Home » Sample Itineraries »  Classic Costa Rica

Classic Costa Rica - 10 nights

1 nt San Jose, 3 nts Arenal, 2 nts Monteverde, 4 nts Manuel Antonio

This holiday includes the opportunity of enjoying the spectacular volcanic and mountainous scenery of the Northern Region and the jungle clad beaches of the Central Pacific coast.

Experience the incredible biodiversity of the rainforest and cloud forest where wildlife abounds and you may see Howler monkeys, Capuchin monkeys, Squirrel monkeys, Two Toed and Three Toed sloths. The birdlife is plentiful and colourful and you may see toucans, tanagers, motmots and oropendulas.

During your stay in Arenal there are opportunities for guided hiking, active adventure such as zip lining, white water rafting or kayaking on the Arenal Lake.

The latter part of the holiday provides the opportunity to relax on the beach, take a catamaran sail along the coastline and explore the Manuel Antonio National Park with its abundance of wildlife and stunning rainforest backed beaches.

Price guide

10 nights from £2,395 per person based on double occupancy

These prices are based on an average flight price of £650 per person and High Season room rates. Flight routes vary, there are direct flight options with British Airways from London Gatwick but also many alternative routes via the US. Please contact us for accurate flight pricing for your timings and place of departure.


  • International flights from UK to San Jose, Costa Rica
  • 1 night in San Jose
  • 3 nights at Lost Iguana Resort, Arenal
  • 2 nights at Monteverde Lodge and Gardens, Monteverde
  • 4 nights at Parador Hotel, Manuel Antonio
  • Hanging Bridges Tour in Arenal Park
  • Guided walk in Arenal National Park to base of volcano
  • Choice of guided hike through Monteverde or Santa Elena National Parks
  • Guided tour of Manuel Antonio National Park
  • Daily breakfast
  • Two dinners

Day to Day

Below is an example day to day itinerary.

Day 1

Fly from UK to San Jose, Costa Rica. Met on arrival and transferred to hotel to overnight in San Jose.

Day 2

Transferred by private air-conditioned vehicle through the province of Alajela to Arenal (*option to visit Poas Volcano for additional cost). Overnight at Lost Iguana Resort near Arenal National Park which has stunning views of the volcano (B).

Day 3

Visit the Mistico Hanging Bridges with a naturalist guide (approx. 2.5 hours). Explore the 3km of trails and hanging bridges which allow close observation of birds, flowers and the vegetation of the primary rainforest. The walk is a fun and education option to learn more about the forest and local environment. Suitable for all ages and fitness levels. (B).

Day 4

Day at leisure. Optional excursions could include a guided hike in Arenal National Park to the base of the volcano, kayaking on Lake Arenal, a wildlife safari float on the river, or ziplining through the rainforest canopy (B).

Day 5

Transfer by private air-conditioned vehicle to the lake, and then take a boat across Lake Arenal to Rio Chiquito which takes approx. 40 minutes. From here you will be transferred by private air-conditioned vehicle to Monteverde Lodge and Gardens hotel which takes approx. 1.5 hours and is along a picturesque winding road. Monteverde Lodge and Gardens has an excellent location close to all three cloud forest in the region (BD).

Day 6

Monteverde is at a high altitude being 1,440m above sea level and sits on the continental divide reciding a steady supply of clouds with life giving moisture. The forest appearance changes from the rainforest of Arenal as trees are covered with moss, bromeliads and epiphytes and the habitat is home to over 100 species of mammals, 400 species of birds of which the hummingbird varieties are a great attraction and there is a chance to see the elusive Resplendant Quetzal, tens of thousands of insect species, and over 2,500 varieties of plants including 420 species of orchids. Included today is a guided hike to your choice of either Santa Elena or Monteverde Cloud Forest (BD).

Day 7

Transfer by air-conditioned vehicle to the southern Pacific Coast and stay at the Parador Hotel near the Manuel Antonio National Park (journey time approx. 3.5 hours). Relax in the pools or take a short stroll to the beach which is safe for swimming (B).

Day 8

Today you will take a guided tour of Manuel Antonio National Park, this park is one of the most popular National Parks in the country due to the beautiful beaches and wildlife spotting opportunities. The park is home to three monkey species, two and three toed sloths, coatis, racoons, boa constrictor snakes, iguana and numerous birds, butterflies and insects. The trails is approx. 2 miles long and is flat terrain. Half way through the walk a stop will be made at a stunning beach for a rest or a quick swim. The tour takes approx. 2 to 3 hours (B).

Day 9 to 10

Two further nights at Parador Hotel to relax on the beach, hire a kayak, paddle board or have a surfing lesson. There are catamaran boat trips along the coast where you may be able to see dolphins or even Humpback Whales if in their migrating season (B).

Day 11

Transfer by private air-conditioned vehicle back to Juan Santamaria International Airport in San Jose for your return flight back to UK. Journey time takes approx. 3 hours (B).

Day 12

Arrive in UK

Gardens of Lost Iguana Resort Hanging Bridges walk at Arenal Passerinis Tanager Manuel Antonio Beach Monteverde Cloud Forest Hummingbird at Monteverde Capuchin or White Faced Monkey at Manuel Antonio Park Parador Hotel View of Monteverde