14 Day Costa Rica & Nicaragua Tour

Coastal Wonders, Cloud Forest, Lakes & Volcanoes
TOURCODE: CR2

Duration:
14 Days

Activity Level:
2

When To Go:
Feb, Nov

Countries Visited:
2

Arrive In / Depart From:
San Jose / Managua

Max Group Size:
18

Tour Style:
Cultural

Price From:

  Overnight in: San Jose, Tortuguero, Arenal, Monteverde, Quepos, Rincon de la Vieja, Granada, Managua

Discover the country's true culture with the help of experienced local guides.

  • Small group sizes to help escape the beaten path.
  • All-inclusive with top-rated restaurants and hotels.
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Tour Overview
Tour Overview
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Countries Visited: 2 Activity Level: 2 Tour Style: Cultural

On our Costa Rica & Nicaragua tour you will discover how these two friendly neighbours earn their reputation as a natural wonderland on this two-week adventure through two of the most exciting and striking countries in Central America, and indeed, the world.

Literally translated as the 'rich coast', Costa Rica is a land of varied topography and broad spectrum of ecosystem. Between its borders, Costa Rica encompasses white-sand Caribbean beaches, volcanic mountainscapes, lush, velveteen jungle, low-lying plains and swampland. We head to Tortuguero Park, where we take to the waters to glide along canals that are lined with virgin wilderness on both shores.

The mist-encircled trees in Monteverde Cloud Forest provide a setting that seems as though it was taken straight out of a fairytale and Rincon de la Vieja National Park yields hidden lakes, hot-springs and beautiful volcanic landscapes.

Our time in Nicaragua features beautifully-located Granada, with views of multiple volcanic islands, charming colonial architecture, and some of the friendliest people you'll ever meet.

 


 

Dates & Prices
Dates & Prices

 

Prices below are per person, twin-sharing costs in US Dollars (USD). Pricing does not include airfare to/from the tour and any applicable taxes. For single supplement rates and taxes (if any), please refer to below Prices & Dates table. For general information on flights to/from the tour, click here.

 

Select a date below to reserve your spot:

 

Optional Single Supplement: $1020 USD (number of singles limited).

 


 

Full Itinerary
Full Itinerary

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Day 1 Arrival in San Jose
Today we arrive in San Jose, Costa Rica.

San Jose, the capital of Costa Rica, is on a plateau in the Central Valley at 1200 m (3,700 ft), ringed by lush green mountains and valleys. The population of this city is probably half of the whole country! The main downtown area is a bustling collection of well-laid-out streets filled with bustling traffic and lined with eclectic, historic architecture. On the surface, it is a gritty downtown area, but you'll also find friendly people, quirky spots, and the historic side of San Jose which might just change your initial impression.

Overnight in San Jose.

Included Meal(s): Dinner



Day 2 San Jose - Boat to Tortuguero
This morning we travel by bus from San Jose through Braulio Carillo National Park, one of Costa Rica's largest. If season/harvest time permits, we will visit a working banana plantation and then pass through a region known for its cocoa production. We then board our riverboat* and spend the afternoon journeying through myriad interconnecting rivers and canals that take us finally to the Caribbean coast and Tortuguero Park.

The park is a water thoroughfare which is a 160 km (100 mile) stretch of natural rivers, lagoons and estuaries, and connecting man-made waterways that run almost to the Nicaraguan border. The canal is the main "highway" of the northern coastal region, complete with directional signs and branches from the main trunk route.

As we go along the canal, keep a keen lookout for views of pastel-coloured toucans and monkeys of various type; if we're lucky, a lazy sloth hanging from a branch, and maybe a coati or two roaming the forest. Stands of mangroves and water hyacinth appear here and there. Scattered along the way are people, too -- fishers and farmers whose dugouts serve all the purposes of pickup trucks elsewhere. Mostly the banks remain wild, and the calls of monkeys and whistles of birds predominate over the noises of humans.

* We strongly recommend that travellers bring a smaller bag to take to Tortuguero due to limited sapce on the boat and the lack of personnel to help you with baggage. Your luggage will be securely stored until we are reunited with it upon departure from Tortuguero.

