30 days in Costa Rica Itinerary

30 days in Costa Rica Itinerary

Created using Inspirock Costa Rica trip builder

Make it your trip
Fly to Daniel Oduber Quiros International Airport, Drive to Tamarindo
1
Tamarindo
— 4 nights
Drive
2
Playa Samara
— 2 nights
Drive
3
Santa Teresa
— 2 nights
Fly
4
Cartago
— 4 nights
Drive
5
Manuel Antonio
— 3 nights
Drive
6
Uvita
— 4 nights
Drive
7
Drake Bay
— 2 nights
Drive
8
Puerto Viejo de Talamanca
— 2 nights
Drive
9
La Fortuna de San Carlos
— 6 nights
Drive to Juan Santamaría International Airport, Fly to Cortez

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Tamarindo

— 4 nights
Surfing remains the main reason to take a trip to Tamarindo, as the beachside town is mostly known for its excellent waves.
Explore hidden gems such as Lydia Beech Art Boutique and Fishing Charters & Tours. Visit Playa Hermosa and Tamarindo Beach for some beach relaxation. Go for a jaunt from Tamarindo to Liberia to see Hidden Garden Art Gallery about 1h 30 min away. There's still lots to do: see Off-Road Tours and indulge in some personalized pampering at some of the best spas.

To see ratings, more things to do, maps, and more tourist information, read our Tamarindo travel site.

Cortez, USA to Tamarindo is an approximately 17.5-hour combination of flight and car. The time zone difference when traveling from Cortez to Tamarindo is 1 hour. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 31st (Tue) early enough to drive to Playa Samara.

Things to do in Tamarindo

Outdoors · Parks · Tours · Beaches

Side Trips

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.
Kick off your visit on the 1st (Wed): surround yourself with nature on a nature and wildlife tour and then enjoy the sand and surf at Playa Guiones. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the next day: see Off-Road Tours and then kick back and relax at Playa Carrillo.

To find photos, other places to visit, where to stay, and more tourist information, use the Playa Samara day trip planning site.

Drive from Tamarindo to Playa Samara in 2 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus. Finish your sightseeing early on the 2nd (Thu) so you can drive to Santa Teresa.

Things to do in Playa Samara

Outdoors · Parks · Beaches · Tours

Side Trips

Santa Teresa

— 2 nights
A coastal getaway popular with surfers and young travelers, Santa Teresa spreads out from the beach and the main coastal road to a ring of newer developments on the surrounding hills.
Kick off your visit on the 3rd (Fri): tour the pleasant surroundings at Playa Santa Teresa and then glide peacefully along the water with some of the best stand-up paddleboarding in the area. On your second day here, stroll through Playa Hermosa and then soothe aching muscles at some of the top local wellness centers.

To see more things to do, where to stay, reviews, and other tourist information, read our Santa Teresa online trip itinerary builder.

Getting from Playa Samara to Santa Teresa by car takes about 3.5 hours. Other options: take a bus. Finish your sightseeing early on the 4th (Sat) to allow enough time to fly to Cartago.

Things to do in Santa Teresa

Outdoors · Parks · Beaches · Spas

Cartago

— 4 nights
Cartago is a city in Costa Rica, about 25km east of the capital, San José. Eschew the tourist crowds and head to Santuario Nacional Nuestra Senora de Los Angeles and Ruins of Iglesia de Nuestra Senora de la Limpia Concepcion. Visit Ruins of the Church of Carthage and Santiago Apostol Parish Ruins for their historical value. There's more to do: pause for some serene contemplation at Iglesia Maria Auxiliadora and take in nature's colorful creations at Jardin Botanico Lankester.

For other places to visit, photos, reviews, and tourist information, read our Cartago visit website.

You can fly from Santa Teresa to Cartago in 2.5 hours. Other options are to drive; or take a bus. In September, plan for daily highs up to 81°F, and evening lows to 65°F. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 8th (Wed) so you can go by car to Manuel Antonio.

Things to do in Cartago

Historic Sites · Parks

Side Trip

Manuel Antonio

— 3 nights
The rainforest meets the sea at Manuel Antonio National Park, a small but scenic natural preserve on the west coast of Costa Rica.
Explore hidden gems such as River Rafting & Tubing and Horseback Riding Tours. Next up on the itinerary: kick back and relax at Playa Manuel Antonio, do sightseeing your way with Private Tours, and indulge in some personalized pampering at some of the best spas.

To find ratings, other places to visit, traveler tips, and more tourist information, use the Manuel Antonio sightseeing tool.

Traveling by car from Cartago to Manuel Antonio takes 3.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 11th (Sat) so you can go by car to Uvita.

Things to do in Manuel Antonio

Outdoors · Tours · Parks · Beaches

Side Trips

Uvita

— 4 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.
We've included these beaches for you: Playa Ventanas and Uvita Beach. Explore hidden gems such as Canyoning & Rappelling Tours and Kayaking & Canoeing. Next up on the itinerary: relax and rejuvenate at Danyasa Eco-Retreat - Bamboo Yoga Play Studio, tour the pleasant surroundings at Parque Nacional Marino Ballena, and look for all kinds of wild species at Ultralight Tour.

To find out how to plan a trip to Uvita, use our trip itinerary maker.

Getting from Manuel Antonio to Uvita by car takes about 1.5 hours. Other options: take a bus; or take a bus. Cap off your sightseeing on the 15th (Wed) early enough to go by car to Drake Bay.

Things to do in Uvita

Outdoors · Parks · Beaches · Tours

Side Trips

Drake Bay

— 2 nights
Kick off your visit on the 16th (Thu): tour the pleasant surroundings at Cano Island. Here are some ideas for day two: take a tour by water with Boat Tours & Water Sports.

For more things to do and tourist information, refer to the Drake Bay trip itinerary maker.

Traveling by car from Uvita to Drake Bay takes 3 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of bus and taxi; or do a combination of bus and ferry. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 17th (Fri) to allow enough time to drive to Puerto Viejo de Talamanca.

Things to do in Drake Bay

Wildlife · Parks · Nature · Outdoors

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.
Kick off your visit on the 18th (Sat): head outdoors with Outdoor Activities and then enjoy the sand and surf at Playa Punta Uva. Here are some ideas for day two: indulge in some personalized pampering at some of the best spas and then enjoy the sand and surf at Playa Cocles.

For reviews, other places to visit, photos, and tourist information, go to the Puerto Viejo de Talamanca trip itinerary app.

You can drive from Drake Bay to Puerto Viejo de Talamanca in 7.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus; or do a combination of ferry and bus. Finish your sightseeing early on the 19th (Sun) to allow enough time to drive to La Fortuna de San Carlos.

Things to do in Puerto Viejo de Talamanca

Outdoors · Parks · Beaches · Spas

La Fortuna de San Carlos

— 6 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.
Step off the beaten path and head to ChocoMuseo La Fortuna and Paradise Hot Springs. There's lots more to do: get a new perspective on things with Boat Tours & Water Sports, scramble along the landscape with a canyoning and rapelling tour, see Off-Road Tours, and witness a stunning natural landmark at Ecotermales Fortuna.

To see traveler tips, maps, reviews, and tourist information, read La Fortuna de San Carlos trip planner.

Traveling by car from Puerto Viejo de Talamanca to La Fortuna de San Carlos takes 5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of bus and taxi; or take a bus. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 25th (Sat) so you can travel back home.

Things to do in La Fortuna de San Carlos

Parks · Nature · Tours · Outdoors

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.