Costa Rica Big Winner in Trip Advisor's Traveler's Choice Destination Awards 2010.
The people have spoken and Costa Rica is still one of the best places for getting away from it all, according to Trip Advisor, a popular website based on real travelers and their experiences throughout the world. The spectacular diversity of Costa Rica and the people's desire to maintain its natural wonders have consistantly made Costa Rica one of the best places to visit. Its proximity to the United States (only a 2 hour flight from Miami), its stable government and its growing infrastructure of services add to its appeal. Prices in the area are still below comparable places in other destinations, making Costa Rica a good choice for the budget conscious.
The surprising winner in Costa Rica was the city of Santa Cruz, also known as the Folklore City, which is the county seat for the Guanacaste region and also the name of the canton which encompasses many of the popular beaches in the Pacific northwest of Costa Rica. In fact, while the city itself was named by Trip Advisor, the activities and hotels listed are spread throughout the region, which means the canton of Santa Cruz is really the big winner. This district includes some of the most popular beaches in all of Costa Rica, including Flamingo, Potrero, Conchal, Grande and Tamarindo.
Santa Teresa, a beach town in the middle of Costa Rica's long Pacific coast, took the top spot as the best Beach & Sun destination in Central & South America and placed in the Top 10 for Relaxation & Spa. Puerto Viejo, on the Caribbean side also made the Top 10 for Best Beach & Sun and snagged a place in the Top 10 Outdoor & Adventure category, too.
Samara on the Pacific coast and another hotspot for surfers, also placed in the Beach & Sun category. Tamarindo was chosen as a Top 25 in Central & South America for its diversity of activities, shops and restaurants and its famous surfing beach. Conchal, home to the outstanding Reserva Conchal Golf Resort, was named in the Top 10 for Relaxation & Spa in Central & South America.
Manuel Antonio Park, a perennial favorite, was also in the Top 25 for Central and South America and placed in the Top 10 in the Beach & Sun and Relaxation & Spa categories. Arenal National Park, the country's most famous active volcano, grabbed a Top 10 place for Outdoor & Adventure as well as the #1 spot in Relaxation & Spa for its many natural hotsprings.