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“Guanacaste CR Trip 2009”

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Level 3 Contributor
7 reviews
12 helpful votes
“Guanacaste CR Trip 2009”
Reviewed October 30, 2009

We attended a meeting in Liberia Costa Rica and did some daily sight seeing trips with the help of a local tour company called Summer Sun Tours and our awesome and very knowledgeable tour guide Marco de la Guardia and our very cautious driver John Fernandez. We were able to visit an organic coffee plantation one of the 5 plantations in Guanacaste region in the NW corner of Costa Rica and got to sample some really good freshly brewed coffee. Next, we did a one day tour to visit Arenal Volcano which is still very active and we also did some hiking to have a closer encounter with nature and the wildlife in a tropical rainforest. We then soaked our tired muscles in a fantastic secluded private hot springs in Eco Termales. We were lucky enough to see a lot of birds and wildlife on our afternoon boat tour along the Temesque River in Palo Verde National Park ..thanks to our "hawk-eye" guide Solano who is super funny. Lastly, we did the 11 zip line canopy ride tour at the Congo trail which was an unbelievable exhilarating experience one shouldn't miss... If you haven't visited this beautiful, warm and very eco-friendly country then I suggest you put it on your "bucket list!"

1 Thank FunRoamer
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tamarindo, Costa Rica
1 review
Reviewed September 17, 2009

No matter where in Guanacaste - Costa Rica for that matter ... you want to go, Denise and Paul are the people to call. Prompt, friendly, both spanish and english spoken. Tours, taxi service, they can provide all transportaion needs for you. Book online before you arrive for airport transfer and keep going from there. Their website is http://xplorecostarica.com/ - phone numbers are [--]. From our experience they were the friendliest, most flexible and helpful that we have used in the past 2 years.

Thank CarlanCraig
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toronto, Canada
1 review
1 helpful vote
“Just Beautiful!!”
Reviewed July 29, 2009

We just returned from Guanacaste, Costa Rica. Simply amazing. We wanted a vacation that combined touring the country-side and relaxing in a comfortable resort. We found what we were looking for.

The resort: Paradisus Play Conchal.
It was beautiful. The grounds were gorgeous, the rooms clean and nicely appointed and the staff very friendly. We ate at the Mexican, Asian and the Gabi restaurants and found the service and food good. Room service was excellent - very swift service. The beach is beautiful. It was the perfect spot for us to return to to relax after our day of touring the countryside.

The tours and countryside:
We pretty much did something every day except for one day when my husband and son golfed at the resort in the afternoon and we just walked the length of the beach in the morning.

The flora and fauna are exquisite in Guanacaste. Being July, there had been sufficient rain to provide a very lush landscape. Note that even though it is the wet season in July, we only had the odd very light shower very early in the morning and one afternoon around 4:00 a very short thunderstorm. Other than that sunny with clouds or overcast which suited us fine in that direct sun while touring would not be the most comfortable. We're not the types to lie on a beach and bake all day, so overcast was not an issue for us.

The tours were amazing. As most anyone will tell you, avoid the tour operators on the beach as they often not insured or bonded and not good quality - even though you might get it cheaper, it's not worth the risk.

We used 'Tours Your Way' (http://www.tours-your-way.com/) for three of our tours which we had pre-booked before we left. Mainor and his company are everything that he says it is on his website. They are private/personal tours. Just ourselves and Mainor. He would stop along the way to point out wildlife or special scenaries etc. or stop on our request at any point. He's a wonderful man. Pleasant, sweet and fun. He took great care of us. The first tour he took us on was the river boat cruise in Palo Verde. Super!!!! The second was to a farm in the rainforest where the owner grows macademia nuts, cacao, ornamental exotic flowers (eg. ginger) for export, herbs, heart of palm etc. He and his wife were wonderful! And just being in the rainforest. Mainor had prepared this tour just for us on our request. It was not one he had offered on his website but I had requested a 'cultural' type of tour and this was just perfect. After the tour of the rainforest farm, the owner took us to visit a Costa Rican family in the nearby village where they welcomed us with open arms. The mother made this delicious Costa Rican desert (I can't remember the name of it) and made us the best coffee I ever tasted. My husband and son even played soccer with her two children. An absolutely amazing day. I also forgot to say that as a special bonus, Mainor took us to this absolutely gorgeous waterfall. Our final trip with Mainor was the Mega Combo tour which we also thoroughly enjoyed. I can't say enough good things about Mainor and Tours Your Way. We very highly recommend him. They are truly tours the way you want them.

