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Hi! Do you happen to have the same sort of tips for toddlers? We are going to Costa Rica in mid February to early March, and I thought I had things mostly figured out but now I’m not so sure. We haven’t decided where we are going (would like to explore as much as possible), but mosquitos (and Tika) are a concern for me, as well as any painful bites really. For example, with sandals, which would you go with for your child (closed toe, regular straps, flip flops, zero sandals at all). I’m not sure if all these warnings of getting bitten are being overly emphasized or if I need to be concerned. Lastly, are locals there generally concerned with Zika and having children / being pregnant?
If you’ve already covered this somewhere and I’ve missed it, please let me know where to find it.
Thank you for any and all input.

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Hi Jenn and Matt….awesome article! Wanted to know your thoughts on our itinerary for me and my wife. We arrive in San Jose on 9/2. Being picked up on 9/3 to Tortuguero for 3 nights. Picking up a rental car (through Adobe…thank you!!) in Guapiles on 9/6 and driving to Sarapiqui for 3 nights. Then heading to San Gerardo de Dota for 3 nights. Driving to San Jose for flight to Bocas Del Toro for 3 nights and then returning to San Jose for return to US. We won’t be doing any heavy hiking but will definitely want to go on some leisurely walks and tours as we are “birders”. Our stays will be at Reserves or Eco places. Does that mean more mosquito’s than normal since we’ll be in the reserves?


CO Tony Anderson (Morris) retired March 6.

Hi Robin, That sounds like a good itinerary. Just make sure you’re allocating enough time to each place as some of those areas take a while to get to (Tortuguero and the Bocas). One other thing is that the Pacuare is a challenging river, since you have younger kids. Some of the tour companies have a minimum age (we have seen 12 yo for February).


I’d love to hear your thoughts! Thank you!

As for car vs. shuttle, it is much easier to get around the Dominical area with a car because restaurants, stores, and activities are more spread out. The route from SJO to Poas to Dominical is all well traveled and paved so the driving isn’t bad. If you do decide to rent a couple of cars, make sure to check out our . Or if you decide on a shuttle, we can help with a private one if you would like. Just reply to this thread and let us know. Hope your group has a wonderful trip!

Fun planning our trip, just need a little help.

Hi Lisa, If you have only one night, Poas is your best option for a volcano because it’s not too far from San Jose. Arenal is about 2.5 hrs and farther from Dominical so you would want to spend at least a couple of nights. We have an article on Poas .

Do you recommend a 4wd for Ocotal area?

Thank you! We booked San Jose only because of the date that was offered for a direct flight there. We really wanted to check out Tamarindo and Nosara from Liberia but I guess that will have to wait until another trip 🙁 Do you have any tips on getting a shuttle or taxi all the way to Mal Pais from San Jose? We land at 12:30 so I’m hoping that we can get into ST the same day.

That’s great to hear, Lorna. We hope you have a wonderful visit!

Hello Jenn and Matt! We are from the west coast of Canada. My husband and I and our three boys, 8-11-13 with my brother and his wife and three kids 5-10-13 will be spending 10 days just south of Dominical in March. We are so excited, I love traveling but this will be my kids first time out of the country. We have 1 night open yet to book, and we are trying to decide which Volcano we want to see, we also are trying to decide if we rent two cars or get a shuttle. Were are kinda between Uvita and Domincal, and want to do surfing, hiking, visiting the local animals and refugees and just relaxing. do you have a suggestion since we fly into San Jose, where we should go for our first night and if we should try navigating the roads ourselves? Love your site and think that it is awesome the adventure you guys are on! Bless you and your family! thanks for all the itinerary ideas!

What should we brings as far as clothes?

Hi Erica, Liberia is a little closer so go with that if prices are good. San Jose is fine too. It’s slightly longer but one hour of the time is a nice ferry ride, which breaks up the drive nicely, especially for kids. We have more info about driving to Mal País in our and post.