Savor the natural wonders of Costa Rica as you explore the waterways of Tortuguero, the wildlife-rich reserves of Arenal, and the endless beaches of the Pacific coast.

Request a Tailor-Made Itinerary Request Itinerary or Ask Us A Question or Call 855-215-8690
 Tortuguero Beach Credit:  Etienne Delorieux
 White-faced capuchin monkey
 Dart frog in Costa Rica
 Costa Rica's Arenal Volcano
 Costa Rica hummingbird
 Hanging bridge through the jungle canopy Credit: Christina Victoria
 One of many butterfly species of Costa Rica
 Beach along the coast of Guanacaste
 Aerial view of the Guanacaste coast Credit: Robin Canfield
 Sunset in Guanacaste

Costa Rica Coast to Coast: A Tailor-Made Journey

9 days from $3,950

Savor the natural wonders of Costa Rica as you explore the waterways of Tortuguero, the wildlife-rich reserves of Arenal, and the endless beaches of the Pacific coast.

Request a Tailor-Made Itinerary

or call 855-215-8690


When you travel on a tailor-made journey, you will receive a Friends of the Smithsonian Archivist Circle membership*. Benefits include:

  • A Smithsonian annual engagement calendar with full-color images of exceptional art and artifacts, mailed in the fall.
  • Subscription to Smithsonian, the award-winning magazine of the arts, sciences, and history. Early access to Smithsonian magazine produced events.
  • Invitations to four exclusive virtual programs for Friends of the Smithsonian members with Smithsonian experts.
  • 10% discount in Smithsonian Museum Stores (good on purchases up to $200); 10% discount with the, and Folkways Recordings
  • Recognition in the Friends of the Smithsonian Honor Roll, displayed electronically on the National Mall in the Membership Reception Center
  • Special member rate for tickets to the Smithsonian’s IMAX® theaters and Einstein Planetarium.
  • Free admission to the Cooper-Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum in New York City.
  • A complimentary copy of the annual Smithsonian museum guidebook.
  • Invitation to a special welcome event for new members at a Smithsonian venue.

*Offer only available for first-time Smithsonian members. 

Sample Itinerary

Day 1 - San José, Costa Rica

On arrival in Costa Rica's capital city, San José, you'll be met by your guide at the airport and transfered to your hotel. Enjoy time to relax in preparation for your early start tomorrow.

Day 2 - Tortuguero & the Caribbean Coast

Your shared coach will pick you up early this morning for the journey to Tortuguero National Park. The drive takes the full morning but the route is a scenic one, passing through primary forest. You’ll stop for breakfast along the way. When the road ends, ride a shared motorboat to your lodge in time for lunch. During free time this afternoon, you might go on a guided jungle hike with a small group, or join a guide for a visit to tiny Tortuguero Village, located within the national park. (B,L,D)

Day 3 - Tortuguero & the Caribbean Coast

Spend a full day exploring Tortuguero National Park on guided small group excursions of your choice. Paddle jungle waterways in a kayak or canoe, or take a guided boat trip into the flooded forest. Your guide will help you spot wildlife, such as caimans, macaws, iguanas, and howler and capuchin monkeys. From July to October, keep an eye out for the sea turtles that come to nest here—and give the park its name.  Later, you’ll have the chance to go on a guided nocturnal hike to experience the nightlife of the jungle. (B,L,D)

Day 4 - Arenal Volcano

Travel out of Tortuguero by shared boat and coach, and stop for lunch in Guápiles. Continue by private transfer to the Arenal Volcano region, arriving mid-afternoon. Enjoy the rest of the day to relax at your hotel. There are hot springs and lovely pools on the property as well as tropical gardens that attract more than 100 bird species. (B)

Day 5 - Arenal Volcano

Set out for  the Arenal hanging bridges with your private guide this morning. As you follow the canopy walkway through the treetops, get a bird’s eye perspective on flora and wildlife. In the afternoon, join a small group for a tour of Arenal Volcano National Park. You’ll explore hardened lava flows and learn the history of this volcano, which was active until about ten years ago. Afterwards, enjoy an evening soak in nearby hot springs followed by a traditional casado dinner. (B,D)

Day 6 - Playa Potrero

Today, emerge from the cool cloud forests of the highlands and descend to the Pacific coast, a dramatic change of scenery and climate. After the bumpy roads of the forest, your private driver will follow the Pan American Highway to your beach hotel on the coast of Guanacaste. Arrive in the early afternoon and spend the rest of the day enjoying your beachfront resort. (B)

Day 7 and 8 - Playa Portrero

You’ll have two leisurely days at Playa Potrero to spend as you choose. You might read a book by the poolside or on the beach, indulge in a spa treatment at the hotel, or go horseback riding along the coast. (B)

Day 9 - Depart for home

This morning, transfer to San José airport by private car for your onward flight.

Included meals are denoted as follows: Breakfast (B), Lunch (L), Reception (R), Dinner (D)

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