10 days in Costa Rica Itinerary

Created using Inspirock Costa Rica route planner
Make it your trip
San Jose
— 1 night
Poas Volcano National Park
— 1 night
Manuel Antonio
— 2 nights
La Fortuna de San Carlos
— 3 nights
Drive to Juan Santamaría International Airport, Fly to Washington


San Jose — 1 night

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 30th (Tue), view the masterpieces at Galeria Namu, take an in-depth tour of Jade Museum, and then let your taste buds guide you at a local gastronomic tour.

To find maps, other places to visit, and tourist information, use the San Jose trip planner.

Washington, USA to San Jose is an approximately 17.5-hour flight. You'll gain 1 hour traveling from Washington to San Jose due to the time zone difference. Plan for somewhat warmer temperatures traveling from Washington in May, with highs in San Jose at 82°F and lows at 67°F. On the 31st (Wed), you'll travel to Poas Volcano National Park.
Tours · Museums · Shopping

Poas Volcano National Park — 1 night

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 31st (Wed): admire the sheer force of Jardins da Cachoeira de La Paz. On the next day, get impressive views of Poas Volcano and then admire the sheer force of La Paz Waterfall and Peace Lodge Gardens.

To find where to stay, more things to do, reviews, and tourist information, you can read our Poas Volcano National Park vacation planner.

Getting from San Jose to Poas Volcano National Park by car takes about 1.5 hours. Other options: take a bus. Finish your sightseeing early on the 1st (Thu) to allow enough time to fly to Manuel Antonio.
Nature · Parks · Wildlife
Side Trip

Manuel Antonio — 2 nights

The rainforest meets the sea at Manuel Antonio National Park, a small but scenic natural preserve on the west coast of Costa Rica.
Start off your visit on the 2nd (Fri): enjoy the sand and surf at Playa Manuel Antonio and then get the lay of the land with Walking tours. On the 3rd (Sat), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: get a dose of the wild on a nature and wildlife tour, then view the masterpieces at The Captain's Booty, then get a new perspective on things with Boat Tours & Water Sports, and finally walk around Parque Nahomi.

To see more things to do, where to stay, photos, and more tourist information, read Manuel Antonio trip planning site.

You can fly from Poas Volcano National Park to Manuel Antonio in 2 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 3rd (Sat) to allow time to drive to La Fortuna de San Carlos.
Outdoors · Tours · Parks · Beaches
Side Trip

La Fortuna de San Carlos — 3 nights

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.
Kids will enjoy River Rafting & Tubing and Ecotermales Fortuna. The adventure continues: witness a stunning natural landmark at Tabacon Hot Springs, stroll through Bogarin Trail, take in the dramatic scenery at La Fortuna Waterfall, and get the adrenaline pumping with an extreme tour.

For more things to do, maps, photos, and other tourist information, read La Fortuna de San Carlos trip planner.

Traveling by car from Manuel Antonio to La Fortuna de San Carlos takes 4.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a shuttle; or take a bus. Finish your sightseeing early on the 6th (Tue) to allow enough time to travel back home.
Parks · Nature · Outdoors · Tours

Costa Rica travel guide

Beaches · Nature & Parks · Zipline
Tiny in terms of land area, Costa Rica is astoundingly diverse when it comes to culture and natural attractions. In a country called "Rich Coast", it's no surprise most Costa Rica vacations dedicate at least a few days to picturesque Pacific and Caribbean beaches, ideal for water sports and relaxation. Few small countries offer such a range of landscapes, allowing tourists to observe towering volcanoes while soaking away their worries in a hot spring, or hike into dense rainforests in the morning and surf at a modern resort in the afternoon. A trip to Costa Rica also lets you discover pristine national parks, ensuring plenty of chances to view wildlife from the comfort of eco-friendly lodges packed with amenities even ardent nature lovers secretly desire.