Costa Rica & Panama

Overview

What's Included

  • International flights and current taxes
  • Domestic transportation
  • 3* plus – 4* accommodation
  • Meals as stated
  • Touring with guides and entrance fees

Full Itinerary

Day 1 - Fly to San Jose

Fly to San José, Costa Rica’s vibrant, charming capital, arriving the same day. You will be met at the airport and transferred to your hotel. Enjoy the rest of the day at leisure.

Day 2 - Chocolate Tour

Embark on a tour all about delicious chocolate! Learn about the role of cacao in Pre- Colombian Central America and its importance to Costa Rica today and the chocolate making process before tucking in to a few samples. Transfer by road to the Arenal area, named for the magnificent Arenal Volcano. Take a relaxed soak in the local hot springs before dinner.

Day 3: Mistico Park Hanging Bridges

In the shadow of Arenal, the Mistico Park gives a whole new perspective on the rainforest with a series of bridges and suspension bridges at canopy level. As you walk through the trees, you’ll be able to spot all sorts of wildlife, birds, flowers and vegetation. Spend the morning walking the easy trails and taking in your beautiful natural surroundings. The rest of the day is at leisure.

Day 4 - Monteverde By Lake

Depart Arenal and voyage across Arenal Lake to the little town of Rio Chiquito. The views of the volcano as you cruise will be fantastic. Transfer the rest of the way to Monteverde by road and enjoy an afternoon tour of the Don Juan coffee estate. Here you’ll learn all about cultivating and processing coffee beans, chocolate and sugarcane before a tasting of the estate’s wares.

Day 5 - Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve

Spend the day exploring the natural wonders of the Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve. This reserve covers 26,000 acres of virgin forest which a huge amount of Costa Rica’s native flora and fauna call home. The reserve shelters jaguars, pumas and over 450 species of bird, including the quetzal. Also spend some time at Renario, an education centre that is home to native frogs, toads and amphibians.

Day 6 - Into Panama

Return to San Jose and fly to Panama’s capital. Panama City is considered Central America’s most cosmopolitan city thanks to the international importance of the Panama Canal.

Day 7 - Explore Panama City

Discover more about Panama City’s roots at Panama Vieja – founded in 1515, it was the first permanent European settlement on the Pacific. Continue on to Casco Vieja, Panama City’s lovely colonial old town. Later, visit Miraflores Locks on the Panama Canal and spend some time in the visitor centre where you can learn all about the canal’s construction and its international importance.

Day 8 - Discover Colon

Hop on a train and travel to the Caribbean city of Colon, which sits on the opposite end of the Panama Canal to Panama City. The train runs along the canal, past locks, through jungle and across Gatun Lake, giving the perfect overview of this incredible feat of engineering. Visit the colourful fishing village of Portobello. Once Central America’s greatest port, many homes are built amongst the ruins of colonial forts. Next, discover the UNESCO World Heritage Fort San Lorenzo, built in the 16th century, before admiring the Gatun locks on the canal by cruising through them.

Day 9 - Anton Valley

Travel out of the city up to the cooler climes village of El Valle de Anton. Sat in the caldera of the dormant El Valle volcano, the village is surrounded by some beautiful nature and you’ll visit the lovely Chorro del Macho waterfall and learn the folktale of La India Dormida mountain.

Day 10 - Embera Tribe

Travel deep into the Panamanian rainforest to visit a traditional village of the Embera people. Arriving by dugout canoe, you’ll be welcomed to the village with traditional music and spend some time learning about this rainforest community’s way of life, their history and their culture. You’ll also share lunch with the villagers and have the opportunity to purchase handicrafts made by them.

Day 11 - Rainforest Tram

Cruise the waters of Lake Gatun, a major part of the Panama Canal, admiring the beauty of the surrounding rainforest and the machinery of the canal itself. Later, explore the virgin rainforest at Gamboa, wandering the shady forest floor before flying through the canopy on an aerial tram, within touching distance of the treetops. From up here you may be lucky enough to spot colourful birds and butterflies, sloths and capuchin monkeys.

Day 12 - Bocas Del Toro

Fly from Panama City to the relaxed and friendly Caribbean beach town of Bocas del Toro where the rest of the day will be at leisure.

Day 13 - Day at Leisure

Enjoy a full free day at Bocas del Toro to relax on the beach or explore.

Day 14 - Return to Panama

The day is at leisure until your return flight to Panama City. This evening, enjoy a farewell meal.

Day 15 -

The day is at leisure until your return flight to Panama City. This evening, enjoy a farewell meal.

Hand Picked By

Carla Wilson

Fascinated by new places, aesthetically beautiful scenery, and exotic cuisine, I am keen to share my knowledge with you and can make recommendations for any special occasions

Carla Wilson

Additional Information

  • Date: 7th February 2019
  • Board Basis: Based on Twin Share
  • Duration: 15 nights
  • Departure Airport: London
  • Guide Price: £3,990pp
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