(Closed) Tropical vacations for outdoorsy couple

posted 6 years ago in Travel
Post # 17
Member
2066 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: February 2014

also, just wanted to add. i am dying to do machu picchu. is that something you could consider?

Post # 18
Member
2514 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: February 2015

@MichiganGirl24:  It’s a few hours.  I’ve been to Guanacaste and La Tortugero as well as Monteverde, La Fortuna/Arenal, Sarapiqui, Manuel Antonio… Guanacaste is a nice beachy area.  There are tons of very cool things to see and do in CR.  If you go to La Fortuna/Arenal definitely look up Desafio.  They’re an adventure company.  I’ve done pretty much everything they’ve offerred and had a blast doing it all.  Fantastic company, I can’t recommend them enough.  And check out the Volcano Lodge to stay while you’re there.  It was the best place I’ve stayed in the entire country.  The staff were unbelievably friendly there (they were fantastic all around the country, but they were above and beyond nice.)  The hot springs at Baldi are a nice night too.  The food is meh, but the springs are lovely.   🙂  And make sure you try the waterslide! I haven’t been to the spa there, but my friend went and loved it.  The mud masks are apparently amazing for your skin.

I’m not a beach girl, and if we go I’m surfing, paddle boarding, kayaking, etc.  So our beach days were few and far between.  I hope someone has actual recommendations for you for beach places.  I wouldn’t recommend the hotel we stayed in.  

 

Post # 19
Member
2066 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: February 2014

The pacific coast of CR doesn’t have a lot of like white sand beaches and crystal clear water… i always warn people of that before they go so they’re not disappointed. I spend a lot of time in Jaco because my dad has a condo there… before he bought the condo we would stay at the Marriott Los Suenos (which is very americanized) but it has a great little private beach. Jaco in general is kinda a dirty little surfer town but I really like it and the beaches aren’t bad. Nicer beaches are in the Manuel Antonio park… so you can spend some time at those if you want to relax a bit!

Another reco would be to do CR and also hit up the caribbean coast of Panama. There’s a great little town called Bocas del Toro. Nature air flies out of CR and into Bocas frequently for pretty great prices. Bocas has more beautiful, caribbean waters…. and tons of little islands you can take water taxis to and stay overnight to get some beach time in. I did a tour from there that involved Dolphin bay (amaaaazing… could practically touch the wild dolphins that swam along with our boat) and Red Frog Beach. It was amazing and I really loved Panama.

Post # 20
Member
1210 posts
Bumble bee

@MichiganGirl24:  My vote would be for Kauai. Its a little more expensive to get there, but there is SO much to do. If you love hiking, surfing, snorkeling or just generally exploring, you will love Kauai. Plus, they do have some beautiful beaches if thats your thing too.

My avatar pic is from a hike we did in Kauau (Kalalau Trail). We hiked in, camped on the beach, and hiked out the next day. It was a once-in-a-lifetime experience – we loved it. You can check out some YouTube videos of the hike too as its pretty well known.

Post # 21
Member
9129 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: August 2013 - Rocky Mountains USA

One last thought, Puerto Rico is also an amazing place with a variety of outdoorsy activities.  Fishing, snorkeling, going out in a boat at night to see the bioluminescene (so cool), hiking in the rainforest, kayaking, going out to Vieques Island, etc.  It’s inexpensive there, and they speak English (plus Spanish) if the language barrier is an issue.  

Post # 23
Member
2066 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: February 2014

@MichiganGirl24:  I’ve only been to puerto viejo in costa rica but i didn’t really love that area of the country much. it was pretty desolate, when i was there. not a lot of places to eat/things to do. not sure if it’s grown since i was there or if there is other areas i should have checked out so i can’t speak to that… which is why i recommended bocas. i really loved it!

no worries if machu picchu wouldn’t be your thing. totally get that… costa rica would be a great option for you i think!

Post # 24
Member
58 posts
Worker bee

We really liked Puerto Vallarta Mexico, we stayed at Secrets/Now Amber. The resort was great and all inclusive, and loved laying on the beach having fruity drinks delivered to my chair. There was also some great hiking we did on our own (hike from Boca to Las Animas), it was a great hike that would go in and out of the jungle down to secluded beaches. There is a unique botanical gardens that involves a lot of hiking. There was also great fishing and a lot of nice cultural things to do in town. If you end up going to PV, let me know and I can send you some info and recommendations. The Vallarta Eats tour was the best food tour we’ve ever done!

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