Costa Rica Honeymoon

3 of the Most Unique Wedding Venues in Costa Rica

All-inclusive wedding resorts are unsurprisingly popular with couples who head to Costa Rica to exchange their vows. Tailor-made to provide full services – from accommodation for all guests, scrumptious feasting, wedding cakes and spectacular views – the country’s most beautiful resorts certainly offer unforgettable options for your Costa Rica wedding.

Are you looking for something a little different? You got it! In Central America’s most spectacular country, your big day venue can be as distinctive as you are.

Here are 3 of the Most Unique Wedding Venues in Costa Rica.

Tie the Knot in a Private Villa

Booking a private villa for your Costa Rica destination is a wonderful option if you still want luxury and comfort, but with the added bonus of privacy and intimacy. Not only do you and your guests get to experience a truly authentic vacation but some of the options are even more affordable than many resorts, most especially if you have quite a few guests attending your big day. Costa Rica boasts some magnificent villas for hire, which can cater for groups of anywhere from 5 to 50 guests. What’s more, although with a private villa you will have to organize all the added extras on your own, most come with in-house planners, so you’ll be getting the convenience of a resort wedding anyway.

Check out the three options on BarefootVacationVillas to get a taste of what you can expect of a luxury villa set amongst stellar landscapes, or the exceptional Villa Punto de Vista (a magnificent 10-bedroom villa designed specifically for destination weddings) as well as Casa Fantastica, one of the sought-after private estates in the country.

 

Costa Rica villa

 

(Photo courtesy of CostaRicaWeddingDestinations.com)

Say ‘I do’ Next to Breathtaking Waterfalls

The La Paz Waterfalls Gardens offer one of the most spectacular photo backdrop of all: five cascading waterfalls framed by luscious tropical wilderness brimming with a myriad of exotic birds. This eco-lodge is only an hour out of San Jose (perfect for long-weekend weddings) and is ideal for nature-loving romantics. Beautifully set among a pristine natural landscape, this incredible resort also boasts a butterfly observatory, as well as a wedding coordinator who’ll organize your perfect day from beginning to end.

Costa Rica waterfall

(Photo courtesy La Paz Waterfall Gardens & Peace Lodge)

 

Get Married Aboard a Catamaran

For a totally out-there Costa Rica wedding, nothing beats getting married aboard a luxury catamaran. The King Catamaran is a popular choice for young and energetic couples who want to kick off their married life with a big splash (sometimes literally) and what’s an incredible plus about them, is that they are experienced wedding planners and can actually take care of all your wedding plans, both on and off the catamaran. From the rehearsal dinner to the accommodation, photos and video on the day and, of course, a spectacular catamaran cruise for the ceremony.

Costa Rica catamaran wedding

(Photo courtesy of TheKingCatamaran)

Exchange your vows on a glistening Costa Rica beach

The most iconic of all tropical wedding venues would have to be a stretch of pristine beach. Luckily, Costa Rica, has tonnes of them! The Pacifico Beach Club is unlike any other resort and plans some of the most outrageously beautiful beach weddings you could ever dream. Located right on the shores of Playas del Coco on the northwest coast, PBC is perfect if you’re looking for a one-stop paradise that you and your wedding guests will absolutely love. The in-house wedding coordinator will make your life ridiculously easy, and you can rest easy knowing that the restaurant for your wedding reception is one of the best rated in the country. Walk down the sandy isle to exchange vows under a tropical flower covered arch, enjoy your cocktails and appetizers as the sun descends over the crimson horizon, and have a fantastic wedding party that we’re sure you’ll never forget.

Costa Rica beach wedding

 

 

 

 

 

(Photo courtesy of PacificoBeachClub)

And when vows are exchanged and photos taken…let us whisk you away to a dream Costa Rica honeymoon vacation that’ll be the ideal cherry atop your extraordinary wedding cake.

Tweet about this on TwitterShare on FacebookShare on LinkedInEmail to someoneGoogle+Share on StumbleUpon

Cute Romantic Ideas for Costa Rica Honeymoon

Costa Rica honeymoonThere’s no denying that Costa Rica is tailor-made for romantic getaways and that’s why the country’s simply brimming with brilliant ideas for honeymooning couples. There’s something about the idyllic tropical settings, perfect year-round temperatures, and spectacular landscapes that make the heart flutter at twice the usual speed. Add a week or two of exceptional experiences, and the company of your beloved, and you’ve got yourself a Costa Rica honeymoon made in heaven.

Here are just some of the top things to do to make you – and your loved one – swoon in delight.

Take a Sunset Catamaran Tour

Costa Rica catamaranTake a sunset, add a sexy catamaran, a glass of champagne and a spectacular horizon.

What do you get?

