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Tag 1 San José

Ankunft zu jeder Zeit möglich und Transfer zum Hotel.

You will be met at San José International Airport and transferred to your hotel for the night. If you arrive early enough, you'll have time to head into the city to visit a museum, shop or people-watch in the main plaza. As it is located in the central highlands, San José enjoys a moderate climate. The heat and humidity of the coast and lowland areas may affect you, with a general sense of lethargy and/or loss of appetite. This is no cause for alarm, it is simply a reaction to the heat. Be sure to drink plenty of water (cold bottled water is available everywhere) and do not attempt too much in any given day. We prefer fan-cooled rather than air conditioned rooms to avoid having to acclimatize to the heat and humidity every time you go outside. Like most cities, San José has its good and bad sides. It is the centre of government, theatre, and art, as well as of air pollution and congestion. It has beautiful parks and museums, and a few beggars on the streets. It is big and often noisy, but even from its crowded downtown streets, you'll often enjoy a view of the surrounding lush mountains. Probably the hardest thing you will do in San José, other than get safely across busy streets, is keep the street numbering systems straight. Street and avenue numbers are posted on buildings at the corners of some intersections. Keep looking as you walk, and you will eventually find one. The plaza is a good place to people-watch. A mime, juggler, marimba band, magician, or storyteller may be performing for whatever is collected when the hat is passed. Artisan booths are common, creating a regular arts and crafts fair atmosphere. A source of pride for the Ticos (Costa Ricans) is the National Theatre. Inaugurated in 1897, the building was paid for by coffee growers through a voluntary tax on every bag of coffee exported. The National Museum, housed in the Bellavista Fortress, offers exhibits on pre-Columbian art, colonial art and furniture and religious art within a 19th century building that was converted from a military fortress after the army was abolished. The Museum of Costa Rican Art, located in La Sabana Park used to be the international airport and is in the old terminal building. The Jade Museum is on the 11th floor of the Instituto Nacional de Seguros building. In addition to the marvelous collection of jade objects, there are pre-Columbian ceramic and stone works as well as displays with archaeological and ethnographic information. The Gold Museum is located underneath the Plaza de la Cultura. Its spectacular collection of indigenous gold art belongs to the Central Bank of Costa Rica. The best and least expensive places to buy souvenirs in San José are the markets. The two main ones are in Plaza de la Cultura, which is an outdoor open market, and the Central Market, where handicrafts are sold along with boots, fish, flour, herbal remedies, shirts and everything else you can imagine. Always watch your belongings and be ready for crowds. If you plan on spending a few days in San José prior to or after your tour, there are a number of activities within the city and area that you can participate in, many of them outdoors.

Tag 2 La Fortuna (1F,1A)

Transfer von San José zur Region am Vulkan Arenal. Besuch der Thermalquellen mit Abendessen inklusive.

You'll be picked up from your San Jose Hotel (between 7:20am and 8am) for the trip to La Fortuna, with Arenal Volcano looming nearby. Explore for most of the day before heading to Tabacon Resort to enjoy the relaxing volcanic hot springs and a fabulous dinner before checking into your hotel. Note: If space is unavailable at the Tabacon Hot Springs, you will visit the equally lovely and relaxing Baldi Hot Springs for dinner and leisure time in the hot pools. Set on the northern plains of Costa Rica, Arenal Volcano sits on the southeast shore of artificial Lake Arenal (77 square kilometres, or 48 square miles). Separating the mountain ranges of Guanacaste and Tilarán, the lake was created by a hydroelectric dam. Winds sweeping off the Caribbean Sea reach speeds of 48 to 72 km/hr (30 to 45 mph), making Arenal one of the best windsurfing destinations in the world. The volcano, once quite active, has been in a dormant state since the beginning of 2011 but still is a dramatic backdrop to the town of La Fortuna. During the day, its reflection on Lake Arenal is truly enchanting. There are several attractions in the area aside from the lake and volcano. It is a birder's paradise, with over 600 species as permanent residents, and is inhabited by numerous species of frogs. You can also enjoy hiking the areas nature trails, or if you're more daring, you can opt to climb a ladder to participate in one of the canopy tours and catch a fresh glimpse of the forest greenery. After a long day of exploring, the local hot springs might just be the answer to your tired muscles. Soak in one of the natural thermal baths under the shade of the surrounding canopy.

Tag 3 La Fortuna/Arenal (1F,1M)

Ausflug zu den Feuchtgebieten von Caño Negro zur Erkundung der Tierwelt.

After breakfast, enjoy some terrific wildlife-spotting opportunities on your guided tour of Caño Negro Wetlands (Pick up around 7:30 am) . Return to Arenal for the night. Caño Negro Wildlife Refuge is the perfect place to enjoy natural sightseeing. Since the refuge is found on the low-lying northern plains, water is the key word. During the area's dry season, the refuge can be accessed by road, but during the rainy season - boats are the answer. In the area of the lowland keep on the look out for sloths and anteaters in the treed area, while birders will find a cornucopia of subjects for their binoculars and cameras. White cranes and ducks abound in the shallow along the rivers.

Tage 4-5 Monteverde (2F)

Geführte Wanderung durch das Monteverde Nebelwald-Reservat. Option, mit einer Zip-Line durch die Baumwipfel zu schweben, Schmetterlingsgärten zu entdecken oder eine geführte Nachtwanderung zu unternehmen.

After breakfast (pick-up at 8:20, 8 : 20 am, please be in the lobby 15 mins before) head to Monteverde - a small town located in the clouds. Check into your hotel, then enjoy a day exploring on your own. A cloud forest is much like a rainforest, but much of the moisture comes not from falling rain but from the condensation left by the nearly constant cloud cover that blankets the tops of mountains in many parts of the tropics. Monteverde Reserve covers 1600 hectares of forest and is home to a great variety of wildlife. More than 2000 species of plants, 320 birds species, and 100 different species of mammals inhabit this small area. On Day 5, (Pick up at 7am) after breakfast, head off to the biological reserve for a guided trek through the lush, thriving cloudforest. The rest of the afternoon and evening are free for you to enjoy. The village of Monteverde was founded in the 1950s by Quakers from the United States. They wished to leave behind the constant fear of war and the obligation to support continued militarism through U.S. taxes and chose Costa Rica because it was committed to a non-militaristic economic path. Since its founding, Monteverde has grown slowly as other people, who shared the original Quaker founder's ideals, moved to the area. Although the Quakers came here to farm the land, they recognized the need to preserve the rare cloud forest that covers the mountain slopes above their fields. The community is very different from those on the coast, and offers several souvenir shops and the Quaker cheese factory, which is definitely worth a visit. The Santa Elena Reserve, is another park in this area that is less well known and visited, but also worth seeing. All proceeds from this park profit the local community.

Tag 6 San José (1F)

Am Nachmittag Transfer zum Flughafen oder Hotel in San José.

Depart for your return transfer to San José airport/hotel - the pick up time is between 1:00 - 1:30PM. Please be sure to advise us at time of booking if you are going to the San Jose airport or wish to be dropped at a hotel (not included). *If you are departing San Jose today, please book your onward travel for no earlier than 8:00pm.

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