16 days in Costa Rica Itinerary

16 days in Costa Rica Itinerary

Created using Inspirock Costa Rica travel planner

Make it your trip
Fly
1
San Jose
— 1 night
Drive
2
Jaco
— 2 nights
Drive
3
Manuel Antonio
— 4 nights
Drive
4
Puerto Viejo de Talamanca
— 2 nights
Drive
5
La Fortuna de San Carlos
— 4 nights
Drive
6
Tamarindo
— 2 nights
Fly

S M T W T F S
14
15
16
17
18
19
20
21
22
23
24
25
26
27
28
29
30
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
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11

San Jose

— 1 night
A trip to San Jose, the capital, commercial center, and cultural hub of Costa Rica, gives you a chance to experience the lively atmosphere and rich cultural past of this vibrant country.
Start off your visit on the 20th (Sat): view the masterpieces at Riish and Toosh Afro Costa Rican Paintings and then get engrossed in the history at Museo Nacional De Costa Rica. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the 21st (Sun): explore the world behind art at Museo de Arte Costarricense, then pause for some serene contemplation at Santuario Nacional Nuestra Senora de Los Angeles, and then contemplate the long history of Ruins of the Church of Carthage.

To see ratings, other places to visit, photos, and more tourist information, refer to the San Jose trip planner.

Toronto, Canada to San Jose is an approximately 8.5-hour flight. You can also drive. Traveling from Toronto to San Jose, you'll gain 1 hour due to the time zone difference. Traveling from Toronto in November, things will get warmer in San Jose: highs are around 30°C and lows about 22°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 21st (Sun) to allow time to drive to Jaco.

Things to do in San Jose

Museums · Historic Sites · Shopping

Side Trips

Jaco

— 2 nights
A seaside resort town with plenty of entertaining distractions along its attractive coastline, Jaco has long been a major tourist destination on the central Pacific coast.
Start off your visit on the 22nd (Mon): take in the exciting artwork at Tico Pod Art House & Gifts, then take a pleasant ride with a tour on horseback, and then snap pictures at Tarcoles Bridge. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the 23rd (Tue): see Off-Road Tours, then make a trip to Mirador de Jaco, and then see majestic marine mammals with Costa Rica Dreams Sportfishing.

For ratings, maps, reviews, and tourist information, read our Jaco trip tool.

You can drive from San Jose to Jaco in 2 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus. Finish your sightseeing early on the 23rd (Tue) to allow enough time to drive to Manuel Antonio.

Things to do in Jaco

Outdoors · Tours · Wildlife · Museums

Side Trips

Manuel Antonio

— 4 nights
The rainforest meets the sea at Manuel Antonio National Park, a small but scenic natural preserve on the west coast of Costa Rica.
Get a sense of the local culture at Magic Ananda and The Captain's Booty. Get in touch with nature at Alturas Wildlife Sanctuary and Safari Adventures. Get out of town with these interesting Manuel Antonio side-trips: Uvita (Uvita Waterfall & Rancho La Merced National Wildlife Refuge). And it doesn't end there: relax and float downstream with a rafting and tubing tour, stroll around Parque Nahomi, and tour the pleasant surroundings at Playa Manuel Antonio.

For other places to visit, ratings, reviews, and other tourist information, read Manuel Antonio trip builder app.

You can drive from Jaco to Manuel Antonio in 1.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 27th (Sat) so you can go by car to Puerto Viejo de Talamanca.

Things to do in Manuel Antonio

Outdoors · Parks · Adventure · Tours

Side Trips

Puerto Viejo de Talamanca

— 2 nights

Walaba

Puerto Viejo de Talamanca offers a wealth of entertainment by the sea, attracting a lively international crowd of revelers while maintaining a bright and breezy coastal charm with a local feel.
Start off your visit on the 28th (Sun): tour the pleasant surroundings at Punta Uva Beach and then surround yourself with nature on a nature and wildlife tour. On your second day here, admire the natural beauty at Tree of Life Wildlife Rescue Center and Botanical Gardens and then stroll through Nature Observatorio.

To find ratings, reviews, other places to visit, and tourist information, you can read our Puerto Viejo de Talamanca trip planner.

Getting from Manuel Antonio to Puerto Viejo de Talamanca by car takes about 7 hours. Other options: take a bus; or take a bus. Finish your sightseeing early on the 29th (Mon) so you can drive to La Fortuna de San Carlos.

Things to do in Puerto Viejo de Talamanca

Parks · Wildlife · Outdoors · Beaches

Side Trips

La Fortuna de San Carlos

— 4 nights
Set against the backdrop of the imposing Arenal Volcano, La Fortuna de San Carlos offers visitors a chance to explore diverse natural landscapes and sample some delicious local produce.
Get some cultural insight at ChocoMuseo La Fortuna and Wood & Art Gallery. You'll explore and learn at Onirica Art Gallery and Galeria Estudio. Spend the 1st (Wed) spotting exotic species with a safari tour. There's still lots to do: let the river carry you with a rafting and tubing tour, take in the natural beauty of Paradise Hot Springs, trek along Natura Eco Park Costa Rica, and get interesting insight from Tours.

To see ratings, more things to do, photos, and tourist information, you can read our La Fortuna de San Carlos trip planner.

Traveling by car from Puerto Viejo de Talamanca to La Fortuna de San Carlos takes 5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of bus and taxi; or take a bus. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 3rd (Fri) early enough to drive to Tamarindo.

Things to do in La Fortuna de San Carlos

Outdoors · Tours · Parks · Wildlife

Tamarindo

— 2 nights
Surfing remains the main reason to take a trip to Tamarindo, as the beachside town is mostly known for its excellent waves.
Kick off your visit on the 4th (Sat): push the limits with an extreme tour and then wander the wide-open spaces of Pura Aventura.

For other places to visit, more things to do, and more tourist information, you can read our Tamarindo trip planner.

Traveling by car from La Fortuna de San Carlos to Tamarindo takes 4 hours. Alternatively, you can take a shuttle; or take a bus. December in Tamarindo sees daily highs of 32°C and lows of 32°C at night. On the 5th (Sun), wrap the sightseeing up by early afternoon so you can travel back home.

Things to do in Tamarindo

Outdoors · Tours · Spas

Side Trip

Costa Rica travel guide

4.5
Beaches · Nature & Parks · Zipline
Tiny in terms of land area, Costa Rica is astoundingly diverse when it comes to culture and natural attractions. In a country called "Rich Coast", it's no surprise most Costa Rica vacations dedicate at least a few days to picturesque Pacific and Caribbean beaches, ideal for water sports and relaxation. Few small countries offer such a range of landscapes, allowing tourists to observe towering volcanoes while soaking away their worries in a hot spring, or hike into dense rainforests in the morning and surf at a modern resort in the afternoon. A trip to Costa Rica also lets you discover pristine national parks, ensuring plenty of chances to view wildlife from the comfort of eco-friendly lodges packed with amenities even ardent nature lovers secretly desire.