Costa Rica

Costa Rica customer reviews

We are very proud of the feedback that we get from our trips and are pleased to share reviews from past travellers. These are kept as up to date as possible. Please have a read through to get a real sense of the kind of experience that you might have on a family trip to Costa Rica.

Costa Rica customer reviews - family on boat with teenage kids

Bennett Family (with children aged 7 & 9)

Travelled Summer 2018
Hi Liddy – We had a great time thank you. Meet and greet was great (although it would have been good to know the name of the local agent as I was looking for Stubborn Mule) you probably told us but I missed that. Everything was super smooth thank you – very well organized and communicated… all the tours and guides were amazing, knowledgeable and good value. Highlights for the girls – zip wiring, tubing, hot springs and all the animals…. i.e. everything.

Stenner Family (with children aged 12 & 13)

Travelled Summer 2018
We had a wonderful time in Costa Rica. It has been brilliant to hear the children chattering away to friends and family about it. To hear their perspective but also to know that everything we hoped for from this family holiday became their reality. We stayed in some lovely accommodation – our favourite was probably casitas Tenorio – because of the ethos and the setting. We really enjoyed our Fortuna hotel too and the activities were great…. We had a wonderful time in Tortuguero. The hotel was nice. The veggie food offering was unimpressive but we got by! To see the turtles was magical. We got to see four laying eggs on one night. The kids were wowed.

Scammell Family (with children aged 7 & 10)

Travelled Summer 2018
Hi Liddy – the trip was amazing. The best bits were:
1. the zip lining
2. the resort on the river
3. seeing the turtle lay her eggs in the beach with my daughter
4. having the car made things so easy!

Things that we’d change:

1. not having the car for the second leg

2. I don’t think we realised how remote and truly basic the second hotel was but actually once we got into watching the birds it was amazing!

Hubbard Family (with children aged 14 & 21)

Travelled Summer 2018
We had a lovely holiday despite the amount of rain! The highlights of our holiday were Isla Chiquita, particularly the bioluminescent tour but not the snorkelling as the water is not clear enough. We loved our hotel in Bijagua, we enjoyed the tubing and the guide for the tubing took us horse riding in the river and to a farm to milk the cows, which was amazing!

We enjoyed the thermals at La Fortuna and were exhilarated by the white water rafting.  We were told the wrong time for the Sky Adventures tour, but luckily they were able to fit us in.  We loved the rainforest walk and the zip lining- although it did get quite scary when the lightning hit our cable!

We enjoyed Sarapiquis and the chocolate tour but the torrential rain stopped our night hike… We were unlucky with the weather in Puerto Viejo, we spent two nights in the Cristal House but upgraded to the Beach house, which we loved! I loved the yoga. We also loved the sloth sanctuary and the nightlife in Puerto Viejo…

We did love our holiday, it was a real adventure and we did love driving ourselves.

Richardson (two adults)

Travelled March 2018
Hi Charlotte – the trip was fantastic thanks, we loved Costa Rica and the itinerary you put together was perfect. A couple of days at each location was just about right, and 4 days at the end by the beach was a fitting end. It is difficult to pick highlights because everything was excellent.

We went to Manual Antonia first and the National Park was great, but it was also nice to get a bit of beach (and sun) in early, which set the trip up nicely. The Costa Verde hotel was fantastic (in fact all the hotels were excellent and exceeded our expectations), but the Costa Verde hotel was in a perfect location to be able to walk to the beach.

The second location we went to was Monte Verde where we enjoyed the zip wiring and cloud forest, (although unfortunately there was no cloud that day). We did see sloths, amongst many other species; in fact we saw lots of animals the whole trip. The Trapp Family Lodge was also very nice, it was quite chilly in Monte Verde and we were pleased we packed a fleece! That particular drive up to Monte Verde from the main highway was brutal even for the 4 wheel drive, you definitely need a decent off terrain vehicle as the roads can be are quite atrocious. We did tend to find that the journeys took a fair bit longer than we thought they might.

