We are traveling to the Andaz Peninsula Papagayo Resort located on the Gulf of Papagayo. Our hotel will be super cool, but we don't want to miss anything surrounding it. Where should we go to hike? Are there areas, types of food or activities we should not miss? We have never been to Cost Rica. Thank you!!
Hello Suzanne! This is an outstanding 5 star eclectic hotel!! I had the opportunity to work for the Andaz/Hyatt Hotels owners in Costa Rica and I can tell you that they are very into welcoming guests to create an unforgettable experience !! I am also 100% sure that you will enjoy your stay in this beautiful and peaceful country (besides March is an excellent choice as it is dry season). Gulf of Papagayo located in the province of Guanacaste is the ideal setting for nature lovers and it is very famous for its beaches therefore I would recommend that you spend some time visiting those that are very close of your hotel, i.e.: Playas del Coco, Ocotal Beach Resort, Culebra (Costa Rica), Playa Hermosa among others.
In close proximity to the Gulf are a number of beautiful National Parks such as: Santa Rosa National Park, Las Baulas National Marine Park, Rincón de la Vieja National Park famous park for hiking. Iam sure you can find at the hotel, an experienced naturalist guide who can take you there. I will also recommend rafting at the River bar & lounge or horseback riding at any of these parks mentioned above.
If you have time I will highly recommend that you go on a one day tour to Monteverde Cloud Forest and/or to the Arenal Volcano. These 2 places are unique and provide the visitors a lot of opportunities to explore the amazing beauty of nature.
Last but not least, don't forget to say (every time you like something) PURA VIDA!!! :)
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I highly recommend that you use a tour guide to check out areas outside of the "hotel zone".
When we went, we used Freddy Montero of Costa Rica Private Tours (http://www.costaricaprivatetours.net/)
Freddy offers everything from airport transfers to customized tours. He can also take you on trips that are more "ordinary".
We love Costa Rica; have been several times. Check out the beaches south of you Playa Flamingo and the happening beach town Tamarindo. Another great area is La Fortuna. To see the Arenal Volcano and visit the hot springs plus national parks and other tours. CR has many National Parks; nature hikes and water sports are abundant. The trip to Arenal is several hours of amazing scenery. We enjoy the drive and find ourselves stopping in small towns along the way.
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In that area Rincón de la Vieja is about 1.5 hours away by car, so it's not too bad, really lovely part of the country.