Costa Rica in 12 Days
Rainforests, Volcanoes & Tropical Beaches
Our classic tour of Costa Rica, from the magnificent Arenal volcano to the rainforests of Monteverde and the laid-back beaches of Tamarindo.
Discover the abundant nature of Costa Rica and enjoy the perfect combination of adventure and relaxation. Stroll through the historic streets of San Jose, discover the rich diversity of the country's rainforests and feel the strength of the Arenal Volcano. Explore the abundant cloud forests of lush Monteverde and enjoy the Guanacaste sunshine in the tropical paradise of Tamarindo.
12 days trip including flights*
12 days and 11 nights in destination
LON - SJO
SJO - LON
* It may change depending of your departure city, departure date and arrival date.
The calendar does not display internal flights, trains or other transportation included in the itinerary.
Arrive at your UK departure airport to board a flight to San José. Arrive in the capital of Costa Rica and transfer to your hotel. Overnight stay in San Jose.
Breakfast at the hotel. Set off early in the morning towards Arenal, passing by the lush landscapes of the interior of the country. Arrive and check-in to the hotel. In the afternoon, meet your guide in the hotel lobby and embark on a guided hike to the Arenal Volcano. Enjoy a hiking experience through trails marked with the remains of previous lava flows of the impressive and majestic Arenal Volcano. The main attraction of La Fortuna is the Arenal Volcano with its nearly perfect cone shape and a height of 1633 meters. Along the hike you will discover the abundant flora and some fauna which inhabits the rainforest under re-generation; your guide will tell you all about the Arenal Volcano history and activity. After the hike, you may choose two different options to experience the popular hot springs in the area to relax in the warm waters, heated by the volcano (optional extras).* Overnight stay in Arenal.
* Thermal Hot Springs in Tabacón: Enjoy one of the main natural wonders of the country with waterfalls that form natural pools whose thermal waters emerge directly from the impressive and active Arenal Volcano. Dinner included.
* Paradise Hot Springs Pass: Enjoy an evening of indulgence with a pass to the Paradise Natural Hot Springs, heated by the Arenal Volcano. Enjoy access to three different hot pools and two hydromassage hot tubs, perfect for relaxing in the beautiful tropical surroundings.
Breakfast at the hotel. Set off for an exciting morning of rainforest activity. Enjoy a Hanging Bridges Excursion through the lush, abundant rainforest of Arenal. Admire the beauty of the forest and the backdrop of the Arenal Volcano and gain valuable insight into the native plant and animal species from your expert guide. Return to the hotel and enjoy an afternoon at your leisure, exploring at your own pace or relaxing in the abundant hot springs. Overnight stay in Arenal.
Breakfast at the hotel. Free day to enjoy the tranquillity of this beautiful natural environment. We recommend the optional horseback ride excursion.* Overnight stay in Arenal.
* Optional Half-Day Horseback Ride Excursion: Set off on a scenic horseback ride to appreciate the beauty of nature and the sounds, colour and energy of the rainforest. Ascend to a viewpoint where you will have an impressive view of the Arenal Volcano and Lake Arenal. Also, enjoy a brief walking tour to one of the park's suspension bridges. Lunch included.
Breakfast at the hotel. In the morning, set off towards Monteverde, travelling along the banks of Lake Arenal for breathtaking views of the volcano. Cross the lake on a shared boat service*and continue by road for the remainder of the journey. Arrive in Monteverde, one of the richest and diverse rainforests in the world, home to extensive trails, abundant wildlife including several monkey species, and astounding natural beauty. Check-in to the hotel and enjoy an afternoon at your leisure. Overnight stay in Monteverde.
* Please note: The shared boat service across the lake may be replaced by a road transfer around the shore of Lake Arenal.
Breakfast at the hotel. Get up close to the wildlife of Costa Rica this morning on an excursion to Monteverde Cloud Forest. Explore the rich cloud forests and extensive nature trails of Monteverde Cloud Forest. Observe wildlife ranging from jaguars to butterflies and quetzals as you traverse a number of different trails through 8 different ‘life-zones’ ranging from swamps to cloud forests. In the afternoon, return to the hotel and spend the rest of the day at your leisure. We recommend an optional Canopy Tour.* Overnight stay in Monteverde.
