Every winter the debate starts anew. Tawny is a true islander, born and raised for tropical climates. I, as a passionate northerner wait for snow. While we love to make the most of our time in the snow-capped peaks of Washington we almost always end up booking our escape to somewhere tropical. Lately we’ve being weighing the pros and cons of a Costa Rica home rental. We are at a stage in our travel game where we want to get as many of our friends together for a single trip as we can. Nothing makes that easier than a luxury villa in an exotic and affordable location. Right now, January, is a great time to make the plunge too. Costa Rica’s dry season runs from December to April, making it even more enticing to get out of the subfreezing temps here in the foothills of the Cascade mountains.
I think we might be the last of our friends to make it to Costa Rica, which only makes our hunger for the location that much greater. Costa Rica’s main international airport, Juan Santamaria, is centrally located and would be the perfect place to launch our exploration of the area. One thing that has changed with our travel lifestyle since having a kiddo is that we are much more likely to set up a base camp. In the past we would traditionally throw our backpacks on hit as many locations as we could. These days we like to rent a home somewhere and then plan our day trips our from there. As any of you with children know, you now travel with a ton more stuff once you have one. It is so much nicer to have a single location that you can drop all of your equipment and then rent a car or just walk through the city.
The most difficult decision for us is figuring out which location to set up shop for a week or two. There seems to be no end to local operations offering canopy tours, zip-lining, or waterfall rappeling. However locations like Northern Costa Rica, near Arenal Volcano, offer more exciting hikes, hot springs, and stunning views. It’s a tough call. An added perk to the Arenal Volcano area too is the close proximity to Venado caves, which offer a unique spelunking adventure in Costa Rica. Currently our sights are set on that region.
I’d be lying though if I didn’t say that one of the major draws to Costa Rica is the chance to hang out with sloths. Yeah, Tawny is a huge sloth fanatic and there are a lot of reputable outlets that allow you to get up close and personal with these little guys while helping the sloth population. The Aviarios del Caribe sloth sanctuary is one of our Costa Rican bucket list destinations. This facility was established to rehabilitate three-toed sloths. The local population of three-toed sloths has been under a great deal of pressure from outside factors that have led to its decline. The Aviarios del Caribe center tends to injured or rescued sloths with the intent of releasing them back into the wild while also educating the public. For those sloths who are too injured to return to the wild, they become permanent guest of the center and guest can meet these gentle denizens of the Costa Rican rainforest.
Considering my predisposition towards snowy mountains and Tawny’s history as an islander you might think that she would be the beach lover of us. However Tawny’s love of the ocean stops with the sand. For the most part she prefers more mountainous destinations and I am the one pushing us towards the sea. One of the reasons we’ve still never been to a beach in Thailand, despite our many trips. This factors into our decision too. Do we aim for a forest resort rental with a pool and a local hot spring or do we navigate our trip closer to the shore and hope for more snorkel/scuba adventures? Our travel friends are pretty much split down the middle on that one so it will most likely come down to a roll of the dice on that one.
There are a lot of reasons to consider Costa Rica. Not the least of which is the Rio Celeste. Winding through Tenorio Volcano National Park, this river is an electric blue ribbon that maintains its unique color with a combination of volcanic hot springs and rich sulfur deposits in the water. The series of hot pools and waterfalls along the length of the river as it cleaves its way through the emerald fabric of the local rainforest makes this one of the most beautiful locations we’ve seen pictures of in Costa Rica.
For those of you who know us, it’s no secret that we tend to lean towards more Pacific Island destinations when it comes time to book our annual “get the hell away from winter” trip. However, Costa Rica has been looming on the horizon of our minds for sometime now and I think it might finally be time to pull the trigger of this life-changing trip. Stay tuned, we will keep you posted on what we end up doing. If you’re planning your own trip to Costa Rica or just returned, we would love to hear your thoughts on where we should go!
Let us know in the comments below!
Some content in this post was sponsored but all our opinions, as always, are our own.