Best of Costa Rica

Intrepid Travel Preferred
Has very high quality customer experiences and demonstrated commitment to responsible travel practices. read more
4.6 . Excellent
94%
Travel Style: Array Mixed
Physical Level: All or most of day hiking or biking, hills included. Moderate
Lodging Level: 3 to 4 star western hotel equivalents. While not all lodging will be 'luxury' they will be quite comfortable by western standards. Comfort (4*)
8 days
From: $ 2,890 $ 361 / day
Checking price

Overview

Highlights (Bullets)

  • Take in the atmosphere and culture of San Jose: Costa Rica’s bustling capital nestled between the mountains and volcanoes.
  • Hike to San Pedrillo in Corcovado National Park and explore one of the world's most biodiverse regions.  
  • Swim at white-sand beaches in Manuel Antonio National Park, after searching for exotic birdlife in the depths of the jungle.
  • Learn about the trade of one of Costa Rica’s largest exports: coffee. Take a visit to a family's coffee farm and learn the process from cherry to cup (with a tasting, of course).
  • Discover the diverse and unique wildlife of Costa Rica: butterflies, birds, iguanas, sloths and caimans, to name a few.

Short Description

Nice to meet ya, Costa Rica. Introducing the country encapsulating ‘pura vida’ (the simple life) to the extreme; a laid-back paradise where even the sloths are taking things easier than usual. After soaking up the culture in San Jose, hit the national parks of Corcovado and Manuel Antonio in search of unspoilt rainforest and deserted white-sand beaches. And did we mention the sloths? This is a trip for nature lovers among you: a ‘best of’ trip in Costa Rica, which just happens to quite possibly have the ‘best of’ biodiversity in the whole wide world. You won’t regret it.

Style Small group tour
See all the highlights and popular spots on a classic tour.
Itinerary Focus Classic Highlights
3 to 4 star western hotel equivalents. While not all lodging will be 'luxury' they will be quite comfortable by western standards.
Lodging Level Comfort (4*)
Flight & Transport Inclusions All internal ground transport
Start City San Jose
End City San Jose

Destinations

Costa Rica

Attractions & Cities Visited

N/A

Activities & Interests

Culture Historic sightseeing

Age Requirement

15-99

N/A
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Itinerary

Day 1 San Jose

San Jose is this dreamy country’s capital, a bustling city flanked by mountains to the south and more mountains to the north, with a few volcanoes thrown in for good measure. This rapidly expanding city contains lively markets, historic neighbourhoods and a chorus of beautiful old theatres, with a big chunk of the country’s population living within its boundaries. You’ll get things started with a welcome meeting at 6 pm, after which you can look for your first taste of Costa Rican cuisine in the surrounding streets.

Day 2 Copey de Dota

At 9 am, after breakfast, take a leader-led walking tour of San Jose’s dynamic downtown area (around 1.5 hours). Around 11 am, you’ll take a private vehicle on a 2-hour drive to Costa Rica’s coffee capital, Zona Los Santos in Frailes. Here, visit the Don Cornelio farm, where you’ll learn how this expensive bean makes it from cherry to cup, with lunch and a delicious coffee tasting. In the afternoon, continue driving another 2 hours to Copey de Dota, and along the way, why not learn some Spanish phrases with an informal language lesson from your leader. The locals will love you for it! Spend the evening at a lodge close to the lush cloud forest.

Day 3 Drake Bay

Wake bright and early to depart San Gerardo de Dota at 6am in a private vehicle to visit a small indigenous community. The Térraba, or Teribe, are an indigenous group with a rich cultural heritage. Located on approximately 34.7 square miles (9,000 hectares) along the Térraba River, they have survived off the land for more than 500 years. The community consider themselves Matriarchal and women are the teachers, responsible for passing information down through the generations. Learn how to carve your own wooden mask, and then share a local lunch before travelling to the port. Take a boat trip to the natural beauty of Drake Bay, part of the Osa Peninsula and close to the Corcovado National Park. This is a great time to speak to your group leader about the activities on offer in the Osa Peninsula, including birdwatching, hiking, or snorkelling off the coast. Please note that most of the activities need to be pre-booked, so if there is something you want to tick off your bucket list, it’s best to get in early. With 13 major ecosystems, over 400 species of birds and all the monkeys, turtles and butterflies you’d ever wish to see, Corcovado is a nature-lover's dream. Enjoy dinner at a lodge hidden away in the rainforest.

