Costa Rica Warnings Or Dangers Tips by monica71 Top 5 Page for this destination

Costa Rica Warnings and Dangers: 191 reviews and 144 photos

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in front of the park entrance - Costa Rica

in front of the park entrance

Irazu Volcano - foggy weather

We did not have a chance to see the Irazu Volcano due to thick fog and heavy rain. The park was open, but they were turning back all the cars because of the bad weather. On the way to the volcano the weather was changing from sunny to rainy and foggy, but we were hoping that once we get there there would be a break in the clouds that would allow us to see the volcano.

Unfortunately, this was not the case and we had to turn back. You never know how the weather is gonna be like until you get there, so be prepared and don't be too disappointed if you will not see the volcano.

Review Helpfulness: 2.5 out of 5 stars

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  • Written Feb 26, 2009
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Soda Y Express Kristina - Costa Rica

Soda Y Express Kristina

If you pay with American dollars...

We took American dollars with us when we left for Costa Rica and we exchange $50 in colones, therefore there were several places where we ate or bought stuff and we paid in American dollars. I was unpleasantly surprised to see that the exchange rate varied from store to store and from restaurant to restaurant. There was one particular restaurant in La Fortuna (Soda Y Express Kristina) that we ate dinner at and we were charged $1 more just because we paid in American dollars. The owner of the restaurant and his wife were there and they told us that this was because we were paying in dollars and not in colones. Our waiter came to us to apologize for this incident, telling us that the owner had too much to drink and this is why he was behaving this way. I wanted to argue with the owner, but my husband stopped me from doing it since it was just a matter of $1. I explained to him that is not the amount that bothers me, but the gesture of the owner. I let it go, but I left the restaurant with a bitter taste in my mouth and I will surely avoid eating here next time we are in the area.
I will consider exchanging about $200 in colones next time we visit Costa Rica, so we can avoid running into incidents like this one.

Review Helpfulness: 3.5 out of 5 stars

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  • Updated Apr 28, 2008
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Keep your eyes open for signs like this one! - Costa Rica

Keep your eyes open for signs like this one!

Challenging roads (part 2)

I am sure you read about the poor road signs in Costa Rica, but I really think that you have to experience it before really understanding this statement. Of course you will see good road signs while you are close to San Jose, but the further you go from the city, the worse the signs get. You can easily get lost on the roads. We got lost few times on the road from Alajuela to Manuel Antonio, but once we figured out what signs to look for, it was pretty easy to get there.

The maps you are given when you rent a car are not very detailed, so do not be surprised if you have to stop several times and ask for directions. Ticos are friendly people and they do like to help if you ask them. Even if you do not speak Spanish, they will do their best to explain to you how to get back on the road that takes you in the direction you want to go. We do not speak Spanish at all and we were so grateful that Ticos were patient with us and made sure we really understood the directions they gave us.

Review Helpfulness: 3.5 out of 5 stars

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  • Written Apr 28, 2008
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The very bad road to Arenal Lodge - Costa Rica

The very bad road to Arenal Lodge

Challenging roads (part 1)

In Costa Rica there are good roads, bad roads and very bad roads. I like to think that we drove on all of them and that there are no worse roads than some of the ones we drove on. If you have a car and you are the driver, make sure you feel comfortable driving a stick car on narrow roads, with lots of sharp turns. Do not attempt to pass the vehicle in front of you unless you have really good visibility on the opposite direction traffic. We have seen lots of cars in the ditch because the driver attempted to pass the vehicle in front and lost control of the car while doing it.

Another challenge are the narrow bridges that you encounter while driving. They are wide enough to accommodate just 1 car, so when you come close to the bridge you have to make sure there is no other car coming from the opposite direction.

Review Helpfulness: 3.5 out of 5 stars

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  • Updated Apr 28, 2008
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Do Not Feed the Animals Sign - Costa Rica

Do Not Feed the Animals Sign

Do not feed the animals

When you are vacationing in Costa Rica, you will most likely come close to some of the animals in the area you are visiting. You will see signs like this one in the picture in a lot of places. Try to stop the temptation to feed the animals. The latest reports issued show a lot of death in the animals due to heart failure triggered by human food. So the next time you come close to a monkey or any other kind of animals or birds, try to remember this report and do not feed them anything.

Review Helpfulness: 3.5 out of 5 stars

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  • Written Apr 28, 2008
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