Cultural Activities in Costa Rica

A Welcoming Land of Fiestas, Festivals and Rodeos

Beaches and the sunshine lure millions to Costa Rica each year. But there is also ample reason to venture beyond the resorts to discover a country rich in history, handicrafts and unique cultural traditions. In local villages, visitors can join in the singing, dancing and feasting during the numerous fiestas, festivals and rodeos that are an integral part of the national culture. Equally memorable are the elaborate street processions that honor painted icons, commemorate civic and religious events or unleash hordes of capering costumed devils. During quieter times, these same villages are home to artisanal craftsmen who create unique works of both art and utility from clay, wood and fabrics.

Highlights

  • Best for: All travellers from budget to luxury with a love of nature and adventure
  • Best season to visit: Year Round, drier November - May
  • Weather: There is minimal seasonal variation in air temperatures, with highs reaching near 90 and lows touching 70 at night. The wet season runs from May through November, drier months from December to April bring lower humidity

Costa Rica Information

Cultural Activities in Costa Rica Overview

One of the most culturally diverse regions of Costa Rica is Guanacaste Province. Though best known for its cowboy culture and ranching heritage, this area is also home to a number of indigenous peoples that blend pre-Colombian heritage with elements of Spanish culture. The villages and historic cities of Guanacaste are a favorite destination not only for international visitors but also Costa Rican nationals, who come to enjoy lively festival traditions.

Cultural Activities in Costa Rica Tips

Visits to smaller towns and villages provide an ideal opportunity to sample authentic regional dishes. Signature Guanacaste favorites include tamal de elote, atol de maiz, rosquillas and tortillas revueltas. Vino de coyol is a popular and mildly alcoholic local drink made from fermented juice extracted from palm trees.

Best Places for Cultural Activities in Costa Rica

In the village of Guaitil, descendants of the indigenous Chorotegas people create prized ceramic works using traditional methods dating back nearly 1,000 years. Santa Cruz honors its patron saint, Santo Cristo de Esquipulas, with dances, parties and local delicacies. Guanacaste province celebrates their cowboy heritage with horse parades, bull riding contests and rural fiestas. Known as the White City for its whitewashed walls, Liberia is home to the Sabaneros Museum and well-preserved Colonial-era buildings.

What to Pack for Cultural Activities in Costa Rica

Bring your ATM card, and use it to get the best rate on the local currency (colones), which is the best way to pay at smaller restaurants and street vendors. Mix tropical-weight clothing for the coast with something a bit more substantial for visits to mountain areas, which can be as much as 20 degrees cooler.

Specials

Dive

Costa Rica

Okeanos Aggressor I

LIVEABOARD - SAVE 25% - COCOS ISLAND ADVENTURE includes 10 night Deluxe cabin accommodations, up to 24 amazing dives as scheduled, breakfast, lunch and dinner daily, non-alcoholic beverages plus local beer and wine and roundtrip airport transfers. Okeanos Aggressor I departs from the port town of Puntarenas.

Cocos Island, Costa Rica is a lush, green uninhabited island 342 miles off Costa Rica's Pacific coast. Rocky pinnacles surrounding Cocos are beacons for big animals and action. Hammerheads, white-tip sharks, mantas, tuna and whale sharks.
Cocos Island National Park was designated a World Heritage site by UNESCO in 1997. Weather permitting, divers are shuttled ashore to hike the jungles of Cocos and swim in the waterfall.

Valid for 12/18/21-12/28/21. Space subject to availability.
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From $4,049 per person diver

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Dive
Ziplining
Animal Interactions
Cultural Activities

Costa Rica

Villa Del Sueno

PAPAGAYO – 10 DIVES & 1-TOPSIDE ADVENTURE SPECIAL 7 night's package includes accommodations, 5 days of 2-tank boat dives, breakfast daily, roundtrip airport transfers, hotel tax and service charges.

Choice of 1 topside adventure:
Max Adventure #1 includes zip-lining, canyon rappelling, whitewater tubing, thermal pools and volcanic mud baths.
Wildlife River Cruise Adventure #2 includes monkeys, bird & crocodile wildlife river cruise along the Palo Verde River

Valid through 4/30/21. Rates from $1299 per person/per diver.
Valid 5/1/21-12/19/21. Rates from $1099 per person/per diver.

Contact Caradonna Adventures at 800.328.2288 for questions/additional information.
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From $1099 per person/double diver

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Dive
Ziplining

Costa Rica

Villa Del Sueno

PLAYA HERMOSA – $499 5 NIGHT HOTEL & DIVE SPECIAL includes accommodations, 3 days of 2-tank boat dives, breakfast daily and hotel taxes.

Valid for travel 6/15/21-12/1/21.

