This travel agency was an excellent choice and was a large part of why my trip to Costa Rica was so enjoyable. They created an amazing itinerary which packed everything I wanted to do into a wonderful 7 day adventure. The owner and his lovely wife met us at the airport with our driver. They greeted us, gave us a nice gift bag (wine and candies) and went over some basic information about being in Costa Rica. They took the time to answer our questions about Costa Rica such as using Colones versus Dollars. We were escorted to the drivers van and given a packet with our prepaid vouchers for all of the lodging and activities. The packet also included our itinerary and instructions on contacting them 24 hours a day. During the trip they called several times to check up on us and make sure we were being taken care of. They even went so far as to have the hanging bridges refund my two dollar shoe rental because the hanging bridges did not tell us ahead of time not to wear sandals. I did not call the company and complain they called the hanging bridges to make sure I was at the event and had started the tour. They found out I was charged and successfully inspired the company to give me a refund. That level of service persisted throughout the entire trip. I purchased a hammock while in La Fortuna and was worried about taking it to the airport as it was longer than my check-in bag. They sent me some wrapping materials and gave me advice on how to deal with the oversized item. One of our favorite parts of the experience with our travel agency was the driver that initially picked us up in San Jose (where we overnighted) and subsequently drove us to La Fortuna was so helpful and accommodating, we ask if we could have him pick us up at Monteverde and drive us back to San Jose on our last day. Our travel agency arranged that for us and that made the long drive back to the airport a wonderful ride. The company really paid me a lot of attention and I felt like a VIP the entire trip. I really enjoyed my time in Costa Rica and can not recommend this travel agency enough.
The most enjoyable part of Costa Rica for us was the people. From the tour guides to the locals, everyone was so nice and pleasent to talk to. The tour guides were all really great at making sure you enjoyed the activity. The zipline "monkeys", the hanging bridges guide, and the coffee tour guide were all outstanding. I would like to thank the butterfly tour in Santa Elena in particular. The owner gave us a private tour and was absolutely a joy to talk to. His love of the insects and nature in general was apparent and infectious. I learned an incredible amount and had a wonderful tour. Letting us release some newly hatched butterflies was an amazing moment and was the most memorable part of our trip. It is unbelievable that such a simple thing could be so humbling. Having that Monarch butterfly crawl out into my hand and then take its first flight into the the habitat is something I will never forget.
If I were to do things over again I would spend more time in Monteverde and less time in Arenal. The weather in Monteverde was phenomenal whereas the weather in Arenal was very hot (the heat index for the first two days was 104 F). The prices in Santa Elena, Monteverde were far more reasonable that La Fortuna, Arenal. They both have the same activities available for the most part and Santa Elena did not feel like the tourist trap that La Fortuna did.
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