Tropical Central America Tour | Yampu Tours

Custom Travel Experiences Since 1998

Book with Confidence!

We are still taking new bookings for future travel, now with our new flexible 'Book with Confidence' terms and conditions. See Details

- , ,

Tropical Central America Tour

,

PRIVATE TOUR - 11 DAY SAMPLE ITINERARY

FROM £$5649+

Private Tour Highlights

  • Admiring the Panama Canal on a boat tour, navigating the Bay of Panama and Gatun Lake.
  • Looking out for the Slaty-tailed Trogon, Keel-billed Toucan, Thick-billed Mot-Mot, and many more birds on a hike through Soberania National Park.
  • Trekking the mossy, plant-lined trails of the beautiful La Paz Waterfall Gardens near San Jose.
  • Touring the Poas Volcano, one of the most stunning attractions in the Central Valley.
  • Walking the hanging bridges and canopy walkways of the Arenal National Park, gaining a unique perspective on the forests below.
  • Taking a bath in the natural hot springs of Arenal, known for the rejuvenating properties of their mineral rich waters.
  • Visiting the colonial gem of Granada, one of the oldest cities in the Americas.
  • Reveling in the splendor of San Francisco Church, known for its abundance of elegant artworks.
  • Absorbing some of the most pristine wilderness and unforgettable landscapes of Nicaragua, during a visit to Ometepe Island.
Interested in this tour?   Let us build you a customized quote based on your budget.

Tour Overview

This combined country Tropical Central America Tour invites you to experience the beautiful, lush, and wild Central American nature with a Panama Canal transit and visit to the Gamboa Rainforest Resort. Take an aerial tram through the lush treetops in Panama. From there, Yampu travelers continue to San José in Costa Rica to visit the steaming Poas and Arenal Volcanoes, staying at the foot of Arenal. While there, we will take an excursion to the hanging bridges, offering adventurers a whole new vantage-point of the diverse and flourishing flora and fauna. Spend the night and rejuvenate in the revitalizing Tabacon Hot Springs. Then, travel to the old city of Granada in Nicaragua and admire the architecture of old churches. We will explore Lake Nicaragua and visit Ometepe Island. We will spend the last two days in the beach area of San Juan del Sur, a tranquil fishing village with beautiful white-sand beaches, smooth waters, and ecological richness.

Inclusions
Prices includes international airfare from Panama to San José, San José to Managua and Managua to Miami, hotel accommodation with daily continental breakfast, guided tours in English, meals where specified, entrance fees, transportation between hotels, transfers between airport and hotel, English-speaking naturalist guides and taxes. Local airport taxes that are payable in the country of destination are not included. Taxes and security fees that can be paid at time of ticketing are already included.

Please consult with a Yampu Tour Consultant for upcoming Panama Canal transit dates.
Best Time to Travel
JAN FEB MAR APR MAY JUN
JUL AUG SEP OCT NOV DEC

Best Good Consult

Pricing Details
  3-Star 4-Star 5-Star Luxury
Double £$5302 £$5649 £$6404 £$8280
Single £$7475 £$8172 £$9680 £$13433

Prices shown above are per person. Hotel categories do not adhere strictly to international ratings; Yampu has evaluated the hotels according to destination and availability. Prices include local airfare (where applicable), hotel accommodation including daily breakfast; all transfers with baggage handling, all guided tours in English and all entrance fees.

Trip Type:

All our trips are operated on a private basis unless specified otherwise. This is only a sample itinerary; your Yampu Tour Consultant will personalize this trip for you according to your available dates, interests and type of hotels. This is your trip and we will work on making it perfect!

Tour Itinerary

Day
1

Flight to Panama

Upon arrival in Panama City, transfer to the hotel.

Upon arrival in Panama City, transfer to the hotel.

Day
2

Soberania National Park and Gamboa Resort

In the early morning trek up to the Soberania National Park. There, walk a part of the famous track Camino de Cruces that connects the Pacific to the Atlantic coast. This historical trail was once used by merchants, slaves, European explorers and gold seekers. In the morning enjoy a nice and fresh climate in the forest and have the opportunity to observe many different species of plants and animals. The Soberania National Park is part of a biological corridor that goes all the way from the Pacific to the Atlantic Ocean. There, observe many birds, mammals and reptiles. Return to the hotel and transfer to Gatun Lake. Upon arrival in Gatun Lake, take an aerial tram ride. The aerial tram ride traverses a mile long tract of Humid Forest that lies within the Gamboa Resort's boundaries. Observe the forest canopy in some areas and are likely to encounter birds and hear Howler monkeys. The tram ascends 280 feet over half a mile and ends atop a hill. From here walk two minutes to the observation tower (which is optional) and for those with some stamina involves a climb of a 100 feet up a mildly inclined ramp which is also wheelchair accessible. From the observation tower get great views of the Canal, the Chagres River as well as the surrounding forested areas of Soberania National Park and the town of Gamboa. The Tower is slightly less than 500 feet above sea level with most of this elevation attained by tram. On the return portion of the tram descend the final half-mile back to the starting point. After the aerial tram tour visit the self-guided exhibits at the Gamboa Resort. ...read less

