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Initial itinerary help please...

Which Arenal Volcano National Park hotels are on sale?
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posts: 446
reviews: 20
Initial itinerary help please...

My husband and I plan on going to Costa Rica in mid November (maybe with another couple). We have a choice of flying in and out of Liberia for 7 to 9 days. We want a mix of tropical adventure and beach. Arenal is definitely on our list. We are thinking of either Arenal 4 days, Monteverde 2 days, Tamarindo (or other beach area) for 3 days. Or skip Monteverde and do Arenal for 4 days and beach for 3 days. I'm worried that whatever we can see and do in Arenal will be similar in Monteverde. I prefer to stick to under 3 hours for our transport time between places. Please share your thoughts.

Chicago, Illinois
Destination Expert
for Costa Rica
posts: 5,177
reviews: 20
1. Re: Initial itinerary help please...

I like your 2nd option better as it greatly reduces travel time (along with time wasted checking in and out of hotels for short stays). Two problems: the drive time from most Guanacaste beaches to Arenal is roughly 4 hours - not under 3 hours. Once you pick a beach you can check travel time at www.yourtravelmap.com Mid-November is still rainy season so be prepared for some rain that time of year. Noirthern Guancaste beaches get less rain than the rest of the country so that's a good start but just be prepared for a little rain.

Charlotte, North...
posts: 57
reviews: 22
2. Re: Initial itinerary help please...

When I went to Costa Rica, We went San Jose (just for airport, then got out ASAP), Arenal for 2 days, Monteverde (Santa Elana) for 2 days, and Nosara for 2 days. There is plenty f different stuff to do in Arenal and Monteverde, so definitely don't skip one. In Arenal, we used Desafio tour group (which is also on TA) and we had the time of our lives. We went whitewater rafting/canyoneering one day which was the best tour ever! Another day we did a hike to some hot springs, which was good too. In Monteverde, we went ziplining one day and horseback riding another. Both of these were unbelievable, and were all with Desafio.

Atlanta, GA
posts: 307
reviews: 1
3. Re: Initial itinerary help please...

If you've got 9 days, you can easily do 3nts Arenal, 2nts Monteverde and then finish up with 3 nights in Guanacaste. Monteverde is unique and different and the cloud forest is amazing.

posts: 446
reviews: 20
4. Re: Initial itinerary help please...

Will the cloud forest be anything similar to Arenal National Park? I know both offer the same activities (hanging brides, zip lining, etc). I would prefer not to drive that distance for similar scenery. I know wildlife would be different, but my interest is more beautiful scenery.

5. Re: Initial itinerary help please...

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