Costa Rica – also known as the Switzerland of Central America is also one of the most species-rich countries on earth. Let yourself be enchanted by the fascinating beauty of the landscape and the ever-present hospitality of the locals on the Amadeus guided tour "Gallo". The flora and fauna of the rain and cloud forests, embedded with nature parks and surrounded by volcanoes together with its variety of species and vibrant colours are worldwide quite unique. - Experience "PURA VIDA" - the vitality of the people. Learn about sustainable tourism that is seeking to preserve this unique natural paradise for future generations. With your English speaking Amadeus tour guide you visit five national parks, two active volcanoes, be welcomed as a guest in the home of a typical local family, enjoy a day at the beach and much more.
Day 1: Arrival in San Jose. Your English speaking guide will be waiting to greet you upon arrival at the airport. After a short transfer to your hotel and after a quick check in you will be given your reserved room. Welcome cocktails will be served allowing you to get to know the other participants of the group.
Accommodation: Hotel Buena Vista Lodge. Meal plan: Welcome cocktail.
Day 2: After a hearty breakfast, we depart the capital travelling past the typical coffee plantations, fruit and vegetable fields of the central valley on route to the active Poás Volcano (alt 2704m). At the craters edge you have a fantastic view of the turquoise blue lagoon and the sulphur springs.
With a walk (1 Hour 2700m/light) through the grass and shrub wooded forest draped with mosses and lichens to the picturesque Laguna Botos formed in an extinct crater, here you will experience the fascinating contrast between the lush mountain vegetation and the bizarre volcanic landscape.
In the afternoon a walk (2 Hours 2500m/light) through a Hummingbird and Butterfly garden and along a river bank with 4 impressive waterfalls. A well-secured steel structure allows you a look behind the cascading waters.
Accommodation: Hotel Buena Vista Lodge. Meal Plan: Breakfast, Lunch, La Paz
Day 3: We start our tour early in the morning and our route takes us through the Braulio Carillo National Park, known for its lush vegetation and on into the Atlantic lowlands. Past banana plantations towards La Pavona, where we board a river boat.
The Tortuguero National Park and the cosy lodge are reached after about a 1 hour cruise along tropical rivers. This area protects one of the most important nesting sites of the endangered Green Sea Turtle. After a warm welcome by the staff, then an afternoon a visit the village of Tortuguero.
The rest of the day you can take canal tours offered by Tortuguero companies, visit the Turtle Museum or just enjoy that Caribbean feeling.
Accommodation: Laguna Beach Lodge. Meal Plan: Full board
Day 4: Wildlife observation by boat passing through the many canals in the rain forest.
There is a chance to explore the wildlife of Tortuguero. The dense forest and waterways are home to capuchin monkeys, howler monkeys, spider monkeys, crocodiles, tortoises and countless bird species.
In the afternoon you can visit the National Park or take one of the many tours along the waterways.
Accommodation: Laguna Beach Lodge. Meal Plan: Full board
Day 5: On the way back we can review the experiences once again and enjoy the beautiful river scenery.
After lunch we drive on into the northern Caribbean lowlands and the biological station Tirimbina. In the reserve we will be accompanied by a biologist and a rancho in the rainforest, where we learn all about the cocoa plant and the processing of the cocoa fruit and their historical significance - of course the freshly prepared rainforest chocolate can also be tasted!
We then make our way to the active Arenal volcano. In the late afternoon we reach the town of La Fortuna and the Arenal volcano.
Accommodation: Arenal Manoa. Meal Plan: Breakfast
Day 6: We will walk in the National Park over volcanic sand to the lava fields, acoustically accompanied by the distant rumble from the crater and crashing sounds of rolling boulders. In the fertile earth flourish orchids and other exotic plants - Toucans like to settle in the tree tops. In the afternoon we can relax in the volcanic thermal springs.
