19243
Costa Rica
Rim to Shore: Costa Rica Multi-Sport Adventure
Come discover the meaning of “Pura Vida” and see why there’s no better place to raft, hike, kayak and learn authentic Latin dance than the protected waters and lands of Costa Rica.
Rating (5)
Program No. 19243RJ
Length
11 days
Starts at
2,299
Special Offer
Click on Dates & Prices below to see special offer details.
Flights start at
455
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11 days
10 nights
29 meals
10 B 9 L 10 D
DAY
1
In Transit to Program, Arrive San José, Orientation
San José
D
Hotel Rincon del Valle

Activity note: Participants must book flights that arrive into San José, Costa Rica no later than 4:30 p.m. on this day if they plan on attending the program orientation. Some Road Scholar gateways require the use of overnight flights in order to get participants to San José by the suggested time. Please contact your Road Scholar program provider at 1-800-866-7111 or roadscholarprograms@holbrooktravel.com if you would like to make arrangements to arrive in Costa Rica a day or more before your program.

Afternoon: Upon arriving at the hotel, check in and get your room assignment. Then take some time to freshen up and relax before our Orientation session. Orientation: 6:00 p.m. The Group Leader will greet everyone with a warm welcome and lead introductions. We will review the up-to-date program schedule and any changes, discuss roles and responsibilities, logistics, safety guidelines, emergency procedures, and answer any questions you may have. This program includes a number of bus transfers. The air-conditioned Road Scholar bus does not have a bathroom on board. However, the program includes stops for program activities, meals, and/or basic pit stops that help to break up longer travel times. Stops are built into the schedule for every 1.5 - 2 hours of bus travel. Free time is reserved for your personal independent exploration. Please note that program activities, schedules, and personnel may need to change due to local circumstances. In the event of changes, we will alert you as quickly as possible. Thank you for your understanding.

Dinner: Welcome Dinner at the hotel with a glass of wine or beer, juice, water; other beverages available for purchase.

Evening: At leisure. Prepare for check out and transfer in the morning.

DAY
2
Transfer to Turrialba area, La Marta Wildlife Reserve
Turrialba
B,L,D
Guayabo Lodge

Activity note: The drive from San Jose to Turrialba area is about 44 miles, approximately 2.5 hours. Walking up to 3 miles today, approximately 2.5 hours.

Breakfast: At the hotel, choose what you like from the breakfast buffet that also includes juice, coffee, tea, water; other beverages available for purchase.

Morning: After checking out of the hotel, we will board the bus and transfer to the Turrialba area via Cachi and Tucurrique. On the way we will visit La Marta Wildlife Refuge. La Marta is situated on more than 3751 acres of land. It is part of the Biosphere Reserve of Friendship, considered by UNESCO a World Heritage Site, and is the first private refuge for wildlife in the country. Approximately 60% of the territory is comprised of primary forest, and the remaining 40% is covered by secondary forest in different stages of natural regeneration. The topography of the Talamanca mountain range, together with the presence of two rivers in the area (Gato and La Marta rivers) and the altitudinal range, in which the Refuge is located, generate a wide variety of habitats that allow the presence of large number of animals and plants. The Refuge shelters both resident and migratory species. During our visit we will walk along trails bordering rivers and going through the ruins of the old settlement with an old carbide mine, coffee and sugar cane operations. After our hike, we’ll enjoy a typical lunch at the site.

Lunch: At La Marta Wildlife Refuge

Afternoon: We board the bus and continue transferring to the hotel. Upon arrival, we will check-in and we’ll have some time to freshen up and relax. Before dinner, we will gather for a presentation by a local expert.

Dinner: At the lodge

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
3
Tropical Research and Educational Center, Hacienda Sitio
Turrialba
B,L,D
Guayabo Lodge

Activity note: Before breakfast, early morning birding around the hotel grounds. Walking approximately 3 miles throughout the day over trails of grass and dirt. Driving about 36 miles, approximately 2 hours throughout the day.

