Devon & Jamey’s Guide to Costa Rica Hey all, Below is a list of things that you can do & see while staying in Costa Rica. We’ve also included a list of restaurants that can be found on the Los Sueños resort as well as some restaurants that are close by. We hope you find this helpful and we’ll continue to update the website and this document as we learn more information. So check back often! We can’t wait to see you all in beautiful Costa Rica! Love, Devon & Jamey Electrical Plugs - 120V 60HZ Good to Know… Official Language - Spanish Time Zone - GMT Passports Don’t forget your passports! Everyone (even the little ones) must have a valid passport to enter Costa Rica. Please note if your passport expires within 6 months of your date of travel (in this case April) you will need to renew your passport prior to traveling. Turnaround times for passports can currently take as long as 3-4 months due to backlogs in the system, so please plan accordingly! Weather Costa Rica is a tropical country and experiences only two seasons: wet and dry. The dry season is generally between late December and April; the wet season lasts the rest of the year. San José and the Central Valley get an 'eternal spring' with lows averaging 15°C (60°F) and highs averaging 26°C (79°F). Both the Pacific and Caribbean coasts are pretty much sweltering year-round - get ready for some bad-hair days. Money Tips You can pay for tours, parks, hotel rooms and large-ticket items with US dollars. Meals, bus fares and small items should all be paid with colones. It's increasingly easy to find ATMs (cajeros automáticos) Holders of credit and debit cards can buy colones and sometimes US dollars in some banks. Cards are accepted at most mid-range and top-end hotels, as well as at top-end restaurants and some travel agencies. All car-rental agencies accept credit cards. Visa is the most widely accepted, MasterCard less so and Amex rarely. Some hotels might charge a 7% fee for using credit cards, in addition to government and service taxes. Sample Price Guide Loaf of bread: US$ 0.50 1L of bottled water: US$ 0.75 Small bottle of beer: US$ 0.75 Drinking Water Municipal water supplies in Costa Rica are excellent. Water purification standards are similar to those followed in North America and Europe. Water from rivers and streams is not safe to drink without purification. Inoculations No inoculations are currently required for travelers from North America to Costa Rica. Safety Costa Rica is the safest country in Central America. Wealth is distributed more evenly than in North American or European countries. Simple living is common, but education, health and welfare systems are very good and freely available, making abject poverty rare, reducing crime. Things to Do! Canopy Tours The Canopy Tour is perhaps the most uniquely Costa Rican adventure. Modeled after a pulley system designed by an American wildlife biologist who was looking for an efficient way to move study his subjects up close, today’s canopy tour is an adrenaline-pumping ride through the treetops via a secure system of zip lines. There are multiple canopy tours located within minutes of Los Sueños Resort. The less adventurous at heart can still experience the rainforest canopy through tours that forego the zip line in favor of a semi-enclosed aerial tram or an integrated network of suspension bridges. Costa Rica Luxury rentals staff will gladly recommend the tour that is most appropriate for your group in terms of degree of difficulty and tolerance for heights and speed! Please note that for your safety reasons, there are minimum age and height requirements for the zip line tours. Manuel Antonio National Park Manual Antonio Park is widely regarded as the gem of the national parks system. This tropical dry forest is located on a peninsula, surrounded by crystal clear Pacific waters and white sand beaches. An extensive trail system will lead you through a variety of ecosystems, where wildlife viewing opportunities abound, particularly for the three - toed sloth and capuchin monkeys. Carara Biological Reserve A mere 20- minute drive north of Los Sueños, Carara National Park offers endless wildlife viewing possibilities. This transitional forest is home to one of the few remaining breeding grounds for the majestic scarlet Macaw, most easily spotted in the early morning and late afternoon hours. The Tarcoles River and the mangroves that border the park are home to the gigantic American crocodile, which can be observed from the bridge or aboard a tour boat, where local guides interact with these