Cuba to Costa Rica - 15 days
Explore the captivating Cuban UNESCO Listed cities of Havana and Trinidad, go in search of wonderful wildlife, hike in Costa Rica's national parks and learn about the process of making tobacco, rum and coffee on this 15 day tour of Cuba and Costa Rica.
Monday. Welcome to Cuba! You will be met upon arrival at Havana airport and transferred to your hotel. Spend the rest of the afternoon exploring Havana's highlights at your own leisure.
Our morning begins exploring the Old Town of Havana – La Habana Viejain. With over 500 years worth of history to discover we start by walking through the streets of this beautiful UNESCO world heritage site, with a stop at the famous Havana Club Rum Museum for a cocktail. Then continue our tour of Havana’s highlights in one of the famous Oldtimer cars.
Overnight: Havana | Breakfast
Havana – Vinales. After breakfast we drive through Pinar del Rio, a region known for the world's best tobacco, on our way to the lush Vinales Valley. En route we stop to visit a Casa del Veguero (house of a tobacco farmer), where we learn all about the process of farming and making one of the world’s most sought out products.
Our afternoon finds us heading to the "Cueva del Indio" nestled in the national park of Vinales – this is an ancient indigenous cave dwelling surrounded by lamps rediscovered in the 1920’s. We end our day in the small town of Vinales, surrounded by tobacco plantations and unique limestone formations called mogotes.
Overnight: Vinales | Breakfast
Vinales – Cienfuegos. Today we leave green western Cuba behind and head towards Cienfuegos, which is known as the “Pearl of the South". On our journey we stop at the Bay of Pigs - a site well renowned for the failed CIA mission in 1961 and enjoy a scenic boat tour of the Laguna del Tesoro (Treasure Lake), located in the heart of the Zapata Swamp, where we discover the beautiful landscape and abundance of trout who have made this lake their home. As our afternoon activities come to an end you have time at leisure to wander through the beautiful city of Cienfuegos.
Overnight: Cienfuegos | Breakfast, Lunch
Topes de Collantes NP
Cienfuegos - Topes de Collantes NP - Trinidad. This morning we start our day uncovering the delights of El Cubano Park. Located in the Topes de Collantes National Park along the banks of the Guaurabo River, it is the perfect location for adventure and nature lovers alike. Here you can enjoy a swim in the waterfalls and pools and hike along one of the various trails including the “Traces of History” trail which gives an insight to the colonial past of the island. Lunch will be served in a local restaurant before travel on to the enchanting UNESCO Listed city of Trinidad. Here we spend the next two nights staying with local families in casa particulares (homestays), where we can gain a fascinating insight into Cuban life.
Overnight: Trinidad (Casa Particular) | Breakfast, Lunch
This morning we step back in time on a guided walking tour through Cuba’s best preserved colonial city. Once known as the home of the sugar barons, cattle herders and tobacco farmers, this is one of the best places to see colourful colonial homes and extravagant palaces including Palacio Brunet, one of the most beautiful palaces in the city.
In the afternoon we take an excursion to Playa Ancon beach where you can enjoy a swim in the crystal clear Caribbean Sea and relax under palm trees.
Overnight: Trinidad (Casa Particular)
Santa Clara & Havana
Trinidad – Santa Clara - Havana. Today we set our sights on Havana, home of rum and tobacco. On our way we stop at Santa Clara for a visit to the famous Che Guevara Mausoleum, where the newly discovered remains of the revolutionist Che Guevara lay in a great homage to his bravery and courage. After delving into the fascinating local history we will have the rest of our last night in Havana at our own leisure to indulge in the local cuisine and entertainment for one last time.
Havana - San Jose - La Fortuna. Today we bid farewell to Cuba and embark on our discovery of Costa Rica. We transfer to Havana airport for our flight to San Jose. Upon arrival in Costa Rica we will be met by our local guide before continuing our journey to La Fortuna. After checking into our hotel we will have the evening to relax and unwind while we prepare for the beginning of our Costa Rican adventure.
Overnight: La Fortuna | Breakfast
From the small village of La Fortuna we have an amazing view of the Arenal Volcano – one of the many active volcanoes in Costa Rica. As we set out on a three hour hike through the national park surrounding the volcano we will learn about interesting facts about the flora and fauna, discover hot springs and marvel at the breathtaking scenery.
The afternoon is free to explore, discover other hiking trails, take a dip in the natural volcanic springs or even go looking for the Cerro Chato volcano.
Overnight: La Fortuna | Breakfast
La Fortuna - Monteverde. From La Fortuna we make our way to the north-west of Costa Rica to Monteverde. Here we visit El Trapiche, a family run sugar cane mill, where we learn about the farming and processing of not only sugar, but chocolate, coffee and other Costa Rican crops. After sampling some local delicacies and indulging in local life we travel to our rustic hotel for the evening.
Overnight: Monteverde | Breakfast
Today we enjoy a four hour guided hike in the Monteverde Cloud Forest Biological Reserve, which is located on the Continental Divide - the border between the Pacific and Atlantic sides of Costa Rica. We explore different paths that weave through the cloud forest, spotting wonderful wildlife en route and eventually arrive at one of the highest points of the reserve. This point is nicknamed “La Ventana”, meaning “the window” because of its spectacular panoramic views it offers.
