17 days in Costa Rica Itinerary

17 days in Costa Rica Itinerary

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Route & dates

17 days in Costa Rica Itinerary

Start: Ljubljana
Fly + Drive:  28 h
1
Tamarindo
— 3 nights
Drive:  1 h 30 min
2
Playa Samara
— 2 nights
Drive:  1 h 45 min
3
Santa Teresa
— 1 night
+3
Bus + Ferry + Foot + Shuttle:  3 h 30 min
4
Monteverde
— 4 nights
Drive:  2 h
5
La Fortuna de San Carlos
— 5 nights
Fly:  28 h
End: Ljubljana

3
nights
Tamarindo

Tamarindo ©
Surfing remains the main reason to take a trip to Tamarindo, as the beachside town is mostly known for its excellent waves.
On the 19th (Sun), stroll through Playa Conchal, enjoy the sand and surf at Tamarindo Beach, and then look for gifts at Lydia Beech Art. On the 20th (Mon), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: get in on the family fun at Black Stallion Eco Park & Estates and then enjoy the sand and surf at Playa Avellana.

To find traveler tips, where to stay, ratings, and more tourist information, refer to the Tamarindo trip itinerary builder.

Ljubljana, Slovenia to Tamarindo is an approximately 28-hour combination of car and flight. Traveling from Ljubljana to Tamarindo, you'll gain 7 hours due to the time zone difference. Traveling from Ljubljana in February, things will get much warmer in Tamarindo: highs are around 39°C and lows about 25°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 21st (Tue) early enough to take a bus to Playa Samara.

Things to do in Tamarindo

Parks Outdoors Beaches

Side Trips

Playa Conchal, Black Stallion Eco Park & Estates
Highlights from your plan
Black Stallion Eco Park & Estates ©
Black Stallion Eco Park & Estates
Playa Conchal ©
Playa Conchal
Tamarindo Beach ©
Tamarindo Beach

2
nights
Playa Samara

Playa Samara ©
A beach town with just enough development to be comfortable for families accustomed to the trappings of modern life, Playa Samara has the resorts you'd expect to find in such a scenic area, but they don't hinder the relaxing atmosphere.
Kick off your visit on the 21st (Tue): tour the pleasant surroundings at Samara Beach and then enjoy the sand and surf at Barrigona Beach. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the next day: stroll through Nosara Beach (Playa Guiones) and then look for all kinds of wild species at Nosara Refuge for Wildlife.

For photos, traveler tips, reviews, and tourist information, read our Playa Samara vacation trip planner.

Traveling by bus from Tamarindo to Playa Samara takes 1.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or drive. In February, daily temperatures in Playa Samara can reach 39°C, while at night they dip to 25°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 23rd (Thu) to allow enough time to drive to Santa Teresa.

Things to do in Playa Samara

Parks Outdoors Beaches

Side Trip

Nosara
Highlights from your plan
Playa Guiones ©
Playa Guiones
Samara Beach ©
Samara Beach
Barrigona Beach ©
Barrigona Beach

1
night
Santa Teresa

Santa Teresa ©
A coastal getaway popular with surfers and young travelers, Santa Teresa spreads out from the beach and the main coastal road to a ring of newer developments on the surrounding hills.
Kick off your visit on the 23rd (Thu): kick back and relax at Playa Hermosa and then enjoy the sand and surf at Playa Santa Teresa. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the next day: stop by Tica Surf Bikinis and then admire the sheer force of Montezuma Falls.

To see where to stay, photos, more things to do, and other tourist information, read our Santa Teresa trip builder.

You can drive from Playa Samara to Santa Teresa in 2 hours. Another option is to drive. Cap off your sightseeing on the 24th (Fri) early enough to go by car to Monteverde.

Things to do in Santa Teresa

Parks Outdoors Beaches

Side Trip

Montezuma Falls
Highlights from your plan
Playa Santa Teresa ©
Playa Santa Teresa
Playa Hermosa ©
Playa Hermosa
Montezuma Falls ©
Montezuma Falls

4
nights
Monteverde

Monteverde is all about natural attractions, not surprising for an eco-tourism hotspot known for its cloud forests and rich diversity of animal life.
Family-friendly places like Monteverde Cloud Forest Biological Reserve and Curi Cancha Reserve will thrill your kids. Get out of town with these interesting Monteverde side-trips: Monteverde Orchid Garden (in Santa Elena) and Viento Fresco Waterfall (in Tilaran).

For reviews, other places to visit, more things to do, and more tourist information, read Monteverde vacation planner.

Drive from Santa Teresa to Monteverde in 3.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of taxi, ferry, and shuttle. Cap off your sightseeing on the 28th (Tue) early enough to go by car to La Fortuna de San Carlos.

Things to do in Monteverde

Parks Wildlife Nature

Side Trip

Viento Fresco Waterfall
Highlights from your plan
Zipline
The Bat Jungle ©
The Bat Jungle

5
nights
La Fortuna de San Carlos

La Fortuna de San Carlos ©
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.
Kids will appreciate attractions like Proyecto Asis and Arenal Natura Ecological Park. Spend the 4th (Sat) among the fascinating landscape of Arenal Volcano (Volcan Arenal).

For other places to visit, where to stay, and tourist information, read La Fortuna de San Carlos travel planner.

Traveling by car from Monteverde to La Fortuna de San Carlos takes 2 hours. Alternatively, you can drive. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 5th (Sun) to allow enough time to travel back home.

Things to do in La Fortuna de San Carlos

Parks Nature Outdoors

Side Trip

Arenal Volcano National Park
Highlights from your plan
Tabacon Hot Springs ©
Tabacon Hot Springs
River Rafting & Tubing
Arenal Volcano
Arenal Volcano

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