Contact Caradonna Adventures at 800.328.2288 with any questions.
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From $499 per person/double diver

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Dive
Ziplining
Animal Interactions
Cultural Activities

Costa Rica

Villas Sol Hotel & Beach Resort

PLAYA HERMOSA – 10 DIVES & 1-TOPSIDE ADVENTURE SPECIAL 7 night's package includes accommodations, 5 days of 2-tank boat dives, breakfast, lunch, dinner daily and beverages including alcohol, roundtrip airport transfers, hotel tax and service charges.

Choice of 1 topside adventure:
Max Adventure #1 includes zip-lining, canyon rappelling, whitewater tubing, thermal pools and volcanic mud baths.
Wildlife River Cruise Adventure #2 includes monkeys, bird & crocodile wildlife river cruise along the Palo Verde River

Valid 1/2/21 - 3/25/21. Rates from $1723 per person/per diver.
Valid 4/5/21 - 6/30/21. Rates from $1618 per person/per diver.
Valid 7/1/21 - 7/31/21. Rates from $1723 per person/double diver.
Valid 8/1/21 - 12/20/21. Rates from $1599 per person/double diver.

Contact Caradonna Adventures at 800.328.2288 for questions/additional information.
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From $1,599 per person double diver

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Packages

Dive
Ziplining

Costa Rica

Villa Del Sueno

PLAYA HERMOSA – $499 5 NIGHT HOTEL & DIVE SPECIAL includes accommodations, 3 days of 2-tank boat dives, breakfast daily and hotel taxes.

Valid for travel 6/15/21-12/1/21.

Contact Caradonna Adventures at 800.328.2288 with any questions.
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From $499 per person/double diver

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Dive
Ziplining
Animal Interactions
Cultural Activities
Paddle Sports
Snorkeling
Ziplining

Costa Rica

Margaritaville Beach Resort

PLAYA HERMOSA – 10 DIVES & 1-TOPSIDE ADVENTURE SPECIAL 7 night's package includes accommodations, 5 days of 2-tank boat dives, breakfast daily, roundtrip airport transfers, hotel tax and service charges.

Choice of 1 topside adventure:
Max Adventure #1 includes zip-lining, canyon rappelling, whitewater tubing, thermal pools and volcanic mud baths.
Wildlife River Cruise Adventure #2 includes monkeys, bird & crocodile wildlife river cruise along the Palo Verde River

Contact Caradonna Adventures at 800.328.2288 for last minute specials/additional pricing/information.
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From $1,547 per person/double diver

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Dive
Ziplining
Animal Interactions
Cultural Activities

Costa Rica

Villas Sol Hotel & Beach Resort

PLAYA HERMOSA – 10 DIVES & 1-TOPSIDE ADVENTURE SPECIAL 7 night's package includes accommodations, 5 days of 2-tank boat dives, breakfast, lunch, dinner daily and beverages including alcohol, roundtrip airport transfers, hotel tax and service charges.

Choice of 1 topside adventure:
Max Adventure #1 includes zip-lining, canyon rappelling, whitewater tubing, thermal pools and volcanic mud baths.
Wildlife River Cruise Adventure #2 includes monkeys, bird & crocodile wildlife river cruise along the Palo Verde River

Contact Caradonna Adventures at 800.328.2288 for last minute specials/additional pricing/information.
Read More

From $1,599 per person/double diver

Book Now
Dive
Ziplining
Animal Interactions
Cultural Activities

Costa Rica

Bosque del Mar Hotel

PLAYA HERMOSA – 10 DIVES & 1-TOPSIDE ADVENTURE SPECIAL 7 night's package includes accommodations, 5 days of 2-tank boat dives, breakfast daily, roundtrip airport transfers, hotel tax and service charges.

Choice of 1 topside adventure:
Max Adventure #1 includes zip-lining, canyon rappelling, whitewater tubing, thermal pools and volcanic mud baths.
Wildlife River Cruise Adventure #2 includes monkeys, bird & crocodile wildlife river cruise along the Palo Verde River

Contact Caradonna Adventures at 800.328.2288 for last minute specials/additional pricing/information.
Read More

From $1,418 per person double diver

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Resorts

Dive
Ziplining

Costa Rica

Villa Del Sueno

PLAYA HERMOSA – $499 5 NIGHT HOTEL & DIVE SPECIAL includes accommodations, 3 days of 2-tank boat dives, breakfast daily and hotel taxes.

Valid for travel 6/15/21-12/1/21.

Contact Caradonna Adventures at 800.328.2288 with any questions.
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From $499 per person/double diver

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Dive
Ziplining
Cultural Activities
Offroading

Costa Rica

Villas Sol Hotel & Beach Resort

PLAYA HERMOSA, GUANACASTE - All-inclusive resort with views of Gulf of Papagayo. Dive services provided by Bill Beards Preferred Costa Rica Dive Operators. High speed boats to Catalina and Bat Islands for diving. Two restaurants and bars, including swim up pool bar. Twenty minutes from Daniel Oduber Int’l Airport (LIR).

