Classic Costa Rica Tour

Discover some of the key attractions, from the Caribbean coast to the Pacific side, via the amazing Arenal volcano area.

Sitting between the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea, Costa Rica is home to an incredible range of rare flora and fauna. This small and extremely friendly country contains famed volcanoes, waterfalls, uncrowded beaches and national parks with bountiful wildlife. Discover the key attractions such as Tortuguero, Arenal, Monteverde and Manuel Antonio on this wide-ranging 11 day tour.

Tour highlights

  • Discover Costa Rica's unique & key attractions easily as you cross the country from the Caribbean coast to the Pacific. 
  • Spot wildlife from your boat as you explore Tortuguero national parks canal, home to monkeys, sloths and caiman.
  • Experience the biodiversity of Manuel Antonio Park and relax on some of the tropical beaches inside the park
  • Try a canopy tour within the Monteverde Cloud Forest
  • Marvel at the picture perfect Arenal volcano from your hotel.
  • Direct flights available with British Airways from London Gatwick (regional departures also possible)
  • Itinerary can be tailor-made to your requirements

Itinerary

Day 1

Arrival in San José

Meet and greet at San Jose Juan International Airport. Transfer to your hotel. Driving time: 20 minutes approx.

Located on famous Central Avenue, the central San Jose hotel is walking distance to the city's shopping, dining and cultural landmarks, including the National Theatre, National Museum, Gold Museums, Costa Rican Congress, Plaza de La Cultura and the National Cathedral.

Night at Presidente Hotel. Standard Room.

INCLUDES : Breakfast

Day 2

San José – Tortuguero

Early pick up from your hotel for the journey to the un-spoiled Caribbean coast area. Accompanied by a guide who will be with the small group for the whole time at Tortuguero, experience a scenic drive with a variety of landscapes as you travel through Braulio Carrillo National Park and beyond. There will be a break for breakfast where you will enjoy fresh local produce including delicious pineapple. Further on as the roads become basic tracks you will pass extensive banana plantations before reaching Caño Blanco pier to board a boat which is the only method of transport to reach the extraordinary exotic paradise of Tortuguero. Keep your camera handy as this is a wonderful wildlife-spotting opportunity as the boat meanders along verdant canals. Enjoy a refreshing cocktail and a delicious lunch as you arrive to the lodge. After lunch, visit the tiny town of Tortuguero: the green turtle information centre and beach area is the most important nesting site of the endangered green turtle in the Western Hemisphere. Giant leatherback, hawksbill, and loggerhead turtles also nest here (July - Sept).

From July to September optional night tour (not included in the package) to observe the turtle nesting.

Night at Mawamba Lodge. Standard Room.

INCLUDES : Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 3

Tortuguero

After breakfast, there is a guided walking tour through one of the lodge's trails, where you are likely to spot a howler monkey and observe interesting trees. There is some free time before lunch, chance to relax by the pool or talk a stroll on the beach. In the afternoon, there's a visit to Tortuguero National Park, exploring the canals in small, open boats to allow a better visibility. Tortuguero is a network of navigable lakes, rivers and canals (both natural and man-made) that are used for transportation and are a great place for observing local wildlife such as birds, monkeys, two and three-toed sloths, American crocodiles and caymans. The canals also provide shelter to endangered animals such as the Oriental Indian Manatee. More free time before dinner, enjoy a cocktail and watch the sunset while you mix and mingle with guests, sharing your experiences of the day.

Night at Mawamba Lodge. Standard Room.

INCLUDES : Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 4

Tortuguero – Arenal

After breakfast, head off back via the boat transfer through the canals again, enjoying the scenic ride once more to the pier, for the drive back through the lowlands with fruit plantations. Lunch is included before transferring to the Arenal area, an enjoyable drive of around 3 hours passing cattle ranches, pineapple plantations and sugar cane fields to name but a few as the road climbs up to the town of La Fortuna.

Night at Arenal Paraíso Hotel. Standard Room.

