bali or southern costa rica?
March 25, 2005 6:21 PM   Subscribe

we are thinking about finally getting away for a belated winter/spring vacation ... to southern costa rica or perhaps to bali - i still think sri lanka sounds wonderful - can anyone speak to the conditions in either locations in early mid/apri? more inside

i believe bali is coming out of rainy season and southern costa rica is going into rainy season... kinda like to avoid really really hot or really really wet.
posted by specialk420 to Travel & Transportation (5 answers total)
I went on a build to Costa Rica for Habitat for Humanity about 5 years ago in early April. We went to the Alajuela Mountains first.

After the build, my friends and I rented a jeep and traveled from there to Monteverde (rain forest), Volcan Arenal (active volcano), and then to the Pacific coast. It was so incredibly fantastic.

The entire trip...the weather, the people, the food, everything...was magical. We avoided San Jose entirely (except for the airport) as well as tourist traps and resorts. Hiking the volcano was amazing. As was riding horseback at breakneck speeds down a Pacific coast beach under flocks of green parrots.

I loved Costa Rica. Not very long to get there either.

However, you might want to check in with the folks at the Lonely Planet Thorntree to check on current conditions. Thorntree has made it possible for me to hike China, Europe & Costa Rica while avoiding all possible tourists.
posted by jeanmari at 9:18 PM on March 25, 2005

I can't comment on Sri Lanka, but Bali is wonderful. The "touristy" area around Kuta is... touristy, but the rest of the island is magnificent. Inland is cooler too - Kuta gets pretty humid and dusty. The people are friendly and welcoming everywhere, and the service is efficient. We'd go every year if we could afford it.
posted by TiredStarling at 9:55 PM on March 25, 2005

Response by poster: thanks people - yeah bali sounds delicious... me sis has been there numerous times but never in april - and costa rica rocks as well... we haven't been to the far south pacific coast ... thus the question. speaking of - i can't recommend a book called "the surfers guide to costa rica" enough - great guide to all the beaches, breaks and surrounding little towns.
posted by specialk420 at 10:39 PM on March 25, 2005

I travel to Costa Rica about 3 / 4 times a year. It is obviously the cheaper of the two destinations you are considering. There are now two international airports San Jose (The Capital) and Liberia (Guanacaste province in the NW) which is mainly charter holiday flights.
The country is safe (as safe as anywhere these days) the people are helpful. A little Knowledge of Spanish will help. Road communication around the country is extremely good when you consider the physical aspects of the country. Car hire is not cheap but in my opinion probably neccesary.Most Car Hire originates at the major 2 airports. For budget travel there is a good bus service - Ithink its called Magic bus - check out the numerous websites. You state S. Costa Rica. One way to get there is by Sansa The Southern area is more isolated. You have Golfito with boat access to Zancudo,
There is also the Osa Peninsula - you can fly into Drake - an unpaved airstrip. By definition Costa Rica is wet - lots of tropical forest - however this is the end of the dry season. The Pacific Coast is hot and humid - but beautiful. If you want beach you could think Dominical or Manuel Antonio between Jaco and Dominical. This is a National park with beautiful beaches. I have never visited the Atlantic coast. It is one of the worlds wettest regions. I heard it is fun if you like to smoke a lot as there is a Jamacan culture there.
posted by adamvasco at 9:45 AM on March 26, 2005

One thing to be careful of on the Pacific coast? A killer rip tide. No lifeguards over there and..whoo. That puppy is a killer.
posted by jeanmari at 6:09 PM on March 26, 2005

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