Most people visiting Manuel Antonio spend about 8 to 10 days in Costa Rica, which usually includes some time in Arenal/La Fortuna and Monteverde as well. For travelers wanting to visit Manuel Antonio exclusively, plan about 5 days for a well-paced trip. A fast-paced highlights trip is possible in 3 or 4 days for travelers with limited time. Check out our favorite Manuel Antonio trips below.

How many days do you need?

  • Most travelers spend 5 days in Manuel Antonio
  • Visiting Manuel Antonio in 3 or 4 days is possible, but will feel rushed
  • With 6 or more days, most travelers choose to add more stops to their trip
  • The most common extensions are Arenal/La Fortuna and Monteverde

How Many Days Should You Spend in Costa Rica?

Recommended Itineraries for Manuel Antonio

Recommended Itinerary for 5 Days

Manuel Antonio National Park on the Pacific Coast is known for its diverse wildlife and beautiful beaches
Manuel Antonio National Park on the Pacific Coast is known for its diverse wildlife and beautiful beaches
Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in San José San José
Day 2 San José Transfer to Manuel Antonio Manuel Antonio
Day 3 Santa Juana Waterfall Experience Manuel Antonio
Day 4 Sea Kayaking & Snorkeling at Manuel Antonio Manuel Antonio
Day 5 Manuel Antonio to San José - Depart Costa Rica  


This quick getaway will let you experience the many sides of Costa Rica in just five days. After enjoying an evening in San José, you'll head to Manuel Antonio, a national park boasting some of Costa Rica's most famous white sand beaches and coastal jungles. Hike, kayak, and snorkel until your heart's content before heading home. Read more

Extended Itineraries

6-Day Itinerary Including Arenal/La Fortuna

Arenal Volcano
Arenal Volcano
Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrival in San José - Transfer to La Fortuna & Hotsprings Arenal/La Fortuna
Day 2 Arenal Gondola, Zip-Line and Canopy Tour Arenal/La Fortuna
Day 3 Day Trip to Raft Rio Balsa Arenal/La Fortuna
Day 4 Arenal to Manuel Antonio Manuel Antonio
Day 5 Morning Free Time - Afternoon Sunset Catamaran Cruise Manuel Antonio
Day 6 Manuel Antonio to San José - Depart Costa Rica  


This exciting 6-day itinerary is perfect for travelers who want to experience quintessential Costa Rica. You'll take in awe-inspiring views of Arenal volcano, and have an exciting rafting day on the Sarapiqui River before heading to Manuel Antonio to explore the jungle and white sand beaches of this nature lovers paradise. Read more

8-Day Itinerary Including Arenal/La Fortuna and Monteverde

Costa Rica's Arenal Volcano.
Costa Rica's Arenal Volcano.
Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrival in San José - Transfer to La Fortuna & Hotsprings Arenal/La Fortuna
Day 2 La Fortuna Waterfall - Free Afternoon Arenal/La Fortuna
Day 3 Arenal to Monteverde by Boat with Nocturnal Nature Tour Monteverde
Day 4 Sky Walk, Sky Tram & Sky Trek Zipline Monteverde
Day 5 Monteverde Transfer to Manuel Antonio - Free Afternoon Manuel Antonio
Day 6 Damas Island Kayaking Tour Manuel Antonio
Day 7 Morning Free Time - Afternoon Sunset Catamaran Cruise Manuel Antonio
Day 8 Manuel Antonio to San José - Depart Costa Rica  


This 8-day trip is ideal for travelers looking to experience Costa Rica's highlights. Go for a dip in Arenal's hot springs and spot monkeys and other wildlife on hikes around the famous volcano. Continue to Monteverde, where you'll discover the remarkable flora and fauna of the cloud forest. Finally, spend a few days in Manuel Antonio National Park, kayaking through turquoise waters and relaxing on pristine white sand beaches. Read more

15-Day Itinerary Including Arenal/La Fortuna, Monteverde, and Tortuguero

Toucans can often be spotted among the treetops in Tortuguero National Park
Toucans can often be spotted among the treetops in Tortuguero National Park
Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in San José San José
Day 2 Fly San José to Tortuguero National Park Tortuguero
Day 3 Turtle Spotting in Tortuguero Tortuguero
Day 4 Tortuguero to La Fortuna Arenal/La Fortuna
Day 5 Arenal - Whitewater Rafting on the Sarapiquí River Arenal/La Fortuna
Day 6 Arenal Hanging Bridges & La Fortuna Waterfall Arenal/La Fortuna
Day 7 Early Birding and Private Nocturnal Nature Hike Arenal/La Fortuna
Day 8 Boat from Arenal to Monteverde - Nocturnal Nature Tour Monteverde
Day 9 Zip-Line Fun in the Cloud Forest Monteverde
Day 10 Santa Elena Birdwatching & Jungle Hike Monteverde
Day 11 Monteverde to Manuel Antonio Manuel Antonio
Day 12 Guided Hike of Manuel Antonio National Park Manuel Antonio
Day 13 Kayaking - Damas Island Manuel Antonio
Day 14 Snorkeling & Sunset Catamaran Cruise in Manuel Antonio Manuel Antonio
Day 15 Manuel Antonio to San José, Depart Costa Rica  


Experience Costa Rica's most spectacular national parks on this 15-day tour. You'll catch glimpses of sea turtles and monkeys in Tortuguero National Park and spot hundreds of bird species in the Monteverde Cloud Forest. Then it's time to head to the countries largest and most famous volcano, Arenal, for a mix of wildlife and heart pumping excursions. Finally, you'll end the trip in  Manuel Antonio, where you'll snorkel among colorful fish and traverse jungle trails. Read more

How to Get to Manuel Antonio National Park

Manuel Antonio National Park is a microcosm of Costa Rica's most iconic offerings: pristine beaches, rainforests with an abundance of wildlife, and active outdoor pursuits. It’s also fairly easy to reach from other major hubs in Costa Rica. Read more