9 independent reviews for Costa Rica adventure holiday

These full and frank independent reviews are from travellers who have booked directly through Responsible Travel. They are not edited by us or any of the companies we work with. Find the real story, from real travellers below.


review 12 May 2014

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

Seeing the wildlife

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Take a good camera and some binoculars

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

The money from tourism in costa rica is used to help the national parks and support the protected areas. I think many of the excursions from Arenal mostly helped Desafio but in Monte Verde the local community benefitted much more.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Very good the CEO (Mau) was fantastic and Costa Rica is a beautiful Country where real effort is being made to protect the natural resources.

review 12 Jan 2011

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

The boat trip from Puerto Viajhoe (?) to Tortuguero was relaxing, colourful and enjoyable - LOTs to see. Rain Forest track to Rara Avis, and stay, memorable.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Take LOTS of US dollars cos the meals and activities will cost you more than you think! Costa Rica is not a cheap holiday!

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment?

Not really. Provided low level employment to some local people but mere presence in remote and semi remote areas damages the very thing that attracts visitors! Several of the places visited were 'tourist traps'.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Just OK. Tour guide, although friendly, was poor and unreliable. Often gave vague information, information that was unclear or simple wrong! It was given to those who happened to be close - others missed it! Arrived late on several occasions (when bus full and ready to go).

Read the operator's response here:

Thank you for taking the time to complete your review for your Costa Rica Adventure tour on responsibletravel.com. Please accept our apologies for the delay in responding to you, we wanted to review your comments regarding your leader with our local office. We strongly believe customer feedback is the best tool we have to review and improve our services. Therefore, we thank you for your efforts in this regard. As the face representing our company, we understand the influence our leaders have on the success (or otherwise) of the tour. We are very alarmed to learn of your concerns and can assure you that they have not been taken lightly. Our local manager has been informed of the concerns and has reviewed them directly with Liza. We hope you can accept our sincere apologies for any disappointment and upset Liza may have caused you. We have also had the opportunity to review all of the feedback received on Liza's performance from your fellow travelers and results indicate that she has received mixed reviews. This is not mentioned in efforts to minimize your concerns in any way, however trust puts matter into perspective. That said, Liza will be closely monitored on her upcoming tours to ensure that she is delivering the positive performance we know she is capable of providing. Your business is valued and very much appreciated and we sincerely hope that despite this feedback, we will continue to be your service provider on future adventure trips. We thank you for bringing your concerns to our attention and allow us the opportunity to review and improve our services.

review 8 Sep 2010

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

White Water Rafting at La Fortuna. Unfortunately two of us fell out of our raft and we went down 4 rapids before we stopped. Still have the bruises now. I would still recommend people to do it.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Have a good sense of adventure. Donít take too many clothes it was so humid we didnít wear half of them. But a good waterproof is essential.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment?

Yes we constantly used local transport etc. Not sure about the impact to the environment as the carbon emissions by local transport due to the state of the roads helps but that would have been the seem whether we were there or not. By the sounds of it only the main highways are kept up to standard.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

It was one of the best holidays, a good crowd of people and a good time had by all.

review 8 Mar 2009

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

The whole variety of the trip in Costa Rica was excellent. I think one part i loved was the horse back riding around the lake heading towards Arenal. This was brilliant and we were able to have complete control of the horses and make the most of the riding.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Go for it. It was one of the best holidays I've done - with so many different types of activities - it covered everyone's likes. I'd say that it was definitely the type of holiday for people wanting to do lots of things. Not the most relaxing if people just want a pool side holiday.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment?

Yes, because we used local family run hotels and local transport most of the time, so I felt that money was going directly to the country. We tried to be good with reducing our usage of private taxis and using local transport, but we could also have been better.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

10 out of 10.

review 23 May 2009

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

The holiday offered a great mix of adventure and relaxation. Canyoning and Zip lining were definite highlights though!

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Go with an open mind and a sense of humour and Iím sure you'll have a great time!

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment?

Definitely we used local guides public transport all the hotels had environmental policies.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

The holiday was great I would recommend it to anyone who wants to see the best Costa Rica has to offer!

review 27 Jul 2009

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

Watching turtles lay eggs at Tortugeru. Swimming in waterfalls.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Be prepared for rain, a lot of it. Take more microfibre clothing than you were first going to. Do a few exercises before you go - it can be strenuous especially the hiking at Rara Avis. Those rubber boots they give you are Wellington boots! Don't miss the whitewater rafting at La Fortuna and the Monteverde ice cream.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment?

Somewhat, but could have involved them more. A homecooked meal with a family, music and dance for example. Local craftsmen.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Good, great wildlife, lots of adventure. Wasn't expecting so little sun.

review 11 Aug 2008

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

White water rafting, the most amazing zip-lining, the privilege of watching turtles lay eggs on a pitch black beach, eerie cloudforest and dripping rainforest, lava exploding from Arenal, magnificent hidden waterfalls...

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Go with an open mind, accept the mud and rain, try everything - the white-water rafting was one of the best experiences ever.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment?

Yes - we used locally run hotels and companies.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

An amazing adventure! Now I need a holiday.

review 29 Oct 2008

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

White water rafting from La Fortuna, excellent trip, particularly after the rains had swelled the river making it rougher than usual!!

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Everything is more expensive than suggested by the trip notes. Except to pay a bigger in country payment than suggested by the trip notes. Ensure you take a lot of mosquito repellent!!!

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment?

I think that was the aim of the trip, yes, and that local people were used for all aspects of the trip which was good. I think it minimised impact on the environment in the best ways it could.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

I loved the country, and the places we visited, however I would not book through this tour operator again. I was extremely disappointed with the service provided by them in comparison with the money paid. The accommodation standards, the activities not included and the guiding were all below standard.

Read the operator's response here:

We are sorry that you were disappointed with some aspects of your trip. We are constantly reviewing our trips based on the feedback we receive from our valued customers and aim to offer the best possible tours, staff and experiences. Please let us know any specific areas you believe the trip notes to be lacking, and we will gladly update them. Please let us know how you believe these areas could have been improved for the benefit of future travellers. Customer feedback is the best tool we have for improving our tours, staff and itineraries.

review 21 Apr 2007

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

Costa Rica was a very enjoyable and memorable holiday, the tour guide was absolutely excellent and everything within his power went smoothly. There are several memorable moments such as travelling up river to Totuguero and observing wonderful wildlife every few minutes, white water rafting on the river Toro and horseback riding along the shores of Lake Arenal.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Advice to travellers - lots of light waterproof clothing which dries quickly. Plenty of Deet!

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment?

Costa Rica is environmentally aware and tourism is tightly controlled. I had renewed hope that we can halt the destruction of the rain forest. The local guides were superb with good English and a wealth of knowledge. They have good university training and are very patriotic. The career in guiding is taken professionally and the wages are high. I feel impact on the environment of tourism is positive. Since it is main generator of wealth the Government appreciates the need to conserve the resources!

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Unedited reviews from other travellers

I am reborn! Simply the best holiday I have ever been on
Some great stories to tell the grandchildren. Would recommend to a friend
Very enjoyable
It was OK
A bit disappointing really
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