Top 3 Best
Values in the World.


"Tours of a Lifetime." May 2012


Recommended by more guidebooks
than any other company for
planning your vacation in Costa Rica

Use the Wish List Below to Plan Your Dream Vacation

Simply Click Your Interests.
One of Our Travel Planners Will Personally
Custom Design Up to 3 Itineraries - Free!
Including All Places, Lodges, and Adventures.

Tip #1


> Read the boxes on the right to know how it all works.

> Click boxes to indicate your interests and preferences.
> Un-click if you change your mind.
> Every preference you click is saved immediately.
> Click any picture to see it enlarged.

Primary Trip

Lots of rest & leisure
Physical activity
Lots of privacy
Meet people, socialize
Travel with groups
Re-bond with your
child or mate
Bond with nature
Lots of learning
Take photographs
Celebration, Occasion

Please Keep in Mind
The best way to choose your
preferences is to think about
how you want to feel when
you get back home.
We'll plan your adventures
to be serene, dynamic, or a
mixture so check all
boxes that apply even if
they seem contradictory.
For maximum learning, we
may recommend a broad
itinerary and your guide
will point out things, explain
their significance, and
answer questions.
If you want to meet lots of
interesting people, we may
recommend a group, which
also saves money since
then guides and
transportation are shared.
Many people make new
friends in our groups.


Scroll down for many more Wish List categories

Tip #2


> Feel free to type your comments or questions below.
> Every preference you click is saved immediately.
> Click any picture to see it enlarged.


Your vacation
Pace & Intensity

Within each day
move quickly from
adventure to adventure
4 days or more
per location or...
Civilized: 2-3 days
per location or...
Intense: 1 day
per location
(Not usually

Please Keep in Mind
Most people want to visit too many places in too short a period.
Transportation is expensive in Costa Rica. The fewer places you visit the less expensive your vacation.
Whatever pace you choose, we'll make it trouble free.
If you have high energy or are very athletic, we can include lots of adventures but be sure to have us plan for some vacation rest too!
Or we can plan plenty of time for a hot tub under the stars, a spa, loafing by the pool, or gliding gently down a river.


Tip #3

> Every preference you click is saved immediately.
> Click any picture to see it enlarged.

Authentic Interactions
Local People

Very important to me
Somewhat important
Not important to me
Please Keep in Mind
Meet local people at work and at
play. They're known for their
grace, modesty, friendliness
and generosity.
Your guide will translate so you
really learn about each other.
Sometimes an invitation to go
deeper into their world with them
emerges from the connection.


Tip #4

> Feel free to type your comments or questions below.
    Its saved automatically. Then continue down your Wish List.

> Every preference you click is saved immediately.
> Click any picture to see it enlarged.

Romantic Celebration

Costa Rica Explorer Connoisseur Expeditions

Renew vows
Recent empty nesters
Birthday celebration
Other special occasion
Costa Rica Explorer Connoisseur Expeditions

Costa Rica Explorer Connoisseur Expeditions

Please Keep in Mind
An abundance of beauty, sensual sounds, smells, and private luxury.
There's something sensual
and romantic about the
tropics lush fertility and
diversity. It rekindles
The adventures you share
add to your lifelong memories.
Feel almost like your
relationship is part of nature's
The serenity and happiness of others at the lodges add
to your sense of being in a good world together.
We love to arrange surprises
if one of you asks us to.

Is This WishList Tool Really Your Best Way to Plan Your Vacation?
Here's what a past guest said on Trip Advisor:
"My experience started with completing of a questionnaire that helped our travel expert to propose a very detailed proposed itinerary where I was able to clearly visualize our upcoming experience...Sooo easy!"
DMC 511 Stockton, CA, September 2 2013

Go ahead and
send your tentative

We encourage you to go through the whole Wish List in a whirlwind way, making tentative choices, and sending it today.

That way, you'll get back information as soon as possible, at no cost.


