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How Is DIY Costa Rica Different From The Costa Rica Travel Blog?

How Is DIY Costa Rica Different From The Costa Rica Travel Blog?

Last updated on June 20th, 2019 at 09:37 am EST


When we launched DIY Costa Rica (our Costa Rica portfolio project), we knew there would be a flood of emails and comments to come in regarding differences between it and our Costa Rica Travel Blog.

“Why bother to create two separate projects?”

“Is the information provided on each repetitive?”

“Why register for DIY Costa Rica access ($4.99 USD for 365 days of unlimited access) when I can explore the Costa Rica Travel Blog for free?”

This post aims to darken the very distinct line we draw between the two. For details regarding DIY Costa Rica’s free promotion [expired], please see our related blog post: NOW FREE! The Best Costa Rica Travel Guide We Could Imagine.


Our travel blog (the Costa Rica Travel Blog) offers a bit of everything; from documented travel journeys to lessons learned to tidbits of advice, each blog post was written with the purpose of helping travellers inform their own trip-planning decisions. On it, readers can explore important topics, such as whether Costa Rica is safe, which destinations are worth a visit, which trip planning red flags to avoid, how to best build a vacation itinerary, and what to expect when it comes time to pay Costa Rican companies for travel experiences. We also touch on practical and sometimes trivial points, such as what to pack, what to buy as souvenirs, how much to tip, which activities we like to participate in, which hotels we like to stay at, and what there is to eat and drink in Costa Rica, as well as more emotional concepts that target facets of Costa Rican culture and/or describe our philanthropic efforts.

Our Costa Rica Travel Blog is also an impartial and primarily objective resource. Although it is a medium through which we document our own travel experiences and express our personal opinions, we have never tried to push our recommendations on anyone. When we make suggestions, we support opposing viewpoints. When we say we like something, we know many other travellers won’t agree. And, when we write about something being “the best”, we do not disclose an exact preference. Instead, we offer a disclaimer that explains that choosing “the best” of anything is an impossible challenge since each traveller varies from the next in terms of their interests, budget, needs, and abilities. What follows the disclaimer is a presentation of a variety of options that travellers can browse through en route to discovering what they would classify as “the best” for themselves.

DIY Costa Rica, on the other hand, is biased and subjective in both its construction and its purpose.

“The Costa Rica Travel Blog is also an impartial and primarily objective resource. DIY Costa Rica, on the other hand, is biased and subjective in both its construction and its purpose.”
~ Nikki & Ricky,
Costa Rica Travel Blog


For many years, travellers have been asking us to confirm our favourites. Whenever we would provide a variety of options in a blog post on our Costa Rica Travel Blog, we would be inundated with emails asking us, “If you had to, which one would you pick?“, and it became obvious that we needed to create a space where we could passionately and with prejudice present our picks for “the best”… everything! So, that is exactly what we did; we created a “best of” content portfolio project that discloses our precise Costa Rica recommendations. The project allows “do it yourself” vacation planners to quickly and easily identify which experiences they should incorporate into their trip; we call the project DIY Costa Rica.

Let’s look at an example to better define the difference between our two websites. On our Costa Rica Travel Blog we wrote a blog post titled Best Ziplines In Costa Rica: Comparing 6 In Arenal And Monteverde. In it, we compare and contrast six different canopy ziplining tours run in the La Fortuna / Arenal and Monteverde regions of the country, and we leave travellers to determine for themselves which one is the best. On DIY Costa Rica, we not only disclose which canopy ziplining tour is our absolute favourite in the entire country, but we also explain which exact zipline cable is our favourite too (surprisingly, our favourite zipline cable is not part of our favourite canopy ziplining tour–the two are completely separate experiences offered in different towns, which is why we write about each separately on DIY Costa Rica). Although travellers who read our Costa Rica Travel Blog can educate themselves on a number of great canopy ziplining tour experiences, travellers with access to DIY Costa Rica can pinpoint which exact experience we would pick if we were to design our own once-in-a-lifetime trip, as well as learn why we recommend the experiences we select and what warrants each selection over a competitor’s offering. As a website feature available to DIY Costa Rica members only, the “Best Zipline Tour” or “Best Zipline Cable” recommendation can be added to a member’s unique “Costa Rica Trip List” for quick reference at a later date, such as when it comes time to build a Costa Rica vacation itinerary. Or, if opting to use our personalized “DIY Costa Rica Map” (which documents all of the travel experiences we write about on our portfolio project), members may search our recommendations by location to see which selections pertain to the particular destination(s) they plan to visit.

