Destination: Green Season? Planning Your Costa Rican Destination Wedding for the Rainy Season

Costa Rican destination wedding tent

In the green season, a Costa Rican destination wedding is all about contingencies and backup plans. Like beautiful, romantic tents and fairy lights, in case it rains.

A Costa Rican destination wedding – there’s something inherently romantic in the thought of it, isn’t there?

You have a wedding vision in mind. Chances are, it includes the melodies of crashing waves and harmonizing bird song. There’s soft sand and cerulean backdrops to your photos. And, most likely, your dream day includes the warm Costa Rican sun.

Aaaand, end scene.

Because, for reasons beyond your control, you cannot schedule your wedding during the high season – during those golden months that all the wedding advice seems to tell you are the “best months.” December, January, February, March… well, they don’t work for your schedule.

And now, you’re frantically googling Costa Rican destination weddings in the rainy season. How much does it really rain? Are we talking a few sprinkles or more like apocalyptic, monsoon-level downpours? Are any venues equipped for the rain? Does everything shut down? Mayday, mayday!

How realistic is your dream of a wedding during Costa Rica’s “rainy” season?

As it turns out, pretty realistic! So, take heart. We’ll help you navigate the path from here to destination wedding during rainy season. No ponchos required.

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The Costa Rican Casado – What’s That?

Costa Rican casado

For $4-$10+, you can get dig into the national dish: a Costa Rican casado

Open up a menu in almost any Costa Rican restaurant, and you’ll be greeted with the casado.

Casado? Your Spanish-to-English dictionary says that means “married.” Who says what now?

Welcome to Costa Rica’s national dish and most popular lunchtime special, the famed casado: white rice, black or red beans, cooked veggies (aka picadillo), and/or salad, plus your choice of protein (chicken, beef, fish, or eggs), usually with a side of cooked plantains.

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Destination Joy: 9 Tips to Identify Perfect (for you) Tamarindo Vacation Rentals

Casa Ventanas Tamarindo vacation rentals

When only an ocean-view pool will do, we call that a “must” in your search of Tamarindo vacation rentals. Pictured: The lovely Casa Ventana, a luxury vacation home set on a hillside in Tamarindo’s premier gated community.

Tamarindo vacation rentals are not created equal.

That’s not to say that some are better than others, but rather that some homes are suited to some guests and other homes are suited to other guests. Okay, and some are not suited to anyone. (We don’t list any of these, thankfully!)

This post is about all those lovely, sometime spectacular Tamarindo vacation rentals that might be suited to you: How can you pick from Luxury Home A and Luxury Home B, or Ocean-View Condo A and Ocean-View Condo B? How can you assess the possibilities and then identify the perfect vacation home for you?

Let’s start with what this: We’re going to leave out the super-obvious bits, like being sure to read every listing, in full, paying meticulous attention to the amenities list, and studying each photo in detail. Because we know you’ll naturally do those things.

What we will cover are some of the most important, yet not always considered details. They may look obvious – see Tip 1: Price Point – but we promise, there’s more to each than meets the eye. Here we go:

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Property of the Month: Casa Ilios

Casa Ilios Tamarindo Vacation Rental

Welcome to Casa Ilios, a vacation home in Tamarindo truly worthy of the label, spectacular

Who says you can’t have it all?

It’s a warm afternoon. The sun is shining – and by shining, we mean it’s bright and shimmering over the pool and ocean – and the Pacific has whipped up a salty sea breeze. The curtains are billowing, beckoning you poolside. Sunset is scheduled for T minus 45 minutes.

Almost as importantly, you have a glass of ice-cold fruity something in your hand (side note: In Costa Rica, we think wine officially counts as a fruit. As does lemon in your beer!) and fresh-from-the-boat seafood is grilling. The elegant thatched rancho and its expansive outdoor table are set for dinner. Life is good.

This is perfection. This is the zenith of “having it all.” This is Casa Ilios.

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Off the Beaten Path: A Visit to Guaitil, the Pottery Capital of Costa Rica

Guaitil, cradle of Chorotega pottery

Guaitil, the cradle of Chorotega culture and pottery, is lined with samples of the craft | Photo courtesy of Lydia Chow

Guaitil – pronounced, more or less, wy-teel – is the Costa Rica you’ve probably never heard of. And yet, you should have. Everyone should have. Because Guaitil is one of those special kinds of places that you cannot experience anywhere else.

This is your invitation to step back into a thousand years of tradition, to experience the Costa Rica of another millennia – before the conquistadors, before modernization, before Costa Rica even was Costa Rica. Guaitil is living, breathing history.

Guaitil is a Chorotega indigenous village, named for the dye-giving Guaitil tree and situated in Guanacaste and less than an hour from Tamarindo. It is a complete escape from the norm and exploration of tradition – a dusty, rugged town known best for its pottery. And, in our opinion, just as deservingly for its food. But we’ll get there in a moment.

