Cornerstones of Costa Rica

8 days from $2,688 per person*
  • Explore the rich wildlife haven of Parque Nacional Manuel Antonio with a private guide.
  • Walk the hanging bridges of Arenal and spot animals under the rainforest canopy.
  • Hike to the base of Arenal Volcano with a private guide.
  • Raft Class II and III rapids on the Balsa River.
  • Stay at a handpicked selection of quality accommodations.
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From the enveloping rainforests, raging rivers, and mist-shrouded volcanoes, there’s an exotic vivacious energy that infuses all aspects of life in Central America’s adventure capital. The locals express it in a phrase that’s shorthand for anything and everything: pura vida (“pure life”). This trip gives you the purest, 100% unfiltered pura vida you’ll find anywhere.

In the lush jungle environs of Arenal, you’ll take a guided private walk through the Hanging Bridges of Arenal, home to a dazzling 10,170-foot (3,100-meter) network of elevated walkways that provide unbelievable views and the chance to spot howler monkeys and exotic birds in their natural habitat before slipping into the invigorating thermal waters at your resort. Later, climb into a whitewater raft and brave the rushing Class II and III rapids of the Balsa River on a thrilling three-hour ride. Next, head deep into Arenal’s magical rainforest on a privately guided hike to the base of the region’s namesake volcano, keeping an eye peeled for monkeys, toucans, coatimundi, and other creatures along the way. On the way to picturesque Parque Nacional Manuel Antonio, you’ll embark on a brief cruise in search of iguanas, basilisks (nicknamed the “Jesus Christ lizard” for its ability to spring across the surface of the water), and the star attraction: crocodiles as long as 15 feet (4.5 meters)! Elsewhere in Manuel Antonio, you’ll have the chance to wander the trails or stretch out on the beach and hang out with curious monkeys before devoting an entire day swimming, snorkeling, kayaking, and lounging about at the comfortable confines of a four-star rainforest retreat. ... Show More »

Kensington Tours creates private trips from the world’s finest ingredients. Tailor-made with care by your personal Destination Expert, your personalized trip is always a one-of-a-kind experience made just for you. Expert local guidance and 24/7 service come standard. « Show Less

Day
Activities Hotel & Meals
Hotel & Meals
  • Day 1 San José to Arenal
    San José to Arenal
    • Meet & Greet Airport Service - Local Representative
    • Costa Rica - Welcome Package
    • Private Transfer - San José - Arenal [3 hrs] - Vehicle/Driver
    Arenal Springs Resort (B) (Junior Suite )
  • Day 2 Arenal
    Arenal
    • Private Tour - 1/2 Day Hanging Bridges (3.5 hrs) - Vehicle/Guide/Driver
    • Natural Hot Springs - Arenal Springs Resort
    Arenal Springs Resort (B) (Junior Suite )
  • Day 3 Arenal
    Arenal
    • Shared Tour - Balsa River Rafting Class II & III Rapids (with Lunch, 5-6 hrs) - Vehicle/Guide/Driver
    Arenal Springs Resort (B) (Junior Suite )
  • Day 4 Arenal
    Arenal
    • Private Tour - Volcano Hike & Tabacon Springs (with Dinner, 5-6 hrs) - Vehicle/Guide/Driver
    Arenal Springs Resort (B) (Junior Suite )
  • Day 5 Arenal to Manuel Antonio
    Arenal to Manuel Antonio
    • Private Transfer - Arenal - Manuel Antonio [with Crocodile Boat Tour (with Lunch) (7 hrs)] - Vehicle/Guide/Driver
  • Day 6 Manuel Antonio
    Manuel Antonio
    • Private Tour - 1/2 Day Manuel Antonio National Park Tour (3 hrs) - Vehicle/Guide/Driver
  • Day 7 Manuel Antonio
    Manuel Antonio
    • Parador Resort & Spa at Leisure
  • Day 8 Manuel Antonio to San José
    Manuel Antonio to San José
    • Private Transfer - Manuel Antonio - San José [ Airport - 3 hrs] - Vehicle/Driver
    • Airport Departure Tax (not included)
We can customize this private tour just for you. Any element can be tailored – activities, length, hotels and destinations.
Call us at 1 888 903-2001 or request a quote.
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Day 1: San José - Arenal

For your added comfort, you will have an English-speaking assistant waiting for you outside of customs with a sign with your name on it. Your representative will guide you to your luggage pickup and will provide an ID sticker in meeting up with your private driver.

A welcome package with your vouchers, a country map, and any other touristic information that we deem you may find useful will be waiting for you upon your arrival at your first hotel on your trip.

You will be warmly greeted by the driver of your private vehicle for this transfer to Arenal. The approximate travel time is 3 hours.