The Sky Adventures day was fun – it was a full day and you don’t actually finish until after 1600hrs. We saw plenty of howler monkeys and even some sloths; in fact we saw sloths at every location, less Nosara. The zip-lines were fun, and very safe. One advice is to try and get to the front of the zip-line group as we had 50 in ours, so there could have been a lot of waiting around.

The drive around Arenal Lake to La Fortuna was very picturesque, and we fitted in a hot springs spa afternoon when we arrived. In hindsight we probably should have gone to the La Fortuna waterfall as well, although the heavens did open that afternoon! The bungalow at Lomas del Volcan was nice. The white water rafting experience was fantastic. I think Tracey was a bit apprehensive before hand, but the group were very professional. This excursion also lasted a full day and included a trip around an Eco farm and afternoon lunch which I don’t think we were expecting.

Our final four days were spent at Nosara at the Lagarta Lodge which was an absolutely fantastic hotel…..it had a great pool! We loved it in Nosara, the whole area was stunning and there were several beaches you could walk to. The surfing area at Guiones Beach was quite lively in the evenings, and the La Luna restaurant on the Pelada Beach is highly recommended.

We finished (and started) in San Jose at the Buena Vista Hotel. The hotel was nice and a perfect place if you have to overnight because of your flights. But we didn’t really do much during our two nights there.

So all in all it was a fantastic trip. We have recommended Costa Rica and yourselves to all our friends.

Grigg Family (with children aged 5 and 7)

Travelled Easter 2018
Dear Liddy – The trip was superb, we all had such a wonderful time… We will never forget our brilliant Costa Rican holiday! Here is a quick account and some photos of our trip.

Villa San Ignacio was a good place to start the trip and after such a long flight we were deeply grateful that it wasn’t too far from the airport. it was great that all the connections worked and there was a driver waiting for us at the airport – very seamless. The hotel itself was friendly and accommodating.

The trip to La Paz waterfalls was lovely and a great way to start the holiday proper. it is a lovely place and wonderful to see hummingbirds, frogs and butterflies in such an amazing environment (and take a first seek at a sloth!).

The car was perfect for our needs and a comfortable reliable drive. When we got to Costa Verde – it had been a longer drive than expected but all without hiccup and without getting swallowed by the crocs at Tacorles –  we couldn’t believe the amazing surroundings. We had a really magical time here amongst the rainforest, with the beach so near, monkeys in the surroundings, amazing views from the breakfast, (and of course the random discarded aeroplanes…). It was by far our favourite hotel, I don’t think I’ll forget it in a hurry.

Manuel Antonio park was amazing. We opted for a tour guide in the end which slowed our trip down a bit but was well worth it – as they pointed out things that we just wouldn’t have noticed otherwise.

Casa Luna was an amazing location, but was probably our least favourite hotel. There was something a bit lacking about the service there in terms of the food and service – we found the menu and breakfast a bit tired and the room the least enjoyable of the four places we stayed. The pool and jacuzzis were brilliant – as was the trail in the grounds – we had a brilliant experience trekking it as the heavens opened –  and the location was superb.

Some of our favourite day trips were from here – the zip lining at Eco-glide was a truly memorable experience and we were so glad we were able to find one that B could take part in because we all loved it! The Tarzan swing was scary but we all braved it! We visited the Eco-termales hot springs which was a bit pricey but a brilliant experience. And the rafting day trip was fantastic with a really great tour company and very friendly hosts in the family that we visited. In addition, we toured the chocolate plantation at the next door rainforest chocolate place. Very educational and yummy chocolate.

Final stop was Villas Kalimba. You weren’t wrong about the amazing food that Roberto cooks. Wow. such a culinary treat and welcome break from Costa Rican cuisine or pizza! Kalimba has such a wonderful family vibe and it was like staying with grandparents! Roberto and team made us feel so at home, and with such beautiful beaches at Samara – a brilliant and relaxing conclusion to a wonderful trip!

We had a three hour delay in Toronto on the way back because of unseasonal snow blizzards! but other than that the whole trip sailed by far too quickly and we miss it all already!

Thank you to Stubborn Mule for arranging the experience of a lifetime for our family. We will never forget our brilliant Costa Rican holiday!