monstrous creatures in daily feeding sessions. Volcanoes Arenal Volcano and Hot Springs is situated in the northern plains of San Carlos and is considered to be one of the most active volcanoes in the Americas. We highly recommend that you choose a two or three-day tour to this region, as the lava flows are most impressive when viewed late at night, weather permitting! At the base of the cone, you will find a number of natural hot springs bordered by dense rainforest, an unbelievably beautiful setting for one of the most relaxing experiences on earth! Costa Rica Luxury Rentals staff will be happy to coordinate private tours Poas Volcano Featuring geothermal activity and one of the largest craters in the world, it supports one of the most beautiful lagoons in the country. The vibrant turquoise waters are best viewed early in the morning, when cloud cover isn´t much. The surrounding national park boasts an extensive trail system that offers beautiful views of the Central Valley and San Jose metropolitan area. Poas is easily visited in a half-day tour, although we highly recommend that you combine it with a trip to the town of Sarchi, famous for its woodworking and handicrafts markets. Monkey Tour Come and discover the wonderful natural beauty of the Damas Island Estuary. Enjoy and exciting, fun, informative and ecological tour at the Mangrove. You will see different species of birds, mammals and reptiles in their natural habitat. Their main attraction is the white faced monkeys. Aerial Tram Pacific The Aerial Tram Park is located in the Central Pacific Coast, is an eco-tourism project of 222 acres (90 hectares of forest) that will allow visitors to discover the hidden secrets and hanging gardens of the Tropical Forest from a different perspective. A cascading 40-feet waterfall, giant rainforest trees and panoramic views of the ocean are all part of the ride on the Rain Forest Tram. The one hour-long ride on open-air gondolas and in company of a naturalist guide takes visitors to a maximum height of 130 feet above the rugged valley. Visitors will also have the opportunity to observe in the Herbarium, a complete selection of medicine, aromatic and condiment plants, learn about their practical use and unique characteristic. Also colorful and beautiful tropical flowers of different shapes are part of the Heliconias Gallery experience. The tour takes half day. ATV Tours Take a ride on an All Terrain Vehicle (ATV) and explore the beautiful Costa Rican rain forest and several great looker points where you can appreciate views of the some Costa Rica’s most popular beaches around. Enjoy the feeling of driving up and down mountains and hills, of crossing rivers, of being surrounded by the luxuriant vegetation of the forest with its huge centenary trees. Look around discovering the wildlife: tropical birds, howler monkeys yelling in the trees, iguanas crossing your paths and enjoy the beauty of Nature that is making Costa Rica famous all over the world. The ATV tour is an unforgettable excursion and it is good also for absolute beginners who want to try something different. Mangrove & Crocodile Adventure Discover first-hand the wonders of nature in the Rainforest. This adventure takes place on the Pacific Coast of Costa Rica along the Tarcoles River. The area is surrounded by mangroves and located in a transitional forest, where literally hundreds of mammals, birds and reptiles flourish. You can also observe a great variety of sea birds, macaws, toucans, etc. plus a great amount of crocodiles of all sizes. Sky Walk Villa Lapas Experience the energy of the rain forest during a one and a half hour hike on the suspended bridges of the skywalk’s 1.5 miles length. Bijagual Waterfall Hike Tour For those who enjoy a good hike, this tour offers great views thru scenic rural Costa Rican sites. Amazing bird life that can be contemplated from very close distances Plummeting from the cliffs deep in the jungle, the Bijagual waterfalls await to be discovered by explorers willing to take the challenge and extract the secrets of its location. Climbing the small range between Carara National Park and the Protected Zone of Turrubares, the road to the Bijagual is a rewarding experience, filled with breathtaking views of the Pacific Ocean and the coastal fishing villages, alternating with dramatic changes in vegetation The jungle trail leads visitors to within a few hundred meters from where the roaring sound of the waterfalls blends in with the calls of the Toucans and Red Macaws. Explorers will experience the pleasure of