We have spent many years exploring Costa Rica and have complied information about the best Costa Rica vacation destinations to make your vacation planning easier. We can help you decide where to stay in Costa Rica. Costa Rica is a beautifully diverse country with so much to see and do. We can also suggest the best places to visit in Costa Rica. In fact, many people decide to travel throughout the country, choosing 2 -3 destinations for a 7 to 10 day-long Costa Rica vacation. Others decide to stay in one place to get to know the area and culture. The choice is up to you! Once you know where you want to go, we can help you choose activities, hotels and transport. Our well-traveled Adventure Specialists will help you plan the perfect Costa Rica vacation and you the best places where to stay in Costa Rica!
Monteverde, which translates to "green mountain", is a peaceful mountaintop community unlike any other destination in Costa Rica. Located on the crest of the mountain-range overlooking the Pacific Coast, the altitude creates a natural phenomenon completely unique: in the morning and evening the "cloud forests" on the edge of town are filled with a fog-like mist that engulfs the foliage as clouds literally move through the trees. Here you can also go birdwatching for the elusive Quetzal, and take on many more adventures.
Nosara is a beach-town well-known between locals and expats from all over the world. In fact, it is one of the oldest expatriate communities in the country. The town itself is a simple town with basic amenities, but the beach is what makes this locale such a destination. In the area surrounding, there are several other beach communities: Playa Guiones, Playa Pelada, Playa Ostinal. We highly recommend these other towns, as their beaches are ideal for surfing and their adjoining towns have more to offer.
With swaying palm trees and white-sand overlooking the crystal blue water of the pacific ocean, lose yourself in paradise as you find yourself at Playa Ocotal. This gorgeous beach provides many opportunities for ocean and land activities and a range of hotel options for your stay.
The Osa Peninsula proudly holds the title of the most biologically diverse place in the world, and is one of the most unique and remote destinations to visit in Costa Rica. The dense tropical rainforest and flowing rivers are untouched by tourism or industry, which is why it's nature is so robust. People even still pan for gold and cash in their treasures or trade it for food!
Puerto Viejo de Sarapiqui holds a special place in our hearts, as it is where we were first going out on rafting excursions thirty years ago before we started this company. Sarapiqui offers incredible class II-IV rapids, and whether you are an experienced rafter or have always wanted to try, come to Saraqpiqui and see the region that made us first fall in love with this country. Beyond rafting, Sarapiqui offers many amazing hikes through the forest, perfect for birdwatching and wildlife spotting.
Puerto Viejo is located on the south-eastern part of Costa Rica and sits on the Caribbean Ocean. This eclectic town is a melting-pot where typical Tico culture melds with Afro-Caribbean influences. After a day on the wide sandy beaches and calm blue seas known throughout the Caribbean, explore town to dine at one of many international restaurants. Pro-tip: You can’t leave this town without trying the traditional Caribbean-Tico fare: coconut milk “rice and beans”, jerk chicken, Caribbean stew, and fresh fish.
Rincón de la Vieja has been a protected since 1973 and has 9 active craters and a well-visited volcano along the ridge of Costa Rica's "ring of fire". It is becoming more and more popular to visit as people are discovering its impressive geothermic activity with bubbling fumarole pools, volcanic geysers and natural hot springs! Pro-tip: DON’T take the lava rocks! We’ve heard tales of terrible luck that follows rock thieves, and these areas have piles of stolen rocks returned via-post to try and escape the curse!
Samara is a laid-back bohemian beachside community, known for the friendly people, mix of cultures, and variety of activities that make this place so special. Samara offers new activities like yoga and stand-up paddle boarding as well as Costa Rican favorites like surfing, river kayaking and horseback riding. After adventuring, enjoy an assortment of hotels and restaurants right on the beach. We're still dreaming about the fish tacos we ate with our toes in the sand.
Alajuela is a small city located just outside of Costa Rica's capital city, San Jose. It is home to Costa Rica's largest airport, Juan Santamaría International, and the starting point of many people's vacations. While there are many nice hotels and restaurants to visit, most visitors choose to explore them on their arrival or departure days, and choose to spend a majority of their time in Costa Rica enjoying more natural locations outside of the metropolitan area.
San Jose is the capital city and largest metropolitan area in Costa Rica. In the city center, there are a variety of museums and city tours offered, and also many hotels and restaurants to enjoy. One important thing to note: while called the San Jose airport, SJO is actually located 30 minutes from the city-center in the adjacent city of Alajuela. If you are just looking for somewhere to stay on your way into or out of the country, try looking in Alajuela for a hotel that is closer to the airport.