7 days in Costa Rica Itinerary

7 days in Costa Rica Itinerary

Created using Inspirock Costa Rica itinerary maker

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

S M T W T F S
5
6
7
8
9
10
11

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.
Start off your visit on the 5th (Sun): capture your vacation like a pro with an inspiring photography tour.

For other places to visit, traveler tips, reviews, and other tourist information, read our San Jose route maker website.

Los Angeles, USA to San Jose is an approximately 9-hour flight. You can also drive. Traveling from Los Angeles to San Jose, you'll lose 2 hours due to the time zone difference. Traveling from Los Angeles in December, things will get a bit warmer in San Jose: highs are around 79°F and lows about 66°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 5th (Sun) so you can take a shuttle to La Fortuna de San Carlos.

Things to do in San Jose

Tours
Highlights from your trip

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: indulge in some personalized pampering at Tabacon Hot Springs, view the masterpieces at Galeria Estudio, relax and float downstream with a rafting and tubing tour, and explore the galleries of Wood & Art Gallery.

To find ratings, traveler tips, where to stay, and more tourist information, refer to the La Fortuna de San Carlos holiday planner.

Take a shuttle from San Jose to La Fortuna de San Carlos in 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can drive; or take a bus. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 8th (Wed) to allow time to drive to Monteverde.

Things to do in La Fortuna de San Carlos

Nature · Parks · Outdoors · Tours

Monteverde

— 1 night
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 (Thu), look for gifts at Monteverde Hummingbird Gallery and then stroll through Monteverde Cloud Forest Biological Reserve.

For more things to do, photos, and other tourist information, use the Monteverde sightseeing planner.

You can drive from La Fortuna de San Carlos to Monteverde in 3.5 hours. Another option is to take a bus. In December, daytime highs in Monteverde are 82°F, while nighttime lows are 82°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 9th (Thu) to allow enough time to drive to Manuel Antonio.

Things to do in Monteverde

Wildlife · Parks · Shopping

Manuel Antonio

— 2 nights
The rainforest meets the sea at Manuel Antonio National Park, a small but scenic natural preserve on the west coast of Costa Rica.
Kick off your visit on the 10th (Fri): enjoy the sand and surf at Playa Manuel Antonio, then take a tour by water with Boat Tours & Water Sports, and then stroll around Parque Nahomi. Here are some ideas for day two: look for gifts at Altair Souvenir & Gallery Shop and then see Off-Road Tours.

For maps, more things to do, reviews, and more tourist information, use the Manuel Antonio driving holiday planner.

You can drive from Monteverde to Manuel Antonio in 4 hours. Another option is to take a bus. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 11th (Sat) to allow enough time to fly back home.

Things to do in Manuel Antonio

Outdoors · Tours · Parks · Beaches

Side 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.