Explore Costa Rica
Slutdestination: San Jose
Costa Rica may be small but it's loaded with opportunity for adventure. This two-week itinerary is ideal for anyone looking to get off the beaten path and discover a different kind of travel experience. Drop by a National Geographic-supported reforestation project, visit a sea turtle conservancy program, opt to zipline above the lush canopy, and soak in volcanic hot springs. Getting your hands dirty (and clean again) never felt so good.
Hear a lecture from a researcher at the Monteverde Institute, learn how to make tortillas during a visit to a local family home, spot wildlife while cruising the canals of Tortuguero, enjoy spectacular volcano views while soaking in hot springs, learn all about sea turtles with an expert from the Sea Turtle Conservancy
Private vehicle, shuttle van, boat, walking.
Hotels (11 nts), rustic jungle lodge (2 nts).
National Geographic Journeys Exclusives: Visit the Sea Turtle Conservancy, Tortuguero National Geographic Journeys Exclusives: Tortilla Making and Home Dinner, La Fortuna National Geographic Journeys Exclusives: Monteverde Institute Lecture & Reforestation Project, Monteverde G Adventures for Good: Mi Cafecito Coffee Cooperative Tour, Sarapiqua. Arrival transfer. Boat tour and wildlife viewing in Tortuguero National Park. Guided nature walk in the Santa Elena Cloud Forest Reserve. Guided excursion to Manuel Antonio National Park. All transport between destinations and to/from included activities.
Day 1 San Jose
Arrive at any time. Arrival transfer included.
Day 2 San Jose/Tortuguero (1B, 1L, 1D)
Travel to Tortuguero National Park and enjoy guided boat trips and wildlife viewing through the canals and coastal jungle. In leisure time, relax at the secluded lodge or (on this evening) take an optional night boat excursion.
Day 3 Tortuguero (1B, 1L, 1D)
Enjoy a guided boat trip and jungle walk. Search for caiman, monkeys (spider, howler, and white-faced capuchin), sloths, and basilisk lizards. Also visit the Sea Turtle Conservancy, a non-profit organization co-founded by Archie Carr, a National Geographic grantee. Learn about the research and conservation initiatives that have been instrumental in saving the Caribbean green turtle from extinction.
Day 4 Tortuguero/La Fortuna (1B, 1L)
Depart early and visit a G Adventures-supported coffee cooperative. Take a tour of the co-op and dig into a local lunch. Arrive in La Fortuna in the evening and relax at the pool as you take in jungle and volcano views.
Day 5 La Fortuna (1B, 1D)
Explore Fortuna with numerous optional activities. In the evening, visit a local home and learn the art of tortilla making. Once the tortillas are ready, dig into a tasty casado a typical Costa Rican dish that's made with black beans, plantains, and your very own tortillas.
Day 6 La Fortuna (1B)
Free day in La Fortuna. Options include rafting, waterfall rappelling, soaking in local hot springs, or taking a boat tour of the Caa±o Negro Wildlife Refuge.
Day 7 La Fortuna/Monteverde (1B)
From La Fortuna, we make our way by road and boat up to the misty mountain air of the Monteverde cloud forest region. Spend two days exploring the town and nearby Forest Reserve, truly a bird lover's paradise.
Day 8 Monteverde (1B)
Enjoy a nature hike in the Santa Elena Cloud Forest Reserve. You'll also have some free time after to zip line, walk the hanging bridges, or explore the town.
Day 9 Monteverde (1B)
Visit the Monteverde Institute, which has served as the base for numerous National Geographic funded explorers and researchers studying the famed canopy of the Monteverde Cloud Forest. Enjoy a lecture by one of the researchers before playing an active role in this project, visiting the National Geographic sponsored research plot and planting trees, assisting in the nurseries, or collecting data.
Day 10 Monteverde/Manuel Antonio (1B)
Drive to Manuel Antonio. Enjoy the laid-back atmosphere of the Pacific coast with options to surf, go horseback riding, or visit nearby picturesque beaches.
Day 11 Manuel Antonio (1B)
Take an included day trip to Manuel Antonio National Park. After enjoy free time at the beach.
Day 12 Manuel Antonio (1B)
Free time to explore Manuel Antonio and the National Park with option to surf, go horseback riding, or visit nearby picturesque beaches.
Day 13 Manuel Antonio/San Jose (1B)
Return to San Jose for an optional farewell dinner with the group.
Day 14 San Jose (1B)
Depart at any time.