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Classic Costa Rica

Tailor Made Itinerary

10 Days From $3,308

Overview

Sandwiched between the Pacific Ocean on one side and the Caribbean on the other, tiny Costa Rica hosts an unparalleled array of flora and fauna. Its stunning mix of high mountains, lush rainforests and protected coastline can boast one of the richest concentrations of biodiversity on earth.

Home to the largest percentage of protected area anywhere in the world, this spectacular adventure takes you from Costa Rica’s bustling capital and deep into the rainforests of Tortuguero, Arenal ...

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TRIP HIGHLIGHTS

  • Take a chocolate tour at a cocoa plantation
  • Visit Don Juan Farm to learn about sustainable agriculture and enjoy lunch with his family
  • Search for sloths and quetzals in the Monteverde Cloud Forest
  • Bathe in volcanic hot springs heated by Arenal Volcano
  • Enjoy the pristine beaches of Manuel Antonio National Park
  • Navigate the swamp canals of Tortuguero by boat in search of turtles and caiman

ITINERARY

This is a suggested itinerary. Our experts have all travelled widely in the region and will be happy to tailor any of our itineraries to suit your tastes, or build a trip from scratch.

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DAY 1: SAN JOSE

DAY 1: SAN JOSE

Your journey begins in Costa Rica's bustling capital, one of the youngest in Central America. Set in a fertile landscape of coffee and sugar cane plantations, San José was founded in the middle of the 18th century by order of Cabildo de León and today provides us with one of the most cosmopolitan cities in the region. On arrival you will be met at the airport by your local guide and transferred to your hotel.

Park Inn

DAY 2: SAN JOSE - TORTUGUERO NATIONAL PARK

DAY 2: SAN JOSE - TORTUGUERO NATIONAL PARK

The drive on towards the Caribbean coast today traverses most of Costa Rica's varied terrain, taking you across mountainous divides, through lush rainforest and past banana plantations towards the deserted beaches of the Tortuguero National Park. Encompassing a vast expanse of evergreen swampland and volcanic islands, the park is famed for its large green sea turtles, which come to these protected shores to lay their eggs during the nesting season (July and September). You will cross Braulio Carrillo National Park, banana plantations and the town of Guapiles until you reach the dock to board a boat to Tortuguero. The boat ride to Mawamba Lodge takes around an hour depending on water levels. This afternoon sees you enjoying a privately guided visit to Tortuguero village. Participate in the artisanal process of harvesting, drying and grinding the cocoa beans and learn why cocoa was so important to the Mayas, Aztecs and Caribbean pirates. Enjoy dinner in a local restaurant owned by the wonderful Miss Junnie.

Mawamba Lodge
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 3: TORTUGUERO NATIONAL PARK

DAY 3: TORTUGUERO NATIONAL PARK

Boasting over 20 miles of coastline and 11 different habitats, Tortuguero is a haven, not only for turtles, but also for spectacled caiman, manatees, sloths and three of Costa Rica's four species of monkeys. You will spend the day visiting Mawamba Park within the lodge’s grounds. See the butterfly farms, frog garden, the bio-digester and river turtles' area. Then, continue exploring the lodges nature trails. This afternoon sees you navigating the parks tranquil canals by boat, discovering a beautiful and timeless landscape that was formed by a combination of river sedimentation and volcanic activity from the young mountains that lie farther inland.

Mawamba Lodge
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 4: TORTUGUERO - LA FORTUNA

DAY 4: TORTUGUERO - LA FORTUNA

Following breakfast, you will be transferred to the local airstrip by boat for your flight to La Fortuna. La Fortuna is known as the base from which to explore the magnificent Arenal Volcano and national park. Naturally heated thermal springs originate from its depth, so several places in the area offer the chance to be surrounded by nature and waterfalls while soaking and relaxing on the mineral waters. Upon arrival, you will be taken to Tabacon Hot Springs to enjoy the naturally heated waters and a delicious meal. Then continue to Arenal Springs Resort & Spa, your base for the next two nights.

Arenal Springs
Breakfast, Dinner

DAY 5: ARENAL

DAY 5: ARENAL

The smouldering cone of Arenal, Costa Rica's most active volcano, rises over 1,630 metres above the park beside the waters of the largest man-made lake in the country. A ride on the exhilarating Sky Tram to the top of the reserve presents some spectacular views of the lake and its surrounding forest. It also provides the starting point for a breathtaking adventure through the treetops, as you negotiate a series of zip lines across the park. After an exciting morning, you will visit Don Juan Farm to learn about sustainable agriculture (Don Juan Farm uses no pesticides and attracts a variety of bird species) and traditional sugar processing. Don Juan invites you into his family home and to take a tour of the plantation before sitting down to a delicious mouth-watering lunch made with some of the products he produces.

Arenal Springs
Breakfast, Lunch

DAY 6: ARENAL - MONTEVERDE

DAY 6: ARENAL - MONTEVERDE

The journey towards Monteverde today begins by boat and crosses Arenal Lake, an ideal way to take in the stunning volcanic scenery and the forested peaks of the Tilaran Mountain Range. Arenal Lake is the largest and the most important lake in Costa Rica, it was made in 1974 to provide hydroelectric energy for the country. The boat ride provides the opportunity to view some of the abundant species and wetland birds that have made these lake shores their home. Disembark and take an hour and a half (weather dependent) minibus to Monteverde Country Lodge. The Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve is a superlative natural setting with over 2,000 species of plants, some 400 different types of birds and over 100 mammal species settled within its lush confines.