* Optional Monteverde Canopy Tour: Explore the canopy on one of the longest cables in the country and cross suspension bridges and zip lines of more than 900 feet high, from where you can explore the treetops and the wide biological diversity of the rainforest. We recommend wearing long trousers, a light jacket and comfortable shoes.
Breakfast at the hotel. Enjoy the day at your leisure, relaxing in the tranquil surroundings or exploring the diverse eco-system of this magical place. As the sun sets, set off on a Night Walk in Monteverde. Discover the abundant wildlife of Monteverde as you take several different trails around the well-preserved reserve. Your guide will provide you with the necessary equipment for the best chance of spotting the unique wildlife in the reserve, especially the hard to spot nocturnal species. After an evening of exciting wildlife spotting, return to the hotel. Overnight stay in Monteverde.
Breakfast at the hotel. Transfer to Tamarindo, in the province of Guanacaste, known for its beautiful beaches and surfing. Arrive at the hotel and begin to enjoy your stay surrounded by idyllic beaches, bathed in Guanacaste sunshine. Overnight stay in Tamarindo.
Breakfast at the hotel. In the morning enjoy a boat safari in Las Baulas National Park to discover the unique flora and fauna which inhabit the lush mangroves. Look out for noisy howler monkeys, crocodiles and iguanas, whilst appreciating the colourful birdlife above. Slowly travel along the channels, so as not to disturb the wildlife, and admire the wonderful natural beauty of the reserve. Return to the hotel and the remainder of the day is at your leisure to relax on the paradise beaches of the Pacific Coast. Overnight stay in Tamarindo.
Breakfast at the hotel. Free day to enjoy this tropical Costa Rican paradise located on the Pacific North Coast, with dreamy beaches bathed by the Guanacaste sun. We recommend an optional morning Catamaran Tour.* Overnight stay in Tamarindo.
* Optional Catamaran Tour: Set off in the morning on a relaxing catamaran tour. The route is the same as the afternoon but with much less boat traffic. Look out for marine life such as whales, dolphins and rays, and enjoy snorkelling in the clear waters. Buffet brunch included.
Breakfast at the hotel. Transfer back to the capital, to spend your last night in San José. We suggest taking a stroll through this beautiful city, visiting the National Theatre of Costa Rica or enjoying a delicious dinner at a local restaurant. For a great overview of the city, we recommend an optional city tour of San Jose.* Overnight stay in San José.
* Optional San Jose City Tour: Visit the most prominent sights of the city such as the National Theater, the Art Museum, the Metropolitan Cathedral and the charming Central Market, among other places. Traditional dinner included.
Breakfast at the hotel. At the indicated time, transfer to the airport to board your flight* back to the UK. Arrive in the UK and end your trip.
* If your return flight departs in the evening, your arrival in the US will be the following day and the total duration of your trip will be 13 days.
*In case the advertised hotels are not available they will be replaced by one of these alternative hotels with the same quality: Holiday Inn Aurola San Jose, Park Inn by Radisson San Jose, Sleep Inn Hotel Paseo Las Damas, Wyndham Garden.
Included activity for day 2 in Arenal
Duration 03:00h Approx. Pick up time: 14:30 Approx
Guided hike to the Arenal Volcano
Take a guided hiking excursion to the Mirador el Silencio to discover the abundant landscapes of the incredible Arenal Volcano! Discover the rich flora and fauna of the rainforest and learn about one of Costa Rica's most iconic natural wonders.
What's included: Transfer, bilingual guide, entrance to the park
Included activity for day 3 in Arenal
Duration 02:30h Approx. Pick up time: 07:50 Approx
Hanging Bridges of Arenal
Enjoy a Hanging Bridges Excursion through the lush, abundant rainforest of Arenal. Admire the beauty of the forest and the backdrop of the Arenal Volcano and gain valuable insight into the native plant and animal species from your expert guide.
