31 days in Costa Rica Itinerary

31 days in Costa Rica Itinerary

Created using Inspirock Costa Rica trip itinerary planner

Make it your trip
Train to New York JFK, Fly to Liberia
1
Tamarindo
— 4 nights
Drive
2
Area de Conservacion Guanacaste
— 2 nights
Drive
3
Monteverde
— 3 nights
Drive
4
Jaco
— 3 nights
Drive
5
Manuel Antonio
— 4 nights
Drive
6
La Fortuna de San Carlos
— 5 nights
Drive
7
Tortuguero
— 1 night
Drive
8
Puerto Viejo de Talamanca
— 2 nights
Drive
9
San Jose
— 6 nights
Fly to Baltimore, Train to Philadelphia

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31

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.
Take a break from the city and head to Dolphin & Whale Watching and Playa Nacascolo. You'll get in some beach time at Playa Conchal and Tamarindo Beach. Get out of town with these interesting Tamarindo side-trips: Playa Samara (Playa Buena Vista & Samara Beach) and Garra de Leon Golf Course (in Playa Conchal). The adventure continues: kick back and relax at Playa Avellana and tour the pleasant surroundings at Monkey Park.

To find where to stay, ratings, and more tourist information, you can read our Tamarindo trip itinerary planner.

Philadelphia, USA to Tamarindo is an approximately 11-hour combination of train and flight. You can also fly; or drive. You'll gain 1 hour traveling from Philadelphia to Tamarindo due to the time zone difference. Finish your sightseeing early on the 5th (Mon) to allow enough time to drive to Area de Conservacion Guanacaste.

Things to do in Tamarindo

Outdoors · Parks · Beaches · Wildlife

Side Trips

Find places to stay Jul 1 — 5:

Area de Conservacion Guanacaste

— 2 nights
Start off your visit on the 6th (Tue): take in the history at Parque Nacional Santa Rosa. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the 7th (Wed): tour the pleasant surroundings at Junquillal Bay Wildlife Refuge and then tour the pleasant surroundings at Hacienda El Viejo Wetlands.

For more things to do, ratings, reviews, and more tourist information, you can read our Area de Conservacion Guanacaste trip planner.

You can drive from Tamarindo to Area de Conservacion Guanacaste in 2.5 hours. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 7th (Wed) so you can go by car to Monteverde.

Things to do in Area de Conservacion Guanacaste

Parks · Historic Sites · Nature · Wildlife

Side Trip

Find places to stay Jul 5 — 7:

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.
Your inner history buff will appreciate Santa Elena Skywalk and Ecological Sanctuary. Get a sense of the local culture at Chorotega Arts & Crafts and Alas y Raices. There's much more to do: tour the pleasant surroundings at Monteverde Cloud Forest Biological Reserve, take in the exciting artwork at Arte Jaguar Gallery, take a peaceful walk through Curi Cancha Reserve, and kick your exploration up a notch at some of the top local zipline courses and adventure parks.

For traveler tips, reviews, other places to visit, and tourist information, go to the Monteverde online driving holiday planner.

You can drive from Area de Conservacion Guanacaste to Monteverde in 3 hours. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 10th (Sat) so you can go by car to Jaco.

Things to do in Monteverde

Parks · Wildlife · Historic Sites · Adventure
Find places to stay Jul 7 — 10:

Jaco

— 3 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.
Visiting Zipline and Horseback Riding Tours will get you outdoors. And it doesn't end there: skim along the rocks with a canyoning and rapelling tour, look for all kinds of wild species at Costa Rica Dreams Sportfishing, stop by Fruity Monkey Poop, and get outside with Costa Rica SUP'ers.

Take the guesswork out of planning a Jaco vacation by using our trip itinerary maker.

Getting from Monteverde to Jaco by car takes about 2.5 hours. Other options: take a shuttle; or take a bus. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 13th (Tue) early enough to drive to Manuel Antonio.