nature with a plunge into the pristine pools at the base of the waterfalls. Then continue to be followed by the exploration of this mystical site, and the observation of the abundant wildlife Kayak and Snorkeling tours Herradura Bay and nearby beaches are renowned for their calm waters. The best way to explore the rich coastline is through a guided tour in an ocean kayak or a 40-foot long outrigger canoe (for groups up to eight people, perfect for those with young children). Half- day tours depart from the beaches north of Los Sueños Resort and include ground transport paddling instruction and refreshments. Our preferred kayak will be launching a white water kayak tour for the 2005 season. Using inflatable kayaks instead of traditional rafts, you can run an exciting tropical river located only one hour from Los Sueños Resort. At the end of the tour, you will be taken to a spectacular waterfall fro swimming. This full-day tour includes ground transport, padding instruction and lunch. Horseback Riding Our recommended tour provider boasts that she has the fastest, happiest horses in Costa Rica! Morning and afternoon tours take riders to the mountains behind Jaco, where they will experience breathtaking vistas of the coastline and surrounding countryside. In high season (December through May), it is possible to visit a private rainforest reserve that features three beautiful waterfalls. All tours include a bilingual nature guide and refreshments. Please wear long pants and closed-toe footwear. Tours must be booked at least 24 hours in advance. Please contact Costa Rica Luxury Rentals for further information. La Iguana Golf Course Both Esquire and Celebrated Living magazines recently ranked Los Sueños as a top winter golf destination for its unique playing environment. The 18-hole, par-72 course, designed by Ted Robinson Jr, plays through the resort’s private rainforest reserve. La Iguana’s caddies are all trained naturalist guides, who will point out the various wildlife species that inhabit the fairways, including monkeys, sloth, coatis, toucans and macaws. Surf Lessons Surfing is what put Costa Rica’s Central Pacific Coast on the map, and our local beaches still attract thousands of visitors monthly. Playa Jaco (10 minutes south from Los Sueños) is perfect for beginner and intermediate boarders. Experienced surfers should head south to Playa Hermosa (20 minutes from Los Sueños), home to a number of international surf competitions sponsored by companies such as Roxy, OP, Quicksilver and Billabong Having the right surfing instructor makes all the difference in your success. Gustavo Castillo is the primary surf instructor at Jaco Surf School and he has been surfing his entire life. Gustavo has surfed and competed around the world on the Costa Rican National Surf Team. Gustavo does not just teach surfing, he lives surfing White Water Rafting Costa Rica is the perfect place for the first white water rafting experience since it has several rivers to offer a combination of reasonable rapids and beautiful floats. These are even rivers that are great for bird watching, since the lack big rapids and flow through forest full of birds and the other animals. In fact, all river trips offer chances to see a bit of the country’s wild life such as iguanas, blue morphs butterflies, parrots, otters, king fishers and herons. Tortuga Island at Calypso’s Catamaran Cruise Calypso Tours is one of the oldest tour operators in Costa Rica. Since 1975, more than 25 years, Calypso Tours has delighted hundreds of thousands of visitors on her World Famou s Island Cruise. Enjoy a day in the sun and the palm studded white sand beach and turquoise waters of Tortuga Island. Calypso’s attention to details and recognition as the tourist industry’s standard for excellence guarantees a Perfect Day, your holiday vacation in paradise ☼ for spacious comfort, tour limited to 85 people Sport fishing Los Sueños Marina is the home port for a fleet of over 25 licensed charter vessels that specialize in big game sport fishing. The waters off of the resort are considered one of the prime bill fishing grounds in the world. Pacific sailfish are abundant, while large black and blue marlins are caught on daily basis. Meat fish such as yellow-fin tuna, Wahoo and Dorado are plentiful year-round. In-shore fishing enthusiasts will have plenty of opportunities to try their luck at catching the spectacular roosterfish, which averages 90 pounds in these waters! Costa Rica Luxury Rentals staffs are happy to customize a charter to best meet your needs. Full