21 days in Costa Rica Itinerary

21 days in Costa Rica Itinerary

Created using Inspirock Costa Rica attractions planner

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Route & dates

21 days in Costa Rica Itinerary

Start: Calgary
Fly:  11​h 30​min
1
Liberia
— 1 night
Drive:  2​h 30​min
2
La Fortuna de San Carlos
— 4 nights
Drive:  1​h 30​min
3
Manuel Antonio
— 3 nights
Drive:  1​h 30​min
4
Jaco
— 2 nights
shuttle:  1​h
5
Monteverde
— 2 nights
Drive:  3​h 15​min
6
Tamarindo
— 3 nights
Drive:  1​h 30​min
7
Playas del Coco
— 4 nights
Fly:  11​h 45​min
End: Calgary

1
night
Liberia

Liberia ©
Tourism in Liberia has been growing since the opening of its airport, with more and more international visitors using the city as a starting point for explorations of the country's northwest.
Kick off your visit on the 20th (Tue): take in the exciting artwork at Hidden Garden Art Gallery and then see the interesting displays at Museo de Guanacaste. On the 21st (Wed), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: get a dose of the wild on a nature and wildlife tour.

To see photos, reviews, other places to visit, and other tourist information, read Liberia trip planner.

Calgary, Canada to Liberia is an approximately 11.5-hour flight. The time zone difference when traveling from Calgary to Liberia is 1 hour. Plan for much warmer temperatures traveling from Calgary in February, with highs in Liberia at 39°C and lows at 25°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 21st (Wed) so you can drive to La Fortuna de San Carlos.

Things to do in Liberia

Museums Shopping
Find places to stay Feb 20 — 21:
Highlights from your plan
Hidden Garden Art Gallery ©
Hidden Garden Art Gallery
Museo de Guanacaste ©
Museo de Guanacaste

4
nights
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.
Your day-by-day itinerary now includes La Fortuna Waterfall as well as Eco Termales Hot Springs. For shopping fun, head to Souvenir Leo or Wood and Art Gallery. Escape the urban bustle at River Rafting & Tubing and Venado Caves. Spend the 24th (Sat) among the fascinating landscape of Arenal Volcano (Volcan Arenal). There's still lots to do: look for all kinds of wild species at Arenal Oasis Wildlife Refuge, soothe aching muscles at some of the top local wellness centers, and take in the exciting artwork at Onirica Art Gallery.

To see maps, other places to visit, and more tourist information, read La Fortuna de San Carlos sightseeing planner.

Traveling by car from Liberia to La Fortuna de San Carlos takes 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of bus and taxi; or take a bus. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 25th (Sun) to allow time to travel to Manuel Antonio.

Things to do in La Fortuna de San Carlos

Parks Nature Wildlife

Side Trip

Arenal Volcano National Park
Find places to stay Feb 21 — 25:
Highlights from your plan
River Rafting & Tubing
Venado Caves ©
Venado Caves
La Fortuna Waterfall ©
La Fortuna Waterfall

3
nights
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.
You'll explore the less-touristy side of things at Villa Vanilla / Rainforest Spices and Playa Espadilla Norte. Get in touch with nature at Playa Biesanz and Kids Saving the Rain Forest. Take a break from Manuel Antonio with a short trip to Playa Matapalo in Quepos, about 46 minutes away. Next up on the itinerary: admire the sheer force of Mulguri Adventure and stop by Jaime Peligro Book & CD Shop.

To see reviews, maps, and more tourist information, read our Manuel Antonio online vacation planner .

You can do a combination of taxi and flight from La Fortuna de San Carlos to Manuel Antonio in 1.5 hours. Other options are to drive; or take a shuttle. Expect a daytime high around 30°C in February, and nighttime lows around 21°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 28th (Wed) so you can drive to Jaco.

Things to do in Manuel Antonio

Outdoors Parks Beaches

Side Trip

Quepos
Find places to stay Feb 25 — 28:
Highlights from your plan
Playa Espadilla Norte ©
Playa Espadilla Norte
Mulguri Adventure ©
Mulguri Adventure
Playa Biesanz ©
Playa Biesanz

2
nights
Jaco

Jaco ©
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.
On the 1st (Thu), stroll through Vista Los Suenos Horseback Riding and then stroll through Palo Seco Beach. Here are some ideas for day two: identify plant and animal life at Neo Fauna and then take a memorable tour with Tours.