Arguably the most romantic outing imaginable. Sunset catamaran tours abound on Costa Rica’s Pacific Coast, especially along the Guanacaste Province, and if you’re looking for that kick-start to your honeymoon vacation you really couldn’t pick a better activity. Blue Dolphin Sailing run their trips out of Playa Tamarindo and offer a great selection of tours, from morning to all day, and afternoons (with sunset), as well as public and private sailing charters. With a fully-stocked open bar (free flowing guaro, vodka, beer and juices), a selection of delicious local appetizers, and snorkel gear and kayaks, an afternoon out at sea can offer you a truly magical excursion. Do note that public tours can accommodate up to 40 passengers, so do splurge on a private charter for added privacy and intimacy.e that public tours can accomodate hna norkel gear and kayaks, as well as public and private sailing cruises.

Romantic Dinner for Two

Manuel Antonio National Park honeymoonFrom a table set on the shores of a deserted beach, to one embedded in the canopy of a luscious rain forest, Costa Rica’s romantic dining options are reason enough to head here on honeymoon. Montezuma’s Playa de los Artistas perfectly embodies that romantic dining experience for which Costa Roca is so revered: stunning, unpretentious and totally unforgettable. The food it out of this world, beachside location idyllic and candle-lit tables for two tucked between palm trees just perfect.

For elevated killer views, head up to Café Agua Azul right in the heart of the Manuel Antonio Nature Reserve, where the meals are deliciously casual and the views take your breath away. The laid back setting and no-fuss menu belies the quality of the food (the fresh seafood and enormous burgers are fantastic) but if anything, they highlight the fact that all eyes should be on that sensational panoramic coastal view.

Thrilling Horseback Ride

Costa Rica horseback ridingThere’s a perfectly good reason why so many Mills & Boon romance novels featured photos of a couple horse-riding across an impossibly beautiful landscape. That whole scene just screams ROMANCE! Well, if there’s one thing Costa Rica does with gusto, aside the WOW sunsets, it would have to be the horse-riding tours. And some even combine the two for an ultra-romantic experience that would make Fabio proud!

One of the crowd favorites is the horseback ride to La Fortuna Waterfall in Arenal with Alberto’s Horses, a brilliant and thrilling excursion traversing rivers and crossing forests, before arriving for a refreshing swim in one of Costa Rica’s most beautiful waterfalls. For a comprehensive horse-riding adventure, head to Mal Pais where you can enjoy a three-hour ride across meadows, mountains, and forests, ending at the beach at sunset. Small but very well run, Sunrise Ranch is one of the best secrets in the region and comes highly recommended. They can cater any ride to suit your level of experience (and nervousness, if any) and will guide you through some outback trails that are a splendor to explore on a four-legged steed.

Soak in Hot Thermal Spring

Costa Rica thermal springIn a country with so much volcanic activity, it’s only natural to find an abundance of pure therapeutic hot thermal springs. Just the antidote to those sore legs after a whole day horseback riding with your love. The uber-famous Tabacon Grand Spa in Arenal was the country’s very first establishment of its kind and still retains top honors for offering a stupendously romantic soaking experience.

Their thermal springs are swoon-worthy, and unlike other establishments – which must pump their thermal water through the ground – Tabacon’s pools and waterfalls are entirely natural. Plenty of pools, quiet corners, hidden bars (and convenient day-passes) make this the country’s #1 choice for a romantic soak for two. Yet the region around the Arenal Volcano is certainly not the only one where you’ll find blissful thermal springs, although it is the favored. All the regions near Rincon de la Vieja Volcano (try the Vandara Hot Springs), Miravalles (the Rio Perdido pools are extraordinary) and Irazu also boast beautiful therapeutic spas and pools.

Share an all-out Adrenaline Adventure

Sarapiqui RiverSharing a week-long adrenaline rush adventure, intertwined with plenty of romantic dining, spa-indulging and togetherness, is one of the most popular honeymoon options in the country. And why not? With the sheer choice of active options, from white-water rafting, to zip lining, abseiling, kayaking and more, and an abundance of varied add-ons, planning an adventure honeymoon in Costa Rica is superbly easy.

And that’s where we come in! At Costa Rica Rios, we love nothing more than to plan your dream Costa Rica honeymoon vacation. Just have a look at all the terrific tours on offer or give us the chance to tailor-make a trip that will guarantee to be the most memorable vacation you’ve ever had.

Tweet about this on TwitterShare on FacebookShare on LinkedInEmail to someoneGoogle+Share on StumbleUpon

Part II: Costa Rica Vacation – Accommodation to Suit All Tastes and Budgets

Costa Rica accommodation Los LagosOne of the main reasons so many people love holidaying in Costa Rica is that the range of accommodation, spread out throughout every province, is simply superb. Whether you’re on a tight budget or looking forward to an enviable splurge, you’ll find a wide range of accommodation options no matter where you wish to go.

Here are just a few of our fave picks. It’s just a taste of the kind of hotels and lodges you can expect to find in this magnificent country.

Alajuela Province: Maquenque EcoLodge – Amazing value-for-money

Costa Rica Maquenque Eco LodgeTravelers who explore Costa Rica with a rental car will find the tranquility of Maquenque, along with its breathtaking setting, absolutely blissful. Set on 60 hectares of outstanding wilderness, this EcoLodge is quite unrivalled, most especially given the affordable rates.

