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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.

Explore tours by duration: 5 days · 6 days · 7 days · 8 days · 9 days · 10 days · 11 days · 12 days · 14 days · 15 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.

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.

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.

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.

View of the Arenal Volcano from the hotel
Map of Costa Rica Family Vacation - 6-Day Itinerary
Costa Rica Family Vacation - 6-Day Itinerary

Traveling with your family is a great way to create wonderful memories. In Costa Rica, you and your children will have a wonderful time doing adventurous activities together. All the activities have been selected to be family and kid-friendly.

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.

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
How Many Days Should You Spend in Costa Rica
How Many Days Should You Spend in Costa Rica

You can have a great adventure in Costa Rica in as short as a long weekend. With only a few days to spare you will have enough time to hike through a rainforest, see an active...

Guanacaste coast
5 Days in Costa Rica - 6 Unique Itineraries

With less than a week, it's possible to experience many of Costa Rica's star attractions. You can visit misty cloud forests, go whale watching on the Pacific, view wildlife in...

Arenal Volcano
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...

Costa Rica Travel Essentials

All you need to know to get started planning the perfect trip
Best Time of Year to Visit Costa Rica
Best Time of Year to Visit Costa Rica

Coastal panoramas, rare ecosystems, volcanoes to climb—Costa Rica is all of this, and more. For access to all the country has to offer, visit during the dry season that runs...

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 FAQ
Costa Rica FAQ

Costa Rica is a natural marvel—a relatively small country boasting four UNESCO Biosphere Reserves and 28 national parks. Travelers heading to this biodiverse wonderland can read...

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...

Costa Rica Travel Advice

Read our detailed insights to make sure you have the best trip
Why Costa Rica is Great for Families
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
Birding Guide to Costa Rica: 7 Great Regions

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
Tips for Visiting San José, Costa Rica
Tips for Visiting 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...

Leatherback turtle
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...

Bridge over the Rio 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...

Our Latest Costa Rica Content

Snorkel among coral reefs in the Pacific
Map of Coast to Coast Family Adventure - 15 Days
Coast to Coast Family Adventure - 15 Days

This 15-day adventure allows you to experience the country from both coasts and is designed from start to finish with kids in mind. You'll visit the bustling capital of San José, the rainforest of Tortuguero National Park, the towering Arenal Volcano, the cloud forest of Monteverde and the spectacular beaches of Guanacaste. There are plenty of family-friendly activities along the way, from watching sea turtles hatch on a Caribbean beach to sampling locally produced chocolate to snorkeling in the Pacific.

Toucans can often be spotted among the treetops in Tortuguero National Park
Map of Costa Rica: Ultimate National Parks Tour - 15 Days
Costa Rica: Ultimate National Parks Tour - 15 Days

Experience Costa Rica's most spectacular national parks on this 15-day tour. You'll catch glimpses of sea turtles and monkeys in Tortuguero National Park and spot hundreds of bird species in the Monteverde Cloud Forest. Then it's time to head to the countries largest and most famous volcano, Arenal, for a mix of wildlife and heart pumping excursions. Finally, you'll end the trip in  Manuel Antonio, where you'll snorkel among colorful fish and traverse jungle trails.

Surfboards lining the beach in Puerto Viejo de Talamanca
Map of Arenal & The Caribbean Coast - 15 Days
Arenal & The Caribbean Coast - 15 Days

On this 15-day trip, you will experience the best of the country's tropical flora and fauna. From rainforest hikes to snorkeling in coral reefs.  You'll visit the famous Arenal volcano, see tons of exotic wildlife in Tortuguero National Park, and surf world-class waves in the laid-back beach town of Puerto Viejo de Talamanca.

Costa Rica Travel Maps

Get the lay of land, and understand distances between the places you want to visit
5-Days in Costa Rica : 5 Unique Trip Itineraries
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10 Days in Costa Rica: 5 Unique Itineraries
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3 Days in Costa Rica: 3 Great Itineraries to Maximize Your Time
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Meet our Local Travel Specialists

Experienced travel specialists with a passion for Costa Rica
Travel specialist Randall Jiménez
active 3 hours 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 Olman Romero
active 3 hours 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 3 hours 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...
Travel specialist Adriana Prado
active 3 hours 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...

Related Destinations

Travelers who visit Costa Rica also visit these destinations

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Authentic travel experiences

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Trip Reviews for Costa Rica

The latest reviews by travelers who booked their trip on kimkim

Eco-adventure , Costa Rica - Mar 18 - Mar 26, 2019

Traveler: Julie C. - Local specialist: Randall Jiménez

Our recent 9 day tour to Costa Rica went off without a hitch! All the details were in place so that all our activities happened smoothly. We spent 2 days in San Jose going on a wonderful coffee plantation tour and visiting Peace Waterfall Gardens. Our Hotel Martino was located on the outskirts of San Jose, just 15 minutes from the airport, so we didn’t have to deal with all the traffic in San Jose.
Next we were off to a crocodile and bird tour on Rio Tarcoles, then on to Manuel Antonio... read more

