To many, Costa Rica's charm lies in its lush rainforests, unspoiled beaches, and abundance of wildlife. With breathtaking landscapes and a myriad of creatures—from toucans to monkeys to jaguars—it's easy to see why. Where else can you hike active volcanoes, zip-line through cloud-covered rainforests, and surf warm turquoise waters within the span of a few days? In this compact but diverse tropical paradise, exhilarating outdoor activities abound. Nature-seekers will roam thick ... continue»
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The best time to visit Costa Rica is from mid-December to April (the dry season). This peak tourist season boasts plenty of sunshine, making it an ideal time for exploring rainforests and lounging on beaches. That said, the dry season is the most popular (and expensive) time to visit, although the U.S. dollar goes a long way in Costa Rica no matter the season. You'll have to book your room and tour reservations three months in advance to secure a spot. If you don't mind getting a little wet, visit between May and November when prices are at their lowest. During June and July, rain showers pause briefly, and Costa Rica's forests burst with green foliage.
While planning your trip, keep in mind that the weather varies by region. In the thick forests of the Caribbean Sea coast and Northern Plains, expect high humidity and temperatures ranging between the 70s and high 80s year-round. Conversely, in the North Pacific, prepare for lower humidity levels, but temperatures that often soar into the 90s during Costa Rica's dry months.Best Times to Visit Costa Rica»
The best way to get around Costa Rica is by bus, which is reliable, navigable, inexpensive, and frequently runs through San José. Driving on your own is not highly recommended as some roads are tricky (speckled with potholes and ambiguously marked intersections). A better alternative to renting your own set of wheels is hiring a car-and-driver service recommended from your hotel, so you can enjoy the country's gorgeous scenery without having to tackle challenging roads with confusing signage. For a hassle-free means of getting to downtown San José from the Juan Santamaría International Airport (SJO), you'll want to flag a taxi. If you're planning to explore Guanacaste and the Nicoya Peninsula in the northwest part of Costa Rica, you can easily hail a taxi from the Daniel Oduber Quirós International Airport (LIR).Getting Around Costa Rica»