20 days in Costa Rica Itinerary

20 days in Costa Rica Itinerary

Created using Inspirock Costa Rica route maker

Make it your trip
Fly
1
San Jose
— 1 night
Drive
2
Tortuguero
— 2 nights
Drive
3
Puerto Viejo de Talamanca
— 2 nights
Drive
4
Uvita
— 2 nights
Drive
5
Playa Samara
— 2 nights
Drive
6
Playa Grande
— 2 nights
Drive
7
Monteverde
— 2 nights
Drive
8
La Fortuna de San Carlos
— 2 nights
Shuttle
9
San Jose
— 1 night
Fly

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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.
To find other places to visit, ratings, where to stay, and other tourist information, use the San Jose trip planner.

Bordeaux, France to San Jose is an approximately 27.5-hour flight. You can also fly. You'll gain 7 hours traveling from Bordeaux to San Jose due to the time zone difference. Traveling from Bordeaux in February, expect San Jose to be much warmer, temps between 30°C and 21°C. You will leave for Tortuguero on the 6th (Sun).

Things to do in San Jose

Tours · Outdoors · Wildlife · Parks

Tortuguero

— 2 nights

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.
Escape the urban bustle at Tortuguero National Park and Jungle Tom Safaris Day Tours. When in Tortuguero, make a side trip to see Caribbean Botanical Garden in Guacimo, approximately Guacimo away. Next up on the itinerary: see the interesting displays at Sea Turtle Conservancy.

For reviews, other places to visit, maps, and other tourist information, go to the Tortuguero road trip tool.

Drive from San Jose to Tortuguero in 3 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of bus and taxi. In February, daytime highs in Tortuguero are 34°C, while nighttime lows are 24°C. Cap off your sightseeing on the 8th (Tue) early enough to go by car to Puerto Viejo de Talamanca.

Things to do in Tortuguero

Parks · Nature · Outdoors · Tours

Side Trip

Puerto Viejo de Talamanca

— 2 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.
On the 9th (Wed), kick back and relax at Playa Punta Uva, surround yourself with nature on a nature and wildlife tour, and then take in nature's colorful creations at Tree of Life Wildlife Rescue Center and Botanical Gardens. On the 10th (Thu), you'll have a packed day of sightseeing: tour the pleasant surroundings at Sloth Sanctuary of Costa Rica and then stroll through Tarantulas Way.

For reviews, traveler tips, ratings, and other tourist information, go to the Puerto Viejo de Talamanca online travel route planner.

Drive from Tortuguero to Puerto Viejo de Talamanca in 4.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a shuttle; or take a bus. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 10th (Thu) early enough to drive to Uvita.

Things to do in Puerto Viejo de Talamanca

Parks · Wildlife · Outdoors · Tours

Side Trip

Uvita

— 2 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.
On the 11th (Fri), get outside with Outdoor Activities, then tour the pleasant surroundings at Alturas Wildlife Sanctuary, and then admire the sheer force of Uvita Waterfall. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the 12th (Sat): skim along the rocks with a canyoning and rapelling tour, tour the pleasant surroundings at Uvita Beach, and then stop by Discount Liquor Wine & Cigars.

To see traveler tips, ratings, reviews, and more tourist information, read Uvita trip itinerary planning app.

Traveling by car from Puerto Viejo de Talamanca to Uvita takes 7 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus; or take a bus. Finish your sightseeing early on the 13th (Sun) to allow enough time to drive to Playa Samara.

Things to do in Uvita

Outdoors · Tours · Parks · Wildlife

Side Trip

Playa Samara

— 2 nights
A beach town with just enough development to be comfortable for families accustomed to the trappings of modern life, Playa Samara has the resorts you'd expect to find in such a scenic area, but they don't hinder the relaxing atmosphere.
Escape the urban bustle at Samara Beach and Dolphin & Whale Watching. We've included these beaches for you: Barrigona Beach and Playa Guiones. It doesn't end there: take a pleasant ride with a tour on horseback and see Off-Road Tours.

To see traveler tips, ratings, other places to visit, and more tourist information, go to the Playa Samara road trip planning website.

You can drive from Uvita to Playa Samara in 6.5 hours. Other options are to do a combination of ferry and taxi; or do a combination of bus and car. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 15th (Tue) early enough to drive to Playa Grande.

Things to do in Playa Samara

Outdoors · Parks · Beaches · Tours

Side Trip

Playa Grande

— 2 nights
Playa Grande, also known as Salinas, is a beach community on the Pacific coast of Costa Rica just north of Tamarindo. On the 16th (Wed), explore the wealth of natural beauty at Las Baulas National Marine Park and then whizz through the canopy at some of the top local zipline courses and adventure parks.

For more things to do, photos, maps, and more tourist information, use the Playa Grande online visit planner.

Traveling by car from Playa Samara to Playa Grande takes 2.5 hours. Finish your sightseeing early on the 17th (Thu) to allow enough time to travel to Monteverde.

Things to do in Playa Grande

Nature · Parks · Tours · Outdoors

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.
Step out of the city life by going to Monteverde Cloud Forest Biological Reserve and Zipline. The adventure continues: stroll through Ecological Sanctuary, take in nature's colorful creations at Monteverde Orchid Garden, delve into the lush surroundings at Curi Cancha Reserve, and relax and rejuvenate at Monteverde Massage.

For more things to do, photos, reviews, and more tourist information, read Monteverde trip planner.

You can drive from Playa Grande to Monteverde in 3.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 19th (Sat) early enough to drive to La Fortuna de San Carlos.

Things to do in Monteverde

Parks · Wildlife · Tours · Adventure

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.
On the 20th (Sun), get impressive views of Arenal Volcano, take an in-depth tour of ChocoMuseo La Fortuna, and then witness a stunning natural landmark at Tabacon Hot Springs. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the 21st (Mon): skim along the rocks with a canyoning and rapelling tour and then take in the natural beauty of Ecotermales Fortuna.

To see more things to do, photos, where to stay, and other tourist information, read our La Fortuna de San Carlos trip builder tool.

Getting from Monteverde to La Fortuna de San Carlos by car takes about 3.5 hours. Other options: take a bus. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 21st (Mon) early enough to take a shuttle to San Jose.

Things to do in La Fortuna de San Carlos

Nature · Parks · Spas · Tours

Side Trip

San Jose

— 1 night
On the 22nd (Tue), view the masterpieces at Galeria Namu.

To see ratings, photos, reviews, and other tourist information, refer to the San Jose trip itinerary app.

Traveling by shuttle from La Fortuna de San Carlos to San Jose takes 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. On the 22nd (Tue), you'll have the morning to explore before heading back home.

Things to do in San Jose

Shopping · Museums
Highlights from your 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.