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'Bribri and Chira Islands Communities'

What makes this trip special?

River adventure to the Yorkin community

River adventure to the Yorkin community

Bribri community

A fascinating and rewarding insight into the life of the Bribri indigenous peoples who live along the Yorkin river bordering Panama. Travel by dugout canoe to their remote village, where you will learn about their crafts and customs and enjoy a typical lunch.

Jungle at the beach

Jungle at the beach

Puerto Viejo and the Gandoca-Manzanillo wildlife reserve

Caribbean beaches backed by forest reserves in Costa Rica's peaceful southeastern tip, near the Panama border. Aside from relaxing on the beach or surfing, hire bicycles, snorkel on coral reefs or visit fascinating local indigenous communities

Stay in a traditional fishing village

Stay in a traditional fishing village

Chira Island

A pioneering eco-tourism initiative instigated by the women of Chira island to help save their community due to the effects of commercial over-fishing. Learn about local life, people and their environment staying at a simple community built lodge in this beautiful natural setting

Itinerary map for Costa Rica 'Bribri and Chira Islands Communities' holiday

Itinerary

  • Day      Overnight
  • 1 San José
  • 2 Puerto Viejo
  • 3 Puerto Viejo
  • 4 Puerto Viejo
  • 5 San José
  • 6 Chira Island
  • 7 Chira Island
  • For the detail of each day click the ‘Day-by-day’ tab above.

Day-by-day itinerary for 'Bribri and Chira Islands Communities'

DAY 1

San José

You are met at the airport on arrival, and driven to your hotel chosen from El Rodeo or Jade y Oro. Both of these hotels have joined in the Rainforest Alliance’s Sustainable Management Practices programme and both are among Costa Rica’s proud holders of level 3 certification.

DAY 2
B

Caribbean coast

You are collected from your hotel by shuttle-bus for the 7hr journey to the Caribbean coast to stay 3 nights at your choice of accommodation near Puerto Viejo. For a good mid-range option we suggest Cariblue which also has level 3 certification. It’s a small hotel in lovely mature grounds with tall trees and a swimming pool, just across a quiet lane from Playa Cocles, which is a wild unspoilt beach popular with surfers. The dramatic Almonds & Corals Lodge, which has achieved level 5—the highest possible sustainability certification, is an upper range option, tucked away in the forest close to the sea within the Gandoca-Manzanillo Wildlife Refuge.

DAY 3
BL

Bribri community

Today you visit the indigenous Bribri people, travelling into their lands by dugout with guide and boatmen. After a boat journey on the Yorkín river, which separates Costa Rica and Panama, you arrive at their village. Here you are received at the Casa de las Mujeres with a welcoming snack and presentation by way of introduction to the life of the community. To see things firsthand for yourself you will be shown around parts of the village and into the forest on which it relies. Trails, including one across a hanging bridge, introduce you to the community’s medicinal plants and food crops. Lunch is Bribri style (bananas in fresh chocolate sauce is a favourite dessert). There is much to find out about and visitors are made very welcome amid great fun. You can return to your hotel for the night if you wish, but with prior arrangement you are invited to stay a night in the community. Conditions are rustic but this is an exceptional experience. A simple dinner may be followed by stories told around the fire. Next morning there’s a choice of walks, followed by lunch, returning to your hotel in the afternoon—with a host of memories.

DAY 4
B

Jungle at the beach

Wherever you choose to stay in this part of Costa Rica be prepared to be woken at dawn by the call of howler monkeys in the trees above your cabin. Today is a free day either to relax and enjoy the Caribbean coast, or to choose something more active. Almonds and Corals offers a good range of activities if you are staying there. Alternatively, if you’ve the energy, we can arrange a full day hike into the Talamanca mountains. In October/November and February/March tens of thousands of hawks and eagles pass over this area as they migrate.

DAY 5
B

Return by shuttle-bus to overnight at your San José hotel.

DAY 6
BLD

Chira Island fishing community

You are collected by car in the morning for the first part of your journey to Chira Island in the Gulf of Nicoya. Arriving at Costa de Pájaros Pier you are taken 30min by boat through the mangroves and out to Chira Island, where you stay for 2 nights in a simple lodge built by the community to welcome their new guests. Chira Island is home to a traditional community that has relied on artisanal fishing in the beautiful Gulf of Nicoya for generations. When fish stocks began to fall because of commercial over-fishing a group of determined women turned to ecotourism to help save their community. While you are their warmly welcomed guest on the island you will be able to hear their story, see and learn about their artisan fishing methods, and visit an island bird sanctuary. You will also be able to meet and chat to the splendid women of the Chira Island Women’s Association about their amazing efforts to keep their community together and to build a sustainable future that respects their very special environment and the beautiful Gulf of Nicoya. Beach sunsets are a special treat.

