DAY 1: ARRIVE IN SAN JOSE –
Arrive in San Jose’s Juan Santamaría International Airport. Upon clearing immigration and customs, exit the airport and meet your driver who will be waiting for you. Board the van for the 20 minute drive to San Jose. Check-in at a standard room at KC San José Hotel
DAY 2: COMBO TOUR POAS VOLCANO / DOKA COFFE TOUR & LA PAZ WATERFALL GARDENS.
We will first drive you through the city of Alajuela passing by the Agriculture Monument, the Monument to Juan Santamaria and the famous Mango Park. On the way to the volcano we will visit Doka Coffee Estate for a delicious breakfast and a coffee tour, in an actual coffee plantation where we will learn about the ancient techniques used by the experts to produce one of the best coffees in Costa Rica.
After the coffee tour we will continue to Poás Volcano where we will not only admire the impressive main crater with its sulfur fumaroles, but also learn about the different ecosystems in this beautiful national park. Following the visit to the volcano we will continue to La Paz Waterfall Gardens for lunch and tour. On arrival to the La Paz, we will walk through a trail that leads to a spectacular waterfall in the middle of the rainforest. Inside the park we will also visit the largest butterfly observatory in the country, the impressive hummingbird gallery, the serpentarium, the bird house and the frog’s exhibit. After the tour, you will be transferred to your hotel in San José. Overnight KC San Jose Hotel (B) (L)
DAY 3: SAN JOSE / SAN GERARDO DE RIVAS
Pick up at your hotel at 8.00 hrs. And then you will arrive in San Gerardo de Rivas, our staging area. Equipment check and dinner. (D)
Overnight: Hotel El Pelicano or similar [Dinner]
DAY 4: TREK TO CHIRRIPO BASE CAMP
You depart in the morning to begin your trek into the Chirripó National Park.
Today you hike in three stages as you ascend the mountain, eating snacks and lunch before you arrive at the camp by midday. The uphill trail is steep and can take up to 12 hours in poor conditions for slow trekkers. Fit, experienced hikers can do it in 6 to 7 hours. After passing the sign “Trail to Chirripó”, you begin a grueling uphill stretch called La Cuesta del Agua (allow 2 hours). This climb Up at Monte Sin Fe (“Faithless Mountain”). Expect to see colorful toucans, trogons, monkeys, and more as you pass through dwarf cloud forests draped in “Old Man’s Beard” mosses. The camp is situated 6 km below the summit.
Note: A water filter is useful for re-filling your water bottle. There are not many water sources on this day.
Overnight Shelter in National Park [Breakfast, Lunch, & Dinner] (B) (L) (D)
DAY 5: SUMMIT OF MOUNT CHIRRIPO/ SAN JOSE
Get up very early to begin trekking to the summit of Mt. Chirripó before the fog rolls in. The Chirripó National Park protects 50,150 hectares of high elevation terrain. Half the park above 8,250’ elevation is covered by cloud forest. Along the way you will pass by numerous lakes and it is clear why the Talamanca Indians called this area Chirripó – “Place of Enchanted Waters.” Enjoy the sunrise; the view to the Pacific and Atlantic is stunning. Continue descending to the Refuge Los Crestones. After breakfast, you hike back to San Gerardo de Dota and then San Jose. End of our services. Breakfast & lunch
Overnight KC San Jose Hotel (B) (L)
DAY 6: SAN JOSE / ARENAL VOLCANO –
After breakfast at 8.00 a.m. you will be picked up for drive to the ARENAL VOLCANO, the impressive Arenal Volcano is a magnificent natural wonder that attracts thousands and thousands of tourists due to its permanent, and amazing volcanic activity, which on clear days allows one to witness white plumes of smoke that emanate from the conical shaped behemoth. It should be noted, that the volcano had previously been assumed to be dormant, until in 1968, when to everyone’s amazement it experienced a major eruption.
In route to the Arenal Volcano there will be a stop in the famous town of Sarchi, known as the birthplace of Costa Rica’s Artisans. In Sarchi, you can see many of the handicrafts that Costa Rica has to offer, as well as the possibility of feasting your eyes on the world largest ox cart. The cart is made of cedar and is painted with several coats (4) of orange paint and is multicolored. The design is typical and intricate, indicative of traditional oxcarts. The oxcart is two stories high and took nearly 70 days to construct and paint. For the record, according to the Guinness book of world records, the cart is nearly 45 feet long (14 meters) and weighs 4400 lbs. (2 tons).
The journey will then continue, traversing diverse plantations with agricultural products, including pineapple farms, and mango groves, ornamental plants and cattle ranches until arriving to the small town of La Fortuna, and stopping to enjoy lunch at a cozy restaurant with a magnificent view of the volcano.
