Costa Rica 9-Day Tours & Itineraries

Explore 30 trips designed by local kimkim specialists to get ideas for your trip to Costa Rica.

You'll have time to experience the best of multiple regions with 9 days in Costa Rica—with the flexibility to do it your way. Beach and animal lovers can dig deeper into the country's authentic offerings by heading to the lesser-known Caribbean Coast. If you'd prefer to see the most famous parts of the country, choose an itinerary that takes you from the jungles of Arenal Volcano to the unique cloud forest eco-system of Monteverde, ending your adventure with some beach time in Manuel Antonio or Guanacaste. Other tours are all about cycling, rafting, culture, and more—check them out below.

See more options below, or check out 9 Days in Costa Rica: 5 Unique Itineraries.

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Arenal Volcano
Map of Family-Friendly Arenal and Manuel Antonio National Park- 9 Days
Family-Friendly Arenal and Manuel Antonio National Park- 9 Days

Fun for the whole family, this itinerary covers two of Costa Rica's most famous areas. Arenal and Manuel Antonio are some of the best representations of Costa Rica; Arenal area features one of the most famous volcanos in the country, surrounded by lush tropical rainforest, while Manuel Antonio National Park is renown for its white sandy beaches and vast diversity of tropical plants and wildlife.

End the trip with a drive to the Pacific coast for some beach time
Map of Highlights of Costa Rica: Arenal, Monteverde & Manuel Antonio - 9 Days
Highlights of Costa Rica: Arenal, Monteverde & Manuel Antonio - 9 Days

The jewel of Central America, Costa Rica, offers an array of adventures, from city to cloud forest to the sea. This weeklong itinerary includes trekking near an active volcano, some of the world’s best bird-watching, and snorkeling with sea turtles. It's a trip that encompasses the country's most spectacular and varied landscapes, plus an opportunity to savor the culture of local villages as well as that of San José, Costa Rica's dynamic capital city.

End the trip with a visit to the Pacific coast for some beach time
Map of Costa Rica Highlights: Arenal, Monteverde, and Manuel Antonio - 9 Days
Costa Rica Highlights: Arenal, Monteverde, and Manuel Antonio - 9 Days

The jewel of Central America, Costa Rica offers everything—cities, beaches, and many unique ecosystems to explore. This itinerary encompasses the country’s most spectacular landscapes, plus an opportunity to savor the culture of local villages and capital city. Hike near a volcano, experience world-class bird-watching, snorkel with sea turtles, and more.

A beach near Puerto Viejo on Costa Rica's Caribbean side
Map of Caribbean Coast Adventure - 9 Days
Caribbean Coast Adventure - 9 Days

On this 9-day trip, you will experience the best of the country's tropical flora and fauna. From rainforest hikes to snorkeling in coral reefs.  This itinerary is ideal for travelers going to Costa Rica during the "green season" (May - November), as the Caribbean coast stays relatively dry during these rainy months. It's also the best time to see turtles nesting on the beaches in Tortuguero National Park (July-October).

Sensoria, in Rincón de la Vieja National Park
Map of Costa Rica Adventure: Whitewater, Volcanoes & Surfing - 9 Days
Costa Rica Adventure: Whitewater, Volcanoes & Surfing - 9 Days

This fun 9-day itinerary highlights Costa Rica's amazing natural scenery through a thrilling series of adventurous activities including whitewater rafting, kayaking, zip-lining, and more. Starting in the nation's capital, you'll make your way to rivers, jungles, waterfalls, and cone-shaped volcanoes, culminating on the Pacific coast with time to do some surfing in Tamarindo's famous beaches.

Costa Rica's dramatic Western coastline
Map of Discover Costa Rica's Nature and Beaches - 9 Days
Discover Costa Rica's Nature and Beaches - 9 Days

Some 25% of the total area of Costa Rica is protected. You'll see evidence of this in the country's many national parks and reserves—the goal being to ensure that Costa Rica's natural wonders and delicate eco-systems remain viable for years to come. This is great for visitors such as yourself, who can luxuriate in Costa Rica's natural beauty on this immersive 9-day itinerary.

Scarlet Macaws
Map of Romance in the Jungle - 9 Days
Romance in the Jungle - 9 Days

This 9-day Costa Rican itinerary is ideal for adventure-loving couples. Starting and ending in San José, the two of you will ford the scenic Río Pacuare (one of the best white-water rafting rivers in the world), explore lush jungle, and enjoy downtime together in a luxury eco-lodge.

costa rica
Map of Luxury in Costa Rica: Jungle Paradise & Exotic Wildlife - 9 Days
Luxury in Costa Rica: Jungle Paradise & Exotic Wildlife - 9 Days

This tropical getaway will appeal to anyone who's ever wanted to experience Costa Rica's most famous sites as well as its exotic wildlife. Over nine days you'll travel through the north of the country and stay in luxury accommodations between embarking on active excursions. This includes such diverse activities as hiking and nocturnal nature walks to kayaking and horseback riding on the beach. 