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4 Costa Rican Wedding Traditions to Incorporate into Your Tamarindo Wedding

local traditions to incorporate into your Tamarindo wedding

To love, to luck, to your marriage! Here are four of our favorite Costa Rican wedding traditions to incorporate and adapt to your Tamarindo wedding ceremony and reception.

In this wonderfully modern era, every country has its traditions – some, that persevere and others, that time has long forgotten. These traditions are never more pronounced as when they comes to life’s big moments.

And here, in Costa Rica, there are many wedding traditions to which we cleave, for the joy they bring, the moments they represent, and the rich cultural tapestry to which they belong.

So, with that in mind, we’ve pulled together a few of our favorite Costa Rican wedding traditions. Which might you incorporate into your Tamarindo wedding ceremony and/or reception?

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Romantic Dinners in Tamarindo – 7 of our Favorite Spots

a private chef offers one of the most romantic dinners in Tamarindo

Looking for the most romantic dinners in Tamarindo? We say, look no further than you own private chef, who will prepare the meal of your culinary dreams. Enjoy it, just the two of you, in your private villa or vacation home. Perfect lighting. Perfect views. Perfect music. Perfect company.

From twinkling fairy lights to crashing surf, lantern-lit tables to bamboo palapas for two, the most romantic dinners in Tamarindo serve up more than just a delicious memory.

Because romance is not just the meal; it’s an experience. An experience of dim lighting and stolen moments, great views and memorable moments. It’s about setting the mood – about connecting with your loved one, and only your loved one – whether it’s for a simple date or a special occasion.

The most romantic dinners in Tamarindo are some of the most romantic in all of Costa Rica. Our restaurants are world-class, focusing on hyper-local ingredients and sustainable practices, while working to deliver on an intimate and, yes, romantic ambiance.

Here are seven of our favorites:

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New Year’s Day Around the World: 6 Costa Rican New Year’s Traditions

fire dancers on Tamarindo beach

One of our favorite Costa Rican New Year’s traditions? In Tamarindo on New Year’s Eve, fire dancers set the beachscape ablaze with fiery beauty!

Well, we made it – it’s 2019! Can you believe we’re nearly two decades into the millennium? (Is it me, or does Y2K seem like yesterday? No, just me? Okay.)

If you’re in Tamarindo, you’ve now seen how Costa Rica (and the beach) ring in the New Year: An entire town’s worth of events, most steeped in sand with a sprinkling of good drink, oceanfront fireworks, midnight countdowns, and plenty of live music, DJ stylings, and all the fun you could handle. Hope all that celebration doesn’t hurt too much today!

Now that we’ve safely rung in the New Year, you may be looking forward to starting 2019 with a few hope-filled traditions. So, this 2019, why not create a few new ones – well, new to you. Because these Costa Rican New Year’s traditions have been around for decades!

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Costa Rica Family Vacation: Your [Almost] Complete Guide to Tamarindo with Kids

surfing in Tamarindo with kids

Tamarindo is an excellent choice for your Costa Rica family vacation

You’re enjoying a wonderful holiday season – by the way, happy holidays from the Stay in Tamarindo family! – and you’re loving your time together with your loved ones, whether you’re gathered with just your nearest and dearest or gathered with extended family and friends. And now, you’re thinking (and even talking) about that Costa Rican family vacation you have all always wanted to take.

Congratulations! Costa Rica is an excellent choice for your family vacation, and Tamarindo is the best choice of all. (Yes, we admit we’re a little biased.) But, consider this: spectacular beaches and even more beautiful sunsets, dense mangroves and sick surf, thrilling adventures and tranquil slices of beach – the perfect recipe to create one of Costa Rica’s most popular destinations.

You’ve already heard a lot about Costa Rica. You’ve definitely dreamed of your someday visit. And now, you’re really starting to plan. Go ahead – you can do a little dance! A family vacation in Costa Rica is something to get excited about.

With visions of mangoes dancing in your head, your initial excitement and anticipation passed, inevitably your thoughts will begin to wander to some of the more practical matters: When should you plan your visit?What will the weather be like? Where should you visit and where will you stay? And then, importantly, how much should you budget?

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Tamarindo Overnight Trip: Explosive Arenal Volcano

Arenal Volcano in Costa Rica

Arenal Volcano is Costa Rica’s most famous volcano – and one of our favorite day trips (even better: overnight trips!) from Tamarindo.

On slopes where once flowed destructive red-hot lava, now grows an explosion of rainforest riches: soaring palms, dense foliage, and jewel-toned tropical blooms. And, lest you forget its origins, the occasional (yet tamer) belch from a mostly-sleeping-sometimes-rumbling active volcano.

Indeed, while a nightly lava show used to draw visitors to the region, today Arenal Volcano relies on much more than Mother Nature’s red-hot fireworks. This is a town dedicated to diversion, relaxation, and a full suite of adventure: soaring canopy ziplines, exhilarating waterfall rappelling, frothing white-water rafting, volcanic hot springs, shadowy cave spelunking, and so much more.

Oh, so very much more.

Because, this is Arenal Volcano. And this is one of our most popular overnight tours from Tamarindo. Trust us, it’s worth the drive.

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