Birdwatching-Soberania-Panama
Day
3

Canal Transit

Board the cruise ship to start the water portion of the tour. Enter the canal at the north end of the Gaillard Cut, where the Chagres River flows into the canal. The Gaillard Cut (also known as Culebra Cut because its curves resemble a snake) is one of the main points of interest for visitors because it was carved through the Continental Divide and this section of the Canal is full of history and geological value.
The boat will travel the Cut's 13.7 kilometers on the way to Pedro Miguel Locks. During the transit of the Cut one will be able to appreciate the continuous maintenance that this area requires, because it is very susceptible to landslides. In this area one will be able to observe the work in process for the Panama Canal expansion project. Before reaching the Pedro Miguel Locks at the southern end of the Cut, be able to view the new Centennial Bridge which crosses over the Canal.
Next, the ship will enter Pedro Miguel Locks, which is one of the two sets of locks on the Pacific side, and here the vessel is lowered 9 meters in one step. Then enter Miraflores Lake, which is a small artificial body of fresh water that separates Pedro Miguel from Miraflores Locks, the latter being the final set of locks before reaching the Pacific Ocean. At Miraflores Locks the vessel is lowered 16 meters in two distinct steps. Once in the Pacific Ocean the vessel will sail to the beautiful Flamenco Marina where passengers disembark.
On the way to Flamenco, pass under the Bridge of the Americas, and later, be able to admire the Bay of Panama and Panama City's splendorous skyline. Upon arrival at Flamenco be transferred back to the Panama city hotel.

Note: Exact itinerary may vary, depending on where the transit starts. ...read less

Panama-Canal
Day
4

San Jose, Costa Rica

Transfer to the airport to take the flight to San José de Costa Rica. Upon arrival in San José, transfer to the hotel.

Transfer to the airport to take the flight to San José de Costa Rica. Upon arrival in San José, transfer to the hotel.

San-Jose-Pacific-Coast
Day
5

La Paz Waterfalls, Poas Volcano and Coffee Plantation Tour

Visit a third-generation coffee plantation and learn how coffee is picked, milled, ground and roasted. Continue on to Poas Volcano, one of the four active volcanoes in Costa Rica. The crystal-blue sulfur pools will amaze along with the steam rising from the various volcanic vents. Following the visit to the volcano, continue to La Paz Water Fall Garden for lunch (included) and tour. On arrival to the La Paz, walk through a trail, leading to a spectacular waterfall in the middle of the rainforest. Visitors to the trails will be able to view Templo Waterfall and Magia Blanca Waterfall. Inside the park, visit the hummingbird gallery, the serpentarium, the bird house, the butterfly garden and the frog’s exhibit. After the tour, continue to Arenal and check into the hotel. ...read less

coffee-plantation
Day
6

Arenal Hanging Bridges

Embark on a tour of Arenal's greatest highlights! Start with a visit to the Arenal Hanging Bridges for a 3 km hike. Continue from there to the La Fortuna Waterfall, where one can swim in an inviting pool at the base of the waterfall. Afterwards, enjoy lunch in La Fortuna and then hike in the Arenal Volcano rainforest, which includes a walk to the lava view point. Last, but not least, stop at Tabacon Hot Springs to soak in the natural pools and enjoy a buffet dinner.

Embark on a tour of Arenal's greatest highlights! Start with a visit to the Arenal Hanging Bridges for a 3 km hike. Continue from there to the La Fortuna Waterfall, where one can swim in an inviting pool at the base of the waterfall. Afterwards, enjoy lunch in La Fortuna and then hike in the Arenal Volcano rainforest, which includes a walk to the lava view point. Last, but not least, stop at Tabacon Hot Springs to soak in the natural pools and enjoy a buffet dinner.

Arenal-Hanging-Bridge-Nayara-Hotel-Photo
Day
7

San Jose- Managua

Transfer to San Jose to take the flight to Managua, Nicaragua. Upon arrival, transfer to Granada. Upon arrival, transfer to the hotel.

Transfer to San Jose to take the flight to Managua, Nicaragua. Upon arrival, transfer to Granada. Upon arrival, transfer to the hotel.

Nicaragua_managua
Day
8

Granada Colonial City

Excursion read more...

