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Introducing Costa Rica

Costa Rica is a nature lover's dream travel destination. Hike to hidden waterfalls, fly through the rainforest on a zip line, raft amazing white-water, or catch a wave on one of the many epic surf breaks.

When is the best time to visit?
Due to Costa Rica's location in Central America, near to the equator, it enjoys just two seasons annually as opposed to four. The dry season lasts from mid-November through April, and the rainy season lasts from May to mid-November. The latter is also referred to as the "green" season due to the brilliant vegetation that thrives during this period.  

Travelers often opt to visit during the dry season. Peak crowds hit in December, with folks continuing to come during January and February and (for many North Americans) during spring break. However, there are advantages to visiting Costa Rica in the "green" season, from less crowds to lower prices.  Read our travel guide for visiting Costa Rica in the "green" season to find out more.

Still not sure when to go, read our guide on the best times to visit Costa Rica.

Where to go in Costa Rica?
The people of Costa Rica are happy to welcome travelers and teach them about adventure and the pure life, or 'Pura Vida'. This country relies on the eco and adventure tourism that put it on the map, read about the main regions of the country to decide where you want to visit. Visit a baby sloth rescue, get to know Manuel Antonio National Park, see Arenal Volcano, and explore the Osa Peninsula Rainforest.

How many days do I need?
Costa Rica is a small country (size of West Virginia), with many sights situated fairly close together.  With great roads (mostly), throughout the country, makes it easy to get around. In one week, you can explore a number of sights and get a great sense of the country if you are ready to be on the go. With 2 weeks, you have a bit more time to relax in each destination or explore more of the country.  Still not sure how many days you need, read our guide to help you decide.

Getting around Costa Rica
Shuttles or private transfers are great options to get around in Costa Rica. Driving is not always straightforward, but still a great choice if you feel comfortable driving on curvy or unpaved roads.  For longer transfers, Costa Rica has a network of domestic airports that connect the main locations in the country. Read more

Explore trips by duration: 5 days · 6 days · 7 days · 8 days · 9 days · 10 days · 11 days · 12 days · 13 days · 14 days · 15 days · 16 days

Costa Rica Tours & Itineraries

Looking for tours and itineraries for your Costa Rica trip, here is a collection of ideas from kimkim's network of local travel specialists in Costa Rica.
Storm clouds over Arenal volcano
Map of Best of Costa Rica in 7 Days: Explore Jungles, Volcanoes and Beaches
Best of Costa Rica in 7 Days: Explore Jungles, Volcanoes and Beaches

With a mix of rugged jungles, active volcanoes and world-class beaches, Costa Rica offers some of the best natural sights and experiences in the world, all conveniently packed into one territory. Almost a quarter of the land is preserved within national parks, allowing a wide range of animals and plants to flourish, making Costa Rica an ideal destination for ecotourism. With this itinerary, you'll discover the best attractions Costa Rica has to offer in just a week.

Beautiful Rio Celeste in Tenorio National Park
Map of Best of Costa Rica - 14 Days
Best of Costa Rica - 14 Days

This two-week itinerary includes many of Costa Rica's greatest hits. You'll venture into the country's most beautiful national parks and enjoy zip-lining adventures, nature hikes, beach excursions, and more. All the while you'll spot exotic animals as you traverse some of the most virgin rainforest landscapes in Central America.

Monteverde Cloud Forest
Map of Classic Costa Rica: 7-Day Self-Drive Tour
Classic Costa Rica: 7-Day Self-Drive Tour

Taking a road trip through Costa Rica gives you the freedom and flexibility to explore where you want. You'll pass through stunning natural scenery — from lush cloud forests to picturesque beaches — in seven days of scenic driving. This tour can be extended or shortened depending on how much time you have.

Whitewater rafting down the Pacuare river
Map of Costa Rica Adventure: Whitewater, Beaches & Volcanos - 8 Days
Costa Rica Adventure: Whitewater, Beaches & Volcanos - 8 Days

Explore Costa Rica's amazing natural scenery through a thrilling series of activities including whitewater rafting, kayaking, zip-lining, and more. This tour will take you to a wide range of coasts, jungles, and rivers, all while keeping your adrenaline pumping.

