Discover Costa Rica

15 days
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4.7/5 Excellent
100+ reviews  
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Cancellation Policy
Small Group Tour
Costa Rica is renowned for having proportionately more protected land than any other country, making it ripe for wildlife tourism. What is less known is the marvellous, often bizarre, variety of animals from catatonic sloths, screaming howler monkeys, screeching toucans and nesting green turtles. Throw in the Caribbean and Pacific coastlines and it is easy to...
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Trip type
Small Group Tour
Lodging level
Standard - 3 star
Physical level
Trip pace
Balanced schedule


    • Unrivalled wildlife viewing: howler monkeys, caiman and sloths
    • Visit the beaches and waterways of Tortuguero, an important nesting site for green turtles
    • Verdant rainforest, lush mangroves, lava fields and serene cloud forests
    • Wonderful naturalist guides who will share their love of Costa Rica with you
    • Relax on idyllic Pacific coast beaches
    • Stay in comfortable ecofriendly lodges and hotels
    • Citizen Science departures available on this trip

What's this trip about?

    Costa Rica is renowned for having proportionately more protected land than any other country, making it ripe for wildlife tourism. What is less known is the marvellous, often bizarre, variety of animals from catatonic sloths, screaming howler monkeys, screeching toucans and nesting green turtles. Throw in the Caribbean and Pacific coastlines and it is easy to see why so many return. This trip includes a few of our Citizen Science Departures. These special departures offer you the opportunity to be involved in the collection of freshwater samples during the trip. The environmental DNA information derived from this sample will contribute directly to the eBioAtlas; the world’s largest repository of flora and fauna species data, contributing to the conservation and restoration of biodiversity both locally and globally. To book onto one of these special departures, see the Dates & Prices tab. For more information on these departures and the eBioAtlas, click here.Experience the rainforest, mountains and coast of this tropical paradise


Itinerary focusClassic Highlights
Group sizeSmall Group - max of 16 people
Age range16 years and up
Flights and transportAll internal ground transport included
Start CitySan José
End CitySan José

Travel Themes

  • Birding
  • Cultural
  • National Parks
  • Nature & Wildlife


  • Central America
  • Costa Rica


  • Manuel Antonio National Park
  • Monteverde


  • Bird watching
  • Culture
  • Wildlife viewing

Trip includes

    • All breakfasts, eight lunches, six dinners
    • All accommodation
    • All transport and listed activities
    • Tour leader throughout
    • Arrival and departure transfers

Popular Trips


Travel Map

Day 1 Start San José

A free transfer takes you to our hotel in San José, the busy capital of Costa Rica. Read the Joining Instructions in the Trip Notes for more information on booking your seat. Check in and take it easy, there’s plenty of excitement on this trip, so today’s all about r...

Day 2 To Tortuguero National Park

Our adventure begins early this morning, leaving San José behind as we travel to the northeast of Costa Rica to Tortuguero National Park. Accessible only by boat or light aircraft, Tortuguero has a vast network of waterways, canals and swamps that is remarkably tranqu...

Day 3 Boat tour around Tortuguero waterways

An early morning boat trip enables us to discover the extraordinary flora and fauna of Tortuguero, passing serenely along the waterways. At this time of day, wildlife is usually at its most active, and with the help of our expert guide we are likely to encounter monke...

Day 4 To La Fortuna, near Arenal Volcano

We leave Tortuguero the same way we arrived by taking a small boat to the pier. Our bus will be at the pier waiting to drive us to the region of Arenal, passing huge banana, pineapple and sugar cane plantations on the way. Arenal was the most active volcano in Costa R...

Day 5 La Fortuna Waterfall hike; visit Arenal Volcano

Waterfalls are abundant in the region of Arenal and this morning we visit La Fortuna, a 213ft (65m) cascade plunging into an emerald pool. A short trail through the rainforest brings us to a relatively steep set of steps that we must descend to reach the waterfall and...

Day 6 To Monteverde in the Tilaran Mountains

From Arenal we travel to the Tilaran Mountain Range in the central highlands for our first taste of a Costa Rican cloud forest. The journey provides breathtaking views of the Gulf of Nicoya and the islands below as we ascend the hills towards Monteverde, a forest-cloa...