The afternoon is free to independently explore or enjoy some of the many optional activities available, including visiting other reserves, the butterfly garden or even zip lining through the trees!
Overnight: Monteverde | Breakfast
Manuel Antonio National Park
Monteverde – Quepos. We continue our journey to the lively west coast city of Quepos - gateway to the Manuel Antonio National Park which was established in 1972 and extends along the Pacific coast. This celebrated park is blessed with beautiful lagoons, palm fringed beaches, a vast array of animals and lush green forests. The rest of the day and tomorrow is free to explore at our own leisure.
Take a hike through the beautiful national park in hopes to see the endangered squirrel and capuchin monkeys, sloths and coatis in their natural habitat or simply relax on one of the its four idyllic Pacific beaches, surrounded by lush jungle.
Overnight: Quepos | Breakfast x 2
Quepos - San Jose. In the morning we embark on our journey to Costa Rica’s capital - San Jose. Upon arrival our guide will take us on a tour of the city's highlights, taking us along the Paseo Colon to visit the National theatre, National museum or Gold museum.
After lunch, the rest of the day is free to spend at leisure. Visit the local markets, shop for souvenirs or take a must see trip to one of the five active volcanoes of Costa Rica – Volcano Poas.
Overnight: San Jose | Breakfast, Lunch
Monday. Our tour ends after breakfast and hotel check out today. We can arrange a departure transfer upon request or would be delighted to help you extend your stay in Costa Rica and book more nights for you if you’re still not quite ready to head home.
Prices & Dates
Prices shown are per person travelling. 'Twin/Double' prices per person apply when there are 2 people travelling, sharing a room. The 'Single supplement' applies for single travellers and needs to be added to the 'Twin/Double' price.Read More
The hotels listed below are ones which we frequently use on this tour. We reserve the right to substitute these hotels to ones of a similar standard when necessary.
Hotel Habana Libre, Havana
One of the most emblematic hotels in Havana, the majestic Hotel Habana Libre stands 25-storeys tall. Wander through its impressive lobby and up to your spacious guestroom, equipped with all the necessary comforts to enjoy your stay. Spend your evening in one of the hotel’s many bars and restaurants, where you will find a mouth-watering array of international and Cuban cuisine. And, best of all, enjoy panoramic views of the sea and city from the hotel’s uppermost floor which boasts a retractable roof.
Hotel Rancho San Vicente, Vinales
Set in the Vicente Valley, part of the more famous Viñales Valley, Hotel Rancho boasts a wonderfully green location. Guest cabins are dotted through lush woodland and the hotel is overlooked by picturesque mountains. The rooms are fully equipped with modern amenities and you will find a central bar and restaurant serving tasty international cuisine. The outdoor pool is also the perfect place to unwind and soak up the scenery as you listen to the sounds of nearby birds.
Hotel Jagua Cienfuegos, Cienfuegos
This contemporary hotel is set in the exclusive district of Punta Gorda. It features colourful guestrooms, with a balcony or terrace, in either the main building or surrounding three villas. Numerous bars and restaurants offer delicious international and Caribbean cuisine. You can also enjoy the hotel’s Jacuzzis, gym and soak up the sun by the adults-only outdoor pool. Take a refreshing dip or simply unwind and admire stunning views of the bay from the comfort of your sun lounger.
Hotel San Bosco, La Fortuna
Set in the heart of La Fortuna, Hotel San Bosco is conveniently located within a 2-minute walk of local shops and restaurants. Its bright guestrooms feature traditional wood furnishings and include a private bathroom, free WiFi and a flat-screen TV. An outdoor pool offers guests both a refreshing swim and stunning views of the nearby Arenal Volcano. And with breakfast served at the poolside, there’s certainly plenty of opportunities for you to enjoy the vistas.
Rancho Makena, Monteverde
Originally a dairy farm, Rancho Makena is now comprised of grazing land, lush forest and rustic cabins. Built from reforested wood, the guest accommodation is simple yet comfortable, with hot water bathrooms. A cafeteria-style restaurant serves a tasty breakfast, with lunch and dinner available upon request. Relax and enjoy the peace of this natural setting. With beautiful views down to the forest and valley below, Rancho Makena gives you a wonderful taste of life in rural Costa Rica.
Hotel Mimos, Quepos
Enjoying a fantastic tropical setting, Hotel Mimos is conveniently located between Quepos town centre and the beautiful Manuel Antonio Park. Arranged over 3 storeys, its tasteful guestrooms are equipped with air-conditioning, free WiFi and a private bathroom. The hotel also boasts lush gardens and an on-site restaurant serving authentic Italian cuisine. Fringed by green palms, the two outdoor pools are perfect for cooling off after a day’s travelling.
Hotel Colonial, San Jose
Featuring neo-colonial architecture, Hotel Colonial is ideally located close to the city’s top sights. Guestrooms are equipped with all the essential amenities, with a regional breakfast of fresh fruit, eggs, bread and juices included. If you’re looking to unwind, you can relax in either the lobby, terrace or the pool located in the center of the hotel’s interior garden. WiFi is also available in communal areas and a wide range of restaurants offering both local and international cuisine can be found close by.