20 days in Costa Rica Itinerary

20 days in Costa Rica Itinerary

Created using Inspirock Costa Rica Trip Planner
Make it your trip
Fly
1
La Fortuna de San Carlos
— 2 nights
Drive
2
Manuel Antonio
— 1 night
Drive
3
Monteverde
— 3 nights
Drive
4
Santa Teresa
— 2 nights
Drive
5
Playa Samara
— 3 nights
Drive
6
Tamarindo
— 4 nights
Drive
7
Quebrada Grande
— 3 nights
Drive to Daniel Oduber Quiros International Airport, Fly to Lisbon

S M T W T F S
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1
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La Fortuna de San Carlos — 2 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.
Get in touch with nature at River Rafting & Tubing and Adrenaline & Extreme Tours. And it doesn't end there: relax and rejuvenate at Tabacon Hot Springs, contemplate the geological forces at Arenal Volcano, and view the masterpieces at Onirica Art Gallery.

To find reviews, traveler tips, and more tourist information, refer to the La Fortuna de San Carlos day trip website.

Lisbon, Portugal to La Fortuna de San Carlos is an approximately 17.5-hour flight. The time zone difference when traveling from Lisbon to La Fortuna de San Carlos is minus 6 hours. Finish your sightseeing early on the 17th (Sat) to allow enough time to drive to Manuel Antonio.
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Parks · Nature · Spas · Tours
Side Trip

Manuel Antonio — 1 night

The rainforest meets the sea at Manuel Antonio National Park, a small but scenic natural preserve on the west coast of Costa Rica.
To find maps, ratings, traveler tips, and more tourist information, read Manuel Antonio tour itinerary planner.

Traveling by car from La Fortuna de San Carlos to Manuel Antonio takes 4.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a shuttle; or take a bus. You'll set off for Monteverde on the 18th (Sun).
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Outdoors · Tours · Wildlife · Adventure

Monteverde — 3 nights

Monteverde is all about natural attractions, not surprising for an eco-tourism hotspot known for its cloud forests and rich diversity of animal life.
Escape the urban bustle at Monteverde Cloud Forest Biological Reserve and Curi Cancha Reserve. It doesn't end there: whizz through the canopy at some of the top local zipline courses and adventure parks and browse the exhibits of Art House.

To find photos, reviews, more things to do, and other tourist information, read Monteverde trip planner.

Traveling by car from Manuel Antonio to Monteverde takes 4 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus. In December, plan for daily highs up to 32°C, and evening lows to 32°C. Cap off your sightseeing on the 21st (Wed) early enough to go by car to Santa Teresa.
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Parks · Wildlife · Tours · Adventure

Santa Teresa — 2 nights

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.
Kick off your visit on the 22nd (Thu): kick back and relax at Playa Hermosa, admire the sheer force of Montezuma Falls, and then look for gifts at Tica Surf Bikinis. On your second day here, tour the pleasant surroundings at Playa Santa Teresa and then see Believe Surf and Yoga.

For more things to do, other places to visit, ratings, and more tourist information, use the Santa Teresa attractions planner.

Traveling by car from Monteverde to Santa Teresa takes 5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a shuttle; or take a bus. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 23rd (Fri) so you can go by car to Playa Samara.
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Parks · Outdoors · Beaches · Tours
Side Trip

Playa Samara — 3 nights

A beach town with just enough development to be comfortable for families accustomed to the trappings of modern life, Playa Samara has the resorts you'd expect to find in such a scenic area, but they don't hinder the relaxing atmosphere.
Visit Playa Guiones and Barrigona Beach for some beach relaxation. Step out of the city life by going to Dolphin & Whale Watching and Belen Waterfall. Get out of town with these interesting Playa Samara side-trips: Nosara (Jenstones Gallery & MAEL's ABSTRACT ART GALLERY). Next up on the itinerary: kick back and relax at Samara Beach and take in the exciting artwork at Koss Art Gallery.

To find maps, reviews, and more tourist information, refer to the Playa Samara journey builder site.

Traveling by car from Santa Teresa to Playa Samara takes 3.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus. Expect a daytime high around 32°C in December, and nighttime lows around 32°C. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 26th (Mon) so you can go by car to Tamarindo.
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Outdoors · Parks · Beaches · Shopping
Side Trip

Tamarindo — 4 nights

Surfing remains the main reason to take a trip to Tamarindo, as the beachside town is mostly known for its excellent waves.
Escape the urban bustle at Playa Avellana and Playa Conchal. Explore hidden gems such as Scuba & Snorkeling and Iglesia Catolica de Playas del Coco. Venture out of the city with trips to Rojas Bros Boruca Indigenous Arts (in Playas del Coco), Sattva Yoga (in Playa Potrero) and Playa Hermosa (in Playa Hermosa). The adventure continues: kick back and relax at Tamarindo Beach, stop by Azul Profundo Boutique, and view the masterpieces at La Galeria Centro de Arte.

For reviews, where to stay, and other tourist information, read Tamarindo day trip tool.

Traveling by car from Playa Samara to Tamarindo takes 2 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus. December in Tamarindo sees daily highs of 32°C and lows of 32°C at night. Finish your sightseeing early on the 30th (Fri) to allow enough time to drive to Quebrada Grande.
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Outdoors · Beaches · Parks · Tours
Side Trips

Quebrada Grande — 3 nights

Kick off your visit on the 31st (Sat): add some fun to your beach time Sea Star CR Sport Fishing and Adventure Tours and then stop by Souvenirs La gran Nicoya. On the 1st (Sun), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: stroll through Hacienda El Viejo Wetlands.

For where to stay, other places to visit, ratings, and tourist information, go to the Quebrada Grande travel route planner.

Traveling by car from Tamarindo to Quebrada Grande takes 2.5 hours. In December, daytime highs in Quebrada Grande are 32°C, while nighttime lows are 32°C. On the 2nd (Mon), you'll travel back home.
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Wildlife · Tours · Adventure · Outdoors
Side Trips

Costa Rica travel guide

4.5
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.
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