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“Is this the best travel agency ever?”

Costa Rica Expeditions
Ranked #2 of 132 Tours in San Jose
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: More than 3 hours
Owner description: Costa Rica Expeditions, unique travel experiences since 1978.
Useful Information: Bathroom facilities, Activities for older children, Lockers / storage
Reviewed March 9, 2015

Our family of five visited Costa Rica over January 2015. Based on the awards won by the company, I took a punt and asked Nadya of CRE to organise our holiday. It was the most successful gamble ever taken. The company is brilliant. Everything was organised to perfection. The holiday was pitched exactly as we wanted it and directed to please the three adrenalin loving teenagers as well as their conservative parents. It was not only the value for money that was so appealing. It was the extraordinary attention to detail with follow up emails and advice for every part of the tour. Further, we changed our plans a couple of times and this was dealt with efficiently and economically. Our family has done a lot of travel but this was by far the best travel agency we have used.

Date of experience: January 2015
Thank A H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Natalie E, Guest Relations Manager at Costa Rica Expeditions, responded to this reviewResponded March 10, 2015

WOW! Thank you for this extraordinary review!

Customization is our driving force, our specialty and what we love to do, Nadya will be thrilled to hear that working with us was “It was the most successful gamble ever taken”.

We spend a lot of time training, thinking about and working on communication so that we get better and better at accurately interpreting what our guests want to experience while they are on vacation and then making it happen.

Thank you so much, it’s people like you that make it all worth it!

Natalie Ewing
Director Marketing & Guest Satisfaction

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a ReviewReviews (649)
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506 - 510 of 649 reviews

Reviewed February 28, 2015

Recently returned from a CRE-arranged visit to the Osa Peninsula, Tortuguero and Arenal. These people know what they're doing and try hard to please. Osa and Tortuguero are fairly remote and it would have been somewhat difficult to arrange visits on our own, especially with a total of only 8 days in CR. CRE knew the best ways to get us there. Wildlife and scenery were stunning.

Date of experience: February 2015
1  Thank Allen B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Natalie E, Guest Relations Manager at Costa Rica Expeditions, responded to this reviewResponded March 10, 2015

You’re right, although Costa Rica looks small on a map, it is logistically complicated. It takes a long time to get anywhere!

To be able to cover Osa Peninsula, Tortuguero and Arenal in 8 days, you really need to get the transportation right, include flights and have perfect timing!

We are delighted to hear that you got to enjoy the stunning wildlife and scenery that you hoped for!

Vacation Time is Precious!

Natalie Ewing
Director Marketing & Guest Satisfaction

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 26, 2015

Our first holiday to Costa Rica in 2013 was booked through a travel agent in the UK and there were certain parts of the holiday that we didn’t want but we had been told we had to have. On arrival at Tortuga Lodge, the manager Julian Fallas, informed us that we could have had exactly what we wanted and Costa Rica Expeditions could have arranged the whole holiday for us, other than booking our international flights. So, when we wanted to return this year we asked them to make all our arrangements. This was the best decision we have ever made. We got exactly what we wanted and more.

From our first email, being met by representatives before we were even able to collect our bags on arrival at the airport, to their naturalist guide and driver saying goodbye to us at the exact time we had to check-in for our flight home, was perfection. Everyone we encountered was very helpful, friendly, and went that extra mile to make our holiday the best we had ever had. They certainly succeeded. It’s the little extras they do for you that really make them special. We just wish that Michael Kaye, the owner and founder, had companies in other countries. If so, we would never use a UK travel agent again.

Will we use them again? The answer is, despite only having been home for a week, we have already emailed to start the arrangements for a return holiday in 2016.

Date of experience: February 2015
1  Thank BobandCarol45
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Natalie E, Guest Relations Manager at Costa Rica Expeditions, responded to this reviewResponded February 27, 2015

We honored when guests review our service as highly as you did below, thank you so much for taking the time to share your experiences with people considering us for their private day trips.
Our roots as a company are in white water rafting, birding and natural history, so when we have the opportunity to plan days that are focused on these areas it’s a real treat.

Thank you for trusting us with your precious vacation time, its people like you that make it all worth it.

We will continue to focus on delivering Legendary Service & Unforgettable Memories!

Natalie Ewing
Director Marketing & Guest Satisfaction

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 23, 2015

Just Returned from 7-night Arenal Volcano- Monteverde- Guanacaste/Papagayo family vacation. I found/read favorable review of CR Expeditions in Travel & Leisure Magazine and am very thankful to Luis and colleagues for planning/coordinating our trip/itinerary. This outfit does not provide flight planning assistance but everything else was expertly arranged and coordinated. I was able to work with Luis via email/phone and consider multiple hotel and tour options that matched our price and itinerary preferences. For every location and tour idea - I really felt I was dealing with a Costa Rica expert who gave candid advice and steered me to best travel option for our family needs and value. During trip, EVERY Hotel, Transport /transfer, tour operator, and Naturalist exceeded expectations and we never experienced difficulty with any transfer, added expense, or miscommunication. Wonderful destination & top notch travel planning professionals.

Date of experience: January 2015
4  Thank MPH_AA
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Natalie E, Guest Relations Manager at Costa Rica Expeditions, responded to this reviewResponded February 25, 2015

I especially like the sentence below from your review.

"For every location and tour idea - I really felt I was dealing with a Costa Rica expert who gave candid advice and steered me to best travel option for our family needs and value."

Our mission is to customize each experience so that you can experience the Costa Rica that you have been dreaming about, with the peace of mind of knowing that we are behind the scenes taking care of everything.

Vacation Time is Precious!

Natalie Ewing
Director Marketing & Guest Satisfaction

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed February 20, 2015

Costa Rica Expeditions exceeded all of my expectations, and more, in their planning and execution of a two-week travel exploration out of San Jose at the end of January. Elena Monge worked with me and my friend from across the U.S., carefully honoring our requests and making suggestions for the perfect blend of adventure, wildlife viewing and relaxation. Using planes, boats and vans we went to Tortuguero and the lovely Tortuga Lodge; visited Poas volcano and the La Paz waterfalls on the way to La Fortuna, staying at the extraordinary Nayara Hotel and Gardens and experiencing the rain forest plus hot springs; learned much about the region from our driver Albiero on the way to Quepos (and practiced our English/Spanish together); and finally took an exhilarating speed boat taxi ride to Montezuma for four glorious days on the beaches.
And all that with perfect connections, friendly, knowledgeable and professional guides and amazing accommodations. I cannot speak highly enough of owners Michael and Yolanda Kaye, their wonderful staff and the organization they have created. Customer satisfaction is their mantra, and they deliver. I loved my trip and cannot speak highly enough of CR Expeditions.

Date of experience: January 2015
2  Thank Diana R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Natalie E, Guest Relations Manager at Costa Rica Expeditions, responded to this reviewResponded February 25, 2015

Your review of you vacation, touches on so many of the things that are our guiding lights

- exceeded all of my expectations

- carefully honoring our requests

- making suggestions for the perfect blend

-friendly, knowledgeable and professional guides

- Customer satisfaction is their mantra

Michael and his wife, Yolanda started Costa Rica Expeditions as a white water rafting company in the fall of 1978.

Although the company has grown considerably since, the original vision which Michael expressed in a June 1981 brochure has not changed:

"Our goal is to create unique travel experiences that transcend conventional sightseeing and travel. Our dream is to promote the type of tourism which is mutually beneficial and nourishing to both the visitor and the visited."

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