• Arenal, Monteverde & Manuel Antonio

Experience Costa Rica’s diverse landscapes, from Arenal and Monteverde to the beaches of Manuel Antonio

Days: 9 | From: $5,250/per person

  • Includes accommodations at first class boutique hotels that reflect the best of local culture
  • Includes excursions and tours with superb private guides

Starting in the capital of San Jose, take a night to explore Costa Rica's gateway city. From there, travel to the Arenal volcano region, spend time exploring the lush Monteverde cloud forest, and finish with a visit to a beautiful village overlooking the Central Pacific Coast.

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We tailor itineraries to your dates and interests, adjusting hotels, excursions and length as desired.

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At a glance

  • San Jose
    1 night: discover the capital city of San Jose
  • Arenal
    2 nights: explore the Arenal volcano region and visit the famous La Fortuna waterfall
  • Monteverde
    2 nights: enjoy this beautiful, mountainous cloud forest environment
  • Manuel Antonio
    3 nights: visit a beautiful village overlooking the Central Pacific Coast

  • All itineraries are fully customizable. We will send you a personalized variation that reflects your interests and travel dates at no extra cost. Call to discuss your travel plans with one of our Specialists who know this region firsthand.

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Sample itinerary

Day 1:

Welcome to San Jose

Costa Rica - San Jose

Fly into San Jose, the capital of Costa Rica. Your private guide will meet you at the airport and transfer you to your hotel. If you arrive early in the day, enjoy some time to explore the city or visit the Jade Museum or the Gold Museum.

Accommodations: Grano de Oro

Located on a shady street near Paseo Colon, San Jose’s main thoroughfare, Hotel Grano de Oro provides an elegant oasis in the city center. Converted from a Victorian mansion, this 40-room hotel blends the hospitality of a private home with the amenities of a boutique hotel. Period photographs line the corridors, samples of local art meander throughout the building, and tropical floral arrangements appear at every turn. The hotel boasts an ideal location for exploring San Jose and its museums and day trips to the local rainforest and volcanoes.

Day 2:

Sarchi, Zarcero and the Arenal Volcano

Costa Rica - Arenal Volcano

Set out for the Arenal Volcano region, an area known for its lush scenery and enchanting waterfalls. Along the way, stop to see the handmade crafts of Sarchi and the topiary gardens of Zarcero.

Accommodations: Amor Arenal, 2 nights

The boutique hotel Amor Arenal is set at the foothills of the Arenal Volcano, by the edge of a virgin forest canyon. From your room, walk right onto the jungle trails or soak in one of the spring fed pools. Enjoy beautiful views of the volcano and the San Carlos Valley as you enjoy organic meals made with local produce.

*Includes: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Alternative lodging options: Arenal Observatory Lodge
Day 3:

Arenal Volcano & La Fortuna Waterfall

Costa Rica - La Fortuna Waterfall

Enjoy a morning hike around the base of the volcano, where you can see solidified lava flow and enjoy spectacular views up to the smoldering crater. In the afternoon, visit the Arenal Vida Campesina organic farm to learn about Costa Rica’s primary crops like coffee, bananas, and plantains. Enjoy a lunch prepared with freshly harvested vegetables, then set out to visit the 200 foot tall La Fortuna Waterfall. Descend the short, steep path to the base, and reward your efforts with a swim in the cool, waterfall-fed lagoon.

Accommodations: Amor Arenal, 2 nights

*Includes: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 4:

Monteverde Cloud Forest

Costa Rica - Monteverde Hanging Bridges

Explore the remarkable Arenal Hanging Bridges, a complex of suspension bridges and trails through the forest canopy. This area is home to a variety of birdlife and other fauna, including toucans, sloths, coatis, and capuchin monkeys. In the afternoon, set out for the Monteverde Cloud Forest, where you’ll be staying in a lovely small hotel with great views of the lush surrounding area.

Accommodations: Senda Monteverde, 2 nights

The Senda Monteverde Hotel is a proud member of The Cayuga Collection of Sustainable Luxury Hotels, and boasts a stylish, welcoming indoor setting that connects seamlessly with the surrounding forest. It is a great base for cloud forest adventures, completely surrounded by nature and with easy access to all the cloud forest has to offer. Visitors have access to the onsite nature trails and can enjoy complimentary access to the nearby Aguti Wildlife Reserve.

