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“Fantastic company, flawless experience”

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: Lockers / storage, Activities for older children, Bathroom facilities
Reviewed March 31, 2015

We had Costa Rica Expeditions arrange a 10-day trip for us (2 couples in our 50's). The entire experience, start to finish, was fantastic. Based on our preferred dates, price range and interests, CRE pulled together a proposed itinerary in a matter of days. We tweaked it a bit, and then put down a deposit. It was incredibly easy, and surprisingly affordable. At every step, our email contact person was courteous, fast, and thorough. But the real proof of the pudding was how great the trip was. Every lodging was fantastic, every transfer was smooth as silk, every guide or driver was full of personality and information. The pacing was also great--we were very active and saw a ton, but were not overwhelmed, and had just enough down time to appreciate that we were on vacation. We even added an activity at the last minute, and the logistics were just as smooth and flawless as the activities we'd scheduled months in advance. We had a wonderful time and would highly recommend using CRE to anyone planning a trip--they could clearly and easily tailor a trip to the interests and capacities of any group. We are not typically tour types, but this trip was put together much more efficiently and better than we could have done ourselves, and we were able to just relax and enjoy the experience instead of stressing over the details ourselves.

Date of experience: March 2015
Thank JER0095
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 April 1, 2015

I really appreciate this guest review; it allows me to expand an important point that we all have to consider when thinking about a vacation and whether to go with a company like Costa Rica Expeditions or try to do things on your own.

This guest said:

“they could clearly and easily tailor a trip to the interests and capacities of any group. We are not typically tour types, but this trip was put together much more efficiently and better than we could have done ourselves, and we were able to just relax and enjoy the experience instead of stressing over the details ourselves.”

The first thing to consider is how much vacation time do you get? We say that all vacation time is precious and in our view that’s true. But for those who don’t have a lot of vacation time or really need to be inspired and rejuvenated it’s especially important. The same goes for people that have had an especially hard year or really need to connect with loved ones. When these are the things that are at stake, the value of the vacation time goes up. In our view, this is why it’s important that someone have your back and set the stage so that you can accomplish your goals. This is when customized planning, arranging and operation of private day tours, is doubly important.

The other thing to consider is, how important is peace of mind to you? Peace of mind while you plan and peace of mind while you’re here. Do you love the planning and researching process? Or does it become another chore that has to be done when you get home from work? When you’re here, are you the kind of traveler that gets a laugh out of a wrong turn resulting in going a couple hours out of your way or a botched reservation or bumped tour? Or are you the kind of traveler that is more anxious and would tend to stress out about these kinds of things. The kind of person that after the first thing went wrong would spend the rest of the time stressing over the next drive, activity or hotel (that’s me)?

Buen Viaje!

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.
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499 - 503 of 654 reviews

Reviewed March 30, 2015

We've traveled in Costa Rica several times in the past and always planned our own trips. We always enjoyed ourselves and had great trips. BUT this time we decided to try Costa Rica Expeditions and LOVED the wonderful service we got!! All the venues we visited on our private day tours were beautiful and filled with natural beauty - and our naturalist guides and drivers were all stellar! If this sounds too glowing, I assure you I'm not overstating the quality of the venues/guides/drivers provided by CRE. I will absolutely use them again on my next trip to CR - took ALL the worry our of our vacation which made it COMPLETELY relaxing!

Date of experience: March 2015
Thank BBQTx
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 31, 2015

Thank you so much for taking the time to share your experiences with others that may be considering us for customized planning, arranging and operation of private day tours.

It’s especially telling that a person that had been to Costa Rica on her own several times decided to travel with us and plans to continue to travel in Costa Rica with us. The big advantage to planning your private day tours with us is that you will have peace of mind while you travel! There will never be something gnawing at you, you can relax, enjoy and spending time with your loved ones knowing that we have it all covered.

Our Naturalist Guides and our Spanish speaking drivers play a huge role in the service that we provide. All are professionals with years of experience delighting guests.

