This page contains some useful suggestions which could help you with your stay in Costa Rica.
Even if Costa Ricans frequently speak English, life will be easier if you manage to speak some words in Spanish, expecially if you're asking for route information.
This is a brief dictionary of useful words:
izquierda: left derecha: right recto, derecho: straight on doblar: to turn esquina: corner carro: car avion: airplane bus: bus puente: bridge playa: beach
urbanizacion: touristic village restaurante: restaurant desayuno: breakfast almuerzo: lunch cena: dinner comida: meal cerveza: beer batido: milk shake jugo, zumo: juice agua: water
Renting a car
If you are going to rent an off-road vehicle or a car, please don't leave anything inside it when you park it: rented cars are easy to recognize by thieves, who won't hesitate to break a window to steal your objects. It's a good idea to leave your car in a guarded parking.
Each time you stop to refuel, you should ask the attendant to check your vehicle oil (aceite, in Spanish) and water (agua, in Spanish) levels.
Please be careful with highway police too: there are many patrols on the main routes, expecially on the interamerican highway. To avoid fines, please respect velocity limits, use safety belts and don't overtake when it's not permitted.
Finally, no parking areas inside towns are easy to recognize by the yellow colour of the nearby sidewalk.
Even though euro is well widespread and accepted, paying with euro in Costa Rica is not a business: shop keepers usually apply a 1 to 1 currency with dollar!
In the banks too the exchange will be bad, due to special taxes applied by the government on euro changing.
Buying in touristic and normal places
Generally, as it's obvious to expect, touristic places are more expensive than those usually utilized by the inhabitants.
In a tourist place, the same products is charged two or even three times more than the normal. So it would be great, any time you stop in a town out of tourist routes, to visit the local minimarket.
Protected flora and fauna
Costa Rica is widely committed about saving it's species at risk, even more if compared to the nearby countries.
To help Costa Ricans saving this paradise, you should remember that throwing object from car is forbidden (and fines are astronomical, too); and please don't leave any garbage around, expecially on the beaches.
Driving a vehicle on almost all of the beaches is forbidden, as is keeping shells or corals.
On the same beaches you could find some signals saying that there are tortugas eggs on incubation period ("huevos incubandose", in Spanish): please be very careful and do not disturb them, you could also be put under urrest for this!
Although many of them are nice to see, many Costa Ricans animals are very dangerous too. Many touristic inland or coastal towns have serpentarium or ranarium, places where you can go to learn something about these animals and the ways to defend yourself from them.
Usually, rolls of film with 100/200 ASA are good to make photos at this latitude.
If you mind making photos with high exposision times, such as nocturnal ones or sunsets, or like those done in forests, serpentarium and ranarium (all very obscure places), you should take a tripod with yourself.
Please remember that you shouldn't wait too much for developing your rolls of film: after some months they could be damaged.
Mauna Loa Surf Resort, Playa Avellanas de Santa Cruz, Costa Rica, Centroamérica
If you are looking for a site in Costa Rica to enjoy yourself practice sports sunbath and relax you'll find that there's no better place than Hotel Mauna Loa Guanacaste!Hotel Mauna Loa is placed in Playa Avellanas de Santa Cruz Guanacaste.From Maunaloa Surf Resort you can reach many beaches and tourists places of Costa Rica:Playa Negra Playa Junquillal Península de Nicoya Playa Tamarindo Playa Conchal Playa San Juanillo Guanacaste.At Maunaloa Hotel we'll be happy to help you with information about surfing sites of Guanacaste and how to reach other Costa Rican Surf Resorts Hotels Costa and Bungalows.Maunaloa Bungalows are equipped with every comfort which include air conditioning hot water shower (private) safe orthopaedic beds and free wireless connection to Internet.Mauna Loa Surf Resort is also equipped with a swimming pool with bar restaurant pizza pizzeria souvenirs shop gymnasium games area for kids relax area laundry service professional massages service and tropical garden.Hotel Mauna Loa Bungalows and Surf Resort is placed in one of the best areas of Costa Rica for surfing sites:the Península of Nicoya Province of Guanacaste.At only 300 metres from the Pacific Ocean our hotel is very good for those who want to surf.Playa Avellanas Playa Negra and Playa Tamarindo will satisfy everybody with their tall waves and reef and chance of amusement.At some metres from Playa Avellanas hotels you'll find bed and breakfast (b&b) habitaciones villas residences.Enjoy yourself!