Volcano, Hot Springs, Rainforest, Rivers, Waterfalls, Islands, Beaches, Culture!
You'll maximize your chances to see wildlife and truly experience the culture in the company of your own bilingual naturalist guide/driver for 6 of the 10 days of this trip. Price per person:
Day 1: Welcome to Costa Rica!
An ACTUAR representative will meet your flight and take you to a charming San José hotel. If you have time, visit the excellent National Museum.
Day 2: Visit Arenal Volcano and soak in the hot springs!
Your bilingual naturalist guide/driver will pick you up in the morning. Set out for active Arenal Volcano. The volcano usually explodes several times a day, sending up a cloud of smoke The trip to La Fortuna, the town to the east of the volcano, is very picturesque, with views of dairy farms and local agriculture. Stop for a breather in Zarcero, known for the topiary gardens in front of its church. When you arrive at Arenal Oasis Lodge, the owners will greet you and orient you to their nature trails, frog ponds and wildlife exhibits. Go for a relaxing soak at the hot springs that night. Overnight at Arenal Oasis or similar, breakfast and dinner included.
Day 3: Enjoy Arenal
Today is free to enjoy optional activities like a visit to Arenal Volcano National Park, hiking at Arenal Hanging Bridges, white water rafting or a canopy zipline tour. Overnight at Arenal Oasis Lodge, breakfast included.
Day 4: Climb into the rainforest of the Karen Mogensen Reserve
Your guide will take you to one of the Nicoya Peninsula's hidden jewels, the Karen Mogensen Reserve: 2224 acres of tropical forest with the 75-foot) Bridal Veil Falls, natural swimming holes, and wonderful trails through primary rainforest. Cerro Escondido Lodge is in a hidden valley in the middle of the Reserve. Here you can disconnect from everything and find yourself again amidst the sounds of the forest. Don Arnulfo will be your guide to reconnecting with the essence of life in nature. You can only get to Cerro Escondido by hiking an hour and a half uphill through the forest. Overnight at Cerro Escondido Lodge. All meals included.
Day 5: Swim in the waterfall pools!
Climb up to the mirador to watch the sunrise over the Gulf of Nicoya, if you like. After a delicious country-style breakfast, go hiking in the forest or have a picnic lunch at the waterfall pools. Overnight at Cerro Escondido Lodge, all meals included.
Day 6:Learn about island culture at the Isla de Chira
Your adventure continues in the Gulf of Nicoya, where a local guide will take you by boat past impressive mangrove swamps to the Isla de Chira. You'll visit Isla Paloma, a sanctuary for aquatic birds. Isla de Chira is a great place to go biking. You can pedal to Playa Romántica to watch the sunset. Stay overnight at La Amistad Inn and listen to the fisherwomen tell their stories. All meals included.
Day 7:Discover the beaches of the Nicoya Peninsula.
After a hearty breakfast, take the boat back to the mainland. Your guide will take you to the friendly Hotel Fénix in Playa Sámara on the Nicoya Peninsula. The owners of the hotel keep themselves informed about turtle nesting activity in this area, and will let you know if the season and moon phase are right to observe nesting turtles that night (turtle tour not included). Your guide will take you to buy groceries--your cabin is equipped with a kitchen. That afternoon, say goodbye to your guide.
Day 8: Relax at the beach!
Enjoy the reef-protected beach at Playa Sámara. No riptides here! Take a surfing lesson, go kayaking, or just relax in a hammock. Overnight at Hotel Fénix. No meals included.
Day 9: Back to the Central Valley or Liberia
Take the Interbus to San José, about 6 hours away. Stay in a charming hotel. No meals included.
Day 10: Come back soon!
Breakfast and transport to the airport for your flight home.
All tours can be customized to meet your travel rhythm, your interests, and your budget.
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