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Manuel Antonio versus Osa peninsula and other general ?'s

San Diego...
Level Contributor
15 posts
2 reviews
Manuel Antonio versus Osa peninsula and other general ?'s

Love these forums ton of helpful people and ideas. Going to CR first, timer.... 7 days in CR total. Honeymoon, wifey and I are looking to be active, no resort pampering for the most part. Need to get a general gameplan put together while still being flexible while were down there. Looking for like 70% jungle time and 30% becah time. Appreciate any help in advance. Couple of questions

1. How many days out of the 7 should we spend in Manuel Antonio, I hear it's small was thinking one full day would be enough for park/beaches.

2. Osa, should we bus/shuttle it or fly down from M.A?

3. Thinking of staying at Danta Corcovado lodge while there, any thoughts? Other option in our porice range is Iguana lodge

4. Guided tour or wander on our own through caravaco? Drake bay or Puerto Jimenez a better side trip?

We're planning on flying back to San jose a day and a hlf before we leave so we're not stressed about missing our flight home. This puts us in San jose with a day to explore. Heard the Poas volcano is a cool trip and close by. Any other ideas for our last day in/around San jose. Can you get on a tour to Arenal from San jose

would it be wise to rent a car for any part of our trip. or bettle to shuttle/taxi round.

Kind of all over theplace with my questions, thanks for your thoughts.

Level Contributor
903 posts
60 reviews
1. Re: Manuel Antonio versus Osa peninsula and other general ?'s

When are you going? That makes a big difference in Rain vs. little rain.

San Diego...
Level Contributor
15 posts
2 reviews
2. Re: Manuel Antonio versus Osa peninsula and other general ?'s

Sorry forgot that important detail. Getting there nov 27th, basically 2.5 weeks

Quepos, Costa Rica
Level Contributor
16 posts
3 reviews
3. Re: Manuel Antonio versus Osa peninsula and other general ?'s

Hi Rambega,

Manuel Antonio is a great place to start on your first visit. If you fly in at a reasonable time you can make it to MA in the afternoon, settle in and have dinner. Next day go to the park and the beaches (park closed Mondays). Maybe take one more day to relax, take a zip-line tour, or go to Quepos and shop. On your third day you will be refreshed for almost a full day of travel to get to the Osa. You can take a bus to Seripe and then a fun boat ride out to drake bay (read the guidebooks for estimated travel times). Once in Drake bay you will have some time to explore. Take a snorkel or dive trip one day to Cano Island if you like the water and another tour to one of the ranger stations in Corcovado or hike the trail that goes to Playa San Josecito. Take the last day to relax before you fly out. San Jose has some great sites and museums for your last day. The last thing is...Get ready to go the next year for Two Weeks instead of one.

Have fun,

Pura Vida!


Providence, RI
Level Contributor
41 posts
3 reviews
4. Re: Manuel Antonio versus Osa peninsula and other general ?'s

I have another option for you. Fly to Manuel Antonio and explore for a full day (two nights lodging). Rent a car on your third day and drive to Uvita for a night (maybe at TikiVillas). Drive on to Puerto Jimenez and do three nights at Iguana Lodge. Fly back to San Jose for a night before leaving the next day. The only part of this I'm not sure about is whether Solid Car Rental has an office in Quepos (Manuel Antonio), since they are the only car rental place in Puerto Jimenez. This is a lot of moving around, but could be a fun trip. You could also just split the trip between Manuel Antonio and Uvita, and do a day trip to Corcovado. If you did that, you could fly in and out of Quepos and rent a car there, returning to the same place. I've done that trip and its easy and fun. Uvita is only about an hour from Quepos, but very different.

San Diego...
Level Contributor
15 posts
2 reviews
5. Re: Manuel Antonio versus Osa peninsula and other general ?'s

Thanks for the feedback. The one certainty of our destinations is the osa area. Not sure where to stay there, but I know we want to visit this general region. Been hearing a lot of good things about drake bay. My understanding is that it's easier to get deeper into coravaco park from Drake by boat than it is to hke in through Puerto Jimenez, is this correct.

Edited: 9:56 pm, November 09, 2012
San Jose, Costa Rica
Level Contributor
189 posts
6 reviews
6. Re: Manuel Antonio versus Osa peninsula and other general ?'s

My recommendation is to base at Dominical Area, you will love this area, so green and lush with lots of activities to do and yet you don´t feel the crowd, once settled there, look for Hotel Cuna del Angel, you can do a one day tour to Manuel Antonio National Park, just 45 min away, enjoy the park and then back to beautiful dominical, then the next day go for another one day tour to Corcovado National Park at Osa Peninsula, and then back to Dominical. IT works very well like that.

Puerto Jimenez...
Level Contributor
354 posts
3 reviews
7. Re: Manuel Antonio versus Osa peninsula and other general ?'s

Drake Bay will offer an assortment of lodges suitable for a honeymoon, and provides boat access into Covcovado National Park. You might want to spend an overnight at the Sirena Biological Station in the park so to experience dusk and dawn, two times of day when the animals tend to be more active.

Puerto Jimenez is a good base if you plan on hiking into the park from Los Patos or La Leona, but if not, I don't necessarily suggest PJ as a honeymoon destination.

Other options would be around Cabo Matapalo, where there are lodges and house rentals. You might check out Bosque del Cabo south of there as an option as well. It gets many good reviews on this forum. Or check La Leona Eco Lodge, in Carate, where you will have simple yet comfortable accommodations and be a few minutes walk from Corcovado's La Leona Ranger Station entrance.

I will say that I don't think Danta is the best option for a honeymoon unless you plan to use it as a base to hike in from Los Patos to Sirena.

Hope this helps,

Pura Vida, Ballardo

8. Re: Manuel Antonio versus Osa peninsula and other general ?'s

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