After all, it's a dialogue between you and your Travel Planner. Just start by sending your tentative interests and preferences!


The Send button is at the very top and very bottom of this home page.


How to Work With
Your Planner

You've started a dialogue with your Travel Planner when you first send your tentative Wish List.

You'll communicate back and forth and temper the itineraries they suggest, until you say Great! Thats Ideal!

Only then do they ask your approval to book your itinerary so they can reserve for you the lodges and arrange everything else your plan requires.

Who are your
Travel Planners?

They know wonderful, safe adventures you might never imagine.


They live in and love Costa Rica, and have intimate knowledge of it.


They speak English and Spanish, and work for us full time.


They take care of you as they would a friend.


They stay in touch with you, and those who serve you, throughout your trip to insure you get our Legendary Service.


Since Vacation
time is precious

Having us do your planning removes many hours of wasted time and frustration before and during your trip.

After all, why should you have to study Costa Ricas 11 regions, over 85 itineraries, over 50 prime lodges, and over 100 possible activities?

We'll provide plans and make arrangements to insure you have a vacation of unforgettable memories.

Worth Every Penny!
"At first when booking this I thought it was a little bit expensive, but soon realized it was worth every penny! I wish we had booked our entire Costa Rica vacation with them.!"
katw291 San Carlos, California July 28, 2014
Why Using CRE Was So Great
"It was clear to me why using CRE was so great… Chatting at breakfast in a hotel with a woman and her parents who had rented a car to drive around the country. They were excited but clearly completely distracted by trying to figure out how to get from one place to the next, and also in need of a lot of advice for how to enjoy their day. !"
ardenp Boston, Massachusetts February 15, 2014
We Felt Safe and Secure
"We have no doubt in our minds that we wouldn’t have seen or experienced half of the things we did if it weren’t for the expert knowledge and planning from Gustavo and CRE. They keep in touch and inform you about all you need to know every step of the way and we felt safe and secure at all times.!"
Carmen E London, United Kingdom June 18, 2014

Tip #5

> If a category doesn't apply to you, leave all boxes unchecked.
> Every preference you click is saved immediately.
> Click any picture to see it enlarged.


We're considering bringing:
Primary grader(s)
Adult child
Would like:
Special activities for kids
Guides specializing in kids
Children's menus
Lots of pool & beach time
Visit a local school

Please Keep in Mind
Children are welcome, and find
delight, in our adventures, without
missing TV and the Internet. We
make sure it's all safe, and that
they're learning.
We know which things children
find most thrilling, and remember
most, and can tune your plans
accordingly if you want. We can
even arrange a special party.
Whether you're loafing and
giggling with them, or discovering
adventures together, its a great
time to strengthen bonds.
Some lodgings provide separate
guided activities for children, and
child care.Tell your Planner if
that's important to you.



Wildlife important to me:
Specifically want to see:
Hummingbirds, Parrots
Turtle Nesting

Please Keep in Mind
Costa Rica is one of the most bio-diverse places on earth.
The best naturalist guides in
the world are what make our
wildlife observations
Our guides know where there
have recently been sightings
of rare or endangered
You'll see wildlife in action,
and occasionally breeding.
See the most important
nesting place for Atlantic
Green Turtles in the Western
It's all done from a safe
distance, so as to not disturb
the nature we're privileged to


Forest Experiences

Rainforest boat tour
Rainforest hikes
Cloud forest magical mist
Hanging bridges
Zip line through trees
Jungle waterfalls
Forest wildlife
Unique forest plants

Please Keep in Mind
See dozens of species of wildlife.
Many of our naturalist guides do
bird calls that birds respond to,
and guides all point out things you
wouldn't notice, and take you
where the sightings are.
See the unique vegetation and
wildlife in the misty, breezy, cool,
cloud forest at 5000.
Imagine being where there are
some 1,200 species of wild orchids
Experience the rainforest from a
platform 120 feet above the forest
floor. Our travelers rhapsodize
about the experience.
Zip through the forest canopy,
easily and safely.


