Hello travel lovers!
I am back to my tropical home, Haïti. Being in Costa Rica for a week has been so great! I’ve had the chance to visit 4 different cities in a week! I sure didn’t waste my time huh. I got to see and experience many things and my trip was long enough to do a lot and short enough to leave me wanting more. Overall it was perfect! As much as I was happy to eb traveling, I was very happy to come home to my other half who had just come back a few days ago from his trip to Europe. I think the travel bug bit him pretty hard too! My dream came true 😉 I know some of you have questions about things to do in Costa Rica and I am more than happy to present you a quick guide so you can have some tips if you are ever planning on flying to Costa Rica soon. If I could define Costa Rica in one word, it would definitely be GREEN. The country is covered by 52% of greenNess, how amazing is that?! Nature is litterally everywhere. Even people with small means, who don’t have a lot of place in their homes, reserve a green spot for a tree or plants. This is just their way of living: Green and pure. As they always say, PURA VIDA!
1- Visit San José
Half a day is enough to visit San José. You can go there and take a walk, do some wandering, take pictures, eat ice cream, buy some fruits, souvenirs and visit the parks and museums. I personally love to photograph people so this is what my walk through the city would mostly consisted of.
2- Day trip to La Fortuna
La Fortuna is about 3-4 hours away from Heredia, which is where I was based in Costa Rica. I took a whole day to visit La fortuna. Since my friend knew a taxi driver, she asked him to be my guide for the day. So we roadtriped to La Fortuna.
We stopped on the road so I could stare at the green landscape. Breathed some fresh air and enjoyed every single moment.
Saw the Arenal Volcano. However, at first, it was too cloudy to see the top so it just looked like a big mountain. But on our way back home, I could see it from a distance and it looked gorgeous!
In La fortuna, I also visited the Rio Celeste but not the actual waterfall. I swam in the river below the bridge and it was great..and totally free! Apparently, since 8 years, they don’t let groups swim in the pool beneath the waterfall anymore because of some accident that happened back then. However, I notice that many people who go alone and not in an organized tour go and swim at their own risks. When the guy told me people couldn’t swim anymore, I decided to go to the river under the bridge because there was no way I came all the way here just to ‘see’ the light blue water. If you are ever in the area, I suggest going in your own group so you can swim in the waterfall pool but don’t take any big risks. Stay near the border and enjoy the light blue water. It can be accessed by walking through the park.
3- Stay at Vista Serena Hostel in Manuel Antonio
This…is a MUST. I chose this hostel because it had the most positive reviews but boy were they right! Many other travelers left their hostels to como to Vista Serena. I would liek to believe I made the best choice. Read more about this hostel Here
Ziplining was great. 2-3 hours of adventure for $65. However, if you have time, do it in MonteVerde, that’s where they have the longest zipline in Central America. My experience was good except that I forget my Gopro Sim card, so no videos…just memories in my head and that’s just fine!
5- A walk in the National Park.
Th rainforest can be accessed from Manuel Antonio beach. A guy with a board saying National park —> will whow you the way. The entrance cots $16 to go on your own and $20 with a guide. I highly suggest you go on your own. Not only do you save money but it is very easy to find your way. From the park, you can access the beach, a waterfall and see various animals like colorful crabs, birds and even snakes (glad I didn’t see any snakes)
6- Eat pizza at El Wagon
El wagon won the best pizza award in 2012. Some girls I met during my stay encouraged me to get one and so we did. The pizza is well cooked on a thin crust. Their fruit smooties are simply amazing. El avion is also a well known place but I just saw it from the outside.
I booked it on the beach. Don’t do it from your hostel because they charge more and you won’t be able to negocitate. I managed to get a tour for $55 when the initial price was about $75. This was my first time ever doing the parasail and I loved it! I was so high that it seemed like time stopped. I couldn’t hear any noise. I was just up in the air looking at the mountains from afar and dangling my feet above the ocean. People were so small they looked like little points and I felt a feeling of peace and serenity. If this is what flying feels like, I want to do it all the time!
8-Enjoy the Manuel Antonio beach
Manuel Antonio beach is paradise for food lovers for it has many restaurants along the sidewalk, many beach activities such as banana boats, parasailing, surfing and more. It is a great spot to simply chill, collect colorful rocks, have some beer, eat and just spend the day.
9-Enjoy the wildlife
There are many parks you can visit where you will get to see animals
10- Pura Vida!
I always thought that Pura Vida was simply a sentence used to attract people to Costa Rica. More than that, it is there state of mind! They answer this to everything. The thing is to be happy, to breathe life and enjoy it to the fullest. So, whatever you decide to do in Costa Rica, always remember, Pura Vida!
A travel lover