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River Tarcoles

River Tarcoles: Our most recommended tours and activities

From San José: Carara National Park and Tárcoles River Tour

1. From San José: Carara National Park and Tárcoles River Tour

Begin your journey by being picked up from your hotel, and going on a scenic 1.5-hour drive along Route 27, making your way to your first stop at Carara National Park. Head straight out onto some flat walking trails suitable for all fitness levels and wheelchair users, and admire the biological reserve's abundant jungle life in person. Look up to the 40-meter high canopy, and keep an eye out for bright scarlet macaws, agouti rodents, stunning poison dart frogs, spider monkeys, dozens of birds, fantastic fungi, and huge wild cashew trees. Next, enjoy lunch like a local and eat at a traditional soda diner, where you have the option of eating fresh fish or seafood. Re-energized, lower your gears and enjoy a relaxing boat ride for some birdwatching on the Tárcoles River. Admire the river's mangroves, which are some of the most unique and scarce ecosystems of the world, and considered to be biodiversity hotspots. Keep a lookout for the 6-meter-long American crocodiles — the largest of the continent. Finally, dig your toes into the sand of a peaceful beach at your last stop, where you will relax with the sound of the waves before heading back to your accommodation.

From San Jose: Zipline, ATV and more Full-Day Tour w/ Lunch

2. From San Jose: Zipline, ATV and more Full-Day Tour w/ Lunch

On this tour you will get to visit the town of Jaco Beach, one of the most popular beach towns in all of Costa Rica due to its proximity to the capital city of San Jose; along the way you will enjoy some breathtaking views of the mountains, shortly after you will get to stop at the word famous Tarcoles River, where you will have the opportunity to view and take photos of crocodiles in their natural environment, some of them measuring up to 19ft long. Your next stop is at Vista Los Suenos Adventure Park, here you will have the opportunity to enjoy one of the best Zip Line Tours in Costa Rica, and our Action packed ATV jungle adventure in the rain forest, crossing rivers, muddy paths and ocean view lookout spots.

From San José: Punta Leona Hotel All-Access Day Pass

3. From San José: Punta Leona Hotel All-Access Day Pass

Spend an Exclusive Beach Day at the beautiful Hotel Punta Leona Resort, this White Sand Beach Resort is just 60 minutes from the capital city of San José; It has an exuberant tropical forest surrounding the entire resort, beautiful white sand beaches with the most amazing green-emerald waters of the Pacific Ocean. Along the way enjoy breathtaking views of the mountains and stop at the world famous Tarcoles River, where you will have the opportunity to view and take photos of crocodiles in their natural environment, some of them measuring up to 19ft long. Once at the resort you will have the opportunity to enjoy the beach with your own beach chairs and umbrella, immerse yourself in the Pacific Ocean and discover our own underwater museum with our snorkeling tour. Then enjoy a first-class buffet lunch and make sure you visit the butterfly garden and natural trails.

Other Sightseeing Options in River Tarcoles

Want to discover all there is to do in River Tarcoles? Click here for a full list.

What people are saying about River Tarcoles

Overall rating

4.6 / 5

based on 14 reviews

I went on the Carara National Park and Tárcoles River Tour, from San José. The experience exceeded expectations by miles, Oropopo were streaks ahead of any other tour operator that I used here. I was picked up by Rigo, from my hotel, in a Land Cruiser rather than cramped minibus. The group was very small, making us more nimble. Rigo is a fantastic guide. It was a privilege to be experiencing nature and being advised by such a qualified biologist. His English is perfect, and he was good fun. The Carara National Park was lovely and quiet, in contrast to the absolutely packed Manuel Antonio National Park. There may be less of the big mammals here, but there's fascinating stuff to see. We were lucky to see a pair of fantastic scarlet macaws. The river tour was an incredible experience. It is an extensive tour, going up and down the river and then into mangroves. You'll see lots of huge crocodiles, very close up. The bird life is also spectacular. The guide on the boat was entertaining

Cello, our amazing guide From Oropopo Experience Tour Co. promptly picked us up at the hotel in a very comfy van. There were only three people on the tour which was great because it made us feel like we were on a private tour. Previously, we had tours from a different company where they jammed 16-18 people on a small bus. Cello was very patient, knowledgeable, and passionate about his job. During our tour of the Carara National Park, Cello pinpointed monkeys, toucans, and various species of insects. Next, he took us to Tarcoles River for a boat tour. In this relaxing cruise on the river, we encountered multiple crocodiles, a wide variety of bird species including hundreds of pelicans on tree tops. After the boat ride, Cello took us to a small family-owned restaurant by the beach for an excellent lunch. After lunch, he drove us to a secluded beach taking a short trail to the beach enjoying beautiful scenery, huge rock formations, and surrounding mountain greenery. Amazing day!

Excellent day tour from San jose, the tour starts with the crocodile boat ride, it is an experience that will stay with you for years. You get to see many crocodiles in the Tarcoles river along with a very knowledgeable guide that thoroughly explains the different habitats, crocodiles and birds that live in and near the river. Rigo then takes you to Carara National park and slowly guides you through the park pointing out various insects, lizards, toads and monkeys that you will encounter overall this was one of the best tours from San Jose that I took during my time in Costa Rica

this was a fantastic trip. Rigo was a fantastic and welcoming guide. Very accommodating. I saw so many animals, flocks of red macaws, crocodiles, poison dart frogs, just to name a few. I will be recommending this trip to friends and family. Thank you!

Very good combination of the activity in the day. Nice tour guide, small group, very convenient.