Day 7 Visit Santa Elena Cloud Forest Reserve

This morning we have a guided walk in Santa Elena Cloud Forest Reserve, one of the first community-managed reserves in Costa Rica and an area celebrated for its biodiversity. To this day, the reserve is managed by the Santa Elena High School with funds channelled into...

Day 8 To Manuel Antonio

Our journey takes a southeasterly turn today as we follow the Pan-Am Highway along the coastline to Manuel Antonio, passing African oil palm and teak plantations on the way. Manuel Antonio National Park consists of a vast marine reserve as well as 1,700 acres (690ha) ...

Day 9 Discover Manuel Antonio National Park

A guided tour of Manuel Antonio National Park this morning should enable us to have close wildlife encounters. White-faced capuchin monkeys play in the trees and are frequently sighted on the beaches, while noisy howler monkeys are usually heard moving through the tre...

Day 10 To Esquinas Lodge in Piedras Blancas

Travel four hours south towards Golfito, a relatively wild and undiscovered region. The dense jungle here has hardly been explored or researched. The next two nights are spent in the beautiful Esquinas Rainforest Lodge set in the heart of primary rainforest and border...

Day 11 Hike on trails in Esquinas Rainforest Nature Reserve

Hike through the rainforest this morning with your guide and experience all the sights and sounds of the jungle. During this activity we are likely to see snakes, monkeys and maybe sloths. This hike can be quite slippery after rainfall but is a real highlight and well...

Day 12 To Savegre Cloud Forest

Our journey takes a northwesterly turn through San Isidro and up and over the Cerro de la Muerte mountain range to our next destination, the Savegre Valley, around a 4hr 30min drive from Golfito. The cloud forest of Savegre is said to be one of the best places in Cost...

Day 13 Free day to discover walking trails in Savegre

Today is free to relax and explore Savegre Valley. Bring your binoculars to spot some of the 170 bird species, trek through the tropical cloud forest or simply enjoy the incredible view from the lodge. Your leader will suggest walks for today so you can discover the tropical cloud forest and sub-Andean vegetation of the area. Accommodation: Savegre Hotel & Spa or Trogon Lodge (or similar)

Day 14 Visit the village of Copey; to San José

Visit the Copey valley this morning to step momentarily into the agricultural lives of those living in the highlands of the Central Mountain Range. We take a short walk through this picturesque area stopping for snacks prepared for us with a local family, which is sur...

Day 15 End San José

A final breakfast at the hotel is your chance to say goodbye to the group, swap numbers, and perhaps start planning your next adventure. For those joining our post-trip extension to Tamarindo Beach, the wait won’t be long. No matter what your future plans are, though, there’s a free transfer to San José airport for onward flights.

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Dates & Availability

Price From $4,650
Price per day$310
Last Updated: 4/12/2024
Start Date
Finish Date
Double Standard
20 Apr 2024
04 May 2024
25 Apr 2024
09 May 2024
5 spots left
27 Apr 2024
11 May 2024
8 spots left
04 May 2024
18 May 2024
1 spots left
01 Jun 2024
15 Jun 2024
4 spots left
06 Jul 2024
20 Jul 2024
6 spots left
20 Jul 2024
03 Aug 2024
8 spots left
27 Jul 2024
10 Aug 2024
5 spots left
03 Aug 2024
17 Aug 2024
8 spots left
10 Aug 2024
24 Aug 2024
6 spots left

Check Current Availability, prices, specials with Exodus Travels.

The total tour cost includes the tour price (regular or promotional) and the compulsory local payment. The promotional price is subject to change. Check directly with the operator for the latest price offer. The tour operator requires you to pay only the tour price to purchase your travel. The compulsory local payment will be paid when you join the trip. All prices are based on double, twin or triple share occupancy. Solo passengers will be accommodated in a double, twin or triple room according to availability with a passenger(s) of the same gender. Single supplement only needs to be paid if the passenger does not want to share and requests their own room. Discounts can only be applied at the time of booking and cannot be added at a later date, regardless of any changes made to the original booking.

Prices may vary due to local taxes and trip seasonality. Click "Request Info" to inquire directly with the tour operator for the final trip price.

Exodus Travels Reviews & Ratings

4.7/5  Excellent


Aug 2018

Provided byExodus Travels

Discover costa rica

An excellent taster of the country. Well planned with good locations Meeting the owner michael Schnitzler of esquinas lodge. Such a wonderful work, he is passinate...