On the other two days, we booked surfing lessons and ATV tours through High Tide which have a location at the resort (by the entrance to the beach). We were very pleased with those tours as well. The guides were friendly and fun. The ATV beach tour was awesome. He took us to 5 beaches along the coast, each beach being somewhat different in character than the other. It was beautiful. The mountain ATV tour was also great - very challengin terrain made it alot of fun. Ny son's surfing lessons were in Tamarindo so that gave us an opportunity to explore Tamarindo town as well. My son had a blast surfing. His instructors on both days were great.

Overall, we had a beautiful vacation combining touring the countryside and just relaxing at a beautiful resort. Guanacaste is just lovely. I could go on and on and on.....

We will visit Costa Rica again and check out other provinces which I'm sure are as spectacular as Guanacaste.

This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
south texas
Level 1 Contributor
1 review
“Great Honeymoon”
Reviewed May 3, 2008

My wife and I just returned from our honeymoon, where we visited The Province of Guanacaste, Costa Rica, we stayed at the Occidental Grand Pappagayo. We loved our honeymoon and we had a very good time, we went on a sailboat cruise, snorkeling, Zip Lining (Canopy Tour), horse back riding, water sliding, we went to a hot springs spa, deep sea fishing, and four-wheeling through the mountains. We also visited the small town of CoCo Beach where we bought a few souvenirs and did a little gambling, and partying, with some new friends we met from New Jersey. I have learned after the trip that the southern part of Costa Rica has a bit more scenery and wildlife but we were happy with our stay.

Thank cctaylor
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
2 reviews
“Family Adventures in Costa Rica”
Reviewed March 16, 2008

Costa Rica is such a wonderful location to go and spend time with your family! We were there mid-February for a very fun filled and enjoyable week. We booked last November into the all-inclusive Fiesta Premier Papagayo in the Guanacaste province. By the time we arrived, it had been purchased, and now is the Hilton Premier. For us, it was still an excellent start to an excellent vacation. The resort is on the Gulf of Papagayo and from our Bungalow, we could see straight out the Gulf to the Pacific Ocean. Beautiful sunsets and sunrises graced our days. The staff was friendly and helpful, the food excellent, and the activities numerous. I would stay there again without a second thought!
From the time we booked until we arrived, we spent numerous hours doing research into the sights and sounds of Costa Rica. Much of our time was spent perusing the various tour guide sites. We were looking for some quiet, quality time for ourselves while we toured the area. Three tour companies and some of their tours interested us so we decided to book some tours from home instead of from the hotel. We ended up taking three tours with one of the locals, Mainor Lara. I do not know how the other tour companies would have been, but our tours with Mainor were phenomenal!! We fed capuchins, we fed coati’s, we “chatted” with Howler monkies, we bathed in mud, we zipped, and we saw red-hot lava rocks careening down the mountainside. Oh ya, and then there was this croc leaping up out of the water – enough said! Mainor was awesome; he really goes the extra mile to make every adventure a once in lifetime experience. If you book any tours with Mainor, you won’t be disappointed.
We were only in the country a day or two, and our kids were already complaining about only being able to stay 1 week!
What a wonderful place to visit. The adventures were grand, the food superb, and the people more than friendly. We all are already looking forward to returning and thinking of what adventure we will tackle next!

Thank Shawn33
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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