This privately guided 9 day tour is ideal for first time visitors. Explore the Central Valley of Costa Rica with its extraordinary cloud forest, active volcanoes, waterfalls and rainforest landscapes. Discover the country’s diverse flora and fauna and visit a coffee plantation. We can also offer this as a self drive tour.
Including return international flights with British Airways, private transfers and the services of English-speaking representatives and guides, all accommodation on bed and breakfast basis.
Hiking through the unique and truly magical Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve, trying to spot white-headed capuchin and howler monkeys, the racoon-like coati and numerous beautiful birds such as the three-wattled bellbird and the dazzling resplendent quetzal amongst others.
Depart from the UK on a morning flight to Costa Rica arriving in the afternoon. Be met by our English-speaking representative and transfer to your hotel in San José with the evening at leisure. Stay at Grano de Oro for 2 nights.
Leave your hotel early morning for a day’s private guided tour of some of the Central Valley’s highlights. Stop at the family-owned Doka coffee plantation for breakfast and a chance to learn about the coffee process; from the picking to milling, grinding and roasting of the beans. From here you will continue to the Poas Volcano National Park passing a colourful landscape of coffee plantations and fern, flower and strawberry farms along the way. The Poas Volcano with its sulfuric rainwater fed lake at the bottom is one of Costa Rica’s most spectacular. The vast crater is shrouded in smoke and rising steam for much of the day, and visits are limited to around 20 minutes at this highly active volcano. From here the tour continues to La Paz Waterfall Gardens, a private natural park with walking trails leading to the beautiful White Magic Waterfall. The park also has a bird watching area, a wildlife rescue reserve and a hummingbird garden, as well as a butterfly observatory, frog exhibit and a serpentarium. You will stop for a typical Costa Rican lunch before returning to your hotel.
Leave San José after breakfast for the three hour drive to La Fortuna in the Arenal region. The region is a beautiful landscape of forests, lakes, hot springs, fields of crops and one of the country’s most iconic volcanoes. Spend the rest of the day at leisure, settling into your hotel and taking in your rainforest surroundings, or visit the hotel’s Titoku hot springs, or the charming town of La Fortuna, a ten minute taxi ride away. La Fortuna is the gateway to the famous Arenal Volcano National Park area and a popular town with a number of restaurants for dining. Stay at Arenal Kioro Suites & Spa for 3 nights.
Today’s expedition to the striking Arenal Volcano will involve covering around 2.5km on foot, starting with a walk along a trail of volcanic rock to reach the El Silencio Private Reserve observation point where you can enjoy the incredible views of the volcano and Arenal Lake. Hike through the forest at the base of the volcano to discover a variety of flora and fauna and you may encounter wild turkeys, toucans, orioles, wild boars, snakes and monkeys along the way. At the end of the trail enjoy some refreshing tropical fruit before returning to your hotel.
After breakfast drive to the wildlife sanctuary Hanging Bridges where a knowledgeable naturalist guide will lead you on a natural history walk through the rainforest, Make your way along the 3km of paths and bridges built in harmony with nature allowing for total immersion in the diverse flora and fauna, with colourful birds a major presence. Return to your hotel and enjoy the afternoon at leisure.
Leave your hotel for the approximately 2.5 hour scenic journey to Monteverde by land and water. Drive to Arenal Lake, Costa Rica’s largest lake built to provide hydroelectric power, and board a boat for the 30-40 minute journey across the dam. From here journey on to the rural community of Monteverde, famed for its unique cloud forest. Stay at Monteverde Lodge & Gardens for 3 nights.
Set in a rural area in the mountains, Monteverde offers visitors a chance to connect with the local culture and people, and experience the biodiverse landscape of this cloud forest area. After breakfast at your hotel, you will join an expert naturalist guide for a half day tour of the atmospheric Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve. Costa Rica is one of the most biodiverse countries in the world and a visit to a cloud forest is a truly magical experience. Its low-hanging clouds hover around the tree canopy and its varied flora include the world’s largest variety of orchids, and also waiting to be discovered are numerous birds including the majestic quetzal, mammals, reptiles and amphibians. There are several trails to follow including one to La Ventana, a panoramic viewpoint with spectacular vistas.
Enjoy your last day at leisure, making the most of the hotel facilities and its surroundings; explore the gardens and try to spot some of the birds, coatis and monkeys that have made it their home.
After breakfast transfer to the airport for your overnight return flight to the UK arriving the following day.
Please note all schedules are subject to change.
Prices on request for optional services.
Take an amazing helicopter transfer to Arenal, overflying the Barva and Paos volcanoes, many lagoons and waterfalls, the Children’s Eternal Forest, and Arenal Volcano. Prices for this experience of a lifetime are available on request.