Aug 2018

Provided byExodus Travels

A great adventure in Costa Rica

This was our second Exodus trip and again, we were not disappointed. An itinerary which covered many different ecosystems, plenty of wildlife, pleasant travel comp...



Aug 2018

Provided byExodus Travels

Discover Costa Rica

I would highly recommend this trip. The trip is very wildlife oriented, so if that is not your main interest, it may not be for you. However, I wouldn’t say that i...



Aug 2018

Provided byExodus Travels

Discover Costa Rica

We had am amazing time on this trip from the moment we landed in San Jose. Our guide Andres kept us informed about what to expect, and bring for each activity. He...



Aug 2018

Provided byExodus Travels

Totally superb experience.

Our Guide & tour leader-Johnny [Villalobos] made this trip the best we have experienced; with his expertise, knowledge & general manner. Superior to simi...

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Exodus Discover Costa Rica is great for birders

Discover Costa Rica is a great itinerary, covering varied habitats around the country and staying 2 nights each at 6 centres. Their birdwatching specials are led by ...



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Baltimore Chop

Feb 2024

Written on

We enjoyed our first trip to Costa Rica, especially hiking in the Monteverde cloud forest, relaxing on the beach at Manuel Antonio and seeing amazing plants, flowers, birds and animals at every turn.

This was the first time we have been to Costa Rica and the first time we have done an organized tour. We decided to join the tour for the convenience of planning, t...

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Tour Operator

Exodus Travels

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It is all about adventure. That is what Exodus was founded upon and what the company is still all about. Discovering countries, cultures, environments, cities, mountain ranges, deserts, coasts and jungles; exploring this amazing planet we all live on.

At Exodus, we know what makes you tick when it comes to holidays. It’s a desire shared by so many others. A yearning to visit new places and come home with a real sense of what they’re all about. This means delving into local traditions, cultures, cuisine, lifestyles – anything that contributes to its unique identity. At the same time, we always remember that we are only guests. So we travel courteously and respectfully, in smaller groups to minimise our impact, to ensure that every Exodus holiday is a beneficial experience for everyone involved.

This is a philosophy we take with us around the world, helping you reach some incredible destinations on 500 itineraries across over 90 separate countries. We also strive to provide as much flexibility and choice as we possibly can, making it simple for you to experience a very different holiday.

Exodus started life on 4 February 1974 when two friends got together to provide an overland truck to travel to the Minaret of Jam, deep in the heart of the Hindu Kush, the most inaccessible of the world’s great monuments.

All our office staff have a passion for travel and adventure, and between us we’ve notched up experience that spans 171 different countries. That’s not all. In their former lives, our team members have been professional archaeologists, wildlife guides, overland drivers, mountain leaders, diving and ski specialists and mountain bike gurus – so no-one is better placed to create tours that appeal to a wide range of specialist interests.

Their care in putting all the details in place really shines through too. Extensive planning, research, fact-finding and training are a sign of our commitment to providing a holiday where your enjoyment, value for money and safety come first. It’s a telling reason why we remain one of the leading worldwide adventure tour companies. It is no exaggeration to say that our tour leaders can make a world of difference to the enjoyment of your holiday – so we choose them carefully. The result is that, in 2013, 93% of our clients stated that their leader exceeded their expectations. Where possible, we train and employ local leaders because they can provide invaluable insights that enrich the trip. What’s more, this investment in local staff really helps us benefit both them and their community.

Why we love this operator
With a huge range of trip styles and themes, they cater to basically every type of traveler out there- even those with super specific interests.
What they’re known for
Global trips to both classic and exotic destinations with a focus on themed adventures, exciting physical activities and discovery of local culture.

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What's excluded

    • Travel insurance
    • Single accommodation (available on request)
    • Visas or vaccinations


