How to find Hotels and Family Friendly Destinations in Costa Rica
Blog - January 28, 2021

Arenal Paraiso ResortThis trip was made possible through Il Viaggio Travel and Family Travel Association. However, all opinions are my own.

I recently visited Costa Rica and experienced a lot of what the country has to offer using a family focused tour operator. In the past, I may have thought about using my amazing travel expertise and knowledge on where to stay, however, Costa Rica is a country I knew nothing about and bringing my family there without knowing what places would be accessible to us was a little scary.  A “family focused tour operator,” specializes in family, so they know what they are talking about.

Will you need a stroller? Where do you find formula? Do your children have allergies? Do they have any disabilities? When do they wake up and go to bed?  Are they potty trained? These are all questions we don’t often get asked when we travel.

Wouldn’t it be nice to know that someone has prepared all of that for you in advance?  Costa Rica Family Holidays can do that and so much more so that your family holiday can be more relaxed and enjoyable.  Owners Emilio and Stephanie Sheely are a 100% Costa Rican family who love their country (it really shows too) and specialize in the creation of crafted family holidays. They have visited the locations ahead of time and hand-picked their suppliers.

Also, if you want to find a list of accessible, family friendly places, you can visit The Costa Rican Accessible Tourism Network.

Let’s be real.  Family holidays can be stressful.  Without getting into details, we have had a few and thought we were as prepared as ever, for instance on one of our epic Disney trips.  Never again. No thank you.  Nope.

Costa Rica

I visited many family friendly and accessible destinations in Costa Rica.

Coffee Tour

Espiritu Santo Coffee Tour en Naranjo

I picked coffee beans and learned about the coffee process from plantation to brewing.  I left with a few bags of coffee and chocolate covered coffee beans. Jose was awesome at giving us a tour.

You can read more about my experience here.

Mistico Arenal Hanging Bridges

Mistico Arenal Hanging Bridge Park

Here you can cross 15 bridges, 6 of them hanging bridges. When you get to the end, you can see the breathtaking view of the Arenal Volcano.  Put your walking shoes on and get your camera ready for some beautiful images;  some of the lush tropical gardens and trails and some of the wildlife.

You can read more about my experience here.


Ecoglide Arenal Park

This is where I faced my fear of heights and wouldn’t have done it any other way. The team at Ecoglide Arenal Park were the best at helping me feel comfortable.

You can read more about my experience here.


Sarchi Artisan Village in Sarchí, Alajuela

I visited the Sarchi Artisan Village in Sarchí, Alajuela, best known for the vibrant, bright-colored oxcarts that are handcrafted and sold all over the country.

You can read more about my experience here.

Costa Rica

 Corso Lecheria Tour

I have a slight cow obsession after doing the Corso Lecheria Tour. These cutie pies had me at “moo.” I also really enjoyed the strawberry ice-cream and cheese.

You can read more about my experience here

Corso Lecheria Tour

These are all accessible and family friendly destinations.  Of course, when you’re looking for a place to stay with your family you have to consider these things.

I stayed at two hotels that offered a variety of kid friendly activities, however, I probably would not have known about them had it not been for Stephanie from Costa Rica Family Holidays.  Since they have visited these places themselves and scouted out perfect family friendly destinations in Costa Rica, I trust them to make these choices for us.

Villas Del Rio

Villas del Rio

I stayed at Villas del Rio located in San Rafael, Escazú. Villas del Rio is minutes away from schools, shopping centers, local businesses, parks and clinics and has all the amenities you would expect and more.  It’s the perfect place to stay solo, or with the family. They offer both suites and apartments – all accessible.

Costa Rica

This is what I walked out to from my room.  How pretty is that?

The hotel has two pools, a relaxing jacuzzi, and even a playground for children.

All of the rooms are air-conditioned and include an iron, ironing board, hair dryer, organic bath products, safe, telephone, work desk, seating area, high definition tv and complimentary wifi. All the conveniences you need for a comfortable stay.

Breakfast is included. The on-site restaurant and cafe, Sarapiquí, is influenced by local ingredients and offers you a wonderful breakfast everyday with fresh fruit, various breads and of course their traditional cuisine which incorporates rice and beans.

fun facts: 1)  Villas del Rio has a water and energy saving programs. 2) They are pet friendly, and have a special spot in the garden for pets. The hotel even offers a walking service if you need it.

They can arrange a shuttle for you to pick you up from the airport, just call 48 hours ahead.

Arenal Paraiso Resort

Arenal Paraiso Resort

Arenal Pariaso Resort is a resort spa and with thermo mineral hot springs.         It is located 4 miles (6 km) from the town of La Fortuna in an area that offers spectacular views of the Arenal Volcano. The accommodations are surrounded by lush tropical gardens and walking paths, and guests will enjoy using the hotel’s swimming pools and hot springs.  It also offers family friendly activities like Canopy and Horseback Riding.

Arenal Paraiso Resort

They offer different rooms and villas to choose from. We stayed in the Superior Room which has one bedroom with 2 queen beds.

It also has a porch with 2 chairs and beautiful views of the surrounding tropical gardens.  It’s also very close to the hot springs.

Thermal Hot Springs

There are thermal mineral waters for everyone, which vary in temperature.   They are 100% natural and spring from a natural underground river from the Arenal Volcano and carry minerals which benefit the skin in different ways.  The 7 river pools have waterfalls and the relaxing hydromassage which also provide amazing views of the Arenal Volcano.

The waters’ color is due to the fact that it is completely natural and the presence of minerals like:  PH – Alkalinity – Calcium – Magnesium – Chloride – Sulfate – Silicon – Iron – Sodium – Potassium – Mangnesium – Phosphate

The hot springs are a great place to escape and relax.

Arenal Paraiso Resort

One of my favorite activities while staying at Arenal Paraiso Resort was planting a tree to offset the CO2 used while we were there.

This activity blew me away.  I love how Costa Rica has so much respect for its country by being so eco conscious.

Hotels in Costa Rica

Costa Rica is an amazing place to visit with the family.  I just recommend that you get a family focused tour operator so you don’t run into any surprises.

For more info on booking a family vacation contact Costa Rica Family Holidays.

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  1. I have heard so many wonderful things about Cost Rica. I would love to have a vacation there. Thank you for all this great information. God Bless

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