Costa Rica might be known as one of the most biodiverse countries on earth, but with this abundance of nature comes a magnificent natural playground that host a wide range of adventure activities guaranteed to get the pulse racing.
From surfing on the Pacific coast to zip lining through the cloud forest canopy, there’s no better feeling than relaxing in your stunning eco-accommodation with a cold beer after a long day exploring the pristine landscapes that dominate Costa Rica.
To inspire you for your next adventure in Costa Rica, we’ve put together a list of our favourite adventure activities you can throw yourself into, as well as when and where the best time and places are to enjoy them.
Surfing in Costa Rica, particularly on the Pacific coast, is less of a hobby than a way of life. With white-sand, palm fringed beaches and completely uninterrupted swells straight from the largest Ocean on earth, there’s no wonder surfers from all over the world flock to places like Puntarenas Province for a surfing holiday, or in some cases, a new life.
And it’s not simply the natural features of Costa Rica’s Pacific coast that make it a haven for surfers. The coastline is also dotted with beautifully laid-back surf towns and villages, where the locals are famed for their slow pace of life and endless hospitality.
With Not In The Guidebooks, you can easily find one of these such havens, and get out in the waves with a local and other, likeminded travellers to enjoy a slice of local Costa Rican culture.
2. White Water Rafting
Throw together a wet, tropical climate, rugged mountain terrain and rivers that have been left untouched by human activity, and you have yourself white water rafting heaven. In Costa Rica, you have all of those things in abundance, and unlike rafting in places like Canada, the US or Norway, you’ll actually be able to enjoy a white-knuckle ride in relative warmth.
There are rivers with sections for all intensities, so whether you’re a true adrenaline junkie hoping to experience some class IV rapids, or a family looking to try white water rafting for the first time as part of you Costa Rica adventure, there is the ideal activity out there for you.
The ideal time to head out white water rafting in Costa Rica is once the rainy season really begins, between the months of May through to October. Some of the best rafting rivers include Rio Balsa, the Rio Toro, and Costa Rica’s white water rafting capital, Turriabla.
Whether you want to visit the craters of active volcanoes, hidden lagoons and waterfalls deep in the rainforest, or spot some spectacular animals on a wildlife holiday in Costa Rica, generally the best way to get about is on foot.
For some of the best hiking trails and holidays in Costa Rica, head to Monteverde and the cloud forest for walks that take you through the otherworldly mist of the canopy, or to Arenal Volcano for a truly unforgettable hike far above the green carpet of the rainforest.
Wherever you choose to go exploring on your Costa Rican adventure, it’s always worth seeking the help of a local guide who can help plan you a route that takes in all the highlights you’re expecting, as well as introduce you to the hidden gems that many tourists might miss.