The collection of tree houses and bungalows, all set within pristine surroundings, grant a ‘middle-of-nowhere’ Costa Rica experience, yet still provide all the mod-cons to keep comfort and luxury at a premium. The in-house restaurant serves amazing food, the pool is perfect for a refreshing dip, and the chances for nature walks and canoeing in the lake add that extra active incentive. Although lounging in a hammock and listening to the cacophony of sound compliments of the resident birds is certainly not a shabby way to spend the day…

Cartago Province: Hotel Villa Florencia – Mid-range

Costa Rica Hotel Villa FlorenciaWith Turrialba Volcano as a stellar backdrop, Hotel Villa Florencia is a wonderful choice if you wish for some rest and relaxation in quiet rural surroundings. Renowned for its great service, delicious food and top amenities – including a delicious pool in which you’ll want to while away an entire afternoon, Villa Florencia is a small, cozy, tucked-away haven that’s just a perfect base for sightseeing, hiking and jungle walks. This mid-range hotel is less than an hour out of San Jose and offers a plethora of day trips and activities, so if you wish to spend a few extra days here you can indulge in great coffee plantation tours and a visit to the nearby Guayabo archaeological site.

Guanacaste Province: Rio Perdido – Splurge

Costa Rica Rio PerdidoRio Perdido is one of those resorts that’ll make you want to go back home, pack your most cherished belongings, and move to Costa Rica for good. It’s really that beautiful. If you’re looking for that special splurge during your Costa Rica vacation, you really couldn’t do any better than this place.

From the floodlit pools tucked below elevated wooden bungalows, to the attention to detail evident in every room, this eco-friendly complex is set in the heart of a riverside forest and boast only 20 bungalows over an area of more than 600 acres. This isn’t just experiencing nature: it’s living, breathing, smelling and hearing it at every turn. The 5* service and amenities are top-notch, and the convenient 1hr shuttle from Liberia Airport make it an easy place to reach. Want to totally detox and recharge when visiting Costa Rica? This is the place you’ll want to spend the last few days in the country, we assure you. And because this is Costa Rica, a ‘splurge’ here will cost about half of what you’d expect. Seriously! Check out these amazing rates and see for yourself. Why does everyone love vacationing in Costa Rica? Because luxury, adventure, comfort, and wilderness, costs barely a fraction of what it does anywhere else.

At Costa Rica Ros, we strive to include accommodation in stunning eco-lodges and hotels which reflect our environment-loving credo and gift you a totally unforgettable experience. Check out the wonderful accommodation we include in our tours and discover how easy, convenient and affordable it is to combine adventurous explorations and memorable stays in beautiful lodges.

Part I: Costa Rica Vacation – Getting Here is Now Faster…and Cheaper!
Part III: Costa Rica Vacation – Family Adventure Vacation
Part IV: Costa Rica Vacation – Wedding and Honeymoon

Tweet about this on TwitterShare on FacebookShare on LinkedInEmail to someoneGoogle+Share on StumbleUpon

How to Find the Best Planner for Your Costa Rica Wedding

Costa Rica weddingAnyone who’s ever planned a wedding will attest to it being a tad stressful. There are 101 things to think about, all simultaneously, and 101 more that will slip one’s mind until the time it becomes obvious that they have been all but forgotten. When you plan a wedding abroad, however, you can just about quintuple the stress! Not only do you have countless things to think about and organize, but you and your wedding venue manager, cake maker, florist, make-up artist and string quartet are in different countries. How on earth does one organize a seamlessly beautiful and breathtaking wedding in Costa Rica?! With a fantastic wedding planner, that’s how.

Costa Rica wedding planners are renowned for being exceptional at what they do. They live in a country that has become the epitome backdrop for a destination wedding, and they have the know-how to make your special day something extraordinary.

Need some help scoring that one-in-a-million-planner that will make your day an unforgettable experience?

We’re here to help.

To Plan or Not to Plan

Costa Rica weddingMany couples will indeed be wondering if they can actually organize their Costa Rica wedding without a local planner. The short answer is ‘Yes, you can!’ yet the more comprehensive response would be ‘Of course you can, yet you may find it too time-consuming and stressful to make going it alone worthwhile’. Whilst many resorts in Costa Rica offer wedding packages which include reception dinner, flowers, wedding cake and the likes, you will be left to organize quite a few things on your own. Moreover, if you wish to do anything out of the norm, like have a beach wedding or organize a full week-long event held in a private villa, a little external help will be not just helpful, but rather essential.

Dedicated Costa Rica wedding planners are adept at bringing all the pieces of the puzzle together effortlessly, leaving you and your beloved to simply show up, make your vows, and celebrate. The best part? Hiring a wedding planner in Costa Rica costs just a fraction of what it does at home, making their services even more enticing.

