The fine coastal island of Costa Rica is greatly defined by its rich and fertile volcanic soil found along its central highlands where most of the world’s finest coffee beans are grown. On either side of the highlands lie the tropical lowlands. The Caribbean lowlands are swampy, but the Pacific Plains are ideal for growing fruit.
This popular tourist destination in Central America is surrounded by beautiful beaches along the waters of the Caribbean Sea and the Pacific Ocean. There are also numerous volcanic sites that can be safely visited ad well as its share of old museums, religious festivities and old churches. It has also gained prominence as one of the countries that has successfully preserved its natural resources, rainforest, historical and natural parks.
Hiking the challenging trails along the Chirripo National Park offers a unique experience of being one with nature, the satisfaction when one reaches the top, survival from going up and down the hilly roads, and strong determination. It is definitely a challenging hike that tourists with adventurous soul must do. The tour takes several days to explore all the beautiful sites and views that can be found inside this national park. The trail climbs from 1500 up to 3400m and the topmost view has shelters where one can stay overnight. You must come prepared as the shelters do not offer any hot water or blankets .You have to climb prepared and fully equipped with weatherproof equipments especially during the rainy season. The summit is 3820 meters and it is the highest point in Costa Rica where you can see the Caribbean Sea and the Pacific Ocean.
Located less than an hour from the capital of Alajueala, a visit to the Volcan Poas is definitely a must while you are in San Jose. Once you reach this magnificent national park, you will notice the change in climate along with the cool air and cold mountain. Bring comfortable clothes, tennis, and if possible a rain jacket. You have to walk a little to be able to see the huge crater and experience the sulfur smell that rules the air around this attraction. And if you want to see more, you must hike for another 30 minutes so you can see the beautiful lagoon which rises at times through the haze. It only takes half a day to tour around this park but it is truly intense and definitely unforgettable.
The Ruinas de Ujarras are ruins of a Catholic church built in the colony during the seventeenth century as part of the Spanish domination. Today it is a quiet, and solemn green areas to rest, explore and nice to go with friends. It is a free attraction that has accessible pathways for persons with disabilities.
La Fortuna de San Carlos
For the adventurous ones, the Ecoglide Arenal Park is a not to be missed experience. Aside from the fact that they have a great Zip Line, it should be noted that the team is super nice, the security is super top (there are two cables: one for roulette and another strap for security). The scenery is great because it is all trees down below and a good view of the oceans from afar. This is not the longest or the highest in Costa Rica but it has a great atmosphere when you reach the middle of the forest. The Tarzan jump is worth trying and the staff will document and record your experience after the jump with a personal CD. This attraction is not for the faint of heart and you must sign a waiver before trying any climb or extreme sport adventure.
The La Fortuna Waterfall can be visited in a couple of hours but you will be rewarded with the great spectacle of falling water that mixes with the color of the river making it a beautiful attraction. Be very careful as the path to go down to the waterfall is very steep and slippery.
The park of the Tenorio Volcano is a little more sheltered than the tourist itineraries but in the end is perhaps one of the most beautiful places of Costa Rica. The walking path instead depends on the situation of the land. Bring along a convenient hiking boots as the road has a great tendency to get muddy especially when the rains come in. The walk is pleasant and some animals can be seen along the way especially birds, and then you get to the Rio Celeste (Celeste River) and the color and atmosphere shifts dramatically into an enchanting place. The tour includes a visit to a wide waterfall and concludes at the confluence of 2 rivers that transform the water into a blue watercolor stripe. The final reward is a small dip in the spa pool that has formed along the course of the enchanting river. The Rio Celeste is certainly one of Costa Rica’s best hiking trails. The river is turquoise blue and looks very serene and natural.
The Tamarindo Beach is a small coastal town located in Guanacaste that is filled with resorts and tropical landscape with several options for lodging and food. The beach is wide, the water during the day is warm, there are huge palm trees providing enough shade, and the sand is fine and quite clear.
It is an ideal beach to learn how to surf as there are several schools and certified instructors around the area. The sunset is gorgeous! Do not miss each day. It is one of the most beautiful beaches in Costa Rica that is not to be missed.
When in Jaco a visit to the Pura Vida Gardens and Waterfalls is definitely a must. The beautiful view of the sea is breathtaking from an incredible location. The gardens are well maintained and in perfect condition. The beautiful and exotic place offers a huge selection of plants and flowers that are well cared of and in perfect condition. The pathways and sidewalks are greatly adorned by rare orchids and hundred year old trees. The biggest reward is the view of the waterfall after a long and winding path to reach its location. Enjoy a great meal as the water from the fall cascade and amuse its curious travelers and visitors. While en route to the falls do not miss checking out the aviary and reptile park that can be found along the way to this famous attraction.
