8 days in Costa Rica Itinerary

8 days in Costa Rica Itinerary

Created using Inspirock Costa Rica visit planner
Make it your trip
Fly
1
San Jose
— 1 night
Drive
2
Jaco
— 1 night
Drive
3
Manuel Antonio
— 1 night
Drive
4
La Fortuna de San Carlos
— 2 nights
Drive
5
Tamarindo
— 2 nights
Fly

S M T W T F S
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17
18
19
20
21

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 14th (Sat), get a taste of the local shopping with Multiplaza. On your second day here, get engrossed in the history at Jade Museum, take an in-depth tour of Museo Nacional De Costa Rica, then take in the architecture and atmosphere at Santuario Nacional Nuestra Senora de Los Angeles, and finally take in the architecture and atmosphere at Ruins of the Church of Carthage.

To find ratings, photos, maps, and more tourist information, you can read our San Jose day trip app.

Los Angeles, USA to San Jose is an approximately 9-hour flight. You can also drive. Due to the time zone difference, you'll lose 2 hours traveling from Los Angeles to San Jose. Prepare for a bit warmer weather when traveling from Los Angeles in January: high temperatures in San Jose hover around 78°F and lows are around 65°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 15th (Sun) so you can drive to Jaco.
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Historic Sites · Museums · Shopping · Neighborhoods
Side Trips

Jaco — 1 night

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.
Start off your visit on the 16th (Mon): tour the pleasant surroundings at Royal Butterflies, then take in the views from Tarcoles Bridge, then get a dose of the wild on a nature and wildlife tour, and finally explore the galleries of Tico Pod Art House & Gifts.

To find where to stay, maps, ratings, and more tourist information, refer to the Jaco trip maker site.

You can drive from San Jose to Jaco in 2 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 16th (Mon) to allow time to drive to Manuel Antonio.
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Wildlife · Shopping · Outdoors · 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.
On the 17th (Tue), kick back and relax at Playa Manuel Antonio, then see exotic creatures in open habitats at Safari Adventures, and then view the masterpieces at The Captain's Booty.

To find maps, more things to do, where to stay, and tourist information, use the Manuel Antonio vacation maker tool.

Drive from Jaco to Manuel Antonio in 1.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus. Cap off your sightseeing on the 17th (Tue) early enough to go by car to La Fortuna de San Carlos.
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Outdoors · Parks · Beaches · Wildlife
Side Trip

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.
Kick off your visit on the 18th (Wed): tour the pleasant surroundings at Butterfly Conservatory - Arenal and then take in the natural beauty of Tabacon Hot Springs. Keep things going the next day: take an exotic tour of a safari tour, then indulge in your favorite hot beverage with a coffee and tea tour, and then pick up some new knowledge with ChocoMuseo La Fortuna.

Plan a trip to La Fortuna de San Carlos easily and quickly by telling Inspirock to suggest an itinerary.

Drive from Manuel Antonio to La Fortuna de San Carlos in 4.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a shuttle; or take a bus. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 19th (Thu) early enough to drive to Tamarindo.
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Parks · Wildlife · Tours · Nature
Side Trip

Tamarindo — 2 nights

Surfing remains the main reason to take a trip to Tamarindo, as the beachside town is mostly known for its excellent waves.
On the 20th (Fri), enjoy the sand and surf at Tamarindo Beach, head outdoors with Outdoor Activities, and then relax and rejuvenate at some of the best spas. On the 21st (Sat), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: tour the pleasant surroundings at Monkey Park and then see some colorful creatures with a scuba or snorkeling tour.

For where to stay, more things to do, traveler tips, and tourist information, go to the Tamarindo online trip maker.

Traveling by car from La Fortuna de San Carlos to Tamarindo takes 4 hours. Alternatively, you can take a shuttle; or take a bus. Finish your sightseeing early on the 21st (Sat) so you can fly back home.
more
Outdoors · Tours · Wildlife · Parks
Side Trip

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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