Costa Rica

Nature, Wilderness and Culture

Level

Easy – Moderate

Duration

11 days

Costa Rica is a rugged, rain forested Central American country with coastlines on the Caribbean and Pacific. Though its capital, San Jose, is home to cultural institutions like the Pre-Columbian Gold Museum, Costa Rica is known for its beaches, volcanoes, and bio diversity. Roughly a quarter of its area is made up of protected jungle, teeming with wildlife including spider monkeys and quetzal birds.

Your adventure starts with a short boat ride  which takes you to Tortuguero, after you settle at your hotel you will enjoy a lesusre walk to a local village and get a taste of local living; you will kayak  through the gentle rivers and canals of Tortuguero National Park; you will explore   the wildlife-rich Tortuguero rainforest canals by boat.  This tour will allow you the chance to see a large diversity of bird species, monkeys, sloths, crocodiles, and iguanas. Your next stop is Arenal  -a  picturesque region with  natural beauty, amazing wildlife and plenty of outdoor activities. You will enjoy a chocolate plantatin visit and  learn the history of cacao;  you will have the chance to see, taste, drink and feel all the stages of the chocolate process; you will embark on Arenal Observatory Lodge Trails Walk and explore  the heart of one of Costa Rica’s largest natural areas; you will  experience life in the Costa Rican countryside with a farming family that grow typical crops and are practicing newer sustainable agricultural techniques; enjoy a visit to the Ecotermales Hot Springs-family-run hot springs resort featuring volcanically heated pools ranging. Your journey contunies from Arenal to Rincon de la Vieja area, with a  stop at Llano de Cortez waterfall- one of Costa Rica’s most scenic waterfalls; you will hike in Rincón de la Vieja National Park-located in the northwest zone of the Guanacaste region and offers a wonderful opportunity to walk in a Dry Tropical Forest. Your last destination is  Samara- sunny town with pristine beaches and picture-perfect scenery.You will enjoy kayak and snorkeling Tour in  Chora Island and explore the underwater world wonders from fish of all colors to octopus or blowfish and turtles.

Facts:

Activities: hiking, boating, kayaking, snorkeling, cultural interaction, cultural sightseeing, swimming

Our operation:

All Rahhalah’s ground handlers and guides are locally employed ensuring more authentic experience for travelers, as well as sensitivity and understanding of the local culture and environment.

Our staff is highly experienced and has excellent knowledge, committed to provide exceptional service at all times.

  • Sustainability:

    • We run a low impact operation and we leave no traces behind, contributing to the efforts of protection of the local land, its people and culture.
    • We are committed to employing local people to the maximum extent possible. We pay our staff well and, just as important, we provide them with periodical training. In addition we emphasize on making extensive use of local products and enhance maximum economic benefits to the local communities.
    • As you all know 1% of our revenue go back to a local cause and Rahhalah directly takes care of that. This is our pay back promise.

DETAILED ITINERARY

DAY 01: 17th Aug 18 ARRIVAL TRANSFER SAN JOSE INTL. AIRPORT

Arrival at San Jose Intl. Airport, upon your arrival in San José, Costa Rica and after passing through immigration you will be met by a member of the National Chamber of Tourism (CANATUR) who will give you a sticker that will facilitate our representative to identify you after exit the Airport building. As you exit the airport you will be met and transferred to your hotel.

Early evening join your guide for an orientation briefing where you will have the opportunity to get an overview of the following day’s activities, ask questions to prepare for the trip.   

Overnight: DON CARLOS or similar

Day 02: 18th Aug 18 PRIVATE LAND AND BOAT TRANSFER SAN JOSE-TORTUGUERO (B, L, D)

This morning you will be picked up in San Jose by your guide and driver for a drive through the magnificent Braulio Carrillo National Park on the Limon Highway.  Once in the town of Guapiles, you will deviate towards La Pavona dock where you will board a boat for transfer to your hotel in Tortuguero, the boat ride will be approximately 1 hour. Upon arrival lunch will be served at the Lodge. In the afternoon your guide will take you to the town for a leisurely walk where you will get a taste of local living.

Overnight EVERGREEN LODGE or similar

Approx duration: Tortuguero Canals Boat Tour- approx. 2 hours / Tortuguero Village Visit, approx. 1.5 hours

Day 03: 19th Aug 18 TORTUGUERO NATIONAL PARK KAYAK AND BOAT TOURS (B, L, D)

Perhaps the best way to enjoy the gentle rivers and canals of Tortuguero National Park is by touring them quietly in a kayak.   Tortuguero is a vast wilderness park without roads-travel within the park is either on foot on the low land or by water along the interconnecting system of rivers and canals.  Here wildlife is abundant and includes monkeys, water and forest birds, basilisk lizards, iguanas, and more. Your guided tour will begin by boat from your hotel dock and bring you to board the kayaks for a 2 hour tour. 

In the afternoon, you will enjoy the wildlife-rich Tortuguero touring the navigable rainforest canals by boat.  This tour will allow you the chance to see a large diversity of bird species, monkeys, sloths, crocodiles, and iguanas.

