4 Tips on How To Get the Most Out of Costa Rica on the Cheap

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Costa Rica is a great country for nature lovers. The problem is that ever since it became a popular place for travelers it also became expensive. Since not all of us can afford spending a small fortune on a vacation I came up with a list tips to save you money and have great adventures.

How to Save When Visiting Costa Rica:

1. Arenal and La Fortuna – Secrets to fun and cheap adventures such as: La Fortuna Waterfalls, Hanging Bridges and Hot Springs – go without a guide. You don’t need a tour for these places and this way all you do is pay for the entrance fee which is a fraction of the price for a tour.


2. Monteverde Cloud Forest – Head to the private reserves of Santa Elena or Monteverde and simply do the hiking and exploring on your own. There is so much to see and do, and quite frankly a guide doesn’t really point out anything that isn’t obvious.

However, if you want to see tons of animals, including colorful frogs, take ‘the night tour’ instead of the regular day tour. Believe me it is worth the $25 per person. During the day tour you don’t see as many frogs and animals. There are many interesting Costa Rica tours to choose from and this is just one of them.


3. Manuel Antonio and Quepos – Manuel Antonio has a lot going for it. It’s one of the best places in Costa Rica to have up close encounters of wildlife, great beaches and super cheap (safe) public buses that will cost you less than 25 cents and run non stop to all the cool locations. Plus, you can save a bundle if you don’t hire a guide in the park.

4. Final Tip – Eat Locally at a Soda – Avoid big, expansive restaurants and go local. Isn’t that the point of traveling? Sodas are Costa Rica’s version of local eateries and ask for a traditional meal that includes drink, protein, starch, soup and desert for less than $8.


Follow these simple tips and save as you enjoy the beauties of Costa Rica.

About the Author:
Marina K. Villatoro is an expat living and traveling in Central America with her family for over 10 years. She blogs all about her family’s adventures and life at TravelExperta.com. With all the miles under their belts, she’s written a useful Family Travel in Costa Rica Guidebook – tested and approved by her family!


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  1. I love Manual Antonio! What a great spot. We had a guide and spotted so many more animals then we would have on our own. It’s worth the money.

  2. What a lovely view! I’ve not been yet but would love to soon!

  3. make sure if you go in off season it is not hurricane season… that would put a damper on your vacation.

  4. oooo i am interested by the soda.
    looks like 1/2 deli 1/2 mini-mart.
    im in

  5. Beautiful! I’m assuming that a Soda must be like our version of a diner type?

  6. Thanks everyone.

    Pam we lived there for 7 years. Costa Rica is gorgeous, but it is getting as expensive as most US states these days.

    Let me know if you need help with any ideas.

  7. I would love to go there!

  8. Gorgeous! I’d love to go there someday!

  9. This is where I plan to retire.

  10. Great deals. Sounds like a great place to visit

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