Travel Advice Needed - Costa Rica

Yes, I know that there is a travel section but, as few people seem to be coming here anymore, I figured that those that do come are more likely to come here.

I am planning a family trip (me, wife, 2 sons) to Costa Rica in late June of this year. We have taken many trips in the US but, this is our first international trip and there is a lot to plan and get right.

Our plans are to land in San Jose, rent a car and drive to Santa Elena/Monteverde to an Air B&B. We plan to spend 4 days there and then drive to Quepos and spend 5 days near Quepos in an Air B&B.

Any recommendations for “must see” places or “must eat at” restaurants at either location would be appreciated.

Additionally, we are planning to fish at least once while in Quepos. We need to decide whether we should fish inshore or offshore. Quepos Fish Adventures has been recommended a a good charter. Any recommendations/suggestions as to whether we should fish inshore of offshore, and any other charters would be appreciated.

As far as airfare, is it best to make arrangements yourself or, use a travel agent? Finding flights with the “right” times is frustrating. Prices seem to change daily.

Any information, tips, suggestions or recommendations as to planning, what to do and how to do it in Costa Rica would be much appreciated.


Wow, that sounds amazing. Good luck with the preparations. Whatever yall come up with is sure to be a great time

Something to think about. Check on medical evacuation insurance. Even if you only need a few stiches from a local pill roller, it can get rather expensive. And God forbid you have something serious the cost of flying you or yours’ back to the states can cost an arm and a leg (no pun intended).

Yeah, thanks. There is a lot more to think about when going out of the country.

Not Costa Rica but I was in Panama for a few weeks . Make sure you have a translate app on your phone. Sayhi was the easiest to use for me. Unless you speak decent Spanish . Driving can be a thrill a minute in Panama at least and I would personally not drive in the major cities. If you go to a site called Expat Exchange and select the country you want to visit , Americans living there may be able to help you. Google earth is great for looking at restaurants, beaches and whatever else. I learned a lot of Spanish reading menus and signs that ended up being helpful.

I have driven in Los Angeles and downtown London. I’m hoping that somewhat prepared me for Costa Rica. Good advice on the translation app. We all speak a tiny bit of Spanish but not fluently. I’ll definitely check out that website.


I`ve driven in LA as well. The problem in some places in Central America is you are a rich gringo.Staged or just a plain accident and you are at fault. Always. I would suggest one of those video cameras for cars just in case. A lot of the cars are pretty beat up and driving safely is just an option for some. When you get away from the coast it can turn 3rd world pretty quick. Not trying to sound like a downer as I enjoyed the couple of weeks I spent in Panama but I always kept aware.

Yeah, I hear you. I have spoken with folks that have driven in CR. I’m sure there are such people everywhere, but from what I hear, CR is probably the most "civilized country in Central America. I will feel better once we get out of downtown San Jose.