18 days in Costa Rica Itinerary

18 days in Costa Rica Itinerary

Created using Inspirock Costa Rica tour itinerary planner

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Route & dates

18 days in Costa Rica Itinerary

Start: Tel Aviv
Fly + Drive:  21​h 30​min
1
Area de Conservacion Guanacaste
— 2 nights
Drive:  2​h 15​min
2
Tamarindo
— 2 nights
Drive:  3​h 15​min
3
Monteverde
— 2 nights
Drive:  3​h 45​min
4
Manuel Antonio
— 2 nights
Drive:  4​h 15​min
5
La Fortuna de San Carlos
— 4 nights
Drive:  3​h 15​min
6
Tortuguero
— 1 night
taxi + bus:  2​h 45​min
7
San Jose
— 3 nights
Fly:  20​h 30​min
End: Tel Aviv

2
nights
Area de Conservacion Guanacaste

Area de Conservacion Guanacaste ©
On the 5th (Sat), get impressive views of Parque Nacional Volcan Rincon de la Vieja. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the 6th (Sun): admire the sheer force of Llanos de Cortez Waterfall and then identify plant and animal life at Hacienda El Viejo Wetlands.

For ratings, other places to visit, and other tourist information, read our Area de Conservacion Guanacaste journey planner .

Tel Aviv, Israel to Area de Conservacion Guanacaste is an approximately 21.5-hour combination of flight and car. The time zone changes from Israel Standard Time (IST) to Central Standard Time (CST), which is usually a -8 hour difference. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 6th (Sun) early enough to drive to Tamarindo.

Things to do in Area de Conservacion Guanacaste

Parks Nature Trails
Highlights from your plan
Hacienda El Viejo Wetlands ©
Hacienda El Viejo Wetlands
Llanos de Cortez Waterfall ©
Llanos de Cortez Waterfall

2
nights
Tamarindo

Tamarindo ©
Surfing remains the main reason to take a trip to Tamarindo, as the beachside town is mostly known for its excellent waves.
On the 7th (Mon), stroll through Playa Conchal and then stroll through Playa Avellana. On the next day, find something for the whole family at Black Stallion Eco Park & Estates, then kick back and relax at Tamarindo Beach, and then stop by Dolores Shop.

For photos, maps, reviews, and more tourist information, go to the Tamarindo day trip planning website .

Traveling by car from Area de Conservacion Guanacaste to Tamarindo takes 2.5 hours. Finish your sightseeing early on the 8th (Tue) so you can drive to Monteverde.

Things to do in Tamarindo

Parks Beaches Outdoors

Side Trips

Black Stallion Eco Park & Estates, Playa Conchal
Highlights from your plan
Black Stallion Eco Park & Estates ©
Black Stallion Eco Park & Estates
Playa Conchal ©
Playa Conchal
Tamarindo Beach ©
Tamarindo Beach

2
nights
Monteverde

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 9th (Wed), identify plant and animal life at Monteverde Cloud Forest Biological Reserve and then identify plant and animal life at Monteverde Frog Pond. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the 10th (Thu): get to know the resident critters at The Bat Jungle, whizz through the canopy at some of the top local zipline courses and adventure parks, then get to know the resident critters at Butterfly Garden at Selvatura Park, and finally look for gifts at Women Artisans Cooperative Santa Elena and Monteverde.

To find where to stay, reviews, ratings, and other tourist information, read Monteverde driving holiday planning website .

You can drive from Tamarindo to Monteverde in 3.5 hours. Other options are to take a shuttle; or take a bus. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 10th (Thu) so you can go by car to Manuel Antonio.

Things to do in Monteverde

Parks Wildlife Zoos & Aquariums
Highlights from your plan
Zipline
The Bat Jungle ©
The Bat Jungle

2
nights
Manuel Antonio

Manuel Antonio ©
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 11th (Fri), enjoy the sand and surf at Playa Biesanz, kick back and relax at Playa Manuel Antonio, and then stroll around Parque Nahomi. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the 12th (Sat): relax and float downstream with a rafting and tubing tour and then find something for the whole family at Queposlandia Pizzeria e Ristaurante Italiano.

To see more things to do and more tourist information, refer to the Manuel Antonio travel planner.

Drive from Monteverde to Manuel Antonio in 4 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of shuttle and bus; or take a bus. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 12th (Sat) early enough to drive to La Fortuna de San Carlos.

Things to do in Manuel Antonio

Outdoors Parks Beaches

Side Trip

Quepos
Highlights from your plan
Playa Manuel Antonio ©
Playa Manuel Antonio
Playa Biesanz ©
Playa Biesanz
River Rafting & Tubing

4
nights
La Fortuna de San Carlos

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, wildlife, trails, and parks. Your plan includes some of its best attractions: soothe aching muscles at Tabacon Hot Springs, scramble along the landscape with a canyoning and rapelling tour, pause for some serene contemplation at Iglesia de La Fortuna de San Carlos, and get outside with Salto.

To find other places to visit, traveler tips, ratings, and more tourist information, read our La Fortuna de San Carlos online travel route planner .

Traveling by car from Manuel Antonio to La Fortuna de San Carlos takes 4.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a shuttle; or take a bus. Finish your sightseeing early on the 16th (Wed) so you can drive to Tortuguero.

Things to do in La Fortuna de San Carlos

Nature Parks Outdoors

Side Trip

Arenal Volcano
Highlights from your plan
River Rafting & Tubing
Tabacon Hot Springs ©
Tabacon Hot Springs
Canyoning & Rappelling Tours

1
night
Tortuguero

Tortuguero ©
One of Costa Rica's least accessible destinations, Tortuguero sits within an eponymous national park and remains accessible only by plane or boat.
Kick off your visit on the 17th (Thu): learn more about the world around you at Sea Turtle Conservancy and then explore the wealth of natural beauty at Tortuguero National Park.

For reviews, other places to visit, photos, and tourist information, you can read our Tortuguero online driving holiday planner .

Traveling by car from La Fortuna de San Carlos to Tortuguero takes 3.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a shuttle; or do a combination of bus and taxi. October in Tortuguero sees daily highs of 36°C and lows of 26°C at night. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 17th (Thu) early enough to travel to San Jose.

Things to do in Tortuguero

Nature Parks Museums
Highlights from your plan
Tortuguero National Park ©
Tortuguero National Park
Sea Turtle Conservancy ©
Sea Turtle Conservancy

3
nights
San Jose

San Jose
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.
Venture out of the city with trips to Jardins da Cachoeira de La Paz (in Vara Blanca), Poas Volcano (in Poas Volcano National Park) and Santuario Nacional Nuestra Senora de Los Angeles (in Cartago). Next up on the itinerary: get impressive views of Irazu Volcano National Park and get engrossed in the history at Museo Nacional De Costa Rica.

For maps, more things to do, where to stay, and tourist information, read our San Jose travel route planner .

You can do a combination of taxi and bus from Tortuguero to San Jose in 3 hours. Other options are to drive; or take a shuttle. Expect little chillier temperatures when traveling from Tortuguero in October; daily highs in San Jose reach 31°C and lows reach 21°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 20th (Sun) to allow enough time to travel back home.

Things to do in San Jose

Nature Parks Museums

Side Trips

Santuario Nacional Nuestra Senora de Los Angeles, Irazu Volcano National Park, Jardins da Cachoeira de La Paz, Poas Volcano
Highlights from your plan
Poas Volcano
Poas Volcano
Irazu Volcano National Park ©
Irazu Volcano National Park
Museo Nacional De Costa Rica ©
Museo Nacional De Costa Rica

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