When it comes to eco-tourism and natural beauty, Costa Rica is a destination that stands out on the world map. This Central American gem is a haven for outdoor enthusiasts, wildlife lovers, and adventure seekers. With its lush rainforests, stunning beaches, and diverse landscapes, a Costa Rica holiday offers something for every type of traveller. Here, we share a list of must-see areas that should be on your Costa Rican itinerary.
Monteverde Cloud Forest Biological Preserve
Nestled in the heart of the country, the Monteverde Cloud Forest Biological Preserve is a must-visit for nature enthusiasts. This misty wonderland is home to a remarkable array of flora and fauna, including the elusive Resplendent Quetzal. The preserve’s extensive network of trails takes you through a magical world of hanging bridges, lush vegetation, and ethereal cloud cover. Don’t forget to explore the treetop canopy walks for a unique perspective of this incredible forest. Surrounded by lush forests but located close to Monteverde’s facilities we highly recommend Cloud Forest Lodge as your base here.
Tortuguero National Park for the Turtles
If you’ve ever dreamed of witnessing sea turtles nesting and hatching, Tortuguero National Park is the place to be. Located on the Caribbean coast, this park is a vital nesting site for green sea turtles, leatherbacks, and hawksbills. Visit between March and October for a chance to witness these incredible creatures in their natural habitat. It’s a truly once-in-a-lifetime experience. Set on a riverbank and surrounded by jungle, Tortuga Lodge and Gardens is a perfect spot for your stay.
Rincón de la Vieja National Park
Adventurers, prepare to be amazed by Rincón de la Vieja National Park. This volcanic wonderland in the Guanacaste region boasts geothermal activity, mud pots, and hot springs. Hike the trails to discover geysers and bubbling volcanic mud, and cool off in the crystal-clear pools and waterfalls. The park offers a thrilling mix of natural beauty and geological phenomena, making it a unique destination in Costa Rica. At Borinquen Thermal resort you can enjoy hot springs, a fantastic spa, canopy tours, walking trails and so much more.
Arenal Volcano National Park
Dominating the skyline with its conical peak, the Arenal Volcano is one of Costa Rica’s most iconic natural attractions. Located in Arenal Volcano National Park, this active volcano is an outdoor enthusiast’s paradise. Hike the well-maintained trails that crisscross the park to witness stunning views, lush rainforests, and the opportunity to relax in natural hot springs warmed by the volcano’s geothermal energy. Stay at The Royal Corin, Arenal Springs Hotel, Nayara Gardens or Amor Arenal.
Ecotermales Fortuna – Hot Springs
A trip to Costa Rica wouldn’t be complete without a visit to the hot springs, and Ecotermales Fortuna near the Arenal Volcano is a standout choice. These relaxing thermal pools are surrounded by lush gardens and offer a serene and natural experience. It’s the perfect way to unwind after a day of exploring the region’s breathtaking natural beauty.
Santa Teresa and Nosara for Surfing
For surfers, Santa Teresa and Nosara are two of the best places to ride the waves in Costa Rica. These coastal towns on the Nicoya Peninsula offer world-class surf breaks, a laid-back atmosphere, and plenty of opportunities to catch the perfect wave. Whether you’re a seasoned pro or a novice, the surf culture and pristine beaches here will make you want to stay forever. Nosura Beach Hotel offers fantastic suites and facilities as well as the perfect locations for surfers of all abilities.
Manuel Antonio National Park
Located on the Pacific coast, Manuel Antonio National Park is a tropical paradise that’s home to diverse wildlife, pristine beaches, and lush rainforests. Visitors often spot monkeys, sloths, and exotic birds while exploring its well-maintained trails. After your hike, cool off in the park’s tranquil coves and bask in the sun on its powdery white sand beaches. Stay at Arenas del Mar for direct beach access and a stylish vibe amongst a private forest reserve.
Chocolate and Coffee Plantation Tours
Costa Rica is famous for its coffee and chocolate, and there’s no better way to experience them than by taking a plantation tour. Learn about the coffee-making process from bean to cup and savour the rich, aromatic brew. Similarly, chocolate lovers can indulge in the cacao experience and see how the “food of the gods” is transformed into delectable treats. These tours provide a delicious and educational insight into Costa Rican culture and cuisine.
Playa Chiquita for Beaches and Snorkeling
Located on the Caribbean coast, Playa Chiquita is a hidden gem with pristine beaches and excellent snorkelling opportunities. The turquoise waters and vibrant coral reefs make it an underwater paradise. Spend your days lounging on the beach, snorkelling among colourful fish, and exploring the surrounding jungle for an unforgettable Costa Rican beach experience.
A Costa Rica holiday is like no other, you can immerse yourself in the wonders of nature and experience thrilling adventures. From volcanic landscapes to serene beaches, this country offers a diverse range of experiences that will leave you with memories to last a lifetime. So, pack your bags and embark on a journey to explore the must-see areas of Costa Rica – a true paradise for travellers seeking a connection with nature.