Thinking About Hiking to the Peak of the Arenal Volcano? Think Again

Posted by shieldwatch on Apr 19, 2017 3:14:58 AM

The Costa Rica Star recently warned its readers that some tour operators based in La Fortuna in San Carlos are offering guided tours to the peak of the volcano. Be forewarned that they aren’t authorized by local tourism authorities. The National System of Conservation Areas, or SINAC, has been warning residents and tourists alike that tours to the peak are off limits because they are dangerous. SINAC sites that there are no trails, steep slopes, and the area is prone to falling rocks and landslides. Plus, the temperature rises dramatically and uncomfortably near the peak, putting hikers at further risk.

A better option is a trip to see the volcano through approved access points through the Coladas and Peninsula sectors. You can find quality, guided tours at the Arenal Volcano National Park, where you’ll find both volcano hikes and hot springs visits.

But perhaps the best way to experience the beauty of the volcano is from your very own veranda at Arenal Hills. The community is designed so that nearly every home has a commanding view of the volcano.

For more information, visit: www.arenalhills.com.

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Topics: Arenal Area Attractions, arenal hills, Arenal Volcano, Arenal Volcano National Park

Costa Rica is a Hummingbird’s Idea of Paradise

Posted by shieldwatch on Apr 12, 2017 10:16:08 AM

Birdwatchers and novice wildlife watchers alike tend to catch their breath at the site of the bejeweled fliers who can hover indefinitely and fly backwards—making them unique among all other birds of the world. In Costa Rica, they range from very small to surprisingly large, with tail streamers, bright colorations and fancy head plumes.

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Topics: Arenal Area Attractions, arenal hills, costa rica, humminghbirds

U.S.-Based Real Estate Developer Puts The Environment First In Developing Arenal Hills In San Ramón

Posted by shieldwatch on Apr 5, 2017 10:12:21 AM

When it comes to developing the land, Costa Rica is a country deeply committed to preserving its natural resources – particularly its wildlife and its resources. This was a commitment embraced by Gerald Baum, president of Florida-based Costa Rica Land Capital Partners, LLC, and developer of Arenal Hills, located in Tres Esquinas, San Ramón.

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Topics: arenal hills spring resorts, Arenal Hills Vacation Villas, club vida, Costa Rica In The News

TIPS TO TRAVEL SOLO IN COSTA RICA

Posted by shieldwatch on Mar 30, 2017 6:00:38 AM

Traveling solo is one of the best ways to discover yourself and see the world at your own pace. If adventure is on your mind, then Costa Rica is the perfect destination for you. The ‘happiest country in the world’ has been an American tourist hotspot for decades. Surf the Pacific Coast or go white water rafting on the Pacuare River, take a day trip in the cloud forest or spend time in the beauty of the Arenal Volcano – the choices are endless. Traveling solo, however, comes with its own set of challenges. The good news is you can easily dodge these by keeping the following tips in mind:

Take American Currency on Your Trip

Most Americans who travel to Costa Rica commit a rookie mistake – they exchange all their money for Costa Rican colones. This is a bad idea for several reasons. First, the exchange rate is horrible. Next, due to the influx of American tourists, lots of restaurants and shops in Costa Rica, especially the ones in the tourist areas, accept US currency. However, if you plan on taking the public transportation, you might need the Costa Rican coins.There’s an easy way to get them rather than visiting the currency exchange store. Pay for something in dollars you buy and receive the change in colones. You’ll have a small stack of coins in no time. See, it’s that simple!

Carry Mosquito Repellent

A vacation in Costa Rica means exploring a mélange of terrain and landscapes. You would definitely want to carry your mosquito repellent spray, especially if a cloud forest trip is on your list. Moreover, it’s a good idea to wear long-sleeved clothes and bottoms when you’re hiking.

Drink Plenty of Water

The climate of Costa Rica is different from the US, and you will have to drink sufficient amount of water to avoid heat exhaustion. It is easy to forget about drinking water when you’re preoccupied with sightseeing activities. Set the alarm on your phone to be on the safe side. On hot days, make sure you limit your exposure to the sun, wear sunscreen, and dress appropriately.

Traveling solo in Costa Rica can be so much fun. In case you want to make the country your second home, call us at Arenal Hills on 1-844-My-Hills.

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Topics: Costa Rica In The News, traveling to Costa Rica

TYPES OF RESIDENCY IN COSTA RICA

Posted by shieldwatch on Mar 27, 2017 3:00:10 AM

If you visit Costa Rica often, chances are you have fallen in love with the land. What’s the next step? Well, you could try applying for residency. This is a major step, and it indicates your commitment to staying in the country for a long time. Before you hire a lawyer to look after the residency process on your behalf, you need to have a clear idea about the types of residency available. This blog will discuss the most important residency types that people consider in Costa Rica.

