Costa Rican Adventure w/ EF College Break FULL REVIEW

Hey fellow adventurers!

I am back with another EF College Break review!

It hasn’t even been a full 24 hours since I’ve arrived from Costa Rica and yet I am already eager to start writing about my trip.

For those of you who decided to click on this article, chances are you’re admiring this trip from afar or you’ve already booked this trip with EFCB and you want to know what awaits you. Well, I am here to give you a FULL review based on my personal experience and hopefully it will lend you all the information you may need.

Please keep in mind it’s not my job to tell you to book a trip with EFCB ( I am not employed by them), I am just a girl who loves to travel and then write about it.

You should know that this was my second time traveling with the company therefore my focus will be entirely on the Costa Rica trip, if you want more general information I would suggest my first article: Traveling with EF College Break FULL Experience + Review + 411

And to make it easier I will also break down all the information into sub categories so that you can pick and choose what to read.



Day One: Arriving in San Jose, Costa Rica 

Prior to your trip you will be given all your flight info. If you’re one of the lucky ones you will be arriving early in the day. Since I departed from Los Angeles, I was one of the first people to arrive along with three other girls. Most of the group arrived in the afternoon and a few at night.

I am glad I arrived early because it gave me the chance to nap, shower and explore the town prior to our group introduction.

Meeting Tour Director

My tour director was insanely AWESOME. I cannot be more thankful for the tour director we got. He was genuinely friendly, kind and knowledgeable about the country, sites, culture and animals. He was the best tour director out of both my EF trips. ( Note: Tipping will be discussed below.)

Group Introduction

Once the majority of the group arrives in San Jose, you will have the chance to meet everyone. It isn’t necessarily a mixer of any kind but more of a quick meeting. Everyone introduces themselves and plans to either go out for the night or have dinner. The first day you are pretty much allowed to do and go where you please.

Hotel #1 Review: Hotel Villas Tournon

First of all I am the only person who hit the jackpot on this subject. Because I traveled alone and our group was an uneven number and I arrived early, I was the only person who scored the single room.

Everyone shared a room with one other person the entire trip. Which is not bad compared to Europe -where you have to share room with up 4 to 6 girls.

Our first hotel was nice, a little far from downtown but only a 15-20 minute walk. The room was clean for the most part and was provided with the basic toiletries. For breakfast they provided toast, eggs, rice and coffee. All which were delicious!

Keep in mind that this is the hotel you arrive in and the hotel you will be leaving from.



For the most part this is an easy breezy day. Please note that on the EF website Day Two is different. The reason it’s different is due to timing. Because the Paos Volcano erupted a few weeks prior to my trip – the area was closed off to all travelers therefore we were unable to hike the volcano. Instead, it was replaced with a farm tour.

Coffee Plantation Tour:

This was a simple tour letting you know how coffee is made and a bit about the history. To be honest this was one of my least favorite portions of the tour. Even though it was nice and interesting and I definitely learned a lot about the production of coffee, I still found myself daydreaming a little.

Corso Lecheria Tour:

This tour was a little more fun because they take the entire group on a farm tour all while riding a tractor.  The views from this spot are fantastic because it’s all hills and greenery. The cool part was when everybody got the chance to milk the cows. Being a raised a city girl, I never thought that I would do something like this. I was kinda freaking out but in the end I was super excited about milking cows! LOL!

We also fed chickens, saw rabbits and pigs and ended the tour with some incredible cheese.



Travel to Next City

After the farm tour, there is a lunch break and then a 3 hour bus drive to the La Fortuna region.

Tip: Download movies and music to your tablet or phone. Do this prior to your trip. Wi-Fi is not always the best in some areas. 

Hotel #2 Review: Las Colinas

Out of all the hotels we stayed at this one was my second favorite. It was located right at the city center, it had a balcony and bar overlooking the city and the rooms were clean. The breakfast was also well served here: toast, eggs, pancakes, and coffee.


DAY THREE: Hike La Fortuna Waterfall + Kayak on Lake Arenal + ( BONUS: HANGING BRIDGES) + HOT SPRINGS

This was one of the busiest days! The wettest, the most fun and one of my personal faves! So be ready to do a lot this day!