Day 4 Corcovado / Drake Bay

Wake up in the lush jungle, ready for a hike at San Pedrillo. San Pedrillo is the northernmost park station in Corcovado, and there are multiple hiking trails that you can take, either along the beach or through the forest. Enjoy the sights and sounds of the forest, and maybe spot some spider monkeys, black-cheeked ant tanagers and tapir. Take the chance to cool off in the Pacific shores before heading back to the lodge for lunch. At night, Corcovado comes alive in other ways, with new sights and sounds to be experienced. Consider an optional night jungle Walking tour, where you’ll see a great variety of reptiles, amphibians and insects that aren’t often seen during the day.

Day 5 Manuel Antonio

Depart at 7.30 am to take the boat and then drive 2 hours north to Manuel Antonio, a town nestled by a national park of the same name on Costa Rica’s central Pacific coast. You’ll find yourself in certified sloth country. There’ll be an optional lunch stop on the way and the afternoon is yours to relax. Drop a towel on the white-sand beaches, take a swim or swing life away in a hammock. In the evening, you could choose to enjoy the Pacific sunset from the water on a sail boat, wishing another night away on your Costa Rican adventure.

Day 6 Manuel Antonio

Take today to experience the lush national park surrounding Manuel Antonio. Your park entrance fee is included and joining you will be a naturalist guide with all the info and knowledge that you need, so spend some more time discovering and learning about the beauty of the jungle, keeping an eye out for sloths and iguanas. Wander into the depths of the rainforest, and be aware of where your naturalist guide is telling you to look – they know exactly where to find the weird and wonderful that call this place home. Later in the day, you could book yourself in a kayak tour of the waterways and mangrove habitat, seeing the park from the water. You could also head to one of Manuel Antonio's famed beaches, rent a surfboard and spend some time catching waves in the water, and rays on the sand.

Day 7 San Jose

Good morning from beautiful Manuel Antonio. You'll have a free morning here before you head on your way to Costa Rica's capital. Why not hit the sand and go for a morning swim? Otherwise, the town of Manuel Antonio has some cool hangouts for a coffee. If you'd like to take a morning hike through the national park, we don't blame you! Please be aware that you'll have to cover your own entrance fees today. Later on, continue back to San Jose, where you'll arrive in the late afternoon. The rest of the evening is free for you relax and pick up where you left off exploring the city, but be sure to catch up with your travel buddies for dinner.

Day 8 San Jose

There are no activities planned, so once you’ve enjoyed your breakfast, you are free to leave at any time. Haven’t seen enough in San Jose? Check out the offerings of Urban Adventures tour, from craft beer tours to day-trips to the countryside. Find out more at urbanadventures.com/destination/San-Jose-tours. There's a lot to see and do in and around San Jose, so if you'd like to extend your visit and need further accommodation, we’ll be happy to assist (subject to availability).

Availability

Checking price
Price From $ 2,890
Price Per Day: $ 361 per day
Checking price
Start DateFinish DateBase PriceAvailability 
Feb-18-2023Feb-25-2023$ 2,890Sold Out Reserve
Mar-11-2023Mar-18-2023$ 2,975Sold Out Reserve
Apr-01-2023Apr-08-2023$ 3,120Sold Out Reserve
May-20-2023May-27-2023$ 2,8909 spots left Reserve
Aug-26-2023Sep-02-2023$ 2,89012 spots left Reserve
Oct-28-2023Nov-04-2023$ 2,89012 spots left Reserve
Nov-25-2023Dec-02-2023$ 3,00010 spots left Reserve
Dec-16-2023Dec-23-2023$ 3,00012 spots left Reserve
Dec-23-2023Dec-30-2023$ 3,00011 spots left Reserve
Jan-20-2024Jan-27-2024$ 2,94512 spots left Reserve
Feb-17-2024Feb-24-2024$ 2,94512 spots left Reserve
Mar-09-2024Mar-16-2024$ 2,94512 spots left Reserve
Mar-30-2024Apr-06-2024$ 2,94512 spots left Reserve
May-18-2024May-25-2024$ 2,94512 spots left Reserve
Aug-24-2024Aug-31-2024$ 2,94512 spots left Reserve
Oct-26-2024Nov-02-2024$ 2,94512 spots left Reserve
Nov-23-2024Nov-30-2024$ 2,94512 spots left Reserve
Dec-14-2024Dec-21-2024$ 2,94512 spots left Reserve
Dec-21-2024Dec-28-2024$ 2,94512 spots left Reserve
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Check Current Availability, prices, specials with Intrepid Travel.

