Costa Rica


It has been a few months and boy have things changed!! As we’ve spent the past SIX WEEKS sitting at home, i’ve been DREAMING of our next beach vacation, which of course has me remembering our last incredible tropical adventure, and I just want to share every detail! First things first, we had an absolute blast! We laughed basically every minute of every day! The only times we weren’t laughing, we were both yelling near-profanities because we couldn’t figure out how to work our map apps in Costa Rica! (pro tip, friends: apple maps DOES NOT WORK in Costa Rica! It’s Waze or bust!) All the yelling was always followed by more hilarious laughter!

I want to share every thing with you so that when you plan your own Costa Rican adventure, you’ll be prepared!! I can highly recommend Costa Rica as your first post-COVID 19 vacation! It’s a great price point, there’s an abundance of fresh air, and best of all, it’s not your house! Anywhere will be heaven after all of this!!

I’ll lay out the good, the bad, and the ugly here!



Y’all — it would be literally impossible to fully explain how absolutely magical and gorgeous this country is. We spent most of our times up in the mountains, and it was almost constantly misting, while the sun was shining simultaneously, so it was just constant breathtaking rainbows. The type of rainbow that you can see where it begins and you can see where it ends. Incredible! We spent most of our time on the trip saying “How does this place exist?” and “Do you see that fern though?! It’s taller than me?!” and “Can you even explain to me how a full grown aspidistra plant is growing out of that tree 70 feet in the air?! What is going on here?!”” It’s truly unbelievable! Our Air BNB was a little dairy farm in Monteverde, and every morning we looked out over a vast and beautifully misty valley. Absolutely incredible, and worth the visit just for the scenery!


Okay, y’all KNOW this is my wheel house!! As someone who spends most of the day and night thinking about food, this is a big one for me! The authentic Costa Rican dishes are incredible. Gallo Pinto (beans and rice with some special spices) is absolutely delicious. Just a classic dish that’s tasty in every country. My favorite was called “Casados” which is essentially a lunch platter consisting of some type of meat, rice, beans, potatoes, plantains, a salad, and homemade corn tortillas! It’s plenty of food, very tasty, and super authentic! Fresh corn tortillas are always a win in my book! Something I thoroughly enjoyed was that every single place had their own homemade hot sauce. I would offer a word of warning/encouragement, that the best food you can find anywhere (not just Costa Rica) is never going to be in the tourist areas! We always try and avoid eating in any touristy area, and always find places that are filled with locals to get the best food! That being said, the very best place we found to eat in all of Costa Rica was Tortilleria Orotina. You can order ANYTHING and it’ll be delicious there!


Much like my favorite place in the world, Kenya, the people of Costa Rica are so friendly, so welcoming, and just a wonderful presence to be around! That being said, if you’re in the rural areas, many locals speak ONLY Spanish and not a lick of English, but they don’t let this slow them down when having a conversation with you! lol. In many situation we just smiled, nodded our heads and said “Gracias! Si! Gracias!”


Before coming to Costa Rica, we had some concerns about the safety of zip lining and general anxiety about heights, but I can tell you, we zip lined at Selvatura Park, in Monteverde and it was an absolute blast!! We never once felt concerned about our safety, or fearful of heights or anything! The zip line designers are very smart and send you on up to 13 lines, not just one long scary line. So at our park, the first line was only fifteen feet off the ground, and maybe 15 yards long. It’s a little baby zip line to get you comfortable with what you’re doing! Then the guides unhook, and rehook you on the next few zip lines so quickly that you don’t even have time to be scared or think about what you’re doing! Next thing you know, you’re 5 lines in and are having a blast! Any concerns for safety or heights is out of your mind and you’re just laughing and enjoying the beautiful view of the canopy!


We rented a car in Costa Rica (which I highly recommend, but keep reading to be fully informed on “the bad” before you commit to renting a car) so that we had the freedom to go wherever we wanted! This was by far the best and easiest mode of transportation for us, and surprisingly to us, the roads were INCREDIBLE! It’s like every road we were on had been newly paved, and were smooth, pretty, brand new black asphalt. They do drive on the right side of the road, and all of the road signs/lights were easy to understand. Piece of cake to drive in CR!



Yes yes yes, I know The Roads were in “The Good” — but I do have to mention, if you’re going to more rural areas (like where we were at up in the mountains) you’ll definitely run into some pretty rough roads too. non-paved, very rocky, and generally slippery due to the constant rain. We recommend a 4WD vehicle, although we only had 2WD and we did just fine!


This one’s kind of a big one y’all, and we noticed SEVERAL people were very very upset at the airport while they tried to get this organized. (we luckily already knew this was going to happen, so it was no problem) — When you rent a car in Costa Rica, you’ll likely get it setup online before ever stepping foot in the country. That’s great! and necessary, and likely very cheap (ours was $12 a day). However once you arrive at the counter to pick up your car, they will notify you that there is a mandatory fee that covers taxes, insurance, and a deposit. Then they’ll give you some options like “If you pay $40 a day in insurance, then we only require a $300 deposit”“ but “if you pay $10 a day in insurance, then we will require a $2,000 deposit!” Again, we were expecting this, so we paid for the insurance and carried on with our trip! Unfortunately, many many Americans were not expecting this. Some were enraged, some were crying as they had not planned for this, and some just looked bereft. You cannot argue your way out of these fees as it is a country-wide law. Just take it on the chin, and plan that your rental car will cost the $12 a day you already paid PLUS a fee when you arrive in country as well!



Okay this is real talk y’all — before our trip we heard over and over again that we’d want to toss our shoes at the end of the trip, so we were prepared for that and wore our yard shoes! (although, to be honest, our shoes were fine. we took careful steps, and rinsed them off when possible) — The real problem was how stinky our clothes got! We spent 90% of our time outside (which you will too) and it rained constantly. So we were in and out of the rain all day, and our clothes were constantly damp. The thing is, we were only there for 3 days and our 3-day old damp clothes smelled really really bad when we got home. If you are planning on staying longer than that, you’ve got to come up with a stinky clothes solution!


lol this lesson was learned the hard way. Apple maps absolutely does NOT work when you’re in Costa Rica. Don’t even try it. Don’t even waste your time! You’ll need to use the Waze app. We did have Waze downloaded, however it is a very different format than what we were used to, and it also experiences some pretty severe delays in Costa Rica, so WHOOPS WE JUST MISSED OUR TURN! 🙂 Good luck!

We seriously had the best time in Costa Rica, and recommend it as a great 3-day weekend trip! The flight was only 3.5 hours from DFW, the price was just right, and we made life-long memories experiencing an incredible country! If you have any questions about your upcoming Costa Rica trip, leave us a comment below and we’ll tell you everything we know! We won’t keep any secrets!

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