and half day fishing tours are available on vessels ranging from 21 to 65 feet. We can also arrange for non-fishing charters for day trips to Isla Tortuga and Montezuma, as well as sunset cruises. Adventure Dining Adventure dining, at Pura Vida Gardens and Waterfalls, combines the natural beauty of Costa Rica with ¨The Dining Experience of your Lifetime¨. Your adventure begins with a scenic coastal drive before ascending one of Costa Rica´s highest mountains. As you traverse the dense rainforest, breathtaking views appear around every turn. When you reach your final destination, you will simply say…. WOW!!!. Their open air dining platform overlooks the Bijagual waterfall and miles of pristine coastline. With your favorite beverage in hand, you may choose to stroll their manicured trails to view 4 different waterfalls and the diversity of native trees, plants and wildlife. Or, simply relax and absorb the tranquil sounds of the rainforest As the sun sets over the mountains, your private table awaits you. Fresh flowers, tiki torches and romantic music create an unforgettable ambiance. Their cuisine and personalized service will exceed your expectations. Note: Prices and tour times are subject to changes Restaurant Guide With the unique restaurants and lounges at the Los Sueños Marriott Ocean & Golf Resort, as well as six waterfront establishments at Los Sueños Marina, choosing a place to dine is a delightful dilemma for residents and visitors to our resort. Nuevo Latino Arrecife La Vista Hoyo 19 Puesta del Sol Casa del Café El Galeón The Hook Up Terrace Lounge Lanterna Bambu Dolce Vita El Galeón Restaurant and Martini Bar has established a new standard for fine dining in Costa Rica. Our team of international chefs consistently strives to create unique dishes by fusing international flavors with a distinct Latin American flair, incorporating only the freshest local ingredients. Our bar is well stocked with an extensive selection of premium liquors, featuring the country's largest collection of imported vodkas and carefully selected wines from France, Italy, Spain, Australia, Chile and California. From El Galeón's open-air dining room, patrons can take in the spectacular view of the world-class Los Sueños Marina and beautiful Herradura Bay. The atmosphere is relaxed, with attentive staff who will go out of their way to make your dining experience an enjoyable one. Located on the waterfront at Los Sueños Marina Village. Seating from 6:00 pm to 9:30 pm nightly. Closed on Wednesdays from May 1 to November 15 and during the entire month of September. The Hook Up Up Bar and Restaurant boasts one of the country's premier locations, offering patrons a 270-degree panoramic view of Los Sueños Marina, Herradura Bay and the surrounding mountains. The Hook Up is a laid-back environment where you can enjoy a mix of classic rock and Latin pop tunes played over our state-of-the-art stereo system. Major sporting events are displayed on seven televisions located throughout the restaurant, with the most important matches projected onto the large screen over the bar. Our menu features traditional American pub food such as gourmet sandwiches, burgers, tortilla wraps and pizzas, as well as hearty homestyle breakfasts. Daily specials are more international in flair and popular theme nights keep Los Sueños residents, boaters and visitors coming back for more. Box lunches and party platters are also available with advance notice. Located on the second floor of the Marina Entry Building Food service available from 6:30 am to 10:00 pm, with bar service until midnight. Reservations are not required. For delivery service to your yacht or Los Sueños residence, please call 637-8284. The Terrace Lounge Situated upstairs from Lanterna is The Terrace Lounge, where you will feel the romance of the European-style ambiance and design. Overlooking the Village, patrons can relax and enjoy a nightcap – or two- while listening to the comforting sound of jazz or the tropical beat of local entertainers. Lanterna Ristorante Italiano Bringing the aromas, the charm, and the flavors of Italy to Los Sueños, Lanterna Ristorante Italiano offers traditional Italian cuisine against the backdrop of the Los Sueños Marina. Whether you are in the mood for savory lasagna or old-world spaghetti, Lanterna’s cuisine will indulge your strongest cravings. Bambú Sushi and Asian Cuisine Travel to Asia without ever leaving Los Sueños. With its contemporary bamboo-inspired interior and waterfront location, Bambú diners will feel as though they have suddenly arrived