Arenal Volcano
Map of Arenal Expedition Self Drive Tour - 4 Days
Arenal Expedition Self Drive Tour - 4 Days

This itinerary is one of the shortest, yet most action-packed options for travelers looking for a compact Costa Rica experience. Zip-line, rappel, and horseback ride your way throughout the Arenal region and enjoy some of the best volcano views the country has to offer.

Arenal Volcano
Map of Family-Friendly Arenal and Manuel Antonio National Park- 9 Days
Family-Friendly Arenal and Manuel Antonio National Park- 9 Days

Fun for the whole family, this itinerary covers two of Costa Rica's most famous areas. Arenal and Manuel Antonio are some of the best representations of Costa Rica; Arenal area features one of the most famous volcanos in the country, surrounded by lush tropical rainforest, while Manuel Antonio National Park is renown for its white sandy beaches and vast diversity of tropical plants and wildlife.

How Many Days To Spend in Costa Rica

Planning a trip to Costa Rica? Read this first to maximize the things to see and do during your visit
Punta Uva Beach on the Caribbean Coast
Map of 7 Days in Costa Rica - 5 Unique Itineraries
7 Days in Costa Rica - 5 Unique Itineraries

Cycle from coast to coast, take a culinary journey, chill on the beach, or have a world-class whitewater adventure: there are countless ways to spend a week in Costa Rica. These...

Arenal Volcano
Map of 10 Days in Costa Rica - 5 Unique Itineraries
10 Days in Costa Rica - 5 Unique Itineraries

Travelers with more than a week to spend in Costa Rica have time to experience much of what makes the country so exceptional, from its many ecosystems and spectacular wildlife...

Enjoy a sunset in Costa Rica
Map of 2 Weeks in Costa Rica - 5 Unique Itineraries
2 Weeks in Costa Rica - 5 Unique Itineraries

With two weeks, you can traverse the length and breadth of Costa Rica. You can visit the most famous national parks, indulge in all the adventure activities, laze on white-sand...

Costa Rica Travel Essentials

All you need to know to get started planning the perfect trip
Essential Costa Rica: 4 Regions to Visit
Essential Costa Rica: 4 Regions to Visit

Costa Rica is proof that big things can come in small packages. Although this Central American gem is barely the size of West Virginia, it’s the most biodiverse country on the...

Visit Costa Rica on your next kimkim trip
How kimkim Trips Work in Costa Rica

Planning a trip to Costa Rica? Here's a quick introduction to kimkim, how our trips work, and what makes us unique. We'll go over how our itineraries are customized to your...

A road to Arenal Volcano
Driving in Costa Rica: Road Trip FAQ

Costa Rica has a way of igniting the adventurous spirit within. This is, after all, one of the world's most biodiverse countries loaded with rainforests, wildlife species,...

Costa Rica Travel Advice

Read our detailed insights to make sure you have the best trip
Explore Costa Rica's wildlife with your family
Why Costa Rica is Great for Families

For parents toying with the idea of an international vacation, this Latin American nation is chock-full of family experiences that will leave a lasting impression for years to...

A colorful toucan perches on a tree branch in a Costa Rican forest
7 Best Places for Birding in Costa Rica

More than a quarter of Costa Rica is protected jungle, home to a wide variety of native wildlife—including 850 colorful species of birds. Learn about the country's best areas to...

Costa Rica Travel Guides

Detailed travel guides for the main regions of the country
Essential Costa Rica: 4 Regions to Visit
Essential Costa Rica: 4 Regions to Visit

Costa Rica is proof that big things can come in small packages. Although this Central American gem is barely the size of West Virginia, it’s the most biodiverse country on the...

costa rica
Ultimate Guide to San José, Costa Rica

San José offers much more than the international airport most visitors fly into. Costa Rica's capital is a cultural hub worth getting to know, and provides a great intro to the...

