10 day itinerary -- Will this be possible?
Replies: 5 - Last Post: Aug 20, 2012 9:55 AM Last Post By: SoloHobo
Aug 19, 2012 6:48 PM
10 day itinerary -- Will this be possible?Hello all,
My girlfriend and I will be flying to Costa Rica in late August and wanted to see if this itinerary was doable. We are very active and would love to see as much of the country as possible but I'm hoping we aren't biting off more than we can chew seeing as though we've never traveled to Central America before. We want our trip to descend in action and adventure but ascend in luxury and comfort as we go. I'm fully aware there's a good chance the Pacific side will be very rainy but we really would like to visit the Nicoya Peninsula. Let me know your thoughts they will be greatly appreciated!
Day 1: Land San Jose, Explore Central Market
Day 2: Morning bus to Puerto Viejo, Bike to Playa Cocles/Manzanillo, Stay in Puerto Viejo
Day 3: Morning rafting trip on the Pacuare River: picked up in Puerto Viejo, provided evening transportation to La Fortuna/Arenal, Hot springs at night
Day 4: Morning transport La Fortuna --> Santa Elena and Monteverde (Jeep-Boat-Jeep) -- Hiking in afternoon
Day 5: Monteverde Coffee Tour, Canopy Tour
Day 6: Morning bus Monteverde --> Puntarenas --> Coonatramar Ferry to Playa Naranjo --> Bus to Montezuma
Day 7: Morning bus to Reserva Natural Absoluta Cabo Blanco, Hiking in afternoon
Day 8: Shuttle pick up Montezuma --> Mal Pais, Beach day
Day 9: Beach day in Mal Pais/Santa Teresa
Day 10: Beach half day, Direct bus from Mal Pais to San Jose via the ferry leaves at 6 a.m. and 2 p.m. Takes 6-7 hours. Stay in San Jose, leave Day 11.
Aug 20, 2012 7:17 AM
1as i was reading your proposed itinerary, i kept shaking my head, "no....no....no....no..." (ending up with "what is WRONG with you?")
you have planned WAY too many places for 10 days. about all you can do is go back home and say "i went here and here and there and the other place" without really getting to know or enjoying any of them. with this itinerary, you will spend most of your time packing and unpacking, checking in and out and riding in a vehicle.
for 10 days, figure 3 locations.
southern nicoya peninsula, arenal, monteverde
southern nicoya peninsula, arenal, tortuguero
arenal, tortuguero, puerto viejo
if you are rafting from san jose, then
puerto viejo, arenal, southern nicoya peninsula --- you get the idea.
costa rica is a small country but it takes time to get around. http://www.yourtravelmap.com for distances and travel times.
the airport is not actually in san jose but the next town over, alajuela. it makes sense to head for san jose for your first night so you can do the rafting trip. but for your last night, plan on staying in alajuela where you can find lodging of all sorts and prices, 15 minutes or less from the airport. plan on being at the airport 2.5-3 hours ahead of your flight. no online check-in is possible -- everyone has to just stand in line at the airline counter to check in.
upon arrival, you can take a public bus or taxi into san jose. bus is about $1.00 (you will pay the driver in colones) and the taxi is about $25, depending on where you are going. if you are going to the central market, be very very careful. it's interesting, but a haven for thieves and pickpockets. don't carry anything with you except for some cash. as i said, it's interesting but you might be a bit disappointed since it's more like a flea market than a cultural phenomenon.
(re your itinerary: i don't know how you are going to spend 1/2 day at the beach on day 10 AND take the direct bus from mal pais to san jose that leaves at 6 am. this seems mutually exclusive.)
scale back your expectations a bit and you will have a relaxing and enjoyable vacation.
Aug 20, 2012 7:50 AM
2Another amazing race plan...no way jose...
With just 10 days, why dont you pick one coast? You hardly have time for two. Also, the whole point of the beach is to relax and wind down, which is best for 3-4 days, not 1 night and move on. Also, put the beach at the end, not the beginning.
Going from the caribe all the way back to to La Fortuna and then Monteverde is insane and not even possible, via public tranpsort the whole time????
You have 10 days, pick 3 places, going in 1 direction...not 5.
Aug 20, 2012 9:24 AM
3Thank you both for your thoughts and ideas. We have definitely taken your thoughts into consideration and dropped the Nicoya Peninsula from our itinerary in order to keep our trip more on the dry coast and have less of an Amazing Race. Here's a modified itinerary that hopefully seems less transportation heavy and more practical: The days 4, 5, 6, and 7 are with a travel company.
Day 1: Fly in, Stay in San Jose
Day 2: Bus to Puerto Viejo, Puerto Viejo activities
Day 3: Puerto Viejo activities
Day 4: Private transport pickup in Puerto Viejo, transport to Torteguero, Torteguero activities
Day 5: Torteguero activities
Day 6: Torteguero activities, afternoon transport to Finca Moulinsart
Day 7: Morning pickup @ Finca Moulinsart. All day rafting trip on Rio Pacuare. Private transport to Arenal. Hot Springs in evening.
Day 8: La Fortuna → Jeep-Boat-Jeep → Monteverde. Monteverde activities.
Day 9: Monteverde activities.
Day 10: Monteverde activities. Bus to Alajuela. Stay Alajuela.
Day 11: Fly out
Aug 20, 2012 9:32 AM
4that makes a lot more sense.
i would question your one day in arenal vs two days in monteverde. they are different and have different things to offer. monteverde will be much wetter and colder - but - it really depends on what you are looking for. just make sure you have made the right choice for what you are interested in.
be sure to check out the shared van shuttles also: http://www.anywherecostarica.com click on transportation or http://www.shuttlebus.co.cr this is hotel-to-hotel service in a 12-passenger, air conditioned van for around $40 per "leg."
i'm sure you will have a great visit!
Aug 20, 2012 9:55 AM
5I gather they are only putting La Fortuna on the plan in order to align with the afternoon Shuttle/Boat/Shuttle to Monteverde. But I agree in August, they may find more fun activities and better weather and conditions to use La Fortuna as a base and then make way to back to SJO area...
I would flip this around and Arenal 3 nights, Tortuguero 2 nights, Caribe beaches 4 nights, raft back to SJ on Rio Pacuare...
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