The best months are August and September but in Uvita, you have a chance to see them from July – November and January – April since both northern and southern humpback whales pass through. Can’t wait to get there, Hi Karen, you can book everything through the Riu: tours, shuttles, transportation, etc. Instead of gallo pinto, they eat rice and beans which has coconut milk in it. So many amazing hidden spots! Find out the top things to do in Costa Rica including ziplining through the cloud forest and hiking to waterfalls, to seeing incredible wildlife. Wow this is such an extensive list. There are two safari floats from La Fortuna: Penas Blancas, the most common one. Solo female traveler. They offer guided tours of the center so you can learn about how they are working to help animals such as monkeys, anteaters, sloths and various birds. And there are so many hidden, boat access only beaches in the Gulf of Papagayo that you can have all to yourself! This is such a fantastic list that would be a must-read for anyone visiting Costa Rica!! And yes, are all these places you mentioned in the article in a same place or different places in and around? Definitely one of the top things to do in Monteverde Costa Rica. I haven’t looked into things in great detail but some of the things I’m thinking of doing are: Arenal, Tamarindo, Rincon de la Viejo, Monteverde cloud forest, Guanacasta, Rio Pacuare, Manuel Antonio national park. Use our interactive map to see tours, activities and places. Recommended companies are Antares and Dream Chaser in Tamarindo, Kuna Vela and Sea Bird in Playas del Coco, Panache and Lazy Lizard in Potrero, Serendipity in Flamingo, Samara Sea Tours in Samara and Marlin del Rey in Coco and Tamarindo. I’ve already mentioned a few waterfalls in this post but I can’t forget the majestic Nauyaca waterfalls! And all beaches are public by law so it’s one of the best cheap activities to do in Costa Rica. You need to reserve the spot, the best way to contact them is through their Facebook. Baldi is best for kids, Tabacon is ideal for couples and Paraiso and Ecotermales are great for those who don’t want to be around a lot of people. Usually 1 or 2 days in San Jose is a good amount of time to visit museums or local markets. And even though it was free I have to say it was amongst my favourite Monteverde … Definitely try to do as much of the list, Costa Rica has a ton of fun stuff to do! Since coffee grows best in higher altitudes, the best places for coffee tours are San Jose, Grecia, Heredia, Turrialba and Monteverde. Things to Do in Costa Rica, Central America: See Tripadvisor's 1,534,254 traveller reviews and photos of Costa Rica tourist attractions. Wow! Definitely ask us if you have any questions when you go! You can find vendors at nearly every beach and it costs around 500 colones a pipa fria. Costa Rica is pretty awesome ð Hope you get to experience it soon!! I’m wondering about car rentals? The country is home to several active volcanoes, large areas of protected jungle teeming with unique … We have visited and it was a wonderful experience. Hi Barbara, that’s definitely way too many places for only 4 days and all the destinations are very far apart for driving (arenal – monteverde around 3.5 hours, monteverde to MA is 5, MA to Uvita is around 1.5 and Uvita back to San Jose is around 3.5-4). Fabulous post. Along the way, it’s possible to see various birds, monkeys and other wildlife and it’s great to go with a guide who can point out the different plants and flowers you see. I will back soon. The most popular one is from La Leona to Sirena where it’s possible to see tapirs, pumas, anteaters and more. You can hike through Tenorio Volcano National Park to see the waterfall and the union of the two rivers which creates the blue color. If you want to see monkeys in Costa Rica, Manuel Antonio National Park is one of the best places and we highly recommend a guided walk! I am planning a trip to CR for December. It’s been on my bucket list but after we sold our car, it’s hard to get there from Coco just by bus and they had closed one of the entrances to re-do the road. Then if you go for lunch, you can order a casado which is a plate of rice, beans, salad, meat and usually plantains or a picadillo or some sort. Food and travel go hand in hand and food is for us, the ultimate way to know a country’s culture. The most common months are Christmas time, July, February and March. There are several companies that operate waterfall tours like this one in the Central