52 days in Costa Rica Itinerary

52 days in Costa Rica Itinerary

Created using Inspirock Costa Rica trip itinerary planner

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Route & dates

52 days in Costa Rica Itinerary

Start: Montreal, Quebec
Fly:  10 h 45 min
1
La Fortuna de San Carlos
— 8 nights
Drive:  1 h 15 min
2
La Virgen
— 1 night
Drive:  2 h 45 min
3
Tortuguero
— 1 night
Drive:  3 h 45 min
4
Cahuita
— 5 nights
Drive:  4 h 30 min
5
Poas Volcano National Park
— 1 night
Taxi + Fly:  1 h 45 min
6
Tamarindo
— 8 nights
Drive:  3 h 15 min
7
Monteverde
— 8 nights
Drive:  3 h 45 min
8
Manuel Antonio
— 7 nights
Drive:  1 h 15 min
9
Uvita
— 6 nights
Bus:  3 h 15 min
10
San Jose
— 6 nights
Fly:  8 h 45 min
End: Montreal, Quebec

8
nights
La Fortuna de San Carlos

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.
Visiting La Fortuna Waterfall and Paradise Hot Springs will get you outdoors. Discover out-of-the-way places like Arenal Natura Ecological Park and Los Lagos Hot Springs. When in La Fortuna de San Carlos, make a side trip to see Butterfly Conservatory in El Castillo, approximately El Castillo away. There's much more to do: tour the pleasant surroundings at Arenal Oasis Wildlife Refuge, see exotic creatures in open habitats at a safari tour, ride a horse along Arenal Wilberth Stables, and witness a stunning natural landmark at Tabacon Hot Springs.

For photos, more things to do, where to stay, and more tourist information, read La Fortuna de San Carlos route planner.

Montreal, Canada to La Fortuna de San Carlos is an approximately 11-hour flight. You can also do a combination of flight and shuttle; or drive. Traveling from Montreal to La Fortuna de San Carlos, you'll gain 1 hour due to the time zone difference. Finish your sightseeing early on the 29th (Wed) so you can drive to La Virgen.

Things to do in La Fortuna de San Carlos

Parks Nature Outdoors

Side Trips

Arenal Volcano National Park, Butterfly Conservatory
Find places to stay Jul 21 — 29:
Highlights from your plan
Tabacon Hot Springs ©
Tabacon Hot Springs
Safaris
Arenal Natura Ecological Park ©
Arenal Natura Ecological Park

1
night
La Virgen

On the 30th (Thu), paddle through the water with a kayaking and canoeing tour and then stroll through Dave & Dave's Costa Rica Nature Park.

To see where to stay, topicsMoreInfo.option.ratings, other places to visit, and more tourist information, go to the La Virgen planning app .

Traveling by car from La Fortuna de San Carlos to La Virgen takes 1.5 hours. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 30th (Thu) early enough to drive to Tortuguero.

Things to do in La Virgen

Adventure Tours Outdoors
Find places to stay Jul 29 — 30:
Highlights from your plan
Kayaking & Canoeing
Dave & Dave's Costa Rica Nature Park ©

1
night
Tortuguero

Tortuguero ©
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 31st (Fri), add some adventure to your tour with a kayaking and canoeing tour and then explore the wealth of natural beauty at Tortuguero National Park.

For where to stay, maps, and tourist information, use the Tortuguero day trip website .

Traveling by car from La Virgen to Tortuguero takes 3 hours. In July, daily temperatures in Tortuguero can reach 34°C, while at night they dip to 26°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 31st (Fri) to allow enough time to drive to Cahuita.

Things to do in Tortuguero

Parks Nature Adventure
Find places to stay Jul 30 — 31:
Highlights from your plan
Tortuguero National Park ©
Tortuguero National Park
Kayaking & Canoeing

5
nights
Cahuita

Cahuita ©
With its dusty streets and simple (read affordable) lodgings, Cahuita bustles as a hub of backpacker tourism in southeastern Costa Rica.
Step out of the city life by going to Punta Uva Beach and Tarantulas Way. Family-friendly places like Playa Cocles and La Feria Legendaria de Playa Chiquita will thrill your kids. Step out of Cahuita to go to Manzanillo and see Nature Observatorio, which is approximately 42 minutes away. There's lots more to do: admire the natural beauty at Tree of Life Wildlife Rescue Center and Botanical Gardens, admire the sheer force of Cataratas Bribri Talamanca, explore the wealth of natural beauty at Cahuita National Park, and indulge in some personalized pampering at some of the best spas.

