We all deserve a treat after the last year, but our kids need that reward more than we do! Adventure is top of the menu in Costa Rica and this fun-packed itinerary will see you creating family memories that will last a lifetime.
Highlights: Jungle adventures, beach fun, kayaking, volunteering at a wildlife rescue centre, sloth tour, snorkelling and a volcano!
Travel dates: 1 October 2021 – 12 December 2021 (Perfect for a half-term getaway!)
Duration: 11 days
Costa Rica Family Holiday Offer price: £1,835 per person (includes saving of £227.50 per person)
Offer includes: Flights, accommodation, transfer, tours on a mostly private basis (unless described as optional extras), based on 2 adults and 2 children under 11 sharing one room
Dive in to the beauty that awaits you below….
Day One – Flight to Costa Rica
Welcome to Costa Rica! We might be biased, but we think it really is one of the best places on earth to have a family adventure. With tropical jungles, sweeping beaches, endless active adventures on offer and more wildlife than you can shake a stick at – it’s got all the makings of the perfect family holiday.
After your flight to Costa Rica, we’d expect you and the kids will be rather tired! So, your English-speaking guide will meet you and drive you to your San Jose hotel in a private vehicle.
The first night of your holiday is spent at the Radisson San Jose hotel. It’s in a really convenient central location, with friendly staff, good food and indoor and outdoor pools for the kids (and adults!) to enjoy.
Upon arrival at the airport, you will be met by an English-speaking guide who will drive you to your hotel in private vehicle. Our guides are fantastic as they can give you helpful information to make the most of your time.
Day Two – Tortuguero National Park and village visit
Don’t forget to set the alarm this morning! You’ve got an early start from your San Jose hotel this morning for a shared transfer to your lodge in beautiful Tortuguero. The journey to your lodge is an adventure in itself!
The first part of the journey is approximately two hours by road, travelling through the Costa Rican landscape with plenty to keep the family entertained, just by looking out of the window.
Your transfer will drop you at the central dock where you’ll board a motorised canoe for the second – more adventurous – part of the transfer! This scenic river journey through the Costa Rican jungle takes around two hours, the kids will love trying to spot the rich array of wildlife that can be seen in the trees and on the banks of the river. After your morning adventure, you’ll arrive at Laguna Lodge just in time for lunch.
Costa Rica is known for its efforts to be green and eco-friendly wherever possible. Laguna Lodge is no exception. A comfortable and rustic “eco-lodge” set on a strip of wild beach in the Tortuguero park, with rooms dotted throughout beautiful tropical gardens.
The food is tasty, and they don’t scrimp on the portion sizes! Plus, there is a lovely pool area where you and the family can relax and cool off between excursions. The lodge is located on a beach, but swimming in the sea here is not recommended, so we recommend making the most of the pool area for sure. Like most of the accommodation in this area, the rooms tend to be simply and rustically furnished, so expect a fan but not a/c. The guided activities are very good, and this afternoon you can opt to take a laid-back tour of nearby Tortuguero Village, to get a real taste of local life.
Optional Turtle Nesting Tours (July-October only)
If you book this Costa Rica family holiday offer and arrive in Tortuguero before the end of October, you can opt to enjoy a night-time tour to watch the turtles nesting in the National Park. These tours are controlled by the national park rangers to ensure they are always ethical and that the turtles are never disturbed. Dependent on the weather, this tour can be booked and paid for locally. It would be an amazing family experience to remember.
Day Three – Boat safari along the Tortuguero Canals and Jungle Walk
This morning, you’ll head off with the family for a boat safari along the Tortuguero Canals. Your specialist guide will help you spot the animals and birds who make Tortuguero’s lush waterways their home. The guides here really know their stuff, so expect many fascinating facts and to learn a lot about Costa Rica’s rich wildlife.
Tortuguero Jungle Walk
After a dip in the lodge pool to cool off and an equally refreshing lunch, you’ll set out on a group guided nature walk this afternoon. There’s something really special about exploring the pristine rainforest on foot. The quietness of moving on foot greatly increases your chances of some up-close and magical wildlife sightings.
Day Four – Transfer to the Caribbean Coast for fun on the beach
Today the kids will be excited. You’re heading to the beach!! And not just any beach. Costa Rica’s Caribbean Coast is rugged, remote and beautiful. It’s the perfect place for some water-based adventures with the family.
You’ll be staying at Cariblue Beach and Jungle resort, the perfect place to base yourself if you are looking for a resort-style hotel with good leisure facilities and a great location. The town of Puerto Viejo is a 20-minute walk or 10-minute bike ride away. The ramshackle town is a genuinely enjoyable place to explore with its tasty food stalls, laid-back bars and reggae beats.
