Population: 5.1 million people
Capital: San Jose
Currency: Costa Rican colon (CRC)
Costa Rica has traditionally been considered a tourist mecca. The vast biodiversity of this small country attracts travelers looking for sleepy sloths in trees, red-eyed frogs, paralyzing predators and humpback whales. This is a great place to immerse yourself in nature, as 25% of the entire area is a protected natural area. Covering only 0.03% of the planet’s area, Costa Rica is home to 5% of all species. Even in the worst possible circumstances, you are unlikely to spend more than one day looking for a lizard, monkey or snake!
Costa Rica is one of the leading countries in the field of nature conservation. Locals understand how important it is to protect this piece of tropical paradise and stay in harmony with nature and its inhabitants. The state was one of the first to achieve carbon neutrality – 100% of the country’s energy is produced from renewable sources.
Adventure seekers can climb the volcano or take a ride on the cable car, while lovers of “immersion” will love secluded yoga. It is worth trying world-class surfing at Playa Tamarindo or rafting while crossing the ferocious rapids of the Pacuar River.
Particular attention should be paid to local dishes: grilled chicken or fish with gallo pinto garnish, aromatic rice and beans. Add a drop of Lisano salsa, a spicy condiment found on every table, and instantly feel like a Costa Rican.
How to get here
Costa Rica has four international airports – Juan Santamaria, Liberia, Tobias Bolanos, Limon International
Most flights arrive at Juan Santamaria, 20 km west of San Jose. It is the largest airport in the country with an average of 60 flights per day.
There is no direct flight from Russia and the CIS countries to Costa Rica. The most convenient routes are offered by Iberia through Madrid, Lufthansa together with Condor through Frankfurt and Cubana through Havana.
Airport tax will be charged upon departure.
In addition, Costa Rica can be reached by land via Nicaragua or Panama.
An unforgettable experience
- Wake up to the roar of the monkeys and spend the day exploring Corcovado or Manuel Antonio National Park. See crabs running along the pristine beaches and climbing palms. Hear the scarlet macaws screaming overhead.
- Sail off the Pacific Coast by boat to see humpback whales enjoying the warm waters during their annual winter break.
- Spend an unforgettable evening listening to the sounds of the rainforest in Lapa Rios, one of Costa Rica’s unique eco-lodges. This place, with grid on the windows and a wild jungle outside, is home to monkeys, toucans, frogs, macaws and many more. You have never felt so close to nature.
Duration: 2 weeks
- Relax at the hot springs and waterfalls near La Fortuna and gaze at the 1,670m peak of Arenal Volcano in the distance.
- Immerse yourself in lush rainforest and scream as you ride the longest zipline in Central America, or sample some of Monteverde’s finest coffees.
- Walk through the wilderness of Corcovado National Park and see sloths, monkeys, snakes, toucans, frogs and whales in their natural habitat.
- Rent a kayak in Tortuguero National Park to meet even more animals before learning about the leatherback turtles and green sea turtles, for which the beach is their home.
- End your trip with a Rasta party atmosphere in Puerto Viejo de Talamanca.
When to go
Costa Rica has two coasts and combines several microclimates, so the weather at different points is very different.
The Pacific coast is free of rain from December to April. On the Caribbean coast, this season runs from March to September.
Regardless of when you decide to come, you need to remember that this is a tropical country, which means you always need to be prepared for the rain.
Currency can be exchanged at the airport, bank, exchange office or hotel.
Banks offer the most favorable rate.
US dollars are preferred. American currency widely accepted in the country, although surrender is most often given in local currency. Other currencies are more difficult to exchange.
Banks are open from 8: 30-9: 00 to 15: 00-17: 00 on weekdays and from 9:00 to 14:00 on Saturdays, Sunday is a day off.
Credit cards from major payment systems and traveller’s checks are accepted in shops and major hotels. ATM machines are usually located in bank branches or in supermarkets in large cities. It is more profitable to take travel checks to the country in US dollars.
You can familiarize yourself with the pricing policy below:
Useful phone numbers
USA Embassy in San Jose, Calle 98 Vía 104, Pavas, San José, Costa Rica: +506 2519 2000
Firefighters: 118, Police: 117, Rural Police: 127, Rescue: 911 (San Jose only) or 122, Traffic Police: 222-93-30 or 222-92-45.