Overnight in Tortuguero.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner



Day 3 Tortuguero: Forest Walk & Village
Tortuguero Park is a fascinating place to explore. An early morning boat ride offers an opportunity to observe an awakening coastal rain forest full of lush vegetation and unique bird life.

After lunch we visit the village of Tortuguero accessible only by river boat; you may choose to walk on the Caribbean beach where several turtle species lay their eggs each year. We will visit the Tortuguero Museum with its excellent displays pertaining to the ecology of the area and an informative video presentation specific to turtle conservation in Tortuguero and the entire Caribbean region (the Green Sea and Hawksbill turtles' nesting season runs from July to October with the peak in August, and the Leatherback turtles nest from February to April. It is possible to see individual turtles at any time of the year).

NOTE: The exact order of our activities in Tortuguero may vary depending on weather and other variables.

Overnight in Tortuguero.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner



Day 4 Tortuguero - Baldi Hotsprings - Arenal/La Fortuna Area
After an early breakfast we travel by boat 1½-hour to reunite with our land transport and then continue by road to the La Fortuna/Arenal area.

We travel through rolling hills covered with sugar cane fields to overnight near Arenal Volcano. We make a stop at the Baldi Hotsprings (located near Arenal and outside the Risk Zones established by the National Prevention of Risks and Emergency Commission). Here a geothermally-heated river flows through beautifully landscaped grounds featuring many plant and tree species and great birdlife. We will have time to relax in or around the various pools (bring a towel). The springs feature several hot pools with different temperatures fed by individual springs and three swim-up bars.

This evening (weather & volcanic activity permitting) we can view the volcano.

Overnight at Arenal/La Fortuna.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast and Dinner



Day 5 Arenal - Monteverde Cloud Forest
Today we travel through a rustic rural countryside to the Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve area (+/- 4 hours).

Covered in a mantle of moss, ferns and orchids, this private reserve is home to over 400 species of birds and a great number of animals. The forest is created by the winds, particular temperature and moisture conditions, and mountainous topography which combine during the dry season to hold a steady cloud cover along the continental divide. The rains and the moisture in the air nourish trees and plants rooted in the ground, as well as many plants that live at the upper levels of the forest, and take their nutrients directly from the mist and dust that pass through the air. The result is an enchanted fairy-tale environment where trees are laden with orchids, bromeliads, mosses and ferns that obscure their branches, where the moisture and mild temperatures and sunlight filtered by the forest canopy encourage the exuberance of begonias, heliconias, philodendron and many other tropical plants in every available space on the ground.

This afternoon we have a guided tour of the "Butterfly Garden" where butterflies and other endemic insects are raised and protected in a controlled environment allowing scientists to study them -- their place in the food chain and their response to things like increased pollution and climate change.

Overnight in Monteverde.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast and Dinner



Day 6 Monteverde Cloud Forest
We have a full morning exploring the cloud forest reserve with the help of a local naturalist guide. There is more to the forest than the trees and lesser plants. Of over 320 bird species, the most notable is the quetzal with its long arc of tail feathers. Assorted trogons in addition to the quetzal inhabit the reserve, along with more than 50 varieties of hummingbird. About 500 kinds of butterfly are found at Monteverde. Among the more than 100 mammalian species are howler, white-faced and spider monkeys, coatis and their cousins, raccoons; as well as the rarely observed pumas, ocelots, jaguars, tapirs, and kinkajous.

This afternoon you may choose to go on an optional "Canopy Walk" excursion, located within the cloud forest. Suspension foot-bridges are strung across deep gorges allowing one to get a bird's eye view of the forest from a totally different perspective than we experienced this morning. At a leisurely pace, one can complete this easy and fascinating walk in about 90 minutes. Your Tour Leader can help you plan this activity (your Tour Leader will advise re the current price while on tour).

REMEMBER: This can be a wet and windy place by definition; you should be prepared for varied conditions.

Overnight at Monteverde.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast and Dinner



Day 7 Monteverde - Quepos
This morning we descend from the interior mountains to the Pacific Coast and continue southward to the town of Quepos, gateway for the Manuel Antonio National Park, an unspoiled haven of natural beauty on the shores of the Pacific.