An optional excursion is possible well away from the usual tourist routes to Guatuso and the indigenous Maleku. The Maleku endeavour to preserve their traditions and maintain the tribe's own language, customs and craftsmanship. In the local school as well as Spanish Maleku is also taught. Many families make their income from the sale of hand-painted carvings and other works of art; it is very obvious that the people here live in very modest circumstances. In the 1980´s the state built simple concrete houses that do not fit with the traditional houses of the indigenous Indians. During our visit we will learn much about the communities’ history, culture, both past and present. There is a house built in the style of the indigenous Indians (Rancho) where visitors are entertained with typical dishes. The idyllic notion of palm huts and tribal Indians in traditional clothes does not do justice to the village. To meet the people with their friendly open nature enriches us, a nice experience.
Accommodation: Hotel Arenal Manoa. Meal Plan: Breakfast (Optional Lunch-Maleku)
Day 7: After breakfast we drive over the dam of Lake Arenal and visit the Swiss Project Los Heroes and experience a piece of alpine hospitality in a tropical environment.
We ride the houses own excursion train and slowly revolving restaurant from which you have a beautiful view of the Arenal Volcano and Lake Arenal. After a short break we on into the "green mountains" of Monte Verde.
Accommodation at Ficus Hotel. Meal Plan: Breakfast
Day 8: Today we have an adventure with a difference; we go on the so called Skywalk a system of suspension bridges in the dizzying heights of the forest. Here we have the opportunity to gain an insight into the delicate ecosystem of the forest canopy. Due to its location on the Continental Divide an incomparable biodiversity of fauna and flora can be found here. The trees, overgrown with epiphytes point to the high humidity of the cloud forest.
Those who want to test their head for heights have the option to take a Canopy Tour and zip from tree to tree through the forest canopy.
Accommodation: Ficus Hotel. Meal Plan: Breakfast
Day 9: This morning you visit the Finca of the family Bello which is close to Monteverde. Here you will step back in time as you see how the Ticos, that’s what the people of Costa Rica call themselves, produce coffee and work the land for their own needs and income. Following a fresh coffee and a snack taken in the friendly atmosphere with the family you set off in the direction of the Pacific coast to Tamarindo.
Shortly before sunset you arrive at your hotel.
Accommodation: Hotel Tamarindo Diria. Meal Plan: Breakfast, Lunch Bellos
Day 10: A day spent swimming on the sandy beach of the popular resort of Tamarindo.
Organise this day as your mood takes you.
Optional: We recommend a cruise on a sailboat along the coast with its many bays – sometimes sailors even encounter dolphins.
Accommodation: Hotel Tamarindo Diria. Meal Plan: Breakfast
Day 11: We leave the beaches of Tamarindo and begin the return journey to the Central Valley.
En route we stop at the small Curubande village school near Liberia, the provincial capital of Guanacaste. Here we will be warmly welcomed by the children and learn from the dedicated teachers and children a lot about school life in Costa Rica. Our guide gladly translates your questions! After some typical snacks at the school, we return to the capital.
During the farewell dinner, we can look back on the many shared travel experiences.
Accommodation: Studio Hotel. Meal Plan: Breakfast – Snack (Curubande School) – Dinner (selected Restaurant subject to availability)
Day 12: In the morning we explore the centre of San José with its Central Market and the National Theatre and also visit the Gold Museum in the main square.
Finally your transfer to the International airport.
|12 Days / 11 Nights||Single||Double|
|5 - 7 Persons||3295||2505|
|8 - 12 Persons||3005||2215|
|single room supplement||790|
|All Prices in USD|
Services not included
We would like to thank all our guests who have been travelling with us since 1994 in the most beautiful time of the year - their well-deserved holidays. When developing itineraries for groups and individual travelers, selecting our local service partners and caring about the well-being of our guests, we always focus on the highest possible quality standards. Since the founding of Amadeus Travel, we have been committed to sustainable tourism as the only long-term viable form of tourism, e.g. through our social commitment, visiting and supporting private and state nature reserves as well as the training of our team and experienced, fully licenced tour guides.