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Costa Rica - The Garden of America

6.550,00

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An exciting journey, for those who want to treat themselves to a piece of paradise, along an itinerary that touches on the country's most significant places and the wonders of its exuberant nature.

  • Destination: Costa Rica
  • Rate Description: Rate per person
  • Number of days: 10 nights -12 days
  • Departure month: August 2024
  • Departure date: 11/08/2024
  • Date of arrival: 21/08/2024
Category:

Costa Rica is an unusual country: about a quarter of its territory is protected by National Parks and protected areas, making it one of the richest and most fascinating reserves of flora and fauna on the planet. Covered by a lush tropical forest - where the largest variety of orchids known to date thrives and populated by more than 850 species of birds and 250 mammals - this is a true paradise on earth sandwiched between two different oceans, the Pacific and the Atlantic. Here, the defence of the ecosystem has risen to a national value. In addition, in this small Central American nation, one breathes an atmosphere of pleasant relaxation and tranquillity, as Costa Rica has never been touched by the region's scorching political climate; it is no coincidence that many have described it as 'a fragment of Europe that has ended up between the Americas'. In this oasis of peace, adventure seekers can discover unspoilt lagoons, wander deep into the jungle or hike along the slopes of a still active volcano, while the beautiful beaches invite you to relax under the sun. Whether exploring the rainforest, sailing just off the coast or visiting the capital San José, Costa Rica always lives up to its name: a land of some of the greenest, safest and most relaxing destinations in Central America. And not only that.

 

Day by day

DAY 1  
ITALY - SAN JOSÉ
Departure with flight to San José, via Madrid. Arrival in the capital of Costa Rica, transfer and accommodation in a hotel. Overnight stay.

DAY 2  
SAN JOSE: HIKE TO THE DOKA COFFEE PLANTATION - POAS VOLCANO AND LA PAZ WATERFALL GARDEN
Breakfast and departure on the Pan-American Highway to the city of Alajuela. Along the way you will see the Farmer's Monument, Juan Santamaría (national hero) and the Mangos Park. During the ascent to the Poas area, a stop will be made at the Doka plantation to receive an explanation about Costa Rica's golden grain: coffee. You will learn about the various coffee processes, from planting to harvesting, from storage to roasting, packaging and distribution. Not all these processes, however, take place all year round. The journey will continue through cultivations of ornamental plants, flowers and strawberries. You will begin to notice a change in temperature and surrounding vegetation, i.e. the transition to the famous and exuberant 'cloud forest'. After a short walk to the main crater of the volcano, you will be able to admire the active sulphurous fumaroles surrounding it. We continue in the direction of the Caribbean side, towards the La Paz Gardens and Waterfalls, a totally natural park where we can admire the famous waterfalls. In the same park, we will also be able to admire one of the largest "mariposari" (butterfly enclosure) in the world, the hummingbird garden, the serpentarium, the ranarium and a wonderful collection of orchids. At the end of the visits, we return to San José. Half board including lunch.

DAY 3
SAN JOSE - TORTUGUERO PARK
Early in the morning we set off for the Tortuguero National Park, which overlooks the northern Caribbean coast and includes dozens of kilometres of magnificent beaches as well as 26,000 hectares of rainforest, intersected by a maze of waterways. Arriving in the village of Guapiles, we reach the pier, where we embark on a two-hour boat trip along the park's canals, surrounded by the dense vegetation of the forest that rises along the banks with its exuberant mass of trunks, branches and leaves shaken here and there by the flights of herons and toucans, or the acrobatics of spider monkeys. At the end of the excursion, accommodation in the lodge and, in the afternoon, a visit to the small village of Tortuguero, located right on the coast. Full board.

DAY 4  
TORTUGUERO NATIONAL PARK
Criss-crossed by a system of navigable canals that leads into the tangle of the forest, the Tortuguero is, with its 5000 millimetres of annual rainfall, one of the wettest areas in Central America. Here one can admire the bosque lluvioso, the tropical evergreen forest, in all its beauty. More than 400 tree species and 2,200 plant species thrive in the park, including magnificent orchids. The fauna is characterised by numerous species of snakes, iguanas and land tortoises, the presence of the jaguar, the caiman and various species of monkeys, as well as flamboyant tropical butterflies; the green sea turtle (Chelonia mydas) also nests here, laying its eggs along the 35 kilometres of beach during the period from July to September. The whole day is dedicated to visiting Tortuguero, with excursions and boat rides along the canals in order to observe the flora and fauna of this enchanted place under the best conditions. Full board.

DAY 5            
TORTUGUERO PARK - FORTUNE AND THE ARENAL VOLCANO
After travelling along the canals to the Guapiles jetty, we leave for the town of La Fortuna, located at the foot of the Arenal volcano, which at 1633 metres is the fourth highest in Costa Rica. With its almost perfectly conical outline, this giant has been in activity since 1968. At times, one can witness the exciting spectacle of the reddish lava flows down its flanks and the incandescent rocks hurled into the sky, while at other times the volcano is very quiet and merely emits glows in the night sky. In any case, Arenal is surrounded by a no-go zone for obvious security reasons. Arrival and accommodation in the hotel. We spend the afternoon in the Rio Tabacón Thermal Park, which is famous for its hot springs bubbling up in the depths of the forest, in a breathtakingly scenic setting; here we can immerse ourselves in the thermal pools and waterfalls, from where we can enjoy beautiful views of the volcano's perfect cone. Half board including lunch.