The Pacific coast of Costa Rica is more developed than the Caribbean coast, so dozens of charming beach towns line the way. The Pacific coast is also home to more than 10 national parks and many other reserves, wildlife refuges, tropical dry forests, rainforests, mangroves, wetlands and coral reefs. These parks offer great opportunities for some unique wildlife encounters, such as howler monkeys, white-faced capuchin, and spider monkey, both inside and outside the parks and reserves.

Nestled along the picturesque Pacific coast of Costa Rica, Quepos serves as the perfect starting point to explore Manuel Antonio National Park. With its walkable streets and relaxed vibe, this is a perfect locale for travellers seeking an authentic experience in a tropical setting.

Overnight near Quepos.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast and Dinner



Day 8 Manuel Antonio National Park
This morning we enjoy a leisurely walk through part of Manuel Antonio Park. While strolling the forest trails and the white sand beaches, we'll likely encounter monkeys, iguanas, sea creatures and bird life of amazing variety. After our morning walk, you may like to continue to explore the park and return to the hotel by taxi on your own.

Manuel Antonio National Park is an area of sand curving around a bay strewn with islands of rock, and shaded by green bordering forests. All are back-dropped by dramatic cliffs. Manuel Antonio beach is one of the few places in Costa Rica where unspoiled primary forest grows right to the high-tide mark, allowing visitors to bathe at times in the shade.

South Espadilla is the northernmost of the park's beaches, followed by calmer Manuel Antonio beach, offshore of which are some coral spots. Third Beach has tidal pools where brightly coloured fish and eels are temporarily stranded. Last is Puerto Escondido, access to which is made difficult by the bordering rocky promontory.

Overnight near Quepos.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast and Dinner



Day 9 Quepos - Crocodile Safari - Rincon de la Vieja
Today we head north again on the Pan-American Highway and travel to Rincon de la Vieja National Park. En route we'll enjoy an informative crocodile safari.*

The safari provides visitors with an exciting opportunity to enjoy one of Costa Rica's most beautiful ecosystems. The tour takes place along the Tarcoles River and is accompanied by a bilingual guide, who will share interesting information and spot an assortment of critters. Most notably, the Tarcoles River is known for its abundance of crocodiles, some of which can grow up to 15 ft in length. Other animal sightings include over 50 species of bird -- including the rare scarlet macaw -- as well as an assortment of iguanas and lizards. Heading downstream, the boat will also pass through Estero Guacalillo, an extensive mangrove system which houses four different types of mangrove trees.

Known for its stunning diversity of flora and fauna, Rincon is home to two volcanoes, the Rincon de la Vieja and the Santa Maria, as well as six different volcanic peaks and thirty two rivers and streams. The park has small geysers, bubbling mud pots and mineral hot springs that have earned it the name, "Costa Rica's Yellowstone". One more thing that is unique from Rincon de la Vieja Volcano is the Vrizea Vulcanicola bromeliad, endemic to this park and Costa Rica.

* Occasionally this visit may be impacted by high tides.

Overnight near Rincon de la Vieja.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast and Dinner



Day 10 Rincon de la Vieja National Park
We will have a full morning with a somewhat CHALLENGING walk (undulating, uneven terrain -- talk to your Tour Leader re your suitability) along Las Pailas Trail to view the best volcanic activity you can see in the country. The trail takes us through cloud forest, open grassy slopes and near a wide array of volcanic features including impressive boiling mud pots, fumaroles, and thermal streams.

This afternoon you can continue your on-foot exploration on your own or take part in a number of optional activities, including river tubing, horseback riding and/or hot springs soaking. Or you can simply relax and enjoy the birdsong and magnificent views.

Overnight near Rincon de la Vieja National Park.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast and Dinner



Day 11 Rincon de la Vieja, Costa Rica - Granada, Nicaragua
Today we continue north to Granada, Nicaragua (have your passports handy!).

The country of Nicaragua derives its name from Nicaro, the name of the Nahuatl-speaking tribe which inhabited the shores of Lago de Nicaragua before the Spanish conquest of the Americas, and the Spanish word Agua, meaning water, due to the presence of the large lakes Lago de Nicaragua (Cocibolca) and Lago de Managua (Xolotlan), as well as lagoons and rivers in the region. At the time of the Spanish conquest, Nicaragua was the name given to the narrow strip of land between Lake Nicaragua and the Pacific Ocean. This is the largest yet most sparsely populated country in Central America.

