31 days in Costa Rica Itinerary

31 days in Costa Rica Itinerary

Created using Inspirock Costa Rica trip itinerary planner

Make it your trip
Fly
1
San Jose
— 4 nights
Drive
2
Jaco
— 2 nights
Drive
3
Manuel Antonio
— 3 nights
Drive
4
Drake Bay
— 3 nights
Drive
5
Puerto Viejo de Talamanca
— 2 nights
Drive
6
Tortuguero
— 1 night
Drive
7
La Fortuna de San Carlos
— 5 nights
Drive
8
Area de Conservacion Guanacaste
— 2 nights
Drive
9
Tamarindo
— 2 nights
Drive
10
Playa Samara
— 2 nights
Drive
11
Monteverde
— 3 nights
Taxi to Atenas, Fly to Tel Aviv

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San Jose

— 4 nights
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.
Get out of town with these interesting San Jose side-trips: Jardins da Cachoeira de La Paz (in Vara Blanca) and Santuario Nacional Nuestra Senora de Los Angeles (in Cartago). And it doesn't end there: explore the wealth of natural beauty at Irazu Volcano National Park, view the masterpieces at Riish and Toosh Afro Costa Rican Paintings, pause for some serene contemplation at Iglesia La Soledad, and admire the masterpieces at Museo de Arte Costarricense.

For traveler tips, ratings, maps, and more tourist information, read our San Jose trip maker app.

Tel Aviv, Israel to San Jose is an approximately 21.5-hour flight. The time zone difference when traveling from Tel Aviv to San Jose is minus 8 hours. Traveling from Tel Aviv in January, things will get a bit warmer in San Jose: highs are around 30°C and lows about 21°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 20th (Wed) early enough to drive to Jaco.

Things to do in San Jose

Museums · Parks · Nature · Tours

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 21st (Thu): skim along the rocks with a canyoning and rapelling tour, take a memorable tour with Tours, and then make a trip to Mirador de Jaco. Here are some ideas for day two: kick your exploration up a notch at some of the top local zipline courses and adventure parks, take a memorable tour with Tours, then look for gifts at Fruity Monkey Poop, and finally snap pictures at Tarcoles Bridge.

For more things to do, photos, where to stay, and tourist information, go to the Jaco road trip planning site.

Drive from San Jose to Jaco in 2 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 22nd (Fri) early enough to drive to Manuel Antonio.

Things to do in Jaco

Tours · Outdoors · Adventure · Shopping

Side Trip

Manuel Antonio

— 3 nights
The rainforest meets the sea at Manuel Antonio National Park, a small but scenic natural preserve on the west coast of Costa Rica.
Explore the numerous day-trip ideas around Manuel Antonio: Uvita (Rancho La Merced National Wildlife Refuge & Parque Nacional Marino Ballena). Next up on the itinerary: enjoy the sand and surf at Playa Manuel Antonio, walk around Parque Nahomi, take a memorable tour with Tours, and surround yourself with nature on a nature and wildlife tour.

To find other places to visit, maps, more things to do, and other tourist information, read Manuel Antonio trip itinerary maker site.

Drive from Jaco to Manuel Antonio in 1.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus. Finish your sightseeing early on the 25th (Mon) so you can drive to Drake Bay.

Things to do in Manuel Antonio

Outdoors · Parks · Beaches · Wildlife

Side Trips

Drake Bay

— 3 nights
Change things up with a short trip to Corcovado National Park in Carate (about 1h 10 min away). Spend a day of island exploring on the 27th (Wed) at Cano Island.

To find other places to visit, photos, traveler tips, and other tourist information, use the Drake Bay online route planner.

Drive from Manuel Antonio to Drake Bay in 4 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of bus and ferry; or take a bus. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 28th (Thu) early enough to drive to Puerto Viejo de Talamanca.

Things to do in Drake Bay

Parks · Nature · Wildlife · Tours

Side Trip

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.
Kick off your visit on the 29th (Fri): explore the striking landscape of Cahuita National Park. Keep things going the next day: surround yourself with nature on a nature and wildlife tour, admire the natural beauty at Finca La Isla, and then tour the pleasant surroundings at Gandoca - Manzanillo Wildlife Refuge.

To see maps, more things to do, ratings, and more tourist information, go to the Puerto Viejo de Talamanca journey maker tool.

Traveling by car from Drake Bay to Puerto Viejo de Talamanca takes 7.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus; or do a combination of ferry and bus. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 30th (Sat) early enough to drive to Tortuguero.

