38 days in Costa Rica Itinerary

38 days in Costa Rica Itinerary

Created using Inspirock Costa Rica attractions planner

Make it your trip
Fly
1
Playa Flamingo
— 6 nights
Drive
2
Liberia
— 3 nights
Drive
3
Monteverde
— 4 nights
Drive
4
Jaco
— 3 nights
Drive
5
Manuel Antonio
— 4 nights
Drive
6
Drake Bay
— 5 nights
Drive
7
Puerto Viejo de Talamanca
— 3 nights
Drive
8
Tortuguero
— 3 nights
Drive
9
La Fortuna de San Carlos
— 4 nights
Drive
10
Vara Blanca
— 2 nights
Drive to Juan Santamaría International Airport, Fly to Montreal

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Playa Flamingo

— 6 nights

White Beach

The white sand beach of Playa Flamingo has become a go-to tourist getaway by the sea.
Spend the 13th (Mon) exploring nature at Las Baulas National Marine Park. And it doesn't end there: get up close to creatures of the deep with a dolphin and whale watching tour, visit Playa Ocotal, kick back and relax at Playa Conchal, and tee off at Garra de Leon Golf Course.

To see reviews, other places to visit, more things to do, and tourist information, you can read our Playa Flamingo trip builder app.

Montreal, Canada to Playa Flamingo is an approximately 8.5-hour flight. You can also drive. The time zone difference when traveling from Montreal to Playa Flamingo is minus 1 hour. Prepare for warmer weather when traveling from Montreal in December: high temperatures in Playa Flamingo hover around 32°C and lows are around 32°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 15th (Wed) early enough to drive to Liberia.

Things to do in Playa Flamingo

Outdoors · Parks · Nature · Wildlife

Side Trips

Find places to stay Dec 9 — 15:

Liberia

— 3 nights

White City

Tourism in Liberia has been growing since the opening of its airport, with more and more international visitors using the city as a starting point for explorations of the country's northwest.
Change things up with a short trip to Shark Diving in Playas del Coco (about 40 minutes away). Spend the 16th (Thu) among the fascinating landscape of Parque Nacional Rincon de la Vieja. There's still lots to do: relax in the rural setting at Tio Leo Coffee Tour,a real cultural experience, take in the dramatic scenery at Cataratas Llanos de Cortes, and steep yourself in history at Church of La Ermita La Agonia.

To find traveler tips, maps, reviews, and tourist information, read Liberia attractions website.

Getting from Playa Flamingo to Liberia by car takes about 1.5 hours. Other options: take a bus. In December, daytime highs in Liberia are 32°C, while nighttime lows are 32°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 18th (Sat) to allow time to drive to Monteverde.

Things to do in Liberia

Parks · Nature · Museums · Wildlife

Side Trips

Find places to stay Dec 15 — 18:

Monteverde

— 4 nights
Monteverde is all about natural attractions, not surprising for an eco-tourism hotspot known for its cloud forests and rich diversity of animal life.
Monteverde is known for adventure, parks, and nightlife. Your trip includes some of its best attractions: stroll through Monteverde Cloud Forest Biological Reserve, kick your exploration up a notch at some of the top local zipline courses and adventure parks, get to know the resident critters at The Bat Jungle, and delve into the lush surroundings at Curi Cancha Reserve.

To see where to stay, reviews, and tourist information, read our Monteverde trip itinerary maker site.

Traveling by car from Liberia to Monteverde takes 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of bus and taxi. In December, daytime highs in Monteverde are 32°C, while nighttime lows are 32°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 22nd (Wed) to allow time to drive to Jaco.

Things to do in Monteverde

Parks · Wildlife · Tours · Fun & Games
Find places to stay Dec 18 — 22:

Jaco

— 3 nights
A seaside resort town with plenty of entertaining distractions along its attractive coastline, Jaco has long been a major tourist destination on the central Pacific coast.
Jaco is known for adventure, beaches, and classes. Your trip includes some of its best attractions: kick your exploration up a notch at some of the top local zipline courses and adventure parks, take a pleasant ride with a tour on horseback, kick back and relax at Jaco Beach, and head outdoors with Outdoor Activities.

For where to stay, other places to visit, photos, and more tourist information, refer to the Jaco trip itinerary builder tool.

You can drive from Monteverde to Jaco in 2.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a shuttle; or take a bus. Finish your sightseeing early on the 25th (Sat) so you can drive to Manuel Antonio.

Things to do in Jaco

Outdoors · Tours · Wildlife · Adventure
Find places to stay Dec 22 — 25:

Manuel Antonio

— 4 nights
The rainforest meets the sea at Manuel Antonio National Park, a small but scenic natural preserve on the west coast of Costa Rica.
Step out of Manuel Antonio with an excursion to Parque Nacional Marino Ballena in Uvita--about 1h 15 min away. And it doesn't end there: kick back and relax at Playa Manuel Antonio, get outside with Outdoor Activities, get a dose of the wild on a nature and wildlife tour, and indulge in some personalized pampering at some of the best spas.

To find other places to visit, ratings, where to stay, and more tourist information, you can read our Manuel Antonio online trip planner.

You can drive from Jaco to Manuel Antonio in 1.5 hours. Another option is to take a bus. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 29th (Wed) early enough to drive to Drake Bay.