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 March 24, 2015

I used CRE to plan a two-week, three-generation, six-person tour. I've never used a tour company before, but after this experience I believe that their services are well worth it. I'd agree with the other reviews: their responsiveness and customer service were outstanding from start to finish. We did not want the typical tour but had some specific off-path things that we wanted to do, and that was cheerfully arranged. Our driver and naturalist guide were professional, friendly, and endlessly accommodating of our desires and needs. They were in addition very open and shared their lives with us in a way that helped us understand many things about CR that we wouldn't have. I was especially nervous about what the vehicle would be like, but Carlos exceeded all possible expectations with his sparkling Hiace diesel van and eminently careful driving. As other reviews have said, CRE is not the cheapest option--but it is well worth it!

Date of experience: March 2015
Thank jallibunn
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 26, 2015

Planning private day tours for a multi-generational family vacation can be challenging.
At Costa Rica Expeditions we design private day tours for this kind of vacation often, there’s nothing like experience to learn how to listen, read between the lines and suggest options that will set the stage so that an extended family can come together and have fun.

This may involve having more than one activity taking place on a given day, adding an additional guide so that grandparents or small children can explore at a more leisurely pace while teenagers and their parents can move faster or arranging for a surprise birthday party or other special occasion celebration.

We’ve planned many multi-generational family vacations, and take pride in doing everything possible to give you complete peace of mind so that you can concentrate on enjoying each other.

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.
Reviewed March 24, 2015

Incredible personal service provided by the friendliest and highest quality guides and drivers who created daily adventures that we will never forget. Every minor detail was planned leaving us to enjoy the country, people and amenities. We highly recommend Toutouga Lodge and Gardens and Norya Gardens for the fantastic accommodations, service and food. And, I'd be remiss if I didn't mention Johnathan our naturalist for a day and drivers Marisio and Goose who went beyond driving to personally embrace us as friends, answer our questions and provide little details of the country, people, environment and plants and animals that we would otherwise have not learned travelling independently. It truly was "legendary service" and a trip of a lifetime. If we are able to return to CR we will use Costa Rica Expeditions again.

Date of experience: March 2015
Thank Rick 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 26, 2015

Thank you for sharing your experiences in Costa Rica with other guests that may be considering us for their private day tours. I am especially grateful that you singled out our guides and drivers and their caring personalized service.

When guests book their private day trips with us, we customize the experience so that guests are able to see and do what they want to do. We ask a lot of questions about interests and preferences and then hand pick the guides so that he or she can add more to your experience by focusing on the aspects that are of special interest to you.

Vacation Times 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 March 23, 2015

We used Costa Rica expeditions for a 10 day journey with our 4 boys ages 6-11. They set up a trip that started in San Jose, then went on to white water rafting on the Pejibaye River, where they made us feel that all of the kids were in good hands and safe (thanks Ricardo and crew!). We then on to Tortuguero, Monte Verde, Arenal and Playa Conchal. Norton at the Tortuga Lodge took us on an amazing morning boat cruise looking for wildlife, and we saw 3 species of monkeys, caimans, and a huge number of birds. We had a naturalist guide with us for a portion of the trip, and William truly made the difference between a regular vacation, and an extraordinary one. He took us on several jungle walks, and showed us more than 50 species of birds, coatamundi, agouti and other animals in their natural habitats. We also took part in multiple outdoor adventures, including zip lining at Monte Verde, horseback riding and river tubing in Arenal. Every transfer was timely and seamless (although I have to say - the roads in Costa Rica STINK - pot holes, gravel, windy - we did have a number of stops for carsick kids), and the drivers were also very kind to the children (thanks Max and Alberto!). Our hotel accommodations were all very nice. They really took care of everything, and as I looked at the line for the departure tax this morning before we boarded the plane, all I can say is, thank goodness they took care of that, as well! The boys are already asking when we can go back to see William!

Date of experience: March 2015
Thank Mom_of_TAZM
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 24, 2015

We are delighted to hear that you and your 4 boys ages 6-11 had a great family vacation!

Our Travel Planners strive to find the perfect combination so that the private day trips suggested to families like yours have the right combination of active and down time. By letting our guides and drivers take over the nuts and bolts of each activity, you can sit back and relax.
Costa Rica’s beaches, volcanoes and rainforests are wonderful places to explore and play. I’m thrilled to hear that the boys want to come back and continue exploring Costa Rica with William, there is so much more to learn and explore!

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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