Located in Central America, Costa Rica has long been a tourist destination. It is the adventurers’ dream, with beaches, mountains, rain forests and everything in between. Whether you are looking for a relaxing vacation enjoying the Costa Rican philosophy of “pura vida”, or up for exploring volcanoes, whitewater rafting, or hiking through the jungle to discover a wide variety of flora and fauna, Costa Rica has something for everyone. Here is just a glimpse of what is possible on your vacation to Costa Rica:
La Fortuna and Arenal Volcano. One of the world’s most active volcanoes, Arenal stands at 5,000 feet high. It lay dormant for hundreds of years until 1968 when it sprang back to life. Until about 2010, visitors could see lava flowing down the sides of the mountain. While it has entered another dormant phase, Arenal is still a spectacular site to see, and one of the best viewing points is the Arenal Observatory. At the base of the volcano is the small town of La Fortuna, where you can enjoy hot springs, see the beautiful La Fortuna waterfall, or take a walk through the rainforest at Mistico Arenal Hanging Bridges Park.
Tortuguero National Park. In the Costa Rican jungle sits Tortuguero National Park, where you can see a variety of exotic animals including white-faced monkeys, toucans, jaguars, bright lizards, red-eyed frogs and blue morpho butterflies. As its name suggests, you can also see sea turtles nesting from early March to mid-October. Tortuguero is surrounded by winding rivers that take you further into this paradise, so plan to take a boat tour to experience all the area has to offer.
Guanacaste. With its beautiful, white sandy beaches and abundant rainforests, the province of Guanacaste has become a popular vacation spot. Ranching is a part of daily life in Guanacaste – it is not unusual to see cowboys, or sabenaros, riding their horses or participating in a US-style rodeo. And don’t miss a visit to Santa Rosa National Park, a UNESCO Heritage Site designed to protect the site of the Battle of Santa Rosa in 1856. It also is one of the last remaining dry tropical forests in the world.
San Jose. Costa Rica’s capital, San Jose, is a bustling metropolis. The city is rich in history and culture. The main attractions in San Jose are the museums. Two must-see stops are the National Museum, where you’ll learn about Costa Rica’s history, and the Pre-Columbian Gold Museum, where you can gold artifacts created by the indigenous peoples going back to millennia.
Monteverde Cloud Forest Biological Reserve. The Monteverde Cloud Forest is unique on several accounts. First, it is situated on the Continental Divide – where the Atlantic and Pacific slopes collide (similar to the one in the Colorado Rockies). There are also four different life zones within the reserve, each with a different ecosystem. Over 100 kinds of mammals, 500 birds, and 120 amphibians and reptiles can be found, not to mention all the insects and over 3,000 plants, including more than 500 species of orchid alone. Tours are available both on the ground and, obviously, up in the clouds.
Ready to plan your trip to Costa Rica? Give Luxury Destinations Concierge a call at (805) 236-4437.
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