DAY 6  
LA FORTUNA - HIKE ON THE RIO PEÑAS BLANCAS
In the morning, we enjoy the thrill of a rubber dinghy ride on the waters of the Rio Peñas Blancas, which flows placidly through the tropical rainforest: an unusual way to admire the biodiversity of the surrounding natural habitat, rich in flora and fauna, amidst flights of colourful birds and a myriad of animal sounds and calls. In the afternoon, visit the hot springs of The Springs Resort & Spa. where you can soak in the various thermal water pools with wonderful views of the Arenal Volcano. Dinner at the hot springs and return to the hotel. Half board including dinner.

DAY 7  
ARENAL VOLCANO - PLAYA DOMINICAL
Departure for Playa Dominical, an important ecotourism area in Costa Rica. Stop, en route, at some beautiful country villages. Arrival and accommodation in a hotel. Afternoon at leisure. Breakfast and overnight stay.

8TH DAY            
EXCURSION TO CORCOVADO PARK
A day dedicated to visits and excursions in the Corcovado National Park, undoubtedly the most beautiful and exciting in the country. In this rich and complex habitat (the last remaining vast stretch of humid tropical forest on the Pacific coast of Central America), countless species of moss-covered trees and lianas thrive, while the intricate undergrowth is home to an infinite number of epiphytic plants, giant tree ferns, bamboos up to five metres high and an incredible variety of orchids. Corcovado is considered perhaps the richest place on the planet biologically because of its incredible biodiversity, which has been maintained thanks to the park's remote location and the very small human presence. It is home to numerous animal species, some of them endangered, including jaguars, giant sloths, anteaters, toucans and the largest colony of Ara Macao parrots in Central America. Full board with packed lunch.

DAY 9  
EXCURSION TO CAÑO ISLAND
A day dedicated to an excursion to Caño Island, which preserves the remains of a pre-Columbian necropolis. The rocky and coral seabed is one of the main attractions of this nature reserve, along with the evergreen forest. With a bit of luck we might even spot whales and dolphins during the boat trip. In the afternoon we have time at leisure for bathing activities. Full board with packed lunch.

10TH DAY
PLAYA DOMINICAL - SAN JOSÉ
We depart for San José. Arrival, transfer and accommodation in the hotel. Time at leisure to visit the city, the country's main economic and commercial centre; we suggest a visit to the interesting National Museum, rich in historical artefacts. The city is full of beautiful parks and there is a serene and cosmopolitan atmosphere everywhere. Breakfast and overnight stay

11TH DAY
SAN JOSÉ - ITALY
Breakfast. Transfer to the airport and departure with the flight back to Italy, via Madrid.

DAY 12
ITALY
Arrival in Italy in the afternoon.

 

THE FEE INCLUDES

● International air travel with scheduled Iberia flights to/from Milan (special group booking class, 23 kg baggage allowance) ● Private transfers except during the stay in Tortuguero where transfers will be shared with other participants, including boats, where indicated in the programme ● Accommodation in the hotels indicated in the "Hotels" section at the start of the tour ● Meals detailed in the programme ● Visits and excursions as per the programme Visits and excursions on a group basis during the stay in Tortuguero ● Entrance fees during guided tours ● Assistance from qualified local staff and tour leader from Italy ● Medical Expense Insurance, Covid-19, Travel Assistance, Baggage

THE FEE DOES NOT INCLUDE

● Airport and security taxes (approx. Euro 450) and airport taxes payable only locally ● Possible introduction of new government taxes or increases thereof and increases in the cost of entrance fees to various sites of tourist interest, parks or nature reserves of which we are not aware at the time of drawing up the quotas ● Drinks, tips and anything else not expressly indicated - Cancellation insurance

Please note: with regard to insurance cover for possible trip cancellation, our offices will provide you with all the necessary assistance

PLEASE NOTE: TRANSFERS AND VISITS TO THE TORTUGUERO PARK ARE MADE ABOARD MOTOR BOATS AND SHARED VEHICLES WITH OTHER PARTICIPANTS

The proposed itinerary is carried out with the SIB formula (shared services with other participants, even of different nationalities), or with private services. During the rainy season or during downpours, visits to the parks, which in Costa Rica are always done on foot and on trails, may become uncomfortable due to the muddy terrain. The programme may be subject to changes in the sequence of stages in relation to the day of arrival in Costa Rica, in order to allow visits to national parks that are closed to the public on Mondays.

YOUR HOTELS
San José: Park Inn By Radisson 4*
Tortuguero Park: Pachira Lodge
Arenal: Hotel Arenal Paraiso 4*
Playa Dominical: 4* Hotel Cristal Ballena & Spa

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