Breakfast: At the lodge

Morning: We’ll transfer by bus to the Tropical Agronomic Research and Educational Center (CATIE) for a guided botanical garden visit with site lecture by a local guide. CATIE is a regional center dedicated to research and graduate education in agriculture, management, conservation and sustainable use of natural resources. Afterwards we’ll walk to the cafeteria on the main campus.

Lunch: At CATIE’s cafeteria.

Afternoon: This afternoon we’ll visit Hacienda Sitio de Mata to enjoy sugar cane and macadamia demonstrations. With plenty of information and incredible views, this is the perfect little spot to learn, relax, have some coffee, snacks and take photos before returning to the lodge after a day of activity outside. Back at the lodge have some time to freshen up. Before dinner we’ll have a presentation of Historical Development of Turrialba area.

Dinner: At the lodge.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
4
Guayabo National Monument, River Trail Walk
Turrialba
B,L,D
Guayabo Lodge

Activity note: Driving about 12 miles, approximately 1 hour through the day. Walking on trails of dirt and grass for about 2.5 miles, approximately 3 hours throughout the day.

Breakfast: At the lodge.

Morning: After breakfast we’ll transfer by bus to Guayabo National Monument. This is the site of an ancient ruin which sits on the southern slope of the Turrialba Volcano. The settlement was built in 1000 BC and continuously occupied until 1400 AD when it was mysteriously abandoned. The Guayabo Monument is believed to have been an important political, cultural and ceremonial center during the Pre-Columbian time in Costa Rica. Our Group Leader will guide us as we walk through the Monument. In addition to enjoying some good outdoors exercise, this will be an opportunity to learn many secrets about this special place.

Lunch: Picnic lunch at Guayabo Monument.

Afternoon: We will board the bus and return to the hotel. With our Group Leader, we’ll head out for a walk on the lodge grounds. We'll follow a trail that winds along the river. This is a scenic trail that passes by a waterfall, make sure to bring your camera. We’ll return to the lodge with time to freshen up and relax before dinner.

Dinner: At the lodge.

Evening: At leisure. Prepare for check-out and transfer in the morning.

DAY
5
Transfer to Sarapiqui, White Water Rafting, Latin Dancing
Sarapiqui
B,L,D
Selva Verde Lodge

Activity note: Rafting Class I and II whitewater rapids. (Class I: Moving water with a few riffles and small waves; few or no obstructions. Class II: Easy rapids with smaller waves, clear channels that are obvious without scouting; some maneuvering required. This classification system is only a guide; degrees of difficulty vary based on local conditions including water levels. Sturdy water shoes required; no flip-flops. Driving about 90 miles, approximately 3 hours throughout the day.

Breakfast: At the lodge.

Morning: Checking out of the hotel, we’ll transfer by bus from Turrialba to Sarapiquí in the Chilamate Valley, an area with one of the highest degrees of biodiversity in Costa Rica. A number of forests serve as migratory corridors for the more than 400 different species of birds that have been recorded in the area. Sarapiqui’s economy is based on eco-tourism, scientific research, small-scale ranching, and large pineapple and banana plantations. On the way to Sarapiqui we’ll stop for our whitewater rafting field trip at the Pacuare River. The Pacuare River is one of the world’s top whitewater river rafting adventures. The Pacuare flows down a long gorge and canyon through primary and secondary rainforest of the Talamanca Mountains. When rafting down the river, you have the feeling of being completely isolated in a lost world. Waterfalls pour in from high rock walls, brightly colored toucans and electric blue Morpho butterflies fly by, and sometimes the chirping cicadas are so loud you can’t hear anything else.

Lunch: At a local restaurant en route.

Afternoon: Continue our transfer to Sarapiqui. Upon arrival, we’ll check in to the lodge with some time to freshen up and relax.

Dinner: At the lodge, the dinner buffet includes juice and water; other beverages available for purchase.

Evening: Latin dancing is recognized as an exemplary form of cardio exercise. Laugh, dance and socialize while learning the basics during a Latin dance class.

