Arrival day in San Jose. Your hotel (Mariott Costa Rica San Jose) is included and you can take a taxi from the airport- it is only 3 miles away.
Voted by Conde Nast as one of the best hotels in Central America and Mexico, the Marriott Hotel is a beautiful colonial hacienda set on a 30 acre coffee plantation.
Day 2 + 3:
Fortuna – You will meet with your driver after breakfast (9:00 am) in the lobby of the Mariott Hotel. Your trip begins with a shuttle to the village of Agua Zarcas, where you will begin cycling. Lunch is at a typical local restaurant, and afterwards, you continue to La Fortuna and your hotel. If time allows, stop to hike into the 75m waterfall near town, or head straight to the hotel to enjoy the heated swimming pool before dinner. Next day, you ’ll take a boat cruise to Rio Chiquito (included) and cycle a lake-side route around Lake Arenal, finishing the day with a visit to hot springs at Tabacon Resort. Activities D2: cycling- 40 km; D3: cycling- 40 or 68 km
DAY 4+5: Los Angeles Cloud Forest - From La Fortuna, you ’ll ride to Bajo Rodrigues along roads dotted with fruit stands of enticing watermelon, mango, papaya and strawberries. After lunch and a swim, you’ll shuttle to our luxurious hotel, the Villa Banca, a hacienda style lodge with en-suite casitas and fine restaurant. Next day’s ride is on quiet rolling roads, finishing in the village of Palmares. In the afternoon, you will enjoy a zip line activity (included)in the Cloud Forest where you’ll have the chance to encounter howler monkeys and birds. Activities: D4: cycling- 40 km; D5; cycling; 30 km.
DAY 6+7: Cristal Ballena- you start the day with a transfer to the coast and start cycling along a road that not long ago was dirt but now is superb pavement with a good cycling shoulder. After stopping for lunch in Dominical, you will continue south to Ballena Park, named after whales that are often found here. You will stay at Cristal Ballena which has outstanding views, and a very large infinity swimming pool. Next day, on what will be a favourite cycling route, you ride a quiet road through traditional villages to Sierpe. Here you board a boat for a cruise down the Sierpe River through mangroves that are home to an incredible assortment of animals and birds. (included) A local naturalist will explain about the biodiversity and flora and fauna here. Late afternoon, you will return to the hotel for swim and then for a final night treat at Exotica in Ojochal, one of the top restaurants along the coast.
DAY 8: For those departing, we recommend an early morning visit to the beach at Ballena National Park and then a transfer to the Quepos airport by 10:45 flight (flight cost is $44 and takes 32 min).
Extension Manuel Antonio: For those wishing to extend their vacation to Manuel Antonio Park, we offer a two day extension, staying at the wonderful Si Como No Hotel with breakfast daily; we will transfer you from Cristal Ballena, arriving in time for a walking tour with our expert naturalist guide. Spend the afternoon at pristine Playa Manuel Antonio. Next morning you will be provided options for kayaking, horseback riding, zip line tours or rafting (included).
Departure from Manuel Antonio: We’ll time the shuttle to Quepos on day 3 to co-ordinate with your on-ward travel plans (flight cost Quepos-San Jose is $44 and takes 32 min).
Cost of extension is US$595pp (single supplement is US$245). Includes transfers, hotel for two nights, park entry and naturalist guide, additional tour (choice of kayaking, horseback riding, zip line tour or rafting, when available).
Rough Guide describes Si Como No as follows: “Enjoy beautiful views of the Pacific and Punta Catedral from this award-winning architectural complex set high on a hill. The hotel has solar-heated hot water, a Jacuzzi, two pools, swim-up bar, waterslide, and a small cinema with nightly screenings free to guests.”
Extension Santa Teresa: Wishing to extend your vacation time and visit the Nicoya Peninsula? Santa Teresa offers the newest hip destination in Costa Rica. Extension includes two nights at a charming casual resort with the prime frontage on the best stretch of beach in Santa Teresa, swimming pool, yoga studio and Serenity Spa. We’ve included yoga sessions each day and surf board rentals with optional instruction from a gal, originally from France living here who will have you up on your board your first day!
Cost is US$595 (single supplement is US$245). Includes transfer from Manuel Antonio including speed boat crossing to Montezuma and taxi transfer to resort. Departure from Santa Teresa: For transfer to San Jose airport your options are coach (6 hrs; $12) or flight from Tambor (25 min; $83).
Luxe Option-Santa Teresa: In Santa Teresa, we also offer a luxe option for your hotel stay, at the outstanding boutique hotel, Flor Blanca Resort. Cost is US$995 pp (single supplement is US$450) and also includes transfers from Manuel Antonio, yoga, surf board rentals and instruction. Meals other than breakfast are additional for extensions; we provide detailed travelogue with suggestions and additional activity listings.