From national parks to active volcanoes, and from sleepy beach towns to coffee plantations, Costa Rica is truly an adventurer’s paradise. Be it spending a laid back vacation, soaking in the goodness of cool Bohemian vibes, or embarking on long nature walks through dense rainforests, these exciting things to do in Costa Rica will get your pulse going in no time.
You don’t need to think much about what to do in Costa Rica, because this place is full of exciting things for travelers. Considered to be the ultimate destination for the adventurers as well as the culture vultures, let these ten best things to do in Costa Rica take you through the history and diversity of the country.
1. Manuel Antonio National Park – Explore
Experience wildlife & adventure at Manuel Antonio National Park that is spread across an area of 680 hectares. Visiting this national park is one of the best things to do in Costa Rica. Famous for its tropical plants and wildlife, this national park is also home to three-toed sloths and endangered white-faced capuchin monkeys along with many bird species. Also, one can also explore the rainforest trails and hike along the mountain trails. And the rains add on to the beauty of this natural wonder so think no more of the things to do in Costa Rica when it rains, but head here.
Location: Puntarenas Province, Cantón de Aguirre, Costa Rica
Entry Fee: INR 1159
Timings: 7 AM to 4 PM
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2. Manzanillo – Go Snorkeling
Snorkeling is one of the popular Costa Rica activities that is loved by everyone. So if you like your beach towns with a hefty dose of Caribbean charm, pristine beaches, and dirt roads, you will definitely love this corner of the east coast. Surrounded by the Gandoca Manzanillo Wildlife Refuge, it is also an ideal spot for snorkeling amidst the spectacular coral reefs offshore in Costa Rica.
Location: Province, Costa Rica
3. Liberia – Saddle Up
Named after the cowboys of the town, Liberia is the famous capital of Costa Rica’s sabanero culture. And one of the best things to do in Liberia, Costa Rica is to saddle up as a Costa Rican Cowboy. You can saddle up and combine an easy horse ride with wildlife watching. The park is known for its orchids, more than 300 species of birds, easy-to-spot sloths, howlers, and spider monkeys along with shy pumas, tapirs, and jaguars.
4. Costa Rica – Celebrate Slothfulness
Wondering what to do in Costa Rica? Celebrate slothfulness which is one of the famous free things to do in Costa Rica. The country is home to two species that of the two-fingered, and the three-fingered sloth. Strictly vegetarian, the three-fingered sloths are actually very selective about what they eat. According to the research, they eat 96 species of plants, and each sloth will have five or six of its own personal favorite plants to eat.
5. Monteverde – Interact With The Hummingbirds
One of the top things to do in Costa Rica is to visit places like Monteverde where you can get up and close with the hummingbirds. In a place like Monteverde, where they have several hummingbird gardens, it is not uncommon to spot 15-20 of these species in a day. Being a good place to spot toucans too, one can find six toucans in the rainforests and lowlands of Costa Rica of the 42 species known to man. Also, go for Quetzal-spotting which happens to be one of the best things to do in San Jose, Costa Rica.
6. Corcovado National Park – Go Hiking
Visiting the Corcovado National Park is one of the popular activities to do in Costa Rica. Considered to be one of the world’s most biodiverse regions, this national park is home to scarlet macaws, tapirs, jaguars, and squirrel monkeys. You can also go for hiking by following the coastal and inland routes through habitats ranging from Pacific beaches and mangrove swamps to lowland and mountain rainforests.
Location: Los Patos Sirena Trail, Puntarenas Province, Costa Rica
Timings: 8 AM to 4 PM
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7. Central Valley – Stroll Through Coffee Plantations
Costa Rica’s bustling capital is surrounded by cool, green peaks, which makes touring the coffee plantations, one of the delightful things to do in Costa Rica. Perfect for coffee production, and home to pretty, traditional towns, take a stroll around the beautiful plantations to learn about how coffee is cultivated, processed and roasted, and experience staying overnight at one of the amazing boutique hotels.
8. Butterfly Conservatory – Be Enchanted
One of the Costa Rica activities is to visit the Butterfly Conservatory. Located close to the shores of beautiful Lake Arenal in the Alajuela Province, this is an ideal place for nature-lovers of all ages who can take an interesting and educational tour that will introduce them to the life of butterflies that inhabit during the four different microclimates found around the lake. One can also visit the greenhouses where the butterflies are bred, the frog habitat, and an orchid exhibition along with the Rainforest River that happens to be one of the fun things to do in Costa Rica.
