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  • Taylor Stroud
  • "What city is the best place to stay in Costa Rica ?"

Taylor Stroud

Fort Worth, Texas

What city is the best place to stay in Costa Rica ?

I am looking for lots of wildlife, not a lot of tourists, beautiful beach and jungle....I have been looking into Jaco and think this might be where I choose. What do you think?

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  • henry o.

    henry o.

    Hi Taylor, please tell us exactly what do you like to discover, what do you really worry about it, definitely I would recommend the best. · (0 likelikes)

 

					
					
					
				

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  • Ross Sparks

    top answer by

    Ok I love CR but it is very touristy :( i have been 6 times so i can help! don't do anything in the other suggestions they are all played out! And avoid Jaco like the plague unless going to Montezuma (my 3rd pick)! Arenal isn't erupting any more and la fortuna is kinda cool but without the valcano you can do everything there elsewhere, and Manuel, really!?? He asked for non touristy area!!! I think i may be the only minimalist, budget, non touristy member lol!

    Your best bet is the Osa Peninsula! It's the best place in CR hands down! The beauty is unmatched and it's the most biologically deverse place on earth! Get supplies in Puerto Jimenez and drive past Cabo Matapalo to some of the vacation rentals out there! Then just drink eat and enjoy being one of the only people that go to this beautiful country..... And actually see it!

    Second place goes to Puerto Viejo

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    • Ross S.

      Ross S.

      Casa Dos Rios, Where the Rainforest Meets the Sea! This is were I stayed! Best place and hosts ever! Look it up and you will know what I'm talking about. Ask me any questions you have! · (0 likelikes)

    • Taylor S.

      Taylor S.

      What is the best way to get to the Osa Peninsula? · (0 likelikes)

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  • Ralph Ramos

    answered first by

    Hi Taylor,

    you might check for Arenal, near the volcano with the same name. It is a very youth city with plenty of adventure attractions and cheap cost.

    You MUST check the Tenorio Volcano National Park - Rio Celeste a one of kind blue river! 2 hours from Arenal (car + hiking)

    Regards and Pura vida!

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  • tami earnest

    answered by

    Dont go to Jaco! Its not even close to the nicest beach/place to stay there. I actually found parts of it pretty dirty.

    A great combination would be the jungle.wildlife, hiking, ziplining, white water rafting, etc in Rincon ( I stayed at Rincón de la Vieja Lodge). Its almost as good Arenal but wayyyy more accessible to the beaches on the West. I have done both and I loved both but Arenal is not the easiest to get to and not worth the drive.

    After Rincon, drive down to Nosara. The most quaint, beautiful, surfer beach town with great food and great people... yoga, surfing, massages, relaxing... I dream about going back there!

    I've never been but Manuel Antonio is also supposed to be amazing and a good balance of wildlife, fun and relaxing, beach.


    Enjoy!

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  • Michelle Wenthur

    answered by

    Check out Corcovado National Park. No tourists because it is remote. The only way in is by boat. It was such an adventure just getting there. Hiking amazing! TONS of birds and monkeys. We stayed at Casa Corcovado Jungle Lodge and LOVED every minute!

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  • Joseph Brown

    answered by

    Jaco is very touristy and not that pretty. Head a little south and stay in Manuel Antonio if you can afford it. Truly magical. Otherwise, try Arenal.

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  • Laura Dunlop

    answered by

    I would agree with the other posters that Manuel Antonio and Arenal Volcano (La Fortuna is the nearby village) are fantastic places to stay in Costa Rica. In Arenal we stayed at the Arenal Springs Hotel and in Manuel Antonio we stayed at La Mansion Inn - both excellent. We actually booked with Anywhere Costa Rica, who suggested accommodations, activities, and transportation - highly recommended! I would also avoid Jaco as the beach was less clean and some people had advised us (including our travel planner) that it was less safe.