Hike La Fortuna Waterfall

The day starts at 7 am with breakfast and then a short drive to the waterfall. The waterfall itself is SPECTACULAR and one my favorite activities from the entire trip. However, the hike down was not the easiest and the hike back up was extremely difficult. I suggest taking breaks, going slow and comfortable shoes. The hike is only a few minutes but strenuous because it’s all stairs.

The waterfall though is worth every minute though. The water was so nice to swim in and it was my favorite photo opp. We stayed here for roughly an hour and a half.



Bonus Activity: Hanging Bridges

This is not an item listed on the official EF itinerary, instead something that I and a couple of other girls in the group decided we would do during our four-hour gap.

I honestly highly recommend doing this activity. When I think back to my most adventurous moment of the trip I think of the hanging bridges. The entire area was super cool and really gave that jungle feeling. I felt like an explorer here, of course it started raining like crazy while we were there but it was definitely worth it. If you decide to do this activity, I highly suggest wearing COMFORTABLE SHOES. YOU WILL WALK A LOT.


Lake Arenal is right by the hanging bridges, and by “right by”, I mean a 30 – 40 minute hike. It was a brutal walk to the lake but we did it. We met the rest of the group here about mid-day for our kayak tour. I was pretty exhausted at this point so I opted for the boat ride instead. EF gives you the choice to either kayak or ride the boat.  Myself and a few other girls chose to take the boat ride. It was a nice, relaxing ride overlooking the lake and what they call snake island.

Those that did the kayaking tour loved it and even got to swim in the water.

Hot Springs

After the kayaking we went straight to the hot springs. This was an overall fun night. Essentially it was a small water park with hot springs, a wet bar and water slides. There were no lines and basically a great way to unwind. They also provided us with a nice dinner here.



Again this day may look different on your EF itinerary. The first thing you do on the fourth day is drive 3 hours to Monteverde. The guide then gives you time to settle in. We were suppose to take a nature walk afterwards but due to the heavy rains we rescheduled. So you may or may not go on the nature walk this day.

Night Walk Tour

What we did do was the night walk tour. This was an optional tour for an additional $20. About half of the group decided to take this tour including myself. And it was a very unique experience.

We spent about an hour and a half exploring a jungle area in Monteverde. We got extremely drenched but saw lots of cool creatures. The point of this night walk is to see more animals. We saw tarantulas, all sorts of bugs, snakes, birds and even a horse. The night walk was fun because it’s just the group, a guide, the darkness and your flashlight.

Tip: Take closed-toed shoes, if possible rain boots. Don;t take shoes you’re planning on wearing the next day. They will get soaked. 

Hotel #3 Review: Hotel El Sueno

Out of all the hotels we stayed at this one was by far the worst. My room was clean but I had zero hot water. Other people had roof leaks, bugs or an overall dirty room. I had a few bugs and was careful not to leave anything out that would attract more bugs. The staff was nice and the breakfast was okay. This hotel did not win best breakfast for me. I also ate lunch in the hotel and ended up getting a stomach ache after. Nothing severe, but enough for me to not have lunch there again.



Similar to-day three, we had an action packed day five. Everything place we went to and every activity we did was a memorable adventure!

Horseback Riding

This was a lot harder than I imagined but something I will never forget. We rode horses up and down a trail in Monteverde. The views here were extraordinary so try to look around you even if you find yourself too concentrated on your horse. The horses understand what they are there to do and know the trail well but each horse does have their own personality.



The most THRILLING part of the trip was the zip lining! It was easy to do and the views were GRAND & MAJESTIC! There were nine platforms, two long ones. The last one was about a mile or more long. And the views were enough to take your breath away.

At this location you can do other extreme activities including bungee jumping, Tarzan swing and more.

Tip: If you buy the DVD with photos make sure your pictures are indeed inside. I ended up paying $10 for a blank disc and don’t want this to happen to anybody else. 