Including our “Best Zipline Tour” and “Best Zipline Cable” recommendations noted in the example above, DIY Costa Rica provides 101 (and counting!) unique experience recommendations, each written as a chapter in a book, complete with photo galleries, Costa Rica field notes, experience details, Spanish pronunciation help, additional resources, and maps. Itemized by category, the following is a breakdown of the recommendations documented on DIY Costa Rica. Register today to start browsing!


Tours, tour operators, and activities

Best Adventure Tour
Best Zipline Tour
Best Zipline Cable
Best Aerial Tram Ride
Best Hanging Bridge
Best Night Tour
Best Coastal Tour
Best Safari Float
Best Intermediate Hike
Best Extreme Hike
Best Accessible Tour
Best Cultural Tour
Best Nature Tour Operator
Best Adventure Tour Operator


Best View Of The Sunrise
Best View Of The Sunset
Best View Of The Central Valley
Best View Of The Arenal Volcano
Best View Of The Continental Divide
Best View Of The Guanacaste Plains
Best View Of Volcano Lava Rocks
Best View Overlooking The Town Of La Fortuna
Best View Overlooking Arenal Lake
Best View Overlooking The Caribbean Coast
Best View Overlooking The Pacific Coast

Wildlife and wildlife spotting

Best Place To See Capuchin Monkeys
Best Place To Hear Howler Monkeys
Best Place To See Toucans
Best Place To See Scarlet Macaws
Best Place To See Crocodiles
Best Place To See Caimans
Best Place To See Coatis
Best Place To Feed Pigeons
Coolest Animal To See Up Close

Sites and attractions

Best Volcano To Visit
Best Hot Springs
Best River For White Water Rafting
Best Museum
Best Theatre
Best Art Gallery
Most Breathtaking Architecture
Best Historical Site
Best Ancient Ruins
Best Butterfly Garden
Best Hummingbird Garden
Most Convenient Waterfall To Visit


Best Airport
Best Place For White Sand
Best Place For Black Sand
Best Surf Town
Best Shallow Beach
Best Place To Scuba Dive
Best Swimming Lagoon

Restaurants, food, and drink

Most Common Dining Expression
Best Soda Restaurant (Caribbean)
Best Soda Restaurant (Inland)
Best Novelty Restaurant
Best Late Night Restaurant
Best Breakfast Menu Item (Traditional)
Best Breakfast Menu Item (Non-Traditional)
Must-Try Fruit (Cooked)
Must-Try Fruit (Raw)
Best French Fry Doppelganger
Best Coffee
Best Fruit Smoothie
Weirdest Drink To Order
Best Street Vendor Purchase
Best Post-Meal Treat


Best Vacation Rental Property
Best Beach Hostel
Best Luxury Hotel Bathroom
Most Underrated Hotel Amenities


Best Shortcut
Most Stressful Encounter During A Road Trip
Most Erroneous Costa Rica Travel Myth


Best Souvenir Purchase
Best Woodshop

Culture and Tradition

Best Way To Get Into The Costa Rican Spirit
Best Slogan To Recite
Best Holiday Celebration
Best Navidad (Christmas) Tradition
Best Semana Santa (Easter Week) Tradition
Most Addictive Local Pastime

Fun and Funny

Best Donation Item To Bring From Home
Best Use Of An Extra Two Dollars In Your Pocket
Best Opportunity To Take A Selfie
Best Item To Rent For A Day
Best Romantic Gesture
Best Mascot
Best Site For A Titanic “I’m The King Of The World” Moment
Best In-Pool Hot Springs Feature
Best Poolside Cabanas
Best Yoga Pose
Most Likely Fruit To Give You Montezuma’s Revenge

Random and Strange

Most Stunning Product Of A Chemical Reaction
Coolest Tree
Most Dangerous Roadway Bridge Crossing
Best Way To Avoid A Parking Ticket
Most Likely Beach Companion
Best Equipment (Other Than A Camera) To Pack
Most Important Reason For Keeping Colones On Hand

For more information, please visit DIY Costa Rica.

Pura vida!

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