DAY
6
Rainforest Hiking, El Ganador, Kayaking at Pto. Viejo River
Sarapiqui
B,L,D
Selva Verde Lodge

Activity note: Hiking up to 2 miles, approximately 3 hours; uneven, unpaved trails. Wear sturdy, closed toe, hiking shoes. Hiking poles are recommended. Getting in/out of kayaks. Sturdy water shoes required; no flip-flops.

Breakfast: At the lodge, the breakfast buffet includes juice, tea, coffee, water; other beverages available for purchase.

Morning: We’ll hike into the heart of the rainforest and pay homage to El Ganador — Spanish for “winner” — a giant almond tree that towers above the canopy. When the Spanish arrived in the late 1440s, it was already mature. El Ganador is enormous, standing 117 feet (54 meters) high and 46 feet (14 meters) in circumference. A keystone species, the Almendro tree (Dipteryx panamensis) is a critical part of the endangered Great Green Macaw’s habitat. The life span for this award-winning tree is estimated to be another one or two centuries. What life secrets would you ask a 600-year-old tree that is still standing strong?

Lunch: At the lodge.

Afternoon: We’ll meet by reception and board a bus that will take us to the Puerto Viejo River for our kayaking adventure. After a safety lesson by a local expert we’ll get into our kayaks. We’ll take a few minutes to familiarize ourselves with the kayaks, paddling around near shore, before setting out along the waterways of Sarapiqui River. This activity optimizes our opportunities to view wildlife in their natural habitat with minimum disturbance to the environment. Keep your eyes open for birds, monkeys, lizards, and more. At the conclusion of the activity, we’ll return to the starting point, disembark the kayaks and return to the lodge by bus. Upon arrival, we’ll take time to freshen up and relax. Before dinner, we’ll have a presentation by a tropical biologist on the Mesoamerican Biological Corridor.

Dinner: At the lodge.

Evening: At leisure. Prepare for check-out and transfer in the morning.

DAY
7
Transfer to Punta Leona
Punta Leona
B,L,D
Hotel Punta Leona

Activity note: The drive to Punta Leona is about 114 miles, approximately 3.5 – 4 hours.

Breakfast: At the lodge.

Morning: We’ll wake up our muscles and delight our senses on a walk around the grounds at Selva Verde as our Group Leader points out exotic plants and wildlife. We’ll then check out and begin our transfer — from the Caribbean lowlands to the Pacific Coast — on to Punta Leona. We’ll have a stop along the way to stretch our legs.

Lunch: En route at the home of a “Tica,” or local. We will have a meal and listen to a lecture on the History of Costa Rica

Afternoon: Continuing our transfer, we’ll arrive at Punta Leona, a resort incorporating coastal jungle and two Pacific coast beaches. After checking in, we’ll have an orientation to the resort, with the remainder of the afternoon free. You might like to stroll on the beach or take a dip in one of the swimming pools.

Dinner: At the hotel. Buffet plus juice, water; other beverages available for purchase.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
8
Sea Kayak & Outrigger Canoe Paddling, Tarcoles River Boating
Punta Leona
B,L,D
Hotel Punta Leona

Activity note: The drive is approximately 40 minutes each way. Short walk to beach to board canoes; paddling.

Breakfast: At the hotel.

Morning: For our next field trip, we’ll ride to the small coastal village of Agujas for a sea kayak and outrigger canoe paddling field trip. Kayaks and canoes have been helping people of the word traverse waterways for centuries. They have been tools of transportation, recreation, and survival! Though canoes and kayaks are now built of fiberglass instead of wood, the design has undergone few modifications through the years. As we dip our paddles into the water, we are creating a link from our modern world to the ancient one. We’ll return to the hotel after our picnic lunch at the beach.

Lunch: Picnic lunch at the beach. Variety of sandwiches plus dessert. Water, juice and tea included.