*Includes: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Alternative lodging options: Fondavela Monteverde
Day 5:

Monteverde Cloud Forest

Costa Rica - Hummingbird

Sink into nature as you explore Monteverde, a uniquely beautiful, mountainous cloud forest environment. Start your morning on the Selvatura’s Canopy zipline, one of the longest ziplines of its kind, which whisks you through the virgin cloud forest canopy. For those who prefer to move at their own pace, opt instead for the Skywalk Canopy Tour, exploring a series of suspended bridges that cross through the cloud forest canopy. In the afternoon, enjoy a guided walk through the forest to get a different perspective on life below the canopy.

Accommodations: Senda Monteverde, 2 nights

*Includes: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 6:

The Sparkling Beaches of Manuel Antonio

Manuel Antonio, National Park in Costa Rica - beautiful tropical beach at pacific coast

Set out for glittering Manuel Antonio, a beautiful small town overlooking the Central Pacific Coast. This area is home to a variety of birds and wildlife, and offers sweeping ocean views and lush greenery.

Accommodations: Arenas del Mar Beachfront & Rainforest Resort, 3 nights

Located on Costa Rica’s Central Pacific Coast, Arenas Del Mar sits on a cliff overlooking two beaches and the spectacular Manuel Antonio National Park. The hotel is composed of 38 rooms and suites, the majority of which have private decks with views. The hotel’s scenic 11-acre property offers two pools, a spa, restaurant, bar, pool bar, and easy access to the beach.

*Includes: Breakfast

Day 7:

Manuel Antonio National Park

Costa Rica - Manuel Antonio Wildlife

Discover natural beauty at Manuel Antonio National Park, located just south of your hotel. This lovely forest is spread along the Pacific coast and home to a variety of birds, monkeys, and other wildlife, which you will be able to spot as you explore the trails. In the afternoon, relax on one of the beautiful beaches, or set out to stroll along one of the many trails in the area.

Accommodations: Arenas del Mar Beachfront & Rainforest Resort, 3 nights

*Includes: Breakfast

Day 8:

Manuel Antonio

Costa Rica - Manuel Antonio Horse on Beach

Enjoy a relaxing leisure day or try one of the many activities offered in this area, including rafting, snorkeling, sportfishing, hiking, and boat trips, such as out to Damas Island.

Accommodations: Arenas del Mar Beachfront & Rainforest Resort, 3 nights

Located on Costa Rica’s Central Pacific Coast, Arenas Del Mar sits on a cliff overlooking two beaches and the spectacular Manuel Antonio National Park. The hotel is composed of 38 rooms and suites, the majority of which have private decks with views. The hotel’s scenic 11-acre property offers two pools, a spa, restaurant, bar, pool bar, and easy access to the beach.

*Includes: Breakfast

Day 9:

Return to San Jose

Take a quick flight back to San Jose, where you will be transferred to the international airport for your flight home.

*Includes: Breakfast

More Photos From This Trip

Popular Ways to Customize This Itinerary

  • Add 3 nights at one of the remotest and wildest areas in the country: the Osa Peninsula. 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. Activities available in the area include hiking, snorkeling, scuba diving, fishing, and kayaking just to name a few.

  • Add 3 nights on the Caribbean coast by visiting Tortuguero National Park. Tortuguero is famous for its wildlife, particularly the giant sea turtles that nest on the nearby beaches. The area teems with a wide variety of monkeys, tropical birds, and many other creatures, including the rare and elusive jaguar.

  • Include some downtime for rest and relaxation! Some free time to unwind or have a massage will allow you to feel refreshed and ready for the remainder of your trip. Many of our properties include excellent spas or wellness centers. We can help arrange these services or include properties that offer health & wellness amenities.

  • Contact us to learn about more options for designing and customizing your trip.

Reviews From This Trip

5 stars

  • Overall trip was amazing. We absolutely loved Costa Rica.
    Doug Saulsbury
  • We had an excellent trip to Costa Rica. All of the arrangements went like clockwork.
    Jim & Laura Gregory
  • All guides and drivers were amazingly friendly.
    Susan Burger

Call us to start planning your journey today:

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Why Travel with Vaya?

We're TRUE specialists

We’ve not only traveled there, we’ve lived there. Our smart and engaging specialists are all current or former expatriates with years of experience in the region.

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From the first phone call to after you get back, we're here for you every step of the way. We listen, create, customize and advocate for you, and design experiences that go beyond the expected.

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Our discerning sensibility and good taste go beyond just choices in hotels and top guides; we have a walk the walk commitment to the environment and are genuine leaders in conservation efforts.