Pacific. Life’s good, pura vida. 27% of the country's landmass is devoted to national parks and reserves and much of the tourist industry has a sustainable ethos – from stunning eco-lodges, environment-friendly tours … Explore the rainforests 14) Go to Doggy Paradise They’re usually a small, open air family run restaurant serving only Costa Rican food. The highlights for me were probably visiting the Arenal/La Fortuna area, la catarata there, and really just enjoying everything that makes la vida de pura vida so wonderful. We’re planning a visit (for three weeks!) If you’re looking for more of the best things to do in Costa Rica, I recommend Puerto Viejo de Talamanca, where I encountered the country’s wildest nightlife. Cheer for the local teams and experience one of the country’s favorite past times. Visit top-rated & must-see attractions. For a more intimate and personal experience, Rio Frio is quite special. The view inside the crazy beautiful Fiscus Tree. It’s a great activity for all travelers, especially couples. The jungle changes drastically when the sun goes down and the best way to experience it is to go for a guided night walk (you don’t want to be wandering the forest on your own!). So when you are in Costa Rica, make sure to go to a soda, which is what the locals call a traditional restaurant. But aside from that, I love going zip lining and snorkeling. I loved all your pics and info. The best places for whale watching is down in Uvita, Drake Bay and Gulf of Papagayo. From the beautiful beaches of Playa Tambor and the dramatic scenery of the Arenal area to the remarkably rich biodiversity of the Monteverde Cloud Forest, it was like no place I’d ever been before. A copo is a delicious Costa Rican shaved ice treat. I loved the one in Leavenworth (if you’ve done that one) but the water was too cold to jump in. Among the top things to do in Guanacaste Costa Rica is to go for a Safari Float on the Corobici River. The Gulf of Papagayo up in the north Pacific coast of Costa Rica is in our opinion, one of the most beautiful places in Costa Rica. Including Driftwood Beach, Red Beach , and Padar Island. The landscapes in Costa Rica are simply breathtaking and you can see views just like this driving through the Central Valley. I’ve always wanted to do number 34 as well as an avid coffee consumer. We are looking into visiting Costa Rica in December of 2017. Discovered your site after visiting CR in February and have been following ever since. Sure you can buy mangoes at your local supermarket anywhere in the U.S. but they don’t come with cross-cut inside-out opening demonstrations as they might from a roadside stand in Costa Rica. You may get lucky and see wildlife without one, but for (almost) guaranteed sightings, it’s best to hire a guide. Glad to give you some ideas ð. I hope you can answer my questions. I will be in CR end of Jan for 10 days and looking into spending time a few days in Manuel Antonio and wondering about using public transportation from San Jose and recommendations on where to stay? I would like to try canyoning and rafting the Pacuare next time I’m there. It’s such a cute little town for a less touristy destination to experience local culture. Costa Rica is very family friendly and there’s a lot to do everywhere but for your specific requests, I’d look into Gulf of Papagayo (families love Playas del Coco and Playa Panama) as you’re close to beaches, volcanoes and hiking and there’s great seafood of course. I am going to costa rica for one week in November. The best is Wednesday nights- 9.00 pp gets you all you can eat salad, spaghetti and pizza plus a new current movie. So where are your top choices? Sky Tram at Arenal and Monteverde are excellent ones and Rainforest Adventures Park on both the Caribbean and Jaco sites have a tram. We’ll do our best ð. I am book marking this one. How far is Territorio de zaquates from guancaste region? Watersliding in the jungle was so much fun! Hmm honestly we don’t know where we’ll be at that time but we’re leaving Coco for good in a couple of months. About Contact Blog. Stand up paddle boarding is very popular in Costa Rica and you can rent a board and go on your own or take a class. Would we able to do many of the adventures you’ve listed above? Thanks guys. The best way to experience the Gulf of Papagayo to the fullest is a private boat tour. Thanks for the list. They also have live music on Sundays. Must Do Tours in Costa Rica. Rafting the Pacuare was an amazing experience right? Tortuguero National Park, or