Itinerary Highlights
    • Search for white-nosed coatis, capuchin monkeys and over 200 bird species in Manuel Antonio National Park
    • Visit chic beach towns and take to the water for a surf lesson with a local instructor in Tamarindo
    • Zip line through the canopy with Arenal Volcano as your backdrop

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Topping the Happy Planet Index (yes that's a thing), Costa Rica knows a thing or two about a peaceful lifestyle. This two-week self-drive itinerary takes you to the verdant Central Valley before heading straight to the Pacific Coast for a dose of chic beach living, where you can enjoy sun-drenched beaches, jungle-clad mountains and mind-blowing surf.

Starting in the lush Central Valley, explore the scenic forestland and head for Manuel Antonio National Park, one of the best places to see Costa Rica’s wildlife. Head for Tamarindo, a corner of unspoilt wilderness where your itinerary can consist of nothing more than hammock dozing and seaside lounging. For a splash more adrenaline, enjoy its perfect surfing conditions and seasonal sea turtle watching.
Other activities include boat trips, zip lining, birding trips and cocktail tastings. Round off the trip with zip lining through lush rainforest canopies in Arenal with the towering volcano looming in the background.


Everything is 100% tailored to you


This morning, board your flight from London to the Costa Rican capital, San Jose. This flight takes approximately 11 hours (maybe more if you don’t fly direct), so make sure you have plenty of reading material to hand. On arrival into San Jose in the early afternoon, pick up your hire car and drive 45 minutes to the sugar and coffee capital of Costa Rica – Alajuela. Surrounded by waterfalls and walking trails right on your doorstep, it’s a picture-perfect pit-stop after an international flight. Tuck into your first Costa Rican dinner before hitting the hay after a long travel day.



After a leisurely breakfast, you’ll have time for a morning ramble in the scenic forestland inhabited by goldfinches and various hummingbirds. Stretch your legs for an hour or so before setting off for the Pacific Coast, which will take around two-and-a-half hours. We will provide you with detailed directions and plenty of possible detours along the way. Arrive on the fringes of Manuel Antonio National Park, framed by lush cliffs and idyllic beaches, where you’ll find your abode for the next two nights.



Today you can ignite your jungle dreams on a guided tour of Manuel Antonio National Park, the smallest of Costa Rica’s 28 protected parks. One of the best ways of immersing yourself into the area's Instagrammable scenery is by way of a gentle wander through the verdant landscapes with an expert local guide. En route you'll stop at thundering waterfalls, the perfect place for a dip (just don't forget the GoPro), beautiful beaches and otherworldly mangroves. If you're a nature lover, it's worth requesting a dedicated guide who can point out exotic flora, fauna and medicinal herbs along the way. After time exploring, why not recuperate on a jungle-fringed beach; relax here, cocktail in hand until the evening when you enjoy (hopefully) one of the most intense amber sunsets you may ever see.



Today you will leave this pretty little national park behind and kick off the four-hour journey to one of Costa Rica’s stunning cloud forest reserves: Monteverde. This high elevation forest is home to a whole array of blossoming flora and fauna, including jaguars and ocelots, as well as beautiful orchids and ferns. When you’ve settled into your hotel, don your boots and head out for an exploratory hike in the surrounding forest, keeping your eyes peeled for all kinds of colourful birdlife and pretty plants.

DAYS 5 & 6


The Monteverde Cloud Forest Biological Reserve is among the most famous reserves in the world, known for its biodiversity, conservation, contributions and scientific research, so where better to head out on a guided tour. You will hike through the well-marked-trails, waterfalls, rivers and the observation area of the park, with an expert guide. If you’re lucky you might spot a ‘quetzal’, one of the most beautiful birds in the world. Fill the rest of your time on the reserve chasing waterfalls (despite what TLC say) and looking for beautiful birdlife and tapirs in Tapir Valley Nature Reserve.

DAYS 7 to 9


It’s a four-hour drive to Tamarindo, leaving the lush forest behind you and heading for the palm-fringed Pacific Coast. This pretty patch of coast is a firm favourite for beach lovers and surfers alike and has a whole range of water sports on offer. Spend the next few days sailing, kayaking and diving, or head to dry land to explore the area’s stunning natural surroundings, whether on an ATV tour of the coast, getting a bird’s eye view on a canopy tour or exploring caves in nearby Barra Honda National Park. Be sure to pack your comfiest walking boots as the nearby Rincon de la Vieja National Park is brimming with grand landscapes and winding hiking trails.

For an extra special excursion, hop on a boat and set sail for Isla Rosanda, or Pink Island. This tiny island is famed for its stunning pink sand, as well as being surrounded by stunning coral reefs and crystal-clear waters.

DAYS 10 to 12


Today brings another four-hour car ride, this time to La Fortuna in Arenal, leaving Tamarindo in the distance. This holiday hotspot is undoubtedly one of Costa Rica’s most talked about destinations, and you will soon find out why. Think verdant jungle, thundering waterfalls and bright tropical flowers, all in the sultry shadow of Arenal Volcano.

The next few days are brimming with bucket-list topping activities. Hop aboard the Sky Tram which will take you soaring to the top of a mountain near Arenal Volcano, before harnessing up and zip lining through the lush canopy at full speed ahead. Be sure to stop at the top for a snap of the view below – Arenal Volcano is hard to miss. The slow-paced activity lovers will enjoy a visit to the Proyecto Asis, a wildlife protection centre where you can help prepare animal feed and learn all about the conservation of the local fauna. To top off an animal-filled day, head to the warm waters of Exotermales, which bubble up directly from Arenal Volcano. The thermal pools are slap bang in the middle of the tropical jungle and make for the ultimate spot to relax to the rhythm of the jungle.

DAY 13


Sadly, your Costa Rican road trip is coming to an end. Hop into the car for your final long journey (three-and-a-half-hours) and watch as Arenal Volcano shrinks into the distance behind you. Venture along winding roads through mountainous landscapes and dense forests until you reach the country’s capital. Hand your hire car back and enjoy a little bit of time meandering around some of the city’s top sites, before heading to the airport for your flight home.

DAY 14


The holiday has well and truly come to an end. Today you will touchdown into London.

A Rough Idea of Price

Dependent on season, accommodation and activities
The cost for this trip starts from £3,310 per person. The final cost of the trip depends on the way we tailor it especially for you. The final cost varies according to several factors, which include the level of service, length of trip and advance booking time. The exact price will be provided on your personalised quote. The average starting price for this trip is £4,225 per person.
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