60 days in Costa Rica & Panama Itinerary

60 days in Costa Rica & Panama Itinerary

Make it your trip
Fly
1
Tamarindo, Costa Rica
— 4 nights
Drive
2
Monteverde, Costa Rica
— 5 nights
Drive
3
Jaco, Costa Rica
— 5 nights
Drive
4
Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica
— 5 nights
Drive
5
Uvita, Costa Rica
— 3 nights
Drive
6
Drake Bay, Costa Rica
— 5 nights
Drive
7
Bocas Town, Panama
— 5 nights
Fly to Panama City Marcos A Gelabert, Ferry to Contadora Island
8
Contadora Island, Panama
— 2 nights
Ferry
9
Panama City, Panama
— 8 nights
Fly to Changuinola, Drive to Puerto Viejo de Talamanca
10
Puerto Viejo de Talamanca, Costa Rica
— 4 nights
Drive
11
Tortuguero, Costa Rica
— 1 night
Drive
12
La Fortuna de San Carlos, Costa Rica
— 7 nights
Shuttle
13
San Jose, Costa Rica
— 5 nights
Fly

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Tamarindo, Costa Rica — 4 nights

Surfing remains the main reason to take a trip to Tamarindo, as the beachside town is mostly known for its excellent waves.
Explore the numerous day-trip ideas around Tamarindo: Liberia (Cafe Tio Leo & Church of La Ermita La Agonia), Playa Conchal (Playa Conchal & Garra de Leon Golf Course) and Hacienda El Viejo Wetlands (in Area de Conservacion Guanacaste). There's still lots to do: see some colorful creatures with a scuba or snorkeling tour, admire the sheer force of Cataratas Llanos de Cortes, stop by Sea Star Souvenir, and tour the pleasant surroundings at Tamarindo Beach.

To see more things to do and tourist information, read our Tamarindo travel route planner.

Denver, USA to Tamarindo is an approximately 8.5-hour flight. You can also drive. The time zone difference when traveling from Denver to Tamarindo is 1 hour. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 10th (Wed) so you can go by car to Monteverde.
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Outdoors · Parks · Wildlife · Beaches
Side Trips

Monteverde, Costa Rica — 5 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.
Monteverde is known for adventure, parks, and nightlife. Your trip includes some of its best attractions: stroll through Monteverde Cloud Forest Biological Reserve, kick your exploration up a notch at some of the top local zipline courses and adventure parks, explore the world behind art at Chorotega Arts & Crafts, and stop by Monteverde Hummingbird Gallery.

To find maps, photos, ratings, and other tourist information, read our Monteverde holiday planning app.

You can drive from Tamarindo to Monteverde in 3.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of bus and taxi; or take a shuttle. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 15th (Mon) to allow time to drive to Jaco.
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Parks · Wildlife · Tours · Shopping

Jaco, Costa Rica — 5 nights

A seaside resort town with plenty of entertaining distractions along its attractive coastline, Jaco has long been a major tourist destination on the central Pacific coast.
Jaco is known for adventure, beaches, and classes. Your trip includes some of its best attractions: get outside with Outdoor Activities, explore the striking landscape of Carara National Park, see Off-Road Tours, and kick your exploration up a notch at some of the top local zipline courses and adventure parks.

To find photos, ratings, reviews, and tourist information, go to the Jaco trip itinerary builder site.

You can drive from Monteverde to Jaco in 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a shuttle; or take a bus. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 20th (Sat) so you can go by car to Manuel Antonio.
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Outdoors · Tours · Parks · Nature
Side Trips

Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica — 5 nights

The rainforest meets the sea at Manuel Antonio National Park, a small but scenic natural preserve on the west coast of Costa Rica.
Manuel Antonio is known for beaches, adventure, and nightlife. Your trip includes some of its best attractions: tour the pleasant surroundings at Playa Manuel Antonio, indulge in some personalized pampering at Raindrop Spa, trot along with a tour on horseback, and get outside with Outdoor Activities.

For more things to do, traveler tips, and tourist information, read Manuel Antonio vacation planner.