Excursion of Granada Colonial City, known as the second-oldest city founded by Europeans in the Western Hemisphere. Granada was founded in the year of 1524 by Spanish captain Francisco Hernandez de Cordoba. Although often overwhelmed by pirates, destroyed during civil wars and set on fire by the American filibuster William Walker in 1856, it is still one of the most beautiful cities in Nicaragua. Travel by carriage to appreciate the beautiful architecture of the city. The trip will end with a boat ride on the beautiful islands of Lake Nicaragua. Lunch included. Overnight in Granada. ...read less

Granada-Nicaragua
Day
9

Ometepe

Early departure and transfer to San Jorge Port. Ferry and excursion of Ometepe Island, then take an unforgettable journey to one of the most beautiful places of Nicaragua: Ometepe Island, the biggest island on a fresh water lake. The excursion starts by heading toward the southern part of the country, getting to San Jorge’s port to take a ferry to Ometepe, to enjoy a spectacular view. Visit places like the Pre-Columbian Museum, the Green Puddles Lagoon, the great view of Volcano Conception and the green volcano Madera. Lunch will be taken in Santo Domingo beach. Back to the port to take the ferry and transfer to San Juan del Sur. ...read less

Nicaragua_Ometepe_Island_Volcano
Day
10

Day at Leisure

Day at leisure to visit the small fisherman town of San Juan del Sur or relax, perhaps on the beach. Afternoon, transfer to Managua and then to the hotel.

Day at leisure to visit the small fisherman town of San Juan del Sur or relax, perhaps on the beach. Afternoon, transfer to Managua and then to the hotel.

san-Juan-del-sur-town-Nicaragua
Day
11

Flight Home

Transfer to the airport to take the flight home, or choose from optional add-ons in other Central American countries.

Transfer to the airport to take the flight home, or choose from optional add-ons in other Central American countries.

Panama City, Panama

San José, San Jose, Costa Rica

Arenal, Guanacaste, Costa Rica

Granada, Nicaragua

San Juan del Sur, Rivas, Nicaragua

Places You'll See

  • panama-city-center

    Panama City

    The largest and most modern city in central America, as well as the capital of Panama, is Panama City. Within the city is the Panama Canal which links the Pacific and Atlantic oceans through a fifty-mile channel. Enjoy views of the canal via airplane or stay close to the ground and delight in a terrific view of Panama from Amador Causeway, connecting three islands to the mainland.

  • San-Jose-Costa-Rica

    San Jose

    Visit the largest, and one of the most exciting cities in all of Costa Rica, San Jose. Get lost in the beautiful shades of green at the Museo del Jade, home to the largest collection of pre-Columbian Jade in Central America. Take a Barrio Bird Walking Tour, or a tour through the butterfly farm and coffee farm. Watch street performers juggle, play music, and interact with their audience.

  • Arenal

    Arenal

    Experience the excitement of visiting a 7,000 year old, active stratovolcano by visiting the Arenal Volcano in Costa Rica. Though it is now dormant, Arenal was the most active of Costa Rica’s seven active volcanoes until 2010. Its dense vegetation is also home to numerous species of wildlife.

  • Granada-Nicaragua-church

    Granada

    Granada is one of the oldest colonial towns in Nicaragua, where one can enjoy exploring a cloud forest atop Volcan Mombacho or see the smoke billowing from the active Volcan Masaya. Learn the history and the process of chocolate making at ChocoMuseo, or take a boat tour of the islets surrounding the area. Another top destination for Granada is Alhambra, an ancient Nasrid palace city.

  • san-juan-del-sur-Nicaragua

    San Juan del Sur

    The beautiful fishing village of San Juan del Sur offers an endless amount of entertainment. Enjoy surfing or fishing the beautiful blue waters or enjoy the legendary sunsets and nightlife with the variety of lovely bars and restaurants along the coast.

  • volcano-nicaragua-concepcion - Copy

    Ometepe Island

    Rising from the depths of the massive Lake Nicaragua are two majestic volcanos linked together by a flat isthmus, creating the hourglass shaped island of Ometepe. Whether arriving by air or sea, the imposing volcanos will be of central focus as clouds and mist heighten the drama of the impressive peaks. Dive in to crystal clear lagoons, seek out the diverse wildlife of the island, or scale the sides of these impressive active volcanoes.

