COSTA RICA: BLISSFUL | SERENE | 100% PURA VIDA
The Central American country of Costa Rica is a paradise of tropical rain forests, dense cloud forests, and active volcanoes. Touching both the Caribbean Sea and the Pacific Ocean, Costa Rica has nearly 300 different beaches, each unique and beautiful. Home to 5 active volcanoes, natural volcanic hot springs exist throughout the country. It’s no surprise with a country this beautiful that Costa Ricans take every opportunity to enjoy life and to experience 100% pura vida – 100% pure life.
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BEFORE YOU GO
Taxis are good for airport transfers as well as local travel. Flag down a taxi on the street, catch one at an official taxi stand, or call one for pickup at your location. Taxis are red and have a yellow triangle painted on the doors. Private drivers, shared shuttles and public buses are better for all other travel. While some tourists do rent cars, poor road conditions can become a barrier for safe travel.
High-end hotels in Costa Rica range anywhere from tropical boutique to eco-luxury. Whether you’re looking to soak in the healing hot springs or zipline over tree canopies through the rainforest, you will find a hotel eager to cater to your needs.
Costa Rican cuisine is not known for being especially memorable but it is healthy. You’ll find most meals accompanied by the traditional rice and black beans, complemented by an abundance of exotic fruits and vegetables. Expect a mix of chic city restaurants, local roadside sodas (Costa Rica's equivalent of diners), and seafood eateries.
Nightlife in Costa Rica is mostly contained in the San Jose area. From small gatherings at the local karaoke bar to heart-pumping discos with dancers and DJs, you’ll have your choice on where to begin and end your night.
SEE & DO
Considered one of the most bio-diverse regions in the world, there are 20 natural parks, 8 biological reserves, and a series of protected areas that captivate ecotourism lovers. As if that wasn’t enough, you’ll find volcanoes, beaches, mineral springs and thermal waters just about everywhere you go. With these natural features, Costa Rica is one of the most visited destinations in Central America.
Coco's Island - UNESCO
Nature is the inspiration for the spas in Costa Rica. You’ll find many treatments use volcanic mud, coffee beans, and thermal waters. More remote spas will even offer services outdoors in the exotic rainforest. It can’t really get more natural than that.
There aren't many handicrafts that are common to Costa Rica, but you can find authentic souvenirs outside of San José in the smaller markets and provincial shops. Colorful hand-painted ceramic oxcarts as well as bowls or trays hand-hewn from wood make for unique souvenirs.
Costa Rican coffee is a deal and also makes for a great gift. Café Britt is the big name in Costa Rican coffee and is very dependable. For a more interesting experience, take the tour at Doka Estate.
San José does have shopping areas like Mercado Central and Avenida Central, so focus your energy there instead of the many shopping malls.