Costa Rica: Caribbean rainforest experience

Trip ideas
Duration (in days): 9

From: San Jose

To: San Jose



Exc. International flights (per person, based on 2 sharing) 
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Visit some of the most authentic and colourful regions of Costa Rica with our 9 day Caribbean Experience! Enjoy the atmosphere of tropical rhythms and brilliant colours derived from a combination of Jamaican, Italian and Chinese migrants who’ve settled here over the years. Spot wildlife in Tortuguero National Park, raft through breath-taking canyons on the Pacuare River and relax on the gorgeous beaches of Puerto Viejo on this Costa Rican rainforest and river adventure.

This adventure takes you to the picturesque town of Tortuguero and its surrounding waterways, teeming with nature and the local wildlife. You will raft down Pacuare River, past crashing waterfalls and rushing rapids and finally relax on the Caribbean coast, with its isolated beaches and crystal clear waters, rich culture and laidback lifestyle.               

This itinerary can be tailored to suit your requirements please contact one of our consultants to start planning your dream trip.


  • Spot local wildlife as you travel through the waterways of Tortuguero National Park       
  • Spend time at the Sea Turtle conservancy           
  • Raft down the Pacuare River through the heart of Talamanca’s rainforest            
  • Relax in serene pools as you travel down the river
  • Enjoy 3 nights on the Caribbean coast
  • Visit a local village and sample traditional cuisine



Itinerary in brief:

  • 1 night San Jose               
  • 2 nights Tortuguero       
  • 2 nights Pacuare River Region
  • 3 nights Puerto Viejo     


Day 1: Arrive San Jose        

Welcome to Costa Rica! On arrival you will be greeted by a local representative and taken to your hotel by private car transfer.

The rest of the day is at leisure.

Day 2: San Jose to Tortuguero National Park

It’s an early start today as you leave San Jose for the town of Guapiles, located between the central highlands and Caribbean coast, passing through the spectacular Braulio Carrillo National Park along the way. After sampling a typical Costa Rican breakfast in a local restaurant your journey continues through banana fields and cassava plantations to the canals. A 2 hour boat ride will take you to the lodge, your home for the next 2 nights.

A refreshing cocktail and delicious lunch await you on arrival! Afterwards you will take a guided tour through the picturesque town of Tortuguero and finally to the Sea Turtle Information Centre. Tortuguero hosts the largest green turtle rookery in the western hemisphere and is an important nesting location for other species of turtles. Here you can learn more about these captivating sea creatures.

Dinner tonight is included at the lodge.

Day 3: Tortuguero National Park 

Tortuguero is home to a network of lakes, rivers and canals that are used for transportation but they are also a great way to witness the local wildlife going about their daily life. You will be taken from the lodge along these networks in a small open boat ensuring you have great visibility of the abundant wildlife as you float along. With 57 species of amphibian, 300 species of bird and 60 of mammals this region boasts some incredible animals including three-toed sloths, howler monkeys and basilisk lizards as well as a variety of different types of parrots.

Lunch and dinner are included at the lodge today. After an afternoon of leisure you can join an optional night tour to observe the turtles nesting, this is only available July to September.

Day 4: Tortuguero to Pacuare River Region  

After breakfast at the lodge a shared boat transfer will take you back to the pier. From here, your trip continues by bus to a local restaurant and meeting point.

After lunch at the restaurant you’ll head towards the private rafting centre where you will meet your guide and you’ll join a group rafting excursion. The Class 3 rapids take you into Pacuare Gorge and through the heart of Talamancas primary rainforest, finishing at the lodge. The rest of the afternoon can be spent relaxing, hiking or soaking in the waterfall.

Day 5: Pacuare River 

Waking up to the sound of birdsong and the river flowing nearby provides a great start to the day, followed by a delicious breakfast at the lodge.

Today is a free day to explore the region. There are many optional excursions to choose if you wish, from guide hikes to canopy tours or even horseback riding. Alternatively simply relax at the lodge and let the sounds of the tropical rainforest whisk your cares away!

Day 6: Pacuare River Region to Puerto Viejo

Departure is by raft today! After breakfast, join your guide and head out for a day of white water rafting. This trip takes around 3 hours travelling through class 3-5 rapids observing beautiful waterfalls and relaxing in serene pools along the way.

On arrival at the Rios Tropicales Centre, you’ll be served a hearty lunch after your busy morning. A private car will then take you to onwards to Puerto Viejo on the Caribbean coast for your final 3 nights. 

Days 7 & 8: Puerto Viejo de Talamanca         

You now have 2 full days in Puerto Viejo. With its laid back attitude and Caribbean lifestyle, this is the perfect spot to relax after a busy week exploring. This vibrant seaside town enjoys beautiful isolated beaches, crystal clear waters and exotic flora and fauna.

We have also included a day visit to a local community. The indigenous territory of the Bribri is located in the tropical forest of Talamanca and is accessible by dugout canoe. Your adventure starts in Bambu where a local guide will take you on a one hour ride down the river into the Talamanca Mountains. Your guide will show you the local village before enjoying a traditional Bribri style lunch, complete with chocolate dipped bananas for dessert!    

Day 9: Puerto Viejo to San Jose

After breakfast a private car will collect you from the hotel and drive you to San Jose Airport for your departure flight.



Costa Rica enjoys their summer season from December through to April.  The obvious attraction at this time is the great weather. It is peak season however so bear this in mind as availability may be limited and prices higher. From May to November the rain picks up, roads are muddy and rains start to rise. Prices can be much lower at this time and the crowds have dispersed so it can be a great time to visit.  Note travel in some areas may slow right down or not be possible so it’s worth checking your route before booking flights.

This itinerary is purely a suggestion, and can be tailor-made to your requirements, so please contact us with your dates and requests and we’ll put together a bespoke quotation for you

What's included: 

  • Airport meet & greet
  • Accommodation throughout
  • Daily breakfast
  • Full board at Tortuguero and Pacuare river area (alcoholic beverages are not included)
  • Guided visit to Tortuguero National Park (entrance fee included)
  • Rafting on Pacuare river, class II and III
  • One day visit to the Bribri Community – Mishka Yorkín
  • All hotel taxes

Not included: 

  • Meals not specified
  • Costa Rica departure tax (US$29 per person)
  • Tips for guides
  • Optional tours
  • Personal expenses


8 nights in 3* hotel and eco-lodge style accommodation.

Accommodation in this category includes:

  • Hotel Park Inn, San Jose

  • Mawamba Lodge, Tortuguero

  • Rios Tropicales Lodge

  • Namuwoki Lodge


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