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Alajuela

Culinary & nightlife

Our most recommended Alajuela Culinary & Nightlife

San Jose: Irazú Volcano, Cartago City & Orosi Valley Tour

1. San Jose: Irazú Volcano, Cartago City & Orosi Valley Tour

Start with a pickup from your hotel and travel by minibus along the Panamerican Highway until you reach the base of the Irazú Volcano. Travel up the winding road through fertile farmlands where many types of fruit and vegetables are cultivated.  Enjoy spectacular panoramic views of the surrounding hills and valleys. At the summit of the volcano, on a clear day, marvel at the spectacular view of both the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans. Next, descend to the city of Cartago and stop at the Virgin of the Angels Basilica. Discover this local pilgrimage site which has large vaulted ceilings and exquisite examples of stained glass windows.  Continue the tour through the Orosi Valley, an area of magnificent natural beauty. Visit one of the few remaining colonial churches in the region and stop for a tasty typical lunch at one of the local restaurants. Finally, be returned to your hotel to complete the tour.

San José: Arenal Volcano, Hot Springs, & Zip Lining w/ Meals

2. San José: Arenal Volcano, Hot Springs, & Zip Lining w/ Meals

Tour the best locations in Costa Rica and learn about local life and culture from those who live there. Visit a coffee plantation, zip line, and soak in the hot springs at the base of the Adrenal Volcano. Take the scenic route to the Arenal Volcano and visit a coffee plantation along the way. Gain an insight into the world of Costa Rican coffee and taste one of the best coffees in the world. Arrive at the "La Paz" and "San Fernando" waterfalls and admire the exotic tropical birds of Costa Rica, including many species of hummingbirds and rare emerald toucanets. Take in the views at the San Fernando Waterfall observation point before heading to the "Iguana Bridge", where you will have the chance to spot iguanas, sloths, monkeys, and toucans. Stop for an authentic Costa Rican lunch in a restaurant located in "La Fortuna." Then, prepare for a zip-lining adventure in the local rainforest jungles with 9 canopy cables and a 50 meter (150 feet) rappel on the Arenal River. Learn about the culture while listening to a "Maleku" Indigenous tribe presentation from locals. Relax for a couple of hours in the Paradise Hot Springs at the base of Arenal Volcano, surrounded by tropical gardens followed by dinner.

San Jose: Tortuguero Park Day Tour with Breakfast & Lunch

3. San Jose: Tortuguero Park Day Tour with Breakfast & Lunch

The day begins with pickup from your accommodation in San Jose, Heredia, or Alajuela at 6:00 AM. On your way to breakfast, drive past rolling coffee plantations and admire the mountains of Braulio Carrillo National Park. At around 7:15 AM, stop for a traditional Costa Rican breakfast to set you up for the day's adventure. Enjoy fresh fruit juice, coffee, eggs, and the popular gallo pinto (a typical Central American rice and bean dish.) After breakfast, visit a local banana plantation and learn about the process of growing and exporting fruit. At around 10:00 AM, leave the bus behind and hop onboard a boat as you cruise into the jungle of Tortuguero National Park. Surrounded by tropical rainforest, which covers over 29,000 hectares, soak up the magic of this luscious green landscape. As you sail along the jungle canals, see native green sea turtles, as well as other endangered animals such as sloths, monkeys, and manatees. There are also countless colorful butterflies, toucans, herons, crocodiles, and more. Learn about each of the animals and their habitat in the jungle, as well as about local conservation efforts to protect them. Once you’ve worked up a bit of an appetite, enjoy a hearty buffet lunch. After lunch, take a relaxing stroll through Tortuguero Village where you’ll discover local life and learn about the history of the town and its residents. At the end of an unforgettable day, get back on the bus at around 3:30 PM and begin the return journey back to San Jose.

San José: Guided Volcano, Waterfall & Coffee Farm Day Trip

4. San José: Guided Volcano, Waterfall & Coffee Farm Day Trip

Visit the Poás Volcano, the picturesque La Paz Waterfall (outside), and the one-and-only Starbucks coffee farm on a day trip from San José, Costa Rica. A wonderful choice for coffee aficionados and nature lovers alike, this tour includes a hotel pickup and lunch at a local restaurant. Enjoy a convenient pickup directly from your accommodation in San Jose and make your way to your first stop for the day, the Poás Volcano. Travel in an air-conditioned van and admire coffee plantations as well as flower and strawberry farms along the way. Poás is one of Costa Rica's most active volcanoes and last erupted in April 2017. The volcano and the surrounding park were closed for close to 17 months and a safety perimeter of nearly 2.5 kilometers was established around the erupting crater. At the volcano, you'll have time to enjoy the impressive main crater with its sulfur fumaroles. Then, follow a trail to the Botos Lagoon, a crater lake located inside the Poás Volcano National Park. As you hike, learn about the different ecosystems in the park. After your trek, refuel with a delicious lunch of local fare at one of the restaurants in the area. Then, head out to your next destination, the La Paz Waterfall. Discover La Paz waterfall(outside) as you stroll along paved trails through cloud forests and rainforests. Make the most of excellent photo opportunities as you visit this falls and see them from different vantage points Then, head to your final stop for the day, the Hacienda Alsacia coffee farm, the first and only Starbucks coffee farm. See the visitor center and learn what Starbucks is doing to empower farmers, promote sustainable practices, and develop the next generation of coffee. At the end of your Costa Rica adventure, enjoy a convenient transfer back to your hotel in San José.