the “Amazon of Costa Rica” is a place like no other in the country. Sister plane of the C-123 shot down during the Iran-Contra Affair has found a new purpose in retirement. I’m not a huge yoga fan but I know some people who are obsessed and they love doing it in Costa Rica. The best time to go to Ostional WIldlife Refuge is July – December and is one of the best things to do in Costa Rica in November as that is when the biggest arribadas occur. These two stunning waterfalls lie deep in the rainforest up in the mountains of Dominical and it’s an incredible place to visit! My favourite was rafting the Pacuare and eating gallo pinto everyday. Some great suggestions in here for sure! Funny thing is i was not even planning to go. We climbed through the virgin Costa Rican forest up 7 waterfalls, jumping off a few and standing under more. You can still do the activities but make sure you do all of them early in the morning as it usually starts raining by afternoon. A quick look at the Central Valley map will easily show you how adventure-packed your itinerary can get – … Things to Do in Costa Rica, Central America: See Tripadvisor's 1,534,197 traveller reviews and photos of Costa Rica tourist attractions. Rincon is one of our favorite places too, glad you guys love it and that we could help stir up some good memories ð, Did mostly everything mentioned in here, pura vida! White water rafting was amazing. As one of the most biologically diverse places on earth, Corcovado National Park is an absolute must for hikers and wildlife lovers. Mytanfeet is full of local tips, detailed guides, photos, videos and maps to help you plan the perfect âtrip to Costa Rica. One of Costa Rica’s most magical places is Rio Celeste, a sky blue river in Tenorio Volcano National Park. My friends and I are looking to stay in San Jose. You will be surprised by some of the unique things to do and places you can explore at this hidden destination. One of the best activities we’ve done so far in Costa Rica. We’ve done a good handful of ziplines in Costa Rica but each one is different! It’s an unforgettable experience and let’s be real. Costa Rica is one of my favorite places in the world. We will be there in May for 10 nights. These fiestas are held all year long throughout the country and you will see signs for them in town. Manuel Antonio National Park is one of the best places in Costa Rica to see wildlife thanks to its year long lush rainforest. Good list to save for when I get to Costa Rica ð. Costa Rican accommodation resembles a crash site, but with a nice balcony. and little beach. The Sea Turtle Conservancy is also found here and runs a research … Veragua, a research center and adventure park on the Caribbean coast has an aerial tram too. It’s actually nice to go and wander around San Jose, it’s fun to see all the city Ticos just doing their thing, much different than the beach. Those crocodiles are waiting to be fed and you do not want to be their next dinner. We have reviews of the best places to see in Costa Rica. Check out our Expert travel advice for the best things to do in and around San Jose city! This is really cool and definitely makes me want to explore Costa Rica. I am hoping we can find a boating excursion that doesn’t have an age minimum, as well as maybe horseback riding. The best extreme ziplining in Costa Rica is at 100% Aventura in Monteverde, Sky Adventures Monteverde and Arenal, Selvatura Park in Monteverde, Arenal Mundo Aventura in La Fortuna, Diamante Eco Adventure Park in Guanacaste. It’s an experience that will make you appreciate nature even more. This is one of the most relaxing and romantic things to do in Costa Rica. This brings back awesome memories. If you’re interested in learning more about the city, take a San Jose city tour. The bridge is in the town of Tarcoles, a little bit before Jaco and it’s worth stopping to see the giant crocodiles. Costa Rica has a lot of holidays and they sure do love to party! ð, If you were really really adventurous probably a few months! They are currently closed right now though and don’t have any public walks schedule for 2018 so far. And also looking forward to using Adobe rentals for our car! Also are there shuttles from airport to hotels or do have to arrange them in advance? If you continue to use this site we will assume that you are happy with it. Snorkeling is so much fun there! Now, many bars and restaurants serve craft beer! I would cut out a couple places, for only 7 full days we usually recommend two destinations. Therefore, if