Week of November 9-16, 1995
Swiss vacations for serious hardbodies
Q: What travel destination in Central America would you recommend for bike touring? I'm looking for a country where I can bike for ten days and would have some camping or hotel facilities at every stop.
A: Of all the countries in Central America, we recommend Costa Rica for its optimal biking terrain and stable political situation. An established tour group will keep you away from the largest tourist areas and on roads not on the map. With ExperiencePlus, you have a choice of two trips: For $995, the group plots your route, transports your luggage, and provides seven nights accommodation, while you otherwise strike out on your own. On a nine-day, 204-mile trip, guides fit you with a bike and take you through sugar cane fields, coffee plantations, grazing land, active volcanoes, and rainforests, to a final destination on the coast. The $1,495 price includes eight nights accommodation, seven dinners, breakfasts, and shuttles to and from the San Jose International Airport. For more information, call 800-685-4565. Go off the beaten path with Backroads, 800-462-2848, which offers an eight-day Costa Rica mountain bike trip with hiking options. Ride on dirt roads and fire trails past active Arenal Volcano, up a mountainside to the Monteverde Cloud Forest Preserve, and stay in rustic villages along the way. The $1798 price includes all lodging, most meals, and ground transportation. If you don't want to haul your bike across international borders, pay an extra $149 to rent one.