14 nights spent in hotels and eco-lodges, all with en suite facilities and most properties with swimming pools Travel by minibus, sometimes on dirt roads, and by boat Some dates accompanied by a specialist birdwatching guide,On this wildlife-watching trip in Costa Rica, we spend 14 nights in hotels and lodges, most of which have swimming pools. We’ve aimed for properties surrounded by nature, so we typically stay in wooden lodges within tropical gardens or within the heart of the rainforest. We have also been careful to avoid chain hotels where possible. The normal accommodations used on this trip can be found on the day-to-day itinerary; however, below are a few of the notable places we stay. Tortuguero: Laguna Lodge (nights 2-3) Constructed on a strip of land between the main lagoon and Caribbean Sea, Laguna Lodge is an away-from-it-all place to stay that’s ideal for disconnecting. There’s no road access, so we get there by boat, while the estate itself combines several wooden lodges within beautifully kept gardens. Look out for the freely roaming sloths and monkeys! There’s also a restaurant with river views and a bar on the water’s edge.  Esquinas Rainforest Nature Reserve: Esquinas Rainforest Lodge (nights 10-11) A highlight of this trip will no doubt be our stay at Esquinas Rainforest Lodge, next to Piedras Blancas National Park. We stay in simple cabins, each of which has a covered porch where you can sit and look for monkeys, raccoons, coatis and the 300-plus bird species that live here. Elsewhere, the restaurant serves modern Costa Rican gastronomy with produce from local farmers. There’s also an outdoor pool and walking trails to enjoy.  Savegre: Savegre Hotel & Spa (nights 12-3) In the middle of a natural forest reserve, Savegre Hotel is the ideal place to immerse in nature. It has plant-filled gardens, multiple walking trails, and a lookout point with views over forested slopes. We sleep in wooden lodges, while Las Bromelias restaurant dishes out international and local cuisines (made with seasonal, indigenous produce) and Los Robles, a bar-lounge, serves cocktails and Savegre coffee.   Please note: On some departures, we stay at the 24-room Trogon Lodge instead of Savegre Hotel. It’s equally idyllic, with a farm-to-table restaurant, a river-view bar and two nature trails.  Worth knowing  Some of the properties have ceiling fans rather than air conditioning.  One or several of the named properties might be substituted for similar alternatives to secure hotel availability. Please discuss with your customer operations executive if you require more details regarding your specific departure date.
Cancellation policy

The cancellation policies of this trip when booked through Travelstride are determined by the stated policies of the tour operator - Exodus Travels.

If you or any other member of your party decides to cancel a confirmed booking you must notify Travelstride in writing. Your notice of cancellation will only take effect when it is received in writing by Travelstride and will be effective from the date on which we receive it.

If You Cancel Your Holiday
You, or any member of your party, may cancel your travel arrangements at any time. Written notification from the lead name or your travel agent must be received at our offices. 

Since we incur costs in canceling your travel arrangements, you will have to pay cancellation charges as follows (see also the exceptions below): 

  • More than 42 days - No cancellation fee. Deposit can be transferred to a new booking departing within 2 years of date of travel of original booking. Any remaining balance will be refundedThis excludes all non-refundable costs as set out in clause 4 above (for example international and domestic flights and local services).
  • Between 41 and 21 days (inclusive) - No cancellation fee. Balance and deposit can be transferred to a new booking departing within 2 years of date of travel of original bookingThis excludes all non-refundable costs as further explained in clause 4 above (for example international and domestic flights and local services).
  • Between 20 and 15 days (inclusive) - 80% of the holiday cost
  • 14 days or less; or failure to join the holiday (inclusive) - 100% of the holiday cost

Certain trips may involve different cancellation charges; you will be advised if this is applicable to your holiday during the booking process.For Polar holidays, the following cancellation charges will be made for all Polar holidays. Period before departure in which you notify us: 

Cancelation charge

  • More than 133 days - Deposit only
  • 133 days or less (or failure to join the holiday) (inclusive) - 100% of the holiday cost

Notes (i) Your deposit is non-refundable, even if the cancellation charge calculated is lower than the deposit amount paid; (ii) If the reason for your cancellation is covered under the terms of your insurance policy, you may be able to reclaim these charges; (iii) certain travel arrangements may be subject to higher cancellation charges and could incur a cancellation charge of up to 100% of that part of the arrangements from the moment the booking is confirmed.

If You Change Your Booking

If, after our Booking Confirmation has been issued, you wish to change your travel arrangements in any way, for example your chosen departure date or accommodation, we will do our utmost to make these changes but it may not always be possible. Any request for changes to be made must be in writing from the lead name or your travel agent. You will be asked to pay an administration charge of $60, and any further cost we incur in making this alteration (including those charged by third party suppliers who provide the component parts of your booking).  You should be aware that these costs could increase the closer to the departure date that changes are made and you should contact us as soon as possible. Note: Certain travel arrangements may not be changeable after a reservation has been made and any alteration request could incur a cancellation charge of up to 100% of that part of the arrangements.