Optional add-ons for Watersports Activities and Topside Activities available in the shopping cart after room category is selected.

Contact Caradonna Adventures at 800.328.2288 for additional information.
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Snorkeling
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Hiking
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Costa Rica

Casa Conde del Mar

PLAYA PANAMÁ, GUANACASTE - Eco-friendly pristine beach-front boutique hotel features 26 spacious rooms, restaurant and 2 large pools on 22 acres of tropical dry forest. Local diving, Catalina Island and Bat Island available provided by Bill Beards Preferred Costa Rica Dive Operators. Thirty minutes from Liberia International Airport in Guanacaste.

Optional add-ons for Watersports Activities and Topside Activities available in the shopping cart after room category is selected.

Contact Caradonna Adventures at 800.328.2288 for additional information.
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See Packages & Learn More
Dive
Ziplining

Costa Rica

Bosque del Mar Hotel

PLAYA HERMOSA - A high-end boutique eco concept beachfront resort surrounded by beautiful gardens with frequent visits by local monkeys and iguanas. Thirty-two rooms in all comprised of 20 junior suites, 6 ocean-front suites with Jacuzzi, and 6 garden suites. Close to Local diving including both Catalina & Bat Islands.

Optional add-ons for Watersports Activities and Topside Activities available in the shopping cart after room category is selected.

Contact Caradonna Adventures at 800.328.2288 for additional information.
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From $1,477 per person double diver

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Dive
Hiking
Ziplining
Paddle Sports
Cultural Activities

Costa Rica

Occidental Papagayo

PAPAGAYO, GUANACASTE - All-inclusive Resort for adults-only (+18 years) ideal for couples & groups surrounded by a unique, natural setting. Dive services provided by Bill Beards Preferred Costa Rica Dive Operators. Unlimited meals and snacks, unlimited national & imported Drink’s at 4 bars. Two outdoor pools, spa & gym, wide selection of - tennis, volleyball, kayaking, snorkeling and more. 35 minutes from Liberia International Airport.

Optional add-ons for Watersports Activities and Topside Activities available in the shopping cart after room category is selected.

Contact Caradonna Adventures at 800.328.2288 for additional information.
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See Packages & Learn More

Passport and/or Visa Requirements

A valid passport is required for entry that must be valid for length of stay. No visa is required for stays less than 90 days. The passport must have at least one blank page for the Costa Rica entry stamp. There is a departure tax of approximately $29 U.S. which should be included in your international ticket. Check the entry/exit requirements here.

Immunizations

There are no immunizations required for entry into Costa Rica, although you should check with your doctor and with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for other recommendations.

Culture and Customs

Costa Rica is known as the safest and most prosperous country in Central America. It is home to a large community of North American ex-pats, but also retains its distinctly Latin culture, which includes a relaxed attitude to schedules that is known as “Tico time.” Laid back is not the same as uncaring, however, and Costa Ricans are known for taking pride in their appearances and their work. A well-developed road system connects major destinations, but much of the country's central highlands remain wild and protected within national parks. Within a day's drive of beach resorts at Guanacaste lie the slopes of Arenal Volcano, the Monteverde Cloud Forest and Palo Verde National Park. Costa Rica is the eco-adventure capital of the Caribbean. Surfers come from around the world to ride famous breaks from Witch's Rock to Pavones. Coastal lodges are filled with fishermen seeking light tackle challenges with roosterfish or tug of war with a marlin. Forests draw birders, hikers and naturalists, and there are more than a dozen rivers offering whitewater rafting thrills. More relaxing experiences await at hot springs, where spa treatments and soaks in mineral-rich volcanic water provide a soothing end to an active day.

Electricity, Phone and Internet Access

The standard in Costa Rica is the same as in the United States: 110 volts AC (60 cycles). Some electric outlets only have 2 prong sockets, so an adapter may be needed for 3 prong plugs.

Costa Rica has an excellent phone system, and the country code for dialing is 506. Check with your cell phone provider for international data and voice plans and costs.

Many resorts and restaurants offer WiFi.

Water Quality

Although the water in Costa Rica is generally safe to drink, water quality varies in some cities. It would be best to use bottled water and avoid ice.

Language & Currency

Spanish is the official language of Costa Rica, but English is widely spoken. The Costa Rican currency is called the “colon”. Check the current exchange rate here. Many businesses will accept U.S. Dollars and major credit cards are widely accepted.

Time

Costa Rica is on Central Standard Time, 6 hours behind Greenwich Mean Time (-6 GMT). Costa Rica does not use daylight saving time, so the time difference is an additional hour April through October.

Location, Size and Population

Costa Rica is located in Central America, bordering both the Caribbean Sea and the North Pacific Ocean, between Nicaragua (to the north) and Panama (to the south). Costa Rica encompasses a total of 19,700 square miles (51,100 square kilometers).

The population of Costa Rica is 4.9 Million (2015) with approximately 350,000 living in the province of Guanacaste.