9. Museo De Jade – Unveil The Past
Without thinking what to do in San Jose Costa Rica, head straight to the famous archaeological museum that traces the pre-Columbian history. At the Museo de Jade, you will find an impressive collection of jade jewelry and artifacts, and learn about why this particular stone was so revered throughout the history of the country. In addition to the jade collection, you can also see various decorative artifacts dating back to the period between 500 BC and 800 AD.
Location: Calle 13 y 13 bis, Provincia de, Av Central, San José Province, San José, Costa Rica
Timings: 10 AM to 5 PM
10. Corobici River – Enjoy Safari Float
Among the top things to do in Guanacaste Costa Rica is to go for a Safari Float on the Corobici River. Spend some time and float down the Corobici or Tenorio River for two hours on a raft boat. Engulfed with the Tropical Dry Gallery Forest packed with giant fig trees, you can spot monkeys, crocodiles, iguanas, and countless birds. This tour is a great way to spot wildlife along the riverbed and through the treetops.
11. La Fortuna Waterfall – Enjoy Vistas
Spending a day near a stunning waterfall, seems like a plan? La Fortuna Waterfall is the perfect destination if you are looking for things to do in Costa Rica on honeymoon. Enjoy the spectacular view of continuous water falling out of a cliff of the dormant Chato volcano. Do stop here in June for absorbing the spectacular view as it is one of the best things to do in Costa Rica in June
Location: Arenal Volcano National Park, La Fortuna de San Carlos 106-4417, Costa Rica
Entry Fee: INR 1085
12. Arenal Volcano – Explore
Do volcanoes excite you? Exploring the giant Arenal volcano will make your trip thrilling as well as adventurous. This volcano has been dormant since 2010 and it is expected that it can erupt unexpectedly like it did in 1968. Being one of the seven historically active volcano, Arenal is a must visit in the things to do in Costa Rica guide. The conical-symmetrical shape of Arenal Volcano makes it a popular tourist. So, when do you plan to visit?
Location: Alajuela Province, Costa Rica
Entry Fee: INR 1085
13. Costa Rica – Try Ziplining
Zipline is an interesting and adventurous activity. The thrill of it increases when in the environs of Costa Rica, as one can zip line over the cascading waterfalls. There are various Zipline tours available in Costa Rica. You can choose the best suitable for you according to the duration and location. Have a great time ziplining with your friends and family!
14. Nicoya Peninsula – Relax And Unwind
On the Pacific coast of Costa Rica, lies the Nicoya Peninsula. It offers quite a lot of unique things to do in Costa Rica. One can explore the Samara Beach which is a horseshoe-shaped beach. Enjoy sunbathing and swimming here. There are more beaches for one to go beach hopping at the Nicoya Peninsula. If you are fond of nature, then you can also explore the Palo Verde National Park there.
15. Tabacon Hot Springs – Rejuvenate
Costa Rica has the largest network of hot springs and Tabacon Hot Springs is one of the first resorts there of these thermal hot springs. The thermal springs in Arenal are the largest of all and an amazing place to revive and rejuvenate. Other than the hot springs, one can also enjoy spa facilities here. And if it is raining, then a comforting spa can be one of the best things to do in Costa Rica when it rains.
16. Jaco Beach – Learn Surfing
If you are looking for things to do in Costa Rica with kids, then you can head to this beautiful beach in Costa Rica where one can learn surfing. It is an amazing sport and if practiced under guidance, it is quite a lot of fun. Other than surfing one can just relax at the beach and sunbathe during the day and explore the nearby places to enjoy the dazzling nightlife of Costa Rica.
Mesmerized by these amazing experiences? Then include them in your travel plan and gear up to witness the best of Costa Rica while you plan a hassle-free trip to USA with TravelTriangle and explore this land of incredible beaches, architectures, and rich culture!
Q. What is the best currency to use in Costa Rica?
A. US Dollars are accepted in Costa Rica, but one should have the local currency too.
Q. Do you have to go through customs in Costa Rica?
A. Yes, one has to go through customs in Costa Rica.