Then you will go on to relax at one of the best hot springs in the area where you will revel in the cleansing and rejuvenating effects of the thermal waters, as well as an optional massage or other special treatment, if you choose, that must be reserved ahead of time to ensure availability.
Tabacon Hot springs combines the four elements of nature; the heat of the volcano, the flowing waters of the hot springs, the pure air of the rainforest, and the fertile earth of La Fortuna de San Carlos Region, to provided visitors with a first rate experience.
And for a perfect ending, before going at Arenal Paraiso Hotel, a wonderful dinner will be served with a great view of the volcano so that you do not miss any opportunity to look at the magnificently shaped volcano. (B) (L) (D)
DAY 7: ARENAL VOLCANO
Overnight at Arenal Paraiso Hotel (B) (L)
Rappel – Cannoning Tour
10.00 hrs. We start off the adventure by assisting you into your “Petzl” harness and giving you you’re “Piranha” rappelling gear, “Pro-Tec” helmet and gloves. Next, your professionally-trained bilingual guides will give you a thorough safety talk about proper techniques and rappelling moves. Then we do a practice rappel down an easy, 15-ft. waterfall, so you can get the hang of it.
Keep in mind, you′ll be using some rock climbing moves as we make our way through this gorgeous slot canyon – some parts of the canyon are less than 5-ft. in width! Remember to use your arms, legs and “bum!” You′ll descend down 5 more waterfalls until you get to the grand finale… the biggest waterfall over 210-ft high. The water will splash all around you as you make it to the bottom, feeling incredibly exhilarated. It′s then a short 10-minute walk up the side of the canyon to where your tropical fruit and water await you and then you get treated to a delicious home-cooked lunch.
Includes: Transport to/from your hotel, professional & very fun, bilingual guides; high-quality, brand-name equipment; gloves & water; and lunch
What to bring: Secure shoes (tennis shoes, Keen or Teva-style,) clothes to get wet in & change of clothes for after the tour.
Recommended: For people in good physical condition.
DAY 8: ARENAL VOLCANO / MONTEVERDE CLOUD FOREST BIOLOGICAL RESERVE
Breakfast at the hotel Arenal Paraiso and after that our transfer to the Monteverde Cloud Forest will be a combination of land, water, and land again. This option is the best way to travel from La Fortuna to Monteverde. Our minibus will pick you up at your hotel to take you to Lake Arenal, where we will board a motorized canoe across the lake to get to Rio Chiquito; then, another minibus will take you to your hotel in beautiful Monteverde. Accommodation at your hotel. Cipreses Hotel. (B)
DAY 9: MONTEVERDE CLOUD FOREST BIOLOGICAL RESERVE
8.00 hrs. Sky Walk Tour is a complex of suspended bridges, platforms and paths, built within the Cloud Forest of Monteverde. These allow the observation of flora and fauna from ground level all the way to the top of the trees. 3,280′ of paths have been designed and built, five suspended bridges, with a total of more than 1,640′ in length and with heights of over 130′. This system offers the best opportunity, in a safe, comfortable and relaxed manner, to get to know and learn about the complexity and beauty of the tropical forest.
14.00 hrs. Canopy Tour (Zip line)
The tour is located in a private reserve behind the Cloud Forest Lodge. It starts with a short, guided hike through the private 70-acre reserve of the Cloud Forest. The first part of the tour will take you through primary (old growth) and secondary (new growth) forest. As you fly through the treetops listen closely for the vast variety of birds that can be seen and heard throughout the preserve. Then, just when you think you have become one with the canopy we get your blood pumping with a drop back down to the forest floor. From the ground you leave again for the cloud forest canopy and the tour ends with an exhilarating rappel down from “Scary Tree”.
Included: Transportation, entrance fee & bilingual specialized canopy guide.
What to Bring: Long pants or shorts, T-shirts, hiking shoes or sneakers and insect repellent
Duration: 2 – 2.5 hours.