Accommodation: Arenal Springs Resort (B) (Junior Suite )

The Arenal Springs Hotel provides guests with a harmonious combination of relaxation and comfort in a truly surreal and picturesque tropical setting. The hotel features colonial style rooms with all the modern amenities one would expect from a luxurious retreat. The rooms feature vaulted ceilings and large bay windows, as well as a spacious private bathroom with a garden-style shower. Arenal Springs Hotel is located just 5 miles away from the town of La Fortuna on the way towards the Arenal Volcano National Park. Marvel at the outstandingly green, and fertile natural beauty that surrounds you and one of the most active volcanoes in the world, the Arenal Volcano.

Cornerstones of Costa Rica Tours 2018 - 2019 -  The Arenal Volcano
The Arenal Volcano
Cornerstones of Costa Rica Tours 2018 - 2019 -  Arenal Springs Resort
Arenal Springs Resort

Day 2: Arenal

Prepare for an exciting outing as you explore the jungles of Arenal on a private guided tour atop the famed Hanging Bridges. This weaving system of hanging bridges allows visitors to explore the upper and lower canopies of this amazing area. The bridge system is supported by concrete bricks providing stability when used. This system stretches across an area of 3100 meters through a dense jungle area surround the Arenal mountainous sub-forest. A variety of wildlife can be seen whilst walking about on this dynamic bridge system including howler monkeys, and a plethora of exotic birds. For your convenience, morning or afternoon departures are available. The tour will span approximately three and a half fun-filled hours. What to bring: comfortable shoes, camera, binoculars, sunscreen, insect repellent, and a breathable jacket.

Take some time to soak in the deeply relaxing hot springs at Arenal Springs Resort. A highlight of any trip to Costa Rica, the invigorating thermal waters are the ideal place to unwind, perhaps with a drink in hand. Strategically placed to ensure a continual flow of warm water and to capitalize on the jungles unique and exotic ambience, time at leisure to unwind in the springs is highly recommended.

Accommodation: Arenal Springs Resort (B) (Junior Suite )
Cornerstones of Costa Rica Tours 2018 - 2019 -  Hanging Bridges
Hanging Bridges
Cornerstones of Costa Rica Tours 2018 - 2019 -  Thermal Pool at Arenal Springs Resort
Thermal Pool at Arenal Springs Resort

Day 3: Arenal

After a hotel pick-up, transfer to the starting point of this thrilling white water adventure featuring class II and III rapids alongside expert river guides and like-minded rafting enthusiasts. Discuss rafting responsibilities and paddle commands during a safety orientation and then feel the grip of adrenaline as you race down the Balsa San Carlos River to battle the currents for two to three exhilarating hours, navigating rapids including the Magnetic Rock and the Dredges. Halfway through the excursion, take a break on the river banks to enjoy both the beautiful tropical setting and a light snack before carrying on through the torrents. Upon completion of the circuit you will change into dry clothes, and then head to a nearby estate to enjoy a tasty Costa Rican lunch and recount your days adventure with fellow rafters. Following lunch, you will be returned to your hotel. Please be sure to wear easy dry clothes, a bathing suit and secure shoes (sport sandals or water shoes are recommended) and to bring a spare set of clothes to change into after the adventure. 

Accommodation: Arenal Springs Resort (B) (Junior Suite )
Cornerstones of Costa Rica Tours 2018 - 2019 -  Balsa River Rafting
Balsa River Rafting

Day 4: Arenal

After being picked up from your hotel and transferred to the Arenal Volcano, make your way through the awe-inspiring rainforest at the foot of this active giant on an easy, serene hike accompanied by your naturalist guide. Trace along the base of the volcano as your guide assists in spotting wildlife and explains the history of Costa Rica’s northern lowlands. Thought long extinct, Arenal Volcano rested silently for at least four centuries – from 1500-1900 CE – before its violent eruption in 1968 which ushered in an era of pyroclastic activity that lasted four decades. Today the volcano is quiet, and as you explore the surrounding trails you are likely to encounter monkeys, toucans, coatimundi and an incredible variety of bird species that call the area home. At the end of the hike, enjoy the view from a lovely vista, complimented an ice cold beverage. Finish off the tour in relaxing fashion at Tabacon Springs where you'll settle in for dinner at Ave del Paraiso, and enjoy a dip in the resorts natural hot springs (be sure to bring a bathing suit!). After dinner and relaxing in the springs, you will be returned to your hotel.

Accommodation: Arenal Springs Resort (B) (Junior Suite )
Cornerstones of Costa Rica Tours 2018 - 2019 -  Arenal Volcano
Arenal Volcano

Day 5: Arenal - Manuel Antonio

Your driver & guide will meet you at your hotel to transfer to the Central Pacific coast of Costa Rica. At about the half way point, you will stop for a private guided Crocodile Boat Tour. The adventure takes place on the Tárcoles River, one of 4 rivers flowing out into the Nicoya Peninsula, and home to one of the world’s largest crocodile populations in the wild with individuals measuring up to 15ft long. In addition to the crocodiles, over 50 different kinds of birds can be seen on site, including the very rare scarlet macaw and a great variety of resident and migrant waterfowl. Iguanas and Jesus Christ lizards are very common as well.