Costa Rica Experiences

Unique things to do in Costa Rica
Brave the whitewater on Río Pacuare
Río Pacuare Whitewater Rafting

Located along Costa Rica’s Caribbean slope, Río Pacuare’s deep gorge is considered one of the best river-rafting sites in the world.  The Río Pacuare runs 67 miles from...

Bridge over the Río Celeste
Río Celeste

Rio Celeste river, inside Tenorio Volcano National Park, is one of Costa Rica's most beautiful and mysterious natural places.  The local legend has it, that after God was done...

The sea turtle, a magnificent and regal creature
Snorkeling & Scuba Diving at Isla del Caño

The Caño Island Biological Reserve (Isla del Caño) is a protected marine area is located just off the northern tip of the Osa Peninsula, next to Bahía Drake.  There is not much...

Our Latest Costa Rica Content

Arenal Volcano
Map of Weeklong Adventure in Costa Rica: Arenal Volcano & Monteverde Cloud Forest - 7 Days
Weeklong Adventure in Costa Rica: Arenal Volcano & Monteverde Cloud Forest - 7 Days

On this weeklong trip, enjoy two stunning destinations in Costa Rica. From the capital, stop for a rafting trip on the Pacuare River, before reaching La Fortuna. Then, explore Arenal Volcano on a nature hike, along with a soak in the hot springs. Next, take a Jeep-Boat-Jeep to Monteverde to discover the hanging bridges, and go ziplining and horseback riding through the forest canopy. Circle back to San José to explore more of the city before departure.

Rafting on the Pacuare River
Map of Active Week in Costa Rica: Pacuare River Rafting, Arenal, & Monteverde - 7 Days
Active Week in Costa Rica: Pacuare River Rafting, Arenal, & Monteverde - 7 Days

Spend an active week discovering some of the natural highlights of Costa Rica. Explore the capital city, and then launch into an adrenaline-pumping rafting excursion along the Pacuare River. Next, explore Arenal Volcano on a nature walk, followed by a hot spring soak. Then, head to Monteverde to tour the incredible cloud forest on horseback and zipline through the canopy. Enjoy more time strolling historical San José before departure.

Manuel Antonio National Park
Map of Coastal Costa Rica: Tortuguero, Puerto Viejo, Arenal, Monteverde, & Manuel Antonio - 13 Days
Coastal Costa Rica: Tortuguero, Puerto Viejo, Arenal, Monteverde, & Manuel Antonio - 13 Days

This jam-packed tour of Costa Rica’s highlights takes you from the Caribbean to the Pacific. Begin with a boat tour of Tortuguero before two days o f relaxation on Puerto Viejo Beach. Conquer the rapids on the Pacuare River en route to adventure-filled Arenal. Then, head to Monteverde, where you'll zipline through the rare cloud forest, followed by a cultural tour of local plantations. The trip winds down in Manuel Antonio, with its gorgeous beaches and adundant wildlife.

Costa Rica Travel Maps

Get the lay of land, and understand distances between the places you want to visit
10 Days in Costa Rica: 5 Unique Itineraries
View article
5-Days in Costa Rica : 5 Unique Trip Itineraries
View article
2 Weeks in Costa Rica: 5 Unique Itineraries
View article

Meet our Local Travel Specialists

Experienced travel agents with a passion for Costa Rica
Travel specialist Randall Jiménez
active 1 day ago

Randall Jiménez

Phrases like “The trip was wonderful beyond my dreams”, “I came back home being a different person…I have grown physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually”, “A job well done my friend”,...

read more...
Travel specialist Adriana Prado
active 1 day ago

Adriana Prado

I was born and raised in a mountainous region in the highlands of the Talamanca Mountain Range. This area is known for being the habitat of the most beautiful bird of the Americas, the Resplendent...

read more...
Travel specialist Olman Romero
active 2 days ago

Olman Romero

I was born in Turrialba, which is a region famous for the Guayabo Archeological Monument, it is the oldest and most important pre-hispanic archeological site in the country. Turrialba is also known...

read more...
Travel specialist Carlos Rodriguez
active 1 day ago

Carlos Rodriguez

I was born in San José, Costa Rica. I have always felt passionate about my country, and enjoy showing it to others, which is the reason why I studied Tourism. I started as a tour guide, and later...

read more...

