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Old 11-23-2004, 07:32 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Female traveling alone in Costa Rica?

Hi all, I've just started to take a look at this idea, but I'm thinking of taking a trip to Costa Rica sometime in the next few months. You know, I thought I'd climb a volcano or two and check out the birds and all that tropical magic. The only problem is, I'm not so sure there'd be anybody to accompany me, so I'm thinking about going by myself. I'd like to hear some feedback from people who've been there as to how good or bad of an idea this is, or if there are any particular places to avoid or go to. What do you think?
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Old 11-24-2004, 01:58 AM   #2 (permalink)
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There have been stray but fatal incidents in the past few years involving female hitchhikers. Check the old travel advisories by the State Deptt.
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Old 11-24-2004, 06:28 PM   #3 (permalink)
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First question I always ask is how much traveling have you done on your own, and do you speak the language..

If the answer is a little, and no, then I'd not recommend it.. If you have experience in either of the above then I'd say do it, as long as you know the risks.

I've managed to travel many places with no problems, and I've also been robbed while sleeping in a park during the Love Parade in Berlin, I guess it comes with the benefits of traveling..

Have fun!
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Old 11-29-2004, 06:09 AM   #4 (permalink)
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just got back!

my wife & i were in costa rica 11/13-21........we had a pretty rough go of it, but i think it was just a really bad run of luck. the first 3 days were really rainy, but we were in a beautiful spot (www.waterfallgardens.com/lapaz-peacelodge.htm) so it was nice anyway. then i got some sort of fever that knocked me out for two days, and then we had a 6.2 earthquake!!

all that aside, it is a gorgeous country with very friendly people. every hotel we stayed (3 in all) had well organized excursions every day, sometimes involving other nearby hotels, so you would never have to do anything alone if you didn't want to.

they are just coming out of the rainy season, so the weather is on your side for the next 5-6 months.

i can tell you more if you are interested.......
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Old 11-29-2004, 07:01 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jimk
my wife & i were in costa rica 11/13-21........we had a pretty rough go of it, but it think it was just a really bad run of luck. the first 3 days were really rainy, but we were in a beautiful spot (www.waterfallgardens.com/lapaz-peacelodge.htm) so it was nice anyway. then i got some sort of fever that knocked me out for two days, and then we had a 6.2 earthquake!!

all that aside, it is a gorgeous country with very friendly people. every hotel we stayed (3 in all) had well organized excursions every day, sometimes involving other nearby hotels, so you would never have to do anything alone if you didn't want to.

they are just coming out of the rainy season, so the weather is on your side for the next 5-6 months.

i can tell you more if you are interested.......
Yes I am quite interested, that's kind of what I was hoping for - someone who could steer me in the right direction or advise me on where to go or what to avoid. Like those organized excursions, while usually not my thing, sound like they might be perfect, at least for the first time there.

I've been doing some online research and it doesn't sound like the sort of place where I'd be raped and mugged as soon as I got off my airplane.

I hope your trip was worth it, aside from the disasters. It sucks being sick in a foreign country!
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Old 11-30-2004, 03:41 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Squishor
,,,,,,

I've been doing some online research and it doesn't sound like the sort of place where I'd be raped and mugged as soon as I got off my airplane.
No you would'nt but one should he cautious. All decent hotels have organised excursions. you should avoid SJO, the city; there isn't much to do. In the central valley; there volcanos, butterfly farms, rain forests,dry forests; also slightly up north there is the Arenal Volcano and Tabacon hot springs.
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Old 12-02-2004, 09:59 AM   #7 (permalink)
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we spent the first 3 nights at that peace lodge place, which was awesome. the rooms were great, and they had a cool waterfall trail & butterfly garden & hummingbird garden all on the property. daily trips to the arenal volcano were $80 a person. white water rafting, horseback riding, and "zip line" forest canopy tours were also easily bookable.

i understand your concern about organized trips......worried they'll be cheesy, right? because of costa rica's rep as an "eco-tourism" spot, there are plenty of action-guy type day trips that are very exciting and/or physically challenging. you will see scads of surfer & crunchy types there for these more adventurous tours. there are also bird & butterfly-watching tours for the bluehairs, so you can pick your own speed.

the rest of the week we were midway down the pacific coast, near quepos & the manuel antonio national park. makanda was an absolutely stunning place to stay, kind of pricey - my wife & i used frequent flier miles, so that freed us up to pay up for accomodations. as many collegiate types as i saw there, though, there must be plenty of budget friendlier places to stay.

with what i heard from other people, we were in one of the more touristy spots in the country (manuel antonio), and it was still pretty cool. on the southern edge of the pacific coast and most of the carribbean coast it's supposed to be a bit less populated & more rugged.

i definitely recommend the $50 airplane hops from region to region if you're going to see a few different areas in the country. the roads are horrendous. i usually like to drive in foreign countries, but i am SO glad i didn't rent a car there!
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Last edited by jimk; 12-02-2004 at 10:02 AM..
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Old 12-04-2004, 10:44 AM   #8 (permalink)
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I got a tropical illness in costa rica - apparently the water isn't as good as it seems. Otherwise, Costa Rica is fine. I was with a group, but I was staying with host families so it was overall pretty decent. Stay away from big cities like the capital and you should be fine. Costa Rica is, after all, the switzerland of central america.
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Old 12-16-2004, 06:53 PM   #9 (permalink)
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I've found that many of the men in central and south america are much more willing to blatantly harass women...especially if they are alone.
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