Tortuguero National Park is known as Costa Rica’s “little Amazon”. There are no roads – travel is by boat along a series of rivers and canals or by foot on forest paths.  The park consists of a network of waterways surrounded by a vast tropical rainforest and is one of the best places to observe wildlife in Costa Rica. Tortuguero is a must for visitors who want to experience the amazing wonders of the tropical rainforest!  In Tortuguero visitors will likely see 2 or 3 species of monkeys, iguanas, crested basilisk lizards (they look like miniature dinosaurs!), sloths, lots of water birds, toucans, parrots, parakeets, caiman (cousins of alligators), and possibly crocodiles, as well as colorful tropical forest birds around the hotel and the forests along the canals.

Overnight EVERGREEN LODGE or similar

Approx duration: Kayak Tour Tortuguero Canals, approx. 2 hours /Mawamba Trail Walk, approx. 30 – 45 minutes / Tortuguero Canals Boat Tour, approx. 2 hours

Day 04: 20th Aug 18 PRIVATE BOAT AND LAND TRANSFER TORTUGUERO - ARENAL / COSTA RICA BEST CHOCOLATE TOUR (B, L, D)

After breakfast, board the boat to bring you back to La Pavona dock in Guapiles where your private driver will be waiting for you to take you to your hotel in Arenal. You will stop for lunch along the way at a local restaurant. Total transfer time will be approximately 3.5 hours (including the boat ride) plus any stops on the way. 

Arenal is one of the most popular destinations in Costa Rica. The volcano, although inactive for the past few years, is a majestic site. This picturesque region offers natural beauty, amazing wildlife and plenty of outdoor activities for visitors including hiking trails, the famous La Fortuna Waterfall, zip-line tours, rafting, canopy bridge walks, waterfall canyoning, organic farm tours and more. There are also a variety of relaxing hot springs with warm soothing waters heated by the volcano.

The chocolate tour is an educational and enjoyable activity, for all ages, this two hours will start in the 2 acres of cacao plantation, learn all about the cacao plant, flowers and pollination, and then to the Cacao Rancho in the middle of the RESERVA CURARE (Private protected forest), the Rancho has room for 50 sitting people, it is only 150 meters from the route 4 at Chilamate, starting to learn the history of cacao you will have the chance to see, taste, drink and feel all the stages of the chocolate process, expert naturalist guides and a person in charge of the cooking and manipulation of the edible samples of chocolate.

Overnight: ARENAL OBSERVATORY LODGE or similar

Approx duration: Chocolate Tour Sarapiqui-approx. 2 hours/ Arenal Observatory Lodge Twilight Tour, approx. 1.5 – 2 hours

Day 05: 21st Aug 18 ARENAL OBSERVATORY TRAILS WALK/ ARENAL VIDA CAMPESINA ORGANIC FARM TOUR / ECOTERMALES FORTUNA HOT SPRINGS (B, L, D)

Arenal Observatory Lodge lies in the heart of one of Costa Rica’s largest natural areas. Howler monkeys call from the forest and the rich volcanic soil supports primary and secondary rainforest teeming with butterflies, mammals, reptiles and 400 species of birds. Seven miles of manicured, well-marked walking, bike and horseback riding trail system traverses the property and provides safe, easy access to breathtaking natural beauty. The trails are never crowded. There is a hanging bridge, waterfall, Cerro Chato crater lake or hardened lava flow to explore! Your guide will help interpret the lush landscape and stop along the way to discuss the volcano, flora and fauna.

Optional activities: horse riding, biking, zip line canopy tour

Arenal Vida Campesina lets you experience life in the Costa Rican countryside with a farming family that grow typical crops and are practicing newer sustainable agricultural techniques. The tour begins with a demonstration of sugarcane juice production using a manually-operated sugar mill.  Then continue into the cultivated sections of the farm where visitors will see and learn about common Costa Rican crops such as coffee, bananas, plantains, sugar cane, etc. Also on the farm are various animals, whose organic waste is converted to biogas and an organic foliar fertilizer.  At the end of the tour, you will enjoy a traditional lunch with freshly harvested vegetables. Lunch includes a hands-on demonstration on tortilla making!

Enjoy a visit to the Ecotermales Hot Springs. This is a family-run hot springs resort featuring volcanically heated pools ranging. To assure personal service, several family members attend to the needs of visiting guests. The facility offers separate changing rooms for women and men each equipped with hot showers, lockers and toilets. The subtle landscaping includes regenerating forest and attractive tropical plants.

Overnight: ARENAL OBSERVATORY LODGE or similar

Approx duration: Arenal Observatory Lodge Trails Walk approx. 2 – 3 hours / Arenal Vida Campesina Organic Farm Tour and Lunch approx. 2.5 hours /Fortuna Waterfall Hike, approx. 1.5 hours /Ecotermales Hot Springs, 2 -3 hours

Day 06: 22nd Aug 18 PRIVATE LAND TRANSFER ARENAL-RINCON DE LA VIEJA / LLANOS DE CORTEZ WATERFALL (B, L, D)

Today you will travel from Arenal to Rincon de la Vieja area, en route your guide will stop at Llano de Cortez waterfall, this is one of Costa Rica’s most scenic waterfalls, just a short drive from Liberia. The waterfall is about 40 feet tall and 50 feet wide, creating a gorgeous veil of white water streaming over the rocks. Adventurous visitors can climb behind the falls to sit on the rocks looking outward through the veil, and the warm pool is perfect for wading, swimming and standing under the cascade of water.

