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Explore Costa Rica
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Costa Rica may be small but it offers big adventure. This two-week tour ventures off the beaten path to a lush and wild world. Stop in at a reforestation project, visit a sea turtle conservancy program, opt to zip-line through the jungle canopy, and have a soak in volcanic hot springs. Riding a wave of “pura vida,” experience pure travel joy.

Latin America
  • Duration: 14 Days
  • Guaranteed Departure: Yes
  • For lovers of:
  • Physical rating: Light
  • Accommodation standard:   Moderate%
  • Traveller Tour Rating: 0%  
  • Your Guide: English speaking
  • Supplier Tour ID: CRENG/155187
  • Starts: San José, Costa Rica
  • Finishes: San José, Costa Rica
You will Visit
  • San José

Itinerary

01

Day 1: San José

Arrive at any time. Arrival transfer included.
If you arrive early enough, you'll have time to head into the city to visit a museum or the main plaza in the city centre.

The plaza is a good place to people-watch. A mime, juggler, marimba band, magician, or storyteller may be performing for whatever is collected when the hat is passed. Artisan booths are common, creating a regular arts and crafts fair atmosphere.

02

Day 2: San José/Tortuguero

Travel to Tortuguero National Park and enjoy guided boat trips and wildlife viewing through the canals and coastal jungle. In leisure time, relax at the secluded lodge or (on this evening) take an optional night boat excursion.
Enjoy a delicious Costa Rican breakfast en route as we transfer by road then boat through the famous canals of Tortuguero. This tropical eco-paradise is home to countless bird and animal species, and you will have many opportunities to view and photograph wildlife.

The tropical rainforest gives way to prime secluded beaches, ideal nesting grounds for green turtles (nesting July through October), loggerhead, hawksbill, and leatherback turtles (nesting March through June). We cannot guarantee you will see turtles, but that odds are fairly good from July through October.

03

Day 3: Tortuguero

Enjoy a guided boat trip and jungle walk. Search for caiman, monkeys (spider, howler, and white-faced capuchin), sloths, and basilisk lizards. Also visit the Sea Turtle Conservancy, a non-profit organization co-founded by Archie Carr, a National Geographic grantee. Learn about the research and conservation initiatives that have been instrumental in saving the Caribbean green turtle from extinction.
There's plenty of opportunity to see a variety of birds, monkeys, and other wildlife. In your downtime, relax at the secluded lodge on a hammock or at the pool or beach. You also have the option to take a kayaking excursion.

04

Day 4: Tortuguero/La Fortuna

Depart early and visit a G Adventures-supported coffee cooperative. Take a tour of the co-op and dig into a local lunch. Arrive in La Fortuna in the evening and relax at the pool as you take in jungle and volcano views.

05

Day 5: La Fortuna

Explore Fortuna with numerous optional activities. In the evening, visit a local home and learn the art of tortilla making. Once the tortillas are ready, dig into a tasty “casado” – a typical Costa Rican dish that's made with black beans, plantains, and your very own tortillas.

06

Day 6: La Fortuna

Free day in La Fortuna. Options include rafting, waterfall rappelling, soaking in local hot springs, or taking a boat tour of the Caño Negro Wildlife Refuge.

07

Day 7: La Fortuna/Monteverde

From La Fortuna, we make our way by road and boat up to the misty mountain air of the Monteverde cloud forest region. Spend two days exploring the town and nearby Forest Reserve, truly a bird lover's paradise.

08

Day 8: Monteverde

Enjoy a nature hike in the Santa Elena Cloud Forest Reserve. You'll also have some free time after to zip line, walk the hanging bridges, or explore the town.

09

Day 9: Monteverde

Visit the Monteverde Institute, which has served as the base for numerous National Geographic funded explorers and researchers studying the famed canopy of the Monteverde Cloud Forest. Enjoy a lecture by one of the researchers before playing an active role in this project, visiting the National Geographic sponsored research plot and planting trees, assisting in the nurseries, or collecting data.
Enjoy free time to explore all that Monteverde has to offer. Saddle up and go horseback riding, zip line through the jungle canopy, wobble bravely over suspension bridges, or visit the butterfly garden and take close-up photos.

10

Day 10: Monteverde/Manuel Antonio

Drive to Manuel Antonio. Enjoy the laid-back atmosphere of the Pacific coast with options to surf, go horseback riding, or visit nearby picturesque beaches.
The white-sand beaches and warm Pacific waters are the ideal atmosphere to relax at the end of your adventure. If you opt to chill out at the beach, be sure to walk out into the sea on the incredible natural sand formation that is shaped like a whale's tale when the tide goes out.

11

Day 11: Manuel Antonio

Take an included day trip to Manuel Antonio National Park. After enjoy free time at the beach.

12

Day 12: Manuel Antonio

Free time to explore Manuel Antonio and the National Park with option to surf, go horseback riding, or visit nearby picturesque beaches.

13

Day 13: Manuel Antonio/San José

Return to San José for an optional farewell dinner with the group.

14

Day 14: San José

Depart at any time.
Departure day, depart at any time.

Inclusions:
    Activities
    • National Geographic Journeys Exclusives: Visit the Sea Turtle Conservancy, Tortuguero National Geographic Journeys Exclusives: Tortilla Making and Home Dinner, La Fortuna National Geographic Journeys Exclusives: Monteverde Institute Lecture & Reforestation Project, Monteverde G Adventures for Good: Mi Cafecito Coffee Cooperative Tour, Sarapiquí
    • Arrival transfer
    • Boat tour and wildlife viewing in Tortuguero National Park
    • Guided nature walk in the Santa Elena Cloud Forest Reserve
    • Guided excursion to Manuel Antonio National Park
    • All transport between destinations and to/from included activities
    Accommodation
    • Hotels (11 nts), rustic jungle lodge (2 nts)
    • 13 breakfasts, 3 lunches, 3 dinners
    Transport
    • Private vehicle, shuttle van, boat, walking
    Group Leader
    • Chief Experience Officer (CEO) throughout, local guides
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Tour Highlights:
  • Hear a lecture from a researcher at the Monteverde Institute
  • Learn how to make tortillas during a visit to a local family home
  • Spot wildlife while cruising the canals of Tortuguero
  • Enjoy spectacular volcano views while soaking in hot springs
  • Learn all about sea turtles with an expert from the Sea Turtle Conservancy