Costa Rica to Panama

Costa Rica to Panama

From $ 1,995 AUD

Description

Nature puts on a spectacular show on this adventure through Central America. Spend time exploring the cloud forests, jungles and marine environments of Costa Rica’s national parks and you’ll be rewarded with incredible wildlife-spotting. It won’t take long before you start recognising different sorts of monkeys, unusual Baird’s tapirs, and the bright crimson and green coat of the elusive resplendent quetzal. From the verdant hills and misty mountains of San Gerardo de Dota and Boquete, to the beachside town of Santa Catalina, the incredible landscape is an adventure-seeker’s dream. Hike, bike, surf, zipline, rock climb or simply chill out on a hammock – the choice is yours. Then journey to energetic Panama City for a different sort of thrill.

Trip Name
Costa Rica to Panama
Last Updated
2019-11-19
Days
8
Capacity
12
Highlights
  • A trip to Costa Rica wouldn’t be complete without a visit to one of its famous cloud forests. Visit Los Quetzales National Park for a chance to see the cloud forest and the park’s namesake bird, the resplendent quetzal
  • Costa Rica boasts some of the most biologically diverse places on earth – Corcovado National Park being one of them. Spend time exploring its jungles, lagoons and swamps and be rewarded with incredible wildlife-spotting (including monkeys, sloths and Baird’s tapirs, to name a few)
  • Waterfalls, wildflowers, hot springs and mountains - beautiful Boquete has it all. Tour a coffee plantation, ride a bike along a river or take a relaxing walk through the forest, keeping an eye out for tricky monkeys and tropical birds
  • Explore the eclectic streets of Panama City and admire the engineering masterpiece of the Panama Canal

Itinerary

ITINERARY CHANGES: Our itineraries are updated regularly throughout the year based on customer feedback and to reflect the current situation in each destination. The information included in this Essential Trip Information may therefore differ from when you first booked your trip. It is important that you print and review a final copy prior to travel so that you have the latest updates. Due to weather, local conditions, transport schedules, public holidays or other factors, further changes may be necessary to your itinerary once in country. The order and timing of included activities in each location may also vary seasonally to ensure our travellers have the best experience. Your tour leader will keep you up to date with any changes once on tour. OPTIONAL ACTIVITIES: A selection of optional activities that have been popular with past travellers are listed in the day-to-day itinerary. This isn't an exhaustive list and should be used as a guide only for some of what might be available. Prices are approximate, are for entrance only, and don’t include transport to and from the sites or local guides unless indicated. All activities are subject to availability, and may be on a join-in basis. It may not be possible to do all the activities listed in the time available at each destination, so some pre-planning for what you are most interested in is advised. When it's recommended that travellers pre-book these activities, look for a note in the Special Information section of the day-to-day itinerary. For most, they can either be organised independently on the day, or let your leader know you are interested and they can assist. Where activities are considered medium or high risk, we work with operators whose safety and credentials we have sighted and assessed. Although it is possible that you may find the same activity cheaper with another operator on the ground, we cannot vouch for the safety or quality of that operator. Medium and high risk activities not listed above have not been assessed by us and as such our staff and leaders are unable to assist you with organising these activities. Activities that contravene our Responsible Travel policies are also not listed. Please remember that the decision to partake in any activity not listed is at your own discretion and risk.

