9 days in Costa Rica Itinerary

9 days in Costa Rica Itinerary

Created using Inspirock Costa Rica trip itinerary planner

Make it your trip
Fly
1
Tamarindo
— 1 night
Drive
2
Playa Samara
— 1 night
Drive
3
Santa Teresa
— 1 night
Ferry
4
Manuel Antonio
— 1 night
Drive
5
Uvita
— 1 night
Drive
6
La Fortuna de San Carlos
— 3 nights
Shuttle to San Jose, Fly to Newark

S M T W T F S
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17
18
19
20

Tamarindo

— 1 night
Surfing remains the main reason to take a trip to Tamarindo, as the beachside town is mostly known for its excellent waves.
Your day by day itinerary now includes Pininos Adventures. Kick off your visit on the 7th (Sun): take a memorable tour with Pininos Adventures and then kick back and relax at Tamarindo Beach. On your second day here, explore the activities along Potrero Beach, then push the limits with an extreme tour, then see Off-Road Tours, and finally indulge in some personalized pampering at some of the best spas.

To see photos, other places to visit, more things to do, and more tourist information, read our Tamarindo journey planner.

New York City, USA to Tamarindo is an approximately 9.5-hour flight. You can also drive. Traveling from New York City to Tamarindo, you'll gain 1 hour due to the time zone difference. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 8th (Mon) to allow time to drive to Playa Samara.

Things to do in Tamarindo

Outdoors · Tours · Parks · Beaches

Side Trips

Playa Samara

— 1 night
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.
Start off your visit on the 9th (Tue): enjoy the sand and surf at Samara Beach, take a memorable tour with Tours, relax and rejuvenate at some of the best spas, then kick back and relax at Playa Carrillo, and finally enjoy the sand and surf at Puerto Carrillo.

To find other places to visit, ratings, and tourist information, you can read our Playa Samara vacation maker app.

Traveling by car from Tamarindo to Playa Samara takes 2 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus. Finish your sightseeing early on the 9th (Tue) to allow enough time to drive to Santa Teresa.

Things to do in Playa Samara

Outdoors · Parks · Beaches · Spas

Side Trips

Santa Teresa

— 1 night
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 10th (Wed): kick back and relax at Playa Hermosa, then soothe aching muscles at some of the top local wellness centers, then enjoy the sand and surf at Playa Carmen, and finally glide peacefully along the water with some of the best stand-up paddleboarding in the area.

For where to stay, reviews, more things to do, and tourist information, refer to the Santa Teresa travel route planner.

Traveling by car from Playa Samara to Santa Teresa takes 3.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 10th (Wed) to allow time to ride a ferry to Manuel Antonio.

Things to do in Santa Teresa

Outdoors · Parks · Beaches · Tours

Manuel Antonio

— 1 night
The rainforest meets the sea at Manuel Antonio National Park, a small but scenic natural preserve on the west coast of Costa Rica.
Kick off your visit on the 11th (Thu): get interesting insight from Tours, then indulge in some personalized pampering at some of the best spas, then tour the pleasant surroundings at Playa Espadilla Norte, and finally take a memorable tour with Tours.

To see maps, traveler tips, photos, and other tourist information, use the Manuel Antonio online trip itinerary maker.

Getting from Santa Teresa to Manuel Antonio by ferry takes about 5 hours. Other options: do a combination of bus and ferry; or drive. Cap off your sightseeing on the 11th (Thu) early enough to go by car to Uvita.

Things to do in Manuel Antonio

Outdoors · Tours · Wildlife · Parks

Side Trip

Uvita

— 1 night
Ideal for visitors looking to escape Costa Rica's busy beaches, Uvita offers a serene atmosphere and plenty of uncrowded sand for a leisurely vacation.
Start off your visit on the 12th (Fri): enjoy the sand and surf at Uvita Beach, admire the sheer force of Uvita Waterfall, then tour the pleasant surroundings at Alturas Wildlife Sanctuary, then glide through the air with a parasailing or paragliding tour, and finally tour the pleasant surroundings at Playa Ventanas.

To find reviews and other tourist information, read our Uvita trip itinerary maker.

You can drive from Manuel Antonio to Uvita in 1.5 hours. Other options are to take a bus; or take a bus. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 12th (Fri) early enough to drive to La Fortuna de San Carlos.

Things to do in Uvita

Parks · Outdoors · Beaches · Nature

Side Trips

La Fortuna de San Carlos

— 3 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.
Start off your visit on the 13th (Sat): get a new perspective on things with Boat Tours & Water Sports, then admire the sheer force of La Fortuna Waterfall, then view the masterpieces at Wood & Art Gallery, and finally get impressive views of Cerro Chato (Chato Volcano). Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the 14th (Sun): witness a stunning natural landmark at Los Lagos Hot Springs, then hike along Natura Eco Park Costa Rica, then take in the natural beauty of Paradise Hot Springs, and finally witness a stunning natural landmark at Ecotermales Fortuna.

For other places to visit and other tourist information, refer to the La Fortuna de San Carlos online trip itinerary maker.

Getting from Uvita to La Fortuna de San Carlos by car takes about 5.5 hours. Other options: do a combination of bus and car; or take a bus. You will have some time to spend on the 15th (Mon) before leaving for home.

Things to do in La Fortuna de San Carlos

Parks · Nature · Outdoors · Tours

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.