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  • Ted Nelson

    answered by

    Manuel Antonio is a great beach jungle destination. There is the beautiful Playa Manuel Antonio and then with walking distance is the Manuel Antonio National Park. There is also a fantastic beach within the national park. It is a little touristy, but not too bad.

    For a more off the grid experience try the Osa Peninsula down south. The wildlife is off the charts in Corcovado National Park. I am not sure about the beaches, but I am sure there are some around. The beaches in the park are visited by crocs and bull sharks so no swimming there.

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  • Richard Barone

    answered by

    Jaco, Playa Herradura, Punta Leona, Playa Hermosa, are all in that area too, Its a good area.

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  • Rae- Ann

    answered by

    I was in Manuel Antonio last year, the first week of May and I think I was the only tourist in the place :)

    I stayed at a b and B half way between Quepos and Manuel Antonio NP...10 minutes and one dollar taxi to either..It was life changing, and I truly felt alone on the most beautiful beaches in the world..use airbnb

    Lots of monkey sloths iguanas et al

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  • Russ Porter

    answered by

    Hi, I've visited Costa Rica many times and I always start Vista Del Valle (Vistadelvalle.com) a small plantation hotel about 40 minute drive from Aeropuerto Internacional Juan Santamaría (SJO) then drive up to the Arenal Volcano area. I don't care for the hotels in La Fortuna but do like Arenal Lodge (Arenal Lodge), 5 miles past La Fortuna just beyond the Lake Arenal Dam . You can then drive up to Tamarindo past Aeropuerto Internacional Daniel Oduber Q. (LIR) and visit Playa Grande where large turtles lay their eggs in the winter but don't swim there because of the rip tide. Another area I love is around Puerto Quepos (puertoquepos) and Manuel Antonio with tours of the monkeys, plants & flowers, etc. Nice safe beach and all range of hotels and prices. Be sure to stop at the old C135 cargo airplane restaurant and read it's history.

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  • jodi redmond

    answered by

    Although it has been several years, I would recommend heading further south to Dominical area which is a great beach town, surfing and close to the jungle and waterfalls...Jaco was tired.

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  • Mary Beth Johnson

    answered by

    In my opinion, the only plus side of Jaco is that it is close to San José. There are many much more beautiful places in Costa Rica. If you only want to go to one place, I would recommend Manuel Antonio. It's the perfect combination of jungle and beautiful beaches.

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  • Eunice Báez Sánchez

    answered by

    I recommend the South Pacific area. You can stay at Puerto Jimenez, a little fishing town and go whale and dolphin watching in Golfo Dulce. Its pretty near to Corcovado National Park, where you can find about 375 bird species, 124 mammal species, 61 fish species, 71 kind of reptiles and about 8 thousand species of insects.

    It´s not crowded, because it not frequented by locals.

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  • Marshall Buck

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  • Hoy Costa Rica

    answered by

    Jaco has its perks if you like city by the beach that has nightlife.It offers tons of places to eat. Theres really nothing that unique about Jaco. There are much better places to go. Jaco is kind of grimy, it has a pretty bad reputation for drugs and tons of prostitutes who flood the discos there. If you like you can take a 45 minutes water taxi to nicer beaches of Playa Santa Teresa and Montezuma. If you have anymore questions feel free to hit me up.

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  • Instituto Estelar Bilingüe

    answered by

    I highly recommend Montezuma. It can sometimes be very touristy, but if you go during the low season it is an amazing little town. There are incredible beaches, waterfalls, wildlife, and hikes you can do easily from the town. My favorite thing there is the turtle hatchery on the beach where you can see just-hatched turtle and watch them run into the ocean for the first time - it's incredible! Beyond all that, it is a small town with the friendliest people you will ever meet and good food (which can sometimes be hard to find in Costa Rica).

    If you feel like studying Spanish during your trip, you should check out Instituto Estelar Bilingue in Liberia. We offer intensive classes that are designed to get you speaking fast. There are also cultural classes like dance, cooking, music, artesan, etc. and volunteer opportunities as well. Check us out at http://www.estelarcr.com/.

    Have a great trip!

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