Local Food Experience

The rest of the day is pretty much free to explore or book another activity. It’s until 8 pm where you have the local food experience. Which, is pretty much a night out at the bar and some dancing.



Again, this day will look different on your EF itinerary. Due to the rain certain things were shifted. Before our three-hour bus drive to the Central Pacific Coast we took our nature walk that we were suppose to take on day four.

Nature Walk

This was a very simple one-hour nature walk around the cloud forest. This is where your guide will talk about the trees, plants and animals.

Free Night

Once you arrive at your next stop, the rest of the day is pretty much yours to enjoy.

Hotel #4 Review: Hotel Mar de Luz

After the horrible hotel in Monteverde, we were blessed with an awesome hotel. This hotel was by far my most favorite of the entire trip. It was clean, we had hot water and the rooms were super nice. I again rejoiced in my single cozy room. It was also right by all the shops and restaurants and across the street from the beach.



This is the day to splash around in the waters, lay out on the sand, see loads of monkeys and make sure the raccoons don’t take your bags!

Manuel Antonio National Park

After a short hike to the beach, you pretty much have the entire morning to yourself at the beach. The beach is beautiful, the waves are super calm and the animals make it so much more entertaining. I saw so many monkeys and had to keep my eye out the entire time because the raccoons kept trying to get everyone’s bags.

Tip: Don’t take any bags of food. If you take food, only take it in zip-lock bags and have your food pre-made. Also, don’t leave your bags unattended they will get taken away. AND WEAR TONS OF SUNSCREEN. 




For my trip the crocodile tour was moved to the eighth day. This was a relaxing and cool way to see all the crocodiles living in the Tarcoles River. We were able to get up close to the crocodiles and even see some of the baby crocodiles. There were also tons of different bird species to see on this boat ride.

After the crocodile cruise we drove back to our first city and our first hotel. The rest of the day was a free day.





Whitewater Rafting

This was our last activity on the trip. Whitewater rafting in the Sarapiqui river and it was super cool. I think it was the best way to end the trip. Our guides were so much fun, and really made the experience that much better. They provided us with pineapples and watermelon during the rafting and afterwards fed us a very delicious lunch.


Goodbye dinner

This was a very nice way to say goodbye to everyone. They fed us a great dinner and then provided us a bar area to drink and dance. This is also when you tip your guide and bus driver.


I mentioned above that my tour guide was AMAZING. And because of that I truly felt he deserved a generous amount. EFCB recommends that you tip $3-$5 a day. So, if you tip $5 for 10 days that should be about $50 per person. To me this is a personal thing that depends on how you felt about your tour guide and the amount you choose to give. But to be honest, my tour guide was so good I felt that $50 was not enough. I chose to give $80 and I know of others who also gave more than $50 but again it really depends on how you feel. The bus driver should also get a tip, our bus driver was helpful and timely and EFCB recommends you tip $2 per day, so that would be $20 for a 10 day trip.

After this trip, I do think that guides should work hard to earn those tips. I don’t think a tip is earned by just going through the motions but by providing a genuine and memorable experience for us their customers.



EFCB not only arranges a pick up from the airport but also a ride back to the airport. Chances are many of the people in the group will leave at the same time. They make the transportation really easy and hassle free.



I truly enjoyed my trip to Costa Rica. I chose this place is the first place for the adventure and I think that that’s what I got and more. I would go back to Costa Rica, but this time I would explore more beaches and more of the waterfalls. That’s one of the drawbacks of traveling with EFCB is that I really hoped we would see more waterfalls. And even though this was second trip with EFCB, I think I would do another trip with them.


WHAT TO PACK (10 days)

If you are going to Costa Rica during the wet/rainy season I HIGHLY suggest you bring the following:

  • Rain Jacket (2 if possible)- you could also bring a poncho but I think the rain jacket is better
  • Tennis Shoes- for the hiking
  • Water shoes
  • Rain boots
  • Sunscreen- even if its cloudy you can still tan/sunburn
  • Bikinis- I used 5 in 10 days
  • Board Shorts- for the rafting
  • Beach Towel- I brought one and just washed it in the hotel
  • Long Pants- 1
  • Shorts- 1 or 2
  • Light t-shirts
  • Dresses- for going out






I am happy to answer any questions you may have, leave them below! I hope my article helped you and if there’s anything I may have forgotten to write about let me know below!


