Costa Rica Vacation Itineraries

Classic Nature Lover’s Green Getaway

Nine days and eight nights in Costa Rica’s natural splendor

You travel to Costa Rica for its tropical nature. Sun, sandy beaches, swaying palm trees, and sweaty fruit drinks all come to mind. Costa Rica’s nature, however, is much more than the beach lifestyle. It’s an incredibly diverse collection of forests, flowers, fauna, and fantastic landscapes. It’s a nature lover’s paradise.

Tamarindo Costa Rica
Tamarindo, northern Pacific of Costa Rica. Photo: Andrés Madrigal

If you’re looking for a nature-based vacation, this is the itinerary for you. You’ll stay in a gorgeous, rustic lodge surrounded by lush rainforest, a contemporary-style hotel on Costa Rica’s Gold Coast, and luxury digs with their own thermal hot springs on site. In between hotel hopping, you’ll explore some of the country’s most exotic locales, visit incredible national parks, stroll along uninhabited beaches, and see the countryside from the Tempisque River.

Here’s how it breaks down:

Day 1: Welcome to Costa Rica! Now go visit an active volcano!

Arrive in Liberia, where you’ll take a private transfer. The next stop is Rincón de la Vieja National Park, where you’ll stay at Borinquen Mountain Resort. This is the perfect introduction to Costa Rica’s untamed countryside.

Borinquen Resort at the base of Rincón de la Vieja Volcano. Photos courtesy of Borinquen Resort.

Day 2: You’re on vacation. Enjoy the resort!

Nestled in the picturesque mountains near Rincón de la Vieja Volcano, Hotel Borinquen Mountain Resort is perfect for rest and relaxation or simply to let go with a wide array of outdoor activities. The hotel offers an impressive wellness and activity center that includes thermal pools, an all-natural spa, steam rooms, canopy tours, horseback riding, and more.

Hot springs, mud baths, and horseback riding are just a few of the activities you can enjoy at Borinquen Mountain Resort. Photos by Andrés Madrigal.

Day 3: From one volcano to another: Borinquen to Arenal.

A private transfer will take you to the Arenal Volcano area, where you will stay at Arenal Springs Resort. Take a dip in the pool or on-site thermal hot springs, marvel at Arenal Volcano’s conical shape, or explore the lush gardens.

Day 4: Birdwatching tour.

Go on a birdwatching tour! Visit the vicinity of Lake Arenal or El Silencio Reserve as an expert guide points out some of the hundreds of bird species that call Costa Rica home.

Day 5: Enjoy your stay at Arenal Springs Resort and La Fortuna.

We don’t believe in scheduling every day to the max. Take this day to relax at the resort, explore the boutiques in town, or find a tour of your own. Whatever you want to do, we’ll help you do it.

arenal springs resort room pool
Photos courtesy of Arenal Springs Resort.

Day 6: Arenal to Tamarindo: To the beach!

A private transfer will take you to Tamarindo where you will stay at Cala Luna Hotel. Tamarindo is a fun beach town with a full range of services, great beaches for swimming and surfing, and a thriving culinary scene.

Tamarindo Beach is the perfect beach for beginner and intermediate surfers. Northern Pacific, Costa Rica. Photo: Andrés Madrigal

Day 7: Visit a national park, see some exotic flora and fauna.

Today you’ll visit Palo Verde National Park, which is a treasure trove of plant and animal life. Palo Verde houses twelve different ecosystems. In order to get a better vantage point for this region’s rich biodiversity, you’ll sail down the Tempisque River on a soothing boat tour that will bring the jungle alive before your eyes.

Day 8: Enjoy your stay at Cala Luna and Tamarindo.

The hotel’s restaurant serves healthy meals with an Asian twist, and the poolside bar serves refreshing cocktails. The beach is just a few minutes away from the hotel. Get out and soak in the tropics.

Cala Luna Boutique Hotel. Photos courtesy of Cala Luna Hotel.

Day 9: All good things must come to an end: Time to head home.

A private transfer will take you to Liberia International Airport where you will catch your flight back home.

Package Includes:

  • Exclusive Airport “Meet and Greet” service—we’re there as you get off the plane so you have a stress-free arrival
  • Private transfer to Borinquen Mountain Resort with an English-speaking driver
  • Two nights lodging at Borinquen Mountain Resort—including breakfast during your stay
  • Private transfer to Arenal with an English-speaking driver
  • Three nights lodging at Arenal Springs Resort—including buffet breakfast daily
  • Birdwatching tour
  • Private transfer to Cala Luna hotel with an English-speaking driver
  • Three nights lodging at Cala Luna—including breakfast during your stay
  • Palo Verde National Park & Tempisque River Tour
  • Private transfer back to the airport

A private transfer will take you to Liberia International Airport where you will catch your flight back home.

Notes: Of course, you can change out any activity of lodging option; these are just our suggestions. Let us know what you want and we’ll make it happen.

Costa Rica Traveler does not receive a commission if you book one of these tours. Due to popular demand, our writers are putting together a series of itineraries for all kinds of travelers. We have selected Costa Rica Vacations as our partner travel agency because we know their business and love their service and tours.

Rate per person from: $1,752

Number of nights: 8

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