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Costa Rica holiday ideas experiences accommodation places to go when to visit costa-rica map reviews

Holiday review by Joanne O'Hara

Name:
Date of trip: 17/10/2016
Number of people: 2
Country: Costa Rica

Overall level of Satisfaction

 
Tribes Overall: "I'd always wanted to visit Costa Rica, mainly to see the wildlife, and thought my birthday in October was the perfect excuse to go. Although it is the rainy season on the Pacific side of the country, the Caribbean area (where we stayed) was hot, hot, hot! It was an amazing experience, which has given me a taste for more. "
 
Tribes Service: "Once I decided on our destination, I did an internet search for a specialist in this area. I chose Tribes due to the positive feedback from their clients. I emailed my requirements and received a response the same day. My consultant was extremely efficient and had our itinerary organised by the following day. With a couple of tweaks we were all booked up within a few days. He booked hotels and excursions that suited us and our requirements. He also detailed the process for going through US customs whilst we were in transit. This was really helpful as we haven't traveled long haul for about 10 years and needed all the help we could get! The only downside was that although he booked our vegetarian meals on the flights he didn't book the seats and I'd assumed that would have been done. It was only due to my husband asking the question that I found out we needed to do this ourselves and was unable to get two standard seats together by that time. We ended up paying extra to get two seats next to each other for all four flights, which added quite a bit to the overall cost of the holiday."
 
Guides: "From meeting us at the airport to our transfer to our final destination, the guides/drivers were impeccable and always on time. Alex, who drove us from San Jose to Puerto Viejo, a five hour drive which included a stop for lunch, was amazing. His knowledge and love of his country was astounding. From politics to religion, animals to plants, there wasn't anything he didn't know and his command of the English language is excellent. He was also an extremely good driver! Other guides and drivers also surpassed themselves and made us feel very welcome and safe."
 
Social & Environmental Responsibility: "There were no 'brand' hotels in the area. Most hotels, lodges, restaurants, cafes and excursions are run by local people, keeping the local economy buoyant. There are very strict rules with regards to wildlife. You can not touch the animals (even in rescue centres), there are really strict rules when snorkeling on the coral reef, and no 'photo opportunities' with the wildlife."

Accommodation

 
Le Cameleon Boutique Hotel
The staff at the hotel couldn't have been more friendly and helpful. The breakfasts were substantial and tasty and evening meals good also. They have boardwalks to get from your room to all areas of the hotel so it's as if you are living in the rainforest. Beautiful birds and butterflies flit through the trees and visit the pool and the howler monkeys put in a good chorus some mornings. Our room was always clean with the towels, bed cushions, wall prints changed daily to match the colour of the staff's uniforms, which was a nice touch.

Our Memories

"Our guide from San Jose to our hotel in Puerto Viejo was amazing. He was such a wonderful introduction to the country. The staff at our hotel were fantastic and all spoke English (which helped as my Spanish is pretty poor!). Puerto Viejo has such a laid back vibe with some amazing places to eat. The food was delicious and really fresh. The fresh fruit drinks were perfect in temperatures averaging 30c. The guided walk through the rain forest was everything you could wish for if you love wildlife. To see monkeys, sloths, toucans, iguanas etc was just perfect."

customer rating

5/5 from 42 reviews

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facts and information

Time: GMT -6

Flight time: The flying time is about 12 hours from the UK. There are now direct flights from the UK using British Airways. We work with all the major airlines and can offer flights from the UK or via the USA, Panama or a European hub. With the connection times you are looking at around 15 or 16 hours.

Language: Spanish is the official language. English is widely spoken throughout Costa Rica

Visas: Not required for British travellers. Other nationalities should obtain advice from their embassy.

Health: There are no compulsory vaccinations.

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