Zip-lining through cloudforest, observing nesting turtles, rainforests alive with the chaotic symphony of insects… On a tailor-made holiday to Costa Rica with Audley, you’ll see the highlights — and much more — your way. We’ll design your ideal trip with you, paying close attention to your interests, your travel style and your budget. Audley Costa Rica specialists know the country inside out and can lead you to experiences you won’t find in a guidebook.
AAA Travel introduces one of our newest partner additios, Audley Travel. With trips to more than 80 destinations across the world, Audley's mission is to offer you the most unique, meaningful and personalized travel experience possible. Each trip is handcrafted down to the finest details - your tastes, budget and interests by a country specialist with extensive firsthand knowledge of your desired destination. Experts share their passion, advice and commitment to quality to design an authentic travel experience that stays with you long after you return home.
What You May Experience:
Wake up to the throaty call of a howler monkey. Seek the vibrant green plumage of the rare resplendent quetzal in San Gerardo de Dota. Drift though the flooded forests and intricate canals of Tortuguero National Park. Bathe in mineral springs near Arenal Volcano. White-water raft down the Pacuare River. Unwind away from the crowds on the dark-sand beaches decorating the Northern Pacific coast. Tangled primary rainforest of the Osa Peninsula. Gentle surf swells at Tamarindo Beach. Scarlet macaws, tree frogs and sloths in Corcovado National Park. What excites you? Travel at your own pace, in your own style, with the confidence that you will have the best options, wherever you go.
The Audley Way:
Browse ideas on the Audley website, then speak to a country specialist to gain firsthand advice and start planning your trip. A conversation with a country specialist will ensure they understand who you are and what you want.
Your specialist will design a full itinerary based on your tastes and interests. They will work with you to perfect the trip until every detail is just right. The itinerary will reflect your requests as well as incorporate the specialist's local insight.
After confirming your plans, your specialist will be on hand to answer any questions you have and provide helpful tips to prepare for your departure.
The adventure begins. Audley's service continues throughout your trip while abroad, you'll be in the capable hands of Audley's partners and have access to support 24-hours a day.
Nobody will be more excited to hear about your trip than your Country Specialist. They'll call you upon your return to see how things went and suggest a cure or two for any remaining wanderlust. Audley will be ready to help you start planning the next adventure.
Sample Itinerary - Classic Costa Rica tour
Day 1: San José & Central Valley
On arrival in Costa Rica's capital city, San José, you're met at the airport and driven to your hotel by private transfer with an English-speaking guide accompanying you. Relax after your flight in preparation for your early start tomorrow.
Day 2: Tortuguero & the Caribbean Coast
Your shared coach transfer will pick you up between 6am and 7am for the journey to Tortuguero National Park, stopping for a hearty breakfast on the way. The journey takes a morning but the route is a scenic one, passing through primary forest. The roads eventually peter out: you'll take a shared motorised boat transfer to your lodge in time for lunch. In the afternoon you might go on a guided jungle hike as part of a small group, or take a guided visit to tiny Tortuguero Village.
Day 3: Tortuguero & the Caribbean Coast
Enjoy a second day of guided small group trips, exploring the landscape of Tortuguero. Today you might take a boat trip along the flooded forest connected by a series of waterways. Your guide will help you spot wildlife, such as caimans, tropical water-birds, howler and capuchin monkeys. Look out for iguanas sitting on tree branches and macaws winging their way over your head.
Day 4: Arenal Volcano
Today you travel from Tortuguero to Arenal by shared boat and coach transfer. After a stop for lunch in Guápiles, you'll take a three hour private transfer to the Arenal Volcano region, arriving mid-afternoon. Spend the rest of the day relaxing at your hotel: bathe in the hot springs in the hotel's grounds, or take a swim in the pool.
Day 5: Arenal Volcano
This morning visit the Arenal Hanging bridges with your private guide. On this canopy walkway tour through the rainforest, your guide will point out its distinctive flora and birdlife. In the afternoon, explore Arenal Volcano National Park as part of a small group tour, visiting a lava wall. Your guide will explain about the history of this active volcano. Afterwards, visit a hot springs complex for an evening bathe. A traditional dinner of casado (meat, rice and beans) is included.
Day 6: Arenal Volcano
A day at leisure to relax or spend as you wish. Relax by the hotel pool and (if it's a clear day), take in the views of Arenal's volcanic cone. If you're looking for something more energetic, we suggest going kayaking on Arenal lake, zip-lining or white water rafting. Alternatively, visit Caño Negro Wildlife Refuge, take a trip to the Rio Celeste waterfalls, or hike one of the national park's trails
Day 7: Monteverde Cloud Forest
This morning, enjoy some great views of Arenal Lake as you travel four hours to the Monteverde Cloudforest by private transfer and with an accompanying private guide. En route, enjoy views of mountains and cloudforest, but beware that the road is a little bumpy at times. After arriving at your Swiss-style hotel in the cloudforest region, you'll have the rest of the afternoon to relax by the garden or perhaps explore one of the gentle trails in the hotel grounds.
Day 8: Monteverde Cloud Forest
This morning, expect an early morning wake-up call to head out on a nature walk through the cloudforest with your own specialist guide. You'll learn about this biodiverse environment and its flora, from orchids and bromeliads to trees draped in mosses and ferns. In the afternoon, take a 15 minute shared minibus transfer to the Selvatura complex, a cloudforest conservation project. Lunch is not included, however there is an on-site restaurant.
Day 9: Playa Potrero
Today, experience the dramatic descent from the cool cloudforest highlands toward the warmer Pacific coast in your private transfer. You'll travel along an initially bumpy road before picking up the Pan American Highway to your beach hotel on the Northern Pacific Coast. The journey takes around three and a half hours. Spend the rest of the day relaxing at your hotel or on the beach.
Day 10: Playa Potrero
A day at leisure on the beach. This hotel, situated right on the beachfront, is ideal for just kicking back and relaxing. Stroll along the beach to watch the sunset, relax by the swimming pool, or swim in the sea - the waters are calm here.
Day 11: Playa Potrero
Another day relaxing in your hotel. You may wish to visit the spa.
Day 12: Return Home
Today you'll have a private transfer to San José airport for your onward flight.