Tamarindo

Nicaragua Full Day Tour from Costa Rica

Badge of ExcellenceTamarindo, Costa Rica
Full Day Nicaragua Tour

From $230.00

Price varies by group size

Select Date and Travelers

up to 24 hours before the experience starts (local time)

  • 15 hours
  • Pickup offered
  • Mobile ticket
  • Offered in: English

Overview

Grab your passport and head over the border for a whistle-stop tour of Nicaragua’s best bits from Costa Rica. Take in the views from Catarina Volcano, haggle over handicrafts at the Masaya Artisan Market and visit the active Masaya Volcano. After a delicious lunch of typical Nicaraguan cuisine, explore the colonial town of Granada, where you can marvel over the historic architecture and admire views of Mombacho Volcano. Finally, set sail across Lake Nicaragua for a 1-hour sunset cruise, stopping to meet the friendly monkeys of Monkey Island along the way.
  • Full-day tour to Nicaragua from Costa Rica
  • Visit Granada, Masaya Artisan Market and Masaya Volcano
  • Cruise across Lake Nicaragua and feed the monkeys on Monkey Island
  • Delicious lunch of typical Nicaraguan cuisine
  • Separate driver ensures your guide’s full attention throughout the day

What's Included

  • Bottled water
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Hotel, Condo, or House pickup and drop-off
  • All taxes, fees and handling charges
  • National Park fees
  • Gratuities
  • Andaz, Four Seasons, Planet Hollywood - $50 transport fee per booking, not per person
  • Las Catalinas - $50 pick-up fee per booking, not per person

Meeting And Pickup

You can head directly to your preferred meeting point, or request pickup.

Meeting points

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Pickup points

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Start time

04:30 AM

End point

This activity ends back at the meeting point.

Pickup details

We pick up from the hotels, condos and private residences in the following areas: Hacienda Pinilla/JW Marriott: 4:00 AM Langosta/Tamarindo Hotels, Condos, Apartments, Houses: 4:30 AM Conchal (W/Westin Conchal), Brasilito Hotels, Condos, Apartments, Houses: 4:45 AM Playa Grande, Flamingo, Potrero Hotels, Condos, Apartments, Houses: 4:30 AM Catalinas: 4:15 AM ($50 extra per booking, not per customer) RIU Hotels Main Security Gate, Not the Lobby: 5:00 AM Playas del Coco Hotels, Condos, Houses: 5:20 AM Playa Hermosa & Panama (Occ/Secrts Papagayo, Villas Sol, Condovac, Mangroove): 5:30 AM Liberia Peri Supermarket: 6:00 AM Andaz, Four Seasons, Planet Hollywood: 5:20 AM ($50 extra per booking, not per customer) Dreams Las Mareas: 6:00am Pick up times above are an estimate. We will send you an official pick up time the day before the tour.

What To Expect

Your day starts with pickup in northwest Costa Rica—an early start puts more of Nicaragua within reach. A guide will take care of all the red tape, ensuring you won’t need to deal with passports, visas, or other border-crossing logistics.

The first stop in Nicaragua is Catarina Viewpoint (Mirador de Catarina), where you’ll have time to savor views of Lake Apoyo (Laguna de Apoyo), Lake Nicaragua (Lago de Nicaragua), and Mombacho Volcano. Next, do some souvenir shopping and enjoy an included Nicaraguan lunch at Masaya Crafts Market.

A stop at Masaya Volcano National Park gives you up-close views of an active volcano, before you visit the Granada Cathedral (Catedral de Granada) in the country’s best-preserved historic center. An included sunset boat ride on Lake Nicaragua features a stop at wildlife-filled Monkey Island, and is timed to catch beautiful light on the lake’s hundreds of islands.

Pinilla (Pass By)

Tamarindo (Pass By)

Playa Langosta (Pass By)

Tamarindo (Pass By)

Native's Way

3 hours Admission Ticket Free

Playa Conchal (Pass By)

Playa Flamingo (Pass By)

Playa Hermosa (Pass By)

Playas del Coco (Pass By)

Liberia (Pass By)

Mirador de Catarina

1 hour Admission Ticket Free

Masaya Crafts Market

1 hour Admission Ticket Free

Masaya Volcano National Park

30 minutesAdmission Ticket Included

Catedral de Granada

2 hours Admission Ticket Free

Las Isletas

1 hour Admission Ticket Free

Additional Info

  • Confirmation will be received at time of booking
  • Passport name, number, expiry and country is required at time of booking for all participants. Please bring your passport on the day of your tour
  • Not wheelchair accessible
  • Stroller accessible
  • Entry to Nicaragua: Send photo of passport to info@nativesway.com or WhatsApp
  • Your departure Ticket that proof of flight out of Costa Rica
  • Most travelers can participate
  • If your hotel is not listed, contact us for quoting
  • It is prohibited to enter the country of Nicaragua with the following items: all kinds of Drones, all kinds of Binoculars, including those for Night vision, and any object considered for professional, journalistic, and similar audiovisual reproduction.
  • This tour/activity will have a maximum of 20 travelers

Cancellation Policy

You can cancel up to 24 hours in advance of the experience for a full refund.

