There are so many reasons to love Costa Rica, it has a great mix of nature and animal attractions to keep you in awe for weeks. Costa Rica is an ecotourism paradise, and there’s so much to do there that it could get overwhelming. You can choose from animal spotting, hiking in beautiful national parks or sunbathing at one of the country’s many beaches.
So pick one of your favorite Costa Rica rentals, book your flights and plan your itinerary. Then it’s just a matter of time until you fall in love with this beautiful country, it’s nature and it’s animals.
1. They Have Sloths!
Yes, of course they do – it’s Costa Rica, but did you know that you get up close with these animals at the famous Sloth Sanctuary. You can see sloths in the wild at all sides of the country if you have a keen eye.
However if you want to get really close to them, travel near the Panamanian border to the small beach side town of Cahuita. The Sloth Sanctuary here offers two sloth experiences, the general tour and talk, and the insiders tour.
The normal tour lets you get close to the sloths while finding out more about them. If you splurge the extra cash for the insiders tour however, you’ll get to see the incubator babies, participate in a feeding, and even get to have lunch with one of the sloths. Just in case you’re wondering, he sits in an enclosure close to you, he’s not actually at your table.
2. It’s Easier Than Travelling Elsewhere in the Region
With it being one of the more popular tourist spots in central America, alongside Mexico, there is better infrastructure in place to help you get around. There’s also a higher level of English in the country than in neighboring Nicaragua, for example.
More tourists mean more hotel choices, more English spoken and more tour operators so you have plenty of choices for day tours.
3 It Has Beautiful Beaches
The beaches in Costa Rica seem to differ in style and scene based on what side of the coast you’re on. My personal favorite is Playa Hermosa – the waves there are crazy but it’s a peaceful little beach community and is a great place to relax and watch epic sunsets.
4. You Can Get a Good Deal on Flights from the US
Costa Rica, alongside Mexico, has to be one of the most popular Latin American countries for Americans to travel to. And, with popularity comes increased routes, competition and the inevitable cheaper ticket prices which means it’s way more affordable to travel to Costa Rica than it is elsewhere in the region.
However keep in mind that due to its’ popularity, prices in Costa Rica will be slightly higher than in the lessor traveled regions around it.
5 Beyond Sloths, There are a Plethora of Animals Waiting for you Here
Costa Rica is an animal lovers paradise, with a lot of those animals able to be encountered in the wild. We’ve seen large, bright green lizards hanging around hotel pools, sloths hanging from trees and even tarantulas and turtles on night hikes.
One must do is a night hike to spot turtles, caimans, snakes, tarantulas and frogs in Tortuguero National Park. The boat ride there is .. interesting, but once you get there there’s a ton of stuff to do. If you’re not there during turtle nesting season you can still see all of the other animals I mentioned above.
6. Great Value on Accommodation and Restaurants
While it’s not going to be as cheap as say, the Honduras, Costa Rica hotel prices are still much better value for their American equivalents. Costa Rica is the time to reach for your first all inclusive resort or 4/5 star hotel if it’s something you couldn’t normally afford back home.
Fine dining is also more affordable in Costa Rica so you don’t have to be afraid to splurge more often on food.
7. Cloud Forests, Hot Springs and Mystical Blue Waterfalls
La Fortuna is the town you’ll want to head to as a place to base yourself from day trips to the cloud forest and the alluring blue waterfalls and hot springs nearby. Monteverde is also a good option.
One of the most interesting experiences I’ve had in Costa Rica is catching a hostel bus to some secluded hot springs under an overpass where we sat in the warm water with locals watching fireflies buzz about. It sounds low rent, but is definitely one of the highlights of my trip there.
Rio Celeste was also amazing, there’s a part in the stream where the bright blue waters clash with the brown. The two colours just co-exist with each other at a certain point, it’s amazing to see.
So, are you in love with Costa Rica yet? It’s only a quick flight away for Americans and it’s friendly for tourists who are looking for a easier place to travel for their first trip in the region. Costa Rica really does have everything you could want it a trip, from beaches, to national parks, to animals to hot springs. It’s an eco-tourist’s dream destination.
If you only have enough time to visit a few of these places, and don’t want to take any long bus trips, I’d recommend staying somewhere central like La Fortuna or Manuel National Park. Pick what you want to do in Costa Rica and then see if you can do most of those things in the same area.
This will make your holiday even more relaxing and give you more time to actually enjoy the country, rather than hopping on a bus every few days. If, on the other hand you have a bit of time in the region, say, three weeks or more then it’s a lot less stressful to move around.