Locate the Perfect Costa Rica Wedding Planner

Costa Rica weddingTrusting the most important day of your life to a complete stranger may be daunting, we know. Yet there are plenty of things you can do to ensure you catch yourself a priceless ally. Someone who understands you, knows your likes and dislikes and totally gets where you’re coming from. Someone on your wavelength. To this end, here’s our list of tips and hints to help you find that perfect Costa Rica wedding planner match made in heaven:

  1. Trust personal recommendations – with a tiny grain of salt. Professionalism, great communication skills and competency are the main attributes you ought to look for in a wedding planner. Everything else, becomes very objective. Just because your friend just lured her wedding planner in Costa Rica, it doesn’t mean you’ll be able to build the same rapport with him/her. You can’t expect the same result just because you choose the same wedding planner. Costa Rica destination weddings are always unique, as is every couple, and your aim is to find a planner that’s just right for the two of you. Recommendations are wonderful and should be graciously accepted, but don’t rely on them completely. Contact as many planners as you can and make your decision based on your heart and gut feeling, primarily.
  2. Make sure you and your planner can communicate well The great majority of the time, you’ll be communicating with your planner via email. It is imperative that you understand each other and can communicate well. Perhaps you speak Spanish fluently, but if you don’t, you really ought to ensure your planner can express her/himself clearly in English. A slight misunderstanding via email can translate into a huge disappointment on your big day.
  3. Know what you’re getting Be very clear and knowledgeable about what you planner can and can’t organize. Ask your planner to make a precise list of what they can do for you, and to outline what is needed for a Costa Rica wedding (they will know this) and the details with which they cannot help.
  4. Only choose a planner who’ll be there on your wedding day Make sure your wedding planner and the whole planning team will be on hand to take care of your special day on the actual day. They must be there, from beginning, to end. If they can’t – because they are booking 4 weddings on the same day – look for someone else. You will only have a stress-free day if you know your planner will be by your side and available to fix any problems should they arise.
  5. Experience and accreditation are a must Choose a wedding planner who’s been at it for a while, a few years at least, and who is certified and a member of the Costa Rica Tourism Board.
  6. Short of ideas? Ask your planner! They are a boundless source of info and creative ideas, and can incorporate a myriad of crazy beautiful wishes into your event. Never mistake your wedding planner for a simple logistical facilitator: these guys are artists. They have visions, experiences and know what works best where and when.
  7. Trust is key Once you find a planner you absolutely adore….trust them. When it comes to planning unique and amazing wedding in Costa Rica, they really do know best.

Before heading out into the virtual yonder to seek your one-of-a-kind wedding planner, you may appreciate a little more info:

*Want to know when you should plan to get married? Read our Guide on How to Time Your Costa Rica Wedding Right

*Want to know the legalities involved in getting married here? Read our Everything You Need to Know About Costa Rica Destination Wedding Guide

*Want to know what the best part of a Costa Rica weeding is? Then do read our guide to Planning the Perfect Bespoke Honeymoon in Costa Rica

Tweet about this on TwitterShare on FacebookShare on LinkedInEmail to someoneGoogle+Share on StumbleUpon

Planning a Wedding in Costa Rica? Discover How to Time it Right!

Costa Rica weddingCosta Rica is one of the most unique wedding destinations on the planet and offers some of the most spectacular wedding backdrops in the world. Whether you choose to get married on an idyllic beach, at the base of an active volcano or, perhaps, in the heart of a pristine forest, you’re bound to make some truly unforgettable memories here. Although the country is small and compact, it boasts a dozen micro-climates, meaning that no matter what time of year you wish to get married, there will always be an ‘ideal’ spot in which to hold the wedding. That said, you may have your heart set on a specific place – be it on the Caribbean Coast, the Pacific, or in the highlands – so it pays to understand Costa Rica’s seasonal changes.

Overview

By and large, when it comes to weddings, the whole of Costa Rica thrives from January to May. This is the ‘dry’ season, a time of year when the whole country is just abuzz with tourist activity due to the stellar climate. Fabulously gorgeous, these months are very popular, so if you’re planning a Costa Rica wedding at this time you must book ahead. Mid-April to May is a perfect time to hold your wedding, as not only will you still enjoy an ideal climate, but it will be the start of the low-season and you’ll find excellent deals on planners and venues.

Costa Rica weddingHaving said this, don’t discount the ‘green season’, between June and November. This is, after all, one of the world’s most bio-diverse countries, and life is sustained by rain, a lot of rain, and yes even during the so-called ‘dry’ months. No matter when or where you plan to get married, there’s isn’t a wedding planner in Costa Rica who can guarantee you’ll see no rain on your wedding day. But, out here, rains are short and sweet and can make for spectacular wedding photos!

If you can, try to avoid planning a wedding in Costa Rica for the week of Christmas and New Year, and that of Easter. These are the busiest times of year, when all attractions are jam-packed and many wedding-related businesses shut down for their holidays. Overall, you’ll do yourself a huge favor if you can steer clear of these peak times.

