Elizabeth and Dan had a beautiful destination wedding on the Caribbean side of Costa Rica near Puerto Viejo in Punta Uva. The quiet beach at Punta Uva is known for its calm reef protected water, white sand and located 8.5 km (about 5 miles) from downtown Puerto Viejo. Most of the area is located within the Gandoca-Manzanillo Wildlife Refuge so nature viewing opportunities are abundant with monkeys, sloths, and many species of birds.
When I put together these short stories to go along with the wedding photos I ask the clients why they chose Costa Rica for their destination wedding and how they met. Almost always the information comes from the newly wed bride, but with Elizabeth and Dan, Dan sent me the information and I have to say that it was refreshing and really impressed and touched me what Dan replied so I just wanted to share it verbatim, so below is Dan’s reply.
“Why did we choose Costa Rica? Well to be honest we had a $5k budget for our wedding, and we wanted to have an epic adventure everyone would remember for the rest of their lives. You only really get all your people in the same place twice in life, once when you get married, and again when you die, so forget a day, we wanted a whole week. How do you convince all of your friends and family to hang out for a week with their busy American lifestyles. Invite them on a once in a lifetime adventure vacation, and make it as cost efficient as possible. We love to travel internationally, and eventually want to sail around the world together, so destination wedding was of course what we really wanted to do.
It seemed like an almost impossible task to pull off, especially with our budget, but we were convinced there was a way. We put together a list of the countries we wanted to travel to, looked at vacation rental costs, and flight costs from all 6 states we wanted people to fly out from. Due to flight costs our first 2 choices Italy and New Zealand were quickly dismissed. Costa Rica was 3rd on our list, and mostly because I have been trying to hang out with a sloth in the wild for over a decade. Literally with an hour or two of searching the internet I had found the place in Punta Uva, which cost $2K for a whole week and could house everyone. The access to the beach meant we could use it as the venue, Sept was a good month for the area weather wise, there were said to be sloths on the property, and everyone could get round trip tickets for less than $500 from the US. The jaguar rescue, zip-line adventure, snorkeling, beach and other tours meant there was more than a week worth of stuff to do. It was the beginning of a lot of events that eventually lead up to the best day of our lives.
I can go on about how we did almost no planning other than getting the venue and providing transportation, about all the local people we meet that went over and above for us, (including Diego), how all our friends rallied on the wedding day to make it absolutely stress free for us. I’m not sure how much you want. From beginning to end it was the most amazing experience of my life. Everything exceeded any expectation we had. Diego was awesome and fit in with our group really well, wish he would have been able to stay and hang out. Elizabeth can help you with info about how we met, if you want more of the story about our epic wedding adventure to Costa Rica with our 25 best friends and family I am more than happy to share.
Thanks again, the photos so far have exceeded our expectations!!!”