Panama and Costa Rica ( 14 days – 13 nights )

Panama and Costa Rica highlights: tour of Panama City, Panama canal transit, visit an indigenous tribe, and a couple days in the Caribbean Coast in Panama; in Costa Rica, stay at la Fortuna and its majestic Arenal volcanoe and extensive wildlife, experience the rainforest in Monteverde and end your trip at the beautiful beaches of Manuel Antonio.

day_1Day 1: Panama City Airport – Transfer to hotel

Arrival in Panama City Airport on April 7th. On arrival meet and greet with your local agent and then transfer to your hotel. Accommodation: Hotel Bristol Panama, 1 Deluxe Double room, breakfast and taxes included.

day_2Day 2: Panama City – Partial Panama Transit Canal – Panama City

Breakfast and transfer from your hotel to Flamenco Resort and Marina. Take a half day tour of the partial transit of the Panama canal. The tour starts with a motor coach ride for 45 minutes to the town of Gamboa where the Panama Canal Dredging Division is located. Once in Gamboa, you will aboard the cruise ship to start the water portion of the tour. You will enter the canal at the north end of the Gaillard Cut, this is one of the main points of interest for visitors because it was carved through the Continental Divide and this section of the Canal is full of history and geological value. Your boat will travel the Cut on the way to Pedro Miguel Locks and appreciate the continuous maintenance that this area requires  and also observe the work in process for the Panama Canal expansion project. Then continue to visit other locks and the Miraflores Lake. Lunch included. After the tour return to the Marina and transfer back to your city hotel. Accommodation: Hotel Bristol Panama, 1 Deluxe Double room, breakfast and taxes included.

day_3Day 3: Panama City – Visit to the Emberá Quera Indians – Panama City

Today you will head up north in direction Colon, towards Buena Vista. There you will board a small dugout (a canoe made from a hollowed tree trunk), which will carry you up the Gatun River to discover a large, fascinating and dense jungle that will accompany you until you arrive at the Emberá Quera, an indigenous community based on the banks of Gatun Lake, near the Panama Canal. The tribe still lives in harmony with Mother Nature. The villages chief will give you a brief explication on the history of the tribe, its traditions, cultures, believes and handicrafts. Then, a traditional lunch of fish and plantains prepared by the Embera women will be served to you. In the afternoon you will experience a traditional Emberá dance that will transport you back in time and also have the chance to shop for colorful handicrafts. You can also get a temporary Emberá tattoo painted on your arm or leg, using an ink made from a local fruit. Lunch included. Return to Panama City after the tour. Accommodation: Hotel Bristol Panama, 1 Deluxe Double room, breakfast and taxes included.

day_4Day 4: Panama City – Gatun Locks & Panama Canal Expansion & San Lorenzo Fort – Portobelo

In the morning, your guide will pick you up at the hotel to take you to the impressive Gatun Locks, the first set of locks situated on the Atlantic side of the Panama Canal. Here you will able to admire a series of three lock chambers where the huge container vessels are lifted or lowered a total of 26 meters. Each lock is 33.5 meters wide and 306 meters long and takes eight to 15 minutes to fill with water. The tour will continue to discover the next 100 years of the Panama Canal at the Expansion Observation Cente. Here you will witness history in the making while observing the construction of the new locks of the Panama Canal, one of the most important infrastructure projects of the early 21st century. Continue to the San Lorenzo Fort, located at the entrance of the Chagres River close to Colon. It was through this river where the notorious pirate Henry Morgan arrived to the Old Panama, to burn and loot the city. To get to San Lorenzo, it is necessary to cross the Gatun Locks and get into Sherman Fort, a former military base, surrounded by a rich jungle with a wide diversity of species. It is a special place for bird watching. To complete the tour, a delicious lunch will be served at Los Lagartos restaurant at the Gamboa Rainforest Resort, overlooking the Chagres River. After the tour continue to the historical town of Portobelo. After checking-in on your hotel have some time at leisure. Accommodation: Hotel El Otro Lado Luxury Accomodation 4*, Forest & Sea House, breakfast and taxes included.

days_5_&_6Days 5 & 6: Free days in Portobelo

Free days in town. Optional activities (not included) such as snorkeling, swimming in paradisiacal beaches are available. Accommodation at Hotel El Otro Lado Luxury Accomodation 4*, Forest & Sea House, breakfast and taxes included.

