Costa Rica - Walks and Wildlife Adventure Holiday
Costa Rica, Discovery, 15 days - from £1,595 (land only) - from €1,915 (land only) - from $2,630 (land only)
Day 1: Rendezvous at group hotel. KE Land Only package services begin with the overnight stay at the group hotel.
Day 2: This morning we depart for Poas Volcano National Park, with its impressive active crater. Here we have a short walk to Laguna Botos through the cloud forest. We then drive to La Fortuna, the small town at the foot of Arenal Volcano. Dinner and overnight with a great view of the volcano.
Day 3: This morning we follow one of the many hiking trails around Arenal National Park. If weather conditions are good, we can cross Cerro Chato (1140m) with its green crater lake nestled in the forest. There is an optional visit to the thermal hot springs in the afternoon.
Day 4: Transferring northwards we drive along Arenal Lake direction Rincon de la Vieja. We stop at the Las Pumas refuge to see the rescued wild cats before continuing onto Liberia and then the dirt roads to Rincon de la Vieja dry forest amidst the beautiful savannah landscapes. This afternoon explore some of the walking trails near the lodge or take an optional canopy tour. Overnight Rincon de la Vieja.
Day 5: Today is our first full day's hike of around 6 hours. In the National Park we find tropical dry forest with enchanting waterfalls, steaming vents, hot springs and a host of wildlife. Weather permitting we hike up to Rincon de la Vieja's bubbling crater lake at 1895m. Alternatively we walk along steep trails to the waterfalls where we can swim and enjoy the prolific wildlife. Return to our lodge.
Day 6: We have another full day in Rincon de la Vieja National Park where we walk the famous Las Pailas Trail with its impressive mud spots and fumarole's spouting hot steam, along to the 'hot river' and then through the 'haunted wood' to the house of Santa Maria. Throughout our 6hrs walk, we are surrounded by forest with wildlife including monkeys, coatis, parrots and toucans. Return to lodge.
Day 7: This morning we transfer to the Central Pacific region. En route we stop at the Tarcoles bridge to see the enormous crocodiles and past Quepos we stop and continue on foot. We walk to the small community of Quebrada Arroyo, guardians of the Los Campesinos reserve in the basin of the Savegre River. Our lodge is surrounded by extraordinary forest and waterfalls, and we can swim in the natural pools.
Day 8: This morning we walk from our lodge in the Los Campesinos reserve with a local guide (approx 4hrs). We stop at the lookout point with great views of the Pacific ocean and the beaches of Manuel Antonio before we continue onto El Silencio where we meet our vehicle. We transfer (approx 1hr) to Dominical and then Uvita on the Pacific coast with it's tropical sandy beaches. Overnight Uvita.
Day 9: We transfer to Sierpe where we board our private boat. Taking our belongings with us for the next 3 days we travel through the mangroves along the Rio Sierpe which pours out into Drake Bay. Here we settle into our lodge in the Corcovado National Park. Our simple cabins are in the forest, 100m from the beach. We relax, swim and enjoy the peace of this remote and idyllic spot of paradise.
Day 10: Today we visit Cano Island, 10 miles off the coast. This paradise island rising like an emerald out of the sea has white-sand beaches, coastal cliffs and a dense interior forest. From the boat we may see schools of dolphins. Park authorities often shut the island due to environmental concerns. If this occurs we snorkel near the island and then travel to San Josecito beach.
Day 11: This morning we depart by boat along the untamed 12 mile Corcovado beach on the Osa Peninsula. Inhabited by jaguars and not many a human it is considered one of the most intense biological places on earth. We disembark at the Sirena Ranger Station were we walk some of the trails with possible sightings of jaguar, anteaters, peccary, sea turtles and many birds. We return by boat to our lodge.
Day 12: We journey back along the Rio Sierpe to our vehicle and drive to San Isidro del General, the country's highest road crossing the Cerro de la Muerte (3400m) and into the beautiful Savegre Valley. We stop at San Gerardo de Dota (2200m), a world famous place for seeing the Resplendent Quetzal. Overnight hotel.
Day 13: This morning's walk takes us into the forest to see the Quetzal, after which we drive to the Orosi Valley. From Purisil we hike alongside the Tapanti National Park before we arrive into the remote and beautiful El Copal Reserve and our small rustic eco-lodge in the forest (approx 5hrs walking).
Day 14: A 2hr morning walk in the El Copal Reserve with its tropical birds takes us to the village of El Humo. Here we board our vehicle and transfer to Cartago to visit the basilica and then onto San Jose. In the afternoon we have free time to leisurely enjoy San Jose.
Day 15: There is a single timed transfer to the airport, where KE group package services end.
There is no trekking above 2500m on this trip. There is one day which you cross a pass at 3400m whilst in a vehicle.