Pensionado

This type of residency is applicable only when you are the recipient of a certain amount of retirement money or pension every month.

Inversionista

You can opt for this type of Costa Rican residency when you have invested a specific amount of money in the country. This could be either through the opening of a business, purchasing a piece of real estate, or any other form of a sizeable investment.

Rentista

Rentista is a residency category that you are applicable for only when you have put in a specific amount of money in a bank in Costa Rica for renting and living long-term.

Permanent Residency vs. Temporary Residency

The above mentioned three residency types, when granted, necessitate that you be a temporary resident of Costa Rica for a period of three years. Only then will you be allowed to file for permanent residency.

Compared to temporary residency, permanent residency has several other benefits to offer. For starters, permanent residency provides you with all the rights of a citizen, minus the voting rights. You are also allowed to legally work as an employee in Costa Rica. On the other hand, temporary residents are capable of running or owning a business in the country, but they need to hire employees for labor. It is important for both permanent and temporary residents to pay into the country’s healthcare system, known as the Caja.

Alternative Method for Permanent Residency

It is possible to achieve the permanent resident status without first having temporary residency. This is known as Residencia Permanente PorVinculo. It requires you to have a first-degree blood relative like a child, a sibling, or a parent, who is Costa Rican.

Becoming a permanent Costa Rican resident is a wonderful idea. Do you know what the next best thing is? Making Costa Rica your second home. Consider living in one of our luxury villas to experience five-star comfort during your stay. Contact Arenal Hills today by calling 1-844-MY-HILLS and we will love to have you as our neighbor.

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Topics: Costa Rica In The News

OFF TO COSTA RICA? HERE ARE THE THINGS YOU NEED TO PACK FOR YOUR VACATION

Posted by shieldwatch on Mar 20, 2017 6:20:25 AM

Does paradise on Earth exist? It surely does! And if you happen to be a see-it-to-believe-it type of person, you have to visit Costa Rica at least once in your lifetime. Chase the volcanic trails, go zip lining in the dense forest, or just relax on the beach sipping on an exotic cocktail. Ah, that’s life!  There is ABSOLUTELY nothing that you won’t love about the land of Pura Vida, but you will have to come prepared. Here is a list of the items you must pack to make the most of your tryst with this breathtaking destination:

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Topics: Life In costa Rica, planning a costa rican vacation, Visit in Costa Rica

VISITING COSTA RICA? IMMIGRATION INFORMATION THAT YOU WILL FIND HELPFUL

Posted by shieldwatch on Mar 14, 2017 3:01:03 AM

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Topics: Costa Rica In The News, traveling to Costa Rica, Visit in Costa Rica

3 FUN THINGS YOU CAN DO ON BUDGET IN COSTA RICA

Posted by shieldwatch on Feb 13, 2017 2:02:19 AM

“What’s exotic must be exorbitant” – that’s what many people think about paradises like Costa Rica. However, you must validate the truth of the statement before jumping on that bandwagon. In fact, you can experience Costa Rica’s verdant rainforests, rich animal life, stunning beaches, breathtaking waterfalls, museum tours, self-guided hiking, and local events without breaking your bank. Here are three things you can in Costa Rica on a backpacker’s budget:

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Topics: Costa Rica In The News, Life In costa Rica

3 RECREATIONAL ACTIVITIES FOR VACATIONERS IN ARENAL, COSTA RICA

Posted by shieldwatch on Feb 10, 2017 2:20:45 AM

For vacationers in search of thrill and excitement, the Arenal region in Costa Rica offers recreational activities like zip lining, bungee jumping, rafting, and more. With varied topography from verdant rainforests, spectacular volcanoes, natural caves, and gushing waterfalls, this central American country has a wide variety of exciting activities. Here are three of the most thrilling activities for you in Arenal, Costa Rica:

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Topics: Arenal Area Attractions

LOVE BIRDWATCHING? COSTA RICA IS THE DESTINATION FOR YOU

Posted by shieldwatch on Jan 30, 2017 2:10:54 AM

Here at Arenal Hills, we are fortunate to be at the epicenter of one of the most bird-rich ecosystems on earth. Costa Rica is home to 600 species year round and more than 200 that migrate from temperate zones.  That’s an amazing variety when compared to the 700 species that can be found in all of North America. Here is a list of the best birdwatching attractions to inspire you:

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Topics: Ecotourism in Costa Rica