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N2 Costa Rica - Paradise between two Oceans - 11 days

Sarapiqui, Rainforest Rio San Carlos, Arenal Volcano, Guanacaste / Rincón de la Vieja Volcano & National Park, Monteverde Cloudforest

Detailed description N2 (Comfort+, with english-speaking naturalist guide)

Day 1

San Jose - (-)
Welcome! Upon your arrival at San José International Airport our English-speaking representative will greet you and escort you to your hotel. At this time you will be provided a short briefing and an informative travel handout.
Overnight stay Hotel Don Carlos

Day 2

San Jose - Puerto Viejo de Sarapiqui - Chocolate Tour Tirimbina Rainforest Reserve - (BF)
Costa Rica - San JoseAfter breakfast, your guide will take you on a sightseeing tour of San José. The Gold Museum is your first stop; here you will have the chance to learn more about pre-Columbian culture and the crafts and jewellery that our ancestors made from gold and other precious stones and metals. Your next stop is the National Theater. It is a picturesque, architectonical Costa Rican jewel. Continue your trip to Puerto Viejo de Sarapiquí.
In the afternoon discover the secrets and marvels of one of the favourite foods of human kind, chocolate. The Chocolate Tour begins by taking you across the popular suspension bridge of the Tirimbina Reserve into a former cacao (Theobroma cacao) plantation. During the walk, you will learn about the natural and cultural history of the cacao tree. Upon reaching the plantation, a Tirimbina Reserve guide will reveal the secrets of transforming the cacao fruit into chocolate. You'll have a first-hand experience of the chocolate-making process and might treat yourself with organic rainforest chocolate!
Overnight stay La Quinta de Sarapiqui

Day 3

Rainforest Rio San Carlos - (BF,D)
Today you will drive to the north, through the fertile and picturesque lowlands of San Carlos, passing pineapple and "palmito" (heart of palm) plantations. The Laguna del Lagarto Lodge is situated in a 1,200 acres private rain forest reserve in the north of the country (Boca Tapada) near the Nicaraguan border, built in harmony with the surrounding nature. Just a few years ago, the trip to this rustic, yet beautiful place would have meant an expedition of several days. Today, it can be reached from San José by 4x4 vehicle within 3 to 4 hours.
Overnight stay Lagarto Lodge

Rainforest Rio San Carlos, Costa RicaCosta Rica: Rainforest Rio San Carlos Costa Rica: Rainforest Rio San Carlos

Day 4

Rainforest Rio San Carlos - (BF,D)
Discover pure, unspoiled jungle! Stroll through tropical primary forest (1 introductory rainforest hike included) by yourself or with a guide. Multiple trails of more than 10 miles in length make the exploration of this mostly untouched paradise easy. The variety of animals and plants here is staggering and simply marvellous: red and green poison dart frogs, several types of monkeys and more than 350 species of birds, amongst them macaws, toucans and hummingbirds. This region is one of the few where the great green macaw can still be seen – a species that is in danger of extinction. By canoe you can enter the lagoons and discover hidden estuaries with plenty of bromeliads, nesting bats and bright green "Jesus Christ" lizards (the name derives from their ability of walking on water). After sunset caimans can be observed while they feed. Warm, starry evenings and cool breezes on a covered porch with a refreshing drink and a concert by jungle inhabitants: This is what great memories are made of.
Overnight stay Laguna del Lagarto Lodge

Costa Rica: Rainforest Rio San CarlosCosta Rica: Rainforest Rio San CarlosRainforest Rio San Carlos, Costa Rica

Day 5

Arenal Volcano – (BF)
Arenal Lake, Costa RicaAfter breakfast, you will head off to La Fortuna and the Arenal Volcano. The drive will take you through the lush mountains of the Cordillera Central, past flourishing coffee and fruit plantations. In the late afternoon you may enjoy an evening at the hot springs of Ecotermales, savour a soothing bath in waterfalls and natural pools with the fresh evening air and the starry sky as a backdrop, all of this within beautiful, tropical gardens.
Overnight stay Lomas del Volcan

Day 6

Arenal Volcano - Guanacaste / Rincon de la Vieja Volcano – (BF)
Today is time for you to explore the area! Hike with your guide through the secondary forest of the Arenal Volcano National Park and over the lava fields at the foot of Arenal Volcano. The area contains a great wealth of geologic and biological complexity.
After the hike you will enjoy a drive around Arenal Lake to Cañas, then further on to Liberia and Rincón de la Vieja National Park. Your night time accommodation includes a rustic mountain lodge at the foot of volcanic hills.
Please notice that the Rincón de la Vieja National Park is closed on Mondays!
Overnight stay Hacienda Lodge Guachipelin

Day 7

Guanacaste / Rincón de la Vieja Volcano – (BF)
A hearty breakfast is a good idea in preparation for this day of hikes through the national park. You’ll begin with about 2 hours through wet forest with numerous crossings of various mountain rivers. You’ll also encounter dry and hot plateaus with little vegetation. At last you will reach the “Blue Lake" whose natural basin is nourished by a spectacular waterfall of turquoise-blue that invites you for a refreshing swim. Later on, continue your hike down to the park’s main attractions: bubbling mud pools, pits of boiling hot water, vapor geysers and fumaroles (deep holes that emit sulfurous vapor). If all of this doesn’t impress you with some sense of a volcano’s natural power, nothing will.
Overnight stay Hacienda Lodge Guachipelin

Costa Rica: Hacienda Lodge Guachipelin, Rincon de la ViejaGuanacaste, Rincon de la ViejaCosta Rica: Rincon de la Vieja Volcano

Day 8

Monteverde Cloud Forest – (BF)
After breakfast, you’ll continue south on the Interamericana before taking on 35 km’s of adventurous gravel road, winding your way to Sta. Elena in the Monteverde Cloud Forest region. Once in Monteverde, there are numerous optional activities that you may enjoy during the remainder of your afternoon, including a visit to the Frog Pond, the Snake Farm, or the Orchid Garden (entrance fees not included)
Overnight stay Hotel Belmar

Day 9

Monteverde Cloud Forest – (BF)
Your adventurous day begins with a "walk in the clouds." Start hiking through lush forest toward the "Walkways" of Selvatura; suspended bridges, platforms and trails deep within the canopy of the cloud forest. From here you can catch a gentle, rare glimpse through the tops of giant trees into this hidden world that would otherwise remain a mystery to most of us. While exploring the different trails keep your binoculars or camera handy, since you might catch a glimpse of the rare and famous bird of kings – the Quetzal!
There are numerous optional activities that you are welcome to enjoy during the remainder of your afternoon, including a visit to the Frog Pond, the Snake Farm, or the Orchid Garden. .
Overnight stay Hotel Belmar

Costa Rica: MonteverdeMonteverde Cloud Forest, Costa RicaCosta Rica: Monteverde

Day 10

San José – (BF)
Ride back to San José. Once in San José, the remainder of the day is yours to do as you wish. Once you get to San José is time to say goodbye to your Guide. If you wish, you might visit one of the various galleries or museums (optional - entrance fees not included).
Overnight stay Hotel Don Carlos

Day 11

Departure – (BF)
Transfer to the airport or transfer to the booked beach hotel.

BF = Breakfast, L = Lunch, D = Dinner, BL = Box Lunch


This tour is available in 3 different versions:

  • "Comfort+" Tour (with driver/guide and private vehicle) - see description above
  • "Wheels & Vouchers" self driving tour OR
  • "Budget+ Tour" with semiprivate transfers from hotel to hotel

Prices and services included

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