INCLUDES : Breakfast, Lunch

Day 5

Arenal

Few sites in Costa Rica inspire more respect and admiration than Arenal Volcano. At 5437 feet, its tall and conical shape stands imposing over the pastured green hillsides that surround its base. Although currently in a resting phase, Arenal remains Costa Ricas most active volcano for the past 43 years. Its history is charged with eruptions - both major and minor - that have intimately affected the region and the people who live here. This tour will allow you to enjoy the most extraordinary views of Arenal Volcano during a gentle hike along the lower slopes of the colossus. The walk begins in one of the trails close to the volcano and continues through the forest until reaching the area destroyed in its first eruption, back in 1968. This tour takes approximately 2 1/2 hours. 

Free time in the afternoon to relax at the hotel, which has a swimming pool and a river of thermal mineral waters; or if feeling more energetic head of on a hike close to the volcano, or follow nature trails to beautiful waterfalls. There are many optional activities on offer. 

Night at Arenal Paraíso Hotel. Standard Room.

INCLUDES : Breakfast, Lunch

Day 6

Arenal – Monteverde

After breakfast, depart the hotel and drive to the Lake Arenal Dam for a 30 minute scenic cruise across tranquil Lake Arenal (further views of the commanding volcano and a mountain range, with bird spotting opportunities as well as the area is popular with wetland birds including kingfishers. Following the boat trip sit back and enjoy an impressive drive up the mountainside on a steep road admiring stunning views of the lush valley and varied landscape to reach the town of Monteverde, located at the south end of the cloud forest. Here the climate is cooler, with an average of 17ºC (60ºF).

Night at Trapp Family Lodge. Superior Room.

INCLUDES : Breakfast

Day 7

Monteverde

Morning visit to Selvatura Park, for a Canopy and Walkways tour - after a briefing you will be kitted out to then 'fly' through 12 cables and 18 platforms with an optional Tarzan Swing at the end of the adventure. Selvatura Park is one of the longest Canopy Tours in Costa Rica and it is also the only canopy tour located inside the Monteverde Cloud Forest. Following this thrill there will be the chance to experience the tree top walkway along a range of bridges of various lengths and altitudes.

Afternoon at leisure; walk round the village of Monteverde or to take an optional excursion - night tours are popular in this area.

Night at Trapp Family Lodge. Superior Room.

INCLUDES : Breakfast

Day 8

Monteverde - Manuel Antonio

After breakfast, transfer to the Central Pacific coastal area. Another journey through varying countryside and many more glimpses of Costa Rican life, joining the Trans American Highway 1 briefly (the closest things get to a motorway!)

Manuel Antonio is one of Costa Rica's leading beach destinations, with some fine stretches of sandy beaches and good surfing conditions. There's a selection of bars and restaurants to try and yet more opportunities to encounter wildlife at the Manuel Antonio National Park.

Night at Parador Hotel. Garden Room.

INCLUDES : Breakfast

Days 9

Manuel Antonio National Park

After breakfast, visit Manuel Antonio National Park for a half day guided tour.

Manuel Antonio National Park is internationally recognized as being one of the most biodiverse parks on the planet. Lush tropical forests, lagoons, mangroves and pristine white sandy beaches make up one of the most diverse ecosystems imaginable. Among the 109 species of mammals and 184 species of birds, some of the frequently viewed residents include white-faced and howler monkeys, two and three toed sloths and iguanas. The endangered squirrel monkey calls the park home as well. After the tour you have the choice of remaining in the area to relax at Manuel Antonio beach or to return to the hotel to enjoy the facilities there in the afternoon.

Night at Parador Hotel, Garden Room.

INCLUDES : Breakfast

Day 10

Manuel Antonio

Breakfast at the Hotel. Day at leisure. Optional tours are not included but can be arranged at the hotel activity desk.

The Parador Hotel offers excellent dining at a selection of restaurants and bars on-site. It has a choice of swimming pools and runs a shuttle to nearby beaches. There is a nature trail within the hotel grounds.

Night at Parador Hotel. Garden Room.

INCLUDES : Breakfast

Day 11

Departure

Breakfast. Private transfer to San Jose's Juan Santamaria International airport (approx. 3 hours). Check in at airline counter must be done three hours prior to flight departure.

INCLUDES : Breakfast

Hotels

Pricing

10th October 2016 - 14th December 2016

4th January 2017 - 30th November 2017

Supplements


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