The arid landscapes and stunning beaches of the Guanacaste Province
Map of Costa Rica Road Trip: Volcanoes, Cloud Forests & Pacific Beaches - 9 Days
Costa Rica Road Trip: Volcanoes, Cloud Forests & Pacific Beaches - 9 Days

This 9-day self-drive adventure covers three of Costa Rica's most distinct, exotic, and naturally beautiful regions: Arenal Volcano National Park, the Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve, and the Guanacaste Province's Pacific coast. Set off from the capital of San José to explore the lush jungles and imposing volcanoes of Arenal, then make your way to the cloud forests of Monteverde for zip-lining and wildlife spotting. Head for the coast to end your trip on the spectacular beaches of the Guanacaste Province, where you can surf, snorkel, and go dolphin watching on a sunset catamaran cruise.

The Guanacaste region on the Pacific Coast is known for its arid landscape and beautiful beaches
Map of Coast to Coast Adventure: Tortuguero, Arenal Volcano, & Guanacaste - 9 Days
Coast to Coast Adventure: Tortuguero, Arenal Volcano, & Guanacaste - 9 Days

Experience both the Caribbean and Pacific coasts of Costa Rica — and all that's in between — on this 9-day adventure. Starting in the bustling capital of San Jose, you'll make your way to Tortuguero National Park, where you'll watch sea turtles hatch on the beach. Then head inland to Arenal Volcano and its magnificent rainforest trails. After a long day of hiking, soothe your muscles in the natural hot springs at Tabacón. After a river wildlife safari and a chocolate lesson, you'll travel to the sparkling waters of the Gulf of Papagayo. Here you'll go snorkeling and surfing, and end your journey with a spectacular sunset cruise around the bay.

Sunset off the coast of Guanacaste over the Pacific Ocean
Map of Coast to Coast: Beach and Cloud Forest Adventure - 9 Days
Coast to Coast: Beach and Cloud Forest Adventure - 9 Days

Experience both the Caribbean and Pacific coasts of Costa Rica — and all that's in between — on this 9-day adventure. Starting in the bustling capital of San Jose, you'll make your way to Tortuguero National Park, where you'll watch sea turtles hatch on the beach. Then head inland to the Monteverde Cloud Forest for incredible wildlife and rainforest trails. After two nights in the heart of the jungle, you'll travel to the sparkling waters of the Gulf of Papagayo. Here you'll go snorkeling and surfing, and end your journey with a spectacular sunset cruise around the bay.

La Fortuna Waterfall
Map of Costa Rica Nature Expedition: Turrialba, Irazú, Sarapiqui, Arenal, & More - 9 Days
Costa Rica Nature Expedition: Turrialba, Irazú, Sarapiqui, Arenal, & More - 9 Days

Embark on a nine-day, nature-driven expedition through Costa Rica. After landing in the current capital, discover the history of the former capital of Cartago en route to Irazú Volcano and Turrialba. Next, visit the significant archaeological site of Guayabo National Monument and the biodiverse CATIE Bontanical Gardens. Then, spend time discovering the rainforest and rivers of Sarapiqui. Embark on a chocolate tour before reaching La Fortuna for the grand finale—the beauty of Arenal Volcano and its incredible surroundings.

Dominical Beach
Map of Costa Rica Beach Getaway: Dominical, Jacó, & Santa Teresa - 9 Days
Costa Rica Beach Getaway: Dominical, Jacó, & Santa Teresa - 9 Days

On this nine-day getaway, explore three of Costa Rica’s most prized beaches, parks, and nature reserves—along with plenty of downtime. First, venture to Dominical, home of a biodiverse national park and a great base for watersports, like sea kayaking and tubing. Then, head to Jacó Beach to take a jungle river cruise and zipline over the rainforest. Next is Santa Teresa Beach to see a nature reserve and a massive waterfall. The trip winds down with some sightseeing in the capital city of San José.

Arenal Volcano
Map of From Waterfalls to the Coast: Luxury Escape to Costa Rica - 9 Days
From Waterfalls to the Coast: Luxury Escape to Costa Rica - 9 Days

When you have to get away from it all yet you also hunger for adventure, there's only one place to go: Costa Rica. On this nine-day itinerary, you'll experience the best of both worlds, from relaxing in natural hot springs to soaring over the rainforest canopy on a zip-line tour. You'll also venture into national parks and reserves for exotic wildlife safaris, all while staying in luxury accommodations every night.

