Published: December, 2017
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Papagayo, Costa Rica

Truly great even for a weekend away!
— Stephanie Breitbard
  • More about your oliver guide:
  • Trip type: Family, Beach
  • Activity level: moderate
  • Ideal length of trip: ONE WEEK

to & from

Fly into Liberia airport from the US. Many domestic carriers (Delta, United, Jet Blue) fly to Costa Rica.

Where to Stay

  • Andaz in Papagayo: Remote, tree covered beach where you can hop onto jet skis and go to uninhabited islands all over. Monkeys every day in the trees throughout. Great gym and spa. Three amazing restaurants. Kids zone. Great pool area with self-serve icee's. Gorgeous rooms. Truly great even for a weekend away!
  • Rafiki Safari Lodge Savegre: This is a MUST. Only about 13 cabins, all tented and in the jungle. Not easy to get to-- call the hotel and they can arrange transport. Highlights include: the country's fastest water slide (and 3rd fastest in world), a hot tub in the rain forest and an expert birder available for guided walks. This lodge also operates a great white water rafting trip nearby during which you take a short walk to swim in amazing waterfalls. Truly a unique experience deep in the jungle that is 100% worth the trek. (The sounds of wildlife are especially loud at night so bring ear-plugs.)
  • Alma del Pacifico Beach Hotel and Spa: Not super high-end but colorful and lovely. About 10 rooms, each it's own villa directly on the beach. The beach goes on for miles and is empty. Great beach mountain biking and horseback riding which can be arranged by the hotel. Amazing restaurant.

Where to Eat and Drink

  • We tended to eat at the restaurants in our hotels instead of going out. They were delicious and diverse.
  • Café Milagro in Manuel Antonio in town of Quepos. A little coffee shop with best coffee. Nice local experience

What to Do

  • Canopy Safari Quepos: Best zip-line operation and more remote and up in the jungle than others. Longer zip-lines and better system so you don't get stuck and have to real yourself back to the platform! Kids can go alone instead of attached to a guide.

inside scoop

Don’t bother going to Volcano Arenal or Manuel Antonio Park – both are very touristy.

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