22 days in Nicaragua & Costa Rica Itinerary

22 days in Nicaragua & Costa Rica Itinerary

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22 days in Nicaragua & Costa Rica Itinerary

Vancouver, Canada
Fly + shuttle:  14​h 45​min
Leon, Nicaragua
— 2 nights
Drive:  6​h 15​min
La Fortuna de San Carlos, Costa Rica
— 4 nights
+2
taxi + Fly + taxi:  1​h 30​min
Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica
— 3 nights
Drive:  1​h 30​min
Uvita, Costa Rica
— 3 nights
bus + shuttle:  3​h 45​min
Monteverde, Costa Rica
— 4 nights
Drive:  2​h 45​min
Playas del Coco, Costa Rica
— 3 nights
Drive:  1​h 30​min
Tamarindo, Costa Rica
— 2 nights
+3
bus + foot + shuttle + Fly:  14​h
Vancouver, Canada

1
day
Leon, Nicaragua

Leon ©
A cultured and storied city, Leon attracts guests from all over the world, drawn to the second city's style, thriving intellectual life, and liveliness.
Kick off your visit on the 25th (Wed): kick back and relax at Playa Las Penitas, examine the collection at Museo de Arte Fundacion Ortiz-Gurdian, then see the interesting displays at Museo de la Revolucion, and finally pause for some serene contemplation at Church The Recollection.

To find more things to do, ratings, and tourist information, you can read our Leon journey maker .

Vancouver, Canada to Leon is an approximately 15-hour combination of flight and shuttle. You can also do a combination of shuttle and flight; or drive. Traveling from Vancouver to Leon, you'll lose 2 hours due to the time zone difference. Plan for warmer temperatures traveling from Vancouver in April, with highs in Leon at 41°C and lows at 29°C. On the 26th (Thu), wrap the sightseeing up by early afternoon so you can drive to La Fortuna de San Carlos.

Things to do in Leon

#Parks, #Museums, #Outdoors
Accommodations
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Playa Las Penitas ©
Playa Las Penitas
Catedral de la Asunción ©
Catedral de la Asunción
Museo de Arte Fundacion Ortiz-Gurdian ©

4
days
La Fortuna de San Carlos, Costa Rica

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.
Take a break from the city and head to Butterfly Conservatory and Arenal Natura Ecological Park. You'll explore the less-touristy side of things at Ecocentro Danaus and Cerro Chato (Chato Volcano). There's much more to do: take in the natural beauty of Tabacon Hot Springs, admire the sheer force of La Fortuna Waterfall, Head underground at Venado Caves, and get a taste of the local shopping with Onirica Art Gallery.

Quickly create a custom-made itinerary for La Fortuna de San Carlos using our trip planner.

Traveling by car from Leon to La Fortuna de San Carlos takes 6.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of shuttle and flight; or take a bus. Finish your sightseeing early on the 30th (Mon) so you can travel to Manuel Antonio.

Things to do in La Fortuna de San Carlos

#Parks, #Nature, #Outdoors

Side Trips

Arenal Volcano National Park, Butterfly Conservatory
Accommodations
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Tabacon Hot Springs ©
Tabacon Hot Springs
Butterfly Conservatory ©
Butterfly Conservatory
River Rafting & Tubing

3
days
Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica

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.
Relax by the water at Playa Biesanz and Playa Manuel Antonio. Take a break from the city and head to Nature & Wildlife Tours and Zipline. There's more to do: stop by Villa Vanilla / Rainforest Spices and relax and rejuvenate at some of the top local wellness centers.

For other places to visit, photos, ratings, and other tourist information, you can read our Manuel Antonio itinerary builder site .

Traveling by combination of taxi and flight from La Fortuna de San Carlos to Manuel Antonio takes 1.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a shuttle. Expect a daytime high around 32°C in April, and nighttime lows around 22°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 3rd (Thu) so you can drive to Uvita.