PURA VIDA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!



38 Comments Add yours

  1. Corey says:

    Hi Denise! I am planning on doing the Costa Rica trip as well.

    What is the “dry/sunny season?” compared to the wet season when you went.
    I read your Europe trip review too, so cool!
    What is the typical gender breakdown/ratio?

    I noticed you stayed in hostels in Europe and hotel rooms in Costa Rica. Do they tell you this before hand? Can you op to have your own hotel room?

    What’s the nightlife like with the group in your expierence? Do people go out to the bars and clubs or most people stay in each night? I myself am a beer drinker and love to try local brews. Do people hook up at all? I keep imagining something like the “Real World” on MTV jaja.

    Sorry for my english and so many questions.



    1. Hi Corey!

      Thank you for checking out both my articles.

      Honestly after going to Costa Rica during it’s “wet season”, its hard for me to imagine a dry one! However, the dry season is like their summer. Wet season is like their winter.

      So for my Europe trip the group was larger and mostly consisted of girls. There were about 4-5 boys. And for my Costa Rica trip, the group was smaller and there were only 2 boys. So, plan on there being mostly girls.

      So, I think the reason why in Europe we had hostels and Costa Rica hotels is most likely due to price. I know EFCB tries to travel the cheapest way and hostels are more common in Europe. I don’t think there are many , if any, in Costa Rica. So, they don’t actually tell you until 30 days before your trip where you’ll be staying at exactly and what time you will actually be leaving. But if you’re doing the Costa Rica trip I would plan on hotels. if you are doing Europe, I would plan on hostels. Also, to be honest the hostels weren’t terrible. I mean they are not as great as hotels but they get the job done. We had some nice hostels in Europe and some ‘whatever’ hostels in other parts. As for booking your own stay, I would try to speak to a EF rep, but it would be more difficult to stay away from your group because there are alot of group excursions. And easier for your tour director as well.

      So in both Europe and Costa Rica most of the group went out every night. ESPECIALLY THE BOYS. lol Most people went to bar hopping and to clubs. In Europe they did a lot of pub crawls. So I would not worry too much about their not being enough night life, but I do recommend to be safe and stay in a group while out at night. As for “hooking up”, YES! LOL They keep it “quite” but rumors spread. Chances are people in your group will hook up. lol

      Anyways Corey, I hope I answered all your questions!!! If you have any more feel free to ask! Have an amazing time!!!!

      And thanks for reading.



  2. Anusha says:

    Hey Denise! How much would recommend budgeting to spend over the trip while there (meals/shopping/other side trips etc.)?

    Also how did the meals work? Did you all stop at one place for lunch/dinner along the way or is it more fend for yourself haha.


    1. Hi Anusha!

      Thank you for reading!

      For ten days, I spent around $300, however I didn’t buy souvenirs. I would suggest $500 so you can be comfortable. But there’s a great chance you’ll spend less.

      If you pre-purchase all the activities that EF offers you shouldn’t have to worry too much about other side trips. However, you do have free time for these, so I would take extra cash.

      Food at Costa Rica, I was a lot pricier than I and the rest of the group imagined, since most of the time you will be in touristy spots.

      Depending on the day’s plans, some days you will eat with the entire group. And they take you to places where you only pay $5 or $10. And then other days you go off on your own.

      Breakfast is free everyday at each hotel you stay at and is actually pretty delicious.

      And when you have to take bus rides from one city to the next, they always stop for snacks.

      Hope I answered your questions! Have and AWESOME TRIP!!!!!!!!



  3. Brittany Nathan says:

    Hi! Reading your experience has me excited for mine! Question, for going out do you normally take public transportation out to the bars/clubs? And did you bring any snacks or anything like that with you on the trip?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Brittany!

