Hi guys! We are two girls travelling Costa Rica for three weeks in January. I just finished reading your book “Top ten Costa Rica itineraries” which helped us a lot choosing which places to visit! We are almost sure these are the places we want to go to: La Fortuna, Monteverde (if we have enough time), Manuel Antonio, Santa Teresa, Tamarindo, Puerto Viejo and Bocas del Toro. We are focusing on enjoying the beautiful beaches, some nightlife and outdoor activities.
My main concern now is how to organize the itinerary considering that we might need to use the bus service as much as possible. We are on a tight budget, so we’d like to save as much as we can on transportation so that we can spend that money on activities and tours.
What would you suggest?
Thanks a lot for your help!
That’s awesome that you will have 3 weeks to explore. Assuming you are flying into San Jose, a loop that might make sense is to go to Manuel Antonio first, then go up to the Nicoya Peninsula (Mal Pais/Santa Teresa) using the Puntarenas Ferry. From there, visit Tamarindo to the north. After Tamarindo you could go through Monteverde to get to La Fortuna (there is a convenient van-boat-van shuttle option between those two). After La Fortuna, make your way to Puerto Viejo. This is a long trek so you might want to connect here via a shuttle. They have some fun ones that include an activity like white-water rafting along the way. Then from Puerto Viejo, jump down to the Bocas. I’d recommend flying back to San Jose from there since it can be pretty affordable with the amount of time it saves you. Hope that helps you. If you need some help with the shuttle connections, let us know!