Overnight and Breakfast at Cipreses Hotel. (B)
DAY 10: MONTEVERDE CLOUD FOREST BIOLOGICAL RESERVE / GUANACASTE (SUGAR BEACH)
Breakfast at your hotel, Cipreses, 8.30 hrs. Pick up at your hotel for drive from the cloud forest to the Northern Pacific; we will enjoy a beautiful trip to the warm climate of the Tropical. The main attraction of Guanacaste is its beautiful beaches and hot climate. For this reason, we recommend our customers to visiting Guanacaste. Overnight at Sugar Beach Hotel (B)
DAY 11: GUANACASTE BEACH (SUGAR BEACH)
Overnight at Sugar Beach Hotel (B)
DAY 12: GUANACASTE BEACH/MANUEL ANTONIO NATIONAL PARK
Mid-morning transfer to the famous Manuel Antonio National Park. Overnight at La Mansion Hotel, Manuel Antonio National Park is deservedly the most popular park in Costa Rica with beautiful white sand beaches surrounded by emerald waters and jungle. (D)
MARCH 13: MANUEL ANTONIO NATIONAL PARK
Overnight at La Mansion Hotel (B)
7.00 hrs. Manuel Antonio National Park Guided Tour
The park is made up of numerous trails, taking you through the rainforest and onto a number of pristine white sand beaches, only reachable through the park. The park is alive with tropical butterflies, birds, monkeys, snakes, iguanas, sloths, orchids and more. On this tour you’ll be able to learn about their life cycle and their special abilities and behaviors. For those that love nature and exploration, the walk within this park will be unforgettable.
Note: The National Park is closed on Monday. This tour will not be operated on that day.
What to Bring: Comfortable light clothing, hiking shoes, bottled water, camera, sunscreen, towel, insect repellent, bathing suit.
What this Tour Includes Naturalist guide, park entrance fee, snacks (after the tour), round trip transportation from your hotel.
DAY 14: MANUEL ANTONIO NATIONAL PARK / OSA PENINSULA CORCOVADO
Breakfast at the hotel. We will transfer from the hotel to the airport for a domestic flight from San Jose to Palmar Sur, where you will find the “jewel of Costa Rica”, the Corcovado National Park. Upon arrival to Palmar Sur, we will travel by boat down the Sierpe River to the hotel of your choice. You will encounter a spectacular wetland characterized by vegetation and wildlife that is so unique to the environment. Enjoy the diversity of landscapes and abundant biodiversity of the area during your journey. Overnight at Rancho Corcovado. (B) (D)
DAY 15. OSA PENINSULA CORCOVADO
Breakfast at the hotel. Today you can enjoy a hike in the Corcovado National Park, or visit the Caño Island Biological Reserve, or explore the surroundings of your hotel and enjoy bird watching. A delicious lunch will be included in your tour (location dependent upon which tour you choose). The southern lowlands of Costa Rica are home to the last rainforests of the Central American Pacific Coast, making it a unique experience. Dinner included at the hotel. Overnight at Rancho Corcovado. (B) (L) (D)
DAY 16. OSA PENINSULA CORCOVADO
Breakfast at the hotel. Depending on what you did yesterday, today you can enjoy a hike in the Corcovado National Park, or visit the Caño Island Biological Reserve, or explore the surroundings of your hotel and enjoy bird watching. A delicious lunch will be included in your tour (location dependent upon which tour you choose). The waters around Caño Island have one of the most extensive coral reefs in excellent condition on Costa Rica’s Pacific Coast. On land at the island, you will find remains of stone spheres created by ancient indigenous civilizations. Dinner included at the hotel. Overnight at Rancho Corcovado. (B) (L) (D)
DAY 17. OSA PENINSULA CORCOVADO/ SAN JOSE
Morning transfer to airport for return flight to San Jose, at the airport you will be met by our driver for drive to your hotel. Overnight at KC San Jose Hotel. (B)
DAY 18. SAN JOSÉ – END OF SERVICE.
Breakfast at the hotel and at the appointed hour; we will be transferring you to the International airport for your departure flight. Happy return trip and we hope to have you visit again. (B)
Private round-trip airport transfers
Shuttle Transportation to the different destinations included in the program
All meals where indicated (B) breakfast, (L) lunch, (D) dinner
18-night accommodations in standard rooms with 2 double beds (hotel taxes included)
Combo Tour ( Poas Volcano/ Doka Coffee Tour/ La Paz Waterfall Gardens).
Bilingual naturalist guide
National Park fees
Arenal Volcano Tour (visit to Sarchí and entrance fee to Tabacon Hot Springs)
Rappel – Cannoning Tour (Arenal Volcano)
Sky Walk Tour Monteverde
Canopy Tour (Zip line) Monteverde
Manuel Antonio National Park Guided Tour
Flight from Quepos / Palmar Sur / San Jose
Tour to Corcovado National Park
Tour to Cano Island Biological Reserve
Meals not mentioned
Airport departure taxes (US$29.00 per person).
Hotel extras (phone calls, laundry, room service, etc.)
Tips (not mandatory but appreciated)
Notes: The maximum luggage allowance for domestic flights is 25 pounds per person.
End of services.