18 days in Costa Rica Itinerary

18 days in Costa Rica Itinerary

Created using Inspirock Costa Rica holiday planner

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Route & dates

18 days in Costa Rica Itinerary

Start: Toronto
+2
Fly + shuttle + bus:  9​h 30​min
1
Tamarindo
— 3 nights
Drive:  2​h 45​min
2
Santa Teresa
— 1 night
taxi + ferry:  3​h 45​min
3
Uvita
— 4 nights
Drive:  1​h 30​min
4
Manuel Antonio
— 2 nights
Drive:  1​h 30​min
5
La Fortuna de San Carlos
— 4 nights
Drive:  4​h 45​min
6
Puerto Viejo de Talamanca
— 2 nights
+3
bus + foot + bus + Fly:  17​h
End: Toronto

3
nights
Tamarindo

Surfing remains the main reason to take a trip to Tamarindo, as the beachside town is mostly known for its excellent waves.
On the 22nd (Sun), admire all the interesting features of Kingpin Sportfishing. On the 23rd (Mon), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: push the limits with an extreme tour, look for all kinds of wild species at Monkey Park, then explore and take pictures at Pura Aventura, and finally relax and rejuvenate at some of the top local wellness centers.

For traveler tips, other places to visit, maps, and tourist information, use the Tamarindo trip planner .

Toronto, Canada to Tamarindo is an approximately 9.5-hour flight. You can also do a combination of flight and bus; or drive. The time zone changes from Eastern Standard Time to Central Standard Time, which is usually a -1 hour difference. Traveling from Toronto in April, things will get warmer in Tamarindo: highs are around 41°C and lows about 26°C. Cap off your sightseeing on the 25th (Wed) early enough to travel to Santa Teresa.

Things to do in Tamarindo

Outdoors Tours Wildlife

Side Trips

Scuba & Snorkeling, Playa Hermosa, Adrenaline & Extreme Tours
Find places to stay Apr 22 — 25:
Highlights from your plan
Adrenaline & Extreme Tours
Playa Hermosa ©
Playa Hermosa
Scuba & Snorkeling

1
night
Santa Teresa

Santa Teresa ©
A coastal getaway popular with surfers and young travelers, Santa Teresa spreads out from the beach and the main coastal road to a ring of newer developments on the surrounding hills.
Start off your visit on the 25th (Wed): tour the pleasant surroundings at Playa Santa Teresa and then enjoy the sand and surf at Playa Carmen.

For reviews, photos, other places to visit, and tourist information, refer to the Santa Teresa itinerary planner .

Getting from Tamarindo to Santa Teresa by combination of taxi and flight takes about 3 hours. Other options: drive; or take a bus. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 26th (Thu) to allow time for travel to Uvita.

Things to do in Santa Teresa

Outdoors Beaches Parks
Find places to stay Apr 25 — 26:
Highlights from your plan
Playa Hermosa ©
Playa Hermosa
Playa Carmen ©
Playa Carmen
Playa Santa Teresa ©
Playa Santa Teresa

4
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 off the beaten path and head to Alturas Wildlife Sanctuary and Canyoning & Rappelling Tours. Your itinerary includes some good beach time at Uvita Beach and Parque Nacional Marino Ballena. There's much more to do: take in the dramatic scenery at Uvita Waterfall, look for all kinds of wild species at Oro Verde Biological Reserve, and get a dose of the wild on a nature and wildlife tour.

For where to stay, traveler tips, ratings, and more tourist information, read our Uvita trip planning website .

Traveling by combination of taxi and ferry from Santa Teresa to Uvita takes 4 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or do a combination of ferry and bus. Cap off your sightseeing on the 30th (Mon) early enough to go by car to Manuel Antonio.

Things to do in Uvita

Parks Outdoors Wildlife

Side Trip

Alturas Wildlife Sanctuary
Find places to stay Apr 26 — 30:
Highlights from your plan
Alturas Wildlife Sanctuary ©
Alturas Wildlife Sanctuary
Uvita Beach ©
Uvita Beach
Uvita Waterfall ©
Uvita Waterfall

2
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.
We've included these beaches for you: Playa Manuel Antonio and Playa Biesanz. Explore hidden gems such as River Rafting & Tubing and Spas & Wellness. Step out of Manuel Antonio with an excursion to Rainmaker Park in Parrita--about 44 minutes away. There's still lots to do: get a dose of the wild on a nature and wildlife tour and kick your exploration up a notch at some of the top local zipline courses and adventure parks.

To find reviews, where to stay, traveler tips, and more tourist information, read Manuel Antonio trip planner.

Traveling by car from Uvita to Manuel Antonio takes 1.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus. Expect a daytime high around 32°C in April, and nighttime lows around 22°C. Cap off your sightseeing on the 2nd (Wed) early enough to travel to La Fortuna de San Carlos.

Things to do in Manuel Antonio

Outdoors Tours Parks

Side Trips

Quepos, Rainmaker Park
Find places to stay Apr 30 — May 2:
Highlights from your plan
Playa Manuel Antonio ©
Playa Manuel Antonio
Rainmaker Park ©
Rainmaker Park
Zipline

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.
Get in touch with nature at Butterfly Conservatory and Cerro Chato (Chato Volcano). You'll explore the less-touristy side of things at Arenal Natura Ecological Park and Paradise Hot Springs. Go for a jaunt from La Fortuna de San Carlos to El Castillo to see Arenal Eco Zoo about 38 minutes away. Next up on the itinerary: take in the natural beauty of Tabacon Hot Springs, trek along Ecocentro Danaus, let the river carry you with a rafting and tubing tour, and get a taste of the local shopping with Onirica Art Gallery.

To find where to stay, traveler tips, more things to do, and more tourist information, you can read our La Fortuna de San Carlos route app .

Traveling by combination of taxi and flight from Manuel Antonio to La Fortuna de San Carlos takes 1.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a shuttle. Cap off your sightseeing on the 6th (Sun) early enough to go by car to Puerto Viejo de Talamanca.

Things to do in La Fortuna de San Carlos

Parks Nature Outdoors

Side Trips

El Castillo, Cerro Chato (Chato Volcano)
Find places to stay May 2 — 6:
Highlights from your plan
River Rafting & Tubing
Tabacon Hot Springs ©
Tabacon Hot Springs
Butterfly Conservatory ©
Butterfly Conservatory

2
nights
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.
Start off your visit on the 6th (Sun): enjoy the sand and surf at Playa Cocles. On your second day here, take in nature's colorful creations at Tree of Life Wildlife Rescue Center and Botanical Gardens, then tour the pleasant surroundings at Playa Chiquita, and then identify plant and animal life at Nature Observatorio.

To find maps, more things to do, photos, and tourist information, read our Puerto Viejo de Talamanca road trip planner .

Traveling by car from La Fortuna de San Carlos to Puerto Viejo de Talamanca takes 5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of car and bus; or take a bus. The time zone difference moving from Central Standard Time to Eastern Standard Time is 1 hour. In May, daily temperatures in Puerto Viejo de Talamanca can reach 32°C, while at night they dip to 32°C. Cap off your sightseeing on the 8th (Tue) early enough to travel back home.

Things to do in Puerto Viejo de Talamanca

Parks Wildlife Outdoors

Side Trips

Cahuita, Veragua Rainforest Park, Nature Observatorio
Find places to stay May 6 — 8:
Highlights from your plan
Playa Cocles ©
Playa Cocles
Playa Chiquita ©
Playa Chiquita

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