Traveling by car from Jaco to Manuel Antonio takes 1.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 25th (Thu) early enough to drive to Uvita.
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Outdoors · Tours · Parks · Beaches
Side Trip

Uvita, Costa Rica — 3 nights

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.
When in Uvita, make a side trip to see Kokopelli in Sierpe, approximately Sierpe away. There's much more to do: explore the wealth of natural beauty at Parque Nacional Marino Ballena, take in the dramatic scenery at Santa Lucia Falls, head outdoors with Outdoor Activities, and stroll through Rancho La Merced National Wildlife Refuge.

For ratings, other places to visit, more things to do, and other tourist information, read our Uvita attractions planning site.

Traveling by car from Manuel Antonio to Uvita takes 1.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus; or take a bus. Finish your sightseeing early on the 28th (Sun) to allow enough time to drive to Drake Bay.
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Parks · Outdoors · Nature · Wildlife
Side Trips

Drake Bay, Costa Rica — 5 nights

You'll find plenty of places to visit near Drake Bay: Quebrada Cuervo (in Loma) and Piedras Blancas National Park (in Golfito). Spend a day of island exploring on the 29th (Mon) at Cano Island.

To see more things to do, photos, where to stay, and other tourist information, refer to the Drake Bay travel planning site.

Getting from Uvita to Drake Bay by car takes about 3 hours. Other options: do a combination of bus and taxi; or do a combination of bus and ferry. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 2nd (Fri) to allow time for the car ride to Bocas Town.
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Parks · Wildlife · Nature · Outdoors
Side Trips

Bocas Town, Panama — 5 nights

The colorful and relaxed Bocas Town has a welcoming atmosphere, with the modestly sized urban area showcasing typical Caribbean clapboard houses and home to a mixed community from across the world.
Go for a jaunt from Bocas Town to Bluff Beach to see Playa Bluff about 30 minutes away. There's much more to do: discover the deep blue sea with a scuba or snorkeling tour, walk around Parque Nacional Marino Isla Bastimentos, examine the collection at Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute, and kick back and relax at Starfish Beach.

To find more things to do, reviews, photos, and tourist information, you can read our Bocas Town route maker app.

You can drive from Drake Bay to Bocas Town in 8 hours. The time zone changes from Central Standard Time to Eastern Standard Time, which is usually a 1 hour difference. In September, daytime highs in Bocas Town are 84°F, while nighttime lows are 84°F. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 7th (Wed) so you can travel to Contadora Island.
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Parks · Outdoors · Beaches · Tours
Side Trips

Contadora Island, Panama — 2 nights

The most visited of the islands in the archipelago, Contadora Island benefits from having the area's only airport, linking it to the mainland and boosting tourism.
Kick off your visit on the 8th (Thu): enjoy the sand and surf at Playa Larga, then kick back and relax at Playa Ejecutiva, and then kick back and relax at Playa Cacique. On the next day, get up close to creatures of the deep with Coral Dreams and then kick back and relax at Playa de las Suecas.

For traveler tips, reviews, maps, and other tourist information, go to the Contadora Island online travel route planner.

Getting from Bocas Town to Contadora Island by combination of flight and ferry takes about 5.5 hours. Other options: do a combination of ferry and bus. Traveling from Bocas Town in September, expect a bit cooler with lows of 75°F in Contadora Island. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 9th (Fri) so you can catch the ferry to Panama City.
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Outdoors · Beaches · Parks · Tours

Panama City, Panama — 8 nights

Dubai of Latin America

Arguably the most modern of Central American cities, Panama City boasts a shimmering skyline of glass skyscrapers.
You'll find plenty of places to visit near Panama City: Portobelo (Museo de La Real Aduana de Portobelo & Black Christ). There's much more to do: make a trip to Panama Canal, explore the striking landscape of Soberania National Park, explore the ancient world of Panama La Vieja, and admire the natural beauty at Summit Botanical Gardens.

For maps, photos, more things to do, and other tourist information, use the Panama City trip site.

