33 days in Costa Rica Itinerary

33 days in Costa Rica Itinerary

Created using Inspirock Costa Rica trip planner

Make it your trip
Fly
1
San Jose
— 3 nights
Shuttle
2
Manuel Antonio
— 4 nights
Drive
3
La Fortuna de San Carlos
— 4 nights
Drive
4
Monteverde
— 5 nights
Drive
5
Quebrada Grande
— 3 nights
Drive
6
Tamarindo
— 4 nights
Drive
7
Nosara
— 4 nights
Drive
8
Tortuguero
— 1 night
Drive
9
Puerto Viejo de Talamanca
— 3 nights
Drive to Limon International Airport, Fly to London Heathrow Airport

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San Jose

— 3 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.
Venture out of the city with trips to Jardin Botanico Lankester (in Cartago) and Jardins da Cachoeira de La Paz (in Vara Blanca). Next up on the itinerary: explore the wealth of natural beauty at Irazu Volcano National Park, take an in-depth tour of Museo Nacional De Costa Rica, take in the exciting artwork at Riish and Toosh Afro Costa Rican Paintings, and walk around Parque La Sabana.

For maps, more things to do, where to stay, and tourist information, refer to the San Jose trip planner.

London, UK to San Jose is an approximately 15-hour flight. The time zone difference when traveling from London to San Jose is minus 6 hours. Traveling from London in December, expect San Jose to be much warmer, temps between 30°C and 22°C. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 13th (Sun) so you can go by car to Manuel Antonio.

Things to do in San Jose

Parks · Museums · Nature · Tours

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 out of town with these interesting Manuel Antonio side-trips: Dominical (Alturas Wildlife Sanctuary & Mama Toucan's Natural and Organic Food Store) and Rancho La Merced National Wildlife Refuge (in Uvita). There's still lots to do: kick back and relax at Playa Manuel Antonio, relax and float downstream with a rafting and tubing tour, walk around Manuel Antonio National Park, and relax and rejuvenate at Yoga con Cyn.

To find other places to visit, maps, more things to do, and tourist information, refer to the Manuel Antonio travel planner.

You can drive from San Jose to Manuel Antonio in 3 hours. Other options are to take a shuttle; or take a bus. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 17th (Thu) so you can go by car to La Fortuna de San Carlos.

Things to do in Manuel Antonio

Outdoors · Parks · Tours · Adventure

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.
La Fortuna de San Carlos is known for nature, adventure, and parks. Your plan includes some of its best attractions: witness a stunning natural landmark at Tabacon Hot Springs, get interesting insight from Tours, let the river carry you with a rafting and tubing tour, and explore the striking landscape of Arenal Volcano.

To see maps, other places to visit, photos, and more tourist information, you can read our La Fortuna de San Carlos online trip planner.

You can drive from Manuel Antonio to La Fortuna de San Carlos in 4.5 hours. Other options are to take a shuttle; or take a bus. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 21st (Mon) to allow time to drive to Monteverde.

Things to do in La Fortuna de San Carlos

Parks · Nature · Outdoors · Tours

Side Trip

Monteverde

— 5 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: stroll through Monteverde Cloud Forest Biological Reserve, experience rural life at El Trapiche Tour, take in nature's colorful creations at Monteverde Orchid Garden, and savor a delicious cup with Don Juan Tours.

For traveler tips, reviews, where to stay, and tourist information, you can read our Monteverde trip planner.

Drive from La Fortuna de San Carlos to Monteverde in 3.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. In December in Monteverde, expect temperatures between 32°C during the day and 32°C at night. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 26th (Sat) to allow time to travel to Quebrada Grande.

Things to do in Monteverde

Parks · Wildlife · Tours · Adventure

Quebrada Grande

— 3 nights
Keep things going the next day: witness a stunning natural landmark at Middle Earth Thermal Springs.

To see traveler tips, where to stay, maps, and more tourist information, read Quebrada Grande vacation planner.

You can drive from Monteverde to Quebrada Grande in 2 hours. In December in Quebrada Grande, expect temperatures between 32°C during the day and 32°C at night. On the 29th (Tue), wrap the sightseeing up by early afternoon so you can travel to Tamarindo.

Things to do in Quebrada Grande

Nature · Parks

Side Trip

Highlights from your trip

Tamarindo

— 4 nights
Surfing remains the main reason to take a trip to Tamarindo, as the beachside town is mostly known for its excellent waves.
Get out of town with these interesting Tamarindo side-trips: Playa Conchal (Garra de Leon Golf Course & Playa Conchal) and Diamante Eco Adventure Park (in Playa Matapalo). Next up on the itinerary: kick back and relax at Tamarindo Beach, get in on the family fun at Black Stallion Eco Park & Estates, stroll through Monkey Park, and relax and rejuvenate at some of the best spas.

For maps, reviews, photos, and tourist information, read Tamarindo online tour itinerary planner.

You can drive from Quebrada Grande to Tamarindo in 3 hours. In December in Tamarindo, expect temperatures between 32°C during the day and 32°C at night. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 2nd (Sat) to allow time to drive to Nosara.

Things to do in Tamarindo

Outdoors · Parks · Beaches · Tours

Side Trips

Nosara

— 4 nights
Along with its agricultural and fishing heritage, Nosara stands as one of the oldest expatriate communities in the country.
Venture out of the city with trips to Playa Samara (Barrigona Beach, Samara Beach, &more). There's lots more to do: kick back and relax at Playa Guiones, trot along with a tour on horseback, have some family-friendly fun at Nosara Escape, and stroll through Sibu Wildlife Sanctuary.

To find other places to visit, reviews, maps, and more tourist information, you can read our Nosara trip builder website.

Traveling by car from Tamarindo to Nosara takes 2 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a shuttle; or take a bus. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 6th (Wed) to allow time to drive to Tortuguero.

Things to do in Nosara

Outdoors · Parks · Beaches · Tours

Side Trip

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.
Start off your visit on the 7th (Thu): explore the striking landscape of Tortuguero National Park.

For maps, ratings, traveler tips, and more tourist information, you can read our Tortuguero itinerary planner.

You can drive from Nosara to Tortuguero in 7.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of bus and taxi. January in Tortuguero sees daily highs of 33°C and lows of 24°C at night. Finish your sightseeing early on the 7th (Thu) to allow enough time to drive to Puerto Viejo de Talamanca.

Things to do in Tortuguero

Nature · Parks
Highlights from your trip

Puerto Viejo de Talamanca

— 3 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.
Spend the 8th (Fri) exploring nature at Cahuita National Park. And it doesn't end there: enjoy the sand and surf at Puerto Viejo Beach, tour the pleasant surroundings at Playa Cocles, and admire the natural beauty at Finca La Isla.

To find other places to visit, photos, traveler tips, and more tourist information, use the Puerto Viejo de Talamanca online trip planner.

Traveling by car from Tortuguero to Puerto Viejo de Talamanca takes 4.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a shuttle; or take a bus. Cap off your sightseeing on the 10th (Sun) early enough to travel back home.

Things to do in Puerto Viejo de Talamanca

Parks · Beaches · Outdoors · Nature

Side Trip

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.