Day 1 - SAN JOSE
Welcome to Costa Rica! Arrive in San José at Juan Santamaria International Airport, where you will be met on arrival by our local representative, who will provide you with your welcome kit, and transferred privately to your hotel. Overnight at the Hotel Finca Rosa Blanca, Cafetal room.
The capital of Costa Rica, the large, sprawling city of San José is the focal point of the Central Valley with a spectacular setting, ringed by jagged mountains and volcanoes on all sides. Due to earthquakes over the years, most of the colonial buildings and much of the charm of the city has disappeared. What remains today is a mixture of restored and rundown buildings huddled under a modern skyline. The city still retains a good mix of museums and general attractions that are of interest for those willing to get under the skin of the capital. The surrounding countryside of the Central Valley is stunning, characterised by coffee plantations; pockets of rain and cloud forests teeming with birdlife, butterflies and orchids; spectacular volcanic craters and tumbling rivers for rafting. It’s a great place to begin any trip to the country.
Hotel Finca Rosa Blanca
Finca Rosa Blanca Coffee Plantation & Inn crowns the Central Highlands of Costa Rica, offering a luxury sustainable hotel and exciting destination where the adventurous and curious traveller will experience the history and cultivation of coffee in Costa Rica and the museums, music, arts and culture of the local communities.
Day 2 - SAN JOSE
Today is a free day in San José, for you to rest and relax, or explore on your own. Overnight at the Hotel Finca Rosa Blanca. (B)
Day 3 - SAN JOSE – ARENAL
Today we transfer you to Arenal (approx 3.2 hours). The 12,016-hectare Arenal Volcano National Park lies within the 204,000-hectare Arenal Conservation Area, protecting eight of Costa Rica's 12 life zones and 16 protected reserves in the region between the Guanacaste and Tilarán mountain ranges, and including Arenal Lake. The rest of your day is at leisure. Overnight at Arenal Nayara Hotel, Deluxe room. (B)
Arenal Volcano National Park
Arenal Volcano has been constantly active since it woke up after 400 years and is one of the world's most active volcanoes. It produces huge ash columns, explosions and glowing red lava almost every day. Fascinating fauna and flora exist here in amazing quantities making this a prime location for viewing many different species of plants and animals. Among the principal fauna species are: pacas, deers, tapir, coatis, sloths, howler monkeys, white-faced monkeys, snakes and birds like quetzal, bellbird, and hummingbird. There are also over 850 identified birds that reside in the Arenal area.
Arenal Nayara Hotel
The Arenal Nayara Hotel and Gardens is surrounded by lush tropical rainforest, each one of its 25 spacious bungalows provides an exclusive retreat in which guests can relax amidst the breathtaking view of the volcano. The hotel has a wonderful view of the Arenal Volcano and is located on a 12 acre hilltop property surrounded by gardens and trees that attract many native birds to the beautiful property.
Day 4 - ARENAL
Today you have a free day at Arenal to enjoy as you wish. The Arenal area offers a plethora of activities and excursions of every sort. Visit one of the most beautiful waterfalls, the La Fortuna waterfalls, which are accessible on horseback or on foot through the national park and its beautiful collection of flora and fauna. Walk along hanging bridges in front of the volcano or coast through the air on an exciting canopy tour. Avid fishers and bird watchers should visit the Cano Negro Wildlife Refuge, which offers outstanding fishing trips on the Rio Frio. Explore this lively and rich environment with its natural splendours. Be sure to check out the Arenal National Park where hikes will follow trails to the active side of the Volcano or hike across suspension bridges facing the volcano. Lake Arenal offers first class windsurfing, swimming, boat rides, hikes, and kayaking. There are bird watching excursions, horseback riding trips and fantastic hot springs. Overnight at Arenal Nayara Hotel. (B)
Day 5 - ARENAL – TAMARINDO
Today we transfer you to Tamarindo (aprox 4.4 hours). Tamarindo Beach and Bay is part of Cabo Velas Cape. Playa Grande lies to the north of Tamarindo Beach inside the bay. The two beaches are separated by a natural salt water estuary, the Tamarindo mangroves. South of Tamarindo Bay there is another beautiful estuary and beach, Playa Langosta. Both Playa Grande and Playa Langosta are protected areas for the giant leatherback turtle, and part of Costa Rican National Park system. These beaches are a major worldwide nesting area for sea turtles - the nesting season is from October to March.
Optional tours led by official guides are available to take visitors to see this incredible spectacle. Another very special optional tour is the jungle boat ride. Small groups are ferried on locally built skiffs deep into the mysterious mangrove forest, where a breathtaking diversity of birds, mammals, and reptiles can be seen. Overnight at Tamarindo Diria Hotel, Sunset Ocean View room. (B)
Tamarindo, once a small fishing village, has now transformed into a well developed tourist destination known for its favorable surfing conditions. Besides the countless beach and water activities available, the area is also home to the wildlife refuge of Diria, and the Marino Las Baulas National Park, where leatherback turtles come every summer to nest. The town is built around the white sand beach with blue ocean waters, attracting beachgoers and nature lovers. This area, with its glorious beaches, offers outstanding surfing opportunities for beginners, intermediate and experienced surfers. Sport fishing tours are a great way to get out into these blue waters for the chance to catch Sailfish, Yellow Fin Tuna and Dorado. Watch the majestic leatherback turtles come upon shore to nest at Playa Grande or enjoy an early bird watching tour. Take a kayak snorkeling tour, horseback ride along beautiful beaches, or zip through the canopy of the tropical dry forest on a canopy tour.