What's included: Entrance to the bridges
Included activity for day 6 in Monteverde
Duration 04:00h Approx. Pick up time: 07:45 Approx
Excursion to Monteverde Cloud Forest
Explore the rich cloud forests and extensive nature trails of Monteverde Cloud Forest. Observe wildlife ranging from jaguars to butterflies and quetzals as you traverse a number of different trails through 8 different ‘life-zones’.
Included activity for day 7 in Monteverde
Duration 02:30h Approx. Pick up time: 17:45 Approx
Monteverde Night Walk
Discover the abundant wildlife of Monteverde after dark as you take several different trails around the well-preserved reserve. Your guide will provide you with the necessary equipment for the best chance of spotting nocturnal species!
What's included: Flashlight
If you have reduced mobility you can request assistance for these activities by speaking to one of our experts
Suggested activity for day 2 in Arenal
Duration 04:00h Approx. Pick up time: 17:30 Approx
Arenal: Tabacón Thermal Baths Excursion
One of the natural wonders of Costa Rica, bathe in the thermal waters that emerge directly from the impressive and active Arenal Volcano! Relax and unwind as you enjoy the therapeutic properties of these natural springs. Dinner included.
Suggested activity for day 4
Duration 00:00h Approx. Pick up time: 07:30 Approx
Half-Day Horse Riding Excursion
Set off on a scenic horseback ride to appreciate the beauty of nature and the sounds, colour and energy of the rainforest. Ascend to a viewpoint where you will have an impressive view of the Arenal Volcano and Lake Arenal.
Suggested activity for day 6
Monteverde Canopy High Ropes Tour
Explore the canopy on one of the longest cables in the country and cross suspension bridges and zip lines of more than 900 feet high, from where you can explore the treetops and the wide biological diversity of the rainforest.
Suggested activity for day 10
Tamarindo Catamaran Excursion
Experience a catamaran tour of a special kind. In addition to beautiful landscapes over the water, enjoy snorkelling and an included buffet brunch.
The price includes
- Included in all our trips. more information
- Departures from main UK/Ireland airports.
- International flights: UK/Ireland - San José - UK/Ireland.
- 11 nights accommodation in Charm and Superior category hotels.See hotels included
- 11 Breakfasts.
- Transfers in air-conditioned vehicles.
- Visits and entrance fees as indicated in the itinerary.See itinerary
- All air taxes and fuel surcharge.
- Boat Safari in the Tamarindo Estuary.
- Exclusive access to Langosta Beach Club. *more information
- ATOL Protection.
- English speaking guide only during the excursions.
Drinks, tips and any other services not mentioned in what's included.
* As a guest of Wyndham Tamarindo you have exclusive access to Langosta Beach Club, located in Tamarindo, on the road to Playa Langosta.
The Foreign & Commonwealth Office offer up-to-date travel advice by visiting www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice.
- Entry requirementsValid passport with at least six months validity.
- VisaVisa is not required for stays less than 90 days.
- CurrencyCosta Rican Colon
- Electricity110 V. Adapter required.
- HealthPlease consult your doctor regarding malaria prophylaxis.
- Time zoneUTC - 06:00
- Other useful informationLocal emergency number: 128
- Tourist Office websitehttps://www.visitcostarica.com/en
Remember to download your e-ticket to confirm the times of your flights and to complete online check-in using the airline’s website, or directly at the check-in desk at the airport.
Accommodation at the hotels is as indicated. In the event of any changes to accommodation, they will always be of the same, or a higher category. The category of hotels is not standardized across all countries in the world. For this reason, the criteria may differ depending on the destination country's own standards.
In the case of adverse weather conditions, for safety reasons or for any other reasons deemed appropriate, the order and duration of the excursions included in the itinerary may be changed or cancelled without prior notice.
Children: 2 - 10 years.
Exoticca Travel Stories
Creating unforgettable memories, one traveller at a time
Everything was great and on point.
Hotels, transportation and activities, everything was as shown in the itinerary. Great communication with the local guides onsite.
Save when buying your next trip thanks to super discounted prices that we negotiate with airlines and hotels.
General coverage and bonding insurance included for free to protect against unforseen circumstances and company bankruptcy.