      Yay I am so excited for you! Costa Rica is awesome! If you go out to bars/club most people pitched in for a cab. Busses didn’t run that late. But as long as you’re with a group you should be fine.

      As for snacks, I would get snacks from the liquor stores in Costa Rica for like “hotel snacking.” But I didn’t bring food from home, also most of the food in Costa Rica cost the same as any touristy city, a lot of us went with the assumption that food with be significantly cheaper and it’s not. but for the most part the food is pretty good.

      Hope this helps, have a fun and safe trip!

      -Denise S.


    2. Emily E Fonseca says:

      Hi! When are you going on your trip to Costa Rica? I just booked mine for July! So excited. And so thankful for this blog. Lol. It has answered so many of my questions already.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Brittany says:

        Hey! Yes this blog has been super helpful always good to get a firsthand experience. But I’m going July 6! You?

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Brittany Nathan says:

    Thank you!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Emily E Fonseca says:

      I am going July 13! I’m so anxious/excited to see who is in my group!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Emily Elizabeth Fonseca says:

    Hi! I am so glad you have made this blog, it is extremely helpful! I am getting ready to book my Costa Rica trip for July 2018. I am pretty sold on it, but I do have just a couple of questions to ease my mind.

    1. I am thinking of going solo. Were there a lot of people in your group also traveling solo? My only fear is going with a group full of couples/friends going together. I don’t think this will stop me because I am social and excited about meeting new people. But I definitely hope there will be several other solo travelers!

    2. Do you feel like the rain lessened your experience at all? I would love to go during their dry season, but with my schedule July would work best.

    3. Did you feel safe while there? (I have a mom who is worrying about me traveling solo haha)

    Thank you so much again for your help! This blog helps tremendously.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Hi Emily Elizabeth,

      I am so happy that you found my blog post useful…. truth be told I think your gonna love love love Costa Rica! Honestly 10 days is NOT ENOUGH there is sooo mich to see.

      1. I went alone and there were probably like 20 people in my group. Most of my group were solo travelers. I feel that as long as youre open to making friends you will and honestly everyone there is looking to make friends. Ive done 2 trips with EF and everyone on both trips were always kind and chill. I notice that towards the end everyone has that group of people they stick too. I think within the first 2 days you will know who you want to hang out with. Also, Costa Rica is different from other trips because you have to travel with your group a lot more. So 95% of the time you will be with your group.

      2. And as for the rain I dont think so. The only issue I had was taking the wrong shoes to a jungle hike. They got super soaked and I had to pay the hotel to dry them for me. If you go during rain season TAKE A RAIN JACKET. I made the mistake of taking a poncho because it was less expensive … trust me the rain jacket would have been a life saver. I also suggest taking two sweaters because u will get wet and you want to have a dry option. I also suggest taking comfortable shoes . As for dressing up most girls just took cute sandals. Id stress taking 2 pairs of comforatble
      Shoes or rainboots just in case. It really does rain alot in Costa Rica.

      3. I always felt safe because if I wasnt with my group I was with a group of friends. I would not recommend going anyplace alone in CR. Especially at night. If you go out dancing or to a bar stick with the people you came with. Make sure to always get back to your hotel with a group of people.

      Other than that you should be safe and have a great trip!

      Tip: Food isnt as cheap as some would think its the same price as other tourist cities. I and a few others were unaware of this.

      Have fun!

      -Denise S


  6. Brittany says:

    Hi Denise! Another question lol do you recommend wearing a bathing suit under your clothes since a lot of the activities involve water or getting wet? Also during the bus rides do they make stops for the bathroom, snacks, etc? Are taxis there prevalent everywhere?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. For the most part I didn’t have to wear my bathing suit underneath my clothes(maybe twice). Your tour director should let you know what you need or should bring for each day, the day before.

      Do you know your tour director already? I had a really good tour director for my trip so I hope you get him.

      Yes, the bus rides can be long sometimes but they do stop for bathroom breaks, snack and lunch.