Tamarindo Diria Hotel
Tamarindo Diria Beach Resort is the only hotel located directly on the white sand beach of Tamarindo and is surrounded by exotic and beautifully maintained lush tropical gardens. Here you can enjoy the PGA Golf Driving Range, a tennis court and a casino for those wanting to try their luck. The pool areas are lined with lounge chairs for sunbathing and the swim up bar offers fantastic tropical cocktails. The Amphitheater, which hosts special events and live music such as jazz, rock and symphonies during moonlit nights, is certainly a welcomed treat at this resort. This beautiful hotel offers a variety of accommodations to suit your needs.
Days 6 & 7 - TAMARINDO
You have two free days at Tamarindo to rest and relax. Two nights at Tamarindo Diria Hotel. (2B)
Day 8 - TAMARINDO – MONTEVERDE
Today we transfer you to Monteverde (approx 3 hours). The spectacular Monteverde Cloud Forest Biological Reserve is a very important and popular ecotourism destination in Costa Rica. The rest of your day is at leisure, and you spend the night at the Fonda Vela Hotel, Junior Suite. (B)
With its unique cloud canopy, this biological reserve located in Puntarenas province is 6km east of the town of Santa Elena. Monteverde Cloud Forest Biological Reserve is one of the most stunning and breathtaking nature reserves in the entire world. Unlike rainforests, cloud forests usually receive much less rain in comparison. However, because a cloud forest is situated at a higher altitude, it has more humidity and is therefore cloudier than a rainforest. This biological reserve sits at an elevation of between 1,200m to 1,600m, and is surrounded by a misty cover that supports a fantastic diversity of flora and fauna. Often creating a surreal environment, this reserve is considered to be among the most exceptional wildlife sanctuaries in the New World Tropics.
Fonda Vela Hotel
Hotel Fonda Vela has been honored by receiving international distinction from travel critics. This praise confirms the hotels intentions: to provide accommodations in harmony with the surrounding beauty. On the 35-acre property located just minutes from the Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve, you will find lush forests and verdant pastures that are excellent for birding and hiking. Guests can enjoy the elegant and spacious restaurant with fireplace, a bar and a TV room. Throughout the lodge you will find paintings of the owners father as well as the work of local artists. The Fonda Vela Hotel has nine buildings nestled in the mountainous terrain, designed to optimize natural lighting, privacy and warmth. All accommodations have large windows with views of the forest, allowing the outside beauty to be a part of a cozy interior.
Day 9 - MONTEVERDE
Today is a free day at Monteverde for you to enjoy as you wish. Overnight at the Fonda Vela Hotel. (B)
Day 10 - MONTEVERDE – MANUEL ANTONIO
Today we transfer you to Manuel Antonio (approx 4.2 hours). Arrive and check in to your hotel, where the rest of your day is free to explore as you wish. Take a walk through the tropical forest and find mosses, ferns, flowers and epiphytes growing thickly on every tree. Throughout the park, you will find the famous wildlife Costa Rica is known for - monkeys, sloths and lots of birds among others. Overnight at the Arenas del Mar Hotel, Ocean Breeze Superior room. (B)
Manuel Antonio National Park
Manuel Antonio on the Pacific Coast, with an estuary, mangroves, a lagoon, beaches and winding paths, is on 638 hectares of land and 55,000 hectares of protected marine environment. Undoubtedly, one of the biggest draws of Manuel Antonio is its national park. Internationally recognised as one of the planet’s most biologically diverse parks, Manuel Antonio National Park is virtually teeming with wildlife. A trip here offers visitors the chance to spot several types of monkeys, birds, lizards and insects. In addition to its wildlife viewing, the park has two gorgeous white-sand beaches – some of the country’s best places to relax beside the sea. Outside the park, there is much to see and do as well. Visitors can spend their time whitewater rafting, horseback riding, sea kayaking, or zip-lining, among other things. Additionally, the nearby port town of Quepos offers some of the country’s best sport-fishing.
Arenas del Mar
Arenas del Mar is a breathtaking beachfront resort situated in the rainforest of Manuel Antonio, on Costa Rica's central Pacific coast. The hotel is situated near the gorgeous Manuel Antonio National Park, which houses exuberant vegetation and wildlife. Visitors looking for a tropical paradise will find just what they are looking for at Arenas del Mar, where the warm sun will bathe you and the ocean breezes will soothe you
Days 11 & 12 - MANUEL ANTONIO
Two free days at Manuel Antonio to rest or explore as you wish. Two nights at Arenas del Mar Hotel. (2B)
Day 13 - MANUEL ANTONIO – SAN JOSE
Today we transfer you back to San José for your overnight stay, ready to fly home tomorrow. Journey time approx 3.5 hours, and the rest of your day is at leisure. Overnight at Hotel Finca Rosa Blanca, Cafetal room. (B)
Day 14 - SAN JOSE – DEPARTURE
Your trip comes to an end today, and we transfer you to the International Airport for your onward flight arrangements. (B)
*Please note that Manuel Antonio NP is closed on a Monday
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