Costa Rica is 20,000 square miles of rugged mountains, relaxing beaches, and rich rainforests, which means there’s always something new to try from relaxing at a spa to hanging out with monkeys in the trees. Here are my recommended 7 things to do in Costa Rica from my recent trip:
Relax at the Beach or Pool
Even though my boyfriend and I didn’t have a long flight to Costa Rica, it was still nice to spend our day after traveling relaxing by the water with a drink in hand. With 800 miles of coastline, you’ll have no trouble finding your perfect Costa Rica beach. The water on the Pacific coast where we were staying in the Guanacaste region was cold but not unbearable. The pool at our resort was warm by comparison but offered pool-side drink service to always keep you quenched, and we took full advantage of this service by trying every tropical drink we could think of. There’s nothing like finishing your day with a sunset walk on the beach.
Hike the Rainforests, Cloud Forests, and Dry Forests
Costa Rica has an unmatched biodiversity, and it is home to many different types of animals, plants, and climates. The popular rainforests are located in the southern region of the country. These rainforests are one of the best places to see many different types of Costa Rican wildlife. The magical cloud forests encompassed by fog are found across the country in the slopes of mountains and volcanos. Dry forests are found near the North Pacific coast in the Guanacaste province, where we were staying. These forests are less dense and offer better visuals of wildlife.
Because there’s so much do in Costa Rica, we booked a day tour with Swiss Travel Costa Rica. Our full-day adventure took us to Rincon de la Vieja National Park, which is made up of a dry forest. We hiked a short distance, all geared up for zip lining, to the top of the mountain for our canopy zip line tour.
Zip Line the Canopy
Practically every tour company in Costa Rica offers a zip line tour for the adventurously spirited to view the forests from above while gliding from tree to tree just like a monkey. Our canopy zip line tour consisted of 12 lines that started off nice and slow and then got longer and faster as you learned the rope. While we waited for our turn to zip hanging in the balance on a hanging bridge high above the forest floor, we were able to watch and listen to howler monkeys swinging in the trees just a few feet away.
Take a Ride on a Waterslide
Many tour companies also offer a waterslide portion of their day trips. Our tour to the Ricon de le Vieja National Park boasted of 1,300 foot slide, the longest waterslide in Costa Rica. The water was cold, but after the first rush of speed the waterslide became a relaxing ride.
Go Horseback Riding
Another great way to see Costa Rica’s many forests is from below on horseback. Our tour took us up and down the steep mountain terrain on the way to the park’s spa. While trekking through the forest, we were able to see a couple spider monkeys come down from the canopy.
Rejuvenate at Volcanic Hot Springs
Costa Rica takes advantage of its many volcanos by creating spas with hot springs warmed by the volcanic heat. Here we were able to enjoy a mud bath, sauna, and the healing properties of the natural hot springs in varying degrees of hotness. And how many opportunities do you get to play in the mud on a normal day? Take advantage of the fun along with the mud’s rejuvenating properties!
Whatever You Do, Try Something New!
Whether it’s snorkeling or kayaking or learning to surf, the adventurous spirit of Costa Rica lends itself to trying something new. My boyfriend and I wanted to try snorkeling, but unfortunately we were never able to get a time scheduled. Instead, we learned to play croquet and make friends with a few other couples thanks to a game our resort set up. There’s nothing like coming home from a vacation having learned something new!
What’s your favorite thing to do in Costa Rica? Tell me in the comments!