8 days in Costa Rica Itinerary

8 days in Costa Rica Itinerary

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Route & dates

8 days in Costa Rica Itinerary

Washington DC
Fly:  11​h 15​min
La Fortuna de San Carlos
— 3 nights
Drive:  2​h 45​min
Monteverde
— 2 nights
Drive:  3​h 15​min
Tamarindo
— 1 night
Fly:  2​h 15​min
San Jose
— 1 night
Fly:  8​h 15​min
Washington DC

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.
Take a break from the city and head to River Rafting & Tubing and La Fortuna Waterfall. Spend the 3rd (Sun) among the fascinating landscape of Arenal Volcano (Volcan Arenal). There's lots more to do: witness a stunning natural landmark at Tabacon Hot Springs, tour the pleasant surroundings at Ecocentro Danaus, and trek along Arenal Natura Ecological Park.

To see maps, other places to visit, more things to do, and more tourist information, use the La Fortuna de San Carlos trip planner .

Washington DC, USA to La Fortuna de San Carlos is an approximately 11.5-hour flight. You can also do a combination of flight and car; or drive. Traveling from Washington DC to La Fortuna de San Carlos, you'll gain 1 hour due to the time zone difference. Cap off your sightseeing on the 3rd (Sun) early enough to go by car to Monteverde.

Things to do in La Fortuna de San Carlos

#Parks, #Nature, #Outdoors

Side Trip

Arenal Volcano (Volcan Arenal)
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Tabacon Hot Springs ©
Tabacon Hot Springs
River Rafting & Tubing
Arenal Volcano (Volcan Arenal)
Arenal Volcano (Volcan Arenal)

1
day
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.
On the 4th (Mon), stroll through The Bat Jungle, then look for gifts at Hummingbird Gallery, and then identify plant and animal life at Monteverde Cloud Forest Biological Reserve.

To see photos, reviews, and more tourist information, use the Monteverde online tour planner .

Traveling by car from La Fortuna de San Carlos to Monteverde takes 3 hours. Alternatively, you can take a shuttle. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 5th (Tue) to allow time to drive to Tamarindo.

Things to do in Monteverde

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

1
day
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 5th (Tue): take in the exciting artwork at Con Mucho Gusto and then stroll through Tamarindo Beach.

To see maps, reviews, where to stay, and more tourist information, read our Tamarindo road trip tool .

You can drive from Monteverde to Tamarindo in 3.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of taxi and bus; or take a shuttle. In June, plan for daily highs up to 90°F, and evening lows to 74°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 6th (Wed) to allow enough time to travel to San Jose.

Things to do in Tamarindo

#Parks, #Outdoors, #Beaches
Accommodations
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Tamarindo Beach ©
Tamarindo Beach
Con Mucho Gusto ©
Con Mucho Gusto

1
day
San Jose

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.
On the 6th (Wed), admire the masterpieces at Precolumbian Gold Museum, get engrossed in the history at National Museum (Museo Nacional), and then take in the exciting artwork at Galeria Namu.

To find more things to do, reviews, traveler tips, and more tourist information, go to the San Jose driving holiday website .

You can fly from Tamarindo to San Jose in 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of bus, flight, and taxi; or drive. Traveling from Tamarindo in June, expect San Jose to be a bit cooler, temps between 80°F and 68°F. On the 7th (Thu), wrap the sightseeing up by early afternoon so you can travel back home.

Things to do in San Jose

#Museums, #Historic Sites

Side Trip

Our Lady of the Angels Basilica (Basilica de Nuestra Senora de Los Angeles)
Accommodations
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