you love the ocean, snorkeling or scuba diving is definitely a must do in Costa Rica! As the capital city, it’s the best way to get a glimpse of the typical Costa Rican city life. This neon blue river gets its color from a unique mix of bacteria and volcano minerals. Costa Rica is a smaller but beautiful upcoming tourist destination that is worth a visit. Hi Robert, yes it will be the transition time from rainy to dry. So, is February good time to visit Costa Rica? ð, Hi Stuart, the path from the entrance to the volcano is really easy, it’s a nice concrete trail actually and not very steep. It’s even more fun in the rainy season when you can get a bit muddy! One of our favorite canoyning tours in Costa Rica is Pure Trek in La Fortuna. Thank you! Once in Tortuguero, you can take boat rides through the national park to see wildlife but our favorite way is to go by kayak. On both coasts, you can see mother turtles nesting and baby turtles hatching. Anyone been in June and disagree? I looooved my short time in Costa Rica and can’t wait to go back. Enjoying the pura vida lifestyle… drinking pipa… But you know, I really agree with you when you say San Jose isn’t that bad. You can find snorkeling tours in nearly all touristic coastal towns. We have a Phantom 3 DJI drone with 4k camera we use for aerial shots. Love it. Check out our list of 50 best things to do in Costa Rica. I actually have never heard of a Rastafarian beach here…you could ask around to the locals, they will probably know. Engulfed with the Tropical Dry Gallery Forest packed with giant fig trees, you can spot monkeys, crocodiles, iguanas, and … Should I rent a small car (no 4wd)? We did a chocolate tour with the BriBri indigenous community outside Puerto Viejo which was fascinating since chocolate plays such an important part in their culture. You should ð let us know if you need any information have a great day ! Sloth rehabilitation center in the jungle of Costa Rica. We are family of five with teenagers. Love your story! We drove through Zarcero, Sarchi, Grecia and San Ramon and it was a fantastic way to see small town life, taste local goods and experience a less touristic area in Costa Rica. Leaving for CR in 4 days. 1. It’s cold coconut water and is oh so delicious on a hot day! If you are in the Papagayo/Tamarindo area and need transportation, feel free to email Randall from Shaman Tours, a tour company operating in that area. There’s still tons more to do which we hope to do in the future! It’s so picturesque with the church and volcano in the backdrop! This Pennsylvanian Winter Cocktail Is Sweet, Spicy, and Possibly Explosive, The Danish Christmas Porridge That Appeased a Vengeful 'House Elf', When in Drought, Ancestral Puebloans Turned to Ice Blocks in Lava Tubes, How a Blacksmith in Jordan Created His Own Sign Language, In Naples, Praying With Skulls Is an Ancient Tradition, Inside a Domed Pyramid With Astounding Acoustics and a History of Miracles, See the Mysterious Horned Helmet of Henry VIII, Searching for Home and Connection Through Typewritten Poetry. For the hardcore birders, stay at one of the eco lodges built specifically for birding such as Maquenque Lodge, Villa Lapas or Selva Verde Lodge. We don’t recommend swimming and leaving your things at a beach where there is nobody because it only takes a minute for the thieves to take your stuff and unfortunately, beach theft is something to be concerned about if you are going to an empty beach. You can read our post 6 reasons why we love rainy season here: Why visit Costa Rica in rainy season and to prepare yourself for rainy season we have a packing list here: Rainy season packing list Costa Rica. Love this list! There are many volunteer programs available if you want to do some charity work and help Costa Rica protect their beloved turtles. If you’re in the Brasilito/Tamarindo area, the fiestas are usually mid March. Costa Ricans love this dish! in April next year. The park sits on a sandbar on the country’s northern Caribbean coast. Pura vida is the slogan of Costa Rica and directly translated to English it means pure life. Crazy! Micro-breweries are popping up all throughout the country which is great for beer lovers. I went through the list and ended up with around 30 that I’d love to do/experience! About the only thing I would add is “Take a flight on Nature Air.” Little planes, big windows, beautiful scenery. Do you think we have enough time for all the stops? Try it, really works. What website can I purchase/make reservations. You can find them on facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Ultralight-Tours-Gyrocopter-Rides-Costa-Rica/493136747370929. It’s covered in rainforest and considered a major nesting site for green turtles. It seems this may be the end of the rainy season, or not? However, if you go to areas like Guanacaste, the rainy season is shorter and usually arrives later, so there’s a good chance you won’t run into rain in June in that area. Costa Rica grows some of the best coffee in the world, hands down. Head to the bar to have a beer and you’ll also get a great glimpse into Tico life since beer is heavily ingrained in their culture. 