To find topicsMoreInfo.option.ratings, more things to do, maps, and more tourist information, read our Cahuita holiday planner.

Traveling by car from Tortuguero to Cahuita takes 4 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus. Expect a daytime high around 34°C in July, and nighttime lows around 26°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 5th (Wed) early enough to drive to Poas Volcano National Park.

Things to do in Cahuita

Parks Wildlife Beaches

Side Trips

Puerto Viejo de Talamanca, Nature Observatorio, Cataratas Bribri Talamanca
Find places to stay Jul 31 — Aug 5:
Highlights from your plan
Punta Uva Beach ©
Punta Uva Beach
Nature Observatorio ©
Nature Observatorio
Playa Cocles ©
Playa Cocles

1
night
Poas Volcano National Park

Poas Volcano National Park
A trip to Poas Volcano National Park allows you to see one of the world's largest craters, trek through a lush rainforest, and visit a coffee plantation all on the same day.
Kick off your visit on the 6th (Thu): stroll through La Paz Waterfall and Peace Lodge Gardens and then contemplate the geological forces at Poas Volcano.

To plan Poas Volcano National Park vacation without wasting time, ask Inspirock to design an itinerary.

Traveling by car from Cahuita to Poas Volcano National Park takes 4.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of flight and bus; or do a combination of bus and taxi. Cap off your sightseeing on the 6th (Thu) early enough to travel to Tamarindo.

Things to do in Poas Volcano National Park

Parks Nature Wildlife

Side Trip

La Paz Waterfall and Peace Lodge Gardens
Find places to stay Aug 5 — 6:
Highlights from your plan
Poas Volcano
Poas Volcano

8
nights
Tamarindo

Surfing remains the main reason to take a trip to Tamarindo, as the beachside town is mostly known for its excellent waves.
You'll get in some beach time at Playa Hermosa and Potrero Beach. You'll discover tucked-away gems like Adrenaline & Extreme Tours and Fishing Charters & Tours. Change things up with these side-trips from Tamarindo: Horseback Riding Tours (in Playa Samara), Liberia (Hidden Garden Art Gallery & Costa Rica'n Art Craft) and Playas del Coco (River Rafting & Tubing, Dolphin & Whale Watching, &more). There's still lots to do: get interesting insight from Tours, see Off-Road Tours, get a taste of life in the country at Pura Aventura, and look for all kinds of wild species at Wildlife Areas.

To find traveler tips, maps, where to stay, and more tourist information, refer to the Tamarindo travel route builder site .

You can do a combination of taxi and flight from Poas Volcano National Park to Tamarindo in 2 hours. Other options are to do a combination of bus and flight; or drive. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 14th (Fri) so you can go by car to Monteverde.

Things to do in Tamarindo

Outdoors Tours Wildlife

Side Trips

Playas del Coco, Liberia, Playa Flamingo, Potrero Beach, Horseback Riding Tours
Find places to stay Aug 6 — 14:
Highlights from your plan
Kayaking & Canoeing
Scuba & Snorkeling
Dolphin & Whale Watching

8
nights
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.
Attractions like The Bat Jungle and Centro de Rescate Las Pumas make great kid-friendly stops. Discover out-of-the-way places like Viento Fresco Waterfall and Spas. Step out of Monteverde to go to Puntarenas and see Guacimal River Bridge 2, which is approximately 42 minutes away. Spend the 22nd (Sat) exploring nature at Up in the Cloud Forest. The adventure continues: surround yourself with nature on a nature and wildlife tour, admire the natural beauty at Monteverde Butterfly Garden (Jardin de Mariposas), stroll through Valle Escondido Preserve, and relax in the rural setting at El Trapiche Tour.

To see more things to do, maps, traveler tips, and other tourist information, use the Monteverde online holiday builder .