You can transfer your booking to another person, who satisfies all the conditions that apply to this booking, by giving us notice in writing at least 7 days before departure provided that the new lead passenger accepts the transfer and these Terms and Conditions. Both you and the new traveler are responsible for paying all costs we incur in making the transfer. Please bear in mind that certain airlines and other transport providers treat changes as a cancellation and charge accordingly, up to 100% of the cost for that part of the arrangement. Where applicable these charges will be passed on to you.

If We Cancel Your Booking

Exodus reserves the right to cancel an itinerary before departure for any reason whatsoever, including too few participants ,logistical problems, a Force Majeure Event (as defined in Section 8), or any other circumstances that may make operation of the trip inadvisable. All trip payments received will be promptly refunded, and this refund will be the limit of Exodus’s liability without any further obligation on Exodus’s part. Exodus is not responsible for any expenses incurred by trip members in preparing for the trip, including non-refundable or penalty-carrying airline tickets, special clothing, visa or passport fees, or other trip-related expenses.

If We Change Your Booking

  1. Changes to the price. We can change your holiday price after you’ve booked, only in certain circumstances. Changes in the price of the carriage of passengers resulting from changes to the cost of fuel or other power sources, the level of taxes or fees imposed by third parties including tourist taxes, landing taxes or embarkation or disembarkation fees at ports and airports, or exchange rates mean that the price of your travel arrangements may change after you have booked.

  2. Changes other than the price. It is a term of your booking that we are able to make changes to any aspect of your booking. If the change is insignificant, we will ensure that you are notified about it. Examples of insignificant changes include alteration of your accommodation to another of the same or higher standard. If we are forced by circumstances beyond our control to alter significantly any of the main characteristics of the travel services that make up your package you will have the rights set out below.

    2.1 - We will contact you and you will have the choice of accepting the change or having a refund of all monies paid. You can also accept an alternative holiday, where we offer one (we will refund any price difference if the alternative is of a lower value). We will tell you the procedure for making your choice. Please read any notification of changes carefully and respond promptly as if you do not respond to us within the timescale given your booking may be canceled.

    2.2 - If you choose to accept a refund then that is the only liability we have and we will not be liable for any further sums, compensation or otherwise and you are advised to adequately insure yourselves against cancellation for any reason

Please note that insurance premiums and amendments charges are not refundable in any circumstances. 

Once you have put down a deposit for a tour, you are unable to cancel and re-book within a promotional period and we reserve the right to amend the pricing on any new booking you make within that time. If you cancel a tour and book the same tour under a promotional code, we reserve the right to decline the booking.

Important Note: Certain arrangements may not be amended after they have been confirmed and any alteration or cancellation could incur a cancellation charge of up to 100% of that part of the arrangements in addition to the charge above.

If the reason for your cancellation is covered under the terms of your insurance policy, you may be able to reclaim these charges.

Where possible, we will deduct the cancellation charge(s) from any monies you have already paid to us.

For more additional details, see the booking conditions of TruTravels at the following web address:

Travel Insurance
We strongly recommend purchasing travel insurance alongside your travel package to safeguard against unforeseen circumstances such as medical expenses, trip cancellations, and other contingencies. It offers you peace of mind and ensures you are prepared for unexpected events that may occur before or during your journey
Visa requirements
Visa requirements vary depending on your country of origin and your country of destination. It is your responsibility to familiarize yourself with the relevant requirements. For a handy tool that can help you quickly find the requirements, please visit this link .
Meals Included
All breakfasts, eight lunches and six dinners included. Hotel breakfasts are normally buffet style, and lunches and dinners at Tortuguero and Esquinas Rainforest Lodge are also buffet style. Vegetarians are well catered for but please inform us before departure of any special dietary requests. Costa Rican specialities include gallo pinto, a black bean and rice dish considered to be a staple part of the local diet. Soups and stews are also common, and fresh fruit is abundant and will no doubt be one of the highlights of your time in the tropics.
Age Requirements
16 years and up
Additional Information
Travel by air-conditioned bus and boat 14 nights in comfortable hotels and eco-lodges Some departures with specialist birdwatching guide Green turtle nesting season: July to October
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