Things to do in Puerto Viejo de Talamanca

Parks · Nature · Wildlife · Tours

Side Trips

Tortuguero

— 1 night

Costa Rica's Amazon

One of Costa Rica's least accessible destinations, Tortuguero sits within an eponymous national park and remains accessible only by plane or boat.
Kick off your visit on the 31st (Sun): explore the striking landscape of Tortuguero National Park.

For ratings, traveler tips, where to stay, and tourist information, go to the Tortuguero sightseeing planner.

Traveling by car from Puerto Viejo de Talamanca to Tortuguero takes 4.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a shuttle; or take a bus. In January in Tortuguero, expect temperatures between 33°C during the day and 24°C at night. Finish your sightseeing early on the 31st (Sun) so you can drive to La Fortuna de San Carlos.

Things to do in Tortuguero

Parks · Nature
Highlights from your trip

La Fortuna de San Carlos

— 5 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.
La Fortuna de San Carlos is known for nature, adventure, and parks. Your plan includes some of its best attractions: take in the natural beauty of Tabacon Hot Springs, get impressive views of Arenal Volcano, stroll through La Fortuna Waterfall, and take a pleasant ride with a tour on horseback.

For maps, photos, ratings, and more tourist information, read La Fortuna de San Carlos day trip planning site.

Drive from Tortuguero to La Fortuna de San Carlos in 3.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a shuttle; or do a combination of taxi and bus. Finish your sightseeing early on the 5th (Fri) so you can travel to Area de Conservacion Guanacaste.

Things to do in La Fortuna de San Carlos

Parks · Nature · Tours · Outdoors

Side Trip

Area de Conservacion Guanacaste

— 2 nights
On the 6th (Sat), witness the site of a historic battle at Parque Nacional Santa Rosa. On the 7th (Sun), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: tour the pleasant surroundings at Junquillal Bay Wildlife Refuge and then tour the pleasant surroundings at Hacienda El Viejo Wetlands.

For where to stay, photos, maps, and tourist information, you can read our Area de Conservacion Guanacaste trip itinerary planner.

Traveling by car from La Fortuna de San Carlos to Area de Conservacion Guanacaste takes 3.5 hours. Cap off your sightseeing on the 7th (Sun) early enough to go by car to Tamarindo.

Things to do in Area de Conservacion Guanacaste

Parks · Nature · Historic Sites · Wildlife

Side Trip

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.
On the 8th (Mon), tour the pleasant surroundings at Playa Conchal and then get a taste of life in the country at Pura Aventura. On your second day here, get interesting insight from Tours, kick back and relax at Tamarindo Beach, and then look for gifts at Azul Profundo Boutique.

For maps, more things to do, ratings, and other tourist information, use the Tamarindo trip builder tool.

Getting from Area de Conservacion Guanacaste to Tamarindo by car takes about 2.5 hours. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 9th (Tue) early enough to drive to Playa Samara.

Things to do in Tamarindo

Outdoors · Parks · Beaches · Tours

Side Trip

Playa Samara

— 2 nights
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 10th (Wed): take in the exciting artwork at MAEL's ABSTRACT ART GALLERY, then tour the pleasant surroundings at Playa Guiones, and then stroll through Sibu Wildlife Sanctuary. Here are some ideas for day two: kick back and relax at Barrigona Beach and then stroll through Samara Beach.

To find traveler tips, other places to visit, ratings, and other tourist information, read our Playa Samara travel route website.

Traveling by car from Tamarindo to Playa Samara takes 2 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus. Finish your sightseeing early on the 11th (Thu) so you can drive to Monteverde.

Things to do in Playa Samara

Parks · Beaches · Outdoors · Wildlife

Side Trip

Monteverde

— 3 nights
Monteverde is all about natural attractions, not surprising for an eco-tourism hotspot known for its cloud forests and rich diversity of animal life.
Monteverde is known for adventure, parks, and nightlife. Your plan includes some of its best attractions: tour the pleasant surroundings at Monteverde Cloud Forest Biological Reserve, admire the natural beauty at Monteverde Orchid Garden, kick your exploration up a notch at some of the top local zipline courses and adventure parks, and take in the views from Santa Elena Skywalk.

To find traveler tips, other places to visit, where to stay, and more tourist information, read Monteverde itinerary app.

Getting from Playa Samara to Monteverde by car takes about 3 hours. Other options: take a bus. Finish your sightseeing early on the 14th (Sun) to allow enough time to travel back home.

Things to do in Monteverde

Parks · Wildlife · Tours · Adventure

Costa Rica travel guide

4.4
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.