Thursday, December 18, 2008

Cost Rica trip

I have so preoccupied by Mr. J that I haven't blogged about my scheduled trip to Costa Rica.

I had hoped girlfriend would accompany me but she can't afford to take time from work. Poor thing has 2 kids in college so money is tight.
i don't have a problem traveling on my own but it sure would have been nice to have company.

I like to travel independently meaning not with an organized tour group. But in some regions and especially being a single woman traveler, an organized tour is better. I did, however, for a brief time considering doing this trip on my own.

After much researched, I booked through a travel company based in Costa Rica called Costarica4me. They offer small groups, no more than 12 in a group. This is awesome because larger groups tend to scare off wildlife. This company has been fantastic and very helpful.

Here is a copy of my itinerary:

Darlene’s Costa Rica Getaway
Feb 3: Welcome to Costa Rica! Upon arrival to Juan Santamaria International Airport, you will be greeted by a Pacific Trade Winds S.A. representative. Private transportation will then be provided to the 4 Star Arenal Springs Resort & Spa located in La Fortuna. This fun little tourist town is located in the shadow of the imposing Arenal Volcano. During your stay, you will enjoy a Junior Suite equipped with your choice of two queen beds or one king size bed, A / C, fan, cable tv, phone, wireless internet, mini-bar, coffee maker, safe box, oversized bathroom with volcanic rock surroundings, hair dryer, and front patio providing an outstanding view of Arenal Volcano. Breakfast included daily. (Rental Car can be substituted for provided transportation. Please see below for difference in pricing.)
Feb 4: Today you will soar through the tree tops of the rainforest on your gondola style Sky Tram adventure. This is a comfortable way to view the wildlife that inhabits the canopy. After Sky Tram, professional bilingual guides will lead you through a series of zipline cables on your Sky Trek Adventure. The canopy zipline is a one of a kind tour which is Costa Rica's most popular adventure activity with thousands participating annually.

Feb 5: Today you will go on a river boat ride down Rio Frio in the wild CaƱo Negro National Park. A bilingual naturalist guide will point out the abundant wildlife, flora & fauna that call this park home. This reserve is another important sanctuary for a wide variety of endangered species. Lunch included.
Feb 6: You will go on an easy hike through the Rainforest, with a bilingual naturalist guide who will point out the abundant wildlife, flora & fauna. When you reach the clearing, you will be at the closest observation point to Arenal Volcano. Being the third most active volcano in the world, Arenal erupts every 5 to 10 minutes. After approximately 45 minutes of viewing, you will be able to visit the geothermally heated Baldi Hot Springs where you will be able to relax & bathe as Arenal erupts in the background.

Feb 7: Our famous Land-Boat-Land transportation to Monteverde. After crossing Arenal Lake which provides some of the best photo ops of the imposing volcano, you will be brought to El Establo Resort. During your stay, you will enjoy a Deluxe Room equipped with 2 Queen size beds with Orthopedic mattresses, Cable TV, Bathrooms with separate bath tub and shower, Safe Deposit Box, Refrigerator, Telephone, Coffee Maker, and Hair dryer. Breakfast included daily.
Feb 8: A bilingual naturalist guide will lead you on an easy hike through the Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve. Your guide will point out and describe many endangered species, as well as educate you on the importance of sustaining this vital reserve. At an average elevation of 1,400 meters, this forest is home to numerous species of wildlife, unique to this area.

Feb 9: Transportation will be provided to The Falls Resort located in Manuel Antonio. This new resort offers a refreshing approach to luxury accommodations in Manuel Antonio. The resort is surrounded by lush tropical gardens and waterfalls, providing a serene environment and splendid views. During your stay, you will enjoy a standard Suite equipped with king size bed, full bath with large walk in shower, cable television with DVD, mini-bar, overhead fan, air conditioning, covered porch with sitting area and a hammock for relaxation. Breakfast included daily.

Feb 10: A bilingual naturalist guide will lead you on a tour of discovery through Manuel Antonio National Park. Along the way your guide will point out the abundant wildlife, flora & fauna. This park plays a vital role in the global environment as it is home to a wide variety of endangered species.
Feb 11: Today you will go on a Catamaran Cruise Coastal Adventure. This is a great way to possibly observe whales, dolphins & sea turtles. After cruising along the beautiful shores of Manuel Antonio, you will stop at a secluded beach to Snorkel above a Tropical, Coral Reef and enjoy a provided Hot Meal.

Later, private transportation will be provided back through the Cloud Forest of the Talamanca Mountains to the Grano de Oro. During your stay, you will enjoy a Superior room. All rooms are furnished in Tropical Victorian styles with wrought-iron beds and rich damask fabrics in three jeweled color schemes - navy, burgundy and forest-green. The art and furnishings are handcrafted by Costa Rican artists. No two rooms are alike. Private baths are blue and white Italian tile adorned with gleaming base fixtures. Breakfast is included daily.

Feb 12: Private transportation will be provided to Juan Santamaria International Airport scheduled to arrive 3 hours prior to your departure.
Pura Vida!

I can't wait to Zipline (canopy tour). Scare. The. Hell. Out. Of. Me.
And that is exactly why I'm doing it.

I have a travel journal and will write about my trip and then transfer when I get home.

BTW, still stuck at work but help is on the way!!


Tiffany said...

That sounds amazing!!! I am so jealous! LOL

Megryansmom said...

I'm jealous too.

Today is Georgie's birthday please go wish her a happy one!

Chocolate Covered Daydreams said...

Sure wish I had vacation and money, I'd be booking right along with you. That looks like so much fun! I'm not sure about the zipline. I'm a chicken when it comes to zipping on some sort of cable like that.

"J" said...

You are still at work...UGH!!! It must be bad over there!!!!

I'm sooooooooooo EXCITED about your trip!!!! It sounds FAB!!!!! =) You are going to have SUCH a blast!!!!

The 4 Star Arenal Springs Resort & Spa sounds WONDERFUL!!!! Just the word SPA in anything sounds WONDERFUL!!!

It's going to be a GREAT trip!!!

Send me a postcard!!!! =) lol

"J" said...

PS - The zipline....I would sooooooooooooooooooo do it with you!!!! That is going to be such a RUSH!!!!!! =)

Soxy Deb said...

That sounds very cool. The zipline especially. I'll be sitting here, probably still laid off with my luck, just thinking about all the fun your having.

Julie said...

Wow, that sounds amazing! I have always wanted to zipline, so I guess I'll just live vicariously through you!

Vinnie Sorce said...

I have a friend who is doing a development there, I handle the website. if you're curious. Have fun!!

georgie said...

one word AMAZING!!!!

Amanda said...

I'm just starting to look at prices for Costa girlfriend was able to get practically free airfare...

can you give me an estimate of about how much your entire trip is going to cost?

thank you!