First let me just start off that we could not have been happier with Crocodile Bay Resort (CBR), their staff, fishing captains and mate, eco tour guides, transportation crew and the entire country of Costa Rica as a whole. It was a fantastic trip and we had no hiccups along the way, and a large part of that was due to the top notch staff. My wife and I wanted an exotic honeymoon in Costa Rica and never being there before we did a lot of research into location throughout the country and resorts. We choose CBR for the fishing, but also for the variety of eco tours they offered. Our US Rep was Larry and he was great in helping us get information to make our decision and once we choose CBR he was equally great in answering questions and getting all of the finances and trip plans secured.
We choose this location, the Osa Peninsula, due to the wildlife, great fishing, and for being “off the beaten path”. There were a lot less tourists here, not because it is not beautiful or worthwhile, but maybe because it not as developed as some of the other known tourist spots.
First we were picked up at the airport and over to the Double Tree Calarai for the overnight before heading to CBR. They were fantastic, pleasant and prompt (even though our flight was a little late). We had a great stay that night, the hotel was very beautiful, and the breakfast buffet that is included is not to be missed. We relaxed that night and unwound from the days travel.
The next morning Jonathan picked us up, and this guy is fantastic. Super friendly and down to earth. He helped us with our Spanish as we were trying t be good guests and speak as much Spanish as we could. Trust me when I say people appreciate you at least attempting their language than to force them to speak English. Anyway, Jonathan got us to the airport for our Nature Air flight and saved us some time later by paying for our departure tax right there. A little trick we would have been oblivious to.
We arrived in Puerto Jimenez and were picked up and taken to the resort just a few minutes away. I know you pay a premium to stay at CRB compared to many other Costa Rican resorts, but to me it was worth it. The rooms were very nice, but I can see how someone might think they would not live up to the US standards for something of the same rate, but I would disagree. They were spacious, well kept, and located all over their beautiful grounds. We were greeted with a Pina Colada type drink and more happy smiling faces. We were shown are room and took a little tour of the facilities. They had graciously left some Champagne in the room as well as complementary Swedish massage certificate for the Spa.
The grounds are beautiful and the bar, gift shop, reception, spa, pool and dining facility are all fantastic. It really leaves you feeling comfortable and at home. The first afternoon we just wanted to relax so we ate an awesome lunch and then headed off to the beach. The beach is a short drive through the country side, and they always had a cooler of beer, soda, water, fresh fruit, etc. They gave us some boogie boards and we relaxed and got pounded by the surf. We also had our first Macaw sighting when about 7 flew into a tree not too far away. They are so cool and we later learned how endangered they are.
Day two was spent fishing with Captain Jonny and Mate David. They were a fun group and really handled out inexperience at sail fishing well and we just had a great time. We ended up raising 12 fish and catching 4. They were great in helping my wife reel her fish in so that I could film or take pictures of her fight. Most fish were about 100 pounds and what an awesome fight. We were the only two people and I felt the standard boat was more than accompanying for the 2 of us. We saw a bunch of turtles floating in the ocean and fish jumping everywhere. We probably could have caught more, but I screwed up on a couple getting used to the gear. Remember the 50+ spf if you’re not used to this kind of sun. We were reapplying like mad, and it paid off. No fun getting sick or burnt to a crisp.
Dinners were gourmet every night. We got to experience the buffet (based on # of guests) and menu options. We had a ton of fresh Mahi Mahi, Wahoo, Tuna and snapper. This is a huge perk for being a fishing resort as you get the freshest meal in town. We couldn’t rave about the food enough.
The remaining time was spent fishing one more time, it was slower, and 6 raised and 2 caught, with 2 lost Rooster fish. My only complaint is toward the Rooster fish for not cooperating with us and letting us catch them, maybe next time. We had the same captain and mate, which we loved, and these guys really do bust their hump to get you fish.
We also got our free Swedish massage, simply put “to die for!!!
We also did the monkey/jungle tour, zip line tour, and sanctuary tour. We did the sanctuary tour first to get a close up look at some of the animals we might see on other tours and to learn something about the animals of the Osa. We saw and fed on spider monkey, Winkie, and got to see a whole slew of other animals they rescued. It’s amazing how much we learned, and think it’s a must do if you are doing some of the tours. The Zip lining wasn’t as scary as I thought it was going to be, but it was so cool to see the primary forest from that vantage point. We did the new tour that has the longer runs and is a bit faster, so I don’t know what the other one is like, but I would recommend this one. Sorry for the lack of remembering the name, but the other one begins with an “M” and offers a night zip line tour. The money tour was very cool in not only being able to see more of the country side and how Costa Ricans live away from the resort, but for all of the wildlife we saw. Howler monkeys, Squirrel monkeys, Macaws, vultures, falcon, spiders, toucans, some rodent thing I forget the name of, and the big blue butterflies.
When we left and went back to San Jose, if you have time I recommend asking Jonathan to set up a tour to the Doka coffee plantation and Poas Volcano. Jonathan had set up the tour and we had the best guide and driver in Marco. What a fun dude and he really showed us around beyond the sites we were after. We had a great day, saw the volcano, enjoyed the coffee tour and picked up a lot of cool souvenirs along the way
I could keep going on and on about this place, but I have to stop sometime. This is a great place and it truly has a found spot in our hearts. The staff could not have been any better and I hope you get a chance to visit this gem someday.
Matt and Carmen
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.