Costa Rica Holidays
Discover lush tropical scenery and amazing wildlife on Costa Rica holidays, the undisputable gem of Central America. Be prepared for adventure-filled excursions among misty cloud forests, volcanic peaks, dramatic waterfalls and turtle-nesting beaches. An eco-system second to none, with endless species of flora and fauna to discover, Costa Rica holidays take you to a true paradise!
Costa Rica Highlights
Sustainable tourism: The undisputable gem of Central America boasts an eco-system second to none and endless species of flora and fauna. Eco-lodges and off-the-beatentrack experiences have flourished in the recent years, offering more sustainable holidays to nature lovers and infinite opportunities to explore.
Birdwatching: Birding here is an extraordinary experience, with over 800 species recorded to date. Exciting guided tours and itineraries will take you to stunning natural locations where you are able to study its avifauna in undisturbed environments, from sea level to high mountains. With roughly 18% of the territory dedicated to National Parks and reserves, nowhere else in the world is as biodiverse and pristine.
Volcanoes and National Parks: Among Costa Rica's main attractions is the Arenal volcano, famous for its spectacular show of red lava eruptions, hot springs and other natural wonders including La Fortuna waterfall and the wildlife refuge of Caño Negro. Rincon de la Vieja Volcano also offer unique sites with their hot mud pools and lakes with constant activity and is the top spot for horseriding and river-based activities.
Soft adventure: Be prepared for adventure-filled excursions among misty cloud forests, volcanic peaks, dramatic waterfalls and turtle-nesting beaches. Wildlife reserves and national parks here make for great hiking and exploring possibilities, with canopy walking, white water rafting and ziplining widely available for adrenalyne junkies.
Tropical beaches: For stunning, varied and colourful sandy beaches you can head to the Guanacaste region in the Northwest Pacific. Cliffs surround the beaches while the sun baths them, making them seem golden and endless. Tamarindo, Flamingo and the Gulf of Papagayo are amongst the most popular with fascinating national parks nearby and a variety of activities, including fishing, diving and golf. For those who look for pristine waters and remote ecolodges, Manuel Antonio and Corcovado are virtually untouched.
Costa Rica Factfile
When to go
Temperature Range: 10°C - 32°C
Most popular: November - April
Best value: April, May, June, September and October
Best weather: January - March
Direct flights: None
Indirect flights: Continental Airlines, United Airlines, Delta Airlines, Air Canada and Iberia
Visa information: None for British citizens
Health information: No specific vaccinations required
Time Difference: GMT -6 hours
When To Go
To avoid the highest prices of January to March, stick to before and after the high season. There will be fewer crowds and you could get that same stunning scenery for a bargain price. It rarely rains in Guanacaste even during the green season and hotel prices are considerably cheaper between April to June and September to October.
Best Time to Go
If you are looking for sunny days on the beach and least chances of rain, head to the Gulf of Guanacaste between November and April, the warm and dry season. May to October is the so called "green season", when the chances of rain are higher (mainly a few hours in the afternoon) but the landscape is lush and luxuriant. If rainforest trekking and volcano climbing is what you are after, the highlands around Arenal Volcano have their own microclimate and see the best weather between May and November with September to October the optimum time to see the volcano. Monteverde Cloud Forest is misty year round and is better enjoyed between January and May.
Most people choose to visit Costa Rica during the winter months of November to April so they can take full advantage of the outdoors with warmer temperatures and plenty of activities available with little chance of rain. Guanacaste is quite dry and arid year round though and if you are interested in joining our Costa Rica Adventure tour and trekking around Arenal before heading to the beach, the summer months are highly recommended.
Costa Rica enjoys a warm tropical weather year round, with temperatures averaging 21 to 27ºC. The coolest months are November to January whilst the hottest are March to May.
Costa Rica experiences two seasons, the dry from December to April and the wet for the rest of the year. Temperatures vary little from season, with San José climate referred to as eternal springs (low average 15ºC) and the coasts enjoying much hotter weather, averaging 30ºC year round.
Costa Rica Travel Information
There are a number of carriers to offering flights to Costa Rica from the UK.
Direct Carriers: There are no direct flights to Costa Rica from the UK.
Indirect Carriers: Continental Airlines, United Airlines, Delta Airlines, Air Canada and Iberia all offer flights to Costa Rica from the UK via the USA, Canada and Spain.
Departure Tax: An international departure tax of USD28 must be paid at Liberia and San José Airports.
British Citizens are NOT required to have a visa to enter Costa Rica but your passport must be valid for at least six months beyond your intended stay in Costa Rica. Please contact the Costa Rica Embassy for up to date country and visa information on 0207 706 8844.
How to obtain a visa
If you need a travel visa for your upcoming trip, Hayes & Jarvis are pleased to offer our customers the expertise and experience of CIBT, the Global Visa and Passport Professionals. CIBT UK Ltd specializes in fast, dependable visa application services. Don't wait until the last minute, for an application form and discounted pricing. Call 0844 800 4650 or visit www.uk.cibt.com/hayesandjarvis