Granada is set by Lago Nicaragua and is one of the most beautiful cities in Central America. Countless historical buildings share the city's cobblestone streets with elegant homes and tranquil parks, an urban elegance complemented by nearby natural attractions.

Upon arrival you'll be able to explore Granada before our evening meal. Of interest are the Fort La Polvora, Xalteva Church, Xaltera walls, and the church La Merced. A walk through the Main Square Colon takes you to the Cathedral, the Casa de los Leones, and the old Convent of San Francisco, where you can admire the impressive stone-carved statues with animal and human form.

Overnight in Granada.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast and Dinner



Day 12 Granada: Omtepe Island Excursion
Today we will enjoy an excursion to Nicaragua's famous Ometepe Island, one of the most impressive sights in Central America. The name Ometepe means 'two hills' in the native Nahuatl language. The island measures 276 square kilometers and it houses two majestic volcanoes connected through a small strip of land. The two volcanoes, Concepcion and Maderas, are joined by a low isthmus to form one island in the shape of an hourglass. Concepcion Volcano is still active, and most recently erupted on December 5, 2007.

Ometepe is somewhat isolated from the rest of Nicaragua and therefore maintains its special mystery and charm. After driving along the southern shore of the lake to the boat dock, we will board the ferry for the 1.5 hour ferry ride on Lake Nicaragua to Ometepe Island where we will enjoy a sightseeing tour of the island, including some petroglyphs.

For lunch (included today instead of dinner) we will make a break at Santo Domingo Beach, and then we will explore the harbour town of Moyogalpa. At the end of our day we will then travel by ferry back to the shore where we begin our drive back to Granada.

Overnight in Granada (dinner on your own this evening).

Included Meal(s): Breakfast and Lunch



Day 13 Granada - Masaya Volcano National Park - Managua: City Tour
Today travel to Managua and have a city tour on arrival.

En route we stop at the Masaya Volcano National Park, which comprises two volcanoes and five craters. The volcanoes have erupted several times in history, and were feared by both the indigenous people and the Spanish conquerors. The eruptions have had a dramatic impact on the surroundings. Rocks and volcanic ashes still cover the area surrounding the volcanoes. The nature is rough yet peaceful. Different types of vegetation appeared after the eruptions. Visitors can peek over the edge at the Masaya Volcano and look into the impressive crater, which is continuously emitting smoke and sulphur gases. We also stop at Laguna de Apoyo, the largest crater lagoon in Central America at 6 km across.

In Managua, we will visit historical sites such as the Old Cathedral, destroyed by the earthquake of 1972; the Presidential House, the National Palace of Culture, the waterfront, and the National Museum. We also stop for a photo at the new Metropolitan Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception of Mary.

Overnight in Managua.

Included Meal(s): Breakfast and Dinner



Day 14 Departure
Departure from Managua.

BUEN VIAJE!

Included Meal(s): Breakfast

 


 

Trip Info
Trip Info

Inclusions
Breakfast and dinner daily (hotels and local restaurants).

All transport, accommodation, sightseeing and entrance fees for sites noted as 'visited' in the detailed itinerary.

Gratuities for local guides, drivers, restaurant staff, hotel porters (if available).

Airport transfers for land & air customers and for early arriving/late departing land & air customers who book both their flights AND extra hotel nights through us.

Exclusions
International airfare to/from the tour.

Tour Leader gratuity, lunches, drinks, personal items (phone, laundry, etc), departure taxes, and international air taxes (if applicable).

Airport transfers for Land Only customers.

Optional trip cancellation insurance.

Seasonality and Weather
This tour is offered twice a year.

In the the Central Valley of Costa Rica, the average temperature is 22C (72F). In the coastal areas the temperature is much hotter and humid. The "green" season here runs May-November; the warm/drier season is Dec-May, though temperature differences between summer and winter are slight.

The best time to visit Nicaragua is between November and May — the country's dry season. You'll see plenty of sunny days, with temperatures sitting between 28-28 C (77 to 82°F) in the majority of the country.

Transport and Travel Conditions
Road transport by private air-conditioned motor coach, 12-30 seats depending on ultimate group size (see 'group size'). The road we travel roads are generally good though we do have some long (though scenic) road journeys.

