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10 days March 2019 - Lodging suggestions

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10 days March 2019 - Lodging suggestions

We are flying into San Jose for 10 days and seeking advice. We are late 30s, so looking for areas that will have good food, shopping, and a little nightlife/bars, but gone are the days of partying all night. Relaxation, beaches and rainforest excursions are definitely on the agenda. Having read though various descriptions of the different areas of CR, we like the laid back feel of Puerto Viejo, and the mix of tourists and locals and fun at Coco/Jaco Beaches. Having said that, we are open to different areas, or splitting the trip into two places. Also looking for recommendations on lodging. Not into huge hotels, all inclusives, and anything too fancy. Thoughts?

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San Jose
San Jose
San Jose Metro, Costa Rica
Puerto Viejo de Talamanca
Puerto Viejo de Talamanca
Province of Limon, Costa Rica
Jaco
Jaco
Jaco District, Costa Rica
Tulemar Bungalows & Villas
Tulemar Bungalows & Villas
#1 of 47 hotels in Manuel Antonio
Tulemar Resort
Tulemar Resort
#2 of 47 hotels in Manuel Antonio
Nayara Springs
Nayara Springs
#1 of 58 hotels in La Fortuna de San Carlos
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1. Re: 10 days March 2019 - Lodging suggestions

Your intuitions seem fairly on-point, though Coco beach is a bit of a haul (unless there's another Coco beach besides the one in Guanacaste, which is entirely possible).

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Hotel Coco Beach & Casino
Hotel Coco Beach & Casino
310 Reviews
Playas del Coco, Costa Rica
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2. Re: 10 days March 2019 - Lodging suggestions

I think Coco beach and Puerto Viejo are both 4+ hours to get to... Most likely will hire a driver.

But now that you mention that, we don't arrive in Costa Rica until 4pm, so probably will need to stay somewhere closer to the airport that first night...

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Hotel Coco Beach & Casino
Hotel Coco Beach & Casino
310 Reviews
Playas del Coco, Costa Rica
Puerto Viejo de Talamanca
Puerto Viejo de Talamanca
Province of Limon, Costa Rica
Costa Rica
Costa Rica
Central America
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3. Re: 10 days March 2019 - Lodging suggestions

Frankly, Playas del Coco isn't a very appealing place in my opinion. We only did a tour out of there, but driving through it gave the vibe of "glad we're staying on another beach." I can see staying there if the airport is LIR, but SJO? Personally I would pass.

Other issue is that it gets to be a lot of driving and backtracking. Sure, it's 4.5 hours to Coco from SJO, but then it's 10 hours to get from Coco to Puerto Viejo.

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Playas del Coco
Playas del Coco
Province of Guanacaste, Costa Rica
Liberia Airport
Liberia Airport
Liberia, Costa Rica
Juan Santamaria Intl Airport
Juan Santamaria Intl...
San Jose, Costa Rica
Puerto Viejo de Talamanca
Puerto Viejo de Talamanca
Province of Limon, Costa Rica
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4. Re: 10 days March 2019 - Lodging suggestions

Thanks for the insight!! Coco is off the list. So any insight into lodging in Puerto or Jaco?

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Jaco
Jaco
Jaco District, Costa Rica
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5. Re: 10 days March 2019 - Lodging suggestions

We've never stayed in Jaco--just not our bag.

For Puerto Viejo, we stayed outside of town in a secluded rainforest setting. But the place in town that had drawn our attention was Banana Azul. Can't personally vouch for it as I've never stayed there, but it gets great reviews, we've heard great things about it from friends, and it was on our shortlist for this past February after doing our research.

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Jaco
Jaco
Jaco District, Costa Rica
Puerto Viejo de Talamanca
Puerto Viejo de Talamanca
Province of Limon, Costa Rica
Hotel Banana Azul
Hotel Banana Azul
1,619 Reviews
Puerto Viejo de Talamanca, Costa Rica
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6. Re: 10 days March 2019 - Lodging suggestions

One option would be to split the trip in two, with half in the Puerto Viejo area/ Caribbean and half in the Jaco area/Pacific.

For the Pacific side I would spend one or two nights in Manuel Antonio and along with the nights in Jaco.

If you are arriving at 4pm , you can start your trip by going to Jaco. I would much rather be there than stay near the airport for your first night. Night life is one of the strong points of Jaco (surfing is another).

Racandee mentioned in another thread nearby Carara National Park. That looks like a great place to spend some time in the daytime near Jaco.

Edited: 5:45 pm, June 08, 2018
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Puerto Viejo de Talamanca
Puerto Viejo de Talamanca
Province of Limon, Costa Rica
Caribbean
Caribbean
North America
Jaco
Jaco
Jaco District, Costa Rica
Manuel Antonio
Manuel Antonio
Province of Puntarenas, Costa Rica
Carara National Park
Carara National Park
507 Reviews
Carara, Costa Rica
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7. Re: 10 days March 2019 - Lodging suggestions

For Carara, you'd want to spend the hours as early as possible. By 10:30-11:00 am, it is BLAZING hot there.

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Carara
Carara
Province of San Jose, Costa Rica
Portland, Oregon
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8. Re: 10 days March 2019 - Lodging suggestions

If you do end up spending time in Jaco, the next beach over, Playa Hermosa, is nicer and quieter for relaxing.

https://www.govisitcostarica.com/images/phot…

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Jaco
Jaco
Jaco District, Costa Rica
Playa Manuel Antonio
Playa Manuel Antonio
10,733 Reviews
Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica
San Jose, Costa Rica
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35 reviews
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9. Re: 10 days March 2019 - Lodging suggestions

Tamarindo beach is great...and very much what you are looking for...

roadadvisor

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Tamarindo Beach
Tamarindo Beach
2,877 Reviews
Tamarindo, Costa Rica
Portland, Oregon
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456 posts
1 review
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10. Re: 10 days March 2019 - Lodging suggestions

How about the river tour on the Tarcoles? At least you won't be hiking even if it's blazing hot.

Is this the one you refer to?

https://www.tripadvisor.com/Attraction_Revie…

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Tarcoles
Tarcoles
Tarcoles District, Costa Rica
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