Atkins Family (with children aged 12, 17 and 18)

Travelled Summer 2017
Dear Liddy – We returned safely yesterday from the most wonderful trip to Costa Rica. Every stop was different, exciting and packed with wonderful adventures. Thank you to your & your team for putting together such a fantastic itinerary.

Thank you especially for organising the various tours – these were all brilliant.  In their different ways the whale watching (we saw a baby humpback!), the raft trip (loads and loads of animals) and Sky Adventures (a brilliant tour guide and great adrenaline rush) were all real highlights.  For the second and third of these we ended up with another family who were also customers of yours which was fun.   I would definitely recommend all three of these trips to anyone else going. We’re also really grateful for your recommendations as I’m not sure we would have found these ourselves.

Logistically things worked really well.  Our driver for the first week or so was great although think it was good I could speak some Spanish. With hindsight we could have hired a car although not sure how we’d have done the Tortuguero section of the trip.  Interbus also worked really well – no issues at all.  Selfishly it was great not having to drive at all!

In terms of the different places we stayed we would 100% recommend Rafikis beach camp and Casa Luna in La Fortuna (although we didn’t really eat there as felt a bit ‘corporate’ and there were so many options in the town).  We would also definitely recommend Playa Negra guesthouse in Cahuita (the place we booked direct) – fantastic place to stay and wonderful owners / hosts, who took us out on tours of the national park and the area. I know you prefer Puerto Viejo and we did go there one day, but Cahuita was really great for us.

I’ve got mixed views about the whole Tortuguero element of our trip.  The Aninga Lodge itself was wonderful – in terms of the cabins, the pool and facilities and the staff – and we loved the tours of the canals (even if the actual turtle watching was something of an anticlimax). But we did feel a bit like we were on a package holiday and were not too impressed with the guides.  It wasn’t so much the whole getting in and out by bus and boat (which was fun even if a bit painfully inefficient in terms of the transfer at the port!), but the meals at the restaurant in Guapiles, the way you had to follow their exact time schedules and the guides who at times appeared somewhat disinterested were all very different to what we experienced anywhere else in Costa Rica.  Maybe this just showed us we are not great at package holidays or being told what to do!!

Villas Gaia was a good place to stay (very friendly staff and nice food) but not really at the same level as some of the other places, but we loved the Uvita area – to be honest more so than Manuel Antonio although I think I had over high expectations based on what it was like 20 years ago when there were a lot less people (and probably not helped by the fact it rained a lot when we were exploring the park).

At Cerro Lodge we saw scarlet macaws which were amazing, but the restaurant wasn’t great. E wasn’t taken with the open air bathrooms there!!  Similarly Sarapiquis – whilst interesting to go to did feel like a stopping point rather than somewhere we really wanted to be – probably the only place were we found ourselves looking for something to do to fill time.

The hotel in San Jose was convenient but as expected San Jose wasn’t really the best place we visited!

In terms of recommendations of other places

– Playa Negra in Cahuita – brilliant

– Sobre Las Olas Restaurante in Cahuita (and lots of other good places there too)

– we went to the Paradise hot springs in Arenal – can’t compare it vs all the others but was very quiet and great fun

– we found a fantastic Argentinian  restaurant called Aqui Es very close to the hotel in San Jose.  Great food and fantastic people

– the Jaguar Rescue Centre outside Puerto Viejo is really special – E’s top recommendation for the whole great trip

Loads more we could say – please do let me know if any specific questions, but overall fantastic!  We will definitely recommend you (in fact S gave your details to a friend from school yesterday)

Hetherington Family (with one child aged 11)

Travelled Summer 2017
Hi Liddy – Thank you for all your help and support in organising our time in Costa Rica – we had a fantastic time and a truly memorable holiday.  I think it really was our best one ever! I will have a proper look at photos, and Ellie is definitely planning to enter your competition – we’ve got a lot of sloth photos to sort through this weekend!!!

