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If you want to undertake any other adventures while in San Isidro, contact Costa Rica Trekking Adventures ((tel) 2771-4582; www.chirripo.com), which offers organized treks through Chirripó National Park, as well as white-water rafting trips and other adventure tours.

Just 7km (4 1/3 miles) from San Isidro is Las Quebradas Biological Center (tel. 2771-4131), a community-run private reserve with 2.7km (1.75 miles) of trails through primary rainforest. Here you can hike the trails and visit the small info center, or you can stay overnight at a rustic lodge, with an option to buy three meals a day. Camping is also permitted.

Rest Your Weary Muscles Here -- 
If you’re tired and sore from so much hiking, check out the small Aguas Termales Gevi ((tel) 2742-5210), located off the road between San Gerardo de Rivas and Herradura. The entrance to these humble hot springs is 1km (1/2 mile) beyond San Gerardo de Rivas. There are two small pools here, as well as showers and changing rooms. The entrance fee is C3,500.

Where to See Quetzals in the Wild: Cerro de la Muerte & San Gerardo de Dota ★★

Between San José and San Isidro de El General, the Inter-American Highway climbs to its highest point in Costa Rica and crosses over the Cerro de la Muerte (Mountain of Death). About midway between San Isidro and Cartago, a deep valley descends toward the Pacific coast and the tiny town of San Gerardo de Dota. This area is one of the best places in Costa Rica to see quetzals. March through May is nesting season for these birds, and this is usually the best time to see them. However, it’s possible to spot them year-round.

If you plan on spending any time in the region and want to take an organized tour, contact Santos Tours ★ ((tel) 8855-9386; www.santostour.net), a local community tourism project that offers a range of active adventures, including waterfall hikes, coffee tours, and a canopy tour.

In addition, Dantica Cloud Forest Lodge ★ ((tel) 2740-1067; www.dantica.com) is a small collection of lovely, private bungalows in a forested setting near San Gerardo de Dota.

Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.