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Costa Rica and Nicaragua

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Costa Rica and Nicaragua

Day 1: UK/San José
Today you’ll depart on your scheduled flight to San José, via Madrid, for a two-night stay.

Day 2: San José
This morning you’ll get to know San José, the capital of Costa Rica, with our included tour of the key sights, including the National Theatre and the Gold Museum. Set in the centre of a ring of mountain peaks, San José is a vibrant city, where the bustle of everyday life never obscures its wealth of culture. The rest of the day is free for you to explore at your own pace.

Day 3: Tortuguero National Park
You’ll leave San José for the drive to the Tortuguero National Park, one of the country’s most important ecological sites. You’ll see the likes of monkeys and sloths, insects and birds, plus a huge range of reptiles – including crocodiles and caymans. Today’s drive will also take you through the Braulio Carrillo National Park, crossing the Continental Divide, from where you will experience breathtaking views of primary forests. Transfer to your lodge, by boat, for a two-night stay. This afternoon we include a visit to Tortuguero Village and the Caribbean Conservation Museum to learn about sea turtles.

Day 4: Tortuguero National Park
Your day of included activities features two boat trips (subject to local conditions) through jungle-sheltered canals of the Tortuguero National Park, one of Costa Rica’s most biologically diverse wilderness areas.

Day 5: La Fortuna
Today you’ll travel out of the Tortuguero National Park by boat and continue by road to Muelle de San Carlos, in the area of the Arenal Volcano, for a three-night stay. This magnificent volcano has been active since 1968. It is best viewed on a clear night, when its red and orange hues contrast sharply against the dark sky.

Day 6: La Fortuna
Today you may like to take our optional excursion to the Hanging Bridges of Arenal followed by a visit to La Fortuna. In the late afternoon, you can enjoy an optional visit to the hot springs of Tabacon for views of the Arenal Volcano, with dinner included.

Day 7: La Fortuna
Today is free to enjoy the hotel’s natural setting. Alternatively join our pre-bookable optional boat trip this morning along the Peñas Blancas River, through stunning scenery. This afternoon enjoy an included guided walk through the rainforest.

Day 8: Monteverde
Today you’ll travel to Monteverde for a two-night stay, along scenic – if a little bumpy – roads. The Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve was set up in the 1950s by American Quakers searching for peace, and today is home to more than 400 species of birds and 100 species of mammal, including the very vocal howler monkey and the resplendent quetzal, an aptly named bird considered by many to be the most beautiful in the world. You’ll take a panoramic tour of Monteverde village before transferring to the hotel. Lunch is included at a coffee farm en route to Monteverde, where you’ll learn all about the process of making coffee, an important part of Costa Rican culture, and in the afternoon you’ll hear an included talk given by a descendent of the original Quaker settlers. You may like to take an optional guided forest walk this evening.

Day 9: Monteverde
This morning we have included a visit to a nature reserve, where you’ll learn all about the cloud forest. During the afternoon, there are many optional activities to choose from, including a canopy tour and a visit to the frog pond and butterfly gardens.

Day 10: Nicaragua
Today your journey continues as you take the Pan-American Highway to cross the border into Nicaragua, the largest country in Central America. It has a dramatic recent history, but is slowly opening up to tourism, and you’ll be introduced to an extraordinary natural landscape of volcanoes, lakes, mountains and colonial towns. In the late afternoon, you’ll explore the traditional white villages of San Juan de Oriente and Catarina, famed for their pottery and overlooking the beautiful volcanic Apoyo Lagoon, before heading to Granada and your hotel, where you will stay for the next three nights.

Day 11: Granada
Like the rest of Nicaragua, the historic city of Granada is not on most tourist trails, which makes it a delight to explore. Founded in 1524, it boasts a location that’s second to none, on the shores of Lake Nicaragua, one of the largest and most beautiful lakes in the world. As you enjoy our included walking tour around the city, you’ll discover superb colonial architecture, much of it exactly as it was when the Conquistadors were here. After soaking up the laid-back atmosphere and visiting the Convento San Francisco Museum, you may like to take an optional late afternoon horse-drawn carriage ride to the lake for a relaxing boat trip.