DAY 7
BLD

To see something of the island’s wonderful natural setting you might take an early birdwatching trip on your second morning, or a bike ride, or a boat ride into the mangroves.

DAY 8
B

With fond farewells, you say goodbye to Chira Island and make your way onwards. You might travel to San José or Liberia for your flight home, or, if you can stay longer, spend time at the beach on the Nicoya Peninsula, or choose from the host of other possibilities in this part of the country.

Guide prices for 'Bribri and Chira Islands Communities'

options based on all year low season mid season high season peak season other season
Guide Price 2 people sharing £1,165
Prices are per person and include:
  • all travel in Costa Rica
  • all accommodation
  • meals as indicated B=breakfast, L=lunch, D=dinner
Prices do not include:
  • international flights
  • travel insurance
  • airport and departure taxes
  • items of a personal nature such as drinks, tips, laundry, etc
  • any optional excursions you may buy locally

Customer reviews for 'Bribri and Chira Islands Communities'

Recent reviews are shown here from holidays based on this initial design. In each case the itinerary may have been modified (a little or a lot) to suit the individual traveller.

Average

Seasonal information for 'Bribri and Chira Islands Communities'

Along this route in January

Day Location Max °C Monthly rainfall
1 San José 24°C rainfall 28mm
2 Puerto Viejo 30°C rainfall 213mm
3 Puerto Viejo 30°C rainfall 213mm
4 Puerto Viejo 30°C rainfall 213mm
5 San José 24°C rainfall 28mm
6 Chira Island 32°C rainfall 1mm
7 Chira Island 32°C rainfall 1mm

Typical weather for January

rainchart

Max °C figures are the average daily maximum temperatures for the month. Rainfall is the average precipitation for the month.

Hotels for 'Bribri and Chira Islands Communities'

Day 1

El Rodeo Country Inn

Alajuela

El Rodeo Country Inn is a good, mid-range hotel set back from a main road in a quiet suburban area, located just 10 minutes from San Jose airport and 15 minutes from downtown San Jose. The 29 well appointed rooms have hardwood floors and wood furnishings and are fully-equipped with cable TV, A/C, direct dial telephone, safe private bathrooms with hot water and bathtub, coffee maker and hair-dryer. Some rooms have a balcony and all have a garden view. Facilities include a swimming pool and jacuzzi, tennis court, wireless internet. The hotel is connected to a steak house, which is very popular with the locals (please note there are very limited vegetarian options at the steak house). The steakhouse closes at 4pm on Sundays but the hotel bar can prepare snacks or help you call out for a pizza.

El Rodeo Country Inn
Days 2 - 4

Cariblue

Puerto Viejo
rating

Average rating 4.3 (49 ratings)

Cariblue is a small, distinctive hotel located just outside the small Caribbean town of Puerto Viejo and opposite Cocles Beach.

With a slightly rustic feel, this is an ideal place to relax and enjoy the surrounding nature for two or three nights.

Accommodation is a choice between standard deluxe rooms or bungalows.

The wood bungalows are set in a nicely maintained, large tropical garden surrounded by jungle, just across the road from the beach.  

Cocles beach is popular with surfers .

 

Cariblue
Day 5

El Rodeo Country Inn

Alajuela

El Rodeo Country Inn is a good, mid-range hotel set back from a main road in a quiet suburban area, located just 10 minutes from San Jose airport and 15 minutes from downtown San Jose. The 29 well appointed rooms have hardwood floors and wood furnishings and are fully-equipped with cable TV, A/C, direct dial telephone, safe private bathrooms with hot water and bathtub, coffee maker and hair-dryer. Some rooms have a balcony and all have a garden view. Facilities include a swimming pool and jacuzzi, tennis court, wireless internet. The hotel is connected to a steak house, which is very popular with the locals (please note there are very limited vegetarian options at the steak house). The steakhouse closes at 4pm on Sundays but the hotel bar can prepare snacks or help you call out for a pizza.

El Rodeo Country Inn
Days 6 - 7

La Amistad Lodge

Chira Island

La Amistad Lodge is located on Chira Island, the largest island in Costa Rica’s Gulf of Nicoya, approximately half of which is a protected mangrove forest. It is a community run project. The lodge has six quadruple rooms with private bathrooms and hot water and a dormitory with shared bathroom.

La Amistad Lodge