You don’t want to miss out on this tour as it covers all of the highlights the country has to offer.
DAY 1 SAN JOSÉ, COSTA RICA (D)
Welcome to the “rich coast,” friendly land of democracy and rare natural beauty. With naturalist guides, see exotic birds and wildlife, hike in jungle rainforests, view volcanoes, soak in hot springs and cruise through biological reserves. Transfers are provided from the Juan Santamaria International Airport (SJO) in San José, Costa Rica to your hotel. Rooms are available for check in after 4:00 p.m. Join the group for an 8:00 p.m. welcome briefing. Dinner is served until 9:30 p.m. at your hotel.
DAY 2 POÁS VOLCANO, CLOUD FOREST (B/L/D)
Morning visit to Costa Rica’s most popular park, Poás Volcano. Weather permitting, you can see inside the active crater from an overlook. Next, hike the Escalonia Cloud Forest Trail, home to epiphytes, orchids, ferns and tropical hummingbirds. Cloud forests are like rainforests, but with less rain and more humidity. Lunch. Then enjoy a guided tour at a coffee plantation. Sample fresh Costa Rican coffee, stroll among coffee trees. Continue to Fortuna in the San Carlos Valley for a two night stay. Dinner.
DAY 3 – CAÑO NEGRO CRUISE, HOT SPRINGS (B/L/D)
Head north this morning, passing through sugar cane, teak, pineapple, and orange plantations. Then, cruise on the Rio Frio which runs through the world famous Caño Negro wildlife refuge, home to many migratory birds found nowhere else in Costa Rica. Look for black turtles, whistling ducks, roseate spoonbills, cormorants, anhingas, blue heron, and northern jacanas. Watch for caimans, howler monkeys, spider monkeys, green iguanas, and water-walking lizards. Lunch. Return to Fortuna. This afternoon enjoy a relaxing soak in the volcanic hot springs.
DAY 4 – HANGING BRIDGES, LEATHERBACK TURTLE PARK (B/L/D)
Morning visit to the Hanging Bridges. With a naturalist guide, hike the suspension bridges. Weather permitting, enjoy views of majestic Arenal Volcano. Next, enjoy a scenic drive around Lake Arenal. Lunch. Then, to Costa Rica’s beautiful Pacific Coast. Visit Leatherback Turtle National Park and learn about Costa Rica’s efforts to protect this endangered giant. The leatherback is the largest marine reptile in the world, weighing over 1,500 pounds. Continue to the J.W. Marriott Guanacaste Resort and Spa for a relaxing two night stay.
DAY 5 GUANACASTE BEACH RESORT (B/L/D)
Free time today to enjoy your magnificent world class beach resort. Visit the elegant spa or swim in your hotel’s infinity pool, the largest in Central America. Lunch. Time to beachcomb while strolling your resort’s pristine beach. Dinner.
DAY 6 BIRD WATCHING CRUISE, MANUEL ANTONIO (B/L/D)
This morning, drive though the cattle ranches of Guanacaste. Stop at the Monteverde Cooperative. Lunch. Next, cruise on the Tarcoles River, adjacent to the Carara Biological Reserve. Float through a mangrove forest. Enjoy bird watching and crocodile spotting. Look for white and snowy egrets and the amazing nests of the montezuma oropendola. This tropical bird and wildlife sanctuary is a nesting site for the scarlet macaw. Continue to Manuel Antonio. You’ll stay at the only hotel next to the National Park, conveniently located directly at the entrance.
DAY 7 MANUEL ANTONIO, AERIAL TRAM (B/L/D)
Early morning visit to world famous Manuel Antonio National Park, a natural habitat for the white face monkey, the rare squirrel monkey and the three-toed sloth. Hike through the rainforest and along the spectacular beach coves, ranking among the most beautiful in the world. Look for toucans and parrots. (Please note: Park visit may take place on Day 6, when Day 7 is a Monday.) The rest of your morning is at leisure. Enjoy your hotel’s pools and rooftop terrace, or visit nearby artisan shops. Lunch. Then, a thrilling aerial tram adventure. Glide through and above a dry tropical transitional forest. Enjoy views of waterfalls and the Pacific Ocean. Visit a butterfly garden. Return to San José. Farewell dinner.
DAY 8 SAN JOSÉ (B)
Your tour ends after breakfast this morning at your hotel. Breakfast begins at 6:30 a.m. Transfers are provided to the Juan Santamaria International Airport (SJO) in San José, Costa Rica arriving at 5:00 a.m, 7:00 a.m, 9:00 a.m., and 11:00 a.m.