Costa Rica + Nicaragua Family Adventure (12 days – 11 nights)
This family trip leads you from Costa Rica to Nicaragua, and if full of exciting, family friendly activities: active volcanoes. Costa Rica: majestic waterfalls, horseback in the bushes, rain forest adventure including zip lining, see gigantic crocodiles and snakes; Nicaragua: visit local farms and share the farmers way of life for a day with traditional lunch at the farm, spend a day in Lake Nicaragua with boating or kayaking, at the end splurge for a copule day ta the beach in the Pacific.
On your arrival at the International Airport in San Jose, our driver will be waiting for you to transfer directly to your hotel. After settling in, the rest of the day is free for you to relax at your hotel or visit the city on your own. Overnight at Hotel of your choice (Hotel Bougainvillea / Hotel Grano de Oro).
Breakfast and transfer north taking a tour around the Central Valley and then reach the beautiful area of Arenal in La Fortuna. As you ascend the terrain and near the Poás Volcano we will see coffee plantations. Reach the Poás Volcano where we will not only admire the impressive main crater with its sulfur fumaroles, but also learn about the different ecosystems in this unique and protected national park. Later continue to La Paz Waterfall Gardens, probably Costa Rica’s most beautiful waterfalls. Walk through a trail, leading to a spectacular waterfall in the middle of the rainforest. Inside the park we will also visit the hummingbird gallery, the bird house, the butterfly garden and the frog’s exhibit. In the late afternoon arrive at your hotel offering great views to the iconic Arenal volcano. Overnight at Hotel of your choice (Hotel Lomas del Volcan / Hotel Arenal Springs).
Breakfast at the hotel. Today enjoy a gentle horseback riding tour in the surroundings of Arenal volcano. This is a great tour for horse and nature lovers who want to see the real Costa Rican rainforest! As you ride your horse at the base of the Arenal Volcano, you will ride through various types of terrain including small rivers and unforgettable scenery and even reach a look-out point which is as close as you can get to the Arenal volcano. In the afternoon, visit the serpentarium, a very interesting reptile’s refuge where you will observe all varieties of snakes, frogs, tarantulas, turtles, fishes (tilapias), a caiman and more. Overnight at Hotel of your choice (Hotel Lomas del Volcan / Hotel Arenal Springs).
Today leave Arenal and continue to Monteverde, in a very original way, doing a kind of tour at the same time, and save driving time. You will be transferred by van down to Lake Arenal, then take a boat to cross Lake Arenal with sightseeing/animals on the way until you reach the dam and continue in a van to Monteverde. It is frequent to see coatis (“pizotes”) coming out of the jungle on the way between la Fortuna and Lake Arenal. A scenery journey will lead you to the mountains of the Monteverde Cloud Forest zone. As optional (not included) take part of El Trapiche tour, a tour that will allow you to learn a bit of Costa Rican culture. This tour is much more than a Trapiche (sugar cane mill) tour – you will get to see and learn about coffee, chocolate, and other important Costa Rican crops that this family has on their farm. Arrive and check-in at the hotel of your choice. (Hotel Fonda Vela / Hotel El Establo Mountain).
You won’t want to miss seeing Monteverde’s Cloud Forest from high above the forest floor! With the Sky Adventure combo, you will do three different activities in one solo day: Start your day with the Sky Tram, get lifted high onto a mountain by an open-air gondola to an observation platform. The breathtaking view will get wider and more breathtaking as you get higher up onto the mountain. Then, you will begin your adrenaline-pumping journey “zipping” above the cloud forest canopy flying like a bird from tree-to-tree on the Sky Trek. End your adventure with a walk above the trees on the hanging bridges on the Sky walk. Night at the hotel of your choice. (Hotel Fonda Vela / Hotel El Establo Mountain).
Breakfast and transfer back to the Central Valley to San Jose. On the way stop at the Tarcoles River and take a look at the huge, 20-ft American crocodiles that inhabit the Carara Biological Reserve area of the Tarcioles River. As optional (not included) you can also take a boat trip to expand the visit and see a multitude of wildlife including the large crocodiles, “Jesus Christ Lizards”, iguanas, Scarlet Macaw and over fifty other species of birds.Arrive and check-in at the hotel of your choice. (Hotel Holiday Inn Express Airport / Hotel Hampton Suites & Inn by Hilton).
Early morning transfer to the Airport in San Jose for your flight to Managua (Flights re only available on Monday, Wednesday and Friday!). Upon arrival you will be greeted by your guide and driver who will take you to visit Montibelli Wildlife Reserve, a private reserve covered with tropical dry forest, and home to many different types of animals. Visit “Finca El Jicaro”, the locals in this property are dedicated to harvest rice, avocado and pineapples, as well as raise of cattle. You will observe how “cuajadas” a variety of local cheese and tortillas are made, then visit “Finca El Eden” and see all the fruits that are produced here such as lemons, oranges, coconuts among others. Lunch “campestre” style will be enjoyed in the property. On the way to Granada visit the active Masaya volcano, one of Nicaragua’s most interesting and beautiful natural phenomena with scenic roads and trails and the five formidable craters; one of them currently displays gaseous activity and incandescent lava in its interior, only a short distance is the fine Handicraft Market, where you can admire and purchase beautiful souvenirs of Nicaragua. Arrive and check-in at the hotel of your choice. (Hotel Con Corazon / Hotel Plaza Colon).
After breakfast you will be transferred to small port in Lake Nicaragua to enjoy a full day in a private Island. You can reach a beautiful private Isleta by boat or by kayak. See the most beautiful islands in Lake Nicaragua and their rich flora and fauna, discover some of the 356 islands “Isletas”, a must see! Covered with lush, tropical vegetation, some of them are inhabited by natives, others have vacation houses built on them, and others are still deserted. Enjoy lunch there and have time at leisure before being transferred back in the late afternoon. Night at the hotel of your choice. (Hotel Con Corazon / Hotel Plaza Colon).
Breakfast and transfer to the Pacific Ocean for some relaxing days in San Juan del Sur. This is a small and very nice typical fishermen port located at the south west, placed along a bay that overlooks the Pacific Ocean 90 kms west of Granada and 55 Kms from Costa Rica’s frontier. Enclosed by prehistoric volcanic hills, San Juan del Sur is characterized by a 2 Kms wide sandy beach, with very good climate during the whole year. It permits to practice surf, and deep sea fishing and bathing. Arrive and check-in at Pelican Eyes Resort & Spa, overlooking the bay of San Juan del Sur.
Days at leisure in this beautiful and colourful beach town; time to have fun at a relaxing beach! Optional activities can be organized, such as: Surf rental or surf lessons, turtles watching, sailing trip, fishing, etc. Night at Pelican Eyes Resort & Spa
Morning transfer from the Pacific Ocean to Managua, capital city of the country. On the way stop to visit the typical and small “Pueblos Blancos” (White Villages). Visit Catarina, a small and characteristic village of Nicaragua where people work seedling nurseries, make handcraft and raise horses. From a viewpoint you can have a magnificent view of the Apoyo lagoon, Mombacho volcano, Granada and Lake Nicaragua., afterward go to San Juan de Oriente, famous for its ceramic arts. Visit a workshop where all items are handmade and the “know how” is transmitted from fathers to sons; Lunch included in a beautiful typical restaurant. Arrive in Managua and check-in at the hotel of your choice. (Hotel Camino Real / Hotel Intercontinental Metrocentro).
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