2. Combo adventure tours are one of our favorite things to do in Guanacaste. How Did Madagascar Become the World's Biggest Producer of Vanilla? Delicious! Other good restaurants are the Z lounge and on the beach Bamboo. Travelers favorites include #1 Nicoya Peninsula, #2 Arenal Volcano and more. It’s an awesome day tour that allows you to experience the best of the volcano and dry tropical forest. I don’t mind summer rains and drizzles, as long as they are not heavy and daily and impact my ability to explore beautiful CR. You will also see a brown sauce on the table called “Salsa Lizano.” It’s Costa Rica’s classic sauce and I recommend to put some on your pinto. A sedan will do for those destinations. Page is now bookmarked ð, Awesome!! The sunset sailing cruises mentioned above also offers opportunities to snorkel during the cruise. The best time to take a Costa Rica coffee tour is October – March as that is the production and harvest season. And don’t forget to visit Arenal Volcano National Park for close views of the volcano! In these parties, they have rides, games, food and bull riding. How did you guys every narrow it down to 50? So many. Visit top-rated & must-see attractions. Hi Priscilla! Thaks for this blog! If you’re visiting La Fortuna, going to the hot springs is a must! The first waterfall they take you to is nearly 200 feet tall! I use it mostly to clean my face, but now I find that works better then anything else on my legs! Hi, In Manuel Antonio, Paddle 9 operates waterfall tours and in Uvita, Rancho Di’Andrew runs waterfalls tours. San Jose Costa Rica is a great place to begin a vacation. This gulf, made made up of many small bays has a myriad of boat access only white sand beaches and amazing snorkeling spots. I saw your list in perfect timing…I’m trying to make up my mind on where to move abroad in January! And spent a whole week there just because it was so chilled ð. They have private classes and lessons, and multiple day retreats. El Viejo also offers cultural and rum tours for a full day of wildlife and culture! The best ones to see are Arenal, Turrialba, Irazu and Poas Volcano. Best destinations in Costa Rica for 1st timers, 10 mistakes to avoid traveling in Costa Rica, 15 things to know before you visit Costa Rica, 2 week Costa Rica itinerary for first timers. For this reason, you can find fiestas civicas, or the local parties all year long. One of the main reasons travelers are traveling is for that unique experience. Other places we like to people watch is at Plaza de la Democracia in San Jose, the boulevard and park in Playas del Coco, topiary gardens in Zarcero, the park in front of the red church in Grecia and in front of Amy’s Restaurant in Monteverde. As a nature lover, I was blown away by all the things to do in Costa Rica. People from all over the world come to Costa Rica just to surf. (Get 10% off in the link above for any Diamante adventure). I hope you have a great time there!! I was just wondering if you knew if this were true or not? To enjoy a fun night out in San Jose full of Costa Rican culture and local food, a dinner show is a great option. All prices listed below are in USD. For those who aren’t big hikers or can’t do a lot of strenuous movements, the tram is the best way to experience the tropical jungle. Find out what the best beaches in Costa Rica are! Spend some time and float down the Corobici or Tenorio River for two hours on a raft boat. You’ll know it’s a soda because the sign outside will say something like “Soda Teresa” or Soda “X” Name. It’s such a beautiful country!! Visiting Arenal Volcano is a must when in La Fortuna! Hello! You will definitely have a blast in Costa Rica, and this list is just the beginning of soo many more fun things to do. It’s definitely helping me plan my CR trip and getting me so excited!
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