in the Far East. Sample delicacies from all over the Asian continent; these exotic and tasty dishes will leave you with flavors to remember. Dolce Vita Coffee and Sweets Treat yourself to the true Costa Rican delicacy – coffee - at Dolce Vita Coffee and Sweets. Dolce Vita offers a wide variety of coffees, hot and cold to appease even the most eccentric urge. And every coffee lover knows that great coffee should be accompanied by succulent sweets. Dolce Vita has it all, from fresh baked breads to gelato and pastries. Nuevo Latino Reflects our desire to unite the cuisine and service of the Caribbean, Central and South America, with all of its glamour and vitality, in one place. We consistently enchant our guests with an enjoyable and unique dining experience characterized by exceptional service and unique cuisine that draws from a diverse palette of local ingredients. Our experienced chefs elevate traditional Latin American cuisine by embracing influences and flavors from all over the Latin world and combining familiar and exotic ingredients using classic cooking techniques. Enhanced by a selection from our extensive international wine list and the spectacular views from our dining room, a meal at Nuevo Latino is certainly a culinary experience to remember. Located poolside on the ground floor of the Los Sueños Marriott Ocean & Golf Resort. Open daily from 6:00 pm to 11:00 pm. Reservations are recommended, especially during holiday periods. La Vista Restaurant Experience the best in traditional Costa Rican and international dishes, all served in the relaxed atmosphere that is La Vista. Choose from shaded, poolside tables or our air-conditioned, colonial-inspired dining room. Three nights a week, we feature special theme buffets: Wednesday - Seafood Festival: a selection of dishes prepared with the day's catch, including fresh grilled lobster, shrimp brochettes and various ceviches. Friday - Oriental Night: fresh sushi made right before your eyes, as well as a Mongolian Barbecue - select your ingredients and our chef prepares a stir fry to your liking! Sunday - Tico Buffet: local ingredients prepared in the traditional way. Located poolside on the ground floor of the Los Sueños Marriott Ocean & Golf Resort. Open daily from 6:00 am to 10:00 pm, serving breakfast, lunch and dinner. Theme buffets open from 6:00 am to 10:00 pm on designated evenings. Arrecife Restaurant Choose from casual poolside service in our open-air rancho or simply swim up to our bar. We offer a delicious menu and refreshing drinks in the enchanting surroundings of our oceanfront tropical gardens. Every Saturday we invite you to join us for our BBQ & Live Jazz night under the stars. Our scrumptious buffet features fresh grilled shrimp, fish, steak and ribs, plus a delicious selection of homemade desserts. Located in the pool area of the Los Sueños Marriott Ocean & Golf Resort. Open daily from 10:00 am to 6:00 pm. Saturday BBQ & Live Jazz Night is from 6:00 pm to 10:00 pm. Hoyo19 Why not come and watch your favourite game on one of our TV's with a nice cold beer, or simply unwind after a round of golf with a delicious meal from our extensive menu? Hoyo 19 (the “19th Hole”) offers this and more, with fantastic views of “La Iguana” golf course and the lush rainforest beyond. Located in the La Iguana Club House of the Los Sueños Marriott Ocean & Golf Resort. Open daily 11:00 am to 5:00 pm. (hours extended for certain sporting events) Posta del Sol Enjoy unforgettable sunsets and views of the Pacific in this sophisticated yet relaxed atmosphere. We offer a delicious menu of snacks, appetizers and all of your favorite drinks. Located on the balcony on the main floor of the Los Sueños Marriott Ocean & Golf Resort. Open daily from noon to midnight. Casa del Café Homemade pastries, fresh baked bread, made-to-order sandwiches, crisp salads and freshly brewed Costa Rican coffee await you at Casa del Café. We also offer a wide selection of box lunches and gourmet gifts. Located in the entry courtyard of the Los Sueños Marriott Ocean & Golf Resort. Open daily from 6:00 am to 10:00 pm. Nearby Restaurants El Hicaco Restaurant & Lobster Feast Seafood Open for lunch and dinner Seafood with all you can eat Lobster on Wednesdays PM. El Pelicano Seafood Open for lunch and dinner El Galeon International Open for dinner El Galeon fine dining restaurant . Tsunami Sushi Japanese Open for dinner California style sushi restaurant. Wishbone Open for lunch and dinner Casual Dinning-Warm Atmosphere. Variety menu-w/ good food. Pizza, Fish, Burritos, Full Bar.