Arenal Volcano
Map of Costa Rica Outdoor Exploration: Monteverde, Arenal, Tortuguero - 9 Days
Costa Rica Outdoor Exploration: Monteverde, Arenal, Tortuguero - 9 Days

This is a special trip for nature lovers to satisfy the adventurer's soul. You will visit the most prominent places in Costa Rica and enjoy beautiful landscapes while experiencing the great variety of flora and fauna of this little paradise. A lot of outdoor adventure awaits you, combining exciting jungle exploration, interesting volcano hikes, boat safari with animal sightings, and beach leisure.

Beach in Drakes Bay on the Osa Peninsula
Map of Active Wildlife Adventure in Costa Rica - 9 days
Active Wildlife Adventure in Costa Rica - 9 days

This active 9-day itinerary is designed to appeal to nature lovers and adventure fiends of every stripe. It starts on the southern Pacific coast, in the remote, wild Corcovado National Park. Here you'll enjoy rugged hikes abounding with wildlife-spotting opportunities. Then it's off to the north where you'll explore the misty cloud forests of Monteverde and fly over the forest canopy on a zip-line tour.  After a visit to the famed Arenal Volcano, it's time for another hike, this time to the Hule Lagoon, an ancient crater lake like something out of Conan Doyle's "Lost World."

costa rica
Map of Costa Rica Indigenous Experience, Farm Life & Arenal Volcano - 9 Days
Costa Rica Indigenous Experience, Farm Life & Arenal Volcano - 9 Days

This is a unique vacation in that you'll mix the highlights of Costa Rica with a rewarding cultural exchange. It's a nine-day journey that begins on the Caribbean coast with a visit to an indigenous village followed by a day on a farm in the Arenal region. You'll finish with some exciting volcano hikes and then relax in luxurious natural hot springs.

Take the kids to see the animals on a traditional farm in Costa Rica
Map of Costa Rica Family Fun: Culture, Wildlife & Cloud Forests - 9 Days
Costa Rica Family Fun: Culture, Wildlife & Cloud Forests - 9 Days

This 9-day family-friendly Costa Rica adventure offers more than most traditional itineraries and includes a hands-on farm experience, cooking class, and horseback riding. Geared to travelers with children, the journey starts with sightseeing in San José, then moves on to Arenal, where you'll swim at the base of La Fortuna Waterfall and spend a day on a local farm. Finish up the trip in Monteverde, touring the cloud forest and the region's famed orchid gardens before soaring above the rainforest on the longest zip-line in Latin America.

costa rica
Map of Tropical Adventures and Luxury Retreats in Costa Rica - 9 Days
Tropical Adventures and Luxury Retreats in Costa Rica - 9 Days

When you want to combine luxury and beauty in a tropical getaway, there's no better destination than Costa Rica. On this nine-day excursion, you'll alternate between luxury spa treatments and adventurous excursions. This includes a whitewater rafting trip down the famous Pacuare River and a hike to some of the most secluded tropical waterfalls in the country.

Monteverde Cloud Forest
Map of Costa Rican Outdoor Adventure: Arenal, Monteverde, & Samara Beach - 9 Days
Costa Rican Outdoor Adventure: Arenal, Monteverde, & Samara Beach - 9 Days

Enjoy a few of the best outdoor highlights of Costa Rica on this nine-day adventure. Do some sightseeing in the capital city, then conquer the rapids on a rafting trip down the Pacuare River. Next, go canyoning, head out on a nature walk, and soak in the hot springs around Arenal Volcano. Then, explore the cloud forest of Monteverde on horseback and go ziplining through the canopy. The trip concludes with some surfing, snorkeling, and relaxation on Samara Beach, before returning to San José.

Relaxing in the water
Map of Unique Costa Rica: Honeymoon Memories in Paradise  - 9 Days
Unique Costa Rica: Honeymoon Memories in Paradise - 9 Days

Spend an unforgettable honeymoon in Costa Rica on this nine-day trip that mixes adrenaline-rushing adventure with plenty of beach relaxation. You'll explore the jungle, go rafting and horseback riding, go snorkeling on the coast, and more on this whirlwind getaway.

costa rica
Map of Costa Rica Beach, Rainforest & Pacuare River Journey- 9 Days
Costa Rica Beach, Rainforest & Pacuare River Journey- 9 Days

It's time to ditch the elliptical and venture into the tropics for an unforgettable excursion in Costa Rica. This physically demanding nine-day journey begins on the Pacific coast, where you'll travel overland by mountain bike over the Continental Divide. Then trade the wheels for a raft as you paddle down exotic rivers towards your ultimate destination: the stunning Caribbean coast.