Things to do in Jaco

Outdoors · Tours · Wildlife · Adventure

Side Trip

Find places to stay Jul 10 — 13:

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.
You'll enjoy a bit of beach vacationing at Playa Manuel Antonio and Playa Biesanz. Get in touch with nature at Nature & Wildlife Tours and Alturas Wildlife Sanctuary. You'll find plenty of places to visit near Manuel Antonio: Mama Toucan's Natural and Organic Food Store (in Dominical) and Parque Nacional Marino Ballena (in Uvita). Spend the 15th (Thu) on the water with a fishing tour.

To find ratings, where to stay, more things to do, and tourist information, use the Manuel Antonio trip planning app.

Drive from Jaco to Manuel Antonio in 1.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 17th (Sat) early enough to drive to La Fortuna de San Carlos.

Things to do in Manuel Antonio

Outdoors · Wildlife · Parks · Beaches

Side Trips

Find places to stay Jul 13 — 17:

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.
Take a break from the city and head to Tabacon Hot Springs and River Rafting & Tubing. ChocoMuseo La Fortuna and Onirica Art Gallery are good opportunities to explore the local culture. There's lots more to do: take a memorable tour with Tours, tour the pleasant surroundings at Proyecto Asis, explore the striking landscape of Arenal Volcano, and head outdoors with El Salto.

For traveler tips, maps, reviews, and tourist information, use the La Fortuna de San Carlos travel route website.

Drive from Manuel Antonio to La Fortuna de San Carlos in 4.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a shuttle; or take a bus. Finish your sightseeing early on the 22nd (Thu) so you can drive to Tortuguero.

Things to do in La Fortuna de San Carlos

Parks · Nature · Outdoors · Tours

Side Trip

Find places to stay Jul 17 — 22:

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.
On the 23rd (Fri), explore the striking landscape of Tortuguero National Park.

To see maps, photos, ratings, and other tourist information, you can read our Tortuguero trip maker.

Getting from La Fortuna de San Carlos to Tortuguero by car takes about 3.5 hours. Other options: take a shuttle; or do a combination of bus and taxi. In July, plan for daily highs up to 85°F, and evening lows to 73°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 23rd (Fri) to allow enough time to drive to Puerto Viejo de Talamanca.

Things to do in Tortuguero

Nature · Parks
Find places to stay Jul 22 — 23:
Highlights from your 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 24th (Sat): tour the pleasant surroundings at Nature Observatorio and then take a memorable tour with Tours. On the next day, explore the wealth of natural beauty at Cahuita National Park.

To see photos, ratings, and tourist information, refer to the Puerto Viejo de Talamanca trip maker.

You can drive from Tortuguero to Puerto Viejo de Talamanca in 4.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a shuttle; or take a bus. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 25th (Sun) early enough to drive to San Jose.

Things to do in Puerto Viejo de Talamanca

Parks · Wildlife · Nature · Tours

Side Trips

Find places to stay Jul 23 — 25:

San Jose

— 6 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.
Visit Santuario Nacional Nuestra Senora de Los Angeles and Iglesia Maria Auxiliadora for their historical value. Step out of the city life by going to Jardins da Cachoeira de La Paz and Top Travel Costa Rica. Change things up with these side-trips from San Jose: Iglesia de San Jose de Orosi and the Museum (in Orosi) and Ruins of Iglesia de Nuestra Senora de la Limpia Concepcion (in Ujarras). Next up on the itinerary: take an in-depth tour of Museo Nacional De Costa Rica, examine the collection at Pre-Columbian Gold Museum, have fun and explore at Museo de Ciencias Naturales La Salle, and explore the wealth of natural beauty at Irazu Volcano National Park.

For other places to visit, maps, and tourist information, go to the San Jose route planner.

You can drive from Puerto Viejo de Talamanca to San Jose in 4 hours. Other options are to take a bus; or take a shuttle. In July, daytime highs in San Jose are 80°F, while nighttime lows are 67°F. You'll have a few hours on the 31st (Sat) to wrap things up before traveling home.

Things to do in San Jose

Historic Sites · Museums · Nature · Parks

Side Trips

Find places to stay Jul 25 — 31:

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.