Day 1 - San Jose
Hola! Welcome to San Jose. Your adventure begins with a welcome meeting at 6 pm where you’ll meet your tour leader and fellow travellers. Continue the introductions with an optional group dinner after the meeting. San Jose is a bustling city with lively markets, intriguing museums and a dynamic atmosphere. Otherwise, a good place to start is the main plaza. Artisan booths are common here, so you never know when an art fair will pop up. The Gold Museum has an amazing collection of indigenous gold art. If you're in the mood for a bit of shopping, head to the outdoor market in the Plaza de la Cultura or the city's Mercado Central (Central Market), where you can buy anything from kitschy souvenirs and handicrafts to authentic local cuisine. As this trip spends little time here, we recommend arriving a day or two earlier to see the sights or perhaps book an Urban Adventure with a local guide.
Day 2 - San Gerardo de Dota
Depart around 8 am for the sleepy town of San Gerardo de Dota (this three hour journey will be by private vehicle), where crisp mountain air, lush cloud forests and some of the best bird watching in the country await. Nestled in the Savegre River Valley beneath the remote Talamanca Mountain Range, not many tourists venture to this hidden slice of paradise. On top of being a bird watchers haven – spot roughly 200 species of birds including hummingbirds, woodpeckers and the elusive resplendent quetzal – San Gerardo de Dota boasts pristine hiking trails and fantastic trout fishing. Take an orientation walk with your leader to get your bearings.
Day 3 - Los Quetzales National Park / Corcovado
Spend time at Los Quetzales National Park for a chance to see the cloud forest and the park’s namesake bird, the resplendent quetzal. The park contains eight trails of varying length and difficulty, and is usually blanketed in a cloudy haze. The crimson and green resplendent quetzal is notoriously shy, so if you’re really keen on spotting one, consider hiring a local guide. The park is also home to big jungle cats like pumas and jaguars, monkeys, Baird’s tapirs and a slew of other bird species. After some time in the park, travel to Corcovado. It’s a seven-hour journey to this reserve on Costa Rica’s south-west peninsula; spend this time brushing up on your Spanish via an informal lesson from your tour leader, taking in the passing scenery or simply catching some shut-eye.
Day 4 - Corcovado
Visit the Corcovado National Park, the second largest national park in Costa Rica and one of the most biologically diverse places on Earth. It has 13 different ecosystems within its boundaries including highland cloud forests, lagoons, mangrove swamps and marine habitats to name just a few. The day is yours to explore the park as you choose.
Day 5 - Boquete
Cross the border and journey to Boquete (about 6 hours). A picturesque town in Panama’s verdant highlands, Boquete is surrounded by mountains, rivers, forest reserves and colourful wildflowers, as well as coffee plantations and orange groves. Acquaint yourself with its breathtaking scenery on an orientation walk with your leader, followed by dinner in town with the group. Your accommodation is a rustic Tree Trek lodge five kilometres outside of town. Located in the hills at the edge of the forest, enjoy glorious views over the valley from the property.
Day 6 - Boquete
Enjoy a free day to explore Boquete. The area surrounding the town is famous for its coffee. Consider a visit to a local coffee plantation for an insight into coffee production, or perhaps kick back in town with a cup of local brew. Get active on a guided bike tour or hike through the mini canyons and hidden waterfalls outside of town. Boquete’s stunning scenery makes it a fantastic location for ziplining. Or for a more relaxing pursuit, soak your muscles at the Calderas hot springs.
Day 7 - Panama City
Travel to Panama City, Central America's glitziest capital. Depart at 9 am for this eight to nine-hour journey by public bus, changing bus in David and continuing on to the capital. Arrive late afternoon and explore the historic Casco Viejo (Old Town) on a leader-led orientation walk. The cobbled centre is an alluring mix of crumbling architecture and hip bars and boutiques. The rest of the day is yours to enjoy. You may choose to treat your taste buds to an evening food tour and sample local specialties like Panamanian coffee, craft beer and ceviche.
Day 8 - Panama City
There are no planned activities today, though we recommend staying a few extra days to make the most of this exciting city. You may want to visit the engineering marvel that is the Panama Canal or go wildlife-spotting at Soberania National Park.

Trip Dates

StartEndPrice FromRoom Type
15-12-201922-12-2019AUD $ 1,789-
22-12-201929-12-2019AUD $ 1,989-
12-01-202019-01-2020AUD $ 1,764-
26-01-202002-02-2020AUD $ 1,904-
23-02-202001-03-2020AUD $ 1,772-
29-03-202005-04-2020AUD $ 1,798-
05-04-202012-04-2020AUD $ 1,730-
12-04-202019-04-2020AUD $ 1,696-
31-05-202007-06-2020AUD $ 1,696-
26-07-202002-08-2020AUD $ 1,696-
23-08-202030-08-2020AUD $ 1,696-
13-09-202020-09-2020AUD $ 1,696-
25-10-202001-11-2020AUD $ 1,696-
15-11-202022-11-2020AUD $ 1,696-
29-11-202006-12-2020AUD $ 1,764-
13-12-202020-12-2020AUD $ 1,764-
20-12-202027-12-2020AUD $ 2,075-
10-01-202117-01-2021AUD $ 1,995-
24-01-202131-01-2021AUD $ 1,995-
21-02-202128-02-2021AUD $ 1,995-
28-03-202104-04-2021AUD $ 1,995-
04-04-202111-04-2021AUD $ 1,995-
11-04-202118-04-2021AUD $ 1,995-
30-05-202106-06-2021AUD $ 1,995-
25-07-202101-08-2021AUD $ 1,995-
22-08-202129-08-2021AUD $ 1,995-
12-09-202119-09-2021AUD $ 1,995-
24-10-202131-10-2021AUD $ 1,995-
14-11-202121-11-2021AUD $ 1,995-
28-11-202105-12-2021AUD $ 1,995-
12-12-202119-12-2021AUD $ 1,995-
19-12-202126-12-2021AUD $ 1,995-

Accommodation

Hotel (5 nights),Lodge (2 nights)

Transport

Private vehicle,Public bus,Shared boat

Map