Monteverde Country Lodge
Breakfast

DAY 7: MONTEVERDE

DAY 7: MONTEVERDE

One of the last remaining refuges of the rare and colourful Resplendent Quetzal, the Monteverde Cloud Forest is made up of 90% virgin forest. Spanning six ecological zones, it can boast some 5% of the total biodiversity of the entire planet and a gentle hike through it today provides the perfect setting to learn more about its history, flora and fauna. Alongside the quetzal, you could also hope to see sloths and primates, rare golden toads and wild pigs and any one of half a dozen species of beautiful hummingbirds.

Monteverde Country Lodge
Breakfast

DAY 8: MONTEVERDE - MANUEL ANTONIO

DAY 8: MONTEVERDE - MANUEL ANTONIO

Heading down the Central Pacific coast today you’ll stop beside the Tarcoles River for a jungle river and crocodile adventure. Along the banks of the Tarcoles lies the opportunity to observe one of the largest populations of American Crocodiles on the continent. Take by boat to explore the mangrove swamp area with its four different mangle species, each one representing an important ecological habitat for the different bird species and fauna of the region. Enjoy fresh fruit and an ice-cold beer, tropical cocktail, or soft drinks during the tour. Then it is on to Parador Boutique Resort & Spa in Manuel Antonio National Park, located along Costa Rica's Pacific coastline just to the south of the city of Quepos.

Parador Boutique Resort & Spa
Breakfast, Lunch

DAY 9: MANUEL ANTONIO NATIONAL PARK

DAY 9: MANUEL ANTONIO NATIONAL PARK

A national treasure, Manuel Antonio National Park has been voted amongst the most beautiful anywhere. Boasting one of the most impressive landscapes of any national reserve, the park is a wondrous mix of mountains and forests, beautiful coral reefs and white sand beaches. In the company of a naturalist guide today, you will set off in search of sloths and hunt for several types of non-poisonous snakes as you listen to the birdsong echoing through the forest. Afterwards there will be the opportunity to enjoy some of the unspoiled beaches, before returning to the hotel for your final evening.

Parador Boutique Resort & Spa
Breakfast

DAY 10: MANUEL ANTONIO - SAN JOSE

DAY 10: MANUEL ANTONIO - SAN JOSE

A private transfer back to San José in time to catch your international flight back home.

Breakfast

SUGGESTED ACCOMMODATION

Hotel Rating

Ultra
The best of the best, the ultimate in luxury
Luxury
Outstanding service and facilities, giving you the 5* experience
Premium
Excellent standards without the big price tag
Superior
Good quality service and overall comfort
Simple
No frills, basic accommodation, but often in the most exciting of places

Hotel Rating

Ultra
The best of the best, the ultimate in luxury
Luxury
Outstanding service and facilities, giving you the 5* experience
Premium
Excellent standards without the big price tag
Superior
Good quality service and overall comfort
Simple
No frills, basic accommodation, but often in the most exciting of places

Hotel Rating

Ultra
The best of the best, the ultimate in luxury
Luxury
Outstanding service and facilities, giving you the 5* experience
Premium
Excellent standards without the big price tag
Superior
Good quality service and overall comfort
Simple
No frills, basic accommodation, but often in the most exciting of places

Hotel Rating

Ultra
The best of the best, the ultimate in luxury
Luxury
Outstanding service and facilities, giving you the 5* experience
Premium
Excellent standards without the big price tag
Superior
Good quality service and overall comfort
Simple
No frills, basic accommodation, but often in the most exciting of places

Accommodation listed here is intended as a guide only, to give you a taste of what we can do. Our experts can tailor any aspect of this itinerary and accommodation to suit your budget and tastes.

GUIDELINE PRICE & WHAT’S INCLUDED

CLASSIC COSTA RICA (10 DAYS) $3,308

MEALS

As specified in the itinerary, sampling some of the country's finest cuisine.

TRANSPORT

Private air-conditioned vehicles with experienced, dedicated drivers.

ENTRANCE FEES

Tours and admission fees, including tickets specified in the itinerary.

EXPERT TEAM

Licensed English-speaking guides and a support team available 24/7.

ACCOMMODATION

As specified in the itinerary, using some of our favourite local properties.

ACCOMMODATION

Ultra
The best of the best, the ultimate in luxury
Luxury
Outstanding service and facilities, giving you the 5* experience
Premium
Excellent standards without the big price tag
Superior
Good quality service and overall comfort
Simple
No frills, basic accommodation, but often in the most exciting of places

CARBON CONTRIBUTIONS

If you book international flights through Wild Frontiers.

This itinerary is aimed to give you an idea of what we can offer. The price shown above is based on two people travelling outside of peak periods. As this itinerary is only a suggestion and can be tailor-made to suit your interests and budget, your final price may differ.

START PLANNING YOUR TRIP

Our team of experts have a wealth of knowledge and experience to help you plan your adventure of a lifetime.

WHEN TO GO

WHY WILD FRONTIERS?

Meet the expert, Richard

Richard is our Latin America expert, who has travelled extensively in the region.

Speak to Richard by calling
1(833) 200-4640

Famous, yes. Well-travelled, yes. Yet Costa Rica continues to hide eco-gems, off-path mountain lodges set in private nature reserves that share biodiversity with divine reverence.

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