Thank you especially for organising the various tours – these were all brilliant.  In their different ways the whale watching (we saw a baby humpback!), the raft trip (loads and loads of animals) and Sky Adventures (a brilliant tour guide and great adrenaline rush) were all real highlights.  For the second and third of these we ended up with another family who were also customers of yours which was fun.   I would definitely recommend all three of these trips to anyone else going. We’re also really grateful for your recommendations as I’m not sure we would have found these ourselves.

Logistically things worked really well.  Our driver for the first week or so was great although think it was good I could speak some Spanish. With hindsight we could have hired a car although not sure how we’d have done the Tortuguero section of the trip.  Interbus also worked really well – no issues at all.  Selfishly it was great not having to drive at all!

In terms of the different places we stayed we would 100% recommend Rafikis beach camp and Casa Luna in La Fortuna (although we didn’t really eat there as felt a bit ‘corporate’ and there were so many options in the town).  We would also definitely recommend Playa Negra guesthouse in Cahuita (the place we booked direct) – fantastic place to stay and wonderful owners / hosts, who took us out on tours of the national park and the area. I know you prefer Puerto Viejo and we did go there one day, but Cahuita was really great for us.

I’ve got mixed views about the whole Tortuguero element of our trip.  The Aninga Lodge itself was wonderful – in terms of the cabins, the pool and facilities and the staff – and we loved the tours of the canals (even if the actual turtle watching was something of an anticlimax). But we did feel a bit like we were on a package holiday and were not too impressed with the guides.  It wasn’t so much the whole getting in and out by bus and boat (which was fun even if a bit painfully inefficient in terms of the transfer at the port!), but the meals at the restaurant in Guapiles, the way you had to follow their exact time schedules and the guides who at times appeared somewhat disinterested were all very different to what we experienced anywhere else in Costa Rica.  Maybe this just showed us we are not great at package holidays or being told what to do!!

Villas Gaia was a good place to stay (very friendly staff and nice food) but not really at the same level as some of the other places, but we loved the Uvita area – to be honest more so than Manuel Antonio although I think I had over high expectations based on what it was like 20 years ago when there were a lot less people (and probably not helped by the fact it rained a lot when we were exploring the park).

At Cerro Lodge we saw scarlet macaws which were amazing, but the restaurant wasn’t great. E wasn’t taken with the open air bathrooms there!!  Similarly Sarapiquis – whilst interesting to go to did feel like a stopping point rather than somewhere we really wanted to be – probably the only place were we found ourselves looking for something to do to fill time.

The hotel in San Jose was convenient but as expected San Jose wasn’t really the best place we visited!

In terms of recommendations of other places

– Playa Negra in Cahuita – brilliant

– Sobre Las Olas Restaurante in Cahuita (and lots of other good places there too)

– we went to the Paradise hot springs in Arenal – can’t compare it vs all the others but was very quiet and great fun

– we found a fantastic Argentinian  restaurant called Aqui Es very close to the hotel in San Jose.  Great food and fantastic people

– the Jaguar Rescue Centre outside Puerto Viejo is really special – E’s top recommendation for the whole great trip

Loads more we could say – please do let me know if any specific questions, but overall fantastic!  We will definitely recommend you (in fact S gave your details to a friend from school yesterday)

Hayes Family (with kids aged 5, 7 and 9)

Travelled Summer 2017
Just wanted to let you know that we are home from our Costa Rican adventure safe and sound. We had a fantastic time and everything worked out really well. Thanks so much for your help in organising such a superb trip!

There are a few reflections or hints that we felt we picked up along the way, which might be helpful to share with fellow travellers.

Driving. The driving was fine and we liked the freedom that it gave us. The hire care was great, automatic definitely a massive help and sat nav essential, which was for the most part very accurate. Good to get your driving done as early in the day as possible to avoid driving in heavy rains which can be tricky. We also tried to do as little as possible at night – poorly lit roads, huge potholes, and oncoming bikes with no lights, possibly carrying a couple of people or even a large dog on one occasion. We opted to pay the full cover insuance. The basic insurance had an excess of $1500 for damage to your car and $600 for damage to another vehicle. The top insurance was an additional $295. Money well spent for peace of mind during our trip we thought.

