Any helpful hints or recommendations for useful things to bring?
Regardless of the season bring sun block, an umbrella, repellent and a camera to make the most of your Costa Rica beach vacation.
What about mosquitos?
Compared to other tropical areas mosquitos are minimal year round in Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica, especially during the dry season. If you visit during the rainy season and you’re a mosquito magnet bring a repellent that contains deet, otherwise, you can find regular repellent in local markets.
Do I need a car and can I rent one in Quepos?
A car isn’t necessary at the Discovery Beach House vacation villa, which is conveniently located to restaurants, shopping and we’re directly on the beach. Most of our guests find they leave their cars parked the majority of the time. The bus stops on the road in front and taxis are abundant.
You may want to rent a car if you’re staying at the Monkey House as the walk up to the main road will leave you sweaty. On the other hand if you want the exercise the walk will definitely get you in shape.
What’s the best way to rent a car?
Definitely rent a car before you come to Costa Rica. Some, but not all international car rental companies will give you U.S. rates. You’ll want to check around. If you rent after you arrive in Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica, the rates will be higher. Otherwise, our Concierge can take care of this for you.
How about public transportation?
Bus fare is around 80 cents. Cab fares vary from $6 to $8.
Is it safe?
Yes, the Discovery Beach House has 24-hour Security, an ADT alarm system, and is surrounded by a high fence. The Monkey House has an ADT alarm system and is hidden behind a tall wall.
Is there air conditioning?
Yes. The Discovery Beach House has 5 air conditioners, and the Monkey House has 2.
How do I get there from San Jose?
You can either take a 20-minute domestic flight on Sansa Airlines or Nature Air into the Quepos airport for around $75 each way, or make the 2½-hour scenic drive along the Pacific coast.
Where will I pick up the keys?
Our concierge will contact you and meet you at your Manuel Antonio vacation rental home with the keys.
What is the address?
There are no actual numbered street addresses in Costa Rica. Everyone picks up their mail at the post office or through mail services. Landmarks serve to identify locations. The official Discovery Beach House address is “next door to Hotel Karahe” (contiguo a Hotel Karahe).
The Monkey House address is “next door to Hotel Makanda” (contiguo a Hotel Makanda). Both of these descriptions work with taxi drivers. The mailing address is Apartado 260, Quepos, Costa Rica, 6350.
What are the telephones numbers where I can call or be reached?
The Discovery Beach House phone number is 011-506-2777-5276. Phones in Costa Rica have 8 digits.
Can I call long distance?
You may make long distance calls by purchase calling cards from local grocery stores. Super Joseth is nearby and has them.
Is there Internet?
If you travel with your laptop both houses have high speed wireless Internet service, otherwise, there are Internet Cafes in Manuel Antonio and Quepos. Now when we say high speed, we mean the highest speed available in Costa Rica.
Are there good restaurants nearby?
Yes! Manuel Antonio has an abundance of excellent restaurants offering a delicious variety of mouth-watering food. Starting with breakfast, Café Milagro has the best freshly ground coffee in town, banana pancakes, French toast, omelets, smoothies, etc. At night El Patio offers a delectable fusion cuisine you won’t find anywhere else.
If you’re looking for upscale restaurants, the Sunspot Grill at Hotel Makanda is right next door to the Monkey House. They have tasty fish and meat dishes, a great chicken breast stuffed with feta cheese, and the best variety of hamburgers in town. Agua Azul is a local’s favorite and Rafael’s Terazza’s has a delicious whole red snapper.
In Quepos, Escalofrio has great pizzas and authentic Italian gelato, L’Angolo Italian Deli has great sandwiches served on a baguette.
What about the night life?
Pick up a copy of Quepolandia for specific days and times for the local live music scene. Several places have live bands; Dos Locos, La Hacienda, Barba Roja, Victoria’s and La Cantina among others. Arco Iris is a disco just outside of town that opens around midnight. There are also a couple of casinos.
Who should I call should anything go wrong or in an emergency?
The number for our concierge, Sabrina, is 8335-5811.
What kind of home entertainment do you offer?
The Discovery Beach House has Sky TV, a plasma screen, DVD/CD players, and a DVD library.
The Monkey House has cable TV, and DVD/CD players. Bring along some DVDs.
How close are the beaches?
The Discovery Beach House is directly on the sand on Espadilla Beach. There are three nearby beaches within a 10-minute walking distance in Manuel Antonio National Park.
Are there beach towels at the house?
Is laundry service included?
The Discovery Beach House offers daily housekeeping service except on Sundays. Laundry service is free.
Is there an iron?
Yes, in both houses.
Do people speak English?
Spanish is the national language, however English is taught in the schools and is spoken in most restaurants and hotels.
Are there markets nearby?
Yes. Super Joseth is a mini-market within a five-minute driving distance and offers an impressive array of wine, beer, cheeses, snacks, etc. They can fill most of your vacation needs and deliver to your door. Their number is 2777-1095. Super Joseth recently opened a second mini-market on the beach about a 15-minute walk away. Quepos is just a ten-minute drive away and has several markets. Quepos also hosts an ocean-front farmer’s market, La Feria, on Friday evenings & Saturday mornings.
Is the electricity different in Costa Rica? Will I need a converter?
You won’t need a converter. The electricity is the same as in the U.S., 110 volts.
Can I drink the water?
Yes, the water is safe and potable.
What kind of animals will I see?
Red-backed squirrel monkeys, capuchins, howlers, coatimundis, iguanas, sloths, mot mots, toucans and countless other bird species.
Is there any wildlife that we should be aware of that may be dangerous?
If you’re near a river or lagoon a “Peligro Lagarto” sign means a crocodile may be lurking nearby.
Do you have info on tour operators?
Our concierge can answer all your questions and will be happy to book your tours. Canopy Safari is a must-do while you’re in Manuel Antonio. Even if you don’t like heights you can still enjoy gliding on cables through the rain forest canopy. Horseback riding, white water river rafting, canyoning, world-class fishing, sunset sail, and a mangrove tour are just a few of the activities you have to look forward to.
What is the rainy season like?
Most mornings are warm, beautiful, sunny and with some rain in the afternoon. Everything is lush and green.
What is the dry season like?
Warm and dry. It still rains but not as often as during the rainy season.
What is the temperature at night like during the rainy season?
The temperature is still warm but it can get a little chilly on occasion.
Are sweaters necessary?
You’ll need one for your flight but rarely in Manuel Antonio.
What should I wear?
Manuel Antonio is ultra casual, so leave your prom dress and tuxedo at home. Shorts and T-shirts are the norm. If you feel like dressing up, you can go to one of the upscale restaurants, although casual clothes are still acceptable. No one wears black during the day in the summer.