8 days in Costa Rica Itinerary

8 days in Costa Rica Itinerary

Created using Inspirock Costa Rica journey planner

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Route & dates

8 days in Costa Rica Itinerary

Start: Newark
Fly + Drive:  9​h 45​min
1
Tamarindo
— 1 night
Drive:  3​h 15​min
2
Monteverde
— 1 night
Drive:  3​h 45​min
3
Manuel Antonio
— 1 night
Drive:  4​h 15​min
4
La Fortuna de San Carlos
— 3 nights
Drive:  2​h
5
Vara Blanca
— 1 night
Fly:  6​h 15​min
End: Newark

1
night
Tamarindo

Tamarindo ©
Surfing remains the main reason to take a trip to Tamarindo, as the beachside town is mostly known for its excellent waves.
Kick off your visit on the 26th (Thu): enjoy the sand and surf at Tamarindo Beach, stop by Dolores Shop, and then get in on the family fun at Black Stallion Eco Park & Estates.

For reviews, more things to do, traveler tips, and tourist information, read our Tamarindo trip planner .

Newark, USA to Tamarindo is an approximately 10-hour combination of flight and car. The time zone difference when traveling from Newark to Tamarindo is minus 1 hour. Prepare for warmer weather when traveling from Newark in December: high temperatures in Tamarindo hover around 82°F and lows are around 82°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 26th (Thu) early enough to drive to Monteverde.

Things to do in Tamarindo

Theme Parks Parks Outdoors

Side Trip

Black Stallion Eco Park & Estates
Highlights from your plan
Black Stallion Eco Park & Estates ©
Black Stallion Eco Park & Estates
Tamarindo Beach ©
Tamarindo Beach
Dolores Shop ©
Dolores Shop

1
night
Monteverde

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.
Start off your visit on the 27th (Fri): look for all kinds of wild species at Monteverde Cloud Forest Biological Reserve and then identify plant and animal life at Monteverde Frog Pond.

For more things to do, maps, where to stay, and tourist information, you can read our Monteverde itinerary planning tool .

Getting from Tamarindo to Monteverde by car takes about 3.5 hours. Other options: take a shuttle; or take a bus. In December, daytime highs in Monteverde are 82°F, while nighttime lows are 82°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 27th (Fri) so you can drive to Manuel Antonio.

Things to do in Monteverde

Parks Wildlife
Highlights from your plan
Monteverde Frog Pond ©
Monteverde Frog Pond

1
night
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.
Start off your visit on the 28th (Sat): enjoy the sand and surf at Playa Manuel Antonio, then stroll through Playa Biesanz, and then stroll around Parque Nahomi.

Plan a Manuel Antonio trip in moments using our itinerary builder.

You can 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 28th (Sat) early enough to drive to La Fortuna de San Carlos.

Things to do in Manuel Antonio

Parks Outdoors Beaches

Side Trip

Parque Nahomi
Highlights from your plan
Playa Manuel Antonio ©
Playa Manuel Antonio
Playa Biesanz ©
Playa Biesanz
Parque Nahomi ©
Parque Nahomi

3
nights
La Fortuna de San Carlos

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: witness a stunning natural landmark at Tabacon Hot Springs, skim along the rocks with a canyoning and rapelling tour, get a taste of the local shopping with Onirica Art Gallery, and view the masterpieces at Galeria Estudio.

For photos, reviews, and more tourist information, you can read our La Fortuna de San Carlos route website .

Drive from Manuel Antonio to La Fortuna de San Carlos in 4.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a shuttle; or take a bus. Cap off your sightseeing on the 31st (Tue) early enough to go by car to Vara Blanca.

Things to do in La Fortuna de San Carlos

Parks Nature Outdoors
Highlights from your plan
Tabacon Hot Springs ©
Tabacon Hot Springs
River Rafting & Tubing
Canyoning & Rappelling Tours

1
night
Vara Blanca

Vara Blanca
A vacation in Vara Blanca, located in the heart of Costa Rica, offers excellent access to a number of attractions across the area.
On the 1st (Wed), admire the sheer force of Jardins da Cachoeira de La Paz.

For maps, reviews, other places to visit, and tourist information, go to the Vara Blanca travel route app .

Drive from La Fortuna de San Carlos to Vara Blanca in 2 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of bus and taxi; or take a bus. Wrap up your sightseeing by early afternoon on the 1st (Wed) to allow time for travel back home.

Things to do in Vara Blanca

Parks Nature

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