  • For a full refund, you must cancel at least 24 hours before the experience’s start time.
  • If you cancel less than 24 hours before the experience’s start time, the amount you paid will not be refunded.
  • Any changes made less than 24 hours before the experience’s start time will not be accepted.
  • Cut-off times are based on the experience’s local time.
  • This experience requires good weather. If it’s canceled due to poor weather, you’ll be offered a different date or a full refund.
  • This experience requires a minimum number of travelers. If it’s canceled because the minimum isn’t met, you’ll be offered a different date/experience or a full refund.

Traveler Photos

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Featured review
Ron_N
Our guide Gaspar was amazing, we learned so much about Nicaragua culture, the food was wonderful and the sites amazing.

Reviews

4.5
354 reviews
Total review count and overall rating based on Viator and Tripadvisor reviews
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Reviews by Viator travelers.
Showing 1-10 of 354 reviews
Day Trip to Nicaragua
Anthony_P, Apr 2024
The trip was a long day but it was a great way to get a sense of what Nicaragua is like. The driver was very safe and the guide was friendly and knowledgeable.
Day in Nicaragua
James_M, Mar 2024
Be prepared for a massive amount of bus time today. We left RIU Palace at 5 am and returned at 9 pm. Of that, 11-12 hours was driving. Now you can see we gave this trip 4 stars, and that is because it is definitely worth doing once. Even our kids (ages 15, 19, 21) agreed that it was a worthwhile experience. First, the border crossing into Nicaragua was interesting. We had a guide take us through customs on the Costa Rican side, and walk us to Nicaragua customs. Seriously - this was not a big deal. We felt perfectly safe. Ignore the freakish reviews about the border. Honestly, it was beneficial for my family to get a more authentic perspective. After getting through that process, which was slightly expedited, a new guide took over in Nicaragua. Miguel was with us for the rest of the day, and he was great! We drove a short distance to a much needed breakfast stop. Then took a short walk to the beach of Lake Nicaragua with a view of the volcanos. Back to the bus for a lengthy drive to a stunning volcano crater and market area for souvenirs. Back to the bus and onward to Grenada for our Lake Nicaragua tour. The boat ride was a once in a lifetime experience as there is nothing like lake Nicaragua’s many islands with houses and wildlife. Loved it! Next we walked through the city of Grenada. The architecture and history were incredible. It was stoking hot out, but that is Mother Nature. The chocolate tour was brief, cheesy, but entertaining. Then we had lunch, which was fantastic. Our tour group was chatty enough at that point that we all chose to sit together (even the poor German couple who didn’t speak English or Spanish), and we all had a great time. Our last stop was supposed to be the national park and volcano tour, but the volcano was active and unstable, so the park was closed. We rerouted to San Juan. I almost can’t believe our tour bus traversed the mountain road to the Christ of Mercy statue. We also had to traverse some serious stairs. So glad there was a guy selling water at the top for a buck! The view was gorgeous and the statue was impressive. This actually ended up being a favorite stop. Finally, we made a little beach stop (I mean like 15 minutes) before heading back to the border. Crossing went faster at night as it was much less busy. If only we could have snapoed our fingers to get back to the resort 😩. 1.5 hours to Liberia and another 1.5 to our resort as we had to drop someone in Coco. Brutal. Glad we did it once though! Nicaragua is a beautiful country, and the infrastructure is surprisingly much better than that of Costa Rica. Lovely country with much to offer.
Very long but fun day
Laurie_D, Mar 2024
I really enjoyed this day trip to Nicaragua although it was a very long day. There was a very long wait at customs which apparently is unusual but I wasn't expecting 3 hours, most of which in the sun. It was only 20 mins on the return but the day didn't start off very well. A disclaimer on the Viator page would have been helpful. I was pleasantly surprised they were able to cater vegan meals. The bottled water included is one bottle of water at breakfast so make sure to bring more. I would also bring snacks for the road since there aren't any pit stops for those. It would also be helpful to have been given a heads up to bring USD in small bills as there are very few places that take cards on this itinerary. We ended up getting back at 11 instead of 7 so be flexible in your plans.
A visit to remember
William_S, Mar 2024
Always great to see another country and culture. This tour helped accomplish that and more. Very scenic lake reasonably good food served.
Quick hits of southwest Nicaragua
Daniel_N, Mar 2024
A quick way to briefly see several sites in Nicaragua in just one day. A lot of drive time, but our guide made it all very interesting.
A must do experience
ILuvAshanta_J, Mar 2024
Everything we did I enjoyed! The food was delicious, my tour guide and driver were incredible, interacting with the vendors was fun, and it ended on the perfect note-- climbing the stairs to get up close to the statue of Jesus. I would definitely recommend this tour!
Great experience!
Noreen_F, Mar 2024
This tour was amazing!! If you are in Costa Rica it is worth going to Nicaragua for a day! The guide was amazing (we had Miguel). The food was great and so were the sights!
Must Go!
Malinda_C, Mar 2024
