In this 9-day package you will get to experience the three main highlights of Costa Rica – the Arenal Volcano, the cloud forests of Monteverde, and the beautiful tropical beaches & rainforest in Manuel Antonio. Your adventure begins with three nights in the “adventure capital” of Costa Rica with a stay in a cozy hot spring hotel at the base of Arenal Volcano. Spend all day exploring the rainforest or doing one of the many adventure tours Arenal is famous for, then spend your free time relaxing in the therapeutic thermal hot springs. Next, you will to the Monteverde Cloud Forest, stopping along the way to see how Costa Rica’s famous coffee is made. In Monteverde you will enjoy guided hikes of the lush mountains in search for the mystical quetzal and many other birds & mammals that call the cloud forest home. End your adventure with three nights along Costa Rica’s beautiful Central Pacific Coast and the popular beach town of Manuel Antonio. Here the tropical rain forest meets the sea as you can enjoy amazing flora, fauna, and beaches all in the same spot.
San Jose International Airport (SJO)
Trip may include activities like jungle walks, hiking, boat rides and stairs.
Fly into Juan Santamaría International Airport (SJO) where one of our local airport representatives will meet you before immigration holding a sign with your name on it. They will guide you through the immigration process and out to your waiting private driver. Enjoy the rolling green hills and mountain views as you make your way due north to the Arenal Volcano. You will check into hotels and can enjoy the rest of the evening in the thermal hot springs that are right on-site at your hotel.
Today you will experience two of the most iconic sites in the Arenal area – the hanging bridges and the picturesque La Fortuna Waterfall. Start your day with an early morning guided tour of the famous hanging bridges to get a bird’s eye view of the rainforest. The suspension bridges span the canopy of the rainforest to give you a unique and up-close experience to the incredible flora and fauna of the region. Next, you will head to the La Fortuna Waterfall, which can be reached by a gentle horseback ride through back country for the adventurous or by van for greater ease. The 200 ft waterfall is always ready for pictures and if you are brave enough, a cool refreshing dip in the pool below.
Enjoy a calm river safari float along the scenic Penas Blancas River as you search for wildlife. With the help of your expert guide’s trained eye, search for monkeys, lizards, crocodiles, river otters, and a large variety of tropical birds including toucans. For those that prefer a more adventurous day on the river, class II-III and class III-IV whitewater rafting trips are also available.
Today you will travel from the Arenal Volcano over to the Monteverde Cloud Forest, but we will take you the scenic way to make the most of your time in Costa Rica. Along the way stop at Don Juan coffee farm to learn about the coffee bean harvest and the roasting process. For those with a sweet tooth, you will also see how cacao fruit is processed into chocolate with an opportunity to sample different chocolate treats.
Wake up early for a guided nature and birdwatching tour through the Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve. The reserve spans over 26,000 acres and is home to an incredible 2,500 plant species (including a huge variety of orchids), 100 species of mammals, over 400 different birds, over 100 species of reptiles and amphibians, and literally thousands of different insects. Your trained naturalist guide will help you spot, identify, and learn more about the incredible biodiversity in this unique region of Central America. The afternoon will be yours to relax at the hotel or explore town, then after dinner you’ll put your boots back on, grab a flashlight, and head back into the cloud forest for a stimulating night hike. Many of the most unique animals and insects are only spotted at night, so this tour gives you a unique perspective on life in the cloud forest.
After breakfast you will leave the cool cloud forest behind and head down to the Pacific Ocean on a journey through Costa Rica’s countryside. Ask your driver to stop at any time to stretch your legs, have lunch, or take photos. At the halfway point on this drive another ‘must see’ are the huge crocodiles found at the famous Tarcoles River. You will arrive at your hotel in Manuel Antonio in time to grab a drink and find a spot to enjoy a beautiful Pacific sunset.
This morning you will enjoy a guided tour of Costa Rica’s most visited national park, Manuel Antonio. At just 26,000 acres the Manuel Antonio National Park is also Costa Rica’s smallest, but it is home to an astonishing amount of flora, fauna, and three of the most pristine beaches in the country. After your guided tour ends feel free to stay inside the park and enjoy the beaches without the large crowds you will find on the public beach.
Enjoy your last day in Costa Rica! You have enjoyed an action-packed itinerary, so this day is yours to do as you please. Relax, sleep in, and enjoy the pool and nearby beaches or you have the option to set up yet another adventure if you are not the “sit still” type. Adventure tours in the include zip-lines, ATVs, horseback riding, and rafting while calmer, nature-based tours include kayaking through mangroves, a local spice farm, and a calm catamaran cruise along the coast.
Take a 25-minute domestic flight from Quepos to San Jose for your international flight home from the SJO Airport.