9 days in Costa Rica Itinerary

9 days in Costa Rica Itinerary

Created using Inspirock Costa Rica attractions planner

Make it your trip
Fly
1
San Jose
— 1 night
Shuttle
2
La Fortuna de San Carlos
— 3 nights
Drive
3
Monteverde
— 1 night
Drive
4
Jaco
— 1 night
Drive
5
Manuel Antonio
— 2 nights
Drive to Tobías Bolaños International Airport, Fly to Tijuana

S M T W T F S
27
28
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30
1
2
3
4
5
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7
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10
11
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17

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.
Kick off your visit on the 4th (Sun): hit the best photo ops around with an inspiring photography tour, then get engrossed in the history at Jade Museum, then get engrossed in the history at Museo Nacional De Costa Rica, and finally browse the exhibits of Galeria Namu.

For where to stay, traveler tips, maps, and tourist information, read San Jose day trip planner.

Tijuana, Mexico to San Jose is an approximately 22-hour flight. The time zone changes from Pacific Standard Time (PST) to Central Standard Time (CST), which is usually a 2 hour difference. July in San Jose sees daily highs of 31°C and lows of 22°C at night. Finish your sightseeing early on the 4th (Sun) to allow enough time to take a shuttle to La Fortuna de San Carlos.

Things to do in San Jose

Museums · Tours · Shopping

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: relax and rejuvenate at Tabacon Hot Springs, take in the dramatic scenery at La Fortuna Waterfall, get a new perspective on things with Boat Tours & Water Sports, and get impressive views of Arenal Volcano.

For reviews, ratings, traveler tips, and more tourist information, you can read our La Fortuna de San Carlos vacation planning site.

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 7th (Wed) early enough to drive to Monteverde.

Things to do in La Fortuna de San Carlos

Parks · Nature · Tours · Outdoors

Side Trip

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.
Kick off your visit on the 8th (Thu): stop by Monteverde Hummingbird Gallery and then tour the pleasant surroundings at Monteverde Cloud Forest Biological Reserve.

For photos, reviews, and more tourist information, use the Monteverde trip maker site.

Getting from La Fortuna de San Carlos to Monteverde by car takes about 3.5 hours. Other options: take a bus. Cap off your sightseeing on the 8th (Thu) early enough to go by car to Jaco.

Things to do in Monteverde

Parks · Wildlife · Shopping

Jaco

— 1 night
A seaside resort town with plenty of entertaining distractions along its attractive coastline, Jaco has long been a major tourist destination on the central Pacific coast.
Start off your visit on the 9th (Fri): whizz through the canopy at some of the top local zipline courses and adventure parks and then skim along the rocks with a canyoning and rapelling tour.

To find ratings, photos, other places to visit, and tourist information, go to the Jaco road trip planning site.

Traveling by car from Monteverde to Jaco takes 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a shuttle; or take a bus. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 9th (Fri) so you can go by car to Manuel Antonio.

Things to do in Jaco

Tours · Outdoors · Adventure

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.
On the 10th (Sat), tour the pleasant surroundings at Playa Manuel Antonio, then let the river carry you with a rafting and tubing tour, and then walk around Parque Nahomi.

For photos, other places to visit, ratings, and tourist information, refer to the Manuel Antonio trip maker site.

Getting from Jaco to Manuel Antonio by car takes about 1.5 hours. Other options: take a bus. Finish your sightseeing early on the 11th (Sun) so you can travel back home.

Things to do in Manuel Antonio

Outdoors · Parks · Beaches · Tours

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.