17 NOV - 25 NOV
About This Tour
Costa Rica is naturally colorful, and first time visitors may feel like they stepped into the middle of rainbow. From every angle the world is flooded with vibrant hues – in the dazzling flowers or vibrant tropical birds and the exotic butterflies as well as the lustrous red coffee plants and the orange glow of molten lava on a volcano rim. In addition to its dazzling colors, visitors are most attracted by the diversity of nature they encounter here. The landscape and micro-climates are ever-changing, and amazing creatures abound.
This is a veritable playground, with a wide range of activities to suit every taste. Whether you want non-stop action or quiet reflection, Costa Rica is a place you must experience. It is also the perfect holiday getaway, with comfortable temperatures and the warm, hospitable greetings of the friendly people here. If you’ve never been to Costa Rica, this tour allows you to check off several items on your personal bucket list of adventures. If you already been here but haven’t gone back in years, join Toto Tours as we make our “return to paradise” after an absence of several years. This is far from an ordinary Costa Rica tour!
- Go whitewater rafting.
- Learn how to salsa dance.
- Zip-line through the canopy of the trees.
- Hike in a cloud forest.
- See an active volcano.
- Soak in hot springs.
- Observe a crocodile in its natural environment.
- See a poisonous snake from a safe distance.
- Learn how to surf.
- Ride a horse on the beach.
ARRIVE IN COSTA RICA
Arrange your international flight to arrive today in San Jose, the capital of Costa Rica. Use the airport code SJO to search for best flights. Try to arrive by 4:00 pm at the latest to be ready for our welcome festivities. You might consider arriving a day early if your flight will arrive after 4pm. We can arrange an additional night for you at our group hotel, and a city tour if it is your first time here. Those arriving today will be met at the airport and transferred to our city center hotel. Our group gathers in the early evening for introductions over drinks, followed by a Welcome Dinner at a nearby restaurant. Overnight in San Jose. (Welcome Dinner included)
After breakfast we depart San Jose and head for Arenal Volcano. We make a couple of stops along the way, the first being at the Doka Estate, where you will have a chance to learn the whole process of how your morning cup of coffee goes from a coffee plant to your mug. From here we proceed to the La Paz Waterfall Gardens, where we can see and learn about all the different types of flora and fauna that Costa Rica is so well known for, all in an incredibly lovely setting. Lunch will be at La Paz. After lunch we continue to the Fortuna area to check into our hotel. Enjoy a great view of the Arenal Volcano and be sure to take some time to soak in the hot springs at the hotel. (All Meals)
RAFTING OR FLOATING
This morning you can choose between a more adventurous whitewater rafting trip down the class 2-3 rapids of the Balsa River, or a more relaxing float trip on the Peñas Blancas River. Lunch is included in either option. There will be free time this afternoon to enjoy the facilities at the hotel. In the evening we will head off to salsa dancing lessons and dinner. Overnight at Arenal. (All Meals)
TREETOP EXCURSIONS / MONTEVERDE
Once again you have two options this morning. You can, depending on how adventurous you are, choose between ziplining through the tree tops or strolling along on hanging bridges. In the late morning we depart Arenal, heading for the Monteverde Cloud Forest. We will make a lunch stop along the way, arriving at our hotel in the late afternoon. The evening is at leisure to enjoy dinner and our hotel. (All Meals)
After breakfast this morning, we enjoy a guided hike through the world renowned Monteverde Reserve. Wind-sculpted elfin woodlands give way to rainforests where tall trees – festooned with orchids, bromeliads, ferns, vines and mosses – rise high into the sky. The early morning is the best time to view birds and wildlife when they are most active. We return to the hotel for lunch. In the afternoon we visit the Monteverde Orchid Garden, followed by dinner at the Cabure Restaurant. (All Meals)
After breakfast, we check out of our hotel and drive to the town of Manuel Antonio. We make a stop along the way for lunch and then go on a boat ride on the Tarcoles River, where we can get up close and personal with the crocodiles! Upon arrival in Manuel Antonio, we check in to our hotel and the rest of the day is free to relax by our hotel’s pool, have dinner or explore the surrounding area. Overnight in Manuel Antonio. (All Meals)
OPTIONAL ACTIVITIES / THANKSGIVING DINNER
This morning you can choose between any of the following activities: surfing lessons, sea-kayaking, or a hike in Manuel Antonio National Park. The afternoon is free to explore the area. Tonight we will have a special Thanksgiving feast at Barba Roja Restaurant with great views overlooking the Pacific Ocean. Overnight again in Manuel Antonio. (Breakfast & Dinner)
FREE DAY / FAREWELL DINNER
This day you again can choose which activity you would like to participate in. You may choose between taking a horse ride on the beach, a boat or kayaking trip on the Damas Estuary or a hike in Manuel Antonio National Park. The afternoon is free with lunch on your own. In early evening, we will take a sunset cruise on a catamaran for our Farewell Dinner. (Breakfast & Dinner)
The tour officially ends after breakfast this morning. Since we are driving from Manuel Antonio to the San Jose International Airport, and the drive is approximately 2.5 hours, please do not arrange any return flight departing earlier than 2:00 pm today. We will be happy to book additional nights for you in San Jose if you so desire. (Breakfast)
Entry Requirements - For citizens of the United States and Canada no visas are necessary. With a valid passport, you’re on your way.Immunizations and Health - No immunizations are required, but it is wise to make sure your tetanus booster is up-to-date.
