Volcanoes, forests and lakes – see the best Nicaragua and Costa Rica has to offer
Whether it’s the twin volcanoes reflected in the water of Lake Nicaragua, the smell of rich morning coffee in the streets of San Jose, or exploring the misty canopies of Monteverde's cloud forests – there’s an unmistakeable allure to Nicaragua and Costa Rica. Discover this enticing pocket of Central America on an adventure where you can do as much or as little as you like. Grab a mountain bike and tackle the hills of Monteverde, swing through the trees on a zip-line, or simply soak in thermal springs heated by the impressive Arenal Volcano. Hedged in by sprawling forests filled with plenty of exotic wildlife, this is the greatest playground on Earth.
Discover Central America, a land of active volcanoes, idyllic lakes and emerald jungles.
Volcanoes, wildlife-rich rainforest, stunning beaches and ancient rock carvings - Ometepe Island has it all. You'll have plenty of free time to explore the island, which is set into beautiful Lake Nicaragua.
Hike, cycle or zip-line through the steamy cloud forests of Monteverde in Costa Rica. Get up close to nature among the hundreds of mammal, bird and plant species that call this place home.
Encounter Costa Rica's famous Arenal Volcano in La Fortuna. Whether it's reflecting back at you in the lake or heating the thermal pools you're stewing away in, the magnificent volcano always makes its presence felt.
Central America is tropical, so expect a hot and humid climate. Make sure you protect yourself from the sun, wear comfortable, light clothing and stay hydrated - especially when out on walking tours.
There are many opportunities to get active on this adventure. Some of the optional activities, especially the volcano hikes, require a moderate level of fitness and sturdy walking shoes. If you'd prefer to take it easy, however, there are plenty of other things you can do instead.
While border crossings are usually straightforward, please prepare to be patient while local authorities process paperwork.
This itinerary is valid for departures from 01 January 2019 to 31 December 2019. View the itinerary for departures between 01 January 2018 - 31 December 2018
1. Your adventure begins with a welcome meeting at 6pm on Day 1. There are no activities planned for the final day so you may depart at any time.
2. To have a private room on this trip, a single supplement is bookable; subject to availability.
3. Please be careful when booking flights to Granada; make sure you fly into Managua - Augusto C. Sandino International Airport [MGA]. Managua’s Airport is the closest airport to Granada. Please do NOT book flights to Granada Airport [GRX] as this is in Spain.
4. Please be careful when booking flights from San Jose; make sure you fly out of Juan Santamaría International Airport [SJO]. Please do NOT book flights from Norman Y. Mineta San Jose International Airport [SJC] as this is located in California, United States
5. Hurricane season in this region is June to November, when landslides, mudslides, flooding and disruptions to essential services can occur. Intrepid monitors any situations that arise, and may need to change itineraries or activities in response to these natural weather occurrences.
POSSIBLE ITINERARY CHANGE/CANCELLATION – AFFECTING JOINING POINT CITY:
From 01Sep2018 - 31Dec2018, this itinerary was cancelled to avoid the country Nicaragua due to safety concerns. There are ongoing political protests with considerable risk for roadblocks which could interrupt the running of the trip, or worse, jeopardise the safety of our travellers and that of our leaders. We will continue to closely monitor the situation in Nicaragua, however departures in 2019 may also be cancelled if the situation does not improve. Therefore, it is recommended NOT to book flights until we are able to assess the situation in October.
Alternatively, we suggest booking the ‘Costa Rica Experience’ (QVSS) Trip.
Our Nicaragua & Costa Rica trips score an average of 4.25 out of 5 based on 12 reviews in the last year.
This is my first of many with intrepid, I have friends that travel with intrepid often and I definitely plan to use you guys again!
Review submitted 04 May 2018
Great trip for the money. But be prepared to rough it a little. Transportation was not always private and not all the hotels were that good. Overall, great experience.
Review submitted 17 Apr 2018