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Costa Rica

Author elsslots
#1 | Posted: 11 Dec 2020 12:11 
I am contemplating a trip to Costa Rica in March 2021. Maybe someone out there (Esteban?) can help me with the following:

- Of course it is hard to know what the Covid situation will be at that time, but I wonder whether the 3 accessible WHS (Guanacaste, Stone Spheres, Talamanca) and the TWHS of Corcovado are fully open at the moment? I read somewhere that Manuel Antonio has limitations, wonder if these are specific or stretch to other national parks as well.
- For Talamanca, I'd wanted to "do" Chirripo NP but not climb the mountain. Are shorter walks available and is it worth it? Or can you recommend another part of Talamanca to visit?

Probably more questions to follow

Author elsslots
#2 | Posted: 12 Dec 2020 12:35 

Author jeanbon
#3 | Posted: 12 Dec 2020 18:06 
I have an uncle in CR, and i believe he plans himself some tours for tourists. When i've been there, it was not his job, but if you are interested i can ask him (or my cousins) more details. To be honest i have no idea of the quality of his tours but it should be in spanish or french (do you speak one of them?).
But he has a house in Chirripo, so he could give you good tips anyway (no hikking needed in Chirripo in my memories, it's quiet easy to reach the buffer zone). According to my grandmother, he is out of work due to Covid situation as you can guess. I'm not very optimistic for March...

Author elsslots
#4 | Posted: 13 Dec 2020 08:44 | Edited by: elsslots 
Thanks for thinking along, jeanbon, but I'd rather travel without a guide or a tour.

I have made some progress in my itinerary including the Talamanca WHS, will share it here shortly.

Author jeanbon
#5 | Posted: 13 Dec 2020 17:52 
ok, don't hesitate if you want tips anyway

Author vantcj1
#6 | Posted: 15 Dec 2020 11:46 | Edited by: vantcj1 
Hi, Els! I hadn't seen this forum publication, I've had pretty busy months here at work. Believe or not, we were the first Green Building Council in the Americas to have its annual congress online, as a result of COVID-19.

I'll research a little and provide more answers to you, though I think the answer that you found to Question#1 is really good and comprehensive... though I`ll look more in detail for the guidelines regarding individual national parks. Just additionally consider this official source of information:

Of course everything may change before March, especially as vaccination against COVID-19 starts and becomes more widespread, thanks to the Social Security System and the Ministry of Health.

Also don't hesitate to write directly to my e-mail for more information. If you want (and have time for it) I could provide advise also on other locations that are interesting to visit (and non WH-related).

Author elsslots
#7 | Posted: 15 Dec 2020 11:55 
Good to hear from you, vantcj1.
I may reach out to you via e-mail as well, but will share the planned itinerary here so others can comment and "learn" from it too when they are planning a similar trip.

Author elsslots
#8 | Posted: 15 Dec 2020 12:08 | Edited by: elsslots 
My draft itinerary (15 days) is as follows:

1 - Direct flight Amsterdam - San Jose (overnight in San Jose)
2 - San Jose FTWHS National Theatre and National Monument, plus Museo de Oro and Museo Nacional (overnight San Jose)
3 - Pick up car, drive 2h to the ruins of Guayabo National Monument (overnight Orosi)
4 - Visit Parque Nacional Tapanti Macizo de la Muerte (part of Talamanca WHS), Ruins of Ujarras (1580 church FTWHS), Orosi Church (FTWHS) (overnight Orosi)
5 - Drive to Chirripo NP (3.5h) (overnight near Chirripo)
6 - Chirripo NP (also part of Talamanca WHS), dayticket to be booked far beforehand and not sure if worth it when not climbing; otherwise Cloudbridge private nature reserve or other hike in the area (overnight near Chirripo)
7 - Drive to Palmar Norte (2h), visit Diquis WHS (only Finca 6 open Tue - Fri 8-14?) (overnight Sierpe)
8 - Boat Sierpe - Drake Bay 11.30 (runs 2 times a day) (overnight Drake Bay)
9 - Corcovado TWHS, "Rainforest mammal watching does not get any better". 1 day trip or overnight.
10 - Another half day in Corcovado or other tour from Drake (overnight Drake Bay)
11 - Boat back to Sierpe and then drive to Manuel Antonio (2h drive, 1h boat) (overnight Manuel Antonio)
12 - Visit Manuel Antonio NP in the early morning (small and busy, closed mondays). Drive to Liberia after lunch. (overnight near Rincon de la Vieja NP)
13 - Visit Rincon de la Vieja, part of Guanacaste WHS (overnight near Rincon de la Vieja NP)
14 - Another day in Rincon de la Vieja or other nature area near Liberia (overnight near Rincon de la Vieja NP)
15 - Drive back to San Jose (3.5h) and return flight to Amsterdam in afternoon or evening

I will be renting a car - not because I really like it, but it saves me 2-3 days and keeps me in my own little Covid bubble. I've kept beaches out of it (not interested), tried to achieve a mix of culture and nature.

Author Jarek Pokr
#9 | Posted: 17 Dec 2020 09:26 
Hi Els, I was visiting WHS in Costa Rica in November, 2017. All of them are easy to see and organise during normal times.
Diquis - Finca 6 is easy accessible from Palmar Norte (by public transport) - if you have a car it is probably easy to see other places that are nearby - you just need to have a good map with exact locations of the sites. For that the city itself (Palmar Norte) may be a good startin point (there are several hostels/hotels there as well as restaurants/supermarkets).
For Guanacaste good point to start exploration is a town of Liberia. With your car you can easily visit Santa Rosa NP / Guanacaste NP (north-west of Liberia). To Rincon de La Vieja NP you can go on your own or through organised trip - check if it is possible to climb the volcano. Liberia as a town also has descent range of accommodation / restaurants / banks.
Talamanca WHS - I have visited only places in Panama - Las Nubes section.
If there is something I can help you - let me know. Have a nice trip !

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 Costa Rica

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