January to May – The Central Pacific region and western coastline are thriving in the first few months of the year, and because this is ideal wedding weather you can expect prices to also be the highest they’ll be all year long. Nevertheless, your wedding and honeymoon in Costa Rica are a once-in-a-lifetime highlight, so if you wish for perfection then getting married in these months should be in your plans. If you simply cannot live without a sunset beach wedding ceremony, then this is the time of year to come!

June to mid-September – Most of Costa Rica is still going strong this time of year, and you’ll have optimal chances for enjoying good weather no matter where you go.

**July & August – These months are quite special in Costa Rica; locals call this the ‘little summer’, a dry spell just before the start of the big rains. La Fortuna and Guanacaste regions are resplendent now, and as short bursts of rains usually only appear on the afternoon, you’ll be fine if planning a stunning morning wedding. Do keep in mind, however, that along with the ‘little summer’ come ‘little price hikes’, so keep this in mind; not just for the cost of your wedding, but for costs of airfares and accommodation for your wedding guests as well.

Mid-September to October – Costa Rica’s Caribbean side is at its driest during these months, thanks to the sheltering mountain range which traverse the country. Dreaming of a superlative beach wedding in one of the country’s most delightful and lesser-visited spots? Then check out the treasures this side of the country has to offer, right here! Many people steer clear of holding weddings in Costa Rica during this time of year, but if you stick to the eastern half of the country you’ll be blown away by how idyllic it can be.

Nicoya Peninsula weddingNovember to December – Right now would be a perfect time to plan a wedding in the Nicoya Peninsula. This is one of Costa Rica’s ‘wildest’ nooks and brimming with insanely picturesque forests, sparkling yet rugged coastlines and amazing wedding venues.

Once you’ve set your wedding date, chat to us about planning your perfect, tailor-made honeymoon in Costa Rica…because if there’s one thing Costa Rica does even better than unique weddings, it’s romantic, adventurous and luxurious honeymoons!

Tweet about this on TwitterShare on FacebookShare on LinkedInEmail to someoneGoogle+Share on StumbleUpon

Plan the Perfect Bespoke Honeymoon in Costa Rica

honeymoonThere are some things in life where you need to compromise, but your honeymoon should not be one of them. This once-in-a-lifetime vacation is more than just a holiday: it’s the start of your married life with your sweeter half.

The chance to leave it all behind, symbolically start a new chapter in your life and, while you’re at, also unwind from the stresses of wedding preparations. So do you really want to spend time researching, booking confirming, triple confirming and then still worry?

Didn’t think so.

This is precisely the reason we at Costa Rica Rios specialize in customized honeymoon packages, so all you have to do is pack, show up, and have the time of your life.

Honeymoon 101…Before You Go

Why is Costa Rica such a popular honeymoon destination? Because it’s insanely convenient (only a 5.5hr flight from NYC, 4hr from Houston and 7hr from Vancouver) and pretty much idyllic all year long. Although Costa Rica enjoys quite dramatic seasonal changes (in rainfall, not temps), there’s always a perfectly dry corner that’s ideal for a fantastic honeymoon. If that’ snot enough, all you need to enter the country is a valid passport and one blank page. But more importantly, Costa Rica is a natural haven, home to incredible national parks, jungles, waterfalls, volcanoes, unique wildlife and some of the friendliest people you’ll ever meet, anywhere. And that’s really all you need to know!

Costa Rica is renowned as an adventurer’s paradise and attracts honeymooning couples who wish for more than just an idyllic beach in which to sunbathe…although they can still enjoy plenty of that too. From rafting, to diving, snorkeling, hiking, zip lining, canyoning, kayaking and more, Costa Rica is like a one-stop shop for those who really want to see and do it all on their honeymoon.

Costa Rica Honeymoon Options

The honeymoon world, in Costa Rica, is your oyster. Whether you want to luxuriate in a world-class spa, enjoy fine dining and indulging in couple massages, or hurl yourself down some vertiginous rapid at breakneck speed, Costa Rica has the perfect spot for you.

What’s more, it has them all in close proximity to one another, so you can be adventurous AND blissfully relaxed on your honeymoon. Combining romance, with luxury and adventure is child’s play in this amazing country, which boasts some of the world’s leading eco-resorts, spas, beaches, rainforests, volcanoes and more. SCUBA divers, snorkelers and overall lovers of the underwater world will enjoy a spectacular Caribbean Adventure honeymoon, whilst intrepid adventurers can explore the depths of the country’s superlative jungles on an Exotic Honeymoon Adventure with the added option of white water rafting, or a startling Barefoot Romance Honeymoon, where we’ll guide you to, and through, the outstanding wonders of the Arenal and Montezuma regions. Planning a few adrenalin sports, with plenty of indulgences like thermal spa soaks, massages and beachside candlelit dinners, is bound to make your honeymoon in Costa Rica a very memorable affair indeed.