day_7Day 7: Portobelo – Panama City Airport – Juan Santamaria Airport, San Jose/Costa Rica – Transfer to hotel

Free morning to enjoy the beach. At midday transfer back to Panama City and flight (on your own) to San Jose, Costa Rica. On arrival transfer to your hotel. Accommodation: Hotel Grano de Oro 4*, 1 Superior Double room breakfast and taxes included.

day_8Day 8: San Jose – Doka – La Paz Waterfall – La Fortuna

Early pick up at your hotel and transfer to La Fortuna. On route, enjoy an interesting tour at the famous Doka coffee plantation where you will learn about the history and importance of coffee in Costa Rican culture. Then head to the Poas Volcano where you will get to see gorgeous Costa Rican views and the massive crater filled with a bright blue sulfurous lake. Finish the day off by hiking to the breathtaking La Paz waterfall where lots of birds, butterflies, monkeys, and sloths have been spotted. Then enjoy a delicious traditional Costa Rican lunch before being transported to your new vacation destination just in time for sunset. Shared tour and transportation! Accommodation: Hotel Arenal Kioro 4*, 1 Suite breakfast and taxes included.

day_9Day 9: Arenal – Cultour – Arenal

After breakfast take part of a shred tour to learn about the relationship and interaction of the inhabitants with the Arenal Volcano, its influence on land prices, the traditional way of living, agriculture, cattle breeding and its history, the living fences, and much more.  Once at La Casona, we will make a visit to the Trapiche, then a trip on a tractor to one of towns, here, participants can buy soft drinks or snacks at the rural grocery store and interact with the owner and local clients.  At a local Primary School, the children will present us a selection of local folk dances and information about the educational system of Costa Rica. Lunch included. Shared tour and transportation! Accommodation: Hotel Arenal Kioro 4*, 1 Suite breakfast and taxes included.

day_10Day 10: Arenal – Van/Boat/Van – Monteverde

This is the most adventures way to travel from Arenal to Monteverde! The transportation starts from Arenal in the morning, you will be taken to the Lake Arenal where you will enjoy a 45-30 minutes boat journey to the opposite side of the lake. You will enjoy an impressive 1.5 hour journey up the mountainside on a steep road offering stunning views of the lush, green valley until arriving in Monteverde. You will be then transferred directly to your hotel. Shared Transportation! Accommodation: Hotel Belmar 3*, 1 single Peninsula Superior room, breakfast and taxes included.

day_11Day 11: Monteverde – Sky Walk & Sky Tram – Monteverde

You will be picked up at your hotel to begin today’s adventure! You will be driven to a natural park in Monteverde. Start with the Sky Walk; this is a guided tour, which combines trails and suspension bridges with lengths of even 984 feet and heights above the canopy of Monteverde cloud forest. The tour gives you the opportunity to enjoy the flora and fauna of the area, always joined by one of our specialized guides while reuniting all the conditions of security and confidence. End up with the Sky Tram: These gondolas rise smoothly through the rain forest, offering up endless views of the Gulf of Nicoya and the cloud forest during their mountainous ascent. On tour you will be attended by a bilingual guide who will point out different characteristics of the flora and fauna and other interesting facts. The Sky Tram travel up the mountains to arrive in a wide observation platform on the highest point of the reserve, where you can enjoy the views. Shared Transportation! Accommodation: Hotel Belmar 3*, 1 single Peninsula Superior room, breakfast and taxes included.

day_12Day 12: Monteverde – Manuel Antonio

Pick up at your hotel after breakfast and shared transfer to Manuel Antonio National Park. This national park has a series of small beaches and bays surrounded by luscious rainforest. Arrival and check-in at your hotel. The rest fo the dsat is at leisure. Accommodation: Hotel La Mariposa 3*sup, 1 single room with ocean view, breakfast and taxes included.

day_13Day 13: Manuel Antonio

Free day at leisure to enjoy the amenities of your hotel and/or at the stunning beaches of the National Park. Accommodation at Hotel La Mariposa 3*sup, 1 single room with ocean view, breakfast and taxes included.

day_14Day 14: Manuel Antonio – San Jose Airport

Today you will be transferred to the airport in San Jose and take your flight (on your own) back to your country.

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Sample Itineraries

Sample Itineraries