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Trip Reviews for Costa Rica

The latest reviews by travelers who booked their trip on kimkim

Costa Rica is a magical place · Costa Rica - Dec 26 - Jan 4, 2020

Traveler: Bill M. - Local specialist: Randall Jiménez

Our local specialist, Randall helped to plan an amazing visit to Costa Rica that was just the right combination of relaxation and adventure! The adventure started in Rincon de la Viejo National Park for a great hike with Andre. What an amazing combination of landscape, forest, volcanic pools and an abundance of wildlife. Andre was extremely knowledgeable and a lot of fun! The next several days were all about relaxation in Playa Hermosa with stops in Playa Coco and Tamarindo. We then... read more

Our local specialist, Randall helped to plan an amazing visit to Costa Rica that was just the right combination of relaxation and adventure! The adventure started in Rincon de la Viejo National Park for a great hike with Andre. What an amazing combination of landscape, forest, volcanic pools and an abundance of wildlife. Andre was extremely knowledgeable and a lot of fun! The next several days were all about relaxation in Playa Hermosa with stops in Playa Coco and Tamarindo. We then headed to Arenal for white water rafting, exploring the hanging bridges and lots of time in the hot springs. Magical is the best way to describe the experience and we had such a great time with Jairo and Koki from Wave Rafting and Christian on our tour through Mistico Park. It was our first trip to Costa Rica, but won't be the last. The Costa Rican people are so welcoming and friendly, many thanks to everyone for a memorable vacation!

Family vac in Costa Rica · Costa Rica - Jan 17 - Jan 24, 2020

Traveler: victoria m. - Local specialist: Randall Jiménez

Kim Kim was amazing. Very prompt in responding to our request. The bookings and hotels were just what we wanted and perfect for our family vacation. The only challenge we encountered was several of the guides only spoke Spanish yet were very helpful to try and accommodate our needs. Costa Rica was beautiful! Great family place to vacation.

Randall did a fantastic job setting up this t... · Costa Rica - Jan 8 - Jan 17, 2020

Traveler: David G. - Local specialist: Randall Jiménez

Randall did a fantastic job setting up this trip for 2 couples. The hotels were top notch-Hotel Arenal resort- a very nice property with spacious rooms. Belmar Hotel-Monteverde great views, good food- an ecocentric property, very pleasant staff. La Mansion- Manuel Antonio- a nice property with great views. Staff are nice people but need significant training. The first room they wanted to give one of us had broken AC and a broken sliding door. It took some convincing to change rooms. Bar... read more

Randall did a fantastic job setting up this trip for 2 couples. The hotels were top notch-Hotel Arenal resort- a very nice property with spacious rooms. Belmar Hotel-Monteverde great views, good food- an ecocentric property, very pleasant staff. La Mansion- Manuel Antonio- a nice property with great views. Staff are nice people but need significant training. The first room they wanted to give one of us had broken AC and a broken sliding door. It took some convincing to change rooms. Bar service made mixed drinks with little alcohol. Hotel Grano de Oro -San Jose nice hotel, fantastic food.

Private and semi private rides between locations were fine. Some Costa Rican roads are better than others. Kim Kim arranged four events. Christian of Pur Vida led us on a hike through Hanging Bridges and La Fortuna waterfall. He was a little rushed at Hanging Bridges. Overall a B+. Oscar of Monteverde night tours led us on a night hike.Nice job- we actually saw wildlife - A. Carlos of Monteverde Experts led us on a tour of the cloud forrest was exactly that a well spoken expert- A+. Our last experience was a boat ride in a mangrove swamp led by a man from Tuscane tours. He was young and let one patron orchestrate the 2 hour tour. It was very frustrating- grade of C.

Everything that Kim Kim set up went off as planned. They deserve an A+.