Jaco Beach is a paradise for lovers of the sea and the waves. Currently the city has everything you need for any tourist with varied budgets from 5 star hotels to camping areas. You can ask any family activity for Spanish classes and surf to your heart’s content on its marvelous waters.
The beauty of Playa Santa Teresa lies in the awesome waves it offers surfers and water sports enthusiasts to keep coming back for more. Not only these places are distinguished by this, they also offer a wonderful scenic beauty that numerous resorts and hotel development owners are encouraged to invest and build accommodations that will fit to suit all tastes and budgets. A beach with white sand, waves and where you can safely go around and just enjoy a good walk and take a break from the hustle and bustle of everyday life.
When you are in Santa Teresa, allow the time to pass slowly and appreciate every activity that nature offers like the monkeys, iguanas, and all kinds of birds. The best restaurants, cafes and a quiet local atmosphere. It is a nice place indeed.
The El Pinto Horseback Riding Expedition is an experience that will give your trip an extra spice. Marvin is a very nice guide and grooms all the horses in their stable perfectly. It is clear that he knows a lot about horses as he know their animals well and care a lot about them. The package tour includes a ride on their great horses, through the jungle and along the Montezuma’s beautiful sandy beaches. The ride extends up to the Montezuma Waterfall attractions and a chance to feed the horses with fruits.
At the Montezuma falls, the hike is not very easy since there are no designated pathways or trails to reach it. But once you arrived at the waterfall you will be pleased with the cool refreshment and enjoy the magical atmosphere of its beautiful surroundings. Plus the horseback riding activity is great for groups of friends or family.
Puerto Viejo de Talamanca
The Foundation Jaguar Rescue Center situated at the Puerto Viejo de Talamanca is the right facility where injured and harassed wildlife animals are collected and treated so that they can go back well and good to their natural habitat. There are two tours held on a day and others can book ahead via an appointment to their receptionist and staff. The wildlife animal tour is headed by the English-speaking tour guide named Margaret. She can tell a lot about the life stories of the different animals and take the time to answer questions. It makes a big impression. At the rescue center there are many young volunteers who are obviously very concerned about the situation and the condition of the animals. There is plenty of opportunity to make great pictures. There are no jaguars inside this rescue center, but it has many other native animals. Also good are the postcards they sell; beautiful pictures against a white background of the residents. The center is worth a visit. It is also suitable for small children to visit.
A visit to the Caribeans Coffee and Chocolate Factory will give you a whole new perspective on chocolate, taste and production. The tour that is done in both English and Spanish is very instructive plus you will also get to taste and meet with the organic cocoa and coffee plantation. The Chocolate tour starts with a walk on the property, in which Paul explains the origin of the project and expressed his knowledge on cocoa and the process of transforming it. Once at the top of the hill, you have the opportunity to enjoy a fantastic view of the coast until Manzanillo, and taste different types of chocolate products on site, and even make some culinary experiences. The tour ends where it commenced and you will leave with a small chocolate offered by the host.
Playas del Coco
For a change in water sports adventure and surfing ideas, try the Star Paddle Costa Rica. It is a great way to see the rest of the ocean through the use of a paddle and a board where you can stand and admire the views as you row.
This offshore rowing activity not only makes you one with nature but is also a good workout exercise to keep one fit and healthy.
Discover more wildlife sanctuary and animals on a visit to the Nosara Wildlife Rescue. The sanctuary owners Steve and Vicky are concerned mostly with howler monkeys that have been orphaned or injured through un – insulated power lines. In a Refuge, the animals are nursed and prepared at the Sanctuary while waiting to be released back into the wild as soon as possible.
In addition, they are committed to ensuring that the cables are insulated to protect the monkeys. The highlight of the sanctuary was the visit to the monkeys. These are impressive animals that must be protected.
Enjoy canopy tree adventure and avail of it from the Canopy Vista Los Suenos. It is the kind of an adventure where stress remains in the back of your mind as you get strapped and secured to try the Zip line adventure. It is an excellent experience. The assigned outdoor sport staffs are all very well trained and attentive and always stress the importance of safety.
Even kids can have a grand time and enjoy this adventure attraction. On this attraction you can conquer your own fear, gain confidence and become a stronger person that is completely unafraid of heights.