Exit Requirements - In the past, all tourists were required to pay a departure tax of $29 at the airport. Airlines have slowly been adding this tax into their ticket prices. Hold aside $29 just in case your airline is not one of the ones who pre-pay this tax.
Making Travel Arrangements to Costa RicaOn this tour, international airfare is NOT included. You will need to get your round-trip international air from your home city to San Jose, Costa Rica (SJO). We encourage you to work with Steven Goldberg at Frosch Travel in Chicago, who knows the best flights to get you to Costa Rica.
You will need to arrive in San Jose, Costa Rica by 4 p.m. on November 17, 2017. Departure should be no earlier than 2pm on Saturday, November 25, 2017.
Steven Goldberg / Frosch TravelToll-Free in USA: 1-800-323-1276
International guests, please call +1-312-371-9686
When calling, please identify yourself as a Toto Tours participant. If you leave a message on Steven’s voice mail, he will return your call promptly. He will be happy to discuss your travel plans and help you decide when to purchase your ticket for the best rate.
NOTE: The recent trend in travel is for travelers to finalize their plans much closer to departure time than was customary in the past. While we try to be as flexible as possible we often must turn away last minute registrants because we relinquish hotel space and air reservations 8 – 12 weeks prior to departure! Please keep this in mind when making your travel plans.
What to BringIn November, average daily temperatures in Costa Rica range from 60 to 77 degrees in San Jose, and about 10 degrees warmer in Manuel Antonio. You won’t need a suit jacket or tie, as the tour is informal and dinner attire will be casual. Try to pack light and bring only one piece of luggage plus your carry-on. Create mix and match outfits, and think about layering! Pack any medications you require in a carry-on bag and leave expensive jewelry at home.
Suggested Packing List:
- Proof of citizenship. Passport and visa required.
- Nice casual wear for dinners.
- Long pants (2 pairs), belt.
- Shorts (2 – 3 pairs) for hikes and activities.
- Long-sleeve shirts (2 – 3) for evenings/sun protection.
- Waterproof hiking shoes or boots for rainforest walks.
- Sandals or rock-hoppers for the beach.
- Socks, underwear for 9 days.
- Swimming trunks.
- Sunscreen & bug spray.
- Personal toiletries.
- Anti-diarrhea medicine just in case.
- Camera, lots of digital memory, extra batteries.
- Ziploc Bags (sandwich size for documents, gallon size for wet items or toiletries).
- A good book for the long flights.
Money MattersThe monetary unit is the colon (CRC), pronounced as “co-lone.” Bills come in denominations of 50, 100, 500, 1000 and 5000 colones. Coins are 50 centimos, and 1, 2, 5, 10, and 20 colones. On December 12, 2016, the interbank exchange rate was 539.2 colones to the US dollar. Exchange money only at banks or at your hotel. It is easier at the hotel, but sometimes the cash drawer is low. Never exchange currency with someone on the street. You will get the best exchange rate by withdrawing money from ATMs, which will be available in all but the smallest villages. Credit cards are widely accepted throughout the country. Click here to see the current exchange rate.
Tipping in Costa Rica: A 10 percent service charge is automatically added to restaurant bills, plus another 10 percent tax. Tipping above the automatic charge is at your discretion. Taxi drivers appreciate (but do not expect) tips. Guides and drivers do expect tips. We will offer a group tip to guides and drivers, and more details will be provided before departure.
The Toto SpiritToto Tours provides Adventure Travel Experiences as differentiated from tours in the traditional sense. Adventure Travel allows (even encourages) you to be an active participant. Adventurers can be identified by certain traits. They are:
- fun-loving optimists who have a sense of humor and accentuate the positive
- good natured realists who are willing to accept situations as they exist
- undaunted by the unexpected, like occasional delays or bad weather
- willing to forego some of the amenities we normally take for granted
- eager to try new things & test limits
- not whiners!
Travel InsuranceWe recommend you purchase travel insurance with Travel Guard to cover for unforeseen events prior to and during your trip. Please follow the link below or call us for more information.
Tour prices per personPrice: $3,500 in double occupancy hotel accommodations.
Private Room: $800 additional, for a total tour price of $4,300.
(Paying a single supplement is not required. Toto Tours will try to match you with a roommate if you are traveling alone and prefer to share a room. If this is not possible, a single supplement will be applied to your reservation before the final payment date.)
(Due at time of registration for the tour. May be paid with a credit card.)
Remaining Balance (main tour): $2,900 double / $3,700 single
Remaining Balance Due: August 29, 2017 (80 days prior to departure)
(Full payment required with reservation form if enrolling after this date.)
Note: The tour price does not include bank service charges for processing credit card payments, and assumes that the balance of the tour price will be paid by check. If you would like to pay the final balance with a credit card, a 4% service charge will be applied. Let us know if you wish to pay by credit card, and we will adjust your invoice accordingly.
Included: 8 nights hotel accommodations; hotel breakfasts daily plus Welcome & Farewell Dinners; other meals as listed in itinerary; ground transportation in climate controlled motorcoach; sightseeing activities and entrances as listed in the itinerary. This is a fully guided and escorted tour.
Not Included: Round trip international airfare to/from San Jose, Costa Rica (SJO); ground transportation for sightseeing on your own (taxis, local guides, etc.); meals and optional activities not specifically listed in the itinerary; camera fees; alcoholic beverages; insurance; laundry, telephone calls, faxes, or any other expenses of a personal nature. Tips to drivers and guides and other conveyance attendants are not included; tipping guidelines for our group tips will be provided prior to departure.