16 days in Costa Rica Itinerary

16 days in Costa Rica Itinerary

Created using Inspirock Costa Rica trip planner

Make it your trip
Fly to Juan Santamaría International Airport, Drive to La Fortuna de San Carlos
1
La Fortuna de San Carlos
— 2 nights
Drive
2
Tortuguero
— 1 night
Drive
3
Puerto Viejo de Talamanca
— 1 night
Drive
4
San Jose
— 3 nights
Bus
5
Quepos
— 1 night
Drive
6
Jaco
— 2 nights
Drive
7
Monteverde
— 2 nights
Drive
8
Area de Conservacion Guanacaste
— 1 night
Drive
9
Playa Flamingo
— 2 nights
Drive to Daniel Oduber Quiros International Airport, Fly to Tamiami

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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 outdoors at Bogarin Trail and Paradise Hot Springs. Step off the beaten path and head to Butterfly Conservatory and ChocoMuseo La Fortuna. There's lots more to do: take your sightseeing to a higher altitude at Cabalgata Don Tobias, tour the pleasant surroundings at Natura Eco Park Costa Rica, trek along Arenal 1968 Volcano View & Trails, and get outside with Outdoor Activities.

To find other places to visit, reviews, traveler tips, and tourist information, refer to the La Fortuna de San Carlos road trip planner.

Tamiami, USA to La Fortuna de San Carlos is an approximately 9.5-hour combination of flight and car. The time zone difference moving from Eastern Standard Time (EST) to Central Standard Time (CST) is minus 1 hour. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 14th (Wed) to allow time to drive to Tortuguero.

Things to do in La Fortuna de San Carlos

Parks · Outdoors · Wildlife · Nature

Side Trip

Tortuguero

— 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 15th (Thu): surround yourself with nature on Jungle Tom Safaris Day Tours and then get a new perspective on nature at Sea Turtle Conservancy.

To find reviews, photos, and other tourist information, go to the Tortuguero trip tool.

Drive from La Fortuna de San Carlos to Tortuguero in 3.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a shuttle; or do a combination of bus and taxi. In July, daytime highs in Tortuguero are 85°F, while nighttime lows are 73°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 15th (Thu) early enough to drive to Puerto Viejo de Talamanca.

Things to do in Tortuguero

Outdoors · Wildlife · Tours · Museums
Highlights from your trip

Puerto Viejo de Talamanca

— 1 night

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.
Start off your visit on the 16th (Fri): walk around Nature Park Walk, stroll through La Ceiba, and then get outside with Nature Riders.

You can plan Puerto Viejo de Talamanca trip in no time by asking Inspirock to help create your itinerary.

Traveling by car from Tortuguero to Puerto Viejo de Talamanca takes 4.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a shuttle; or take a bus. Cap off your sightseeing on the 16th (Fri) early enough to go by car to San Jose.

Things to do in Puerto Viejo de Talamanca

Parks · Wildlife · Historic Sites · Outdoors

Side Trip

San Jose

— 3 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 discover tucked-away gems like Top Travel Costa Rica and Ruins of the Church of Carthage. Our Lady of the Pillar Cathedral and Museo de Ciencias Naturales La Salle are good opportunities to explore the local culture. Venture out of the city with trips to Iglesia de San Jose de Orosi and the Museum (in Orosi) and Cartago (Museo Municipal de Cartago & Iglesia Maria Auxiliadora). There's still lots to do: take a peaceful walk through Monte Sky, soothe aching muscles at Yoga Massage Therapy, take in the architecture and atmosphere at Iglesia La Soledad, and look for gifts at Riish and Toosh Afro Costa Rican Paintings.

To see reviews, other places to visit, more things to do, and other tourist information, refer to the San Jose tour builder website.

You can drive from Puerto Viejo de Talamanca to San Jose in 4 hours. Other options are to take a bus; or take a shuttle. In July, daily temperatures in San Jose can reach 80°F, while at night they dip to 67°F. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 19th (Mon) so you can catch the bus to Quepos.

Things to do in San Jose

Wildlife · Historic Sites · Nature · Parks

Side Trips

Quepos

— 1 night
The tourist-oriented town of Quepos marks the entrance for many travelers looking to explore the nearby national park.
On the 20th (Tue), take a peaceful walk through Birding Spots Manuel Antonio, kick back and relax at La Playita, and then identify plant and animal life at Snorkel Adventure CR.

For traveler tips, ratings, other places to visit, and other tourist information, you can read our Quepos online trip builder.

Traveling by bus from San Jose to Quepos takes 3 hours. Alternatively, you can drive. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 20th (Tue) so you can go by car to Jaco.

Things to do in Quepos

Outdoors · Parks · Wildlife · Tours

Side Trip

Jaco

— 2 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.
Start off your visit on the 21st (Wed): take some stellar pictures from Mirador de Jaco, kick back and relax at Playa Bejuco, then head outdoors with Costa Rica SUP'ers, and finally explore the galleries of Tico Pod Art House & Gifts. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the next day: admire the sheer force of Catarata Bijagual, then tour the pleasant surroundings at Vista Los Suenos Horseback Riding, and then paddle through the water with a kayaking and canoeing tour.

For ratings, photos, maps, and other tourist information, read our Jaco online tour itinerary planner.

Drive from Quepos to Jaco in 1.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 22nd (Thu) to allow time to drive to Monteverde.

Things to do in Jaco

Outdoors · Parks · Trails · Nature

Side Trips

Monteverde

— 2 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.
On the 23rd (Fri), stroll through Sustainability Demonstration Center, explore the galleries of Alas y Raices, then indulge in some personalized pampering at Monteverde Massage Center, and finally get a dose of the wild on a nature and wildlife tour. Keep things going the next day: tour the pleasant surroundings at Aguti Monteverde - Wildlife Reserve, then see the interesting displays at Chorotega Arts & Crafts, and then appreciate the extensive heritage of Ecological Sanctuary.

For ratings, traveler tips, more things to do, and other tourist information, read our Monteverde online itinerary builder.

Traveling by car from Jaco to Monteverde takes 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a shuttle; or take a bus. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 24th (Sat) to allow time to drive to Area de Conservacion Guanacaste.

Things to do in Monteverde

Wildlife · Parks · Outdoors · Tours

Side Trip

Area de Conservacion Guanacaste

— 1 night
Kick off your visit on the 25th (Sun): tour the pleasant surroundings at Hacienda El Viejo Wetlands and then tee off at Four Seasons Golf Club.

Plan a trip to Area de Conservacion Guanacaste easily and quickly by telling Inspirock to suggest an itinerary.

Traveling by car from Monteverde to Area de Conservacion Guanacaste takes 3 hours. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 25th (Sun) to allow time to drive to Playa Flamingo.

Things to do in Area de Conservacion Guanacaste

Parks · Outdoors · Wildlife · Golf
Highlights from your trip

Playa Flamingo

— 2 nights

White Beach

The white sand beach of Playa Flamingo has become a go-to tourist getaway by the sea.
Start off your visit on the 26th (Mon): kick back and relax at Playa Dantita, then cast your line with a fishing tour, and then head outdoors with Arenas Blancas. On the 27th (Tue), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: tour the pleasant surroundings at Playa Mina.

For ratings, photos, other places to visit, and tourist information, read our Playa Flamingo trip planner.

You can drive from Area de Conservacion Guanacaste to Playa Flamingo in 2.5 hours. On the 27th (Tue), wrap the sightseeing up by early afternoon so you can travel back home.

Things to do in Playa Flamingo

Outdoors · Parks · Beaches · Wildlife

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.