Things to do in Manuel Antonio

Outdoors · Beaches · Parks · Tours

Side Trips

Find places to stay Dec 25 — 29:

Drake Bay

— 5 nights
Venture out of the city with trips to Quebrada Cuervo (in Loma) and Puerto Jimenez (Osa Wild & Rancho Raices de Osa). Spend a day of island exploring on the 30th (Thu) at Cano Island.

To see traveler tips and tourist information, you can read our Drake Bay trip planner.

You can drive from Manuel Antonio to Drake Bay in 4 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of bus and ferry; or take a bus. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 3rd (Mon) early enough to drive to Puerto Viejo de Talamanca.

Things to do in Drake Bay

Wildlife · Parks · Outdoors · Tours

Side Trips

Find places to stay Dec 29 — Jan 3:

Puerto Viejo de Talamanca

— 3 nights

Walaba

Puerto Viejo de Talamanca offers a wealth of entertainment by the sea, attracting a lively international crowd of revelers while maintaining a bright and breezy coastal charm with a local feel.
Spend the 4th (Tue) exploring nature at Cahuita National Park. There's still lots to do: get outside with Outdoor Activities, stroll through Playa Punta Uva, and enjoy the sand and surf at Playa Puerto Viejo.

For ratings, photos, traveler tips, and more tourist information, use the Puerto Viejo de Talamanca trip planner.

Drive from Drake Bay to Puerto Viejo de Talamanca in 7.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus; or do a combination of ferry and bus. Cap off your sightseeing on the 6th (Thu) early enough to go by car to Tortuguero.

Things to do in Puerto Viejo de Talamanca

Parks · Outdoors · Beaches · Nature

Side Trip

Find places to stay Jan 3 — 6:

Tortuguero

— 3 nights

Costa Rica's Amazon

One of Costa Rica's least accessible destinations, Tortuguero sits within an eponymous national park and remains accessible only by plane or boat.
Step out of Tortuguero to go to Puerto Limon and see Zipline, which is approximately 3h 15 min away. Spend the 7th (Fri) exploring nature at Tortuguero National Park. There's more to do: get a new perspective on nature at Sea Turtle Conservancy and see exotic creatures in open habitats at Jungle Tom Safaris Day Tours.

For more things to do, ratings, traveler tips, and more tourist information, read our Tortuguero road trip site.

Traveling by car from Puerto Viejo de Talamanca to Tortuguero takes 4.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a shuttle; or take a bus. In January in Tortuguero, expect temperatures between 33°C during the day and 24°C at night. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 9th (Sun) to allow time to drive to La Fortuna de San Carlos.

Things to do in Tortuguero

Parks · Nature · Outdoors · Tours

Side Trip

Find places to stay Jan 6 — 9:

La Fortuna de San Carlos

— 4 nights
Set against the backdrop of the imposing Arenal Volcano, La Fortuna de San Carlos offers visitors a chance to explore diverse natural landscapes and sample some delicious local produce.
La Fortuna de San Carlos is known for nature, adventure, and parks. Your trip includes some of its best attractions: let the river carry you with a rafting and tubing tour, take in the dramatic scenery at La Fortuna Waterfall, witness a stunning natural landmark at Tabacon Hot Springs, and get outside with Outdoor Activities.

For traveler tips, reviews, more things to do, and more tourist information, go to the La Fortuna de San Carlos trip planner.

Drive from Tortuguero to La Fortuna de San Carlos in 3.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a shuttle; or do a combination of taxi and bus. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 13th (Thu) early enough to drive to Vara Blanca.

Things to do in La Fortuna de San Carlos

Parks · Nature · Outdoors · Tours

Side Trip

Find places to stay Jan 9 — 13:

Vara Blanca

— 2 nights
A vacation in Vara Blanca, located in the heart of Costa Rica, offers excellent access to a number of attractions across the area.
Start off your visit on the 14th (Fri): take in the dramatic scenery at Jardins da Cachoeira de La Paz and then take in the dramatic scenery at La Paz Waterfall and Peace Lodge Gardens.

To find maps, other places to visit, more things to do, and other tourist information, use the Vara Blanca visit planning app.

Traveling by car from La Fortuna de San Carlos to Vara Blanca takes 2 hours. Alternatively, you can do a combination of bus and taxi; or do a combination of bus and taxi. On the 15th (Sat), you're off to home.

Things to do in Vara Blanca

Parks · Nature · Wildlife
Find places to stay Jan 13 — 15:
Highlights from your trip

Costa Rica travel guide

4.5
Beaches · Nature & Parks · Zipline
Tiny in terms of land area, Costa Rica is astoundingly diverse when it comes to culture and natural attractions. In a country called "Rich Coast", it's no surprise most Costa Rica vacations dedicate at least a few days to picturesque Pacific and Caribbean beaches, ideal for water sports and relaxation. Few small countries offer such a range of landscapes, allowing tourists to observe towering volcanoes while soaking away their worries in a hot spring, or hike into dense rainforests in the morning and surf at a modern resort in the afternoon. A trip to Costa Rica also lets you discover pristine national parks, ensuring plenty of chances to view wildlife from the comfort of eco-friendly lodges packed with amenities even ardent nature lovers secretly desire.