48 hours in San Jose (Cariari), Costa Rica

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Nestled in the heart of the Central Valley, surrounded by breathtaking mountains, San Jose welcomes visitors with a blend of tradition and modernity. Let the city amaze you with its culture and history, as well as its proximity to Costa Rica’s protected areas with rich biodiversity and activities for those seeking adventure. Spend your first day exploring downtown San Jose, where the museums and buildings walk you through the country’s development and evolution. On your second day, pump up the volume with a ride on the rainforest aerial tram at the Braulio Carrillo National Park where exotic flora and fauna will dazzle you. This is the Costa Rica you’ve been hearing about and it’s all at your fingertips!

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Day 1


[accordion] [accordion_item title =”Morning and Afternoon” class=”acc-opened”] City Tour: Settle into your comfortable guestroom and enjoy a delicious lunch at our Las Tejas Restaurant. Try out a Costa Rican “Casado”, a typical meal including rice, beans, salad, your choice of beef, fish or chicken and sometimes, a little something extra from the Chef!
Then, make sure you’re wearing comfortable shoes and bring your camera. Prepare to explore the vibrant city of San Jose.
This tour takes off on the east side of the city to appreciate Democracy Square, the National Museum, the Supreme Court and the University of Costa Rica. The tour continues west-bound towards the Museum of Pre-colombine Art and the stunning National Theatre. Explore La Sabana Metropolitan Park, and the Museum of Costa Rican Art, located now on the same building that served as the control tower of our first and former international airport. The tour is 4 hours long and includes transportation, tour guide’s assistance and tickets to selected museums.
[/accordion_item] [accordion_item title =”Evening” class=”acc-opened”] After the tour, stroll down your favorite area of the city, have some of that Costa Rican coffee you’ve been looking forward to or end your day shopping for great souvenirs to bring back home.
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Day 2


[accordion] [accordion_item title =”Morning and Afternoon” class=”acc-opened”] The journey and stunning landscape start the minute you leave our hotel on the tour bus. Twenty minutes outside of San Jose you will cross the Continental Divide and enter Braulio Carrillo National Park. After a half hour trip through the park, the bus will reach a 1000 acre private reserve of virgin forest. Open-sided vehicles shuttle passengers from the parking area to the Visitor’s Center. The shuttle trip provides an introduction to the forest, as visitors pass a small river and numerous tree snags with nesting holes of various birds.
After a quick briefing on canopy exploration and the construction of the tram, visitors divide into smaller groups for a 45 to 90 minute (optional) nature walk with a trained naturalist guide. The trails are well-groomed and provide an excellent introduction to the rain forest.
It’s time to board the tram!
The tram ride lasts about an hour and fifteen minutes. The lower, outbound leg of the tram journey takes you skimming over hilltops and in and out of the sub-canopy, a dark world of overburdened tree limbs dripping with mosses, ferns, and orchids. Lianas and vines drape over branches and traverse forest spaces, and act as highways for birds and insects. The ride will stop several times as passengers board at either loading station.
The return leg of the ride reveals the most dramatic portion of the trip as the cars glide on a breath-taking journey through and above the airy canopy.
This tour is 6 hours long and includes: transportation, guide, introductory video, hiking, entrance fee and one meal (breakfast or lunch depending on departure time).
[/accordion_item] [accordion_item title =”Evening” class=”acc-opened”] Dinner at Bar Chiriqui: have a cocktail and some snacks at bar Chiriqui, as you relax after a long day of eco-tourism and go over the amazing photos you captured.

Insider’s tips


[accordion_item title =”Where to stay in San Jose” class=”acc-opened”] DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Cariari San Jose: located only 5 minutes from Juan Santamaria International Airport (SJO) and surrounded by beautiful lush gardens, this sustainable Costa Rica hotel is typical of San Jose colonial hacienda architecture.
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