For those with more time up their sleeves, we offer a sensational 18-day adventure package which includes highlights from the most enticing parts of the country, including the Manuel Antonio National Park, Drake Bay, Monteverde and, of course, Arenal! When it comes to vacation type, you have the option of choosing just how active you wish to be, whether you prefer to spend more days sun-lounging on idyllic beaches, or try to pack in as many activities as you possibly can. The choice is yours.

How to Budget

The options for your budget are about as broad as the ones for your activities, but do note that we can organize an amazing honeymoon for you and your spouse, from as little as $1,500 per person, all inclusive! On the upper end of the scale, of course, we can help you find ways to spend a fortune, although this is quite contrary to the very essence of Costa Rica.

A country where the best things in life – like watching a breath-taking sunset on a secluded beach, or sharing your breakfast with a curious monkey – cost nothing at all.

Tweet about this on TwitterShare on FacebookShare on LinkedInEmail to someoneGoogle+Share on StumbleUpon

Costa Rica Destination Weddings – Everything You Need to Know!

Costa Rica weddingYou’re taking the plunge. It’s all set. You and your beloved have decided to get married at one of the many destination weddings locations in Costa Rica… Wooo hoooo! Kudos to you both! This is, without a doubt, one of the most exciting times in your life.

Yet, if you listen to all those who have come before you and they’ll tell you that it also has the potential of being one of the most stressful.

How on earth does one plan a wedding…in another country?!

With ease, that’s how!

Here are all the ins and outs of planning a Costa Rica wedding:

The Legalities of a Costa Rica Marriage

Marriage licenseWell, logistics may not be all that romantic, we know, but we still need to get them out of the way! There are several reasons Costa Rica is such a popular wedding venue, and much of this has to do with just how easy the whole process is for foreigners. You need not apply for a marriage license in Costa Rica, need not have your documents translated into Spanish and there are no waiting periods either. Plan it well and, if you wanted to, you could get married on the same day you arrive.

What you do need to do is send your planner a copy of your passports, civil status and personal details about a month before you arrive. If you’re not planning on getting married in a Catholic Church, you’ll need to have a lawyer present (your planner will organize this for you, of course) who will submit your marriage certificate and mail it to you back home once it’s all processed. Once you receive the certificate, your marriage will be recognized in your own home country. Costa Rican law also states that your witnesses cannot be related to you, so count on your best friends for this important job!

What Budget is Necessary?

Wedding budgetForget those astronomically expensive weddings many people have at home! In Costa Rica, your ‘average’ wedding, with about 50 guests, can set you back only about $5,000! This will include celebrant, venue, celebration lunch/dinner, flowers, photographer, entertainment and a delicious cake! Of course, you can certainly splash out on a super luxurious venue and uber-gourmet food, but a Costa Rican wedding need not cost an arm and a leg. The landscape, atmosphere and culture will be the highlights here…not the bling.

Best Time to Exchange Nuptials in Costa Rica?

Generally speaking, April and May are ideal months in which to get married in Costa Rica. This is the start of the low season (great deals to be found!) and the weather is just peachy. Having said that, make sure you time your wedding right and follow our seasonal guide to getting married in this small, but very varied country.

Is a Wedding Planner Required… or Can I Go it Alone?

Although it would be impossible to plan a destination wedding in Costa Rica all on your lonesome, we dare say the time consuming factor ought to not be taken too lightly. Moreover, the overwhelming majority of wedding hotels and resorts have their own in-house coordinators and their services are included in your ‘wedding package’, making their help totally priceless.

However, dedicated wedding planners in Costa Rica are something quite special, and can help with every detail of your wedding, including your (and your guests’) travel and accommodation plans. They’ll liaise with your chosen venues, organize the exact flower arrangements you desire and get all the paperwork out of the way too. For what it’s worth, we say that if you can stretch your budget a little more, and employ a wedding planner, then it will be money well spent. Most especially if you wish for your wedding ceremony to be held in a private beach house or villa in Costa Rica.

How Do You Choose the Right Venue?

Costa Rica resortWell, this depends on what you like! Destination wedding are big business here in Costa Rica, and you’ll be surprised how many inclusions many of the fantastic resorts will offer, to lure you in. Just to give you an idea, the stellar Alma del Pacifico, a small but luxurious beach side resort right next to the Manuel Antonio National Park (and only a couple of hours’ drive from San Jose Airport) will literally put the whole resort at your and your guests’ disposal when you book your wedding there. That’s the pool, spa, restaurant, breath-taking terrace and absolute waterfront location…all yours…for your wedding.

That’s the stuff dreams are made of! What’s more? It’s only one of many dedicated wedding resorts in Costa Rica. Speak to your wedding coordinator in Costa Rica or – working backwards – contact your dream resort/hotel and ask what kind of wedding packages they have on offer.

What About the Honeymoon?

The number one reason couples give, for choosing to get married in Costa Rica, is that they have the priceless chance of enjoying their honeymoon in one of the world’s most enticing countries. Without moving an inch. So take the stress out of planning your honeymoon and let us organize an all-inclusive adventurous honeymoon in Costa Rica, and discover how amazing, romantic and unique this corner of the world can be.