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.

4,186 Intrepid Travel Travel Reviews & Ratings

94%
4.6 out of 5 (100+ reviews)
Excellent 3,164
Great 667
Average 132
Disappointing 66
Terrible 157
Value
4.6
Guide
4.6
Activities
4.6
Lodging
4.6
Transportation
4.6
Meals
4.6

Best of Costa Rica

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Company Reviews

I had a really fun time travelling to…

4.0
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Value4.0
Guide4.0
Activities4.0
Lodging4.0
Transportation4.0
Meals4.0
I had a really fun time travelling to Thailand last December. Intrepid made the entire trip easier because of the preparations they made beforehand. I'm definitely going to recommend Intrepid to my friends. Ciao!
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Viewing wildlife in a natural setting

5.0
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Value5.0
Guide5.0
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Lodging5.0
Transportation5.0
Meals5.0
Viewing wildlife in a natural setting with an experienced naturalist is outstanding

Great trip made better by the guide.

5.0
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Value5.0
Guide5.0
Activities5.0
Lodging5.0
Transportation5.0
Meals5.0
Great trip made better by the guide.

This trip is an excellent mix of cultural experience, adventure and nature.

5.0
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Value5.0
Guide5.0
Activities5.0
Lodging5.0
Transportation5.0
Meals5.0
This trip is an excellent mix of cultural experience, adventure and nature. Nepal is a beautiful country and the people are so warm and approachable. Dal Bhat Power 24 hour!

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This tour of Bali was the perfect mix of culture, adventure and relaxation.

5.0
Details
Value5.0
Guide5.0
Activities5.0
Lodging5.0
Transportation5.0
Meals5.0
This tour of Bali was the perfect mix of culture, adventure and relaxation. Andy was an exceptional leader. If you want more than just resorts when coming to Bali I highly recommend this tour

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Walk the Scenic Rim

5.0
Details
Value5.0
Guide5.0
Activities5.0
Lodging5.0
Transportation5.0
Meals5.0
Had the best time! Over 5 days we hiked up hill, down dale, across creeks and through beautiful pockets of ancient Gondwana rainforest. The scenery was stunning, the company was awesome, and I can't recommend Intrepid Travel (and our tour leader, Joel) highly enough!
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Details

Flight & Transport Inclusions

All internal ground transport Private vehicle,Shared boat

Group Size

Small Group - 24 max

Maximum Number of People in Group: 12

Accommodations

Hotel (4 nights),Lodge (3 nights)

Guides

All group trips are accompanied by one of our group leaders. The aim of the group leader is to take the hassle out of your travels and to help you have the best trip possible. Intrepid endeavours to provide the services of an experienced leader however, due to the seasonality of travel, rare situations may arise where your leader is new to a particular region or training other group leaders. Your leader will provide information on the places you are travelling through, offer suggestions for things to do and see, recommend great local eating venues and introduce you to our local friends. While not being guides in the traditional sense, you can expect them to have a broad general knowledge of the places visited on the trip, including historical, cultural, religious, and social aspects. At Intrepid we aim to support local guides who have specialised knowledge of the regions we visit. If you are interested in delving deeper into the local culture at a specific site or location then your leader can recommend a local guide service in most of the main destinations of your trip.

Age Notes :

Min. Age: 15

Max Age: 99

Additional Information

Finish point

  • Balmoral Hotel
  • Avenida Central between St 7 & 9
  • San Jose
  • 10101
  • COSTA RICA
  • Phone: +506 22225022

Trip ID#:

intrepid-QBKR

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