The Jungle Crocodile Safari tour time is 1.5 hours in length. You will head down river as the boat heads along the Estero Guacalillo, a beautiful mangrove ecosystem that features four different species of mangrove trees. Enjoy a local buffet lunch after the boat tour.

Includes: Private transportation with bilingual guide, entrance, tour to Tarcoles River and Lunch.

Accommodation: Parador Resort & Spa

Parador Resort & Spa is the only full-service resort located in Manuel Antonio. Parador Resort has earned a number of prestigious awards not only for it's world-class service and a­­menities, but also for the passionate commitment to both the environment and the community. Parador Resort & Spa is an oasis of calm with soaring views surrounded by lush rainforest, where you’ll spend your Costa Rica vacation blissfully isolated from the hustle and bustle of the main drag, but just minutes from Manuel Antonio National Park, miles of white sand beaches, restaurants, the local airport and the village of Quepos.

Cornerstones of Costa Rica Tours 2018 - 2019 -  Boat Tour
Boat Tour
Cornerstones of Costa Rica Tours 2018 - 2019 -  Manuel Antonio Beach
Manuel Antonio Beach

Day 6: Manuel Antonio

After being warmly greeted in the morning by your driver, you will be transferred to Manuel Antonio National Park to begin a privately-guided tour of this incredible reserve. Get ready to relax on beaches with troops of monkeys that frequent the area. The park consists of mangrove swamps, rainforests and marshy woodlands and is bordered by the clear waters of the Pacific Ocean. It is a haven for over 100 mammal species including the highly endangered squirrel monkey, or "mono titi". For your convenience, morning or afternoon departures are available. The tour will span approximately three fun-filled hours and a return transfer to the hotel is provided at the conclusion of the tour.

Please note: If you would like to stay within the park, on your own, to enjoy the trails and/or beaches please ensure you bring cash with you to take a return taxi to the hotel later in the day.

Accommodation: Parador Resort & Spa
Cornerstones of Costa Rica Tours 2018 - 2019 -

Day 7: Manuel Antonio

There is no shortage of fun-filled activities to fill your day (or night) at Parador Resort & Spa. With three fantastic pools on the property - each overlooking the turquoise Pacific Ocean - you'll find the right one for you. The first is family friendly and features a swim-up bar and terrace while the other two are adults-only. A short walk from the resort is a small beach, Playa Biesanz, while a ten minute shuttle from the resort takes you to the miles-long beaches of Manuel Antonio which afford more privacy while swimming or sunbathing. As well, the resort is able to offer guests use of kayaks and snorkel gear (at additional cost, paid for on-site).

Accommodation: Parador Resort & Spa
Cornerstones of Costa Rica Tours 2018 - 2019 -  Beaches near Parador Resort & Spa
Beaches near Parador Resort & Spa

Day 8: Manuel Antonio - San José

A privately driven vehicle will provide you with a transfer from Manuel Antonio to San José Airport today. The approximately travel time is three hours.

An airport departure tax of $29 USD per person must be paid at the San Jose International airport after check- in. This is not included in the cost of your tour and is to be paid locally (subject to change at anytime without notice).

Accommodation: Depart (Int`l Airport) (standard)

Depart from International Airport. End of itinerary.

We can customize this private tour just for you. Any element can be tailored – activities, length, hotels and destinations.
Call us at 1 888 903-2001 or request a quote.

Trip Terms & Conditions

  • Your deposit is due immediately on booking (30% of program price, minimum $350). The balance is due 90 days prior to departure.
  • Cancellations of confirmed bookings 90 days or more prior to departure will receive full refund minus a $350 (per person) administrative fee and any non-refundable paid fees (e.g. non-refundable airfare, cruise or hotel deposits). 60-89 days will be subject to loss of 30% of program price. 30-59 days will be subject to loss of 50% of program price. 29 days or less will be subject to loss of 100% of program price.
  • Tour quotes do not include airfare to/from the trip start point unless noted on the itinerary
  • Cost increases in currency exchange, government fees, taxes, surcharges or hotel/lodge tariff increases between quote date and start date are payable by the client.
  • Availability cannot be guaranteed until booked. We will exercise best efforts to book hotels per the itinerary, however, in busy seasons and with client bookings made within 90 days of tour date we may be forced to offer substitutes.
  • Payment of the program price constitutes your acceptance of the terms and conditions set out at www.kensingtontours.com/terms-and-conditions
  • Living Standards and practices at destination may differ from those in North America with respect to provisions of utilities, services and accommodation.