Tweet about this on TwitterShare on FacebookShare on LinkedInEmail to someoneGoogle+Share on StumbleUpon

Top Three Voted Volcano Hikes in Costa Rica

A land of natural extremes and a kaleidoscope of landscapes, Costa Rica is a wicked destination for anyone who wants to be immersed in pristine wilderness for a few days. Renowned for its striking volcanoes and volcano hikes, a Costa Rica vacation can be an adrenaline rush like no other.

This is a country brimming with active and extinct volcanoes and offers a multitude of rewarding hikes of varying duration and levels of difficulty.

In the mood to stand on the rim of a volcano and shout ‘I’m on top of the world?’  Then include a visit to one of these beauties on your next Costa Rica vacation.

Rincon de la Vieja, Guanacaste

Rincon de la Vieja VolcanoArguably the most popular volcano climb of all, Rincon de la Vieja offers a spectacular and somewhat hard-going climb to the rim, as well as several shorter ones if the weather isn’t cooperating or you wish for a more subdued workout. At 6,286 feet in height and with intermittent activity, Rincon is a firm and exhilarating choice. The trail to the rim has closed intermittently over the last two years, so check the latest info on the ground before heading up. The climb itself is breath-taking (for both beauty and hardship) and you’ll experience a steady and mesmerizing change in scenery. From the lush tropical rainforests of the base, through to dry forest half way up and finally a scramble over volcanic rocks for the last ascent. On a clear day the views are out of this world.

A round-trip hike up to the top is an all-day affair (8 hours on average) so pack plenty of water and snacks, and make sure you pack cold and wet weather gear. The hike is not suitable to do with children, the elderly or anyone with health issues, as the weather can be unpredictable and the path (especially towards the end) steep, treacherous and narrow.

Tenorio, Guanacaste

TenorioPerhaps the most exciting up-and-coming hiking destination, Tenorio and its stupendous National Park is a delightful hub of stellar experiences. There are hanging bridges to cross, sparkling waterfalls and colourful lagoons, verdant rainforests, natural hot springs and, to top it off, even a crater rim hike. The trail to the rim is accessible through a private property (Heliconias Lodge) and it’s a hard-core hiking feast that’s steep and muddy, but extremely rewarding for those who go to the effort. The lodge can also help you organize a guide with an expert local, as this is a near-inaccessible part of the national park and getting lost is not difficult.

Poás, Alajuela

PoasJust shy of 9,000 feet, Poás is as vertiginous as it is extraordinary, and also very popular due to the ease of access of its rim. You can actually drive (almost) all the way up! From the parking lot it’s merely a 5-minute walk to the rim, making this accessible to just about anyone. Poás has not erupted since the 1950s yet recent minor events have led experts to predict an impending – rather big – eruption. Due to weather concerns at this height, we suggest you head off early and plan to be at the rim no later than 9 am. Spend a whole day exploring the Poás National Park, where you’ll find picturesque lake-filled craters, dramatic landscapes and beautiful vegetation.

 

Tweet about this on TwitterShare on FacebookShare on LinkedInEmail to someoneGoogle+Share on StumbleUpon

Honeymoon AND Adventure? In Costa Rica, You Can!

Rock climbingLife is all about compromise, and never is this more apparent then when you’re trying to book your dream honeymoon and adventure. He wants rock climbing, you want relaxation; he wants to jump off waterfalls and you want a full-body mud wrap, sea salt exfoliation and coconut oil holistic massage. Not too much to ask now, is it?

Not if you’re planning an adventurous honeymoon to Costa Rica!

Costa Rica is an ideal honeymoon destination, especially if you’re dreaming of doing a little more than just lying on a stunning, tropical beach. Mind you, there will be plenty of that…but also so much more. The wonderful thing about this incredible country is that you can have adventure and romance, all the while basking in luxury and enjoying every comfort imaginable. Because everyone likes to rough it every now and then, but when you’re traveling to celebrate the beginning of your wedded bliss, bush camping in a tent just ain’t going to cut it.

Want to know how insanely fun, energizing and romantic your days can be?

Have a look at just some of the amazing itineraries you can plan on your Costa Rica honeymoon.

Rio Savegre: White-water rafting by day, massages by night

Rio SavegreArguably the most popular combination of all, the ‘white-water rafting plus massage’ would have to be one of the most enjoyable, rewarding and blissful days you could ever include on your Costa Rica honeymoon. Destinations for this abound here, as this country is known not only for its superlative rafting but also for its array of top-notch relaxation spas. Check out the Rafiki Safari Lodge, set along the shores of the dramatic Rio Savegre. This striking lodge offers a priceless chance to immerse yourself in the heart of the Costa Rican wilderness, all the while offering a plethora of active pursuits (like rafting and kayaking) as well as plenty of relaxing treats, like the delectable chocolate massages.

