Our second trip with Gate1. First being a 10 day Ecuador trip in 2014.
This trip was as amazing and well put together as the first. Edgardo was our guide. He exceeded our already high expectations. His English was fluent and his knowledge of local floral and fauna was extensive.
He was exceptionally personable and attentive to all of the groups special needs. One of the members in our group broke her ankle in a mishap stepping off a curb a few days before the end of the trip. Edgardo went above and beyond in coordinating a medical transport to San Jose for a specialist review the xrays. He ensured all accommodations were arranged for handicapped access and facilities.
Our bus driver was excellent. The roads in Costa Rica while smooth are twisty and narrow to put it lightly. Especially in the Lake Arenal and Monte Verde areas. There were times when the turns were so sharp the bus had to execute multiple k-turns just to line up the curve.
Not to mention more than 2 one lane bridges that left 6 inches of clearance per side. The 45 foot Scania bus itself was newly refitted and appeared brand new. Every stop our driver would polish the chrome wheels with a cloth. It was as clean as might be possible.
The hotels we very impressive. The food was great with more variety than I was expecting. (more than Ecuador) this is not a fault of Gate1, its just the fact that the local food has less seasoning than we westerners are accustomed. The only challenge is crossing the streets in front of the Radisson hotel in San Jose.
There are no crosswalks or pedestrian cross lights. The easiest solution being to get a red cab to downtown San Jose. This is very easy to do from the hotel or anywhere in town for that matter. Expect $3-4 USD.
At the end of the day, a tour guide can make or break ANY trip regardless of tour operator. Speaking with 50 or so couples on both our trips, I had not heard one bad remark about Gate1 on any of their previous trips. We are already planning our next trip with Gate1. They have so far failed to disappoint and the value for dollar can not be matched with a travel agent or on our own.
Review sites like this are excellent to give others a head's up on what to expect. That said, it seems this board is used primarily for this wishing to submit a less than perfect review. It appears Gate 1 monitors this site and hopefully uses the feedback to improve their services.
Edgardo is a huge asset to Gate1. Enough can't be said about him.
Product or Service Mentioned: Gate1travel Tour.
Reason of review: Good quality.
Store Location: Bloomington, Indiana