Saturday, September 29, 2007

Butterflies and orchids tour

(ICT) - With the purpose of promoting tourism in the province of Alajuela and offering a new and different product to tourists, the Butterfly Farm located in the Guacima de Alajuela and the Botanical Garden of Orchids in La Garita, joined their efforts to offer a new combined tour: Butterflies and Orchids.

The journey begins early from any hotel in San Jose directly to the Butterfly Farm where the visitors walk among thousands of butterflies flapping their wings all around.

The tour continues to the Botanical Garden of Orchids, located 10 minutes from the Butterfly Farm. This place offers the opportunity to walk through exotic gardens and observe the beauty of a great variety of orchids. Tourists can also learn about the cultivation and natural history of these flowers. The tour ends with a lunch at Cafe Vanilla located inside the gardens.

After lunch, the buses leave towards the different hotels in San Jose. The tour is for all ages. For more information please call (506) 438-0400.

(Photo: Butterfly in Costa Rica. Shot taken by Dave Cross)

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Get to Costa Rica for less than $400

By Clara Bosonetto Maerz
For the Journal-Constitution

When you stop to think about it, if you capitalize on some of the hot airfares that pop up during the week, you can visit many parts of the world at a fraction of the regular cost.

Take today's extraordinary value on American Airlines of just $370.42 to San Jose, Costa Rica — and that's inclusive of all taxes, fees and fuel surcharges (piled on top of a base rate of $166).

To land this deal you must travel in each direction on Fridays-Sundays. Oddly, mid-week travel days of Mondays-Thursdays are priced higher at $470.42, inclusive. A rate of $420.42 is available on a combination of peak and off-peak days.

This sale rate requires at least a one-week advance purchase notice and stays of any two nights. Trips must be finished within 120 days of departure, or by Feb. 12, whichever date comes sooner.

Naturally there are blackout dates to avoid. Trips to Costa Rica are not permitted Dec. 15-26 and returns from Atlanta are not permitted Jan. 1-8.

With a one-week or more advance purchase notice, travel round-trip to San Jose with Delta Air Lines at inclusive rates of $470.42.

This rate is valid on trips taken seven days a week. Plan to stay at least any two nights. The maximum stay is 60 days. Plan to depart through Feb. 12. Trips are not permitted at this rate from Dec. 7-Jan. 15.

Buy tickets on American or Delta through midnight, tonight (9/25).

Friday, September 21, 2007

Hampton Inn will increase its capacity

(ICT) - The Hampton Inn & Suites, located in front of the Juan Santamaria International Airport in the province of Alajuela, inside the Airport Boulevard complex, which currently has 100 rooms, is waiting to receive the necessary permits enabling it to initiate the construction of 80 new rooms.

This enlargement, which is estimated to be concluded by the end of July 2008, represents an investment of 5.5 million dollars and will generate approximately 20 new jobs.

“We are waiting for the permits in order to start constructing immediately,” stated Luis Montero, Director of Operations from Grupo Marta, who added that this Project is a top priority, because the hotel needs to increase its capacity to be able to satisfy the demand of its clients.

Part of this plan also includes other upgrades to the hotel, such as extending the cafeteria, renovating the gymnasium with better equipment, as well as beautifying the gardens with native trees from Costa Rica.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Picture of the day

Sunset in Guanacaste, Costa Rica. Taken in August 2006 by Blue Oak Photos.

Sunday, September 02, 2007

Tourists arrival to Costa Rica increases 6.4 percent

(ICT) - The arrival of tourists to Costa Rica increased by 6.4 percent during the first six months of this year compared to 2006, according to statistics provided by the National Chamber of Tourism (Canatur).

The statistic is based on the number of visitors who arrived to the country through the main airports: The Juan Santamaria International Airport, located in the province of Alajuela and the Daniel Oduber International Airport, located in Liberia, in the province of Guanacaste, approximately 170 kilometers from San José in the northwestern part of the country, nearby the main beaches of the Pacific Coast.

From January to June a total of 832,604 foreigners visited the country, versus 782,346 tourists who entered Costa Rica in the same period for 2006, for a total growth of 50,258 tourists, of which 595,405 arrived at the Juan Santamaria International Airport, stated the President of Canatur, Gonzalo Vargas, during a press conference.

The President also added that the Juan Santamaria Airport increased by 3.14% while the Daniel Oduber Airport grew almost 16%. Even though statistics are not official yet, they help in providing an idea of the trends that this sector is experiencing.

“The statistics fill us with optimism. In fact, the closing date for the first semester of this year exceeds the expectations of the national plan which estimated a growth of approximately 5% for this year,” stated Vargas, as he pointed out the arrival of new airlines coming to the country as one of the reasons for the growth.