If you’re looking to experience the best tropical paradise the world has to offer, look no further than Costa Rica. With beautiful beaches, hiking locations, and highly sought-after tourist locations, Costa Rica is the perfect destination for every outdoor lover. With so many unique locations to explore, it can be hard to decide what to plan for your trip. To kickstart your trip planning, here are 5 must see Costa Rica attractions that every visitor should see.
1. Poás Volcano National Park
Poás Volcano National Park is one of the most visited and sought-after locations in the country by tourists. It’s in close proximity to the international airport and only a short trip from San Jose city, which makes it a perfect first stop on your vacation. It features one of the largest craters in the world. You can see this magnificent sight after just a one-day hike to the craters rim, or as a stop on the Doka Estate Coffee tour.
The temperatures around the crater stay mild enough all year round to support the life of gorgeous, green vegetation, which is sure to make the hike even more beautiful. For any outdoor lover this volcanic national park will offer an up close and personal look at one of the most historic volcanic craters still in existence and is sure to be an experience you’ll never forget.
2. Celeste River
This sight will take a bit more hiking to reach, but it’s sure to be worth it. if you haven’t heard of the river, you’ve surely seen pictures of it. the Celeste River is one of the most famous locations in Costa Rica. The river is known for its uniquely colored and breathtaking blue waters which almost appear to be artificially colored.
The hike to the river will last around 3 hours and include a trek through a rainforest, but that 3-hour hike will transport you to a location that feels like a whole new world. Swimming in Tenorio Volcano National Park is prohibited. However, the blue waters of Rio Celeste continue for 14-kilometers, so that means there are sections just as stunning located outside of the park. It is important to note however, that the river does have high levels of Copper Sulfate which are known to irritate skin, so if you choose to swim in the waters of the Celeste, you do so at your own risk.
3. Papagayo Peninsula
This little piece of tropical paradise is one of the best locations for diving tours around Costa Rica that will allow you to experience the underwater world of the country in a very personal way. These tours are great for families, couples, groups, and everything in between. This peninsula is home to not only great diving spots, but also some of the best hotels in Costa Rica.
With sites like Expedia just a click away, you can book a stay at one of the many luxurious Costa Rica Hotels on or around the peninsula. Golf lovers will find numerous different golf courses to spend time on whenever they aren’t relaxing on the beach or going for a dive. It is a bit of a road trip from the international airport to reach this location, but it’s sure to be worth it once you take a look at the majestic views and endless activities.
If you’re a pro surfer, or a beginner looking to learn more, this is the place for you. Tamarindo is a town that offers great nightlife and a surfing culture to rival those found in some of the most famous surf destinations. In Tamarindo there are a variety of hotels and accommodations to fit any budget or itinerary with ease. This location is a gorgeous three-hour drive from the San Jose International Airport and it’s easy to access many of the other must-see locations in Costa Rica that we’ve talked about above.
The cuisine found in Tamarindo is sure to win over any foodie’s heart in a single bite, but there’s tons of restaurants to explore for each night of your stay. The area is filled with shops and stores so you’re sure to find the perfect souvenir to remember your trip by. In Tamarindo, the possibilities are endless. Every day will feel like a new adventure and allow you to fall even deeper in love with Costa Rica while you’re here.
This little piece of paradise was once no more than a simple fishing town, but it quickly gained popularity after the 1980’s. A mellow vibe can be felt around Montezuma, from its residents and guests alike. Montezuma sits within high cliffs and running water, which create unforgettable waterfalls around the town that can be seen from just a short hike away. Transportation is no issue during your vacation to this spot, all hotels, restaurants, shops, and beaches are within walking distance of one another.
If you’re a thrill seeker, there are perfect cliffs for diving located all around Montezuma that fall into the beautiful fresh waters below. Rain forests are endless if you’re looking for a hike to reconnect with nature. Try out local cuisine of the fishing town with locally owned restaurants and feel like a local as you explore the vibrant streets. With an open heart and a daring mind, the opportunities here are endless.
If you’re looking to plan a trip to Costa Rica to experience some of these one of a kind sights, search online for the best deals. Some travel agencies offer incentive pricing if you book your hotel and your trip together.
What destination would you be most excited to visit in Costa Rica? Leave us a comment with your thoughts in the section below.