Getting from Tamarindo to Monteverde by car takes about 3.5 hours. Other options: take a shuttle; or take a bus. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 22nd (Sat) so you can go by car to Manuel Antonio.

Things to do in Monteverde

Parks Wildlife Tours

Side Trips

Centro de Rescate Las Pumas, Guacimal River Bridge 2, Viento Fresco Waterfall
Find places to stay Aug 14 — 22:
Highlights from your plan
Nature & Wildlife Tours
Viento Fresco Waterfall ©
Viento Fresco Waterfall
Valle Escondido Preserve ©
Valle Escondido Preserve

7
nights
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.
Step out of the city life by going to Playa Manuel Antonio and Horseback Riding Tours. You'll explore the less-touristy side of things at Walking tours and Rainmaker Park. Explore the numerous day-trip ideas around Manuel Antonio: Jaco (Off-Road Tours, Mirador de Jaco, &more). There's much more to do: get a new perspective on things with Boat Tours & Water Sports, find your balance on the water with categoryPhrases.alias.some_of_the_best_stand_up_paddleboarding_in_the_area, explore the striking landscape of Manuel Antonio National Park, and zoom along the surf with a waterskiing or jet-skiing adventure.

For maps, more things to do, and more tourist information, refer to the Manuel Antonio trip itinerary app .

You can drive from Monteverde to Manuel Antonio in 4 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of shuttle and bus; or take a bus. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 29th (Sat) so you can go by car to Uvita.

Things to do in Manuel Antonio

Outdoors Tours Adventure

Side Trips

Quepos, Jaco, Rainmaker Park
Find places to stay Aug 22 — 29:
Highlights from your plan
Parasailing & Paragliding
Playa Manuel Antonio ©
Playa Manuel Antonio
Walking tours

6
nights
Uvita

Uvita ©
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.
Step out of the city life by going to Alturas Wildlife Sanctuary and Uvita Waterfall. Step off the beaten path and head to Uvita Beach and Dolphin & Whale Watching. When in Uvita, make a side trip to see Kokopelli in Sierpe, approximately Sierpe away. There's still lots to do: trot along with a tour on horseback, kick back and relax at Playa Ventanas, glide peacefully along the water with categoryPhrases.alias.some_of_the_best_stand_up_paddleboarding_in_the_area, and look for gifts at Mama Toucan's Natural and Organic Food Store.

For traveler tips, photos, reviews, and tourist information, refer to the Uvita holiday builder website .

Getting from Manuel Antonio to Uvita by car takes about 1.5 hours. Other options: take a bus. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 4th (Fri) early enough to take a bus to San Jose.

Things to do in Uvita

Outdoors Parks Wildlife

Side Trips

Dominical, Playa Ventanas, Kokopelli
Find places to stay Aug 29 — Sep 4:
Highlights from your plan
Kokopelli ©
Kokopelli
Uvita Beach ©
Uvita Beach
Alturas Wildlife Sanctuary ©
Alturas Wildlife Sanctuary

6
nights
San Jose

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.
Kids will appreciate attractions like Parque Diversiones and Zoo Ave. Get outdoors at Nature & Wildlife Tours and Irazu Volcano National Park. Step out of San Jose to go to Cartago and see Jardin Botanico Lankester, which is approximately 52 minutes away. Next up on the itinerary: take a memorable tour with Tours, view the masterpieces at Galeria Namu, take in the architecture and atmosphere at Iglesia La Soledad, and contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Metropolitan Church (Catedral Metropolitana).

To see other places to visit, photos, traveler tips, and tourist information, read San Jose trip itinerary tool .

You can take a bus from Uvita to San Jose in 3.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive. In September, daytime highs in San Jose are 32°C, while nighttime lows are 21°C. On the 10th (Thu), wrap the sightseeing up by early afternoon so you can travel back home.

Things to do in San Jose

Tours Parks Outdoors

Side Trips

Jardin Botanico Lankester, Zoo Ave, Nature & Wildlife Tours, Irazu Volcano National Park
Find places to stay Sep 4 — 10:
Highlights from your plan
Nature & Wildlife Tours
River Rafting & Tubing
Parque Diversiones ©
Parque Diversiones

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