Costa Rica

Where to go

Costa Rica is a small tropical country in Central America.  It is a nature-lover’s paradise with beautiful national parks as well as wonderful beaches on both its Pacific and Caribbean coasts.  The nearest beach is 1½ hours’ drive from the capital city of San Jose.  Costa Rica is a democratic, peaceful country and prides itself on supporting health and education rather than an army.  It has no army and its national health scheme was set up in 1942.  Its literacy rate is 93%, one of the highest in Latin American. 

 Highlights of the country include:

  • Monteverde Cloud Forest, home to more than 100 species of mammals and more than 400 species of birds
  • Arenal Volcano.  Set in the tropical, green lowlands, the perfect cone-shaped Arenal Volcano is one of the most active volcanoes and you can often see the glowing hot lava erupting at night.
  • Tortuguero National Park, the most important site in the entire western half of the Caribbean where the green turtle nests.
  • Manuel Antonio National Park - one of the loveliest parks in Costa Rica where the tall evergreen forest reaches right down to the high tide mark on the beach.
  • The Osa Peninsula on Costa Rica’s southern Pacific coast with its pristine rainforests and rugged natural beauty.

 

What to do

  • Visit Costa Rica’s national parks and choose to walk through a rainforest on the Pacific coast, hike to the rim of a volcano or watch giant sea turtles nest along the beach at Tortuguero.
  • Choose the beach holiday to suit you – enjoy the white sand and intense blue sea of the calm Gulf of Papagayo or go surfing at Tamarindo Beach.
  • Take a canopy tour over the Monteverde Cloud Forest and observe the wildlife and views from the suspension bridges and zip lines high above the rainforest.
  • Explore the Manuel Antonio National Park, home to the white-faced capuchin, mantled howler and red-backed squirrel monkeys, two- and three-toed sloths, and a large number of species of birds. 
  • Visit the jungle and canals of the Tortuguero National Park on the Caribbean coast and see the leatherback turtles and green turtles nesting on the Caribbean beach.
  • Go white water rafting in the Orosi Valley, close to San Jose.

 


View Latin America in a larger map


When to go

Costa Rica has a tropical climate with a wet season (the green season) running from April to November.  For beach lovers, the best time to visit is during the dry season from December to March although it is worth remembering that during the wet season the rain tends to come in showers in the afternoon and you will still have plenty of sunshine!  Temperatures vary little during the year with an average of 24°C although temperatures drop at altitude in the Monteverde Cloud Forest and it is hot and humid on the coast.

 

Currency and money

Colon.  ATMs are easily available in larger towns.   US Dollars are generally also accepted throughout the country except in small villages.

 

Cuisine

There is a wide variety of cuisines.  Fresh fruit and vegetables are always available and fish from both oceans is in abundance.  And a meal must always end with a delicious steaming cup of Costa Rican coffee, one of the best coffees in the world!

 

Hotels

A good range of hotels from superb deluxe resorts on the Pacific Coast’s Gulf of Papagayo to simple privately owned hotels on the Caribbean coast as well as independent eco-lodges and volcano lodges set in beautiful gardens.


Where to go next

Combine Costa Rica with a beach extension to Panama’s Bocas del Toro – it is just a 25 minute private transfer from the Costa Rican border to this laid back Caribbean archipelago.  Or visit Nicaragua’s colonial cities of Leon and Granada in the north.  The Nicaraguan border is an easy transfer from Costa Rica’s beach resorts on the north Pacific coast. 

TACA Airlines offer a superb service and speedy, convenient connections within Central America and other South American countries.  A Star Alliance member, TACA also has a hub in Lima and the flight time to San Jose is just 3 ½ hours, making Costa Rica the perfect beach destination at the end of a Peruvian touring holiday!

 

Links

Saspo’s partner office in Costa Rica is Viatur.  For further information please see their website at www.viaturtravel.net


Contact:    TEL: +44 20 8123 1827   Mobile: +44 7989 982 210   Email: Info@saspoUK.com