18 days in Costa Rica Itinerary

18 days in Costa Rica Itinerary

Created using Inspirock Costa Rica trip planner

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Route & dates

18 days in Costa Rica Itinerary

Venice
Fly:  17​h
San Jose
— 2 nights
Drive:  2​h 30​min
La Fortuna de San Carlos
— 3 nights
Drive:  3​h 45​min
Tamarindo
— 2 nights
Drive:  3​h 15​min
Monteverde
— 3 nights
Drive:  3​h 45​min
Manuel Antonio
— 2 nights
Drive:  6​h 45​min
Puerto Viejo de Talamanca
— 3 nights
Drive:  4​h
San Jose
— 1 night
Fly:  17​h
Venice

2
days
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.
Kick off your visit on the 6th (Sun): look for gifts at Chieton Moren and then let the river carry you with a rafting and tubing tour. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the 7th (Mon): tour the pleasant surroundings at Parque La Sabana, then get a taste of the local shopping with Galeria Namu, and then get engrossed in the history at Jade Museum.

For more things to do, maps, and other tourist information, read San Jose route builder website .

Venice, Italy to San Jose is an approximately 17-hour flight. You can also do a combination of train and flight. The time zone difference moving from Central European Time (CET) to Central Standard Time (CST) is minus 7 hours. Prepare for a bit warmer weather when traveling from Venice in May: high temperatures in San Jose hover around 32°C and lows are around 23°C. You'll set off for La Fortuna de San Carlos on the 8th (Tue).

Things to do in San Jose

#Adventure, #Tours, #Outdoors
Accommodations
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River Rafting & Tubing
Galeria Namu ©
Galeria Namu
Jade Museum ©
Jade Museum

3
days
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.
La Fortuna de San Carlos is known for nature, adventure, trails, wildlife, and theme parks. Your plan includes some of its best attractions: witness a stunning natural landmark at Tabacon Hot Springs, hike along Arenal Natura Ecological Park, relax and float downstream with a rafting and tubing tour, and take in the dramatic scenery at La Fortuna Waterfall.

Use Inspirock's suggestions to plan your La Fortuna de San Carlos trip and find the best activities and attractions for your vacation.

You can drive from San Jose to La Fortuna de San Carlos in 2.5 hours. Other options are to take a shuttle; or take a bus. On the 11th (Fri), you'll travel to Tamarindo.

Things to do in La Fortuna de San Carlos

#Parks, #Nature, #Outdoors
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Tabacon Hot Springs ©
Tabacon Hot Springs
River Rafting & Tubing
La Fortuna Waterfall ©
La Fortuna Waterfall

2
days
Tamarindo

Tamarindo ©
Surfing remains the main reason to take a trip to Tamarindo, as the beachside town is mostly known for its excellent waves.
Start off your visit on the 11th (Fri): explore and take pictures at Pura Aventura, then kick back and relax at Tamarindo Beach, and then soothe aching muscles at some of the top local wellness centers. Here are some ideas for day two: look for gifts at EK Art Jewelry, stop by Papaya Con Leche, then see some colorful creatures with a scuba or snorkeling tour, and finally look for gifts at Azul Profundo Boutique.

For photos, reviews, where to stay, and tourist information, refer to the Tamarindo online journey planner .

Drive from La Fortuna de San Carlos to Tamarindo in 4 hours. Alternatively, you can take a shuttle; or take a bus. May in Tamarindo sees daily highs of 39°C and lows of 26°C at night. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 13th (Sun) to allow time for the car ride to Monteverde.

Things to do in Tamarindo

#Outdoors, #Beaches, #Parks
Accommodations
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Tamarindo Beach ©
Tamarindo Beach
Pura Aventura ©
Pura Aventura
Playa Avellana ©
Playa Avellana

3
days
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.
Monteverde is known for adventure, wildlife, nightlife, parks, and zoos & aquariums. Your plan includes some of its best attractions: look for all kinds of wild species at Monteverde Cloud Forest Biological Reserve, look for gifts at Hummingbird Gallery, and meet the residents at The Bat Jungle.

To see reviews, ratings, and other tourist information, read our Monteverde vacation tool .

Traveling by car from Tamarindo to Monteverde takes 3.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of bus and taxi; or take a shuttle. You'll set off for Manuel Antonio on the 16th (Wed).

Things to do in Monteverde

#Parks, #Wildlife, #Shopping
Accommodations
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Hummingbird Gallery ©
Hummingbird Gallery
The Bat Jungle ©
The Bat Jungle

1
day
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.
To see more things to do, photos, ratings, and more tourist information, use the Manuel Antonio trip planning website .

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. In May in Manuel Antonio, expect temperatures between 32°C during the day and 23°C at night. On the 18th (Fri), wrap the sightseeing up by early afternoon so you can drive to Puerto Viejo de Talamanca.

Things to do in Manuel Antonio

#Parks, #Outdoors, #Wildlife
Accommodations
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MidWorld Costa Rica ©
MidWorld Costa Rica
Playa Biesanz ©
Playa Biesanz

2
days
Puerto Viejo de Talamanca

Puerto Viejo de Talamanca ©
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.
Go for a jaunt from Puerto Viejo de Talamanca to Puerto Limon to see Veragua Rainforest Park about 1h 20 min away. There's still lots to do: identify plant and animal life at Nature Observatorio, tour the pleasant surroundings at Playa Chiquita, enjoy the sand and surf at Playa Cocles, and relax in the rural setting at Chocorart.

To find ratings, maps, more things to do, and other tourist information, you can read our Puerto Viejo de Talamanca trip planner.

You can drive from Manuel Antonio to Puerto Viejo de Talamanca in 7 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus; or take a shuttle. The time zone difference when traveling from Manuel Antonio to Puerto Viejo de Talamanca is 1 hour. Traveling from Manuel Antonio in May, you can expect nighttime temperatures to be somewhat warmer in Puerto Viejo de Talamanca, with lows of 32°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 21st (Mon) to allow time to drive to San Jose.

Things to do in Puerto Viejo de Talamanca

#Parks, #Wildlife, #Outdoors

Side Trips

Veragua Rainforest Park, Gandoca - Manzanillo Wildlife Refuge, Nature Observatorio
Accommodations
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Gandoca - Manzanillo Wildlife Refuge ©
Chocorart ©
Chocorart

1
day
San Jose

San Jose ©
To see maps, traveler tips, and more tourist information, read San Jose sightseeing planning website .

Getting from Puerto Viejo de Talamanca to San Jose by car takes about 4 hours. Other options: take a bus; or take a shuttle. You'll gain 1 hour traveling from Puerto Viejo de Talamanca to San Jose due to the time zone difference. Traveling from Puerto Viejo de Talamanca in May, expect a bit cooler with lows of 23°C in San Jose. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 22nd (Tue) so you can travel back home.

Things to do in San Jose

#Shopping
Accommodations
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Libreria Internacional ©
Libreria Internacional

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