Experience active

Chance to see red lava, smoke, fire
See a volcanic crater lake
Lodging within view
Nighttime viewing
See from a distance
Visit up close

Please Keep in Mind
Costa Rica has several volcanoes
at various stages of activity.
Some lodges have views of the
volcano out your rooms window.
Tours take you as close as you
can get with safety.
Guides explain how they formed,change, and patterns of action.
Get in touch with the fact that at
the center of the earth is fire.
Seeing lava flowing is a staggering


Beginner & Advanced
River Rafting

Relaxing float down river
Beginner white water
Intermediate white water
Advanced white water

Please Keep in Mind
Choose very relaxed or white water
rivers (beginner to advanced) all
expertly led by extremely experienced
guides.This is some of best rafting in world.
Top safety standards and equipment.
Rest-stops scenes and sightings are
part of the adventure, along with
gourmet food.
Photo CD of your trip (Available).


In nature
Water Adventures

Swimming in streams
Bathing under waterfall
Dolphin or whale watching
Sea Kayaking
Exploration in boat with
    guide and others

Please Keep in Mind
Many areas have pristine beaches
and coves with few people. Bask
in the sun and breeze, and then
see extraordinary sunsets.
In our jungles and beaches,
familiar activities are transformed
into a connection with and exploration of nature.
In many activities, our guides
coach you, insure that you're safe,
and look for ways to maximize
your pleasure.
Some sports that used to be hard
have become far easier due to the
latest equipment.


Land Sports

Mountain biking
Horseback riding
Horseback riding on beach

Please Keep in Mind
In Costa Rica, these activities are
different, because you do them
surrounded by fascinating scenery
and wildlife.
As your itinerary emerges, we'll
recommend those activities where
a guide adds a lot.
We provide excellent quality
equipment you'll enjoy using.


Other Adventures



Hot springs
Music of Costa Rica
See San Jose (the capitol)
Pre-Columbian Gold
Local performances
Farmer's market
Art show

Please Keep in Mind
If you think of something wonderful
you'd like to experience beyond
what's on your Wish List, please be sure
to put it in comments, below.



Beautiful views from room
Balcony or patio
Garden suite
King size bed
Cross ventilated, & fans
Cool at night
Unique decor
Extravagant private bath
Private shower in room
Group hot tub under stars
Private hot tub with jets
Very quiet
Privacy areas
Bar. Other socializing areas
Swimming pool
Family oriented
Couples oriented

Please Keep in Mind
You might not expect such luxury
in the middle of the jungle.
Check what matters most to you,
and we'll find as much of it as we
can among the over 50
properties we consider excellent.
Our recommendations are based
on 25 years of arranging
vacations for the most
sophisticated and demanding
travelers in Costa Rica.
The pictures show lodges we
own, which has the advantage for
you that we integrate all your
adventures with what's happening
at and around the lodge.
Some lodges have evening slide
Please don't forget you can add
comments or questions, below.


Gourmet & Native

Elegant indoor restaurant
Beautiful patio restaurant
Elegant outdoor dining
Picnic lunch (with surprises)
Gourmet chef
Unique native foods
Formal gracious service
Candlelight dinner
Informal, friendly service
Accommodate your diet
Please Keep in Mind
Just because you're in nature
doesn't mean you have to sacrifice
great food.
At our lodges, cuisine supervised
by executive chef, Valentin Corral,
trained in Michelin Starred
Our trips are good for experiencing
delicious native food adventures.
You can put special diet
requirements in Comments, below


Solutions on

Have your eyes opened to
problems & trends
See specific solutions
What goverment is doing
What tour operators do
Solutions for threatened
How the Costa Rica
situation relates to the
world & climate change.