      I don’t recall too much on the taxis. I don’t remember seeing them as often. But maybe it’s cause I wasn’t looking for them. For the most part I either traveled with the group, or walked with people places. The one time I took a cab it was set up for me by the hotel which helped alot. Some people did take taxis but I am not sure if it was easy for them. It should be though, as long you’re in a city area you’ll be fine.

      Hope this helps! =D =D =D

      – Denise S.


      1. Brittany says:

        Okay sounds good! Just trying to plan lol..but yeah i think I do know, his name is Eric Chavarría!

        Liked by 1 person

  7. brittany says:

    Were there a lot of snakes and bugs around? I just heard that they have poisonous snakes everywhere there =o

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The only time I saw snakes was during the night time jungle tour. Out and about I didn’t. There is a lot of bugs. But overall you should be fine, just have your bug spray.


      -Denise S


  8. Evelyn says:

    Hello, I thoroughly enjoyed your post about this and I’m thinking of booking my Costa Rica trip because of this!
    I do have a question about free days.
    What did you do for your free days and was it easy to navigate around??
    Thank you!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Evelyn,

      I am so glad to know you enjoyed my post and that you might be going to Costa Rica! So we had certain days that were like free in the mornings or free at night. Depending on whether or not something was planned or if you maybe weren’t doing an excursion. For the most part compared to the Europe trip I took with EF, Costa Rica has less free days. The schedule is more compact , but the days or half days you get free it is easy to plan something. The hard part is figuring out whose doing what and if people want to do the same thing as you. You will notice groups sometimes stick together or spread out depending on the activity.

      One of the things that I did in Costa Rica for my free time were the hanging bridges in the Arenal Region. That was alot of fun, around 7 of us girls all got taxis and went up there and then met with the group. Others went on hike, had a spa day, ate, or took naps. Its pretty much up to you.

      My tour guide was very good and helpful so he made it very easy to plan so that you do your own thing but dont miss out on the big group stuff.

      Hope this helped =D

      -Denise S.


  9. Evelyn says:

    Thank you!! That’s so helpful!
    Also, there’s an option for travel protection and I know you’ve traveled with EF 2 times already. Did you purchase the travel protection or it wasn’t necessary??

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Evelyn,

      So I am like super paranoid and so I just bought the travel protection twice. I never needed it but I bought it because I was thinking it be “safer than sorry.” lol So if this sounds like you, then I would say just to get it. But myself I didn’t end up needing it and I don’t think anyone else in the group did. I just felt safer knowing I had it.

      -Denise S.


  10. Evelyn says:

    Also, what time did you wake up in the mornings?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Youre welcome, I am glad you reached out!

      I think I would wake up around 7ish. I might be mistaking but that sounds about right from the best of memory.

      Other tips, just have fun, take comfty shoes (2 pairs if going in rainy season) and again if you go during rainy season I suggest a good rain jacket (no poncho) , and a sweater.

      Let me know if anything else comes to mind!

      -Denise S.


  11. Brittany says:

    Hey Denise! Another question, do we need to take adapters or will they have some available? Thanks!


    1. I would day take your own adapter. I got mine from Target, I did the international one and it worked perfectly.


  12. Kyrah says:

    Hey Denise,
    I had a quick question about vaccines for ya! Did you obtain any of the CDC recommend vaccines such as Typhoid, or Hep A&B before gong to CR? I guess I’m curious to see how necessary they are in regards to the good and water in the country.


    1. Hi Kyrah,

      Great Question! So what I did was call my doctor at Kaiser Permanente about a month or so prior to let them know about my trip. They have a specific department that specializes on vaccinations for trips etc. They ask you a few questions and then they schedule you in. So my memory is a little blurry on what vaccinations I got. However, I do remember getting Hep A (I believe) and another. HOWEVER, the nurse suggested them to me as a general vaccine to get for my health not specifically just for the trip since those are a process of 3 shots throughout the year. So my suggestion is to call your doctor. They will know what you need depending on where you are going. Enjoy your trip! Hope this helped!

      -Denise S.


  13. Brittany Nathan says:

    So what time do you think the flights will be leaving? I am just trying to get a window, I should get my flight info in a few weeks. Just trying to plan lol..I’m leaving from Florida.


