I just got back from the best honeymoon ever! Granted, it has been the only honeymoon I have ever been on, but trust me my obsessive need to plan definitely worked in my favor for this vacation.
After considering a few options, I decided that Costa Rica was the perfect destination for our honeymoon. I wanted a place that would have equal parts relaxation and adventure. Costa Rica definitely meets both requirements.
If you are considering Costa Rica for your honeymoon or vacation I hope my time spent planning helps you plan your trip.
I live in South Dakota. We only get a few pleasant months out of the year so I certainly didn’t want to go on our honeymoon during summer. Wait until those horrible winter months so you have a warm trip to look forward to.
The best times to travel to Costa Rica are mid-December through April. This time frame is considered the dry season but that also means it is the more expensive time to travel. My personal opinion is why pay to travel somewhere and be miserable so I would recommend going during the dry season.
At first I thought we would go over Christmas but after researching prices, flights, etc I found that the week before the holiday would save us a lot of money.
After much deliberation and tons of hours reading reviews I decided to book our entire stay at the Westin Golf Resort & Spa, Playa Conchal.
I knew I wanted an all-inclusive resort. Dealing with money on a vacation always gives me anxiety and with an all-inclusive I can order whatever I want without constantly thinking of the price.
I chose to stay on the west coast of Costa Rica because I definitely wanted a beach honeymoon. All the information I gathered recommended the northern province of Guanacaste on the Pacific coast if I mostly wanted a beach setting.
A stay in a tree house in the lush Rainforest would have made for some awesome photos but I don’t enjoy feeling damp.
The Westin was wonderful because there were numerous restaurants within the resort. Each meal could be a different cuisine. The food was absolutely fabulous.
The spa was certainly a luxury we enjoyed.
There are two pools – one main and one for the adults-only section.
The best part about the Westin is that it is right on the beach. Although the beach is public, it is so much better than many other popular honeymoon spots. Vendors on the beach do not hassle you and are extremely polite. I felt so safe that I even left my purse on my beach chair in full view of everyone while I went swimming in the ocean.
Sun, drinks, and great food – we were a happy couple!
There is so much to do in Costa Rica!
From your resort you can book excursions. Some people recommend booking through outside vendors located on the beach to save money, but I liked the ease and security of booking through the resort. In no way did I feel ripped off.
We chose to do a half-day Sunset Catamaran Cruise. On this excursion we got to enjoy a boat ride (with only three other couples because we went on a Wednesday) with drinks and food included. The catamaran took us to a private beach where we were given the option to snorkel – so fun! On the return trip the sunset was stunning.
I had to do ziplining in Costa Rica because it claims to have the best ziplining in the World. Afterwards, I would have to agree. We planned a full day trip to the Arenal Volcano National Park. On the way to ziplining we stopped at a well-known coffee shop, had a good lunch, and then took a boat trip over Lake Arenal.
The ziplining itself was incredible. You get some instructions and a few short practice zips before you take off. The ziplining in Arenal is no joke, if you unsure of ziplining this is probably not the trip for you. You go SO FAST!! The ziplines are incredibly long. Often you can’t see anything because of the fog and how high you are off the ground, extremely thrilling.
After ziplining our excursion included visiting some local hot springs where we could finally get warm and have some alcoholic drinks. Then we went to dinner at a local resort before heading back.
Lastly, we also chose to spend a couple of hours at the spa at our resort. On a honeymoon you should definitely book a romantic couples massage, I even talked my husband into a facial.
Other Costa Rican activities to choose from include; golfing, surfing, kayaking, fishing, riding ATVs, white water rafting, scuba diving, rock climbing, horse back riding, and so much more!
If I ever go back to Costa Rica, and I certainly plan on it, I would like to see the La Fortuna Waterfall, hike some of the hanging bridges, and visit the Monteverde Cloud Forest.
(Originally posted Jan. 19th, 2015)