Manuel Antonio. Costa Verde was a really fun place to stay with some interesting and tasty restaurants – which really did have as many monkeys as people! We weren’t quite prepared for Manuel Antonio park – as you drive up with about 500m to the park you are shepherded off the road  – and immediately set upon for parking fees and money for a private guide. After the very swanky La Paz waterfall this was a bit of a shock. Our guide led us through a few back alleys and dirty streets on our way in to the park and we began to feel pretty uneasy and wondering if we were walking into some kind of trouble. Once inside however we soon realised that our guides knowledge, telescope and skill at spotting the wildlife were indispensable. It was $90 to have the guide with just our family for a couple of hours, and after what had initially seemed a bit unsettling turned out to be a great day and money well spent.

Ziplining. Both the guided walk and zip lining were excellent. The zip lining was very professional, and we felt well-looked after and safe throughout. Very good with the kids, and they said they would actually have been happy to take kids from as young as 4 years.

Treehouses. Was a really fun place to stay, homely, welcoming and with a great breakfast. The night walk here was excellent. On balance however as there is so much cool stuff to do in the area, it may be better to stay somewhere a bit more low budget close to the action and spend any saving on an additional activity. It was probably a bit over priced. The raft tour that day was wonderful, not too long and great to stop off at the traditional farm.

Tabacon Spa. We stumbled across this after our lovely morning rafting on the river. We were keen to get the geothermal experience. We pitched up pretty scruffy, with our swimmers -expecting to pay a modest fee for a swim in some naturally heated warm water. Turned out it was a 5-star resort with beautiful gardens and numerous pools with waterfalls, and also a slide which the kids really enjoyed. For the family it was $238 for the afternoon, which included an all you can eat buffet which was superb. Price was a bit of a shock but for a decadent once-in-a-life time experience, it was worth it and we all have great memories of our afternoon there – including seeing a Jesus Christ lizard skipping across the top of a waterfall!

Finca Sura. Great wee place to stay full of character and charm. No English spoken here so be prepared, we felt we really let ourselves down with our lack of Spanish. It doesn’t come up on the sat nav. We took some screen shots of the area on Google maps when we had Wifi. This was invaluable. It’s the same turn off as ‘Chilamatic Rainforest Eco Retreat’ which was on the sat nav – so putting that in might be your best bet.

Turtles. This is definitely one place where we feel there should have been a bit more direction. We were to meet our connecting bus at a restaurant called El Cebo in a town called Guapiles. Again nothing coming up on the sat nav and Guapiles turned out to be a pretty big place. When we finally found it (almost an hour late) it was only because our guide saw us from the side of the road and waved us down. Not only is the restaurant not in the sat nav, it has no sign and is hidden about 100m behind large green gates and a lot of foliage?! Felt pretty bad about making the walk of shame down the bus past all the other tourists we had kept waiting and had to endure a slow hand clap as the bus finally got moving! Tip: Put the Santa Clara Cervicentro (petrol station) into the sat nav. It is set back from the road on the right about 300m beyond that, large green gate. After this minor stress – hotel, pools and activities were great. With regards the turtles, you just have to make a choice and take your chance. We had the earlier 8-10pm slot and it was still the latest night of our hols by far. It was a quiet evening for turtles on the beach that night and kids did well hanging about in the dunes for an hour. It looked like we might be out of luck and then just as time was running out we got about 1 minute with a turtle and saw the eggs being laid. All considered we were glad to have been able to have had the experience.

La Diosa. On first appearances looked a bit shabby compared to some of the other hotels but it was actually a lovely quiet spot for relaxing, great breakfasts and having a pool to ourselves. We would really recommend the pizza restaurant just down from the police station beside the beach in Cahuita. The rip tides throughout Costa Rica were very strong but Punta Uva was a super beach with waves that were great fun without feeling dangerous and no rips. Nothing sign posted and may need to ask locals to get the best access. We did both the Jaguar Rescue Santuary and the Sloth Rescue Santuary. The Jaguar centre was better by far, definitely worth doing if in that area.

The drive back to San Jose took about 3 hours and then almost as long again to get from one side of the city to the other! If there was a way of by passing the city to get back to Villa san Ignacio that would be worth finding out.