Things to do in Manuel Antonio

#Outdoors, #Tours, #Parks

Side Trip

Zipline
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Playa Manuel Antonio ©
Playa Manuel Antonio
Zipline
Playa Biesanz ©
Playa Biesanz

3
days
Uvita, Costa Rica

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.
Get outdoors at Hacienda Baru and Uvita Beach. Head to Discount Liquor Wine & Cigars and Mama Toucan's Natural and Organic Food Storefor plenty of shopping. The adventure continues: look for all kinds of wild species at Alturas Wildlife Sanctuary, view the masterpieces at Magic Ananda, get interesting insight from Tours, and admire the sheer force of Uvita Waterfall.

To see reviews, more things to do, traveler tips, and tourist information, read our Uvita road trip website .

Drive from Manuel Antonio to Uvita in 1.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus. On the 6th (Sun), wrap the sightseeing up by early afternoon so you can travel to Monteverde.

Things to do in Uvita

#Outdoors, #Parks, #Tours

Side Trip

Dominical
Accommodations
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Alturas Wildlife Sanctuary ©
Alturas Wildlife Sanctuary
Uvita Beach ©
Uvita Beach
Hacienda Baru ©
Hacienda Baru

3
days
Monteverde, Costa Rica

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.
You'll explore the less-touristy side of things at Reserva Bosque Nuboso Santa Elena and Hummingbird Gallery. Get outdoors at Monteverde Cloud Forest Biological Reserve and Zipline. Go for a jaunt from Monteverde to Tilaran to see Viento Fresco Waterfall about 56 minutes away. There's more to do: meet the residents at The Bat Jungle and take in nature's colorful creations at Monteverde Orchid Garden.

For other places to visit, more things to do, ratings, and tourist information, read Monteverde visit planner.

Traveling by combination of bus and shuttle from Uvita to Monteverde takes 4 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or do a combination of bus, flight, and car. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 10th (Thu) early enough to drive to Playas del Coco.

Things to do in Monteverde

#Parks, #Wildlife, #Tours

Side Trip

Viento Fresco Waterfall
Accommodations
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Reserva Bosque Nuboso Santa Elena ©
Reserva Bosque Nuboso Santa Elena
Zipline

3
days
Playas del Coco, Costa Rica

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.
Visit Playa Hermosa and Playa Ocotal for some beach relaxation. Get outdoors at Zipline and Shark Diving. There's more to do: view the masterpieces at Rojas Bros Boruca Indigenous Arts and stop by Sea Hag Clothing.

For more things to do, maps, traveler tips, and other tourist information, you can read our Playas del Coco trip maker tool .

Traveling by car from Monteverde to Playas del Coco takes 3 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of taxi and bus; or do a combination of shuttle and bus. In May, daytime highs in Playas del Coco are 39°C, while nighttime lows are 26°C. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 13th (Sun) so you can go by car to Tamarindo.

Things to do in Playas del Coco

#Outdoors, #Wildlife, #Tours

Side Trips

Playa Ocotal, Zipline, Playa Hermosa
Accommodations
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Playa Hermosa ©
Playa Hermosa
Zipline
Playa Ocotal ©
Playa Ocotal

2
days
Tamarindo, Costa Rica

Surfing remains the main reason to take a trip to Tamarindo, as the beachside town is mostly known for its excellent waves.
Kick off your visit on the 13th (Sun): relax and rejuvenate at some of the top local wellness centers, then look for gifts at Papaya Con Leche, and then enjoy the sand and surf at Tamarindo Beach. On the 14th (Mon), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: push the limits with an extreme tour and then kick back and relax at Playa Conchal.

To see maps, photos, ratings, and more tourist information, go to the Tamarindo online journey planner .

Getting from Playas del Coco to Tamarindo by car takes about 1.5 hours. Other options: take a bus. In May in Tamarindo, expect temperatures between 39°C during the day and 26°C at night. You will leave for home on the 15th (Tue).

Things to do in Tamarindo

#Outdoors, #Parks, #Beaches

Side Trips

Playa Conchal, Adrenaline & Extreme Tours
Accommodations
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Adrenaline & Extreme Tours
Tamarindo Beach ©
Tamarindo Beach
Playa Conchal ©
Playa Conchal

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