A place to expand your senses and clear your sinuses in lush flora and calm your mind watching majestic fauna jump right by.
Why Go to Costa Rica?
In 1999 the Costa Rican Tourism Institute declared Costa Rica “a land of marvels”. Costa Rica is one of the most biodiverse countries on the planet and has attracted researchers and ecotourists from all over the world. Here you will find an array of wildlife species. If you are in the right spot at the right time you may find yourself surrounded with Howler Monkeys, White Nosed Coati (Raccoons), Lizards, Butterflies, and many other phenomenal looking creatures. If you want to experience flying head first at 96 Kilometers (60MPH) in the superman position here is the place to do it. If you have an interest in learning about the countries history and surrounding yourself with native speakers then here is where you will want to be. Just like any language, Spanish can be difficult to learn so why not immerse yourself in the language by hopping on by.
If you love to experiment with new drinks, make sure to splash your mouth with fresh coconut water from a cocoanut fresh from a cocoanut tree. Maybe try some palm wine which is the firewater of rural farmers. Make sure to visit a coco bean farm and try some fresh home made coffee. Costa Rica is known to do well politically, economically, and progressively in social reform.
Costa Rica Monkeys
The Mico de Chiero (Squirrel Monkey) can be found in the Panama, Pacific Lowlands and parts of Costa Rica. They are often seen in tropical evergreen forests and mangroves. If you spot one you will probably find a few more since they travel in packs of a few to even a hundred depending upon their location. Their diet consists of fruits, insects and leaves. These monkeys are very small and quickly move around. Their average size is about 29 cm long. As you can see in the picture, the tail is longer than the body. The average weight of a Mico de Chiero is 0.5 kg. (1.1 lbs.) – 1.2kg. (2.42 lbs.).
The Alouatta Palliata (Mantled Howler Monkey) is one of the 15 species of Howler Monkeys’ found in Central and South America. The Monkeys’ are known to howl in order to locate each other. They are often seen eating leaves and fruit in their free time. These Monkeys’ are around 3.5 feet long and 4.5 kg. – 7.3 kg. (10lbs. -16 lbs.).
The Wet/Invierno (Winter) season is from May through Mid-November. The Dry/Verano (Summer) season is from Mid-November through April. Although the country my look kind of small on a world map the temperature varies greatly depending upon where you are in the country. If you plan on moving around make sure to dress in layers and bring rain pants and a rain jacket.
Manuel Antonio National Park
Manuel Antonio Park sits on the Pacific Coast and is home to one of the many small and secluded parks in Costa Rica. Here you can enjoy the seclusion of city life and sit back and let your body burn like a hot tamale. The beach front may be small but the view is spectacular. If you don’t want to burn like a hot tamale you can sign up and do a nature tour with one of the guides along the gravel roads and shaded boardwalks.
Environment and Geography
Costa Rica is divided into 7 providences with each one of them having their own unique biodiverse features. The biodiverse landscape offers nature lovers and researchers endless opportunities for discovery. La Amistad (Friendship) Biosphere Reserve was declared a World Heritage Site in 1983. In Costa Rica you will find hundreds of thousands of exotic animals roaming this small piece of land that only consists of 4% landmass. There are 4 mountain ranges that runs north to south through the middle of the country that is broken by the Central Plateau that stretches 15 miles west to east and 40 miles north to south. Caño and Coco Island are part of the national territory.
Sunset & Midday
It doesn’t matter what time you go because any time is a good time!
- Almost 2/3 of the coasts are foreign owned and development is outpacing sustainability. Although this has become a concern, many Ticos (Costa Ricans) and foreigners are do gooders and ecologists are vigilant about protecting their natural heritage.
- Pura Vida means ‘Pure Life’ – It’s a way of life. Make sure to follow the golden rule and avoid conflict withe the Ticos.
- Costa Rica is the largest coffee bean producer on the planet and second largest banana producer on the plant.
- Since 1948 Costa Rica has had no armed forces.
Costa Rican Land Crab
These land crab are known to be around 4 inches long and have an average of 11 years to live.
The country’s diverse landscape and majestic creatures are so powerful to the eye of a visitor that often times San José goes unnoticed. San José is the country’s Capital. Many of the buildings were built during the Spanish Colonial Era. The Ticos (Costa Ricans) are more than happy to show you around the gorgeous city.
The Little Creatures
If you are not careful the raccoons will steel your belongings on the beach. Do not think about bringing any crummy food with you. They have been known to take non-edible items like your phone or camera and run into the water or forrest with them.
Costa Rican Rivers
Don’t jump out of the boat! The rivers are filled with Saltwater Crocodiles.
Adventure Parks & Fun Places To Visit
If you are looking to fly at the speed of light than zip lining through the Arenal Reserve and Monteverde Skyline is a must do activity. If you still want to fly high above the clouds and prefer to take it a bit slower, than there are parks with open sky trams. Below is a list of Adventure Parks for Adrenaline Junkies to visit.
Monteverde and Fortuna -Arenal Volcano Area: Sky Adventures
Monteverde Region: Selvatura park
Guanacaste region: Diamante Eco Adventure Park
Costa Rican Center of Science & Culture: Costa Rican Center of Science & Culture
Museum of Costa Rican Art: Museum of Costa Rican Art
Museo Nacional de Costa Rica: Museo Nacional de Costa Rica
Museum of Contemporary Art & Design: Museum of Contemporary Art & Design
Sea Turtle Conservancy Visitors Center: Sea Turtle Conservancy Visitors Center
- With limited cell service, know that the sun sets approximately at 6pm all year around. Depending upon where you are you don’t want to get lost at night.
- If you hate airports than you are in luck. The lines were short and the TSA was fairly fast, quick, and easy. They don’t make you strip your shoes and belt off and they don’t make you take any devices out of your bags. They are very lenient about getting food through and allow you to take water along with you.
- If you are a backpacker and love to spend your nights camping outdoors, make sure to call the places you want to stay at first. The parks are very strict about people interfering with the wildlife at night. Many parks do not let you camp over night.
- There is no bad time to visit the country. Just make sure to bring rain gear since it rains in the afternoons.
- Knowing Spanish will make life a lot easier but English is fine too.
A Guide to Newport’s Cliff Walk: Tales of seaside Mansions and the Gilded Age Elite edited by Steven Palmer and Iván Molina.
This book is great for those that are looking to do in depth research into the history, culture, and politics of the country. If you plan on moving or taking a long vacation or just looking for another 400 page book to read, this book will really get you going.
Culture and Customs of Costa Rica by Chalene Helmuth.
This book has a Chronology and gives an in depth look on how the people move throughout their daily lives.
Costa Rica Folk Culture, Traditions, & Cuisine by Jack Donnelly.
This book is great for people who are looking to get an inside look at the nations traditions and an introduction to food choices.
National Geographic Traveler – Costa Rica 5th edition by National Geographics.
Here is a great book for National Geographic Fans.