Poás Volcano, Coffee Plantation & La Paz Waterfall Gardens

5. Poás Volcano, Coffee Plantation & La Paz Waterfall Gardens

Experience Costa Rica's nature and culture on this full-day tour from San José. Your first destination is the Doka Estate coffee plantation, where you'll learn all about the ancient techniques of producing some of the best coffee in Costa Rica and around the world. Experience the careful process involved in the cultivation, harvesting, and roasting of the Golden Bean before tasting the delectable product. After your coffee tour, continue to Poás Volcano National Park, where there is a noticeable change in temperature and beautiful scenery in a cloud forest. Climb up Poás Volcano, an active stratovolcano that most recently erupted in 2017. The crater of the volcano is over a mile across and 1,050 feet deep, making for breathtaking views. Hike on a trail to the beautiful Botos Lagoon as you learn about the different ecosystems in the park. Then, continue to La Paz Waterfall Gardens and enjoy a buffet lunch of traditional Costa Rican dishes. After lunch, explore the lush tropical rainforest. See the flowing white rivers, spectacular waterfalls, birds, butterflies, monkeys, and hummingbirds before returning to San José.

San José: Guided Walking Tour With Lunch and Hotel Pickup

6. San José: Guided Walking Tour With Lunch and Hotel Pickup

Get to know San José on a guided walking tour. Get picked up from your hotel in Alajuela, then head to the most popular attractions to learn about the city’s history and culture. Visit Central Park, the National Theater, and more. Round off your day with lunch at a local restaurant. Begin your tour by getting picked up directly from your hotel by your bilingual guide. Arrive at San José's outdoor Central Market, where the walking tour will start. Take in the atmosphere, buy local goods and food (not included in the price), and mingle with the locals. Next, wander over to Central Park. Witness the famous National Monument, a statue of five women that symbolizes the five Central American nations that resisted having their countries recolonized. Continue walking and pass by the National Museum as well as the Supreme Court. Head over to the National Theater and see San José's most impressive structures. Follow your guide around the lavish lobby in European design, which was constructed with money from taxes on coffee exports. Continue on to the Pre-Columbian Gold Museum, and marvel at the building from the outside. At the end of the tour, stop off at a nearby eatery for lunch and chow down on some traditional Costa Rican dishes. Use the opportunity to ask your guide any questions you may have about the city’s history and culture. Finally, hop back on the bus and get dropped back at your hotel.

Alajuela: 4-Hour Arenal Rainforest Trek

7. Alajuela: 4-Hour Arenal Rainforest Trek

Go on the ultimate eco-adventure trek that will bring you face-to-face with the beautiful Arenal Volcano. Rely on a knowledgeable naturalist guide to introduce you to the spectacular landscapes and wildlife of the North Costa Rican tropical rainforest. Trek 12 km along a circular trail that leads you around the base of Arenal Volcano and by the edge of the Arenal River. Check out the rapid regeneration of the forest as it grows on top of lava rock. See gallery forest, primary forest, and river forest, and the combination of different habitats available to the impressive range of native wildlife.  As you hike, listen as your guide shares with you the history of Arenal Volcano as well as the local people. Enjoy a delicious box lunch in the forest to give you the fuel you need to complete the trek.

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What people are saying about Alajuela

The all-inclusive tour was excellent with our guide, Oscar, who is very knowledgeable about Costa Rica and managed time well. After picking up guests at hotels, we started with a short coffee plantation tour, then on to visit waterfalls, and to an iguana sanctuary. Before heading to lunch, we also made a quick stop to see sloths and to take photos. Food at lunch was good, then we headed to the Zip line, which was a fantastic experience with the professional staff at Go Adventure Arenal Park. After, we relaxed at a resort near the Arenal Volcano. The volcano fortunately was visible, with fairly clear skies. We then made a quick stop to a large souvenir shop then onto a good dinner, before getting dropped back to our hotels. It was a fantastic day - I was picked up at about 6:30 am from my hotel and returned about 9 pm.

This was such a good way to kick off my travels in Costa Rica! I felt super comfortable doing this as a solo female traveller, and I met some really lovely people over the course of the day. The tour guide was so friendly and knowledgeable, and the overall day wa as great balance between exploring at an easy pace and learning lots! Definitely worth the price, I really recommend!

Harlem was a wonderful tour guide, full of knowledge about Costa Rica and very entertaining. The tour had many fun activities that were well planned and timed out nicely. Would highly recommend this tour to anyone visiting the area!

Great tour!! Really interesting and fantastic sights. Frazier our kind was amazing. He made the trip interesting and so much fun. Our group insisted we go with him on the next trip. Dont miss it!!

great walk beautiful craters beautiful walk magnificent gardens and waterfalls guide Hermich extra