Day Five – Hiking & Snorkelling in Cahuita and Puerto Vargas
This is a day for the whole family. While away the hours exploring this beautiful national park and its beaches on foot, or take to the cooling coastline for a spot of snorkelling in the clear waters of the bay.
Day Six – Soak up the beauty of the Caribbean Coast
During your free time on the Caribbean Coast you can enjoy the many activities available or just do nothing and enjoy your beautiful surroundings! Perhaps the kids want to try their hand at surfing? Or maybe you just want to spend some time soaking up the sun, playing on the beach and unwinding in paradise together. That doesn’t sound half bad to us!
Plus, tomorrow you’ll travel to Costa Rica’s adventure capital! So, it’ll be good to be well rested and ready to dive in to adventures ahead.
Day Seven – Adventure awaits you all in Arenal
Today you’ll leave the Caribbean Coast for the drive west through the tropical lowlands and on to your hotel in the Arenal volcano region. The journey takes approximately 5 and a half hours, but the endless activities and excitement that awaits you and the family at the other end, make it all worthwhile.
Most famous for its perfect conical volcano, the Arenal region is one of the most visited in Costa Rica. And for good reason too! The volcano may have seen very little activity since 2010, but Arenal remains a popular place to visit due to the impressive spectacle of its imposing peak when the weather is clear, and also for the endless array of adventures on offer in the area. You’ll find tropical forests set up with hanging bridges, canopy zip lines, hiking trails, hot springs and horse-riding routes to tumbling waterfalls.
Day Eight – Sloth Tour
Arenal isn’t just about adrenaline and volcanoes! It’s also about the sloths! We’d always recommend a sloth tour in this part of Costa Rica, with the chance to see both two-toed and three toed sloths, it’s sure to have the whole family wowed.
Following fantastic guides through the jungle, you’ll learn so much about these wonderful animals as well as the surrounding landscape. Did you know, although they get a bad rep for being lazy, sloths actually only sleep for 10 hours a day?! We know a few humans who can easily manage that! As well as sloths, you may be lucky enough to see monkeys, leaf cutter ants and poison dart frogs.
You’re guaranteed a spectacular afternoon. Being so close to these incredible animals really is an honour. With multiple pinch yourself moments guaranteed, you can be sure the kids will be talking about this when they go back to school.
Free time for activities in Arenal
For the rest of the afternoon there are plenty of tours here to suit every interest. Whether you fancy a walk through the volcanic national parks, a hike up the volcano itself before soaking in thermal springs, a wildlife boat trip or even zip lining, paddle boarding or white-water rafting. Have a chat to us about what extra adventures can be added on to this Costa Rica holiday.
Day Nine – Volunteering at a Wildlife rescue centre
Proyecto Asis Wildlife Refuge with Volunteering
Proyecto Asis Wildlife Rescue Center is well worth the visit, even if you only have a short time in the region. You’ll get an introduction to the Proyecto Asis and its work from a trained naturalist and explore the reserve with your guide to get to know each animal and their story. The guides are so friendly here and will really help you and the kids to think about conservation in a new way. Many of the animals found at Proyecto Asis have been rescued after being found kept as illegal pets, or because they are found in need of special attention as they are defenceless, wounded or sick. From sloths through to parrots and racoons, you’ll meet a wide range of wildlife here.
You’ll even have the opportunity to learn how to prepare food for the animals and take the food to the animals for feeding. It’s a great way to gain a greater knowledge of the local wildlife and feel like you’ve played a part in supporting a great local project.
Day Ten – Kayaking on Lake Arenal
Today you’ll take a scenic kayaking excursion on the beautiful Lake Arenal, one of the largest lakes in Latin America. This activity is suitable for complete beginners, so you and the kids will be absolutely fine! You can take it easy, enjoy the scenery, sounds and wildlife in the surrounding forests.
Day Eleven – Private tranfer back to San Jose airport
After an adventure packed holiday, it’s time to transfer back to the airport and make your way home. Just think of the memories and shared experiences you’ll be going home with though! This Costa Rica family holiday is just the reward you deserve after such a horrible year!
It’s so rare we do offers here at HA as we’re always working our hardest behind the scenes to ensure we’re offering the very best price possible to you. However, due to the impact of Covid-19 on the tourism industry in Costa Rica, we’ve been able to work closely with our ground agents to secure this fantastic Costa Rica family holiday offer. The availability is very limited, so we recommend getting in touch as soon as you can to chat to Lou, our Costa Rica specialist, more about this holiday if it tickles your fancy! She’d be so delighted to talk you through this fantastic Costa Rica holiday offer and share her personal highlights and stories of her travels. You can give her a call on 01242 253 073 or email her at [email protected] if you want to chat more about it!