Overnight: HACIENDA GUACHIPELIN or similar

Approx duration: Llanos de Cortez Waterfall Visit  1 – 2 hours

Day 07: 23rd Aug 18 RINCON DE LA VIEJA NATIONAL PARK (B, L, D)

Today enjoy a hike with your private guide in Rincón de la Vieja National Park. Located in the northwest zone of the Guanacaste region and offers a wonderful opportunity to walk in a Dry Tropical Forest. It supports one of the largest populations of the Guaria Morada orchid (the national flower of Costa Rica), and some very old trees. The mountain is home to about three hundred bird species, many butterflies, and mammals.  Hike to the active fumaroles and stop to see the erupting mud cones.

Overnight: HACIENDA GUACHIPELIN or simila

Approx duration :Rincon de la Vieja National Park Tour  3 – 4 hours

Day 08: 24th Aug 18 PRIVATE LAND TRANSFER RICON DE LA VIEJA- SAMARA / GUAITIL VILLAGE POTTERY TOUR (B, L)

Today your guide and driver will take you to your last destination Samara one of the beautiful beaches in Guanacaste, en route you will stop at the tiny village of Guaitil, situated along the old route between Nicoya and Santa Cruz. The town of Guaitil is famous throughout Costa Rica and the rest of Central America because of its pre-Columbian Chorotega style pottery. Local potters use the traditions and techniques of their ancestors to produce ceramics that are used in the village and sold to tourists visiting the region. The native Chorotegas are one of the main indigenous cultures in Costa Rica, and the entire town of Guaitil is dedicated to the pottery trade, using clay from the area. The secrets of the craft have been passed on through the generations and have created an economic system that can support the people of the village.

Overnight: NAMMBÚ or similar

Approx duration: Guaitil Village, approx. 1.5 – 2 hours

Day 09: 25th Aug 18 SAMARA BEACHES EXPLORATION (B, L)

Sitting along the southern Pacific coast of the Nicoya Peninsula in the province of Guanacaste, Samara is small sunny town with pristine beaches and picture-perfect scenery. The town is both a popular beach resort community as well as a major component to the cattle and fishing industry in Costa Rica. Samara is considered to be one of the safest beaches, making it an ideal location for family and friends getaways. 

Samara and its surrounding environment offer tourists an ideal place to relax and have a good time. Here, a variety of exotic plants and animals can be found along the five kilometer strip of Samara Beach, along with a stunning coral reef that lies just offshore. In town, you will find everything from a supermarket to a number of gift stores, bars and nightclubs as well. Samara is perfect for a quiet holiday or a night out on the town, and an excellent place to use as a stopover for the nearby national parks and reserves.

Overnight: NAMMBÚ or similar

Day 10: 26th Aug 18 CHORA ISLAND KAYAK AND SNORKELING TOUR (B, L)

Today we will take you to the south of Samara beach where the journey begins. Our staff will provide you with paddling instructions and safety gear before cross the ocean heading to this impressive island. While snorkeling you will enjoy the underwater world wonders from fish of all colors to octopus or blowfish and turtles. The guides will prepare fresh fruits and drinks for you while telling about interesting facts of the area. After this lifetime experience you will paddle back to shore where our driver will take you back to your hotel.

Overnight: NAMMBÚ or similar

Approx duration: Kayak and Snorkeling Tour Chora Island, approx. 3.5 hours

Day 11: 27th Aug 18 DEPARTURE TRANSFER SAN JOSE INTL. AIRPORT (B)

Pick up at your hotel for a departure transfer to Liberia or San Jose International Airport for your international flight. Check in 3 hours prior to your scheduled flight time.   

3,000 USD

per person in a group of min 6 pax. Double occupancy.

Trip Dates

17 August 2018

Notes:

  • This cost is based on Double Occupancy. Single Supplement Applies.
  • This cost is subject to 5 % VAT
  • All services stipulated above are subject to availability at the time of booking / reservation. All prices are subject to change.

This includes:

  • Airport transfers
  • Transport as described
  • Accommodation as described based on double occupancy
  • Guiding
  • Activities as described
  • Meals as described B, L, D

This excludes:

  • International flights
  • Visa fees
  • Travel Insurance
  • Single Supplement
  • Meals not mentioned above
  • Optional activities
  • Beverages
  • Tips and gratuities
  • Personal expenses
  • UAE 5% VAT on the total cost

 

Important: The itinerary and schedule are subject to change due to weather, road condition and operating conditions. In any case the guide has the RIGHT to change the program for the safety and convenience of the travelers.

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