Costa Rica - Pura Vida (BBC Earth Journey)
8 days with Tauck Rating:
Day 1 Welcome to Costa Rica
Tour begins: 5:00 PM, Hotel Grano de Oro. A transfer is included from San José's Juan Santamaria International Airport to Hotel Grano de Oro in Costa Rica's capital city, San José. Meet your fellow eco-adventurers at this evening's welcome reception followed by dinner at your hotel. (D)
Day 2 Glittering gold, toucans & on to Arenal
Kick off your Costa Rica travel today with a visit and guided tour of the San José's Museo del Oro (Gold Museum), home to a priceless collection of thousands of gold artifacts and artworks from the pre-Columbian period. Then head to the Toucan Rescue Center, where you'll tour the facilities and meet some of the toucans, sloths, monkeys and other wildlife the center's staff cares for. Enjoy lunch at a local restaurant before departing San José and traveling to the Arenal region for a two-night stay at Tabacon Grand Spa Thermal Resort. (B, L, D)
Day 3 River float trip & thermal resort leisure
Your Costa Rica travel adventure continues in the jungle today with a float trip* down the scenic Peñas Blancas River aboard a raft; your bilingual guide helps you look for wildlife ranging from sloths to crocodiles to giant iguanas along the shore. Visit a farming family who have lived on the river all their lives, like their ancestors before them, without modern technologies. Return to your thermal resort in the heart of one of Costa Rica's most richly diverse ecosystems for lunch, followed by a free afternoon to enjoy the resort's hot springs and other amenities. Join us for dinner tonight at a local restaurant. (B, L, D)
Day 4 Zip lining at Arenal & on to Monteverde
Today starts off with an extraordinary bird's-eye view of cone-shaped Arenal Volcano, an actively "restless" volcano, on a thrilling zip-line ride* at Sky Trek Adventure Park – one of the world's most highly regarded zip line operations – where you'll soar over and through the canopy of rainforest treetops! (Those not into zip lining can take a nature walk instead.) After lunch at a local restaurant, drive to rest stop, "El Dos," and enjoy a Sugar cane demonstration with some samplings of fresh sugar cane juice and moonshine to taste before heading off for Monteverde, where you'll spend the next three nights in the heart of the cloud forest at Monteverde Lodge. (B, L, D)
Day 5 A walk through the canopy, butterflies & more
An exciting day of biodiversity awaits in Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve. First, join two of Costa Rica's foremost naturalists for a memorable walk through the cloud forest canopy at the Selvatura Hanging Bridges, as they provide an incredible overview of the cloud forest ecosystem. After lunch and some free time back at your resort, see more than 50 of over an estimated 1,000 native Costa Rican butterfly species, including the stunning blue morpho, at the reserve's enclosed Butterfly Garden; our naturalists pass along their expert insights on the butterflies' complex life cycles. Continue on to Sofia and join us at a local restaurant featuring eclectic Costa Rican and fusion cuisine in a lovely tropical setting, for a private lecture by one of the Monteverde Reserve's naturalists, followed by dinner. Tonight, relax amidst the orchid-filled gardens of your eco-lodge, where your room boasts bay windows looking out on the cloud forest! (B, L, D)
Day 6 King Coffee & free time at your resort
Rise early and head to Monteverde Reserve for a guided walk through the reserve with a naturalist. Then... there's nothing like fine Costa Rican gourmet coffee... and today you'll get to see how it's produced, from the seed to the cup, with your local guide on a private tour of the Don Juan Coffee Plantation; learn about the various stages of coffee cultivation and production and its importance to Costa Rican history, and have lunch. Following an afternoon spent relaxing or enjoying free time as you please back at Monteverde Lodge, you may want to join us for an optional nighttime nature walk; because most of the cloud forest's animals are nocturnal, it's a wonderful opportunity to view wildlife that are typically asleep during the day. Have dinner at the lodge tonight. (B, L, D)
Day 7 Return to San José & celebrate chocolate
Depart Monteverde today and return to the capital city of San José, arriving in time for lunch at your hotel. After checking in and spending some free time at the hotel, head over to Sibu, a noted artisan chocolatier, where you'll learn everything you ever wanted to know about chocolate! Observe the natural process of transforming the cacao fruit into chocolate during a demonstration (with a little tasting, of course), and say goodbye to your memorable Costa Rica trip at a farewell reception followed by dinner. (B, L, D)
Day 8 Journey Home
Tour ends: San José. A transfer is included from the InterContinental Costa Rica to San José's Juan Santamaria International Airport. Allow 3 hours for flight check-in. (B)
All This Included
Naturally Inspiring… There are wonders to behold at every turn in Costa Rica, from nature’s exquisitely adorned treasures to man-made gems glittering in gold. Sugar-sand beaches kiss aquamarine seas. Jeweled hummingbirds, candy-striped toucans and equally resplendent Quetzals flirt with porcelain-winged butterflies dressed in electric blue...
A place where jungles run wild and volcanoes simmer, Costa Rican landscapes also play host to coffee plantations, richly rewarding; pineapple plantations, organically inspired; gardens, butterfly-filled, in a cloud forest... and eco-resorts, naturally nurturing. Spending a week here is an adventure that touches body, mind and soul with zip-lining and horseback rides, float trips on jungle rivers and a lake cruise, insider visits to a farmer’s home on a jungle river, a coffee farm and a farewell celebration at an artisan chocolatier in San José, all from equally colorful Costa Rican hideaways that promise an authentic glimpse of paradise.
EXPERIENCE WITH TAUCK
TAUCK VALUE INCLUDES
San Jose: Hotel Grano de Oro
Arenal: Tabacon Grand Spa Thermal Resort
Monteverde: Monteverde Lodge
Terms and Conditions
For Tauck terms and conditions, please click here.
* The prices shown are U.S. dollars per person, based on double occupancy, and subject to availability. Prices quoted for land/cruise arrangements are subject to increase without notice. Once we have received your deposit, land/cruise prices are guaranteed. Air prices quoted via phone or email are subject to increase and are guaranteed only from the time that full payment is received. Also, air prices or air promotions mentioned on this site or on the phone do not include baggage fees imposed by airlines.