beaches, swim, snorkeling

Salinas bay – CR top for kitesurfing

Golfo del Papagayo – snorkeling and diving, diving station in Playa del Coco

And others – make your suggestions

 

Summary of our plans at the moment

I will summarize some of the points

24.12-31.12 Uvita in Big Bamboo de Uvita

31.12-01.01 Chirripó National Park

1.01-2.01 –  Hotel de Montaña El Pelicano

2.01-5.01–   Paraiso Orocay Lodge – climbing

5.01-9.01 Lake Arenal stay in Agua Inn Spa

9.01-11.01 Rinconcito Lodge in Rincón de la Vieja National Park

11.01-13.01 Villa Casa Blanca at Coco Beach in Pacific Ocean.

13.01-17.01 Mamma Rosa Resort at Nosara Beach-Playa Guiones

 

Useful links

 

 

In Russian

Центральная Америка, ч.3. Коста-Рика: вулканы, пляжи и многое другое

 

11 Comments

Avatar andrey

Map in English

little map – https://www.google.fr/maps/@10.3365361,-84.5288086,8z/data=!4m2!6m1!1szcZK4zYkfpwY.kvo5cGZ5NxGA?hl=en

Stars – kayaking regions – http://www.selvawhitewater.com/river-sections.html

Orange – climbing

Green -national parks

Blue – non-kayaking water sports,

Brown – villages, towns, and places where we might live

Pink – golf courses

CDC recommends vaccinations against typhoid and hepatitis A, malyaria only on Carribean coast.

For the first week 4 of us (non-kayakers, me Lena, Olesya, Fedor) booked rooms in Uvita, south of Quepos/Dominical (see map)

Avatar andrey

On Hepattitis vacine btw. I checked with a doctor, for Hep-A you need 2 shots with a time difference of 6 months between them (Havrix vacine). After the first you are fine to go.

Avatar andrey

Regarding Santa-Rosa park – LP says it is most valued for historical heritage for locals rather than nature.
About Guanacaste park – I was wrong, it has biological diversity but very restricted as it is more research area.
A radial tour from Uvita – Manuel Antonio park, said to be “the postcard view of Costa Rica”
earlier mentioned park on carribean side – watch for the time, if you go for turtles, they might be not there.
OnThe North-West:

Rincón de la Vieja National Park – seems to have decent volcanic activity, last erupted in 1998, has some fumaroles, boiling mud pits, hot springs, and somehow active volcanito (a little volcano) no open lava expected though.

Refugio Nacional de Vida Silvestre Bahía Junquillal – small coastal wildlife refuge, turtles pelicans, mangrove (not checked the season for turtles), nice beaches, swim, snorkeling

Salinas bay – CR top for kitesurfing

Golfo del Papagayo – snorkeling and diving, diving station in Playa del Coco

Luc asked for diving – I found several places – one station right in Uvita, one in Quepos one in Playa del Coco. in Uvita and Playa del Coco there are local dive tours. From Uvita there tours to Isla del Caño islands, but it is remote, booking-in-advance no anchor drift dives.

All mentioned added on the map

Olesya Olesya

It seems to me that I have managed to book Chirippa for the New Year
Night (31.12-1.01) 🙂 for 8 people (me, Fedor, Sergey, Priscille,
Mariia, Evgenii, Jens and Luc ). I am waiting for confirmation. That
will cost about 120 USD per person for all (park, hotel, food).

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