Please Keep in Mind
Your guide explains how wildlife
and plants have adapted to their
Learn ecological changes and
solutions. Education and
awareness initiatives in eco-travel.
Discover what's being done to
sustain and improve the well-being
of local communities.
How tourists and tourism can
contribute, including giving well-
paid and fulfilling employment to
people who would have merely
been subsisting.


World class

Include guides
No guides
A mixture

Please Keep in Mind
Largest staff of prominent biologists,
naturalist & ornithologists.
Spend the most time in the field, so
they know where and when to take
advantage of sightings.
We train other companies guides.
We´re good, real good. The results
can be magical.
We feel so strongly that a guide is the
single most important element of a life
enhancing trip that we'll give you your
money back if you do not agree.


Widest choice of

Customized Itinerary
Your choice of departure
and return dates, a
more exact match to
your interests, and not
a group - just you and
your companions.
Group Itineraries.
Join the Quest for Pura Vida Group Departure, featuring the Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve, the Arenal Volanco and Tortuguero National Park. This program has at least one monthly departure, is fully guided and includes all meals.
Non Customized Set Itinerary. Your choice of departure and return dates. You may be sharing with other guests. Much more affordable than customized itineraries, but the itinerary is set; it cannot be changed. Uses some of the same lodges used in more customized itineraries.
Please Keep in Mind
Customized Itineraries are more flexible and more expensive than group itineraries
Group itineraries are scheduled for specific dates. You get the pleasure of being with a group, and lower cost since guide and transportation costs are shared.
Maximum group size 12-18 depending on the program. Average group size 6.
Non-Customized Set Itineraries are for people who need the flexibility being able to choose their arrival date, but do not want to spend the money for a fully customized itinerary. In some cases only you and your companions will travel together. In other cases additional guests will be added to tours, vans boats and planes.

Itinerary Options

Respecting your time

Small plane allowing more
time at destinations.
How small?...
7 passenger minimum
4 passenger minimum
Use our expert van drivers
who know the roads
Drive your own rental car
No small planes

Please Keep in Mind
Vacation time is precious, and we
try to maximize your time at
destinations, not in transport.
All of our group departures
use planes

Our small charter planes take
hours less. With some (where
every seat is a window seat) you
get unique views. Great safety
record. You avoid some pretty
bad roads.

In a country where the lifestyle is
pretty tranquilo, our clients are
amazed at how on-time we are.


Travel Planners

Here are 3 of our
8 Travel Planners

Nadya Shaw

Gustavo Méndez

Luis Cubero

Each Planner has several
specialties! You can click
which specialties you'd like
your planner to have.

(OK to click several)
Upscale vacation
Family vacations
Helping guest arriving
    soon, in next 2 weeks
Natural history
Photographing nature
Active vacations
for example: surfing,
diving, multi-sports,
white water rafting.
Special interest groups
and affinity groups.
Honeymoon, anniversary
Celebrations, occasions
No specialization needed
Please Keep in Mind
We'll assign whoever of our 8
planners whose specialties most
fit what you check on the left,
and throughout your Wish List.
Don't hesitate to add a comment
They all live in and love Costa
Rica, and have intimate
knowledge of it.
They all speak English and
Spanish, and work for us full
They'll take care of you as they
would a friend, finding creative
They'll stay in touch with you,
and those who serve you,
throughout your trip to insure Legendary Service.


Also Complete Vital Wish List Info Below, then
Click Here to

All fields required except phone number, but we recommend you include it to facilitate
questions and dialogue.

Your name

Your email

Re-Type your email

Your daytime phone

Number of adults

Number of children



Arrival Date mm-dd-yy

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Departure Date mm-dd-yy

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  Have you already purchased your tickets to Costa Rica?

How you heard about us?
Please check here if we may call to get your feedback about your experience filling out the Wish List.
Which airport?

Costa Rica Expeditions.  Barrio Escalante Avenida 3 entre calle 25 y 29, San Jose, Costa Rica.  Tel: +506 2521 6099.  Email: Resources
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