Manuel Antonio: multi-sports by day, wildlife spotting by night

Manuel AntonioThe Si Como No Resort, Spa & Wildlife Refuge is a luxurious and romantic resort just a few minutes’ drive away from Manuel Antonio National Park and its glorious beaches. Here, you can spend your days snorkeling, kayaking, hiking and horseback riding (among many more activities) and spend your evening on a private wildlife Night-time Nature Tour. Round off your evening with a romantic sundowner and dinner for two at the stunning Claro Que Seafood Restaurant or, if you want a super delightful splurge, ask your concierge to organize a private beachside dinner. Complete with elegantly set up dinner table, tiki torches and an ocean of candles, the beachside dinners at the Manuel Antonio beach come straight out of a fairytale storybook.

Tabacon: Canopy tour by day, thermal pools by night

Tabacon hot springsCosta Rica is renowned for being one of the best countries on earth where you can enjoy extensive and adrenaline-pumping zip-lining. Of course, this is greatly boosted by the fact that here we have some of the largest and best tropical forests as well. Channel your inner Tarzan – and Jane – and spend a whole day meandering your way through pristine jungles at the Sky Adventures Arenal Park. In the evening, head to the Tabacon Hot Springs (you can get a half day pass) and spend a few hours soaking with your beloved, in one of the country’s most romantic places. Hike to the adults-only section up the top and, if you stay away of a weekend, there’s a good chance you’ll score a whole natural pool all to yourselves.

Tweet about this on TwitterShare on FacebookShare on LinkedInEmail to someoneGoogle+Share on StumbleUpon

Discover Costa Rica’s Most Picturesque Waterfall Locations

Costa Rica’s extensive collection of stunning picturesque waterfall locations are arguably one of its best assets. There are few places, anywhere in the world, where you can literally waterfall-hop with such ease. The country’s abundance of rivers, mountainous topography and healthy yearly rainfalls means that no matter where you choose to go, you’ll be right nearby a spectacular waterfall.

Don’t believe us? Oh….you will.

Since not all waterfalls were created equal, if you’re planning a once-in-a-lifetime family adventure trip or an over-the-moon adventure honeymoon to Costa Rica, you really ought to seek out the most jaw-dropping waterfalls of all.

Here are our favorites and, we guarantee you, just a taste of the wonders you can discover here!

Rio Celeste Waterfall

Rio CelesteLong before man created Photoshop, Mother Nature created Rio Celeste. The awe-inspiring sight of its baby blue waters is created by a mineral reaction and is incredibly ethereal to say the least. The 90-metre drop simply adds to the amazing spectacle. This is considered the postcard-perfect waterfall in Costa Rica and, although reaching it requires a moderate amount of exertion, the hike up is worth every single sweat bead.

Where: In the northern section of the Tenorio Volcano National Park, Northern Costa Rica

Easy to visit from: La Fortuna, Bijagua, Guatuso

Activities: You’ll need to hike and descend over 250 steps. Swimming at this waterfall is not allowed

Best time to visit: December to April, for better viewing

La Fortuna Waterfall

La FortunaThis is one of Costa Rica’s most popular waterfalls, because it’s found right nearby La Fortuna, is (somewhat) easier to reach and swimming is allowed. Being a total stunner also helps! The fall drops 70 metres into a crystal clear pool, where you can enjoy an incredible frolic. There are two viewing platforms here and quite a few amenities. This is one of the country’s most visited sites, so head here at 8 am just as the park opens, to avoid the huge crowds.

Where: Only 3 miles from La Fortuna, Centre-north Costa Rica

Easy to visit from: La Fortuna

Activities: You’ll need to negotiate 500 steps, first down then up! There’s a visitor centre here with changing rooms and amenities.

Best time to visit: All year long, but June to September are particularly ideal

Nauyaca Waterfall

Nauyaca WaterfallsThis is one of the country’s largest and most impressive cascades. Nauyaca may fall a tad shorter than the first two (65 m), but it stumbles far and wide, over two amazing tiers. You can swim in the refreshing pool below and, if you’re lucky, may even see a few of the local daredevils take death-defying leaps from the top tier. Breathtaking and terrifying!

Where: In the southern section of Dominical, Southern Costa Rica

Easy to visit from: Uvita, Manuel Antonio, Ojochal

Activities: Easy 1 hr walk to the waterfalls, horse riding tours also available

Best time to visit: All year long, but June to September are particularly ideal

Llanos de Cortez Waterfall

Llanos de CortezA romantic curtain of water descends Llanos de Cortez and although the water volume is quite immense, these are perhaps the most romantic and genteel of all the cascades. Super easy to access, conveniently located and offering an ideal swimming pause on any day trip out and about, these waterfalls are great to visit at any time of year.

Where: Guanacaste. Just off Highway 1, about 20 km from Liberia, North-Western Costa Rica

Easy to visit from: Liberia, Bagaces, on route through Guanacaste Province

Activities: Swim, sunbake, enjoy!

Best time to visit: All year long

 

Tweet about this on TwitterShare on FacebookShare on LinkedInEmail to someoneGoogle+Share on StumbleUpon