To find traveler tips, more things to do, photos, and tourist information, you can read our Jaco online travel route planner .

You can drive from Manuel Antonio to Jaco in 1.5 hours. Another option is to take a bus. Finish your sightseeing early on the 2nd (Fri) so you can take a shuttle to Monteverde.

Things to do in Jaco

Outdoors Parks Tours

Side Trips

Palo Seco Beach, Vista Los Suenos Horseback Riding
Find places to stay Feb 28 — Mar 2:
Highlights from your plan
Palo Seco Beach ©
Palo Seco Beach
Zipline
Neo Fauna CR ©
Neo Fauna CR

2
nights
Monteverde

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 3rd (Sat): stroll through The Bat Jungle, stop by Hummingbird Gallery, and then look for all kinds of wild species at Monteverde Cloud Forest Biological Reserve. Here are some ideas for day two: get to know the fascinating history of Ecological Sanctuary, identify plant and animal life at Curi Cancha Reserve, and then look for gifts at Artisans Cooperative Santa Elena and Monteverde.

For other places to visit, ratings, photos, and more tourist information, you can read our Monteverde trip planner .

Getting from Jaco to Monteverde by shuttle takes about an hour. Other options: drive; or take a bus. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 4th (Sun) to allow time to drive to Tamarindo.

Things to do in Monteverde

Parks Wildlife Fun & Games
Find places to stay Mar 2 — 4:
Highlights from your plan
Ecological Sanctuary ©
Ecological Sanctuary
Curi Cancha Reserve ©
Curi Cancha Reserve

3
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.
Shop till you drop at Lydia Beech Art and Papaya Con Leche. Visiting Tamarindo Beach and Dolphin & Whale Watching will get you outdoors. Explore the numerous day-trip ideas around Tamarindo: MAEL's ABSTRACT ART GALLERY (in Nosara), San Juanillo Beach (in San Juanillo) and Playa Conchal (in Playa Conchal). The adventure continues: enjoy the sand and surf at Playa Avellana.

To find more things to do, ratings, other places to visit, and other tourist information, read our Tamarindo driving holiday app .

Drive from Monteverde to Tamarindo in 3.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of taxi and bus; or take a shuttle. In March, plan for daily highs up to 40°C, and evening lows to 25°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 7th (Wed) to allow enough time to drive to Playas del Coco.

Things to do in Tamarindo

Outdoors Parks Beaches

Side Trips

MAEL's ABSTRACT ART GALLERY, San Juanillo Beach, Dolphin & Whale Watching, Playa Conchal
Find places to stay Mar 4 — 7:
Highlights from your plan
San Juanillo Beach ©
San Juanillo Beach
Dolphin & Whale Watching
Lydia Beech Art Boutique ©
Lydia Beech Art Boutique

4
nights
Playas del Coco

Playas del Coco ©
A long-established beach community, Playas del Coco has developed a reputation as a favored spot for young travelers and locals to let loose by the sea.
Your day-by-day itinerary now includes El Viejo Wetlands. You'll get in some beach time at Playa Hermosa and Playa Ocotal. Eschew the tourist crowds and head to Shark Diving and Fishing Charters & Tours. Go for a jaunt from Playas del Coco to Santa Cruz to see Ostional National Wildlife Refuge about 52 minutes away. There's lots more to do: view the masterpieces at Rojas Bros Boruca Indigenous Arts, stop by Sea Hag Clothing, and head outdoors with Crazy Alex CR.

For where to stay, other places to visit, more things to do, and tourist information, you can read our Playas del Coco attractions planner.

You can drive from Tamarindo to Playas del Coco in 1.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus. In March, daytime highs in Playas del Coco are 40°C, while nighttime lows are 25°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 11th (Sun) so you can travel back home.

Things to do in Playas del Coco

Outdoors Wildlife Parks

Side Trips

Playa Hermosa, Hacienda El Viejo Wetlands, Ostional National Wildlife Refuge, Playa Ocotal
Find places to stay Mar 7 — 11:
Highlights from your plan
Hacienda El Viejo Wetlands ©
Hacienda El Viejo Wetlands
Shark Diving
Playa Hermosa ©
Playa Hermosa

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