    1. HI Brittany Nathan,

      When I left for Costa Rica my flight left at night. I was departing from Los Angeles, however it all depends on where you’re coming from. And when I did the London Trip I departed mid-day. Hope this helps! Have a SUPER FUN trip!


  14. Jennifer Ancinelli says:

    I will be going on this trip in July and super excited! Your post was very helpful! I think what I’m struggling with most is packing. What did you find most girls wore on the day trips? Was it athletic wear, long sleeves, shorts/pants? How did you find the temperature?
    Also what size of luggage did most travellers bring?


    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Jennifer,

      I am beyond excited for you! So I went during rainy season, so it rained a lot but it was humid!

      I would suggest to take light clothing.

      Beach days- Bikini(2-3), Light Tank Top , Shorts (soft material, not denim)
      Hiking Days- Light Tank Top, Comfortable Bottoms
      Day outfits- Lights tops, summer dresses, shorts, sandals
      Nightlife- Flowery Dresses, Cute sandals

      I highly recommend taking two pairs of sneakers. I went during rainy season and depending on the activity, your shoes could get soaked. So for shoes I’d say 2 pairs of walking shoes and a cute pair of sandals.

      Take clothes you can wear more than once. Don’t take thick heavy clothes. If it’s still rainy season I highly suggest taking a good rain jacket and a regular light sweater for rain.

      I spent most of my days either in bikinis with a light top on top and shorts. Or crop top and shorts or just flown summer dresses.

      Mostly everyone took a regular sized luggage where they had to check it in. I didn’t I just took a small carry on and made everything fit. It’s totally up to you!

      For water rafting- take longer shorts, don’t wear bikini bottom.

      Take a beach towel too.

      Hope this helps, let me know if I missed anything! Enjoy your trip!


  15. alex schmidt says:

    I am hoping to take a trip with EF, however the person I was going with ended up not being able to come with me. I am thinking about still signing up and going alone, but am a little nervous. What did you think about going alone?


    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Alex!

      I say do it! I did both my trips alone and I had a blast! I noticed that people that go alone actually end up meeting more people within the group. People that go together tend to stay together and miss out on meeting others. Plus, you don’t want to miss out on an opportunity to go out and see he world because somebody couldn’t come with you. =D

      Let me know if you have any other questions!

      Hope this helps!

      – Denise S.


  16. Brittany Nathan says:

    Hey Denise! I have a question, I’ll be getting to Costa Rica early in the am around 930, probably before check in. What do you recommend doing (that’s safe, dont really feel comfortable wandering alone) I know we can stay at the hotel before check in however.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You can actually walk over to downtown area of San Jose. It’s like a 15 minute walk (depending on where you’re staying), you can ask the hotel lobby how to get there. I went with a few girls, there are shops and places to eat. And of course be careful!

      You will be picked up your EFCB tour director, so you can always ask him where you can go and hang out before the entire group arrives.

      Hope this answers your question! Have a fun and safe trip! If you have any other questions do let me know!

      – Denise S.


  17. Lauren Ventriglia says:

    Hi Denise,

    I’m going on this trip in August, what kind of bag or backpack did you bring on the trip? (i.e. Would a small backpack be better than a purse? What did you bring for the water-centered day trips?).

    This guide was super helpful by the way. Thanks in advance!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Lauren!

      I am so glad this guide helped you! So I took with me a regular luggage for my things. But as for everyday use out and about I used a regular little backpack for my things. I just kept my wallet, GoPro, sweater/poncho, and little things like maps. I just packed the backpack light, in case I wanted to buy something. Plus, I also didn’t want to carry too much.

      And water-days. I would pre-dress in my room. So I’d do bikini and then shorts and t-shirt on top or a dress. Then use the clothes I came with as my dry clothes afterwards. I would take with me, GoPro, wallet, cell, (I borrowed sunscreen and bug because mine were too large and taken at the airport. lol) I also brought a towel too. That took up the most space.

      Hope I answered all your questions!

      Have a wonderful and safe trip!

      – Denise


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