• 16+ years
    • 12-15 years
    • 2-11 years
    • 0-23 months

Welcome to Costa Rica

Costa Rica

Costa Rica is a rugged, rainforested Central American country with coastlines on the Caribbean and Pacific. Though its capital, San Jose, is home to cultural institutions like the Pre-Columbian Gold Museum, Costa Rica is known for its beaches, volcanoes and immense biodiversity. Roughly a quarter of its area is made up of protected jungle, rich with wildlife including spider monkeys and quetzal birds.

In Costa Rica the visitor can enjoy lovely tropical beaches, the grandest adventures, the wonders of nature, scintillating culture, all the necessary components of an ideal vacation. No wonder, then, that thousands of tourists have made Costa Rica their top travel choice.

Costa Rica occupies a privileged spot in the heart of Central America. While its territory of 19,652 square miles touches both the Caribbean Sea and the Pacific Ocean, the country is surprisingly accessible - one can travel from coast to coast in just three hours by car (or 45 minutes by plane).

The Caribbean region of Costa Rica stands out for its variety of aquatic ecosystems and its beautiful white and black sand beaches, providing an ideal setting for activities such as sport fishing, snorkeling, and sun bathing. The Pacific coast concentrates big tourist centers and its beaches are very popular for surfing, for example Esterillos, Jaco, Hermosa, Boca Barranca. In the Golfito region, near the Marino Ballena National Park, surfing fans can find the famous "long lefthander wave."

 

Information & Facts

Attraction Overview

Costa Rica is a land of volcanoes, rain forests, waterfalls, and rivers. Adventure travelers can choose from a variety of activities such as rafting, snorkeling, kayaking, sport fishing, surfing, and lots more. The most challenging activity will be choosing what to do!

Costa Rica is a destination with an abundance of thrills and adrenaline for lovers of adventure tourism. The whole year round, and in most parts of the country, whether it is on water, land or earth, you can select among a great variety of activities for all of the family. Usually they take place in natural environments, where you will have unforgettable experiences.

Business

Costa Rica is definitely the ideal destination for your meetings and incentive travel events.

Certainly there are many reasons that make Costa Rica a suitable destination for your meetings and incentive programs: from its recognized dedication to the conservation of natural resources, its rich biodiversity and quality hotel infrastructure, to factors such as its recognized political stability, its high quality health services, ease of air access and excellent technological development, which is why many world renowned companies decided to install their regional offices in the country.

Climate

Costa Rica has a great variety of microclimates, which the tourist can, in a short distance and time, feel the different types of environments, which will in turn have a positive impact on their travel experience.

Costa Rica’s location in the region of the Tropic of Cancer and Tropic of Capricorn is defined as the Tropical Zone and it confers tropical characteristics to its ecological environment: forests, waterways, soil, and climate.

The flora and the fauna that has adapted in these conditions are therefore typically tropical. The tropical climate of Costa Rica is modified by various factors such as the topography (the arrangement of the mountains, plains and plateaus), the situation, with respect to the continent (isthmic conditions), the oceanic influence (the winds or the marine breezes, the temperature of the marine currents), and the general circulation of the atmosphere (IGN 2005).

The interactions of local geographical, atmospheric, and oceanic factors are the main criteria to regionalize the country climatically. The northwest-southeast orientation of the mountain system divides Costa Rica into two watersheds: Pacific and Caribbean. Each one of these watersheds, present their own regimen of precipitation and temperature with particular characteristics of special and temporal distribution (Manso et al., 2005).

Precipitation regimens (Pacific and Caribbean), the elevation and orientation of the mountains, together with the predominating winds and the influence of the oceans, make it possible to differentiate seven large regions: North Pacific, Central Pacific, South Pacific, Central Region, Northern Area, Northern Caribbean Region and Southern Caribbean Region.

Electricity

Costa Rican Electricity Institute (ICE).

Ninety seven percent of the national territory has electrical service. The voltage in residential areas is 110v.

Getting Around

A) WATER PASSAGES

The most important water passages in the country which serve the purpose for everyday transportation as well as a route for tourists are:

  • The Tortuguero Canals and Barra del Colorado, on the Northern Caribbean
  • The Sarapiqui River, on the Northern zone
  • The Matina River, on the central Caribbean
  • Part of the San Juan River, on the border with Nicaragua
  • The Cold River, the Caño Negro Lagoons, and Los Chiles on the Northern zone
  • The Sierpe River, on the Southern zone
  • The Tempisque River, on the Gulf of Nicoya

Other rivers of great importance are:

  • On the Caribbean: Pacuare, Reventazon, Caribbean Chrripo, Estrella, and Sixaola
  • On the Pacific: Bebedero, Grande de Tarcoles, Coto, Chirripo, and Parrita

B) AIRPORTS

The main airport is the Juan Santamaria International Airport, located in Alajuela. This airport is only twenty minutes away from San José.

Other important airports are:

  • The Daniel Oduber Quiros International Airport, located in Liberia, Guanacaste.
  • The Tobias Bolaños Airport located in Pavas, San José, for local as well as international flights.

There are also landing fields for local flights situated in different parts of the country such as: Limon, Tortuguero, La Fortuna, Tamarindo, Samara, Tambor, Quepos, Palmar North, Golfito, and San Vito.
 

C) HIGHWAYS AND ROADS

The whole country is adequately connected by internal infrastructure. The main artery is the Interamerican Highway, which connects the two borders from Peñas Blancas all the way to Paso Canoas. The Cerro de la Muerte (Death Mountain) region has the road with the highest elevation in the country with an altitude higher than 3, 200 meters above sea level.

 

Health

Despite its size and being an under developed country, Costa Rica has positioned itself among the countries with the highest public healthcare development in Latin America.

The Costa Rican Social Security Service (CCSS) is a public service institution that has accomplished important goals regarding health issues, including pensions and social security. This institution offers coverage and integrated health services through two types of insurance:

  • General coverage insurance, with a service that covers 100% of the country.

  • Contribution coverage insurance, with an 86.80% of the population.

Costa Rica is the country in Latin America with the highest life expectancy rate at 77.75 years old; it is also one of the countries with the lowest infant mortality rate: 10.82%. It is also far advanced in issues regarding prenatal prevention and control.

Language

The official language is Spanish. The second language for a large portion of the population is English.

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