Hotel Options

3 Star Properties

Panama City : TRYP by Wyndham Panama Centro

Panama City : Hotel Deville (Jr. Suite)

Panama City : Toscana Hotel

San Jose : El Rodeo Country Inn

San Jose : Presidente Hotel

San Jose : Fleur de Lys

Arenal : Arenal Manoa Hotel & Spa

Arenal : Lomas del Volcan

Granada : Colonial (standard)

Granada : Hotel La Mar Dulce

Granada : Hotel Con Corazon

Granada : Patio del Malinche (standard)

San Juan del Sur : Hacienda Iguana

San Juan del Sur : El Pacifico

San Juan del Sur : Hotel Colonial, San Juan del Sur

4 Star Properties

Panama City : The Bristol

Panama City : Grace Panama

Panama City : Westin Panama

San Jose : Wyndham Garden (Escazu)

San Jose : Tryp San Jose Sabana Hotel

Arenal : Arenal Manoa Hotel & Spa

Arenal : Arenal Observatory Lodge (standard Room)

Arenal : El Silencio del Campo

Arenal : Arenal Springs Resort & Spa

Granada : Hotel Plaza Colon (Superior)

Granada : Casa San Francisco (standard)

San Juan del Sur : Mango Rosa Nicaragua

San Juan del Sur : Buena Vista Club And Resort

San Juan del Sur : Posada Azul

5 Star Properties

Panama City : Waldorf Astoria (Junior Suites)

Panama City : Las Clementinas

Panama City : Hotel Deville (Duplex Suite)

San Jose : Grano de Oro

San Jose : Hotel Real Intercontinental (Escazu)

Arenal : Lost Iguana Resort & Spa

Arenal : Royal Corin Thermal Water & Spa Resort

Arenal : Nayara Hotel Spa & Gardens

Granada : Hotel Granada (Junior Suite deluxe)

Granada : Hotel Plaza Colon (Superior with Balcony)

Granada : Colonial (Junior Suite)

San Juan del Sur : Hotel Aqua Wellness Resort

San Juan del Sur : Punta Teonoste (Villa Familiar)

San Juan del Sur : Pelican Eyes (standard Room)

Luxury Properties

Panama City : American Trade Hotel (Super Cuarto Room)

Panama City : Ocean Club Intercontinental Hotel (Suite on the Curve)

San Jose : Xandari Resort & Spa (Alajuela)

Arenal : Tabacon Grand Spa Thermal Resort

Arenal : The Springs Resort & Spa

Granada : Hotel Plaza Colon (Suite)

Granada : La Gran Francia (Suite El Duque)

Granada : Hotel Dario (Suite)

San Juan del Sur : Villas de Palermo (Villa Regular)

San Juan del Sur : Pelican Eyes (Ocean View Town House)

San Juan del Sur : Morgan’s Rock Hacienda & Ecolodge

Testimonials

Andy

Traveled February, 2012

I have had another fantastic trip

I have had another fantastic trip and am glad I chose to spend the whole 2 weeks in Panama rather than combine with another country as there is so much to see and do there. It is difficult to pick out the high points: the canal crossing was an ambition fulfilled; I had been a little apprehensive about San Blas but for no reason the cabins over the sea were amazing, Boquete was cool and the bird life wonderful. Tranquilo Bay in Bocas was exactly the right choice for me. The whole team was incredibly welcoming and knowledgeable; they made my stay a real treat. I have so many photos I shall spend the next weeks sorting them! I didn’t get to see much of the Carnival but was treated to two firework displays from the view from my hotel window each night I am a big fireworks fan. I think this is the 6th trip I have taken with Yampu/Kontiki and so far they have all been wonderful. Thanks for organizing this one for me.

Traveled To

Cheryl

Traveled January 2016

Panama- It was seriously a great trip and I saw everything I wanted.

Our trip to Panama was seriously a great trip and I saw everything I wanted. We saw a bunch of kinkajous and cacomistles that came to our cabin at los quetzales. That place is magical, the bird life alone (we saw 6 quetzels, one even right outside our cabin) makes it worth a trip. Families would love these cabins and hands down the place had the best food in Panama.

Everything was made fresh and they had a huge organic garden with all kinds of vegetables, great for someone like me that does not eat meat.

Traveled To

Peggy S, Canada

Traveled December, 2013

Just wanted to let you know that we have had a fabulous time

Just wanted to let you know that we have had a fabulous time and are very impressed with your choice of hotels and areas. Because of this we would like to book through you a trip to Nicaragua for Dec 26,2013 for one week. All hotels were able to accommodate my dietary needs. We especially loved Lake Attilan and the hotel there. The guides were excellent except for the guide we had in Tikal. His name was Roni and he didn’t consider our needs but had his own agenda. After repeated requests for lunch, he delayed serving us lunch both days until 3PM. The trip to the temples was excellent in spite of him. He went into too much detail and his English was very hard to understand. The first day when arriving in Flores airport, we felt that we could have gone directly to the nature park, instead of driving 45minutes to the hotel,then a 45minute boat ride back to almost where we started to begin the walk. Otherwise the vacation was perfectly organized and I would like to thank you for that, Look forward to your proposal for Niaragua with top hotels. Happy New Year

Let Us Customize This Trip For You

Our World Experts offer full support and dedication to customizing this tour to fit your wishlist - We can mix and match experiences, hotels and highlights to fit your budget and taste.

Similar Tours