Traveling by ferry from Contadora Island to Panama City takes 2.5 hours. Expect a daytime high around 87°F in September, and nighttime lows around 76°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 17th (Sat) to allow time to travel to Puerto Viejo de Talamanca.
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Parks · Historic Sites · Nature · Museums
Side Trip

Puerto Viejo de Talamanca, Costa Rica — 4 nights

Walaba

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.
Spend the 20th (Tue) exploring nature at Cahuita National Park. There's lots more to do: get a dose of the wild on a nature and wildlife tour, take in nature's colorful creations at Finca La Isla, enjoy the sand and surf at Playa Puerto Viejo, and stroll through Nature Observatorio.

To find photos, ratings, other places to visit, and other tourist information, you can read our Puerto Viejo de Talamanca road trip planning website.

Traveling by combination of flight and car from Panama City to Puerto Viejo de Talamanca takes 3.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of bus and car; or drive. The time zone difference when traveling from Panama City to Puerto Viejo de Talamanca is minus 1 hour. Finish your sightseeing early on the 21st (Wed) so you can drive to Tortuguero.
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Parks · Wildlife · Outdoors · Beaches
Side Trips

Tortuguero, Costa Rica — 1 night

Costa Rica's Amazon

One of Costa Rica's least accessible destinations, Tortuguero sits within an eponymous national park and remains accessible only by plane or boat.
Start off your visit on the 22nd (Thu): explore the striking landscape of Tortuguero National Park.

To see maps, ratings, where to stay, and other tourist information, read Tortuguero tour itinerary builder site.

Drive from Puerto Viejo de Talamanca to Tortuguero in 4.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a shuttle; or take a bus. Expect a daytime high around 86°F in September, and nighttime lows around 73°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 22nd (Thu) to allow enough time to drive to La Fortuna de San Carlos.
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Nature · Parks
Highlights from your trip

La Fortuna de San Carlos, Costa Rica — 7 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.
La Fortuna de San Carlos is known for nature, adventure, and parks. Your trip includes some of its best attractions: soothe aching muscles at Tabacon Hot Springs, get impressive views of Arenal Volcano, relax in the rural setting at Arenal Vida Campesina, and Head underground at Venado Caves.

For where to stay, more things to do, and tourist information, refer to the La Fortuna de San Carlos day trip planner.

You can drive from Tortuguero to La Fortuna de San Carlos in 3.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a shuttle; or do a combination of taxi and bus. Finish your sightseeing early on the 29th (Thu) so you can take a shuttle to San Jose.
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Parks · Nature · Tours · Outdoors
Side Trip

San Jose, Costa Rica — 5 nights

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.
You'll find plenty of places to visit near San Jose: Jardins da Cachoeira de La Paz (in Vara Blanca), Cartago (Jardin Botanico Lankester & Santuario Nacional Nuestra Senora de Los Angeles) and Rescate Wildlife Rescue Center (in Alajuela). Next up on the itinerary: contemplate the geological forces at Irazu Volcano National Park, hit the best photo ops around with an inspiring photography tour, soothe aching muscles at ZENfit 506, and take in the architecture and atmosphere at Iglesia La Soledad.

For ratings, traveler tips, where to stay, and tourist information, use the San Jose road trip app.

Getting from La Fortuna de San Carlos to San Jose by shuttle takes about 2.5 hours. Other options: drive; or take a bus. Expect a daytime high around 81°F in September, and nighttime lows around 65°F. On the 4th (Tue), wrap the sightseeing up by early afternoon so you can fly back home.
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Parks · Nature · Tours · Shopping
Side Trips

Costa Rica travel guide

4.4
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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Panama travel guide

4.2
Landmarks · Historic Walking Areas · Shopping Malls
With a lively banking sector and a booming tourism industry, Panama remains one of the most powerful nations in the Americas, though it's also one of the smallest by land area. The country boasts coastlines on both the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea, so it's not surprising most Panama holidays include some form of seaside entertainment. With outstanding beaches all over the country, it's easy to find an ideal spot to swim, snorkel, dive, fish, sail, or simply kick back on the sand with a few cold drinks. The country's best-known landmark and one of the world's most significant shipping routes, Panama Canal tops most tourist itineraries--many choose to see this engineering wonder by traveling the length of it by train.
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