Is Costa Rica Safe?
The Costa Rican people (they call themselves Ticos) are friendly and trustworthy.
As when you travel anywhere, use common sense, keep your valuables safe and don't walk dark streets alone; but don't worry that people you do business with are trying to pull one over on you.
We have never felt either at risk of physical harm or of being cheated in Costa Rica.
When leaving the house, put everything in the safe and don’t leave valuables in view of the windows.
Your car should not be left unattended with your belongings in it.
Do I need a passport?
Yes. Passports must be valid for six months AFTER your return.
You can no longer enter Costa Rica with just your birth certificate.
Your baby needs one too! Keep your passport secure. Within Costa Rica, tourists may carry a copy of the biographical data page of the passport and the page with the immigration stamp with them.
Leave the original on a secure place (hotel safe).
Do I need to get shots?
No. Some people get anti-malarial shots, but most doctors here do not recommend it.
What kind of clothes should I pack?
San José can be cool in the evenings, a long-sleeved denim shirt or light jacket might be desired.
If you plan a trip to a rain forest you should bring the same plus a rain poncho, umbrella & hiking boots.
Once you head to the beach all you need are shorts, lightweight T-shirts, swim wear & a sun hat - that's it!
You might like a cotton sundress for evenings out but nothing that is dress-up” or needs ironing.
Casual is accepted everywhere in Nosara
Do I need an adapter for my hairdryer or other electrical appliances?
First, why would you bring one!?
But, to answer your question, if you are from the U.S. - No.
If you are from Europe you will need a converter. Most of our rooms have 220V plug
What about grocery stores?
There are two large grocery stores, Super Nosara & Super La Paloma. in the town of Nosara, approximately 4 kilometers from the beach area.
Another, Super Dos Lorenas, is located in Esperanza.
We have two mini-supers in the beach area: Super Mini in Playa Guiones (10 minutes walk) and Pancho's in Playa Pelada.
How do I book a reservation? What kind of deposit is required?
It's easy, just contact us with questions and to confirm availability of dates.
All reservation require a credit card authorization
Are the rates the same for Christmas, New Years?
No, because of high demand they are higher. Please check our rates.
What do I need to know about money?
The Costa Rican currency is the colon (¢).
You can use US dollars just about anywhere without difficulty; however, it is a good idea to get a fistful of clean new currency before leaving your country since torn or dirty bills may be rejected.
Change will be given in colones, so you'll want to have smaller bills for smaller purchases. Don't worry about what exchange rate you're getting at small establishments; they are never more than a few pennies lower than the bank rate.
Travelers' Cheques are accepted in our hotel like cash
Many local establishments now accept credit cards (usually VISA), on some places it is difficult to pay with AMERICAN EXPRESS.
But ask about their policy first since the quoted amount usually includes a 7% cash discount.
A bank has opened in Nosara where you can exchange money and get cash advances.
Hours are Monday–Friday from 9:00-3:00 and Saturday 9:00-12:00.
There is an ATM at the bank where you can get a VISA card cash advance, in colones.
How do I keep in touch with Home?
You can buy phone cards in our hotel to use in the pay phones.
There is an internet cafe across from the Gilded Iguana & service is also available at the Library in town.
We offer free internet access and wireless internet for our guests.
How do I get to Nosara?
From San José
By air - Sansa and Nature Air (two small plane, in-country air services) fly to Nosara daily (45 minutes).
Private charters are also available.
You can have a rental car waiting at the Nosara airport for you.
By bus - A bus goes to Nosara daily, leaving San José at 6:15 am and arriving at Nosara at noon. It leaves Nosara for San José at 1:00 PM.
The trip is long and not very comfortable, but the price is right (about $12 roundtrip).
By car - The drive from San José takes approximately 4½ hours via the Pan American Highway although it is not uncommon for it to take a couple of hours longer, depending on traffic & road work.
You leave San José and head towards Puntarenas, but do not take that exit.
Continue north until you see the turn for the La Amistad Bridge which crosses the Tempisque.
From there you follow the signs to and then through Nicoya.
This is the last place you will be able to refuel using a credit card.
After Nicoya you will cross over several one-lane bridges, not fun at night!
Note the Ceda signs, they mean Yield!
About 30 minutes out of Nicoya you will pass a Castrol gas station, on the left.
If you haven't refueled yet do so now. They do not take credit cards.
Immediately after that, the paved road curves left and a dirt road to the right goes to Nosara.
This road varies from bad to worse with more one lane bridges over creek beds that may or may not have water in them.
About 10 minutes after the fishing village of Garza (where you first see the ocean on your left) you will enter Playas de Nosara an obvious "Gringo" development.
You have arrived!
This little jaunt on the dirt road takes about 45 minutes.
By bus - Don't do it if you are pressed for time.
It could take you a whole day or two and we can't begin to tell you how to do it!
By car or taxi - The drive from Liberia takes about 2½ hours. We can organize the transport for you.
Head west from the airport follow the signs to Nicoya and then see above to get to Nosara.
By airplane: Nature Air offers flights from Liberia to Nosara
Do I need a car in Nosara and must it be a four wheel drive?
If you are a healthy walker and just plan on going to the beach, a few restaurants, and the mini market you can do without a car.
However, if you can afford one, it is nice to be able to go into town to the larger groceries, some of the more out of the way restaurants and generally explore.
Are there bugs in Nosara?
The ecosystem in Nosara is still intact so bugs are not really a problem.
That said, Costa Rica is home to over 34,000 species of insects so it is likely you will see a few!
If you are allergic to bee or scorpion stings, bring your epi pen.
Some people seem to be more prone to mosquitos.
If you are one of them bring or buy your body spray or lotion here.
Almost all of the rest of the insects are perfectly harmless and many are quite beautiful or at least interesting
Consider yourself lucky if you see Army Ants.
You will know them by the long line of ¼" black ants, some carrying other insects on their backs.
When we say long line, we mean it, it can take hours for them to pass.
They will clean out the cockroaches and other vermin as thoroughly as any exterminator might, but will not touch human food.
They are not aggressive to you or to other large creatures and they will go out of their way to avoid you; however if you do inadvertently step into their midst they will sting.
Pack a picnic and go to the beach or to a bar or just stay and watch, they are fascinating.
You can’t kill them off with spray, there are too many, and you’ll do more harm to yourself than to them.
Please don't try, they are good ants!
Marcel & Myriam Schärer firstname.lastname@example.org
Telephone:( 506 ) 2682-4000 or ( 506 ) 2682-0258
Fax:( 506 ) 2682 0353 SKYPE: myrimarc