Challenge level: 4 out of 5
|22 November - 2 December 2018||Sold Out|
|24 January - 3 February 2019||On Sale|
Pump up the volume for our Big Heart Bike Ride in Costa Rica. In this nine-day adventure we cycle from coast to coast to raise funds for the heart charity of your choice.
This is an amazing opportunity to cycle 360 km through one of Central America's most fascinating countries. Our route takes us from Parismina on the eastern Caribbean coast, to the beautiful Playa Hermosa on the Pacific coast. Along the way, we'll experience breathtaking scenery, exotic Caribbean culture and abundant local wildlife and we'll finish with a free day to treat ourselves and explore San Jose.
With a huge amount of fun and friendship along the way, this challenge is open to people of all abilities. Cycling is one of the best ways to explore the country and the most rewarding part is that your participation supports heart charities across the world. You can either fundraise or self fund with a personal donation to your chosen heart charity.
The Big Heart Bike Ride
Funds raised by the Big Heart Bike in Costa Rica will support a number of heart charities. The Big Heart Bike Ride in India 2015 raised an amazing £200,000 for sixteen different heart charities. The Dream Challenges team are here to help you achieve your challenge and will support you all the way. We are on hand from the minute you sign up to answer any questions that you may have about your training or the challenge itself.
Our adventure begins with a flight to San José, where we transfer to our hotel and sleep off our jet lag. Well rested, we wake up on Day 2 and have our morning free to relax at the hotel or explore San José, the capital of Costa Rica. Later, we transfer to our campsite in Finca Pacuarito on the East Coast, where we settle down for a challenge briefing and a group dinner.
Today, after transferring to Parismina, we enjoy a short boat ride down the canal to the sparkling Caribbean Sea. Here, we start our challenge by riding inland, along quiet roads past bustling banana plantations, all the way to the river. We take another short cruise upriver, before hopping back in the saddle and follow a charming, riverside route to our hotel in Guápiles.
We begin today’s ride on a paved road towards the Sarapiqui River, looking out for capuchin monkeys and exotic birds as we go. Pedalling on, we go even more bananas for bananas - and pineapples for that matter, as we pass through lush farms, ripe with fruit and finally reach our hotel in Sarapiqui.
Cycling alongside more of San Carlos’ farms, we see a rainbow of yucca, papaya and pineapples. This gears us up for a testing climb, before we reach flat, paved roads right to Arenal Volcano. We find our hotel tonight in the nearby town, La Fortuna, which is home to some fantastic natural hot springs.
This is a challenging yet beautiful day’s cycle as we ride a hilly route along the north side of Lake Arenal and enjoy views of the volcano, until we reach our hotel in the small town of Tilarán.
Today is an absolute highlight of the trip and we're rewarded for the tough climbs with views of both Arenal and Miravalles Volcano. We notice quite a dramatic change of scenery as we cross over the continental divide and enter the dryer side of Costa Rica, now closer to the Pacific Ocean (and closer to our finish line)!
We start the day with 20 km of joyous downhill cycling, before our route evens out onto flat, paved roads. We follow these all the way to the stunning Playa Hermosa on the Pacific coast. Our hotel sits very close to the beach!
This morning is free to explore Playa Hermosa, relax at the hotel or beach, before transferring to San Jose for the night. Playa Hermosa is a picturesque town with a beach stretching between two mountains. The town is a popular destination for tourists and surfers with shops, restaurants and plenty of water sports activities.
We transfer to the International Airport in San Jose, for our flight back to the UK and arrive on Day 11.
Pay the challenge costs yourself and choose to fundraise or donate as much as you can for your chosen heart charity.
Pay the balance
Pay a non-refundable registration fee and then commit to fundraising the minimum amount.
Minimum sponsorship target
This challenge is not designed for Olympic athletes – it is designed for people looking for an amazing goal to train and get fit for. A number of the people who will take part on this challenge will have little or no fitness level when they sign up. This challenge is the perfect motivation to get fit, lose weight and have an experience of a lifetime.
Please don't be! The majority of people will sign up on their own. Once the event is fully booked we will send you a contact list of everyone registered for the challenge, as often there will be someone in your local area you can meet up to train or fundraise with.
Absolutely not! One of the amazing things about the challenge is that people of all ages will come together to do something very special. The age range is likely to be from 18 to 75.
A cycle helmet is essential and must be worn at all times. Cycling shorts are also recommended and everyone will need their own water bottles or a camel back-type hydration system. Apart from that, no specialist equipment is required. We will supply you with a list of everything you will need to take before you go. Cyclists will have the use of 18 or 21-gear bikes and we suggest you bring the saddle or gel cover you are used to riding on.
We will stay in tourist class hotels in shared rooms throughout the challenge, except for one of the nights, for which we'll camp.
No, your main luggage will be transported each day by our support team. You will need a bag to go on your bike or a waist bag for things like your camera, sun cream, tissues etc. Any extra items you may need during the day can be carried on the support vehicle, which you will have access to during lunch and the snack stops.
Yes of course! If you wish to extend your stay, you will need to come out of our group flights (and of course, we would deduct the cost from your balance).
In addition to paying your registration fee you will need to budget for your airport taxes and the fuel surcharge (currently £350 but subject to change – up or down), personal travel insurance, gratuities, optional tours and personal expenses.
You will need to take out your own personal travel insurance, covering health, accident, loss and repatriation. Dream Challenges has a recommended policy, which we can send you. Otherwise, you can take out your own insurance, providing it covers you for a charity cycle ride in Costa Rica. British nationals don't need a visa to enter Costa Rica. You can stay as a visitor for up to three months.
The Dream Challenges team are here to help you achieve your challenge and will support you all the way. We are on hand from the minute you sign up to answer any questions that you may have about your training or the challenge itself. Once you have registered, we will send you a realistic training programme to help you get fit for the event. The programme builds up gradually as the event gets closer.
“Amazing experience that I'll never forget! It was so well organised and everyone was so enthusiastic.
“The night was amazing! A HUGE thank you too to the marvellous marshals who remained cheerful and helpful.
“We had so much fun, thank you all for giving us the opportunity to take part in a truly incredible event.
“I had such an amazing time, I think it was the most enjoyable ride I have ever done!