Hopefully some of this might be of some use to some of your other clients.

We thought Costa Rica was a great destination! The wildlife super abundant and we probably saw more in some of the grounds of the hotels than in the national parks. The climate was great with sunny mornings and then the excitement of tropical storms in the evenings. Temperature just perfect for being out and about. It was also a great time to go as nothing felt too crowded, often in the hotels we had the pools to ourselves and ample opportunity to ask questions to our guides. So thanks again for your help and enthusiasm for our trip.

Laird Family (with children aged 11 and 17)

Travelled Summer 2017
Hi Liddy – We just got back today and have to say had the most wonderful holiday ever. The transfers, hotels, trips were amazing and we all loved every minute. Thanks for your recommendations and putting the itinerary together for us. It truly was a holiday of a life time but we all want more. We loved seeing the animals, had a brilliant time rafting and loved the Sky Adventure tour/zip line at Monteverde too. We did a night walk and the hot springs too. Utterly amazing – a big thank you from all of us. Thanks again, will be in touch about next year!

Family N (with children aged 12 and 14)

Travelled Summer 2017
Hi Kelly – We had a great time, thank you, and the various places we visited were fantastic. Having a car really made a difference – driving is relatively easy and gives real flexibility around things like finding launderettes to do service washes, and eating in places other than your hotel.

We could write reams of comment about iguanas, monkeys, snakes, sunsets, butterflies… but more on the minor changes that we would suggest below:

1) Arrival – we were quite jet-lagged, and were not capable of much on both the first day. We had been booked to see the volcano, but didn’t actually happen. I don’t think that we would have been able to do this with the kids, as they were exhausted. Other families might do better, but it would have been ambitious for a first day. Preferably day one just to travel to your first destination, such as Tortuguero.

2) Costa Rica is fantastic – San Jose, not so much – there is v little to do other than visit the former prison complex. Would recommend not spending any time there if that works for people’s itineraries.

3) One night stays – this didn’t really add much value – white water rafting was good, but there are many other places you can do this in CR, and a single night stay just meant more packing / unpacking.

4) Arenal – great place to go, canyoneering was a fantastic activity, would really recommend doing. We did this with Mistico. The horse riding included a trip to a waterfall – worth going to that even if not going horse riding.

5) Monteverde – drive there is genuinely challenging – worth checking with people how comfortable they are with this. We were ok, but ended up with a puncture, and certain times felt that it was the steepest roads we had ever driven up…

Worth booking the night hike on the second night there, rather than the first, as it was slightly tight for time. Point out that it is possible/likely to rain the whole time. It rained for our entire two-hour hike, which I think is quite normal, and I don’t think we’d have chosen to do it if we’d realised.

Sky bridges / zip wires were great. I suggest you recommend to people they do the zip wire, or offer it as an option, rather than wait for people to discover that the zip wire exists.

6) Manuel Antonio
Hotel was great – really comfortable room, and being able to cook basic meals / having a fridge made a significant difference cost wise. Could consider suggesting that people might want to make their own breakfast rather than pay (how much?) for the hotel’s breakfast. It was nice though 🙂

Activities – additionally we enjoyed surfing lessons, and did paddle boarding in the mangroves – this was a great opportunity to spot wildlife.

Thank you again!

Healy Family (with children aged 8, 13 and 15)

Travelled Christmas 2016/7
Our first day relaxing in San Jose was a lovely introduction to the country.  The local guide, Felipe came to our hotel to welcome us and give us our full travel itinerary for the 2 weeks.  He offered to take us into San Jose and show us around.  We took a local bus with Felipe giving us useful insights into the city and the people.  We walked around the local clothes and food markets and had our first taste of Costa Rican coffee !  We then went to the Museo De Los Ninos which was great fun – lots of varied exhibits and art installation and hands on activities particularly good for the youngest – but strangely enjoyed by the teenagers too !  