costa rica
Map of Exotic Wildlife and Luxury Adventure in Costa Rica - 9 Days
Exotic Wildlife and Luxury Adventure in Costa Rica - 9 Days

Only in Costa Rica, where unspoiled nature and luxury resorts exist side by side, can you mix adventure and pampering. This nine-day itinerary includes horseback riding through local villages, hiking along secluded beaches, and exotic bird-watching. And at the end of each day, you'll rest and recharge in the best hotels in the country.

bird
Map of Birding Highlights of Costa Rica - 9 Days
Birding Highlights of Costa Rica - 9 Days

Any serious birding enthusiast must at some point make the pilgrimage to Costa Rica. There are over 850 avian species in this tiny Central American nation, so there's no shortage of great birding opportunities. On this unforgettable nine-day itinerary you'll take to the mountains, jungles, and coastline, venturing into national parks and dense rainforests to view the most elusive, exotic, and beautiful birds in Costa Rica.

costa rica
Map of Costa Rica Adventure at Arenal Volcano & the Pacuare River - 9 Days
Costa Rica Adventure at Arenal Volcano & the Pacuare River - 9 Days

Costa Rica offers a number of exotic adventure activities, be it cycling near tropical beaches, traveling around active volcanoes, or braving the whitewater on a rafting trip. On this nine-day active tour of Costa Rica, you'll do all of this plus hike through rainforests on suspension bridges and trek to exotic waterfalls. You can even soak your weary muscles in natural hot springs.

costa rica
Map of Exotic Birding Road Trip in Costa Rica - 9 Days
Exotic Birding Road Trip in Costa Rica - 9 Days

If you're the kind of traveler who likes to combine tropical R&R with unforgettable wildlife excursions, then Costa Rica is for you. This nine-day adventure allows you to view many of the nation's some 850 species of exotic birds, which includes colorful toucans, macaws, and hummingbirds. So grab your binoculars because you're off to the rainforests, mountains, and valleys of one of the most beautiful countries in the world.

Take the family to Costa Rica for fun on the beach (photo courtesy of Adrian Eriksson)
Map of Costa Rica for Families: Outdoor Adventures & Wildlife - 9 Days
Costa Rica for Families: Outdoor Adventures & Wildlife - 9 Days

Designed for families and perfect for outdoor enthusiasts, this 9-day adventure takes you to many of Costa Rica's most beautiful natural landscapes, including Arenal Volcano, the Monteverde Cloud Forest, and Manuel Antonio National Park. This action-packed trip also takes you off the beaten path to the Santa Elena Cloud Forest Reserve—a haven for wildlife viewing—and the spectacular Isla del Caño Biological Reserve, where you'll dive or snorkel in a colorful underwater ecosystem.

Take a dip with the kids in the jungle
Map of Family Adventure in Costa Rica: Wetlands, Volcanoes & Caribbean Beaches - 9 Days
Family Adventure in Costa Rica: Wetlands, Volcanoes & Caribbean Beaches - 9 Days

This family-friendly tour introduces travelers to a diverse range of Costa Rican landscapes, from white sand Caribbean beaches to smoking volcanoes and quiet estuaries teeming with wildlife. Base yourself in three different locations—Tortuguero National Park, Puerto Viejo de Talamanca, and Arenal—as you explore wildlife habitats, soak in hot springs, and hike around volcanoes. You'll also visit a jaguar rehabilitation center, observe the jungle after dark during a guided night hike, and trek to waterfalls for a refreshing dip.

Siblings paint themselves in mud from a Costa Rican hot spring
Map of Costa Rica Family Trip: Volcanoes, Waterfalls & Coral Reefs - 9 Days
Costa Rica Family Trip: Volcanoes, Waterfalls & Coral Reefs - 9 Days

From the heights of smoking volcanoes to the depths of a coral reef, this exciting 9-day tour leads the whole family around Costa Rica's most spectacular natural attractions. While exploring Rincón de la Vieja National Park, the Gulf of Papagayo, and the beautiful beaches of Sámara, you'll have plenty of opportunities to hike in the rainforest, splash in waterfalls, soak in hot springs, spot monkeys in the wild, and snorkel with tropical fish.

Take the kids to the beach to surf
Map of Active Family Adventure in Costa Rica - 9 Days
Active Family Adventure in Costa Rica - 9 Days

Look for snakes in the jungle during a nighttime tour, whale-watch on a boat excursion, and spot slow-moving sloths in the trees on this kid-friendly 9-day adventure! The itinerary leads you through several of Costa Rica's most beautiful natural areas, including Arenal Volcano and La Fortuna Waterfall, the surf hub of Tamarindo, and the gorgeous beaches of Sámara. With swimming, snorkeling, hiking, wildlife viewing, and boating all on the agenda, this active tour has something for all ages.

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