Arenal Springs Resort (B) (Junior Suite ): Arenal

The Arenal Springs Hotel provides guests with a harmonious combination of relaxation and comfort in a truly surreal and picturesque tropical setting. The hotel features colonial style rooms with all the modern amenities one would expect from a luxurious retreat. The rooms feature vaulted ceilings and large bay windows, as well as a spacious private bathroom with a garden-style shower. Arenal Springs Hotel is located just 5 miles away from the town of La Fortuna on the way towards the Arenal Volcano National Park. Marvel at the outstandingly green, and fertile natural beauty that surrounds you and one of the most active volcanoes in the world, the Arenal Volcano.

Parador Resort & Spa: Manuel Antonio

Parador Resort & Spa is the only full-service resort located in Manuel Antonio. Parador Resort has earned a number of prestigious awards not only for it's world-class service and a­­menities, but also for the passionate commitment to both the environment and the community. Parador Resort & Spa is an oasis of calm with soaring views surrounded by lush rainforest, where you’ll spend your Costa Rica vacation blissfully isolated from the hustle and bustle of the main drag, but just minutes from Manuel Antonio National Park, miles of white sand beaches, restaurants, the local airport and the village of Quepos.

Cornerstones of Costa Rica Tours 2018 - 2019 -  Parador Resort and Spa
Parador Resort and Spa

Depart (Int`l Airport) (standard): Global Location

Depart from International Airport. End of itinerary.

We can customize this private tour just for you. Any element can be tailored – activities, length, hotels and destinations.
Call us at 1 888 903-2001 or request a quote.
We can customize this private tour just for you. Any element can be tailored – activities, length, hotels and destinations.
Call us at 1 888 903-2001 or request a quote.
  • Beth D. — May 22, 2018 — Central America

    Our Trip to Costa Rica couldn't have been more perfect! Everything and everyone was on time and ran smoothly. We will definitely use Kensington Tours again!

  • Robert H. — April 07, 2018 — Central America

    A superb trip from beginning to end. All of our guides were were on time and thoroughly knowledgeable. Everything flowed smoothly.

  • Karen P. — March 10, 2018 — Central America

    Best trip ever! Everything was coordinated so well and thee excursions were awesome. Our drivers were not only polite but educational. Our accommodations fit our family perfectly and our consultant was outstanding.

  • Robert Z — November 07, 2017 — Central America

    Sarah Roberts was fantastic, very available and responsive. Drivers and guides were all top rated, knowledgeable, friendly, and patient. The Springs hotel in La Fortunate was great!

  • Natalie D — November 07, 2017 — Central America

    The trip was amazing. The itinerary worked out great. Kensington has always made an effort to have a representative meet with us upon arrival and go over the itinerary and discuss any matters we had questions about.Fabian was a very nice man and was attentive after our meeting. Our primary driver was Javier who was always pleasant and a joy to be with. Our primary guide was Marcos Jimenez. He was an excellent ambassador for Kensington and represented you very well. He was the consummate professional and was always very attentive and accommodating with us. In its entirety, Kensington organized a great trip that I would recommend to anyone. Thank you again for all of your help in planning this adventure.

  • Angela C — November 07, 2017 — Central America

    We were lucky to have Victor as our guide in Arenal. He was fantastic. We learned so much from him. His enthusiasm was contagious.

  • Jean V — November 07, 2017 — Central America

    Brandi Merchant is fantastic!!!! Her patience with my many questions and attention to detail, coupled with her warm, personable manner is just the best!

  • Cecelia B — November 07, 2017 — Central America

    The experience exceeded my already high expectations. The guides were excellent: personable, knowledgeable, helpful, and fun to be with.

  • Robert Riordan — May 23, 2017 — Central America

    The guides were key. Very knowledgeable and fun. They were very attuned to the level of exertion we could handle. Thanks to your eagle-eyed guides, we saw such a diversity of plants, birds and animals -- which we could never have spotted on our own. Great memories!

  • Angela Watson — May 23, 2017 — Central America

    We had a wonderful time on our trip to Costa Rica. Our guides Francisco and Bernie both exceeded our expectations. They were able to answer any question we had on subjects that ranged from culture and customs to environment, ecology and much more. During our afternoons in the rainforest we were able to see a multitude of birds, two toed and three toed sloths, Congo and Capuchin monkeys, eyelash vipers, and all of the rainforest scenery. We came away with an understanding of the forest and its inhabitants and real respect for our guides who work hard to preserve the natural beauty of their country through preservation and ensuring responsible tourism. We couldn't be happier with any portion of our trip. It really was wonderful.

We can customize this private tour just for you. Any element can be tailored – activities, length, hotels and destinations.
Call us at 1 888 903-2001 or request a quote.

* USD per person, double occupancy. Custom designed personal tour. Prices subject to change.

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