Arenal, Monteverde & the Osa Peninsula

Itinerary in Brief: Combine the Classic Highlights with the Remote Osa Peninsula

  • Flaming Arenal Volcano
  • Lush Monteverde Cloud Forest
  • The wild and remote Osa Peninsula
  • Great wildlife viewing
  • Premier small hotels and lodges
  • All transport and guiding included
  • Can be customized
  • See below for day by day details

Day by Day Itinerary

Day 1       Arrive to San Jose

Fly into San Jose, the capital of Costa Rica. You will be met for transfer to your hotel. (Depending on when you arrive, you might have time for a visit to one of the city’s museums, including the Jade Museum and the Gold Museum.)
Grano de Oro

Day 2        Osa Peninsula

Catch an early morning flight from San Jose down to one of the remotest and wildest areas in the country: the Osa Peninsula. After landing, you will have a short drive to the Sierpe River where you board a riverboat and travel south to the Drake Bay area and transfer to your hotel. Located on the Southwest Pacific Coast of Costa Rica, next to Corcovado National Park, the Osa Peninsula is one of the most biologically diverse places in the world.
La Paloma Lodge (B,L,D)

Day 3 – 4      Osa Peninsula

You’ll have these next two days to participate in a variety of activities available in the area, including hiking, snorkeling, scuba diving, fishing, and kayaking just to name a few.
La Paloma Lodge (B,L,D)

Day 5           Sarchi, Zarcero and the Arenal Volcano

In the morning you will be picked up and transferred back to the airport for your flight to San Jose. Upon arrival to San Jose you will be met at the airport and then depart to the Arenal Volcano region. Along the way, stop to see the handmade crafts of Sarchi and the topiary gardens of Zarcero before arriving to your lodge. This is the same lodge used by the Smithsonian Institute in conducting its observations of the volcano.
Arenal Observatory Lodge (B,L,D)

Day 6      Arenal Volcano

Today you’ll join your guide and a small group of other travelers (max 6 people) from the lodge to take a morning hike around the base of the volcano, where you’ll observe the lava flow and enjoy spectacular views up to the smoldering crater (weather permitting). In the afternoon you will visit the Arenal Vida Campesina organic farm and learn about common Costa Rican crops such as coffee, bananas and plantains. You will enjoy a lunch prepared with freshly harvested vegetables. After lunch you will visit the 200 feet tall La Fortuna Waterfall. After walking down a steep but short path you will have the chance to swim in the cool water of the lagoon fed by the fall. This and the following excursions can also be done with a private guide for an additional cost.
Arenal Observatory Lodge (B,L,D)

Day 7      Monteverde Cloud Forest

Today you will visit the Arenal Hanging Bridges. This is a complex of suspension bridges and trails through the rainforest where you will likely be able to spot local fauna such as toucans and capuchin monkeys. In the afternoon you will travel to the Monteverde Cloud Forest. You’ll be staying in a lovely small hotel with great views of the surrounding area.
Hotel Fonda Vela (B,L,D)

Day 8       Monteverde Cloud Forest

Monteverde is a uniquely beautiful, mountainous cloud forest environment, and if you appreciate nature you can’t help but be captivated by the place. In the morning you’ll start out on the Selvatura’s Canopy zip line, one of the longest zip lines of its kind, taking you through the virgin cloud forest canopy. For those who wish to have a bit more stable footing they can opt for the “skywalk canopy tour,” where you walk along a series of suspended bridges from which you can observe the jungle canopy. In the afternoon you have a guided walk through the forest allowing you to appreciate the dense jungle from below the canopy. This is a small group excursion but can be organized in private if you prefer.
Hotel Fonda Vela (B,L,D)

Day 9      Return to San Jose

After breakfast it is time to say good bye to the Monteverde Rainforest and transfer back to San Jose. You will arrive to San Jose in the late afternoon and be dropped off at your hotel where you can relax and talk about all you have seen in the last 8 days.
Grano de Oro (B)

Day 10       Return Home

Today is your final day in Costa Rica. You will be picked up at your hotel approximately 3 hours prior to your international flight’s departure and transferred to the airport.