As this is primarily nature-focused experience, most of our activities will occur outdoors and involve walks on uneven/rocky surfaces at a leisurely pace. You should be prepared with the right footwear and be capable of being on your feet for several hours in order to fully enjoy what these destinations have to offer.

Our difficulty level "2" rating refers to the above-mentioned busy days, walking tours on uneven terrain, lack of handrails (public and elsewhere, ie shower stalls), and fatigue that can be caused by heat and humidity in coastal locations.

Am I suitable for this tour? Please refer to our self-assessment form.

Accommodation
Well-located, heated/air-conditioned, mid-range (3 star) hotels with en suite toilet and bath throughout (probably shower only). Single rooms are limited and likely smaller than doubles. Hotel porter service is sometimes available (see 'inclusions') though you should be independent with your luggage. Some hotels have outdoor swimming pools.

For more information, click on the "Map & Hotels" Tab

Staff and Support
Tour Leader, driver/s, and local step-on guides at various locations.

Group Size
Maximum 18 plus Tour Leader

Tour Extensions
This tour is part of a series that can be upgraded to make for a longer trip. For more options, please refer to tour code/s:

18 Day Panama & Costa Rica Tour
FEB NOV
TOUR CODE: PA2
Tour Overview
Panama, Costa Rica & Nicaragua
FEB NOV
TOUR CODE: PA3
Tour Overview

 


 

Map & Hotels
Map & Hotels

Regions visited: Central America
Countries visited: Costa Rica and Nicaragua


*The red tour trail on the map does not represent the actual travel path.


The following is a list of sample hotels at some locations included on this tour. The hotels shown here are meant to provide a general sense of the standard of hotel we usually aim for; they are not necessarily confirmed for your chosen departure.


Sleep Inn
3 Star Accommodation 3 Star Accommodation 3 Star Accommodation
Location: San Jose
Country: Costa Rica
The Sleep Inn® Paseo Las Damas hotel is in an excellent location in downtown San José, just 20 minutes from the Juan Santamaría International Airport, making our hotel a special place to ... and end your vacation in Costa Rica.
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Pachira Lodge
3 Star Accommodation 3 Star Accommodation 3 Star Accommodation
Location: Tortuguero
Country: Costa Rica
Strategically located in front of the main lagoon, just 5 minutes by boat from the National Tortuguero Park and 3 minutes from the picturesque town by the same name. 14 hectares (34 ... of full of exotic flora and fauna. 94 comfortable rooms with private bathrooms, hot water and ceiling fans. Available with one King or two double full size beds.
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Baldi Hotsprings Resort
3 Star Accommodation 3 Star Accommodation 3 Star Accommodation
Location: Arenal
Country: Costa Rica
Honeymooners and everybody who wants to enjoy a peaceful getaway. Rest and relaxation in this heavenly setting at the base of the volcano. 25 Thermal Water Pools Amidst the tropical rainforest, these ... thermal water pools are filled by crystalline waterfalls, for the use and enjoyment of al visitors. The purity of the water will make you feel like you are floating in a oasis of healing, with birds singing all around and the sound of falling water that invites you to relax and recover your wellness and quality of life.
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Hotel Manuel Antonio
3 Star Accommodation 3 Star Accommodation 3 Star Accommodation
Location: Quepos
Country: Costa Rica
Hotel Manuel Antonio has its own on-site restaurant, providing a convenient option for those who wish to eat in. You will find room services and a tour desk at the property. WiFi ... public areas is free.
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Rincon de la Vieja Lodge
3 Star Accommodation 3 Star Accommodation 3 Star Accommodation
Location: Rincon de la Vieja
Country: Costa Rica
Rinconcito Lodge is a family project with more than 10 years of existence that was born with the aim of giving a twist to the attractions of the area, for the use ... its natural riches and the excellent climate that prevails. The hotel is located between the volcano Rincon de la Vieja and the Miravalles volcano, just a few kilometers from Daniel Oduber Airport.
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Hotel El Patio del Malinche
3 Star Accommodation 3 Star Accommodation 3 Star Accommodation
Location: Granada
Country: Nicaragua
Hotel El Patio del Malinche is situated in a renovated, colonial house where the original style of houses from Granada has been combined with modern hotel amenities like wireless internet, a pool, ... air conditioning. There are two interior patios in the hotel. The central location, only a few blocks from Granada's central park, makes it possible to easily reach the interesting sites in town.
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Camino Real Managua
5 Star Accommodation 5 Star Accommodation 5 Star Accommodation 5 Star Accommodation 5 Star Accommodation
Location: Managua
Country: Nicaragua
This polished hotel is 2 km from Augusto Cesar Sandino International Airport and 11 km from the modern Catedral Metropolitana de la Purísima Concepción.