Day 12: Granada/Masaya/Managua
Today you’re free to enjoy the leisurely pace of Granada further, or to join our full-day pre-bookable optional excursion to Managua, the capital of Nicaragua and also its largest city. It’s a hive of activity, and you’ll learn of a fascinating history punctuated with earthquakes, civil wars and revolution. En route, you’ll stop off in Masaya to explore its fascinating markets and enjoy lunch before paying a visit to the breathtaking Masaya Volcano National Park for a glimpse into the smoking crater.

Day 13: Jacó
Today you’ll cross the border back into Costa Rica, driving south to the central Pacific region and the coastal area of Jacó for a three-night stay. This lively seaside village has a variety of restaurants, bars and shops, all within walking distance of your hotel.

Day 14: Carara National Park
This morning join our included excursion to the Carara National Park, a major centre for ecological research and one of the country’s best areas for birdwatching. Among the many species that call the park their home is the beautiful scarlet macaw. This afternoon, you can join an optional, pre-bookable tropical mangrove cruise along the Tarcoles River, where you’ll be able to look out for iguanas and birds as well as crocodiles in their natural habitat – this area is famous for having one of the world’s largest wild crocodile populations.

Day 15: Manuel Antonio National Park
Today, you’ll take an included trip to Manuel Antonio National Park, on Costa Rica’s Pacific coast. This beautiful and unspoiled reserve is home to monkeys, toucans and a host of other wonderful wildlife. A guided walk through the park is included, and you can then take time to stroll through the village or spend some time relaxing on the beach.

Day 16: San José/UK
After breakfast there is the final opportunity to explore the rainforest with an optional aerial tram ride before returning to San José to transfer to the airport for your return flight to the UK via Madrid.

Day 17: UK
You’ll arrive back in the UK.

Please note
We want you to get the most from your holiday with us so please be advised that this tour is not suitable for anyone with limited mobility.

Accommodation throughout is in hotels of a comfortable standard, typical of the hotels you will stay in are:

Hotel Alta in San José
Pachira Lodge in Tortuguero
Tilajari Resort in Muelle de San Carlos
Montaña Monteverde Hotel in Monteverde
Gran Francia Hotel in Granada
Morgan’s Cove Hotel in Jacó
All hotels except the Montaña Monteverde feature a pool and all are of a three-star standard. All guest rooms have en suite facilities.

All hotels will be confirmed in your final documentation.


Included excursions and visits

San José city tour (half day)
Tortuguero National Park visit (full day)
Monteverde coffee farm visit
Monteverde Cloud Forest nature reserve visit (half day)
Carara National Park visit (half day)
Manuel Antonio National Park visit (full day)
Granada tour (half day)

Optional excursions

Hanging Bridges of Arenal visit (half day)
Peñas Blancas River trip (half day)
Tabacon hot springs visit and dinner (half day)
Tarcoles River mangrove cruise (half day)
Managua and Masaya Volcano National Park tour (full day)

Your holiday includes

Scheduled flights, overseas transfers & other transportation
15 nights’ accommodation with breakfast, plus 4 lunches and 2 dinners
The services of a Travelsphere Tour Manager and Local Guides
Hotel porterage (one bag per person)
All airport taxes and security charges
UK Airline Passenger Duty
All state and local taxes

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TravelsphereWith 50 years’ experience in arranging escorted tours to exciting destinations across the globe, Travelsphere have built an excellent reputation founded on quality and value.

By choosing a Travelsphere escorted holiday you can travel with confidence, knowing that every aspect of your holiday has been carefully planned and arranged from start to finish. Further to this they are ATOL bonded and members of ABTA.

Travelsphere’s thorough planning of travel arrangements, itineraries and accommodation combined with the unique insight of their knowledgeable Tour Managers and Local Guides will enable you to experience the culture, traditions and hidden away places less accessible to other travellers.

Our Opinion
“Travelsphere are one of the biggest names in the Escorted Tour market. Finely tuned over the last 50 years their tours have been tried, tested and refined by thousands of customers.”

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