Afternoon: Next, we’ll take a boating field trip on the Tarcoles River with our Group Leader assisted by the boat captain. The Tarcoles River basin empties the entire western side of the Central Valley in the Pacific coastal region. It includes an area of mangrove swamps and an estuary that create a rich habitat for wildlife. We’ll be on the lookout for residents including crocodiles (Crocodilus acutus), often seen sunning themselves on the muddy river banks. Returning to the hotel, we will freshen up and then before dinner we will attend a lecture on Conservation & Development of the Central Pacific Region.

Dinner: At the hotel.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
9
Canopy Zipline, Free Time
Punta Leona
B,L,D
Hotel Punta Leona

Activity note: The drive to Herradura is approximately 45 minutes each way. Zipline introduction and safety talk conducted by local experts; safety gear provided; shoes with a closed heel/toe required.

Breakfast: At the hotel, the breakfast buffet includes juice, coffee, tea, water.

Morning: We’ll take a field trip to the Vista Los Sueños Canopy amid 80 acres of lushly forested lands in Herradura, next to Jaco Beach on the Central Pacific Coast of Costa Rica. Bilingual experts will explain safety procedures and instructions. We’ll then whiz along a zipline through the forest canopy with remarkable views of the surrounding area as well as birds and other wildlife that may be present.

Lunch: At the hotel, the lunch buffet includes juice, coffee, tea, water; other beverages available for purchase.

Afternoon: Free Time. The resort’s 750 acres include a wildlife reserve hosting hundreds of indigenous flora and fauna species, and two beaches, one white sand and the other with gray. They are the only beaches in Costa Rica with 3 Blue Flags & Triple A Rating for their water quality, cleanliness, and level of safety for swimmers.

Dinner: At the hotel.

Evening: At leisure. Prepare for check-out and transfer after lunch tomorrow.

DAY
10
Carara National Park, Transfer to San José, Farewell Dinner
San José
B,L,D
Wyndham San Jose Herradura Hotel & Convention Center

Activity note: The drive to Carara is about 1/2 hour each way; hiking approximately 2 miles; relatively level paved and unpaved trails; high temperatures and humidity. The drive to San José is about 66 miles, approximately 2 – 2.5 hours.

Breakfast: At the hotel.

Morning: We’ll bus to Carara National Park. This land protects primary and secondary transitional rainforest habitats as well as aquatic habitats. Carara Park is also the last natural nesting site for the endangered Scarlet Macaw. As it is connected with some of the forested mountains and hillsides on the Western Slope of Talamanca Range, the Carara area is an important biological corridor for many of the species that seasonally move from the lowlands to the highlands and vice-versa. We’ll learn about the transitional forest then begin our walking field trip with stops at key spots for natural history interpretation of the ecology and other forest dynamics. We’ll also stop if/when there are opportunities for wildlife sightings. We’ll return to the hotel to freshen up and check out before lunch.

Lunch: At the hotel.

Afternoon: We’ll begin our transfer to San José. Upon arrival, we’ll check into our hotel with time to freshen up and relax before dinner.

Dinner: At the hotel, we’ll have a farewell dinner with a glass of wine or beer, juice, water; other beverages available for purchase. Share your favorite experiences with new Road Scholar friends.

Evening: At leisure. Say farewells, finish packing for departure in the morning, and get a good night's rest for the day ahead.

DAY
11
Program Concludes
In Flight
B

Activity note: Hotel check-out by 12:00 Noon. Participants with independent travel arrangements and/or scheduled on later flights can keep their hotel rooms until check-out time on this day. Except for breakfast, all other meals are on your own on this day. See your program’s travel details regarding transfers. If you are an independent traveler (POP status), see “Ground Transportation to First Location.”

Breakfast: At the hotel depending on flight departure time. This concludes our program.

Morning: If you are returning home, safe travels. If you are staying on independently, have a wonderful time. If you are transferring to another Road Scholar program, detailed instructions are included in your Information Packet for that program. We hope you enjoy Road Scholar learning adventures and look forward to having you on rewarding programs in the future. Please join our Facebook page and share photos of your program. Visit us at www.facebook.com/rsadventures. Best wishes for all your journeys!






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