 


 

Gallery

 


 

Frequently Asked Questions
ASK A QUESTION
FAQ
Frequently Asked Questions
ASK A QUESTION
01. What is the maximum number of participants on a trip?
Most of our tours carry a maximum of 18 participants; some tours (ie hiking tours) top out at 16. In the event that we do not achieve our minimum complement by our 60-day deadline, we may offer group members the option of paying a "small-group surcharge" as an alternative to cancellation. If all group members agree, we will confirm the trip at existing numbers; this surcharge is refundable in the event that we ultimately achieve our regular minimum. If the small group surcharge is not accepted, we will offer a refund of your deposit or a different trip of your choice.
02. Can I extend my tour either at the beginning or end? What about stopovers?
Yes, you can extend your tour either at the beginning or the end and we can book accommodation in our tour hotel. Stopovers are often permitted, depending on air routing. Stopovers usually carry a "stopover" fee levied by the airline.
03. How do I make a reservation? How and when do I pay?
The easiest way to make a reservation is via our website; during office hours, you are also more than welcome to contact us by telephone. A non-refundable deposit is payable at the time of booking; if a reservation is made within 60 days, full payment is required. Some trips require a larger deposit. If international airline bookings require a non-refundable payment in order to secure space or the lowest available fare, we will require an increase in deposit equal to the cost of the ticket(s). Early enrolment is always encouraged as group size is limited and some trips require greater preparation time. Once we have received your deposit, we will confirm your space and send you a confirmation package containing your trip itinerary, any visa/travel permit related documents, invoice, clothing and equipment recommendations, general information on your destination(s), and forms for you to complete, sign and return to us. Your air e-tickets (if applicable), final hotel list, final trip itinerary, and instructions on how to join your tour, will be sent approximately 2-3 weeks prior to departure.
04. What about cancellations, refunds, and transfers?
Please review our cancellation policy page for details.
05. I am a single who prefers my own room. What is a single supplement?
All of our tours have a single supplement for those who want to be guaranteed their own room at each location. This supplement is a reflection of the fact that most hotels around the world do not discount the regular twin-share rate for a room by 50% for only one person occupying a room. Most hotels will give a break on the price, but usually in the range of 25-30% of the twin-share rate. This difference, multiplied by each night, amounts to the single supplement. The conventional amount can also vary from country to country and some destinations are more expensive than others for single occupancy. In order to be "single friendly," the supplements we apply are not a profit centre for us and we do our best to keep them as reasonable as possible. On most tours we limit the number of singles available, not to be punitive, but rather because many hotels allow for only a limited number of singles; some smaller hotels at remote locations also have a limited number of single rooms available. Please note that most single rooms around the world are smaller than twin-share rooms and will likely have only one bed.
06. Do you have a shared accommodation program?
Yes! If you are single traveller and are willing to share, we will do our best to pair you with a same-gender roommate. On most of our tours, if we fail to pair you, we will absorb the single supplement fee and you will default to a single room at no extra charge. At some destinations, however, where single rooms are not significantly discounted, or not at all, we may apply a "mandatory" single in the event that we cannot find you a share partner. This is usually 50% of the usual supplement, but can be as much as 100%. If applicable, this proviso will be noted on each tour page on this website, on your invoice, and in our tour date/price book (available for download under "Resources").

