It’s been a while since I returned home from Costa Rica and the reason for this very delayed post is because I decided while out exploring the land, I would stop doing what I really do all week – work.
I’ve been wanting to share with you one of the best ways to explore Costa Rica in seven days (and how I explored Costa Rica in seven days).
Day 1: Arrival in San Jose
Depending on where you’re coming from, in my case Germany (and a 8 hour time difference), you’re likely going to be jet lagged and exhausted. It’s good to get into the city early and exploring the sights and sounds of the city. I won’t go into details or this post would be longer than necessary, but here’s a good link from Trip Advisor: Top 10 Things to Do in San Jose.
My first nights stay was in the beautiful Hotel Grano de Oro. Stunning and sustainable guest rooms, a delicious restaurant and free wifi – that’s all I need. Though the hotel is also part of a social project called CASA LUZ, a home for adolescent mothers and their children who have been victims of physical and sexual abuse. Casa Luz provides a warm and nurturing environment with trained staff and private apartments.
Day 2: Sarapiqui & Cinco Ceibas Rainforest Reserve
After a delicious breakfast at Hotel Grano de Oro and a briefing from Futuropa and the Costa Rican Tourism Board together with about 9 other journalists, we were off to explore the country! It took about 2.5 hours to arrive in Sarapiqui, and about another 2 hours to figure out how to get to our first stop of the day at Cinco Ceibas Rainforest Reserve. Though it was a bumpy ride, it was one of the most exciting parts of my trip having the opportunity to drive through miles of pineapple fields (something we couldn’t have done had we not of gotten lost).
Cinco Ceibas was beautiful – like a scene out of Without a Paddle when they find the two beautiful woman in the tree house. This place was a natural paradise. You have day tour and retreat package options while visiting, but with our limited time, I decided to jump into a kayak and paddle along the Rio Cuarto river.
That night we stayed at the Selva Verde Lodge, and eco tourism and rainforest reserve. We are also lucky enough to be taken on a guided night walk through the rainforest to explore all the creepy crawly things that come out at night (nocturnal animals).
Day 3: Arenal & the Volcanos
Another couple hours drive and you’ll reach the volcano side town of Arenal. There is nothing more exciting to do while you’re here than to hop into some hot springs and try out all their action packed adventure tours along the volcano.
I had an incredible tour of the Tabacon Grand Spa Thermal Resort and spent a few hours just kicked backed and relaxed in the natural hot springs. If you’ve still got time in the day for a little adventure, head on over to Sky Adventures and get your adrenaline pumping. I took the Sky Tram to the zip lines and then went on a two hour rainforest Sky Walk – absolutely breathtaking views.
Tip: Depending on how long you stay in Arenal (you might be extending your trip here), be sure to check out ASIS: La Fortuna, it is a wildlife rescue centre with quite the stories. You can even volunteer for a while if you’d like. If you’re looking for a place to stay, I would recommend the Hotel Las Colinas, a perfect combination between privacy and affordability.
Day 4: Rancho Humo
A few hours off the beaten path will bring you to a small village in the middle of no where. This is where Rancho Humo Estancia is, in a village called Guanacaste. Rancho Humo is a protected nature conservation and private game reserve with more than 50,000 acres of wetlands. I went on an evening jeep safari (and a morning jeep safari) to take in the beautiful wildlife, birds, cattle and crocodiles that are native to this land. The following morning we took a boat out to the Puente de la Amsted bridge for some stunning photographs.
Despite the mosquitos around the area, this was a beautiful reserve with incredible guest rooms, amenities and food.
Day 5: Tamarindo Beach
You can’t go to Costa Rica and not head towards Tamarindo Beach, it’s okay to be a tourist once in a while. Though I didn’t actually swim at the beach, I decided to take the day and enjoy my incredible hotel room (and free international calling) at the Tamarindo Diria Beach Resort. If you’re looking for activities to keep you busy (instead of lazing by the waters edge), here’s some Trip Advisor tips.
Day 6: Hacienda Lodge, Guachipelin
This was by far one of the most incredible days I had in Costa Rica. We took a three hour drive toward Hacienda Lodge in Guachipelin for some horse riding, hot springs, mud baths, and waterfalls. With our wet bathing suits and day packs, we boarded our 10 person aircraft at the Liberia Airport back to San Jose. I had no idea the size of the airplane was going to be this small, and though a few of the people on board were flying simply to get from point A to B, this was absolutely breathtaking experience for me.
Day 7: Departure from San Jose
If you missed anything in San Jose when you arrived, use some of this day to sight see. My flight didn’t depart until later in the afternoon so I had some time to relax at the Studio Hotel before headed onward to Germany.
Well, that’s all for now folks, but I know that when I returned home I received many questions and tips on where to go and what to do. If you have anything in mind that you would like me to write about, send me a message or comment below!
- Central America
- Cinco Ceibas
- Costa Rica
- Costa Rica Tourism
- Eco Reserve
- Game Reserve
- Hacienda Lodge
- Hotel Grano de Oro
- La Fortuna
- Rancho Humo
- San Jose
- Selva Verde Lodge
- Sustainable Travel
- Tabacon Grand Spa
- Tamarindo Beach
- Visit Costa Rica