From their first response to our enquiry, we had confidence that this travel agency had understood what we were looking for, from our trip to Costa Rica. They worked with us to fine-tune our itinerary and hotel choices, and made valuable suggestions when we were unsure of the best options. They responded promptly to all of our emails and phone calls before we left England, and were equally available throughout our time on Costa Rica. When they say that they are contactable 24/7, they really mean it.
On arrival in Costa Rica, we were met by the co-owner and his wife as well as our driver - this was a truly personal touch and showed their commitment to looking after us. They kept in contact throughout our trip - for example, speaking to us during internal transfers between the different places we visited. We felt confident that our travel agency would be there to solve any problems that may arise, and as with any extended trip, we did have a couple of problems. When we both picked up local virus, our travel agency arranged for the hotel to take us to a local clinic for treatment.
They offered an outstanding service when we missed an internal flight, due to heavy traffic, by arranging a private charter flight to ensure that we could reach our next destination. We were extremely happy with the standard of all of the vehicles and drivers that our travel agency used and felt completely safe on the roads. We enjoyed all of our destinations and the accommodation was excellent (with only one exception: our cloud forest lodge in the Bajos del Toro area which was very cold at night, as there was no heating. It really needed some).
In summary, this company are the best agents that we have ever used and we have no reservation in recommending them most highly.
The best place we stayed was in the Osa Peninsula. The most amazing location, great food and wonderful wildlife. Tapirs and coaties were visitors to the hotel grounds, along with a wide variety of birds, including scarlet macaws. We also enjoyed snorkelling and kayaking there. Arrival is by boat only and that was a great experience in itself. We saw a huge crocodile in the surf, which gave us a bit of a frisson too!
The hummingbirds at our lodge in Bajos del Toro were wonderful and we saw at least 11 varieties. Being woken by the howler monkeys at several locations, (even though it was early) was also very special. The hanging bridges trip in the Arenal area also introduced us to some amazing species, including a Fer de Lance snake; the most dangerous in Central America. The toucans were great and we saw many of them. We did a 'frog' night walk and were lucky to see nine different varieties, including the red-eyed tree frog and a blue jeans frog. Relaxing for a final few days near Uvita, was a great end to the holiday. We spend a couple of days lazing on the beach in the little surfer town of Dominical, which was great.
First of all we would definitely spend more time on the Osa Peninsula; the lodge was fantastic and 3 days is just not long enough (5 days min). Unless it was the turtle season, we probably wouldn't go to Tortuguero, as we felt there was not a lot to see and all tours are very busy. We prefer private or small tour groups. Unfortunately, we were also unlucky with the weather there, as the first few days of our trip co-incided with a fierce cold front with its lashing rain and high winds..We might instead choose to visit the Guanacaste region or the south Caribbean coast instead. However, you can only do so much in 19 days.
Finally, we would carefully choose our accommodation in the cloud forest making sure that it had heating. In spite of its great location and lovely staff our stay in the lodge in Bajos del Toro will always be associated with very cold and damp evenings and nights - great shame.
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