Discover Costa Rica (trip)

Discover Costa Rica

  • San Jose Airport, San Jose, Costa Rica
  • Culture & Nature
“From the moment we got off our plane in San Jose, every single thing went so smoothly! Every detail was… ”
Pacuare Whitewater
, Turrialba Valley
, Savegre Mtn. Reserve
, Coastal Retreat, Costa Rica, Central America

from $1,925* per person9 DaysYear-round
Boutique accommodations Exertion level: 4
Operator: Adventure Life Journeys 12 people max
We start our Costa Rica adventure rafting on the wild waters of the Pacuare River. Next, explore the country's tropical plantations, as we take a fun bike tour through the celebrated agricultural research center, CATIE. Learn about local vegetation and sample exotic fruits - try the coffee beans, they're sweeter than you think! Follow that with a hike into the cloud forest of the Savegre Reserve. And finally, we'll finish the trip at a remote jungle lodge along the Golfo Dulce to the Pacific Ocean!

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Locations visited/nearby

Pacuare Whitewater , Turrialba Valley , Savegre Mtn. Reserve , Coastal Retreat, Costa Rica, Central America

2 testimonials about this trip

  1. Reviewer: D. Meola located in Olivebridge, NY Feb, 2005
    From the moment we got off our plane in San Jose, every single thing went so smoothly! Every detail was taken care of and all we had to do was relax and have fun! Everyone we met was envious of how smooth things were going for us. Every guide we had was not only super friendly, but also very knowledgeable and went way out of their way to make sure that every detail was taken care of. We will be going back for sure!
  2. Reviewer: K. Fedack located in Evergreen, CO Jul, 2005
    This tour was a well-planned mix of guided activities and independent time. The first part of the trip was more action packed, allowing the end of the trip to be spent relaxing at the beach. The mix of mountains and coastal areas allowed us to experience the diverse ecological zones of Costa Rica. The trip was everything we expected. The transportation was always on time and all the guides were superb - friendly and willing to help. Adventure Life was very helpful in the pre-trip planning and the tour itself went very smoothly.

1 testimonial about the provider, Adventure Life Journeys:

  • Reviewer: S. Cook located in Santa Barbara, CA USA

    Adventure Life is one of the few organizations in the world that get what matters most - customers. Your staff and services were excellent and of quality. It is clear that everyone at Adventure Life loves what they do and do what they love.

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Special information

  • This is a custom departure, meaning this trip is offered on dates that you arrange privately with the provider. Additionally, you need to form your own private group for this trip. The itinerary and price here is just a sample. Contact the provider for detailed pricing, minimum group size, and scheduling information. For most providers, the larger the group you are traveling with, the lower the per-person cost will be.
  • May accommodate certain types of disabilities. Contact the operator for more information.


Day 1 Arrive San Jose lodge


Day 2 Pacuare River Rafting (B,L,D) lodge

You will splash right into your Costa Rica travel adventures with Class III-IV whitewater rafting down the Pacuare River. After an early breakfast and briefing on safety measures, an incredible rafting journey on this renowned river begins. As famous for its spirited waters as it is for its beauty, the Pacuare River doesn't disappoint as you plunge through mountain gorges, run long stretches of powerful rapids and weave your way through a rainforest alive with the sounds of howler monkeys, toucans, sloths and ocelots. That evening you'll travel to the Turrialba Valley and spend the night at the relaxing Guayabo Lodge. The lodge offers wonderful views of the Turrialba Volcano and the rest of the valley. One of the most important regions in Costa Rica, the valley supplies much of the country's drinking water and is home to a spectacular variety of animals, including over 550 different species of exotic birds. Don't forget your binoculars! A quick briefing by a biking outfitter helps prepare us for our cycling adventure in the morning.

Day 3 Biking tour of CATIE (B,L,D) lodge

This morning, slow things down a bit with a bike tour through Costa Rica's world-renowned agricultural research center, CATIE. The comfortable four-hour ride develops over easy gravel paths, country roads and farm trails. Learn about planting techniques unique to the region and get to know the texture, smells, and tastes of the local agriculture. Sample shade-grown coffee, cocoa, bananas, macadamia, mango, avocado and sugarcane from the field. As you coast along, keep an eye out for the wildlife that - like the intuitive traveler - is attracted to the plantation's diverse fruits and flowers. The biking trip finishes with a visit to the Tropical Botanical Garden, which offers a collection of some of the world's most important tropical plant species. The afternoon is yours to unwind or take in any of the extra activities available in the area including horseback riding, a visit to the Turrialba Volcano or the Guayabo Archaeological Site (click here for more information).

Day 4 Turrialba to Savegre (B,D) lodge

Relax this morning and enjoy the wonderful Turrialba climate. For the energetic, an optional excursion of hiking or horseback riding can be arranged the night before. After lunch, you'll say good-bye to the valley and head south toward San Gerard de Dota. Your drive takes you into paramo at Cerro de la Muerte - paramo is a high altitude grassland ecosystem. Near the highest point of the highway, you'll descend into lush cloudforest following the Savegre River to one of Costa Rica's best examples of sustainable tourism. The Savegre Mountain Lodge is owned and run by the Chacon family - pioneers in ecotourism. Settle in this afternoon and enjoy your Costa Rica vacation in the pure mountain air, savoring the hospitality of this family-run lodge.

Day 5 Hike at Savegre Reserve (B,L,D) lodge

Made of up 400 hectares of forest, 80% of which are virgin, the Savegre Reserve is used as a living research laboratory by institutions from around the world. Today you will have the opportunity to explore this remarkable region, hiking the reserve's incredible landscape while making your way through the famous oak forest and epiphyte vegetation. Here, you're more likely than any other place in Costa Rica to spot the famed Resplendent Quetzal - its bright red and green feathers make it a favorite of both the novice and experienced birdwatcher. You return to the lodge in time for a hearty lunch. The afternoon is yours to take an optional excursion. Zip line through the canopy. Try your luck at trout fishing. Take a horseback ride, or just take advantage of the spectacular view!

Days 6-7 On to Golfo Dulce (2B,2L,2D) lodge

This morning you will be picked up and transferred the 4 hours further south to Golfito. Here you will board a boat to take you to the small rainforest lodge along Playa Nicuesa. Playa Nicuesa Rainforest Lodge is a 165-acre private owner-operated preserve nestled within the awesome blue-green waters of the Golfo Dulce along the Pacific Coast. The lush rainforest of the 14,000 hectare Piedras Blancas National Park and unspoiled remote beaches on the Golfo Dulce are the rewards for the long trip to this remote part of the country! Your time here will be flexible to arrange activities as you like! Here you will enjoy multiple activity options in the rainforest and the ocean. Both land and water based adventures and activities are offered locally. Most may be self guided, or you may be led by in-house nature guides upon request. Included in your stay are unlimited self guided hikes on preserve, use of kayaks, windsurfers, snorkeling and fishing gear.

Day 8 Return San Jose (B) lodge

This morning you will take a boat back to Golfito for your return flight to San Jose (or extend your stay with another night along the Pacific Coast). Spend your last night here in the beautiful country!

Day 9 Return Home (B)

More information from Adventure Life Journeys: