31 days in Costa Rica Itinerary

31 days in Costa Rica Itinerary

Created using Inspirock Costa Rica trip itinerary planner

Make it your trip
Fly
1
San Jose
— 6 nights
Shuttle
2
La Fortuna de San Carlos
— 6 nights
Drive
3
Tortuguero
— 1 night
Drive
4
Drake Bay
— 4 nights
Drive
5
Quepos
— 4 nights
Drive
6
Monteverde
— 3 nights
Drive
7
Tamarindo
— 4 nights
Shuttle to Juan SantamarĂ­a International Airport, Fly to London

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San Jose

— 6 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.
Change things up with these side-trips from San Jose: Poas Volcano (in Poas Volcano National Park), Rescate Wildlife Rescue Center (in Alajuela) and Cartago (Santuario Nacional Nuestra Senora de Los Angeles, Jardin Botanico Lankester, &more). Next up on the itinerary: hit the best photo ops around with an inspiring photography tour, explore the striking landscape of Irazu Volcano National Park, admire the masterpieces at Museo de Arte Costarricense, and explore the galleries of Galeria Namu.

To find reviews, where to stay, photos, and other tourist information, refer to the San Jose trip builder.

London, UK to San Jose is an approximately 15-hour flight. You'll gain 6 hours traveling from London to San Jose due to the time zone difference. Prepare for somewhat warmer weather when traveling from London in July: high temperatures in San Jose hover around 31°C and lows are around 22°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 27th (Mon) early enough to take a shuttle to La Fortuna de San Carlos.

Things to do in San Jose

Parks · Tours · Museums · Outdoors

Side Trips

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.
La Fortuna de San Carlos is known for nature, adventure, and parks. Your trip includes some of its best attractions: witness a stunning natural landmark at Tabacon Hot Springs, contemplate the geological forces at Arenal Volcano, stroll through La Fortuna Waterfall, and scramble along the landscape with a canyoning and rapelling tour.

To see other places to visit, where to stay, and tourist information, go to the La Fortuna de San Carlos trip itinerary maker site.

You can take a shuttle from San Jose to La Fortuna de San Carlos in 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 2nd (Sun) so you can go by car to Tortuguero.

Things to do in La Fortuna de San Carlos

Parks · Nature · Outdoors · Tours

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 3rd (Mon): learn more about the world around you at Sea Turtle Conservancy.

To see where to stay, ratings, photos, and other tourist information, use the Tortuguero road trip planning tool.

You can 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 August, daytime highs in Tortuguero are 35°C, while nighttime lows are 26°C. On the 3rd (Mon), wrap the sightseeing up by early afternoon so you can drive to Drake Bay.

Things to do in Tortuguero

Museums
Highlights from your trip

Drake Bay

— 4 nights
Step out of Drake Bay with an excursion to Corcovado National Park in Carate--about 1h 5 min away. Spend a day of island exploring on the 5th (Wed) at Cano Island.

To find where to stay, reviews, ratings, and tourist information, use the Drake Bay trip maker site.

Traveling by car from Tortuguero to Drake Bay takes 9 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of taxi, bus, and ferry; or do a combination of taxi and bus. Finish your sightseeing early on the 7th (Fri) so you can drive to Quepos.

Things to do in Drake Bay

Parks · Wildlife · Nature · Outdoors

Side Trip

Quepos

— 4 nights
The tourist-oriented town of Quepos marks the entrance for many travelers looking to explore the nearby national park.
Quepos is known for wildlife, adventure, and spas. Your trip includes some of its best attractions: let the river carry you with a rafting and tubing tour, relax and rejuvenate at some of the best spas, take a tour by water with Boat Tours & Water Sports, and look for gifts at Altair Souvenir & Gallery Shop.

Make your Quepos itinerary with Inspirock to find out what to see and where to go.

Drive from Drake Bay to Quepos in 4 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of car and bus; or do a combination of ferry and bus. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 11th (Tue) to allow time to drive to Monteverde.

Things to do in Quepos

Tours · Outdoors · Wildlife · Adventure

Side Trip

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 trip includes some of its best attractions: tour the pleasant surroundings at Monteverde Cloud Forest Biological Reserve, admire nature's wide array of creatures at The Bat Jungle, look for gifts at Monteverde Hummingbird Gallery, and take in nature's colorful creations at Monteverde Orchid Garden.

To find where to stay, other places to visit, reviews, and tourist information, refer to the Monteverde trip planning tool.

You can drive from Quepos to Monteverde in 3.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of bus and taxi; or take a bus. Finish your sightseeing early on the 15th (Sat) to allow enough time to drive to Tamarindo.

Things to do in Monteverde

Parks · Wildlife · Tours · Adventure

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.
Take a break from Tamarindo with a short trip to Playa Guiones in Nosara, about 2 hours away. Next up on the itinerary: tour the pleasant surroundings at Tamarindo Beach, get a taste of life in the country at Pura Aventura, see some colorful creatures with a scuba or snorkeling tour, and see Off-Road Tours.

To see reviews, other places to visit, where to stay, and tourist information, read Tamarindo tour itinerary planner.

Getting from Monteverde to Tamarindo by car takes about 3.5 hours. Other options: do a combination of taxi and bus; or take a shuttle. Finish your sightseeing early on the 19th (Wed) so you can travel back home.

Things to do in Tamarindo

Outdoors · Tours · Parks · Beaches

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.