 

What People are Saying
Richard R.
North Newton, KS - US
We felt like it was an excellent tour - great itinerary, tour leader and tour group. Our favorite elements were Tortuguero and Cloud Forest. We thought all the local guides were wonderful. The bus was very comfortable and the driver was excellent. Our tour leader was always on top of things and always answered our questions. He had excellent knowledge of Costa Rica and Nicaragua. He was very responsive to needs and concerns.
Wilma M.
Delta, BC - CA
Hard to decide what the best part was! I really enjoyed Tortuguero - so different - a jungle Venice. The cloud forest was also fascinating. Manuel Antonio was lovely and Grenada was a very interesting city. The local guides were all very personable, polite, and knowledgeable . Their English skills were excellent. Our tour leader picked great restaurants and the food was very good. Our tour leader was masterful. He had a great personality, was patient with questions and was never out of sorts. All was well organized. He was informative about the areas . He also picked great places to eat and had a really good sense of humour. The hotels on this tour were excellent. It was a wonderful tour , with an excellent leader, and I shall speak very well of it.
Maurice D.
North Vancouver, BC - CA
We really enjoyed the boat rides in Torterego, the organic farm visit in Arenal. Our tour leader's wealth of local knowledge was very impressive. The local guides were all were very knowledgeable and very passionate about nature and/or their countries. Busses were very comfortable and air conditioned. Our tour leader picked very nice local restaurants. We enjoyed all of them. The hotels were excellent. We really had a holiday of a lifetime.
Douglas C.
Victoria, BC - CA
Particularly enjoyed the National parks and wildlife,especially Tortuguero, Arenal, Monte Verde, Manuel Antonio. Granada and the Masaya volcano at night were also memorable. The local guides were excellent. The food was very good. The tour leader was terrific - we were very impressed. Our hotels on this trip were very good. We had a great trip and really enjoyed our time.
Marguerite F.
Fenelon Falls, ON - CA
Tortuguero--fabulous first look at birds, frogs and plants. Baldi Hot springs--a great reward. Fun! Butterfly garden was memorable because of the fabulous funny woman who works there. Canopy walk: lovely. Zip line: most thrilling ever for a grandma! River tubing was the most fun ever! Granada is the most gorgeous thing in Nicaragua. All guides were well-informed, spoke good English, and related to us for questions and conversation. We had a fabulous bus! I was most pleased to get local food. Laura was our tour leader, she s a gem! WE really lucked in. This is a tour with lots of variety and activity.
Vinnie B.
Kitchener, ON - CA
The excursions we enjoyed were the boat trips from Tortuguero, and Masaya volcano museum and rim. The guides at the National parks were all very knowledgeable and enthusiastic. Our driver Oday was superb. Our main bus was very comfortable. Laura, our tour leader, was calm and cheerful throughout. She worked hard all the time. Nothing was too much trouble. You could see that her personality smoothed any problems that occurred. Laura was aware of the local political problems, and explained them well. She even read out some articles and poetry which were of interest to us. I have taken eight other trips- mostly with one company. As far as I am concerned, Adventures Abroad is by far the best value for my money.
Judy D.
Dexter, NY - US
We've traveled with AA before and enjoyed it immensely. All of the local guides were excellent, especially Johnny in Tortuguero. Enjoyed all excursions. Laura, our tour leader, was astoundingly good. She went out of her way to try to accommodate individual needs. She handled it all without negatively affecting anyone or holding up the group. Everything went smoothly for us, it seemed she knew everyone and everywhere we went. She was fun! And interested in exploring and accepting unusual events and that was contagious. She presented us with great information. Terrific tour.
Monika Q.
Toronto, ON - CA
We enjoyed all of the excursions. The boatride in Tortuguero, the "butterfly garden" tour, the boat trip in Granada and the excursion in the cloud forest with the park naturalist stand out as especially enjoyable.
Richard S.
Port Williams, NS - CA
An interesting tour - we saw many parts of the country, and the excursion into Nicaragua was a highlight.
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Countries Visited: 2

Costa Rica; Nicaragua.
Activity Level: 2

These are particularly busy tours that feature a lot of moving around, sometimes by train and short journeys on local transport. Walking tours of towns and cities are leisurely but you should be prepared to be on your feet for several hours. Some of our cultural trips that occur at high altitude and/or require greater independence with baggage handling (at hotels, airports, train stations) also fall into this category.
Tour Style: Cultural

These three- and four-star hotel-based, "soft adventure" trips concentrate on the culture, history, and natural attributes of our destination. Though there are no strenuous activities built into these tours, you need to be prepared for some full days with some early starts, plenty of walking on uneven surfaces through villages, cities and archaeological sites, and not a lot of "down time." Independence, reasonable fitness, and an ability to be steady on one's feet are critical in order for you to get the most out of these programs.
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