19 days in Costa Rica Itinerary

19 days in Costa Rica Itinerary

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Route & dates

19 days in Costa Rica Itinerary

Start: Mexico City
+2
Fly + Bus + Shuttle:  9 h 30 min
1
La Fortuna de San Carlos
— 2 nights
Drive:  4 h 15 min
2
Manuel Antonio
— 1 night
Drive:  3 h 45 min
3
Monteverde
— 2 nights
Drive:  1 h 30 min
4
Quebrada Grande
— 3 nights
Drive:  2 h 30 min
5
Tamarindo
— 4 nights
Drive:  4 h 15 min
6
Santa Teresa
— 2 nights
+3
Taxi + Fly + Bus + Shuttle:  7 h 45 min
7
Puerto Viejo de Talamanca
— 3 nights
+2
Shuttle + Bus + Fly:  11 h 30 min
End: Mexico City

2
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.
Visiting Tabacon Hot Springs and Arenal Natura Ecological Park will get you outdoors. Spend the 19th (Mon) among the fascinating landscape of Arenal Volcano (Volcan Arenal).

To find maps, other places to visit, photos, and other tourist information, read our La Fortuna de San Carlos tour planner.

Use the Route module to find suitable travel options from Mexico City, Mexico to La Fortuna de San Carlos. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 19th (Mon) early enough to fly to Manuel Antonio National Park.

Things to do in La Fortuna de San Carlos

Parks Nature Spas

Side Trip

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

1
night
Manuel Antonio

Manuel Antonio
The rainforest meets the sea at Manuel Antonio National Park, a small but scenic natural preserve on the west coast of Costa Rica.
Start off your visit on the 20th (Tue): explore the striking landscape of Parque Nacional Manuel Antonio.

To find photos, where to stay, reviews, and other tourist information, read Manuel Antonio National Park sightseeing planner.

Getting from La Fortuna de San Carlos to Manuel Antonio National Park by flight takes about 1.5 hours. Other options: drive; or take a bus. Expect a daytime high around 30°C in December, and nighttime lows around 22°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 20th (Tue) to allow time to drive to Monteverde.

Things to do in Manuel Antonio

Outdoors Tours Wildlife

2
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.
Start off your visit on the 21st (Wed): identify plant and animal life at Monteverde Cloud Forest Biological Reserve. On your second day here, stop by Souvenir Rosewood and then whizz through the canopy at some of the top local zipline courses and adventure parks.

To see reviews, more things to do, maps, and more tourist information, read Monteverde tour planner.

You can drive from Manuel Antonio National Park to Monteverde in 3 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus. Finish your sightseeing early on the 22nd (Thu) to allow enough time to travel to Quebrada Grande.

Things to do in Monteverde

Wildlife Parks Tours
Highlights from your plan
Zipline
Souvenir Rosewood-Info Center ©
Souvenir Rosewood-Info Center

3
nights
Quebrada Grande

Quebrada Grande ©
Take a break from the city and head to Llanos de Cortez Waterfall and Parque Nacional Volcan Rincon de la Vieja. Get a sense of the local culture at El Viejo Wetlands and Miravalles Volcano. Step out of Quebrada Grande to go to La Cruz and see Nature & Wildlife Tours, which is approximately 40 minutes away.

To find photos, traveler tips, reviews, and more tourist information, you can read our Quebrada Grande trip itinerery planner.

The Route module can help you plan travel from Monteverde to Quebrada Grande. December in Quebrada Grande sees daily highs of 38°C and lows of 24°C at night. Finish your sightseeing early on the 25th (Sun) so you can travel to Tamarindo.

Things to do in Quebrada Grande

Parks Nature Trails

Side Trips

Area de Conservacion Guanacaste, Souvenirs La gran Nicoya
Highlights from your plan
Hacienda El Viejo Wetlands ©
Hacienda El Viejo Wetlands
Miravalles Volcano ©
Miravalles Volcano
Souvenirs La gran Nicoya ©
Souvenirs La gran Nicoya

4
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.
Get in touch with nature at Tamarindo Beach and Playa Avellana. Visit Playa Conchal and Nosara Beach (Playa Guiones) for some beach relaxation. Explore the numerous day-trip ideas around Tamarindo: Eskina Skate Parq (in Nosara) and Playa Hermosa (in Playa Hermosa).

For other places to visit, photos, ratings, and tourist information, go to the Tamarindo online itinerary creator.

Use the Route module to find suitable travel options from Quebrada Grande to Tamarindo. December in Tamarindo sees daily highs of 38°C and lows of 24°C at night. Cap off your sightseeing on the 29th (Thu) early enough to go by car to Santa Teresa.

Things to do in Tamarindo

Outdoors Beaches Parks

Side Trips

Nosara, Playa Conchal, Playa Hermosa, Scuba & Snorkeling
Highlights from your plan
Tamarindo Beach ©
Tamarindo Beach
Playa Conchal ©
Playa Conchal
Playa Guiones ©
Playa Guiones

2
nights
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 30th (Fri): kick back and relax at Playa Hermosa, then stroll through Playa Santa Teresa, and then stop by Tica Surf Bikinis. On the 31st (Sat), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: soothe aching muscles at some of the top local wellness centers.

To find reviews, photos, more things to do, and other tourist information, refer to the Santa Teresa holiday planner.

You can drive from Tamarindo to Santa Teresa in 3.5 hours. Another option is to do a combination of bus and taxi. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 31st (Sat) to allow enough time to travel to Puerto Viejo de Talamanca.

Things to do in Santa Teresa

Beaches Parks Outdoors
Highlights from your plan
Playa Santa Teresa ©
Playa Santa Teresa
Playa Hermosa ©
Playa Hermosa
Spas & Wellness

3
nights
Puerto Viejo de Talamanca

Puerto Viejo de Talamanca ©
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.
We've included these beaches for you: Puerto Viejo Beach and Playa Chiquita. Escape the urban bustle at Cahuita National Park and Playa Cocles. There's more to do: look for gifts at Talamanca Family Art.

To see photos, traveler tips, more things to do, and tourist information, refer to the Puerto Viejo de Talamanca trip itinerary maker.

Getting from Santa Teresa to Puerto Viejo de Talamanca by combination of bus and flight takes about 7 hours. Other options: drive. You'll lose 1 hour traveling from Santa Teresa to Puerto Viejo de Talamanca due to the time zone difference. Expect a daytime high around 10°C in January, and nighttime lows around 10°C. Cap off your sightseeing on the 3rd (Tue) early enough to travel back home.

Things to do in Puerto Viejo de Talamanca

Parks Beaches Outdoors

Side Trips

Cahuita National Park, Talamanca Family Art
Highlights from your plan
Puerto Viejo Beach ©
Puerto Viejo Beach
Cahuita National Park ©
Cahuita National Park
Playa Cocles ©
Playa Cocles

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