We met our driver Pablo early the next morning and headed off in a comfy minibus to Arenal National Park.  It’s a beautiful drive and we arrived in time for lunch in La Fortuna.  As he did throughout his time with us – Pablo recommended a great local restaurant the Rainforest Cafe for lunch and we had our first Casado (local dish with rice, beans).  The hotel Lomas De Volcan was fabulous.  We had two lodges which were very spacious and nicely furnished, small terraces and in beautiful landscaped gardens.  Weather wasn’t great during some of our time there but there was a nice pool and hot tub that was popular !  We had an evening walk in the rainforest and saw poisonous frogs, rare sighting of a sloth and lots of other beasties.  We walked a beautiful trail through the national park to the lava grounds of the volcano with far reaching views.  A visit to the volcanic hot springs for the children was very popular – 20 different pools and one so hot you could barely get in without jumping out again.  There was various water slides and a swim up bar !  The safari float was a highlight of the trip.  We had a very knowledgable guide – Steve – who took us on a safari tour down the river in an inflatable dinghy – we saw iguanas, monkeys, alligators !  To top it all off we had an amazing morning zip wiring with Go Adventure – great company and awesome fun.  Finale was an abseil down from a height that gave me palpitations – for myself never mind our 8 year old – who of course went down without blinking….

We moved on with our adventure to the Cloud Forests in Monteverde saying at the Cloud Forest Lodge – super hotel.  The canopy walks through the Rainforest were incredible – we learned that it really does rain a lot in the rainforests !  We also visited a local snake farm in Santa Elena which was fascinating and had a vast range of snakes, turtles, spiders…. When we visited the Childrens Eternal Rainforest this trumped all wildlife throughout the trip when on our walk with another encylopaedic guide – we actually saw a tarantula in it’s burrow – unusual to see during the day, but the local guide knew where to look.  We got some great photographs – but I was very wary of burrows on our walk afte that sighting !

The last stage of our trip was the beach !  We stayed at a fairly remote resort called the Tango Mar near Tambor on the Peninsula of Nicoya.  It was a beautiful journey there on the ferry from the mainland and the hotel was a revelation.  We had beautiful accomodation with sea views and steps down onto an empty beach.  We were blessed with incredible sunshine for five days over Christmas.  The boys played golf, we all played tennis and I had a facial and massage.  We lazed by the pool and had the odd cheeky cocktail at the swim up bar.  Children were on the milkshakes !  There were lots of trips available through the hotel – but this was our chill out time after all the activities of the first week and we used it well.  We came back with enviable tans !

We could not recommend Costa Rica enough to people wanting a real adventure – we saw and did so much it seems hardly possible looking back – but we did it.  The children were blown away by everything.  It’s rare to think a holiday can exceed all expecations but this one really did.

Thanks again for all your organisation and advice Libby – it was spot on.  I haven’t told the family yet – but I am already thinking about 2018 for our next adventure…..

Kohler Family (with two children aged 10 and 13)

Travelled Summer 2016
Many thanks for arranging a fantastic holiday. It was a well spaced out and enjoyable holiday. We would like to make special mention of Pablo our driver who was most thoughtful, great fun and very reliable. Please extend our thanks to him.

Burton Family (with three kids aged 6, 12 and 14)

Travelled Easter 2016
We had a wonderful time in Costa Rica, thanks so much for all of your help with the planning. It was wonderful to be scooped up by Kelly during the planning process as we had got completely stuck in trying to work out where to go and just didn’t know where to start. I can’t tell you the relief that we all felt when Kelly took charge and started to suggest how best to go about planning the whole thing! The suggestions were all spot on.

We loved Arenal and all of the activities here. H particularly enjoyed walking over the lava fields and has been boasting about this to anyone who will listen. The girls loved the horse ride here as well and the views were amazing.

Monteverde was very impressive and although it rained a bit when we were there we loved the zip wire. The Belmar Lodge was AMAZING, far swankier than the usual places that we stay. Lovely staff too, who arranged a birthday cake for M, which was greatly appreciated.

The beach was also wonderful. We loved Manuel Antonio – this was definitely the right choice for our family and we loved the kayaking and the walks in the park. Saw masses of wildlife each day, which was great.

Thanks so much for everything. We are looking at Thailand for next Easter so will be in touch again soon!

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