Our recent 9 day tour to Costa Rica went off without a hitch! All the details were in place so that all our activities happened smoothly. We spent 2 days in San Jose going on a wonderful coffee plantation tour and visiting Peace Waterfall Gardens. Our Hotel Martino was located on the outskirts of San Jose, just 15 minutes from the airport, so we didn’t have to deal with all the traffic in San Jose.
Next we were off to a crocodile and bird tour on Rio Tarcoles, then on to Manuel Antonio staying at the Costa Verde Hotel enjoying all of its amenities, good food, and unbelievably beautiful views. We reached our final location after an hour long boat ride down the Rio Sierpe where we arrived at Drake Bay Lodge near Corcovado National Park on the Osa Peninsula. A day in the jungle seeing a tapir, a mangrove hawk, parakeets, coatis, and macaws, among other animals, made for an amazing first day in the Osa. After a delicious picnic lunch we hiked to a waterfall for a refreshing swim in its cool waters.
On our last day a beautiful ocean boat ride took us to offshore Cano Island where we snorkeled with a plethora of fish in the clear waters followed by a delicious picnic on a gorgeous beach. Costa Rica offers everything an active vacationer could want in a tropical environment.

Trip, Costa Rica - Mar 15 - Mar 25, 2019

Traveler: Deidre C. - Local specialist: Randall Jiménez

We used KimKim to arrange our first trip to Costa Rica and we were very, very happy how the trip was planned and coordinated through our awesome travel agent, Randall! We had such a great time hiking, biking, zip-lining, touring and had spa time as well and it was due to Randall who is amazingly knowledgeable and very nice and helped us to maximize our time in the country. He made us feel very comfortable with the planning from beginning to end. He was so responsive always- and even while we... read more

We used KimKim to arrange our first trip to Costa Rica and we were very, very happy how the trip was planned and coordinated through our awesome travel agent, Randall! We had such a great time hiking, biking, zip-lining, touring and had spa time as well and it was due to Randall who is amazingly knowledgeable and very nice and helped us to maximize our time in the country. He made us feel very comfortable with the planning from beginning to end. He was so responsive always- and even while we were in Costa Rica. Quite simply Randall made this trip easy to plan and fun, fun, fun!! We knew what we wanted to do and he planned it and he was very professional all the way through as well answering and handling all of our questions and needs. I now will use KimKim for all our travel needs!! Thanks again Randall for making our trip so much fun! I highly recommend him!!

Deidre Collins

Trip to costa rica, Costa Rica - Mar 20 - Mar 28, 2019

Traveler: Khaled S. - Local specialist: Adriana Prado

This was our first time to travel to Costa Rica and first time to try Kimkim.

We believe that our trip wouldn't have been as great if we didn't work with Adriana! She really was the hero of our trip!

Despite the short notice, Adriana delivered and amazing overall plan that made us enjoy Costa Rica to the fullest!

She was very great and fast in responding to our many requests and changes and was very accommodating of our demands.

We appreciated her help since we landed in the airport... read more

This was our first time to travel to Costa Rica and first time to try Kimkim.

We believe that our trip wouldn't have been as great if we didn't work with Adriana! She really was the hero of our trip!

Despite the short notice, Adriana delivered and amazing overall plan that made us enjoy Costa Rica to the fullest!

She was very great and fast in responding to our many requests and changes and was very accommodating of our demands.

We appreciated her help since we landed in the airport where we found the driver waiting for us outside, who later gave us a file that had all the detailed of the trip.

In summary, if you are traveling to Costa Rica, work with Adriana and you'll have a grunted fun and smooth travel.

Example Trip Requests

Need some inspiration? Look at what others have requested. View more examples

Wildlife Adventure in Costa Rica

We will be travelling with a 5 yr old boy who is snakes, bird and all wildlife mad and a two year old girl. We would like to see wildlife, volcanoes and rainforest and end with a few days at a beautiful beach. We do not want resorts, we would prefer rustic,...

Family of 2 adults and 2 children visited Costa Rica in February 2018

30th Birthday Adventure in Costa Rica

A way to celebrate my 30th birthday. Inviting some of my closest friends to experience everything we can. Culture, people, activities. Hikes, camping, fishing, farming, surfing, relaxing, anything. Seeing what others typically won't see but living the...

Group of 8 friends visited Costa Rica in June 2017

Active vacation in Costa Rica

One week adventure trip - cycling, white water rafting etc One week surf/yoga camp on the coast We are a young energetic couple so would like it to be an active holiday - but also offering some relaxation time as well!

A couple visited Costa Rica in October 2017

Spring Break for 2018

Looking for a Costa Rica trip that includes volcano hot springs, zip lining, horseback and ATV riding, waterfalls, authentic food, fresh market, white water rafting, picture opportunities, a little adventurous but also relaxing. 3 adults and one child ages...

Family of 3 adults and 1 child visited Costa Rica in March 2018

Costa Rica adventure honeymoon

We are pretty adventurous but also want the relaxation since it is our honeymoon. This will be our first time traveling out of the country so we want to see all that we can without feeling rushed. My fiance and I have been together 5 years and when we get...

A couple visited Costa Rica in April 2018