This was a great experience and would definitely recommend it if you are in Costa Rica for more than a few days. It is an all day tour, early morning to late evening so be prepared. Claudio was our host taking us to Costa Rica and David was our guide while in Nicaragua and Antonio was our very attentive driver. Enjoyed the views and culture!
This trip is a must
Ron_N, Feb 2024
Our guide Gaspar was amazing, we learned so much about Nicaragua culture, the food was wonderful and the sites amazing.
Nicaragua
Gerardus_R, Feb 2024
Amazing tours for Seeing a part of Nicaragua and good giding See de vulcano’s and the city Granada We love also the local food
Truly an amazing experience
Kristin, Feb 2024
The tour was worth it- wish we had a run down of the whole immigration police & customs into Nicaragua - there was no explaining of it. That's was the only little hiccup. Having David as our tour guide was pretty cool and seeing all the different parts of Nicaragua and the welcoming breakfast- which was delicious. Then going to see the Volcano was amazing and getting a horse and carriage was worth it. We stopped at a cigar shop then they took us to a chocolate shop and made our way through the park area were more locals were to buy souvniers. Then had lunch at a really nice restaurant the food there was also really good. David end our tour on a boat ride which was pretty cool and I was able to feed the monkey some papaya. He decided to be greedy n take the entire bag from my hand -lol. But he came back for the other piece it was pretty amazing. Once our tour was over we headed back on the bus & David gifted each of us with our own personalized maraca - that was pretty cool & very pretty. Then back through the customs process once more than a long drive back- mainly because of the traffic. But it was a wonderful experience- truly recommend doing it.
Great Nicaraguan sampler
richardjohnbeck, Feb 2024
Great way to get a quick sample of Nicaragua. Guide and drivers great. Will look to back to Nicaragua for a longer period.
A once in a life experience ☺️
Erika_F, Feb 2024
Great Experience!! Safe and unique! Friendly and helpful people! Recommend!!! Good for shopping and trying new food!
Great day!
Tanja_R, Feb 2024
What a great way to see part of Nicaragua in a day! Our guides were amazing!! Great food, sights and easy to get through customs. Highly recommend
Long Day! Worth Every Minute!
Diego_S, Feb 2024
Wow... This was my mine and my sons highlight of our trip to Costa Rica. It's a long day, but the tour group makes border crossing a breeze, and David was a terrific guide on the Nicaraguan side! The sights were beautiful and the pace was very comfortable! One thing to be aware, on the Nicaraguan side, you are surprised with an added expensive of some additional tours, and the entire group has to agree to participate, which kind of forces you to spend the extra money. I was reluctant, but David convinced me, and I am happy he did! Was lots of fun!
Must book
Kacia_J, Feb 2024
Claudio was our tour guide today and he was amazing. He took us to really cool spots and kept us on schedule so we could see everything. He’s very knowledgeable about the history and he made it funny!
Amazing
Jonathan_O, Jan 2024
We really enjoyed our tour. Our tour guide was so friendly and informative. We received new positive opinions and feelings about Nicaragua. The volcano was incredible and the city of Granada was beautiful. We will be recommending this tour to others who plan on visiting Costa Rica.
Visit another country
Linda_M, Jan 2024
Miguel was a skilled tour leader. He was knowledgeable, kind and attentive. His pride of Nicaragua shown through.The tour company (native way) was also very attentive to all the details in this potentially complex tour; scheduling pickup of people from different locations, (in my case at 4am,). They had a staff person at the office at that time in case a problem arose. The transfer across the border of the group to Miguel went seamlessly. It was a long day but well worth the effort to visit a small part Nicaragua.
BOOK ASAP!
Ayana_S, Jan 2024
I went on a solo trip to Costa Rica but decided to knockout two countries so I booked With this company. I had to pay an extra $50 because my resort was far from where the meeting point was. The guy was on time, we all met then proceeded to the boarder. We had to get a stamp leaving Costa Rica then we walked the boarder which wasn’t bad at all. After getting a stamp in Nicaragua we headed to the bus. They handles our passports which didn’t take long at all! They were so nice, breakfast by the beach was amazing! The horse carriage was great I paid an extra $20 for it. The lunch was amazing!!!! The whole trip was absolutely amazing! It is a long day so be prepared! I was skeptical to book because of the comments but I am so glad I booked! The people, culture, everything! I definitely got my money worth and would do this trip again! Nicaragua is more historic than Costa Rica so a lot of learning! They made me feel safe especially being a solo traveler! They also gave us customized gifts with our names on it!
Fantastic day trip!
MissO_S, Jan 2024
Love every bit of it! Nicaragua was such a plot twist; didn’t expect that it was going to be so stunning! Visiting Granada is like travelling back in time. Beautiful and well preserved colonial city. The carriage ride and the boat trip were so much fun! Food was delicious. Nothing negative to say about this trip apart from the queue to cross the border, but it is what it is. On the way back, there was no queue so it was all fine and dandy . Great guide and very interesting and informative explanations. Great day trip!
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