17 days in Costa Rica Itinerary

17 days in Costa Rica Itinerary

Created using Inspirock Costa Rica route maker

Make it your trip
Fly
1
San Jose
— 1 night
Drive
2
Monteverde
— 3 nights
Drive
3
La Fortuna de San Carlos
— 3 nights
Drive
4
Puerto Limon
— 3 nights
Drive
5
Manuel Antonio
— 4 nights
Drive
6
San Jose
— 1 night
Fly

S M T W T F S
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17
18
19
20
21
22
23
24
25
26

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.
Kick off your visit on the 7th (Mon): see the interesting displays at Pre-Columbian Gold Museum and then walk around Parque La Sabana.

Discover how to plan a San Jose trip in just a few steps with Inspirock's itinerary builder.

San Francisco, USA to San Jose is an approximately 12.5-hour flight. You can also drive. Due to the time zone difference, you'll lose 2 hours traveling from San Francisco to San Jose. Traveling from San Francisco in September, San Jose is somewhat warmer at night with lows of 65°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 8th (Tue) so you can drive to Monteverde.

Things to do in San Jose

Museums · Parks

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.
Monteverde is known for adventure, parks, and nightlife. Your plan includes some of its best attractions: tour the pleasant surroundings at Monteverde Cloud Forest Biological Reserve, admire the natural beauty at Monteverde Orchid Garden, learn about wildlife with up-close encounters at The Bat Jungle, and look for gifts at Monteverde Hummingbird Gallery.

For reviews, traveler tips, where to stay, and tourist information, read Monteverde travel route planner.

Traveling by car from San Jose to Monteverde takes 3 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or do a combination of bus and taxi; or take a bus. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 11th (Fri) to allow time to drive to La Fortuna de San Carlos.

Things to do in Monteverde

Parks · Wildlife · Adventure · Tours

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.
La Fortuna de San Carlos is known for nature, adventure, and parks. Your plan includes some of its best attractions: relax and float downstream with a rafting and tubing tour, take in the dramatic scenery at La Fortuna Waterfall, indulge in some personalized pampering at Tabacon Hot Springs, and trot along with a tour on horseback.

To find where to stay, ratings, photos, and other tourist information, use the La Fortuna de San Carlos trip itinerary app.

Traveling by car from Monteverde to La Fortuna de San Carlos takes 3.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 14th (Mon) to allow time to drive to Puerto Limon.

Things to do in La Fortuna de San Carlos

Outdoors · Tours · Nature · Parks

Puerto Limon

— 3 nights
Puerto Limon is known for parks, adventure, and nature. Your plan includes some of its best attractions: kick your exploration up a notch at some of the top local zipline courses and adventure parks, enjoy the sand and surf at Playa Bonita, pause for some serene contemplation at Catedral Sagrado Corazon de Jesus, and explore the activities along Tortuguero Canal.

For reviews, maps, more things to do, and tourist information, use the Puerto Limon road trip planning website.

Getting from La Fortuna de San Carlos to Puerto Limon by car takes about 4 hours. Other options: do a combination of car and bus; or do a combination of shuttle and flight. In September, daily temperatures in Puerto Limon can reach 86°F, while at night they dip to 73°F. Cap off your sightseeing on the 17th (Thu) early enough to go by car to Manuel Antonio.

Things to do in Puerto Limon

Parks · Outdoors · Adventure · Tours

Manuel Antonio

— 4 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 plan includes some of its best attractions: kick back and relax at Playa Manuel Antonio, push the limits with Skydive Costa Rica, get a dose of the wild on a nature and wildlife tour, and tour the pleasant surroundings at Playa Biesanz.

To find photos, ratings, more things to do, and more tourist information, refer to the Manuel Antonio online attractions planner.

Traveling by car from Puerto Limon to Manuel Antonio takes 6 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of flight and bus; or take a bus. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 21st (Mon) so you can go by car to San Jose.

Things to do in Manuel Antonio

Outdoors · Tours · Parks · Beaches

Side Trip

San Jose

— 1 night
On the 21st (Mon), take an in-depth tour of Jade Museum, revel in the low prices at Mercado Municipal De Artesanias, and then let the river carry you with a rafting and tubing tour.

For traveler tips, reviews, more things to do, and more tourist information, you can read our San Jose trip planning site.

You can drive from Manuel Antonio to San Jose in 3 hours. Other options are to drive; or take a shuttle; or take a bus. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 22nd (Tue) to allow time for travel back home.

Things to do in San Jose

Museums · Outdoors · Adventure · Tours

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.